Game Reviews

Kingsman: The Secret Service review - "A mobile spy thriller with more going for it than you might imagine"

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Kingsman: The Secret Service review - "A mobile spy thriller with more going for it than you might imagine"

I'm of the generation that approaches movie tie-in games with a good deal of trepidation - they were always rubbish when I was growing up, so that's the foundation I'm stood upon when I hear about them. Thankfully though, Kingsman: The Secret Service doesn't follow the trends of my youth.

Sure, it's a tie-in for a couple of films that came out a while ago, but there's a decent understanding of the source material here, as well as some really smart ideas that make sure the game keeps you entertained while you're bashing your way through it.

Kith and king

The game sees you playing as a cute cartoon version of Eggsy, the main character from the film. Don't let that cuteness put you off though, there's gooey splashes of the series' trademark violence here. It's just cartoon blood instead of comic book or movie, and that's pretty cool.

At first glance the game looks a bit like a platformer, but it's only going to take a few minutes to disabuse you of that notion. Sure there's jumping around, but you're not using buttons to do it, and it's not the main thrust of the game. You drag to leap, but it's actually a defensive move in the game's fights.

When you're targetted by one of the many enemies, you get a few seconds to make your move. Jump out of the way of the incoming fire, then blast out your own shots when you reach the pause point of your leap. It's smart, and it means the action here doesn't demand perfection from imperfect controls.

Kingsman: The Secret Service iOS screenshot - A wall of lasers

You've got a bunch of different gadgets you can use. The umbrella gun lets you shoot and defend yourself, the knife shoe lets you take running attacks. You've got AR glasses that can hack into various bits of technology as well.

When the game is flowing, and you're darting around the screen taking out bad guys left right and centre, it feels brilliant. But while those moments are found throughout the game, sometimes things do get a bit stickier.

There are times when you'll be trapped in a corner, or you'll grab a ledge that ruins your jump. It's never enough to destroy the experience, but it can jar a little which is a shame. Especially when the progression the game offers up is some of the finest we've seen in a long while.

Eggsy on your face

So no, Kingsman: The Secret Service isn't one of those movie tie-in games that make you wonder why you bother with digital entertainment in the first place. It's well put together, it's got some neat ideas, and when it's at its best it's an awful lot of fun.

There are a few niggles here and there, but for the most part they're little annoying nudges rather than full kicks to the crotch. As mobile action games go, there haven't been many this year that can better this one when it's at its best, and even when it slumps it's still above average.

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Kingsman: The Secret Service review - "A mobile spy thriller with more going for it than you might imagine"

It might not be perfect, but there's enough fun to be had in Kingsman: The Secret Service that you're not going to mind too much
Harry Slater
Harry Slater
Harry used to be really good at Snake on the Nokia 5110. Apparently though, digital snake wrangling isn't a proper job, so now he writes words about games instead.