If you were asked about musicians and bands that are likely to lend their work to a mobile game, Iron Maiden probably isn't the first name you'd think of. I'd expect someone like Will.i.am to do it, but Iron Maiden? It'd be a long list before I got to them.
But the band now has its own turn-based RPG, and it's actually not that surprising when you think about it. Eddie, the band's long-time mascot, is instantly recognisable to fans and non-fans alike, and has been around for over 36 years. Iron Maiden having an RPG that features him ends up making more sense than if its contemporaries.
Could you imagine an AC/DC RPG featuring a school-uniform-clad Angus Young? Actually yes, but it would be a much harder sell since it doesn't make anywhere near as much sense. So Iron Maiden: Legacy of the Beast is a thing, and it's completely mental - in a wonderful kind of way.
So you take on the role of Eddie, who's had his soul stolen and broken into a ridiculous number of pieces by a demonic cult. That means he has fight his way across multiple hellish worlds to retrieve them, battling members of said demonic cult along the way.
Gameplay-wise, it's nothing overly groundbreaking. The whole game functions as a mix of cutscenes and battles, and the battles should feel familiar to anyone who's ever played a turn-based RPG before. You have your team, the enemies have their teams, and you take it turns to attack each other. The attacks are fairly limited, but as a rule each character in your party has one basic attack, and one special ability (which costs extra energy to perform). Eddie himself has a extra-special attack that can only use once a battle at most. Like a lot of these types of games, regular attacks also have timing bonuses and the better your timing the more damage you'll do. Simple stuff, and it lends well to the whole lack-of-a-controller system smartphones and tablets have.
The characters in your party are really quite random. For a person fighting demonic entities, Eddie keeps some strange company. The first lot of characters you unlock include an undead dog/wolf creature made of blue flame, and a green golem. I also unlocked the possessed headdress of a Pharaoh, and some demonic dice. I don't know who came up with these ideas, but they must have been taking something pretty powerful.
Naturally the main draw of this game is that the soundtrack is composed by Iron Maiden. It's always playing in the background, so if they're the kind of band you enjoy listening to, that's going to make it much more enjoyable than your typical mobile game. If you hate metal music of all kinds, well, you're going to hate this. But that should go without saying really.
Be well aware that this is a free to play game, and with it come the typical freemium game mechanics. The game insists you don't have to spend any money to play through everything, but those who do will clearly be at an advantage. Case in point: the game's 'Sands of Time'.
The Sands of Time are basically action points that you have to spend every time you play a level - a feature that lots of mobile games employ (Candy Crush comes to mind). Once you run out of the points, you have to wait for them to replenish (one point every three minutes). Naturally, if you buy more with in-game currency (which itself can be bought with real money) you can skip all the waiting.
The economy of the game uses something called Ironite (wonder where they got that name from?) which can be used to buy souls and gold - both of which are needed to buy new characters and abilities. You earn some of this every time you finish a level, but naturally you can pay between £2.49 and £80 to obtain more without all the grinding. From the looks of how things in the in-game store are priced, if you choose not to hand over any cash you're going to need to do a lot of grinding to get a decent number of upgrades.
Legacy of the Beast is a strange game, there's no denying it, but if you're a fan of Iron Maiden then it's one you might want to give a try. Just be prepared to put a lot of time or money into it. It's implied that at you'll have to fight the devil at the end as well, so if you've always wanted to do that here's your chance.