Author Archives: Carter Dotson

While there's lots of sales that happen before any big holiday, such as Memorial Day, there's still a few stragglers and even some new sales that have popped up after the fact. The big one is Traps n Gemstones [$0.99] which is on a sale down from $4.99 to $0.99 this week. It's a top-notch Metroidvania for mobile, from an unlikely source in Donut Games. There's still high score elements, but it's definitely something unique and really fun from them, with their unique art and feel to the game. A great pickup for a dollar. ..

Angry Mob Games' 'Toysburg' Goes Worldwide Tomorrow

We've talked a few times about Muffin Knight [$0.99 / Free] developers Angry Mob Games' latest title, Toysburg. We have covered the game's initial trailer and soft launch in the past few months, but now we know when the game is coming out: this Wednesday, May 27th. Yep, it'll be part of the big releases this week, but a bit earlier than everything else, so you can be playing this one while waiting for the others...

Capitals [Free] is the new word game from the fine folks at NimbleBit. The game can be quite brutal if you're not skilled at the game, though. Me personally, I've dropped the two-turn-victory hammer on a bunch of opponents. But for those of you who need some help becoming a capital Capitals player, David Marsh of NimbleBit has emailed over a strategy guide that can help you out with the game:..

Multiplayer RTS 'The Ember Conflict' Goes Worldwide and Universal in June

We wrote about The Ember Conflict getting a soft launch back in January. This fast-paced RTS, designed for mobile but featuring real-time online multiplayer, has been getting tweaks and improvements ever since then, and the game is now scheduled for a worldwide launch on June 4th. The game was originally planned for April, but hey, time makes fools of us all. The good news is that one big addition to the game from its soft launch is iPhone support. The Ember Conflict will release as a universal app, so you can battle from anywhere, and don't need an iPad to do so...

SMG's 'One More Dash' is the Follow-Up to 'One More Line', Releasing This Week

SMG's got a new game coming out this week, and it's One More Dash. This is a follow-up to the super-difficult grappling game One More Line [Free], which also served as a nice abstract art generator with all the line patterns that were formed. One More Dash will have you launching from circle to circle, trying to time your dashes to avoid the barriers surrounding each one. It releases this Thursday, May 28th as a free app with ads. There will be an in-app purchase to remove them, though. Check out the trailer with the first gameplay footage:..

Pits of Death is coming out this week from Rebisoft, and it promises to revive 80's-style handheld games. Like, pre-Game Boy. We're talking Game and Watch era LCD screens, though a bit more colorful. You'll be running around deadly labyrinths, trying to avoid the eponymous deadly pits, getting the arrow to kill the dragon. Pits of Death will be playable both on normal iOS devices, but also on the Apple Watch, so it's just like those old LCD watch games you used to play! Technology has come full circle once more. I'm always down for retro homages, but retro homages with uber-catchy trailers? Sign me up. Here's the jingle that will be in your head all day:..

'Desktop Dungeons' iPad Version Release Date Announced

We heard recently about QCF Designs' Desktop Dungeons' upcoming mobile version, and this afternoon, we got some good news: Desktop Dungeons is coming to iPad this Thursday, May 28th. Hey, they said it would release this May, and they're delivering! It's going to cost $9.99, and contain all the Enhanced Edition content from the April update to the game. $9.99 is 'expensive' for an iPad game, but still cheaper than the desktop version! There's no consumable IAP, this is the same game as the desktop version, just playable on your iPad now. Or, if you have an Android tablet, it'll work for that, too...

As you recently read here on TA, Sam Coster of Butterscotch Shenanigans is fighting a remission of his lymphoma. He's currently in the hospital as he's recovering from a final round of chemo and a stem cell transplant that will beat this cancer once more. Now, the Coster brothers want you to send Sam some good vibes as "clinical studies show that positive social support can decrease recovery time, so let's send some positivity!" They've set up a page to send Sam some good vibes, so go here and give him some well wishes! They also ask that you sign up for the stem cell donor registry, which could help others in their fight against cancer...

Happy 35th birthday, Pac-Man! The yellow gobbler of pellets has been kicking around the gaming world ever since the original Pac-Man's release back on May 22, 1980. Namco's rolled out some festivities for this notable date in gaming history. The Pac-Man [$6.99 / Free] game for iOS, largely an adaptation of the original, has gotten a huge 35th anniversary update. The original game with all 256 levels is still there, but there's a brand new interface that works great, and there's a ton of new levels to play through, along with a multiplayer mode. Both the free and premium versions of the game got the update, so check it out!..

There are lies, there are damned lies, and then there are statistics. There are reports that analysis firm Slice Intelligence has noticed a slowing and decline in Apple Watch sales since its launch. Some analysts have reduced their projections for Apple Watch sales down to as far as 15 million sales. And really, the PR for Watch apps has really died down since launch, when there was a real frenzy. But since, nothing. So the Apple Watch excitement has definitely passed. But is the Watch doomed? Nope. These numbers might sound bad, but really, the Apple Watch might be doing okay, as it settles into the early days of its existence. First off, this graph showing sales seems particularly meant to be shocking:..

