Our monthly review roundups had been on hiatus since we started scoring games on the fly, as the purpose they served previously was to assign scores to all the games we had reviewed that month in a fairly complicated scoring scheme that totally made sense at the time. I swear. Regardless, here's the best games we reviewed in the month of August. Keep in mind you can view all of our 5 star and 4.5 star games via category sorting. Similarly, you can see all of these "best of" roundups by clicking the Best iPhone Games category. Eventually, I also plan on filling in the backlog of months we missed, so that particular category should get way more useful in the not too distant future.

Additionally, if you haven't already, give the TouchArcade app [Free] a download. It's free, and you'll get push alerts when we post articles like these and other things related to five star games. Cool, right?

5 Stars

Bastion, $4.99
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - The universally loved XBLA/PC action RPG Bastion shocked us with a surprise iPad release. This game is absolutely amazing for multiple reasons, but my favorite has to be the near-constant narration that sets an incredible mood for the game that is nearly unrivaled on the App Store.

The World Ends with You: Solo Remix, $17.99 / HD
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - A fantastic single-screen port of the Nintendo DS game The World Ends With You. You play as the amnesiac Neku, a boy with a hatred for the masses and an unusual predicament. Unlike others, who come and go as they please, you're trapped in Shibuya, a pawn in the Reaper's Game. It's a game you're going to have to play. Failure to do so will result in erasure. This isn't the quick 99¢ iOS game you're used to, this is a serious full-length game with incredible depth.

Mikey Shorts, $1.99
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - BeaverTap Games knocked it out of the park with their first game ever, Mikey Shorts. Great virtual controls combine with a game that feels "just right" for obsessive speed runs and time sharing. Created by two hardcore gamers, Mikey Shorts ticks every checkbox a good iOS platformer needs to have and shouldn't be missed.

4.5 Stars

Walking Dead: The Game, Free
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - Telltale's latest point and click adventure game may be its strongest yet. Set in the fantastic Walking Dead universe and filled with tons of choices that can have a drastic impact on the game, it's something everyone needs to try. Also, check out our review, we're updating it as new episodes launch, and the second episode just hit today.

Supermagical, Free
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - The latest game from the Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team is every bit as radical as their studio name. It's a neat spin on the Bust-a-Move formula with super magical (as the name might hint) spells you can execute as well as a whole host of light RPG elements.

One Tap Hero™, $4.99
[Review] - [Forum Thread] - A clever platformer from Chillingo that centralizes around a single button control scheme, as the title hints. It has some heavy influences from the endless runner genre while feeling fresh enough to stand on its own. Overall, it's really cool how they packed such a "complete" feeling platformer into such a simple package.

Super Mole Escape, Free
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - Another awesome title from Adult Swim, this one puts you in charge of helping a mole (and more unlockable moles) escape prison. Its gameplay is fairly standard for a endless vertical (insert action here) game, but the integration of multiplayer races via Game Center really puts Super Mole Escape ahead of the pack.

Trigger Fist, Free
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - Although the whole modern military shooter thing has been done to death on consoles, few quality entries in that particular aisle of the App Store exist. Trigger Fist does a fantastic job of feeling like the "right fit" for the iPhone with an interesting camera angle and a control scheme that makes aiming and shooting in massive online fire fights substantially easier.

Organ Trail: Director's Cut, $2.99
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - An incredibly creative zombie-centric spin on the classic versions of Oregon Trail. We really enjoyed the whole atmosphere of the game, the strangely cinematic opening, and putting down members of our party that manage to catch a wicked case of the zombification.

Gasketball™, Free
[Review] - [TA Plays] - [Forum Thread] - The awesome combination of the incredibly popular see-if-you-can-get-three-stars physics game genre and... Basketball! The game comes with enough free content to choke a horse, much to the detriment of sales. We outlined what you get for your $2.99 unlock to make things a little more clear regarding just what Gasketball has to offer.

