When it comes to movie videogames, developers have the choice to go the G-Force/ Avatar route and make a game that’s compelling on its own, or they can take the Kick-Ass approach and release a steaming pile of refuse and hope the name brand brings in the sales. The Green Hornet for iOS opts for the latter route. And while it’s not as unplayable as Kick-Ass, it is a rushed, clunky, wholly unimaginative cash-in.
The Green Hornet is a top-down driving combat game. You control the decked-out Black Beauty, and your goal is to blow up gang cars as you drive through the city. Between missions, Kato gives you a growing arsenal of weapons, but none of them are as good as your starting machine gun, so he really needn’t bother.
Bringing peace to the neighborhood, one explosion at a time.
As you progress through the 15 short missions, you’ll want to avoid civilians and police cars. The police, who trail after you, totally ignoring the trigger-happy gang members, might be a problem if they weren’t toothless. They’re unarmed, so they just bump into you, trying to get you to stop. You get arrested if you let them touch you for about five seconds, but this will almost never happen.
The game contains only one metropolitan environment, and the 15 missions barely differ from one another. You’ll have to defend a neighborhood and trail a thug once in a while, but mostly you’re just blowing up gang cars. Interspersed between missions you’ll occasionally be subjected to a minigame that pits Kato against a thug in hand-to-hand combat. All you have to do is tilt, tap, and swipe on command to win. It’s a cheerless minigame, and– to make matters worse– the tilt controls almost never work.
As a matter of fact, the controls overall are clunky and unresponsive. With all the times we got stuck on the corners of buildings and struggled to make three-point turns, it felt like we were taking a maneuverability test in a semi truck. But even the crippled controls don’t make the game challenging. We beat the whole thing in less than an hour and only died once.
In the game’s defense, we’re glad that it’s a universal app (although the d-pad placement on the iPad is less than ideal), and that it contains great-looking unlockable comic book panels that walk you through the early plot developments of the movie. Still, those things don’t make this lackluster effort worth your time.
If you’re still not convinced, try the game for yourself. The first five missions are free, with the next 10 missions available as an in-app purchase. But don’t say we didn’t warn you.