Why is ‘The Executive’ so evocatively gratifying? It’s artistically crude and for someone unfamiliar with Riverman Media’s previous titles, it can seem downright eccentric. Nonetheless the thematic premise is well-recognized. Disgruntled office workers turning into lycanthropes (fancy Greek-root word for werewolves) and you just happen to be at the scene with a cup of coffee and a pair of fists, if you will. Yet the stylistically austere artwork blends well with the ever prevailing corporate motif.
Regardless of the prevalent theme, this just isn’t your run of the mill fighting game.
‘The Executive’ is the perfect example of what the mobile gaming community expects in a stellar mobile gaming experience. No tilt but touch only controls, one finger controls, and swift response from controls. Although people have complained about the clunkiness of combat, this is due to their own fault of not having Speed upgraded from the Skills Menu.
If there is one thing Riverman Media should be wary of, it’s about designing the hard drive size on a more efficient level. The game is a mind-blowing 1.7 GB when installed and mind you, the iPhone is not solely a gaming platform and thus needs space for other apps as well. Another feature I could see the developers bringing onto the table is adding the iCloud sync that will allow people to revisit the game after deleting the gigantic 1.7 GB app.
Otherwise, you will be astonished at the beautiful difficulty slope. It runs parallel to your added upgrades but also your skill base. If you’re not the best gamer out there, that’s fine – the game understands. It won’t punish you, nor will it discourage you from playing each level more than once, perfecting each level. All this can happen because of you will be presented with bite-sized levels but with hard-to-master foes. As you progress, timing sequences will be harder to predict, and enemies will sport greater dislike for you, but the good news above all of this, is that you will start feeling the transition from your position as an “Intern” all the way up to the “Executive”.
From athletic Minotaur coworkers to the beam-spitting Medusa secretaries, enemy types are largely varied although they are chiefly reminiscent of legendary creatures from the Greek mythos. The plethora of these fabled foes in fact have their own attributes and react to your attacks differently that it’s in the best interest of the players to refer the ‘Bestiary’ within the game. Small features like these add value to the core game, allowing players to access vital information while pushing players to administer their own play style to each level by rewarding them with bonuses upon completion of the level.
This is where ‘The Executive’ leaps between existent genres. The game entails the bitcoin mining feature (that allows you to invest which earns you in-game currency while you are away), as well as the RPG aspect of levelling up and the obvious classic 2D combat component that everyone familiar with Mortal Kombat is accustomed to. Theoretically and usually, when games tend to go for the “best of all possible worlds” approach, things start to fall apart, planting appallingly unpleasant flaws in their gameplay experience. Yet, ‘The Executive’ somehow manages to top this without destabilizing its core value or losing its style.
Whether it parodies or glamorizes the corporate setting, ‘The Executive’ is a wonderfully executed, (pun intended, of course) on-rail side scrolling combat game with enjoyable twists borrowed from other genres that differentiates itself as its own genre – the inter-genre.
Games like ‘The Executive’ and bignic’s ‘Zombies’ (aka Corporate Lifestyle Simulator) exist in effort to renovate unimaginative parts of our lives. Put it simply, to create an alternative reality. Because for a lot of us, reality is a burden. Yet we aren’t giving up on it because it’s rather amusing to paint over it with our own adaptations and equally inspiring to see others do it as well. Besides, all of us have an innate vocation to express and create.