'Pac-Man 256' by Hipster Whale is 'Pac-Man' Meets 'Crossy Road'

Bandai Namco and Hipster Whale, creators of the mega-hit Crossy Road [Free], have just announced a new game coming this summer: Pac-Man 256. The best way to describe it? It's basically Pac-Man meets Crossy Road, where you'll be controlling Pac-Man as he runs around endless mazes, trying to dodge the creeping Level 256 glitch. You'll be collecting pellets, dodging ghosts, eating them when you get power pellets, and just trying to stay alive. Check out the trailer:..

Are you a die-hard Android hater? Well, good news, you get to stick it in the craw of Android gamers, as Radiation Island [$2.99] is an iOS exclusive. Why are the developers, Atypical Games, sticking with iOS only? Because Android owners don't pay for stuff. According to Atypical Games CEO Andrei Lopata, after a release of Sky Gamblers: Storm Raiders [$4.99] on Android was disappointing after being in the top 10 paid games on Google Play: "For the moment, it's quite clear that Android users don't pay for premium content. Google is also not pushing premium content either." ..

Adult Swim Games and Grumpyface are going to update their tower defense game Castle Doombad [$2.99 / Free] with a big new content update next week. The game got a free version earlier this year, and now a space-based update with the teaser line "in Castle Doombad no one can hear you scream" seems to be in the works. They're promising big things with it, and have only visually revealed this gif they posted on Twitter about the game:..

Heroes and Castles 2 [$1.99] runs into the problem that trying to bring big-scope, console-style games to mobile often have: these games are often well-made and can be fun to play. But sometimes, they're terrible fits for the actual platform. And that's where my issues with Heroes and Castles 2 lie: the game's good, I just came to dread playing it because it isn't a good fit for the mobile platform...

'Breach TD' Will Adapt Popular 'Starcraft 2' Mod 'Squad TD' Into a Standalone Game Next Week

Puerto Rican developer Space Rhino Games has announced their tower defense game Breach TD will be launching worldwide next week, on May 27th. The game is described as being a spiritual successor to Squad TD, which is a popular mod for Starcraft 2. The original creator and maintainer of the map, known as Tsjnsn, is part of Space Rhino Games, and he and his team have made this map conversion into a game of its own...

Remember the Crescent Moon-published space dogfighting game Strike Wing: Raptor Rising [$2.99] from 2013? Well, it's been over a year and a half since its release, but developer Dream Builder Studios has just updated it with a big Episode 2 update. The bulk of the content is in five new story missions to play through, featuring new enemies to fight, and new ships to play through. Five challenge missions are in the game now, with 20 in-game challenges to play in total...

'Cartoon Survivor' is a Runner That's Less 'Crossy Road' and More 'Crash Bandicoot'

You might see the isometric view and somewhat blocky visuals of upcoming game Cartoon Survivor and think that it's yet another game aping Crossy Road [Free]. You might watch the trailer and think your suspicions have been confirmed. You would be dead wrong. Cartoon Survivor is instead a prety nifty auto-running platformer that's coming to mobile next week, bringing a dodo bird with dynamite strapped to its back to your iOS device...

Lastronaut [Free] released earlier back in March, and after amassing over a million downloads in a week, the game has gotten a big update that adds new things to do and new features. There's an experience progression system, where your points go toward experience, and can be used to unlock new perks, such as a double jump at level 5. These might just help you out in your quest to shoot down some rockets. If you dislike the slow-motion feature, that can be disabled now. ..

'Capitals - Free Word Battle' by NimbleBit Review - Real Game, Really Fun

Capitals [Free] from NimbleBit is their take on a long-running genre: the turn-based multiplayer word game. Thankfully, they manage to deliver a fun and worthwhile take on the genre by making it a simple strategy game that just uses familiar word game mechanics to feel familiar. It's a game that's accessible, but leads to an intense battle between folks. You form words from tiles on a hex grid using Scrabble/Words With Friends [Free] rules, with each tile you play being replaced by another tile. Any tiles you play connected to your color of tile are added to your tiles, and if you capture the enemy capital, you get an extra turn. Wipe out all the enemy territory, and you win!..

Don't Fret About the Future of Mobile Gaming. Everything's Going to be Okay.

We are cursed to live in interesting times in gaming. Things are chaotic, and the industry could go in any one of a million directions. Eli Hodapp talked recently about how he sees signs of console/desktop publishers making new, more concerted mobile efforts. Dedicated gaming hardware is in decline and its possible death throes. The way games are bought and sold is changing as digital distribution and the internet continues to be the biggest shock to media since the invention of the printing press. Established publishers and developers are shifting focus. Independent developers don't know if it'll still be possible to make a living off of their games. Everything's a mess and it could all change tomorrow. It can be easy to see the way that gaming has changed recently, and the direction that you might see it going, and fret about it. I agree, things are chaotic and unpredictable right now. But here's what? As a fan of mobile gaming in particular? Don't worry about it. So many signs point to possible futures where free-to-play is widespread but more palatable to enthusiast gamers than ever; where big publishers help innovate and expand mobile gaming beyond its current state; where mobile gets to pick up where dedicated hardware leaves off; and where our backlogs continue to expand until the sun engulfs us all. Everything is going to be okay!..