Author Archives: Carter Dotson


'Super Senso' to be Published by 'Puzzle and Dragons' Publisher GungHo

Turbo's Super Senso, a promising turn-based strategy game that we've previewed before, has picked up an interesting publisher in GungHo. The publisher of Puzzle and Dragons [Free] and the upcoming Galak-Z: Variant Mobile will help bring this hotly-anticipated game to market later this year. GungHo is certainly an interesting name in publishing right now – they're behind a mega-smash-hit game but have also gotten into publishing premium games on desktop, the Galak-Z mobile game is an interesting project, and now Super Senso. ..

Hands-On Preview: 'Back to Square One' and 'Loop Mania' are Punishing High-Score Games from 'Down the Mountain' Developer Umbrella

When it comes to high score chasers on mobile, there's a few studios that crank out reliably good stuff. Happymagenta is a consistently good creator, but Umbrella deserves a ton of credit too. Boom Dots [Free] and Down the Mountain [Free] are both quite solid, entertaining games. And while I'm glad to see them tackling something a bit bigger with Magic Mountain, I still would love to see some high score chasers from them. Thankfully, they still are cranking out a couple of really interesting high score chasers that I've gotten to go hands on with recently: Loop Mania and Back to Square One. Both are one-touch games, but have a surprising amount of depth to them, and have started to take up a lot of my time in pre-release versions...




Gerald Kelley's Abzorb [$2.99] has just gotten an update on iOS that adds in a new Daily Challenge mode that should encourage you to come back again and again to this one. Each day, you get 5 levels to play back to back – get through all 5 without failing and get your scores on the leaderboard, assuming Game Center hasn't melted down for you! The daily mode includes some levels that you can't play in the main level set quite yet, so there are some new things to find. Abzorb is also out now on Android, if you're the kind of person with an Android phone and an iPad (or an iPhone and Android tablet), and have wanted to play the game on your other OS. Now you can!..

'Heavy Rockets' Finally Releases Worldwide in Late April

It's been a long time coming since I first previewed Heavy Rockets, but the fun, neon-infused, game of fast rockets shooting and racing each other finally has a global release date. April 21st will be the date when everyone can explore the glowing neon catacombs for themselves – and by explore I mean race though at high speeds, or engage in explosive deathmatches with other players...

The fantastic Tennis Champs Returns [Free] has just made it easier to take your stylishly-appointed tennis player to the top of the world rankings from whatever iOS device you're playing on, as the game now supports iCloud saves. The iCloud saving isn't an automatic process and needs to be enabled in settings, but sometimes automatic iCloud winds up being a bigger headache than it needs to be. Instead, with manual loading and saving, you have to hit those save and load buttons for yourself, but it works without much issue. Also, if you've grown accustomed to having different characters on different devices, you don't have to worry about losing them, as you can just leave the cloud saving disabled in settings...

'Toby: The Secret Mine' Brings 'Limbo'-Inspired Silhouetted Puzzle Platforming to iOS in Mid-April

If you're a fan of the silhouette visual style popularized by Limbo [$4.99] and Badland [$2.99], April is shaking up to be a good month for you, as another game with that style is set to hit iOS. Toby: The Secret Mine is a puzzle-platformer that originally released on Steam last year. You play as Toby, who's trying to save the people of his town who have been kidnapped by mysterious forces. Along the way, you'll solve puzzles and navigate deadly hazards. It probably won't win any awards for originality at all, but hey, it still looks pretty nice, and it was made by just one developer, Lukas Navratil...

'Disney Crossy Road' Review - Mickey Can't Beat a Train

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Such is the philosophy that Disney Crossy Road [Free] abides by. It pretty much lives up to its title, in that it's Crossy Road [Free] but with Disney characters and themes. And it is a Disney geek's dream. It would have been easy to just throw Disney characters into the classic Crossy Road level and call it a day, but it's quite clear that Disney and Hipster Whale wouldn't just do that. They threw in over a hundred characters at launch, with themes that don't just change the graphics, but add little tweaks to the gameplay. And they added cool little notes that make this something every Disney fan needs to play. Plus, Crossy Road is still great...

Nexon and Big Huge Games' DomiNations [Free] has just turned one year old, and it's gotten a big content update for its anniversary, bringing the Global Age to the game, the 10th historical era in the game. World War II is the focus of the Global Age content, with new units like paratroopers, mortars, and bazookas. As well, some in-game events centered around World War II battles will be added to the game over time. If you haven't gotten close to unlocking anything from the Global Age, don't fret – supply drops that bring more late-game content to players will start dropping...

Have you ever wanted to watch that epic battle between Clash Royale [Free] clan members for yourself? Before, you had to just watch the replay after the fact like some kind of schmuck. And hey, part of the fun of watching competition is the unknown factor, of not knowing what's going to happen. Watching competition when you know the result can have its own rewards, but there's something more exciting about the unknown. Thankfully, the next update to Clash Royale will let you watch friendly battles between players live for yourself...

We bring this to you with a huge heaping bowl of salt, especially in a world where elaborate fakes can be created in a world of 3D printing and Photoshop. But a YouTube user uploaded a video of their recently-updated PlayStation app [Free] having a Remote Play feature in the app, but with the app being non-functional until they delete and reinstall the app later on, with the feature disabled, though a second video was recorded showing the same situation. Again, be very skeptical, as it wouldn't be impossible to fake this through a web page shortcut or fake sideloaded app, but there are a few interesting reasons to discuss this...

