Author Archives: Carter Dotson


TinyBuild's Divide by Sheep [$2.99] is a game that I first saw back at PAX South, and it left an indelible mark on me. This was thanks not just to its cute-yet-macabre theme, but also because its puzzles were clever, and did a lot to add joy to what is otherwise a casual-friendly math puzzler. Not that there's anything wrong with being a casual-friendly game, but it's tough for those games to stand out. I do wonder just how much Divide by Sheep suffers for trying to be a game for gamers, though: it feels like it sits in this odd middle ground between being a game that's a casual-friendly math puzzler, but with a deceptive theme. And I worry too many people will see the sheep and bright colors and maybe pass this fun game over. Though, if you're reading this, you should not, it's fun...

'Dice Mage' is a Dice-Rolling Combat RPG from the Developers of 'Combo Quest'

Boarding Party Games, the developers of the interesting game Combo Quest [$0.99], are hard at work on a new game, called Dice Mage, and we have the first trailer of it. This game has you fighting battles by rolling dice, with limited rerolls, in order to cast spells and defeat your enemies. You'll be able to win all sorts of items and equipment to help you in your quests to defeat many enemies. Check out some of the game in action, featuring plenty of giant falling treasure chests: ..




If you're a fan of video game movies, this is turning out to be a big week for news about them – we found out Rob McElhenney is directing the Minecraft [$6.99] movie earlier this week. Now, we know some of the production team behind the upcoming Five Nights at Freddy's [$2.99] movie. According to a report and confirmed by IMDBpro listings, which are approved by site editors, several veteran producers are working on the movie. These include Seth Grahame-Smith, writer of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter, and a common collaborator in David Katzenberg who has directed TV episodes and co-created The Hard Times of RJ Berger. Roy Lee, who is connected to the Minecraft movie is also attached as producer. John Powers Middleton, who is a producer of numerous animated movies including The Lego Movie [$0.99] is attached as executive producer...

Ah, Hearthstone [Free], the big eSports and Twitch-streaming sensation, Blizzard's hit card game that's making them money hand-over-fist. Since it started off as a desktop game, and only came to mobile later, one would think that it's making more money on desktop, right? Well, no: according to a report from SuperData, *Hearthstone recently surpassed the desktop version of the game in revenue, and it's been a huge plummet for the desktop version in exchange for revenue for the mobile version...

Warner Bros. and Mojang are making a Minecraft [$6.99] movie, it turns out, and they've just announced the director: Rob McElhenney, also known as Mac from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Seriously. He has plenty of production and writing experience from the long-running FX comedy, of course, but he has yet to direct a movie for himself. He's working on a movie called Figment for Legendary Pictures, but it's possible that's on hiatus, or this takes precendence, or he's working on this next. Regardless, this seems promising since It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is such a good show...

'Prune' is a Gorgeous Game of Tree Cultivation Releasing This Week

Prune, developed by Joel McDonald and Kyle Preston, is looking like quite the interesting atmospheric puzzle game, coming this week. Basically, your goal is to grow out trees, starting by drawing a line from the base of the tree, and watching it grow upward into the light. There are obstacles that are in the way, and you can slice off branches to help it grow, as these will inhibit how long the tree and branches can get. So, like a master of bonsai trees, you'll be cutting and snipping all over the place, trying to get to the light...

I'm happy to see Real Racing 3 [Free] still kicking. The series was one of the more impressive mobile games back in the early days, and it's still a darn good game right now. EA and Firemonkeys are still cranking out updates for the game, and the latest focuses on Leipzig, the test track where Porsche tests their vehicles, full of difficult bends to try and conquer. You can play the track in three different courses: short, long, and circuit. Check out the track in action:..

'Space Miner Wars' Soft Launches, Combines 'Space Miner' with 'Clash of Clans'

One of the cooler games from GDC 2015, Space Miner Wars from Venan Entertainment, is currently in soft launch in New Zealand, Australia, and Singapore. This follow-up to one of the best games from the earlier days of the App Store, Space Miner [$3.99], was one of our favorite games from GDC 2015, and now it's possible to play it, at least in a bit of an early form. Who knows how long it'll be before a global launch...

Asher Vollmer has been tweeting about the performance of Threes [$2.99 / Free] and its recently-released free version. It comes over a year after the initial paid release, and while the paid game did really well for him and his team by most accounts, there was some question as to whether the free version would be worthwhile so long after the paid version released. Well, the data that Vollmer has released indicates that the free Threes is making as much money right now as the paid version is, just off of incentivized video ads to get more game sessions. Vollmer compiled a Storify page of his tweets talking about the free version...

'Hex Brutal' is an Old-School Shmup from Appsolute, Launching This Week

Appsolute Games is putting out games on the regular, and their latest game is pretty neat. Hex Brutal is a horizontally-scrolling shoot 'em up launching for free on the App Store this week. I've worried when talking about shmups recently that I call anything a "bullet hell" game when they might not fit that qualification. Well, Hex Brutal is more akin to Gradius and other old-school shmups, where the challenges come from tricky enemy formations and obstacles in your way that you have to shoot down. It's a refreshing change of pace, as there's more to life than just dodging bullets...

