Some games have you chasing a key or coins, diamonds or a doorway. League of Evil is the only game we know of where the goal is to reach a scientist at the end of each level, and then punch him to pieces. Like slamming the buzzer at the end of an American Ninja Warrior obstacle course, it’s that last satisfying punch that has helped define Ravenous Games’ League of Evil series.
League of Evil
The first League of Evil introduced its complex, finger-twisting obstacle courses with retro-style pixel art. Based on a Flash game, the original iOS version only contained 54 levels, which was eventually bumped to 102 in an update. In each level, you had to try to locate a hidden suitcase, beat the time limit, and punch the scientist at the end in order to achieve a three-star rating. For an added challenge, you could attempt the Impossible Missions, which lived up to their name.
Key Quote: “Each level is carefully designed to be challenging, but ultimately completable. As long as you don’t give up after dying a few times you’ll always pull through. Because of this, completing each level is a genuinely rewarding feeling.”
League of Evil 2
For the sequel, League of Evil 2 introduced a new, cartoony art style to replace the old pixel art. However, your moves are the same: You can double-jump, wall-jump, and punch enemies who stand in your way. At the same time, you have to avoid buzz saws and lasers to avoid ending up a dead agent. Fortunately, the touchscreen controls are highly responsive, and you could even use a Bluetooth iCade controller to control your character.
Key Quote: “Replay value is a major selling point for League of Evil 2. Each level has a top time to beat and a collectable intel briefcase placed in a hard-to-reach spot, often requiring you to take an extra-challenging path through the level. Achieving both of these goals nets you a gold medal. It’s extremely addictive, so expect to come back often.”
League of Evil 3
For the third game, the challenge was ramped up considerably, but the concept remains the same. You still have to race through obstacles, climb up walls, and make tricky jumps over spikes in order to collect a suitcase and punch a scientist, but the increased challenge meant that you can expect to die a lot more often along the way. The initial environments look similar to the second game as well, so you’d have to play for a bit to see some new backgrounds. While the first two games are great for beginners, this third game is for evil experts only.
Key Quote: “Let’s get this out of the way: League of Evil 3 is hard. Harder than nails. Harder than concrete. Harder than Bruce Lee punching a bear encased in diamonds. League of Evil 2, while still immensely difficult, slowly ramped up the challenge over the course of its first level pack. In this sequel there’s none of that nonsense: The difficulty curve is like jumping into the Grand Canyon with lead weights in your shoes.”
Tomorrow, we’ll hang with the “With Friends” games, a series of word and board games that can be played competitively online.
This article is part of a series about the best games on iOS, 2008-2013. You can read the rest here.