I downloaded iGibbets, sat down, and proceeded to play through every single one of the 30 levels provided. On one hand, this shows the developers nailed the fun-factor and this makes it worth the price of admission. On the other hand, it shows how fleeting the experience is and that the outcry for additional content will ring out across the land (although you can activate Hard Mode, which seems to be replaying the same levels, but with fewer arrows in your quiver).

Each level presents the player with several poor souls hanging from gibbets, soon to be executed. It’s the player’s job to “save” the victims, by shooting each noose with an arrow. If a stray arrow or two happen to graze one of these fellows…hey, it’s better than dying, good sir knight. To sever the cords, the player simply presses the convenient bow and arrow icon, drags it to set angle and distance, and then releases to let it fly. Arrows are a valuable commodity in this line of work, so the player is sometimes presented with a powerup that provides three additional arrows when shot. For those hard to reach places, a ricochet powerup can be shot, which bounces the arrow in a predetermined direction.

Sometimes, the player must shoot down a stack of boxes in order to take aim at the vict…uhh, rope…the rope…the one that suspends the victim. I mean…shooting directly at the guy would just be sadistic…*nervous laughter*. Anyway, these stacks of crates may seem out of place, but after a little research, I found that this practice is somewhat historically accurate. Executioners would oftentimes stack boxes at various locations near the gallows, in order to prevent some sissyboy from spoiling a perfectly good execution by “saving” the victim with a well-placed shot.

The physics model is good, the challenge is adequate, and let’s face it, piercing a guy in the neck…and then the elbow…and then the ankle is just inherently fun! I don’t think anyone would dispute that, particularly when the target is hanging from a noose; now that is Comedy Gold, “Arterial Sprays for 200, Trebek.” In fact, the overall experience this title provides is so real and so compelling that it may even serve as a safe outlet for people who enjoy shooting criminals down from the gallows, in real life.

To the potential naysayers, let me assure you, no actual prison inmates on death row were harmed during the filming this video game.

Rating: ★★★½☆ icon


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