'Incurve' is a Challenging Premium High Score Game from the 'Pinna' Developer

Independent developer Riku Tamminen, developer of Pinna [Free], has announced his newest game, called Incurve. This game has you launching a red ball upward through shifting mazes, as you orbit floating orbs. Each orb you hit gives you more points, but you must be careful to launch yourself at the right angle in order to hit another orb and not go flying off of the screen. The walls will move, so you might bounce off of one of them, or you might hit a floor that's only there for a brief moment. Be quick, and be careful...

Puzzle-Strategy Hybrid 'The Long Siege' Launches This Week

I'm getting soft when it comes to match-3 games. You Must Build a Boat [$2.99] turned out to be a ton of fun, I'm excited about Adventure Time Puzzle Quest, and now The Long Siege threatens to make me get over my curmudgeonly match-3 ways. It's releasing this week on Thursday, July 23rd, for $1.99, and not only does it look stylish, it's a ton of fun, and does some cool things differently from other match-3 RPG-type games...

'Tilt to Live' Creators One Man Left Bringing 'Space Food Truck' to iOS

One Man Left, developers of fine games such as Tilt to Live 2: Redonkulous [$2.99] and Outwitters [Free], announced a new game, Space Food Truck, in the past couple of weeks, but I was disappointed to learn that it wasn't coming to mobile. Well, apparently One Man Left pulled a 180, and have announced that they're bringing the game to iPad and Android tablets as well as to desktop. The plan is for the game to hit desktop first, and then to launch on mobile...

From the Forums: 'Snail Bob 2' from TinyBuild Games Needs Beta Testers

Want to help TinyBuild help test their upcoming physics puzzler Snail Bob 2? Well, they've just posted on our forums that they're launching an open beta test for the game. Thanks to the new Testflight, they should have a bunch of slots for interested readers. TinyBuild claims the game has been played over a million times across its myriad versions, and we've gotten to check out an early version of the game:..

'Pac-Man Bounce' is an Interesting Puzzle Game Soft Launched in Canada and Australia

While perhaps we're all waiting on both Pac-Man 256 and Pac-Man Championship Edition to release on mobile, Namco's got another Pac-Man game that actually looks pretty interesting, called Pac-Man Bounce. This one is a puzzle game where you must move different directional blocks around to get Pac-Man to eat all the dots in the level in one go, without failing through touching a ghost, or falling in a pit, or whatever methods a Pac-Man meets his demise by. The game throws in an interesting wrinkle, where Pac-Man can bounce diagonally off of walls in order to complete mazes...

From The Forums: 'Adventure to Fate: Future Apocalypse' is TouchMint's Next RPG

TouchMint has made a couple of solid RPGs in their Adventure to Fate [$2.99] series, with the sequel Adventure to Fate: Battle Arena [Free] being a much-improved and entertaining sequel that's free to try out. Now, TouchMint has announced on our forums that there's a third game in the series coming. Prepare for Adventure to Fate: Future Apocalypse. In this game, you'll be assembling the pieces of a time machine from a futuristic wasteland, trying to go back in time to prevent the eponymous apocalypse. Here's a trailer for Battle Arena to get a clue of what to expect:..

'Ace of Arenas' MOBA Soft Launches in New Zealand

Mobile MOBAs are everywhere! One of the next games on the docket, Ace of Arenas has just gone in a soft-launch in the Asia-Pacific region, including New Zealand. The game is interestingly played with a virtual joystick for moving, but then you have all your attacks, abilities, and targeting accessible from your right thumb. It feels pretty good, but I'm also tolerant of virtual joysticks. Still, it's different from other games...

Harmony 3 [$1.99] from BorderLeap came out not too long ago, but if you're looking for more puzzles to play in this stylish game that combines color-based puzzles with soothing atmospheric music soundtracks, you're in luck. Chapter 4, entitled "Endurance," has just been added to the game. These bring 30 new levels that bring the total in the game to 120. Oh, and BorderLeap promises that these are probably the hardest levels in the entire series so far. So, good luck with that!..

Flippfly's 'Race the Sun' Finally Flies to Mobile This Month

Flippfly's Race the Sun is finally making the leap to mobile, over a year and a half since it first appeared on Steam. This endless runner has you trying to fly at high speeds through levels full of dangerous obstacles, trying to pick up items to increase your score multiplier and to go faster, as your ship is solar-powered. If the sun goes down, you lose. If you spend too much time in the shadows of structures in the game world, you lose. If you crash at high speeds into those structures, well, that's game over. And that's probably what's going to happen the most often, as there's too many things in your way!..

If you're looking for a bunch of great cheap games to play, there's a bunch of rad sales available right now on the App Store. Apple themselves are running a 99-cent promotion on the App Store with some good games, but a few stray sales are also ou there. Radiation Island is stupidly cheap, for one – seriously, why is this game so cheap, it's unfair! Some HD versions of Angry Birds and Cut the Rope are cheap if you've been meaning to play these on your iPad. And there's a few five-star games among the bunch, check out a list of worthy sales below:..