We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Games software Reviews
15,512 Reviews

Risk for iPad review

£3.99 inc VAT

Manufacturer: EA

Our Rating: We rate this 3 out of 5

Risk: The Official Game for iPad is a faithful recreation of the board game - but it feels like a missed opportunity.

Risk: The Official Game for iPad is a faithful recreation of the board game - but it feels like a missed opportunity.

There's a curious tradition in the App Store where the official licensed iOS version of a beloved game tends to get one-upped by an unheralded rival. Think how Scrabble has wound up playing second-fiddle to Words With Friends. Or Skee-Ball - it’s a fine game and all, but savvy iOS gamers prefer Ramp Champ.

The tradition lives on with the iPad release of Risk. Electronic Arts has done a decent job of bringing the classic board game of global conquest to Apple's tablet. But Risk isn't going to make you forget about Affogato's demonstrably superior Strategery any time soon.

Like the iPhone version before it, EA's iPad implementation of Risk is a faithful recreation of the board game. You can opt to either manually select the territories your army possesses or have the game randomly assign you territories. Then, when its your turn, you draft new troops, attack your enemies, and fortify your holdings, as you attempt to conquer the world one territory at a time. You can play up to five computerised opponents or five human rivals via pass-and-play mode. You can also take on human opponents via local Wi-Fi or Bluetooth; that mode supports up to four players. A host of options let you customise the game to your liking.

GamePro

Risk manages to pull off the rare feat of slavishly recreating the board game on the iPad while, at the same time, missing some of the little details and likely irking the game's most ardent fans. For starters, none of the territories feature the old Risk labels, so current generations will miss the thrill of battling over the likes of Irkutsk, Yakutsk and Kamchatka. Risk for the iPad also uses soldiers to represent the game pieces, not the Roman numerals I grew up using with my old Risk board game. What purpose do Roman numerals serve if not to use them to assemble massive Risk armies and identify the copyright dates for major films?

Risk for iPad

Armed Forces: The Blue army and the Purple army clash in Siam with the tap of a button

If you're going to replace my beloved Roman numerals with toy soldiers, at least use those icons to liven up the battles in Risk. Alas, apart from some cool sound effects and a stirring music track, there's very little effort put into the skirmishes - you tap a button, you hear some gunshots, and the obliterated army disappears from the map. There are no animations, no graphical flourishes, and no evidence of any creativity. This is a consistent theme throughout Risk, which fails to use the iPad's touch interface for all that it's worth. Get ready to do a lot of tapping... and not much else.

It is hard to play Risk on your iPad and not come to the conclusion that the very similar Strategery handles nearly every aspect of gameplay better. Strategery doesn't limit you to local online play. It uses randomly generated maps to keep the game interesting and challenging. (So much for my strategy of using the countries of Oceania as my base of operations.) And if you own multiple iOS devices, Strategery comes in a single version that runs on both the iPhone and the iPad. Electronic Arts offers separate versions of Risk for the Apple's assorted iOS devices.

Risk for iPad Expert Verdict »
Compatible with APple iPad
requires iOS 3.2 or later
  • Overall: We give this item 6 of 10 overall

Risk for the iPad isn't a bad game - just an uninspired one. Devoted fans of the board game will doubtlessly be pleased just to have an iPad iteration. But I find myself dwelling on how the developer really missed an opportunity to take Risk in an exciting new direction on a device that should inspire innovation.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
  • Age of Conquest Lite review

    Age of Conquest Lite

    Age of Conquest Lite is a fun military strategy game with a fair amount of depth.

  • World In War for iPhone review

    World In War for iPhone

    World in War, a turn-based multiplayer online strategy game for the Apple iPhone, allows players to control armies in a World War II combat scenario.

  • Best iPad Apps book review

    Best iPad Apps book

    Best iPad Apps: The Guide for Discriminating Downloaders gathers over 200 of the very best iPad apps across a range of categories.

  • Apple iPad mini vs iPad 4 tablet comparison review

    Apple iPad mini vs iPad 4 tablet comparison

    For the first time ever Apple announced two iPads in one go, the iPad mini and iPad 4 or iPad with Retina display. If you want to know the difference between the iPads then you’ve come to the right place so here’s our iPad mini vs iPad 4 comparison review.

  • Autumn Dynasty for iPad and iPhone review

    Autumn Dynasty for iPad and iPhone

    Autumn Dynasty for iPad and iPhone brings the hugely successful Total War strategy games into your pocket. Read our full review to find out more.


IDG UK Sites

Chromecast deals aplenty as gadget turns one: Discounts and free music streaming

IDG UK Sites

Apple updates MacBook Pro line-up: Price cuts & spec boosts for 6 MacBook Pro models

IDG UK Sites

Introducing generation tech

IDG UK Sites

5 ways drones are being used for good