Superman (iOS)



Genre: Action
Release Date: November 18, 2011
Platform: iOS, iPhone
Price: $0.99




Image Credit: iOS App Store




It’s a bird, It’s a plane, It’s… another sub-par Superman game! Superman might be the Man of Steel but his video game history has been more of a rusty slab of metal.

Ever since I got (and was let down by) Superman: The Game in a shoebox full of Atari 2600 games, I have played many of Earth’s greatest hero’s digital adventures. Each time I went in hoping for a chance to really feel like Superman. Unfortunately, it seems like they were all programmed with a Kryptonite computer because they make Superman feel more like Mediocreman, or Terribleman.

Now, iOS devices are getting a chance to live in the world of Kal-El in the aptly titled Superman. While it may be one of the best Superman games to date… all is not as well as I had hoped for.

The game starts promisingly, with an art style that lends itself to it’s comic books roots. Cut scenes are done in comic book panel style with well drawn pictures that really set the mood. At the same time, the story itself is boring and at times contradictory to itself, feeling more like filler than anything else. The premise is a classic DC tale. Lex Luthor says he’s out to save the world and while Superman isn’t convinced, he has to go along with it until he knows for sure. But problems in the story start creeping up like a cutscene that has Lex sending troops out to help you defeat an enemy only to have the game task you with you with stopping Lex’s men, with no secondary villain even in the mission. You’re just fighting Lex’s men for no reason.



The in-game 2D world is colorful and filled with cars, people and buildings. Everything is too small on the screen, but it’s at least animated well. Everyone should get the chance to fly up from the streets of Metropolis, past the top of the Daily Planet, through the clouds into space and back down again, despite the rest of the game.

The controls work well and, for the first time, really give you an idea of what it feels like to be Superman. There is no button to fly, just move the virtual joystick up and off he goes. Move closer to the ground and he will walk or run along the street. There is a turbo button and one action button which will handle whatever super power is needed for the given situation. Unfortunately, most of the time you will end up using super breath to put out fires, super speed to knock over bank robbers running down the street or super strength to stop some random giant object falling from the sky towards the city. It’s fun when its fresh and new, but after a few missions of doing the same things over and over again it gets tiresome and boring.

The sound seems to have come from some generic sound effect database and, while they fit, they are nothing to write home about. The music is repetitive and irritating. All dialog is handled through on screen text, so turning the sound off wouldn’t be the worst idea when playing.

As a huge Superman fan I can say this game isn’t a total waste of my App Store dollars, but for anyone other than hardcore fans that were looking to get into Superman’s tights, I would save save your money for some actual Superman comics, a Superman lunch pail or maybe the Smallville 62-disc entire series box set that recently came out. Now there’s money well-spent.














– Keith White Jr.

Follow Me @KeefWhiteJr