Poor controls make violent but bloodless app not so super.

What parents need to know

Ease of play

Superman's direction is controlled by a left thumbstick, and his attack and speed boost are controlled with two buttons on the right. However, his flying speed and direction can be very difficult to control, as is the direction of his heat vision. The Help section merely gives a one-screen description of the various on-screen elements, without explaining how scoring works.


Superman flies around, being attacked by bad guys and robots, and attacking them back. There is no blood, but there are guns and lasers, and buildings catch on fire. Superman also can fly into enemies, punch them, or shoot them with his heat vision.

Not applicable
Not applicable

Players who sign into Crystal for leaderboards and achievements will see ads for other apps by the developer, with links directly to the App Store.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Some privacy concerns. Players can opt in to Crystal, an interactive network that allows users to upload real avatar photos, create a profile, set location, post scores on leaderboards, add friends, post status messages, and connect with Facebook friends or Twitter followers. The Crystal privacy policy states that it may collect and use information including name, email address, a phone’s Unique Device ID, and IP address. Crystal gives users the option to disagree to terms and conditions, after which new personal data will not be stored on their servers. This will reduce the functionality of the Crystal network for the user. Users can opt in to Game Center to track achievements instead; it does not have connections to other social media within the app.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Superman is an arcade-style game in which players control Superman as he battles Lex Luthor and keeps Metropolis safe. The game optionally uses Crystal or Game Center to track achievements and high scores. The game includes violence but no blood, with a lot of shooting and punching. Controls are difficult to use.

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SUPERMAN puts you in the role of the Man of Steel, fighting off Lex Luthor's minions and machines, and keeping Metropolis safe from burglars, fires, and falling meteors. Each of the game's levels consists of a few waves of threats, followed by an "Alert!" stating one more threat that needs to be dealt with. At the end, of course, you face down Lex Luthor himself in a Kryptonite-powered weapon suit.

The game does have something of a story, shown in comic-book scenes, but there are only four scenes total, and most of the levels don't seem to directly apply to the story. The game's biggest weakness, though, is the control scheme. It can be difficult to fly Superman in the direction you want him to go, and it's hard to figure out when the Boost will make him really fast or just sort of fast. There isn't much of a help section to explain how scoring works, and the game becomes pretty repetitive except for the last battle.

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
Release date:November 17, 2011
Category:Arcade Games
Size:12.50 MB
Publisher:Chillingo Ltd.
Minimum software requirements:iOS 4.0 or later

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