Bitless, $0.99
[Review] - [Forum Thread] - A delightfully blocky chiptune-laden retro-ish platformer that comes packed with a brutal difficulty level. Nissa nailed it in our review of the game: "This is a precision platformer perfectly tuned for its platform—it can't help that I'm not tuned for it. You'll either need to be very skilled, up for a good challenge or a bit of a masochist to enjoy this game, but hey, that covers a lot of people."

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000550362553 Klas Segeljakt

    So a port gets spot number 1? how original.

    • http://www.facebook.com/mathlaflamme Mathieu Laflamme

      The game itself is quite original, though : you should give it a try!

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000550362553 Klas Segeljakt

        I would if I still had my iPad, it was stolen >,<

        I might check it out for PC though.

      • theundertow

        Ahhh...now the anger makes sense. Sorry to hear - hope you get a new one (or the mini) soon...

    • http://toucharcade.com Eli Hodapp

      The games are listed in reverse chronological order of when the review was posted. There is no "number 1." With that being said, Bastion is amazing and if you're raging against it because it's a port you're doing yourself (and anyone who listens to you) a massive disservice.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000550362553 Klas Segeljakt

        whatever, this is pointless.

      • http://toucharcade.com Eli Hodapp

        Quit bein' mad about video games.


      • Superatomic

        What about horn?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000550362553 Klas Segeljakt

        Go and drink your protein shakes and stop bein' mad about people bein' mad about video games.

      • http://modmyi.com/forums/iphone-4-new-skins-themes-launches/740147-neurotech-hd.html#post5637502 Jay

         Worst comeback ever. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000550362553 Klas Segeljakt

        well, it wasn't ment to be succesful

      • http://www.facebook.com/ian.vischansky Ian Vischansky

         Hey Klas... what's going on in your life?  Do you need to talk with someone?

      • Jan Rameken

        As pointless as saying "whatever" on the internet, you mean?

    • http://twitter.com/Rage_boi Vince

      A good game is a good game on any platform...why do you have an issue with the game just because it is a port? It is also not surprising that many of the 'best' game on the ios are ports too ... but they are just as enjoyable as some(very few) of the original and unique ios games that feel really native to the platform though (not those wannabe 'console quality' games)

      • Superatomic

        He has a issue because he feels a port is kind of a cheat. It's not an original iOS product. In theory you could port over every good game from NES, SNES, Genesis,PC etc, and have those compete against an original game made for iOS.

        Is it fair to have iOS developers up against ports.. Not sure.. I'm on the fence about it.
        Doesn't change the fact they are great games tho.

    • theundertow

      For the record, some of us never played it on the other consoles (even though I have them collecting dust)...ie the "unoriginal port" of Bastion.

      I can't even imagine using the touch control on my big screen....oh wait...you can't with those versions?

      How unoriginal.

      Ports are across ALL Consoles and a nature of the Game Industry beast - don't be a hater.

      I went out on a limb (in $5 iOS speak) and its by far one of the best iOS games, which is what we're talking about here.

      • http://www.gamegent.com/ Game Gent

        I agree. Games are usually released across multiple platforms. The iPad is just another platform.

        Typically, a port is software that is adapted to work in an environment in which it wasn't originally intended. Code is "carried" over. Supergiant games statements have suggested otherwise. They said Bastion was re-created for the iPad and to work with touch controls. If re-created means re-written, then it's not a port.

        In any case, Bastian feels comfortable on the iPad, it's an excellent game, and because it was released for the iPad, it deserves to be on the best iOS game list.

  • http://www.facebook.com/andy.charalambous.714 Andy Charalambous

    Glad to see this back, it was missed!

    And the TouchArcade app is amazing, I wouldn't have found the game 'Tampon Toss' without it..


  • Superatomic

    You forgot final fantasy dimensions you jerks.

    • Greyskull

      How so? Is the meat of the game even able to be downloaded yet?

