It's all fun and games until someone gets shot in the face. Okay, for your standard iPad shooter, it's still fun and games when someone gets shot in the face. Even if that someone is a mutant or a zombie. Especially if that someone is a mutant or a zombie.
It would be hard to say the iPad has the best, most-intuitive control scheme for shooters, but then again, not having the optimal control scheme hasn't stopped shooters from being among the most popular games on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. And when a game does get the controls right, it can be a thing of beauty.
Modern Combat is to the iPad what Call of Duty is to the console. Amazing graphics, single-player story and multiplayer modes combine to make it one of the deepest shooters on the iPad. The game also features a lot of customization, with over 20,000 weapon arrangements. This is a must have for fans of Modern Warfare or Battlefield who want a similar experience on their tablet. And as an alternative to Modern Combat, there is Brothers in Arms 2, which is also by Gameloft.
Dead Space HD is a horror-action-shoter that bridges the gap between Dead Space for consoles and the upcoming sequel. Don't expect a watered down experience, this game was made from the ground up for the iPad. With fluid controls and a story that will have you pumping with adrenline as you alter from running for your life and taking it to the enemy, Dead Space HD combines gorgeous graphics and great gameplay. If you love survival horror, you will love this game.
The sequel to one of the best zombie fragfests on the iPad, Dead Trigger 2 has improved on the original. The impressive graphics rival any of the other shooters on the iPad, and a new hideout allows you to craft supplies, make explosives and upgrade items. But the core game remains mostly the same, and anyone who's a fan of zombie shooters will want to check this one out.
It's hard to believe that Max Payne is over a decade old, but the game that won so many awards when it was released is due to win one more: the test of time. What made Max Payne so great back in the day was the engrossing and sometimes quirky story combined with a Matrix-inspired bullet slow motion mode that did a better job of getting it right than other games attempting it. The game still looks pretty good considering its age, and while the controls have kinks, there are no show-stoppers.
Master Who? Okay, N.O.V.A. 2 may not quite make us forget Master Chief, but it is a great Sci-Fi shooter experience with a definite Halo feel to it. Beyond that, it is a great game and a good blueprint for how to implement a shooter on the iPad. N.O.V.A. 2 even demonstrates a unique way to deal with grenades, letting you swipe to pull a grenade throw left or right. Armored up and with plenty of weapons and customization, you'll be ready to rock the single-player campaign and then take on the multiplayer fragfest.
If you want a real fun blast from the past, the godfather of first person shooters is a nice choice. Doom wasn't the first FPS, of course, but it holds an unquestioned position as the game that really cemented the genre. The mobile version is a great buy for anyone who wants to remember the fun of their youth, or newcomers to the genre wanting to explore its history. Plus, it's still a lot of fun.
If killing zombies is your thing, why not kill Nazi zombies? While the graphics aren't quite up to some of the other titles on this list (Dead Space, Rage), the action is top notch. Taken from the zombie levels of Call of Duty: World at War, this survival shooter includes two maps, Nacht der Untoten and Zombie Verrükt . And for those who want to get their zombie killing in without paying out quite so much cash, you can check out N. Y. Zombies, which is also a quite good shooter for the iPad.
iD Software is known for punching graphics up a notch, and Rage HD is no different. An on-rails shooter set in the same world as their upcoming RPG-FPS of the same name, Rage HD is one of the most beautiful games on the iPad. As an on-rails shooter, the player won't need to worry about movement, leaving you to concentrate on your aim. And there's plenty to aim at, from mutants coming out of the walls to little targets haning everywhere. The game takes place in a futuristic (and somewhat bloodthirsty) game show, so every target will rack up you some much-needed points.
Who needs a single player experience when you can frag people? That's Archetype's take, and for anyone that has opened up their Call of Duty box, scoffed at the campain and jumped right into a Team Deathmatch, Archetype is for you. The game concentrates on the multiplayer part of being a great FPS. The multiplayer includes three modes -- Team Deathmatch, Free For All and Capture the Flag -- and you can even play some special modes like Shotgun and Missile Launcher Arena.
Who says a shooter must be in first-person or third-person mode? Gun Bros is a top-down shooter where you take on the role of either Percy or Francis Gun in their mission to protect us from Tyrannical Oppressors of Life (T.O.O.L.). And while the interfaces between missions can be somewhat annoying and confusing, the game play itself bridges a nice gap between arcade action and shooter mayhem.
It's all fun and games until someone gets shot in the face. Did I already use that line? Well, if you want to take your "shooting someone in the face" to the next level, you'll want to check out Contract Killer.
One of many free-to-play games in the iPad store using in-app purchases to drive sales, Contract Killer puts you in the shoes of... a contract killer. I know. Crazy. What's more, after your first mission, you'll get the boot as an operative and become a rogue agent, navigating a very Google Maps-like interface to find contacts and get new missions. If you love playing a sniper in games like Call of Duty, you'll definitely want to give Contract Killer a try.