Can it really have been twenty years since the landmark title Another World launched on the nearly forgotten Amiga?  According to the calender, it can.  Another World debuted on the Amiga and has conquered a variety of platforms over the years; iOS lovers should be honored to find that the game’s 20th anniversary incarnation has found its way to iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.

While the 20th anniversary of Another World brings with it a few new goodies that we’ll get into in a bit, it’s mostly notable for the authenticity of the port to iOS.  Players already familiar with the adventure will relish the chance to view the trials and triumphs of physicist Lester Knight Craykin through the crystal eye of the Retina display.  Those new to Another World will get the genuine experience in perhaps its most beautiful incarnation. Lester was clearly born to be a video game hero; it’s doubtful many of his fellow scientists possess the athleticism to endure his adventure.  Nor do Ferraris fit into most of our ideas about physicists.  Nonetheless, Lester hops into his Ferrari and heads to the lab with nary a worry.  Unbeknownst to our hero, lightening will strike while he’s exercising his brilliance in what turns out to be a less than stable experiment.  As a result, Lester finds himself trapped in a box, underwater.   Once the first challenge—not to drown—is conquered, Lester doesn’t have to wait long for a second.  He’s taken captive by a race of alien beings, and must add escaping to his list of things to do in order to return to Earth.

Lester may be more fit than the average physicist, but he’s not packing much heat—just a taser.  And he relies more upon his wits to succeed than he does on his pitiful inventory  or his lack of combat skills.  Instead, Lester will walk and run his way through stages, He accomplishes  his goals through a simple user-iterface, using touch-hold and swipes for manuevering, and taps in the corner of the screen to fire his phaser.

The simplicity of the interface does, however, highlight one aspect of the game that may irk new players.  Like many other games of its time, Another World relies on players having the patience to make (sometimes many) multple play throughs of the same scenes in order to progress.  There are save points, but not nearly enough compared to more modern games.  All in all, though, new players will be surprised by the sophistication of Another World. Considering that it’s held its edge for twenty years, hwoever, they shouldn’t be too surpised.

For veterans, the well-executed HD makeover and the additional difficulty levels are a special treat.  While visual makeovers of old games sometimes seem to tarnish the spirit of the original, Another World’s 20th anniversary HD edition is beautifully done.  A little added detail, crisper character graphics, and much better lighting enhance the original rather than cover it up.

$4.99 is a small price to pay to either relive the glory of Another World (iTunes Link) or to experience it for the first time.  The twentieth anniversary of the game is available in iTunes now, and it’s a worthy addition to any gamer’s library.

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