      • ducksFANjason

        Yes it is, but I agree that they haven't forgotten it for 2 reasons:

        1. The game is only partially reviewed due to the IAP store issue (which as I mentioned is recently fixed)

        2. What little of the game HAS been reviewed didn't receive great scores, and this article is, after all, about the month's BEST reviewed games.

  • Tuff Tiger

    im still waitin for street fighter x tekken

    • https://me.yahoo.com/rekzkarz#a0df5 REkzkaRZ

      You mean waiting for a completely redundant game to play on iOS?  You're upset b/c there aren't the 'amazing' "bash your friend in the face" games on iOS?  Gotcha.

  • TGMzero

    Where is Horn???

    That game blows nearly every 4.5 game on this list out of the water!

    • Superatomic

      You make a good point .. Horn should definitely be on this list

    • http://modmyi.com/forums/iphone-4-new-skins-themes-launches/740147-neurotech-hd.html#post5637502 Jay

      Horn is way overrated in my opinion.  It's imaginative, sure, but the mechanics and gameplay are so bland.  And I can't help but feel they borrowed HEAVILY from Ico.

      • TGMzero

        I'm not very familiar with Ico, but from what I remember, the kid in that game was rescuing a girl from shadow creatures.

        Outside of the kid himself, there's really no other similarities.

        If anything, it's like Infinity Blade and Shadow of the Colossus. And that's more combat and enemy wise. Maybe partly story.

        The reason I feel Horn should be on this list is because it takes the best elements of those two games and puts them together and make it work. Could it be better? Hell yeah it could! Adding combos would go a long way with making the combat better. But as it stands, it's still a great game for a good price.

        The price. The graphics. The music. The story. The voices.

        Those things combined make for a great experience. Easily better than the other games on this list in the 4.5 category.

        I mean c'mon, Super Mole Escape and Supermagical??? These are simply re skinned versions of games that came out twenty or more years ago.

      • http://modmyi.com/forums/iphone-4-new-skins-themes-launches/740147-neurotech-hd.html#post5637502 Jay

         I guess it all depends on what you compare it against.  If you compare it against iOS games collectively then yeah, it rates higher.  I'm just comparing it against how much fun I had with it and how long it kept my attention, which is not much and not long.

        I don't think it borrows from SotC much at all.  Perhaps the camera mechanics are closer to SotC, but the story and atmosphere is like 90% ICO.  Boy with one horn traversing ruins and fighting spirits and magical beasts while uncovering the mystery of a curse - that's far too close for comfort. 

        I don't like crapping all over my memories of terrific games - but if you've never played (loved) ICO then yeah, Horn is a pretty good deal 🙂 

  • rodgerodger

    I wish people didn't give Bastion a perfect 5-stars. It's a good game, but it's also vastly inferior to the PC version. Which I just feels pushes the myth that in general iOS games are inferior to PC/console games:( 

    • JackMule

      They are though =P (at least generally speaking),

    • JBRUU

      How the hell is it "vastly inferior"? The controls work beautifully and the game itself looks better with a retina display than it does on any computer.

  • B.utthead

    WTF Square Enix?
    Bastion is way cheaper than TWEWY, and it is bot a handheld game.....
    Seriously? Well deserved the five stars for Bastion.

  • araczynski

    guess everyone has a different idea of what is 'best'.  i wouldn't put a buck towards any of those.  except perhaps walking dead, but i detest episodic anything even more than 'freemium'.

    • https://me.yahoo.com/rekzkarz#a0df5 REkzkaRZ

      Agreed.  I would put the $ towards DungeonRaid over these.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_VG32DHEW4DDCCFRQALBYWZ73G4 Bob

    These best of the month posts are far more valuable than the incessant self-absorbed "TA Plays" posts.

    • http://www.facebook.com/ian.vischansky Ian Vischansky

       To counter this comment, I enjoy them.  Whenever my interest is piqued enough to look more into a game, I enjoy watching gameplay from the TA guys.

