Xenome Episode 1

I recently bought an iPhone 4 and was looking for a new game to play to make me feel better about switching phones in less than a year.

A new title in the App Store, Xenome, caught my eye. It promised an open world environment akin to Borderlands and Fallout 3, two games I love. There was no free version to try, and no reviews yet, but “what the hell” I thought, and downloaded.

Poor controls mar what might otherwise be a great game.

First let me say that the developers have done a lot of great stuff in this game. Good design. Good story. And it is evocative of both Fallout 3 and Borderlands. But after about an hour and a half of struggling with the controls, I just gave up. The game utilizes a dual joystick set up, but the responsiveness just isn’t all that great. I had a very hard time getting where I wanted to go and getting the camera to swing where I wanted it to so I could see who or what was attacking me. The hud is also painfully cramped. So much so that it is a real pain to access all the additional screens to manage inventory, quests, etc.

I didn’t dislike the game, but I didn’t really enjoy playing it either. I’m hopeful that a later update will make the controls more responsive and the camera more fluid.

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