'Astro Attack' is Endless 'Space Invaders' with a 'Crossy Road' Flair

Blocky Pixel is bringing its take on endless, Crossy Road [Free] inspired shoot 'em ups to the App Store next week on April 14th with Astro Attack. While Shooty Skies [Free] does exist, this game aims a bit more for being like Space Invaders, with formations of enemis that move back and forth while swiftly descending on top of you. You must keep blasting them, picking up powerups to help keep the enemy hordes from overwhelming you, or from just shooting your ship into tiny pieces...

The Mobile Stigma Strikes Again? 'Eisenhorn: Xenos' Hits Mobile After the PC Version

Remember Eisenhorn: Xenos? Pixel Hero Games' action game set in the Warhammer universe based on the Eisenhorn books? Well, the good news is that the game is still kicking, as the developers have released a new trailer today, and a release date for the PC version is set for May 19th. The bad news is that if you're waiting to play it on mobile, you're going to have to wait, as the game isn't hitting iOS and Android until some undetermined point in the future. Rats...

Read the Interesting Backstory Behind Noodlecake's 'Chameleon Run'

Noodlecake and Hyperbolic Magnetism's new game Chameleon Run comes out this week on April 7th – for real, after a couple of date flip-flops – and there's an interesting story behind the game's development that's been catalogued by developer Jan Ilavsky. Notably, the game has been cloned several times with its name stolen over the past 3 years. See, the original protoype was created as part of the Ludum Dare game jam series, and posting source code is one of the requirements of participation. Unfortunately, some people went and published games based on the prototype that had virtually identical physics as the Ludum Dare version, not to mention identical gameplay, and the same name! Thankfully, the first clone was actually removed from the mobile app stores by the developer, but other games titled Chameleon Run have popped up on that lawless hive of scum and villainy, Google Play...

'MUL.MASH.TAB.BA.GAL.GAL' is the Absurdly-Titled New Game from 'The Executive' Developers Riverman Media

Riverman Media made one of the best games of 2015 in The Executive [$4.99], and they're working on a new game for release sometime in 2016. The title is a bit of a mouthful: MUL.MASH.TAB.BA.GAL.GAL. Yeah. The basic idea behind the game is that it's kind of like Pong but you control both paddles at once to deflect glowing energy balls between you, trying to hit enemies that are in the middle. You have to prevent them from rising to the top by hitting them with the glowing balls you're bouncing between your paddles...

'Boxy Kingdom' Looks Like Another Cool 'Crossy Road'-Inspired Dungeon Crawler

It seems like all the rage right now is Crossy Road [Free] games crossed with dungeon-crawling. There was The Quest Keeper [Free] last year, Looty Dungeon releasing this week, and now Boxy Kingdom. Developed by a team including the founder of 3D Realms in Scott Miller, and Gears of War lead designer Lee Perry, this is planned to be the first of several mobile releases from Dream Team Partners this year. The production values on Boxy Kingdom seem quite good, and the combat portion of the game actually looks like it has a good feeling to it, including a few different attacks for the different heroes, such as a whip for the Indiana Jones inspired character...

'Pixel Machines' is 8-Player 'Micro Machines' for iOS and Apple TV

While we're getting a revamped Micro Machines on mobile someday (it's still in soft launch), people who might want something closer to the original 2D top-down racers will want to pay attention to Pixel Machines. It takes quite obvious inspiration from the classic Micro Machines games, which is not a bad thing at all. But the features list seems quite killer. The game will support Apple TV, and you can play with up to 8 people using a mixture of the Siri Remote, MFi controllers, and iOS devices. Yes, that sounds like fun...

'Soccer Clicker' is 'Football Clicker' for People Who Prefer a Different Kind of Football

Naquatic, developers of shockingly-deep clicker games such as CivCrafter [Free], are about to drop a new sports clicker after last year's Football Clicker [Free]. Welcome Soccer Clicker, set to hit the App Store this week. The developers got a lot of feedback that people wanted the sports clicker to be named after association football instead of American football, and well, here you go. While the game doesn't forget the 'clicking' part of the clicker – a criticism I have of some recent idle games – the management portion of the game dominates the proceedings. Though, tapping to kick soccer balls into a goal makes a bit more sense than kicking football field goals, since soccer goals are a bit less of an anomaly than the kicking portion of football...

Mobile players who spend as money on mobile games are spending almost as much as console players right now. Slice Intelligence estimates that the average paying player on mobile spends $86.50 per year. Compare this to a 'traditional gamer' who spends $91.58 per year. This is an interesting perspective on metrics, because we often see smaller average revenue per user quantities, with non-paying users mixed in with the paying users. And while converting people to paid users is a challenge, it shows that paying users are committed to spending money on their favorite games on mobile, and they're spending as much as 'real' gamers...

If you enjoy shadow-y games inspired by Limbo [$4.99] and Badland [$2.99], today is your lucky day. A pretty cool double feature of shadowy games has just hit the App Store. First up is Green Game TimeSwapper [$2.99], the sequel to Red Game Without a Great Name [$2.99] by iFun4All. The game has you manipulating a mechanical flying bird, this time by controlling the point in time that it's in as it's flying about, with different points in time activating and deactivating different traps. It makes sense as you play it. I streamed a prerelease version of the game on Mobcrush a while back, I recommend watching that to a get a bit of the gist of the game...

Capcom has announced that they're putting a big investment into mobile gaming, launching a Mobile Business Division specifically geared towards mobile game development. And this isn't just news for Japanese games that will never hit western shores – the games are set to release globally as well. Beeline Interactive, developer of Capcom's popular Smurfs' Village [Free], is being renamed Capcom Mobile. While licensed properties in Japan are part of the plan, 4 mobile Capcom games are set to release in the coming 12 months...