    • http://modmyi.com/forums/iphone-4-new-skins-themes-launches/740147-neurotech-hd.html#post5637502 Jay

      If you smoked weed you'd understand it better 🙂

      • https://me.yahoo.com/rekzkarz#a0df5 REkzkaRZ

        is that why your name is "Jay"?

  • http://twitter.com/back2this Sean Yuan

    About time TA started doing these articles again!


  • Benegesserit

    Please do iPhone only and iPad only. WAY more people have the smaller devices than the big tablet and bunching them all together really only benefits the small % that have both. It's really frustrating to see so many iPhone games and one title sneaking in that is platform exclusive (which honestly deserves to lose a mark for not porting when it's less intense control-wise than TWEWY).

  • Spamstic

    If only you didn't allow that dumb squids game a 5 star review these would be ok.

    But you're still saying that squids2 game is better than walking dead!?

    ON a Level  with Bastion!!? That won how many Independent game awards??  I dont think so.

    • http://twitter.com/Rage_boi Vince

      Different genres bro. There are lots of different reviewers including some freelancers at TA so the yardstick used for reviewing is not universal or even remotely consistent.

    • https://me.yahoo.com/rekzkarz#a0df5 REkzkaRZ

      I'd agree, tho. I tried the Squids thing (came out for free) & I kept thinking to myself, "HOW did TA give this game a high rating?!?!?"  If it's a 'kids under 10" 5 star review, maybe it needs some kind of disclaimer?

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.thill.75 Jonathan Thill

    This has been a fantastic month for iOS. Yes, Horn should be on the list, as it is worthy of pulling out of the rest of the pile, but TA probably forgot it came out this month with so much other good stuff. Just to remind you, GOF 2 HD and NOVA 3 both went to 0.99, Horn, Squenix titles, Bastion, Trigger Fist (came out and went FREE), Mikey Shorts, and more ALL happened within the 31 days of August. What a month, even if you limit yourself to $15 or $20, there is so much quality gaming!

  • Himmat Singh

    Bastion is really great looking...I take 5 stars from TA to be something of a great achievement. Surprised Horn doesn't get at least 4.5 stars. I have rated it 3.5, but that's mostly because of a poor Android optimization. 

    PS: Eli, any chance you could respond to me?

  • mekman96

    Hey, Listen! Glu made an update to Blood and Glory (called Blood and Glory Legend) and it's slicker looking than the first! I had not known. Dat Unity Engine! B)

  • NPeart

    I was just going to buy world ends with you, but fortunately my friend hurried to bring me the DS version. Phew! Absolutely love it, and I also recommend the two screen original.

    • http://twitter.com/Rage_boi Vince

      I think everyone should play both the DS and ios version of TWEWY for the complete experience! DS for the original hectic dual screen simultaneous 2 player combat etc and the ios version for the very pretty redrawn graphic!

  • louisa

    I personally love all the games picked. This has to be somewhat subjective and if your job is to play and review stuff what do people expect? A reviewer's decision can never be objective anyway. Try being a painter or musician and listen to those critics remarks.
    As forTouch Arcade, I go to your app daily. II love watching you guys playing a new game. And most of the time I can judge if the game being played is one that interests me. Even if I do not like a particular genre, I enjoy watching your game playing videos. Fun and your reviews are always interesting.

  • jeffyg3

    Horn was fun under half way through the game, the sadly it gets really stale and a drag to play...it's fairly easy, crappy save spots, and gameplay gets monotonous. Touchgen.com's review of Horn is spot on.

    Bastion is the cream of the crop n that list for me. Great Xbox 360 game and its still fun to replay through on the iPad, even twice. We need more AAA games like Bastion, The World Ends With You, & GTA Chinatown Wars...too bad there really is only a small handful of them on iOS and to a lesser extent, on the Android.