299255_largerThe iOS App Store is kind of a hotbed for played out genres, and when it originally opened in mid-2008 with the likes of Sega's Super Monkey Ball as its star showcase for what was possible with the iPhone as a gaming device, it didn't take long for ball-rollers to begin flooding the market. Just a year later and trying to get excited for any kind of ball-rolling game was like trying to get excited for yet another Bejeweled or Temple Run-a-like, but one game managed to break through that feeling of apathy.

It was called Dark Nebula and it managed to wow us with its fantastic design, flawless tilt controls, and sheer polish. Really the only knock against it was that it was far too short and it left you wanting more, a problem later rectified by the release of a follow-up called Dark Nebula - Episode 2. With a planned Episode 3 it seemed like the sky was the limit for the Dark Nebula series, but unfortunately that Episode 3 never came, and the first two episodes of Dark Nebula have remained stagnant in the App Store for well over two years now.

However, sometimes situations like that have a way of turning themselves around, and sure enough this week sees the resurrection of Dark Nebula by Free Lunch Design as they've just released Dark Nebula HD - Episode One [$1.99]. It's essentially an HD remake of the first episode's levels, with an additional 12 brand new, never before released set of levels thrown into the mix as well. As the "HD" in the title implies, not only is Dark Nebula now fit for the taller iPhone 5 screen but it supports Retina Display resolutions and at long last now works on the iPad as a Universal app.

For fans of the original games, this is like a dream come true, but the news gets even better. Free Lunch will soon be starting work on the long-awaited Episode 3, something I truly never thought I'd see materialize. We'll be looking forward to getting more details about that in the future, but for now if you were a fan of the original Dark Nebula games or if you weren't around back then to experience them, then you should definitely be all over this new HD re-release.

  • crazy dad

    That is great news. Played through both a couple of times. Best action-ball roller I played and is more than a puck in a maze box. Will pick up #3 for sure!

  • Jake7905

    Any idea when the 3rd one is due out? Based on that article I'm guessing it won't be for a while.

    Hopefully something like this happens to the Infinity Blade series. Meaning that another developer picks it up and makes a third one.

  • robman84

    Gonna get this to support the dev. Episode 1 and 2 were excellent - had a real "Amiga" feel to them. Roll on (ho ho) episode 3.

  • tomovo

    Just bought it, it's OK. Good music. I LOVED ep2 and I'm looking forward to ep3 as well.

    Why is there a QUIT button in the menu? It makes no sense on iOS.

    Also, on my iPhone 4 lagged for a few frames several times when playing the first level. I hope that gets fixed in a future update.

  • sakara214ever

    A great classic. I know a weird question but does anyone know when will ep 2 bq released for iphone 5?

  • http://www.youtube.com/MetalJesusRocks Metal Jesus Rocks

    These games are so good! Gonna download immediately.

  • Jzracin

    I already own it on iPhone 5 so why do I have to rebuy it for iPad don't understand oh well it's worth it to buy again

  • DemoEvolved

    This game is great, number 2 is even better

  • araczynski

    Obligatory hate comment: why not just update the original one? You know, as a thank you to those who supported the DEV by buying those? This kind of crap is what perpetuates the lack of support for mobile game shops and the race to the bottom. Guarantee you I won't be buying episode 3, since it'll also be free eventually like the other two were.