Okay disclaimer time: I’m not an App person. My normal phone set up is one game (Fruit Ninja) and a bunch of boring old lady choices like Dictionary.com’s app and a detailed map of the transit system of NYC. So am I at all qualified to review indy developer Grubby Hands’ new game David Haye’s Knockout? Yes, yes I am.
The new App by Grubby Hands features David “The Hayemaker” Haye, who, according to Google, is a saucy, sometimes retired, British boxing champ. You play as Haye and can face 3 opponents, D.Boy, Big Bro, and Little Bro. The controls are very simple with four tap buttons controlling different punches, swipes controlling dodges, and a shake for taunting the your opponent. By successfully beating the shit out of the other boxer and dodging his attacks, you charge your “Hayemaker” bar which can up the power of your punches. Do well enough and your knock out punch will generate a cool fatality that results in the decapitation of your opponent. I searched high and low to see if Haye was known for chopping off heads at the conclusion of his matches and came up with nada. Too bad, the excellent poor taste of the game would have increased 10 fold if that bit had been based in reality.
The graphics of the game are pretty simple, but the controls are responsive with little to no lag, which I’ll take over fancy, frustratingly slow graphics any day. It’s a quickly beat game, with even my worst matches averaging in at under a minute. Your opponents do get noticeably and progressively more difficult to defeat, but there’s only three of them and knocking them all out shouldn’t take longer than 5 minutes once the you get a hang of the controls and their tells. The real objective of the game is to unlock all the various achievements and earn your belt, rather than to just beat up the three chumps available to you.
My main complaint with the game was that it was way too easy. I unlocked 80 percent of the achievements in a hour and the even the most difficult to beat boxer could be knocked out in under 30 seconds with barely anything more advanced than a button masher’s strategy. Plus, there’s no way to lose! To test this, I turned on the game and put my phone down to watch Haye get the shit kicked out of him for over two minutes with no retaliation. All that resulted was that the screen tinted red (or just faded black from lack of being used). Now, I may know little and less about boxing, but I think that getting punched repeatedly for an infinite amount of time, even for the great David Haye (whoever the hell he is), should result in a gooey death, or at the very least, a loss.
Now, 4 of the achievements remained elusive to myself and Mr. Haye, but by using highly complex and advanced mathematical projections, I bet I’d have the whole thing licked in under a week of semi-attention during train rides or waiting in line at Starbucks. I hope the developer will allow for additional opponents in future updates as well as achievements to make the game more worth the money and precious GB space on my phone. Personally, a 99cents for an app with the potential to keep me entertained for a few days is worth it, but if it’s not for you, pass on David Haye’s Knockout.
Check out our review of Grubby Hands’ other title, Boy Loves Girl