In the old days, scores were settled with duels. The two aggrieved parties faced off against each other on the field of combat, and only one of them left alive and with his honour intact.
We like to think we live in more civilised times now, preferring to post anonymous, hate-filled things on the internet rather than engaging in sword fights at dawn.
Gentlemen! offers a digital solution. Two competitors face off across the field of an iPad, with only one of them winning the points and plaudits at the end of the round.Pip pip
If you like to play on your own then Gentlemen! isn't the game for you. It's a one-on-one platforming deathmatch that sees you hurling homing pigeons and knives in the direction of your well-to-do adversary.
The game is played in portrait mode, and each of you has a set of controls at the top or bottom of the iPad. These move you left and right; flip your gravity to let you bounce up or down onto different platforms; and let you launch attacks.
There are three game modes to play. Duel is a simple battle to be the first to kill your foe a set number of times. Diamond Duel gives you two ways to win - kills or collection shiny diamonds. And Chase only lets one of you use your weapon at once in a constantly shifting game of predator and prey.
A button floats around each level letting you swap weapons. Tap it and both you and your opponent will end up with a different tool of murder. There are different kinds of knives, bombs, electric blasts, and deadly birds to use and master.To the pain
Gentlemen! is a subtle and smart balancing act. It's addictive, wonderfully put together, and unlike almost anything else you're going to find on the App Store. For that reason alone it deserves to be championed, but there's more to the game than its individuality.
This is pure arcade violence, polished and poised to almost otherworldly perfection. And the fact that you're staring across a 10-inch gap to your opponent makes for even more delicious victories and crushing defeats.
If you have any interest in same-screen multiplayer you owe it to yourself to pick up Gentlemen!