Author Archives: Carter Dotson


Nitrome has been known for two-dimensional games with some of the finest pixel art in mobile gaming. But what if they made something...in 3D? Blasphemy, you say! Untenable! Well, Nitrome's showing that everything in 2017 is getting turned upside down, as they've revealed Flat Pack. Now, it's not too far off from their typical output, as it's still inherently a 2D game with pixel art. The trick, though, is that it's played around a 3D shape. Oh my!..

White Wolf, the publisher behind the famed series Vampire: The Masquerade, has entered the genre of interactive fiction, releasing two new titles at once. The first is Vampire The Masquerade: We Eat Blood [$4.99]. With a story written and illustrated by Sarah Horrocks and Zak Sabbath (not to be confused with Zakk Sabbath, the Black Sabbath tribute band fronted by Zakk Wylde), this game takes the Vampire world and brings modern aspects of smartphones into the world. You've just been turned into a vampire, and while you contend with this strange new hunger, you have to deal with forces coming after you...




One title missing from this week's out now post was Soul Knight [Free], a top-down rougelike shooter that we covered recently. Well, some last-minute approval issues kept the game from releasing on time, and it was expected to be delayed on iOS by a week. The good news is that the approval issues were resolved sooner than later, and now you can play ChillyRoom's take on roguelike shooters for yourself on iOS...

When Subset Games announced Into the Breach last week, they also set FTL [$2.99 (HD)] on sale to celebrate the weekend of the 10th-12th. Well, for whatever reason, the sale ended a bit earlier on iPad than expected. If you were looking to get FTL at $2.99 – its cheapest price yet on mobile – you had missed out. Well, Subset Games has given you a chance at redemption, and have set the game at $2.99 again. I've played some FTL on PC, and have played some of the iPad version, but have shamefully never owned it on my account...until now. A great cosmic injustice has been rectified...

'Chief Puzzle Officer' Gets iOS Release Date

If you've been waiting for match-3 puzzler Chief Puzzle Officer to hit iOS, then good news: the game has a release date – for real, it's locked in and everything – for February 22nd. Some launch bugs, approval issues with the way premium currency was delivered to players, and general new developer mistakes got in the way of the January 19th launch. But now, the game has been approved by Apple and will roll out on February 22nd. You can pick up the game right now on Android, though this is just considered a "soft launch" version of the game...

One of the best games of 2015 was Downwell [$2.99], the roguelike action game of descending down a well with rocket boots. Missileman [$2.99] turns that formula upside down, literally. Here, you play as a fellow riding a rocket upward, trying to blast all the enemies in their way, while countless other missiles become available? Oh, and the game is colorful as opposed to monochrome, so it's trying to flip just about everything. Missileman is a game with some clever ideas, but some issues with playing it keep it from being a masterpiece. Still, it's worth checking out...

'Causality' Review - Destroying Your Brain and The Space-Time Continuum

Is your brain working properly? Are things in the world making too much sense? If you answered yes to these questions, and you desire that your brain be thrown into the washing machine, and then crushed with a hammer, then Causality [$1.99] is the game for you. It's a puzzle game for people who like their games to make sense...kinda, sorta. It's a fun game, but one that will threaten your sense of perception and time...

'Slayaway Camp' Review - A Killer Puzzler

The first thing that drew my attention to Slayaway Camp [$2.99] was the horror theme. Designed as a pastiche of 1980s horror in all its cheesy glory, combined with a voxel look that allowed for some gory slasher action with a comical feel. And then the game released on Steam first. After some work to make the game acceptable for Apple, we finally have Slayaway Camp on mobile, and what I found wasn't just a game that was over-the-top in gore and humor. I also found a great sliding puzzle game, that also managed to integrate its theme in a masterful way. This is a game that's fun to play and experience the little world it has created...

Auto-Running Platformer 'Scrap' Needs Beta Testers

Polish developer Woddland Games has announced their new auto-running platformer Scrap, and they need beta testers from our forums to help make it. You play as the eponymous Scrap, who has become sentient and is running for his life to escape the factory he's from, while its defenses try to keep Scrap down. Look, if your factory was spawning sentient robots, you'd be trying to keep them from spewing forth onto the earth too. But Scrap has the imperative to stay alive, no? And why is Scrap even a "he?" These questions about robotic ethics are free with the game!..

Have you ever had a great idea for a game, and could see no reason why it wouldn't work? Ask anyone who has to turn ideas into reality, it doesn't always work out that way. Ideas that work on paper aren't as viable in real-life. Songs that sound good when you hum them don't have the same feeling when you play them on an instrument. Even for a writer, I've had ideas for articles that didn't work out because the ideas I had in my head didn't quite work out on paper. Now, sometimes these ideas still get pursued to completion. I'm not going to put words in Cobra Mobile's mouth as to Red's Kingdom [$2.99], but it certainly feels like an idea that someone had that was really cool, and I liked it too! Combine sliding puzzles with a Zelda-style adventure with upgrades to collect? Sounds like it has potential! But at least for myself, and in this particular format, it does not work...

