Aspyr didn't have to change a lot to get the touchscreen to work. Technically, KOTOR (as it's called) does run in real-time, but the combat (which was also designed for a controller on the original Xbox, don't forget) can be paused at any time, which makes it more or less turn-based, and thus perfect for the often imprecise touchscreen.
Aspyr has added buttons and a queue interface for your abilities, and put a lot of thought into how everything should work, which means that if you think pressing on something will line up a skill to use or move your character around, you're probably right. You can simply tap to change characters, tap to activate skills, and then unpause your combat to let things run their course.
Moving is easy, too – you can tap on any object in the environments to move around, or drag your finger forward or back for surprisingly responsive movement controls. The dialog screen is where Aspyr has made the biggest change: It has added actual touch buttons to the dialog choices, as the original lines would have been too small on screen and hard to hit. But even this works well: The buttons are in prime place for your right thumb, and it's easy to build the muscle memory to choose correctly.
Aside from the new touchscreen controls, everything else is still here from the original. There's a deep character creation system, the light/dark side morality system that would eventually heavily influence Mass Effect
, and just hours and hours of excellent stories and character, all portrayed with perfectly tuned Star Wars
dialog (HK-47, if you've never met him, is one of the best droids of all time). The graphics do look like they were made in 2003, because, you know, they were. But the draw here is the story and the experience, and the graphics don't hold either of those back.
Aspyr has done a great job here, and delivered a truly classic experience to the iPad with gusto. $9.99 is a premium price for an iPad app, but this is a premium game if ever there was one, and if you're interested in playing Knights of the Old Republic
(or just interested in playing it again), loading this one on to your iPad is worth every penny.