Randall Enzo is no Commander Shepard. First of all, heâ€™s a man; you have no control over what he looks or sounds like, or even whether heâ€™s a biotic user or straight gun-slinger. Randall is a jack-of-all-trades mercenary for Cerberus, and a killing machine. He also glows.
The plot for Infiltrator is separate but parallel to the Mass Effect 3 storyline (though, as I havenâ€™t played ME3, I canâ€™t say how much they overlap). Randall is collecting aliens (Turians especially) for Cerberus experimentation. Early in the game, he realises this type of work might be evil - coincidentally when the station Director kidnaps his girlfriend - and turns against Cerberus, fighting his way to save her and escape the station.
The gameplay for Infiltrator is good, although tricky to master. The right side of the screen controls your vision and the left side your movement; the implementation has been done better than any other first / third person shooter Iâ€™ve played on the iPad so far.
Taking cover is the key to the fight sequences, just as it is in the other versions of Mass Effect. The simplified system for the iPad means you just have run into the cover and Randall will duck behind it. Swiping left, right, or forward will send Randall to the next piece of cover. Be warned, the AI is smarter than youâ€™d expect and they will flank you.
To shoot at an enemy, you tap them and Randall starts shooting; you use the right-side controls to control where youâ€™re shooting (indicated by crosshairs). This does take you out of cover though, so to duck again you need to swipe down on the left side, this took me a little while to learn how to do fluidly.
You can also become invisible using the cloaking button in the bottom right. Oddly, your enemies will not see you - even if you are shooting them in the face. Your biotic powers (found in the top right) slow down time when you use them, so you donâ€™t get too shot up when selecting an enemy to throw around.
The game is broken into fight sequences. After each one, youâ€™re given a star-based ranking from one to three for style, time, and health, and you are ranked as either Rookie, Soldier, or Veteran based on the number of total stars achieved. This ranking is the basis for how many credits you receive from the battle.
The credits can be used in the store to buy new armour, weapons, biotics, and abilities, or to upgrade the ones youâ€™ve already got. You can also buy helmets to make Randall look tough, although also obscuring his implants that glow blue or red depending on your paragon or renegade choices. The other way to get credits is to collect intel. Some enemies drop intel packages when they die; these can be swapped for credits or uploaded to the Galaxy at War system in Mass Effect 3.
When I first started playing Infiltrator, the controls were confusing and the images seemed jerky and odd. As I progressed, and got better at the controls, the whole felt more intuitive and I really began enjoying it. Donâ€™t expect immersive gameplay across hundreds of worlds with long dialogue trees, this game is strictly run-and-gun. While this means it doesnâ€™t feel exactly like a Mass Effect game, it does make it fun and exciting on the iPad.
Finally, and this may be inconsequential to the game, or indeed the entire Mass Effect universe, but why are there so many Australians in space?