Good news, with Valentine's Day about to roll around, there's a game with heart just for you. And by heart, I mean hearts getting ripped out. Slayaway Camp [$2.99] has released worldwide on mobile after its PC release. There were some worries that the game wouldn't release due to Apple regulations, but those got cleared up (not calling the victims in the game "teens" in the horror movie tradition is one of the key changes), but I assure you: the game is still full of slasher action. Seriously, this game is incredibly gory, though you can customize some of it through the options. There's even a slider for how many sliders you have available, no joke...

Amir Rajan, developer of the mobile version of A Dark Room [$0.99] and followups including The Ensign [$0.99], is back with a new game, called Mildly Interesting RTS [Free]. The idea is that you have a kind of Galcon-esque RTS game, where you're trying to defeat the enemy by attacking different nodes on the map, sending more units to win the node. It's got a very simple interface and look that recalls the very stripped-down A Dark Room in a way...

Get on The 'Rhom Bus' From the Developer of 'The Mesh'

Creatiulab, a studio responsible for some fun and stylish games in Stubies [$1.99] and The Mesh [$1.99], is coing back wtih their third game, Rhom Bus, releasing on February 23rd. It seems like a word game at first, and it kind of is, but it's actually an unorthodox puzzle game. You drop tiles that form words and names onto the game board. These tiles can only be linked in specific directions on the tile, and linking two tiles combines the two tiles into one tile that forms the next letter, with three-tile matches forming the second consecutive letter. The drops start to come in different combinations to where you have to start considering where you drop them to form future letters, though you can rotate the board as well. It makes sense when you play it, but you can catch some of what's going on in the trailer:..

There's a couple of interesting bundles for our readership that are worth considering over at Humble Bundle. Just launched today is the Humble Freedom Bundle, and for $30, it nets you 47 items, mostly games with a few books, audiobooks, and graphic novels thrown in. The page also mentions that more content may be coming soon if any developers wish to add their games to the bundle. While most of these games are for PC platforms, some are in development for mobile, you can read the ebooks on mobile, and Mini Metro comes with the Android version. And there's a lot of great games you might have played on mobile, where if you've wanted a PC copy, here's your chance! The proceeds are all going to three charities: the ACLU, Doctors Without Borders, or the International Rescue Fund, with your choice of how the funds get split...

Goodnight Games has made an interesting action game in Malevolent Machines [$1.99]. It's a game with some clever ideas, and a unique art style that looks both a little ugly and yet detailed and stylish in its own way. It's a game with some bugs and issues, but a lot of good ideas at the heart that shine through the experience. It's an experience that may be off-putting to some folks, but its unique charms and quirks wormed its way into my heart as an entertaining and unique action game...

Casual, mobile-friendly golf with a striking visual style is what OK Golf [$2.99] promises. It also offers up a structure and holes that are familiar to golf, but do some things that feel just a bit off from normal golf. And the controls have some issues, too. It adds up to an experience that seems really interesting at first, but over time becomes a bit sour, before a few of its quirks start to grow. Regardless, it's a decidedly imperfect game...

Telltale has an interesting job posting up, where they are looking for an experienced mobile free-to-play producer to work on "an exciting new mobile game initiative." Now, this doesn't mean that The Walking Dead season 4 is going to be free-to-play with microtransactions...necessarily. What it does mean is that Telltale is being proactive with the mobile games market. It's huge, and the gaming landscape has real potential for the future with a ton of kids growing up who are mobile-first. And an older generation that would be interested in Telltale narrative games but don't necessarily pay for games, maybe this is what this initiative is about...

'Gravity Galaxy' Looks Like a Fun Orbital Action-Puzzle Game

PixelByte, a two-person UK studio, is set to release their first game onto mobile on February 16th, called Gravity Galaxy. The idea is that it's a "hybrid puzzle game" where you have to try and collect all 3 stars in a level by navigating the orbit of different planets. Along the way, you have to avoid hazards and, you know, flying out into endless space where you float unceasingly into oblivion. That's bad. But PixelByte wants to combine that with some real-time aspects, where timing and reactions come into play as well as the thoughtful side of the game...

'Wobblers' Is a Unique High Score Chaser From the Developer of 'Down the Mountain'

For a while, Umbrella has been quite active in one sense, publishing a bunch of games from other developers under their studio. But an actual game developed by the team has been a long time coming, at least for the past 10 months or so. However, that all changes on February 23rd, when Wobblers, a title developed and published by the studio releases. This high score chaser feels quite unique, as you have to tap left and right to move your platform, and keep your wobbler from falling off the screen. ..

'Xenoraid' Review - The 'Marvel vs. Capcom' of Shmups

I like playing games that may exist in a particular genre, but are willing to defy the conventions of that genre to create something different. That's exactly what 10tons has done with Xenoraid [Free], their entry into the shoot 'em up genre. It does things differently from other games, and maybe you won't like it! Western shmups are already so different from Eastern ones, due to cultural differences. Xenoraid manages to even transcend that difference, and feels like its own unique shoot 'em up. But you might just enjoy what this heterodox title has to bring to the table...