Mage Gauntlet by Rocketcat Games icon

Mage Gauntlet ($1.99) by Rocketcat Games is a role-playing game (RPG) for the iPhone (iOS) that is designed to look and play like the classic 90′s RPGs we all love (think: Link to the Past or Secret of Mana).

Mage Gauntlet by Rocketcat Games screenshot

You play as Lexi, a magic immune outcast in a world of wizards and sorcerers. She was born unable to wield magic, in fact, any time she would touch it, it would explode in her face. She is troubled by this and begins her journey to find out more about her inability to do magic.

Lexi sets out to find the infamous Whitebeard, a wizard who cast out all the demons of the land long ago, including Hurgoth, the most powerful one of all. She had hoped Whitebeard could help her with her anti-magic affliction, so she trekked to his castle to ask for assistance.

When Whitebeard was finally convinced to speak to her, he offered to help and gave her a special gauntlet to wear which allows her to wield magic powers. The wizard then sends Lexi to seek out the guardian wizards and help protect the lands from the demons trying to break the spell and inhabit the world once again.

So here begins your journey. Explore the world of Mage Gauntlet as you see what’s in store for Lexi. It seems the fate of the lands rests in her hands … er, gauntlet.

The controls are a delight to work with. You have many directional options, but being able to utilize the invisible dPad flawlessly with your left hand while having your right free to press the attack button (to use your weapon and spells) is easy and enjoyable.

The fact that you can touch most anywhere on the left hand side of the screen to move really makes it easy to control Lexi and attack simultaneously. Right above the attack button, there is also a dash button, and of course a menu button with more options and where you can access your spells.

Mage Gauntlet has full Game Center and OpenFeint support. In fact, one of the first achievements I received was — because I was already feeling like I was playing Zelda — “No Rupees Here.” You know, after I had smashed open every single barrel and vase I could find. Not to mention the many minutes I spent cutting down shrubberies with my sword. But … nothing. Bummer.

But, wait! Eventually, you’ll find glowing vases; you’ll want to smash these open as they contain the magic to fuel your gauntlet and aid you in battle. Finally, your Link-like behavior will no longer go unrewarded!

The cute, and at times humorous, storyline will keep you interested and involved. Though most RPGs can be a bit tedious, Mage Gauntlet tries to avoid this. It focuses on engaging and fast-paced gameplay instead of sending you off on useless quests where you must kill X boars to move on. It centralizes on the journey and storyline more than anything else, which is quite refreshing when it comes to iOS RPGs.

There are 84 levels to get through and, along your way, you can collect the many hats and pets that can add to your stats, along with equipping armor and items you find inside of chests and elsewhere.

The music is kind of techno-esque, electronic with a good beat. As previously noted, this game takes inspiration from the 16-bit RPGs from the SNES days and the graphics follow suit. I can almost hear myself blowing out the Secret of Mana cartridge, now.

Mage Gauntlet by Rocketcat Games screenshot

Mage Gauntlet is available in the App Store for $1.99 until Saturday. Buyers that get it after Saturday will have to pay the full price of $2.99.

Not only do you get a discount for purchasing the app right away, but but buyers that get it before Monday get the Rocketcat fan pack, which includes eight hats from their previous games and a special pet that gives you a stat bonus.

Currently, Mage Gauntlet is only available for the iPhone, but it will be made universal in the next update, so ready your iPads for the quest! In the mean time — what are you waiting for? — pick this amazing RPG up now! Go!

And don’t forget to check out the gameplay video: