Review: Ravensword: Shadowlands – The Hit Action RPG Returns On IOS

Review: Ravensword: Shadowlands – The Hit Action RPG Returns On IOS

Ravensword: The Fallen King was one of the first critically acclaimed action-RPGs on iOS. Released in 2009, it set the bar for what the genre should live up to and the right direction for other developers to follow in. One of the most anticipated games of 2012 from Crescent Moon Games is the sequel to Fallen Kings; Ravensword: Shadowlands ($6.99, App Store Link).


The sequel is just as large of an open-world game as the original, if not more. Shadowlands could be the most detailed action-RPGs of the year from every aspect from missions and story to the controls and visuals. It takes the genre to new heights and gives fans the in-depth game they’ve been seeking on iOS for a good amount of time.

Set 500 years after Fallen King, in Ravensword: Shadowlands you wake up in a city known as Aven. You play as a survivor who has had a run-in with the dark elves. After everyone of your allies vanishes and you are the last one left standing. After realizing this, you wonder how you survived and how you wound up in the Guild hall.


Right from the start of the game, you’re thrown directly into the action. After fighting through the first sequence, you go to visit the keeper of magical lore, Archmage. Upon learning that you were almost the victim of his spell, you dig deeper into the quest of Shadowlands to search for three Ravenstones and solve the mysteries of the Kingdom of Tyreas before a demon’s prerogative is to obliterate the entire world.

Ravensword: Shadowlands is a true action-RPG with tons of side quests and tasks to complete along with the main story. Even though there are plenty of RPG elements within Shadowlands, besides going through tasks and searching for items for the townsfolk, there is plenty of action and combat to be had. One of the first battles you encounter is a giant troll you have to defeat with your comrades. The controls are pretty basic, which makes the combat more of a button mash type of fighting style.

Of course, it all fits in well since Shadowlands is an action-RPG. It keeps the game on more of a faster pace than your traditional RPGs. You start off with a sword and a shield. You can upgrade from there with the gold you collect and move onto other weapons such as crossbows and hammers. I was playing on a pretty hard difficulty level a majority of the game and for that time I used the same sword and shield often.

For the most part, you just have to be accurate and timely while using your shield and that will keep you alive more often than not. Besides the various variety of weapons, you can cast magical spells on your enemies. Most of these spells are really effective and will knock out your enemy with one hit. The more powerful enemies take a little more effort to kill.


Controls and the user interface are a big part of Ravensword: Shadowlands. You control the character with the left thumbstick Even though it fades after a few seconds, if you’ve played any other action games on iOS, you know what to expect, so it’s easy to adapt to. The other controls on the right are the action button to block and attack and a jump button.

You would imagine the action button wouldn’t work too well combined like this, but I like it even more in this instance because you only use one or the other at a time anyway. Another interesting feature of the controls is the ability to switch between first and third person. I have noticed it’s a little harder to control your character in third person, especially on an iPhone because the camera doesn’t seem to respond too well when you’re swiping across the screen, but switching views is a nice change of pace.


The menus and interface of Shadowlands are pretty easy to navigate. You can of course cycle through your inventory, view the quests, map, stats, and more. The map is somewhat general. It tells you vaguely what area you’re in, but it’s not really too detailed. At times when someone tells you go to a specific area and look for another character, it doesn’t show the exact location, but it’s not that any given area is too large that you can’t just go searching for what you’re looking for on your own.

The visuals live up to what made the first installment of Ravensword so great and Shadowlands just adds to the beautifully detailed world. As far as action-RPGs go, Shadowlands goes well beyond graphics capability that we’ve all come to expect from iOS games, and more specifically action games. Shadowlands is powered by the Unity engine, which gives the game a vibrant and highly detailed textured world. Shadowlands has some of the best game art for any game on the App Store. Even on older devices the game shines visually with no noticeable lag.


Ravensword: Shadowlands brings so much in every form from gameplay and the story to the graphics. If you’re a fan of the genre, or even if you’re a more casual fan and you’re looking for something to take full advantage of your iDevice, Shadowlands will deliver on all fronts. If you’re a fan of some of the Elder Scrolls games, you’ll be familiar with Shadowlands.

The controls are easy to pick up on even without the short tutorial. The difficulty can vary at times throughout the game. You can adjust it in the settings, but even if you do that, it seems to jump up and down. Shadowlands is still a pretty challenging game and with the amount of quests and side quests, you’ll be enjoying it for hours on end.

Price: $6.99, App Store Link

Rating: 5/5[rating:5]


  • Great graphics
  • Easy to learn controls
  • Tons of quests


  • The map is somewhat general
  • Difficulty can change randomly