Author Archives: Chris Carter


'Puzzle to the Center of the Earth' Review - Miner Match-Thirty-Niner

There still aren't enough mining games out there in the world. Despite the resurgence of the genre on the mobile platform and recent mainstream hits like Steamworld Dig, I could probably play a new mining game every week without getting bored. There's something about digging down into the great unknown that fills a void many other titles can't, and Puzzle to the Center of the Earth [Free] manages to keep the core facets of the genre intact, while adding in some unique puzzle elements...

'Skater' Review - Two Shoes and a Board

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October 24th, 2014 4:00 PM EDT by Chris Carter in $4.99, 3.5 stars, Game Center, Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Simulation, Sports
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Skating games were my life for months at a time. Whether it was the next Tony Hawk iteration or EA's SKATE, every time a shiny new skating title would hit my doorstep, I'd be engrossed in that world for weeks on end. I wasn't the best skater in the real world, but digitally I was a pro, ready to ride with the best of them. That feeling has been missing for quite a while now after both franchises have been put on hold, but Skater [$4.99] for iOS recreates some of that magic on the go...

'Words for Evil' for iPad Review - Blobs Teach Typing

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October 14th, 2014 9:00 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $1.99, 3 stars, Games, iPad Games, Reviews, Word
$1.99 Buy Now

Playing Mario Teaches Typing and Typing of the Dead for the first time were magical experiences for me growing up. I had no real interest in word games outside of the occasional Word Munchers binge, but those two titles took my love for the genre to a whole new level. It wasn't because of typing classes or outside practice that I worked my way up to over 80 words-per-minute in High School, it was due to videogames, and I owe them a great deal. Words for Evil [$1.99 (HD)] is a very similar game that attempts to marry typing gameplay with RPG-like elements, with mixed results...

Cookie Clicker was one of my favorite games of 2013. Your objective was simple -- make more cookies. At first, you needed to click the screen occasionally to get more cookies. Eventually, you start accumulating them on your own and you don't really even need to click. Slowly but surely it evolves into a giant meta-game of cookie management and borders on a full-on simulation. It's the simplicity that makes it worth playing. Why am I mentioning all of this? Because Poor Gladiator [Free] for iOS has a similar scheme, and is a great way to relax on the go...

Snake is a timeless game. It was one of the first experiences I had on a portable device, and despite the fact that there was just one level (a giant square box), it provided endless hours of entertainment. It was a much simpler time, and that time is over. In the current era of gaming, it's expected that a snake game would have a load of bells and whistles, lest it fall short of providing something you haven't seen a million times in the past 20 years. The Jake and Finn skinned Treasure Fetch - Adventure Time [$2.99] differentiates itself somewhat, but falls into the same few trappings as the snake genre along the way...

'WWE SuperCard' Review - Playing Cards 3:16

'WWE SuperCard' Review - Playing Cards 3:16

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September 22nd, 2014 10:00 AM EDT by Chris Carter in 4.5 stars, Card, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Universal
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The mobile platform has created a market that I can't get enough of -- digital tabletop. Although the online marketplace has created potential issues in terms of overcharging for cards, expansions, or game pieces, playing a tabletop game without having to deal with any of the setup is a godsend in many instances, particularly with games that take forever to lay out. It also allows games to flourish that wouldn't have existed otherwise, like WWE SuperCard [Free]...

Games built around comedy are few and far between. Although there was an era on PC where Monty Python games flowed like fine wine and adventure titles were primarily build on comedic material, the gaming industry has gotten progressively more serious as the audience has gotten progressively larger. Enter Max Gentlemen [Free] -- a game that will make pretty much anyone smile, but lacks a solid gameplay foundation...

Carcassonne [$9.99] is one of my favorite board games, and I still play the mobile version to this day. There's something about the combination of depth with the relatively short length of a session that really calls to me, and there aren't very many experiences like it on the market. So when I heard that Damn Little Town [$0.99] was a new take on the classic board game I jumped at the opportunity to try it out...

For the most part, Regular Show games tend to fit the videogame mold far better than its Adventure Time brethren. Videogames are heavily cemented in the show itself, and there's hardly a season that passes by when stars Mordecai and Rigby veg out on the couch and game for hours on end. This time around the gang finds themselves in a tower defense-like situation, sparked by rival park manager Gene and The Great Prank War [$2.99]...

'Yomi' Review - A Fighting Card Game

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July 11th, 2014 10:48 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $9.99, 4 stars, Card, Games, iPad Games, Reviews, Universal
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As soon as people hear the phrase "card game" you'll have a massive amount of people running for the hills, which is a shame. As a big fan of deck-builders like Dominion, as well as battle games like Hearthstone, card games can be extremely entertaining if done right, and are often timeless, especially on an intuitive touch interface...

Pac-Man has worn many hats over the course of his nearly two and a half decade tenure. In addition to his popular top-down maze fashion, he's also starred in a runner, an adventure game, and even full-on 3D action titles. Now, courtesy of the Candy Crush and Puzzles & Dragons craze, he's the star of a Match-3 with heavy RPG elements called Pac-Man Monsters [Free]. And you know what? It's not half bad...

'VVVVVV' Review - A VVVery Good Port

'VVVVVV' Review - A VVVery Good Port

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June 18th, 2014 11:44 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $2.99, 5 stars, Games, iPad Games, Platform, Reviews
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It's hard to believe that it's been four years since Terry Cavanaugh's VVVVVV was first released, but here we are in 2014 with an iOS port. While a lot of people would be quick to note that due to its precision nature, the mobile platform wouldn't be conducive to pixel-perfect jumping , I'm pleased to say that after playing it -- they're wrong. VVVVVV [$2.99] on iOS is a wonderful port-job, and newcomers and veterans alike will be able to enjoy it...

In the current era of gaming, the phrase "Roguelike" can often be overused. It seems like any game featuring any number of elements from the genre such as permadeath and randomized situations warrant the moniker, but after the rise of major games like The Binding of Isaac and Spelunky, it's just easier to use the phrase to describe any number of elements from the age-old genre and move on. With that in mind, Power Grounds [$0.99] is kind of sort of a roguelike -- kind of...

One of the first PC games I ever played was a roguelike called ZZT. It was comprised entirely of ANSI characters, so there were no real "graphics," as everything was text based. The Atari era was very simplistic in a similar way, often utilizing singular color schemes for backgrounds, with very little detail due to the nature of technical limitations at the time. Pixa [$0.99] attempts to recreate said era with a touch-screen interface, and the results are extremely mixed -- mostly dependant on how fondly you remember the old school days...

'Sometimes You Die' Review - Not What It Seems

Once in a blue moon, an inconspicuous game will come around and turn an entire genre or platform on its head. Sometimes You Die [$1.99] is one of those games. On the surface, Sometimes You Die is a very standard, but sleek platformer that asks you to get a cube through a series of hard-hitting arenas, with razor sharp spikes and enemies that usually employ the same said sharp tactics. You'll be able to traverse these areas by way of moving left, right, and jumping -- that's all you'll really need...

'Dark Guardians' Review - Style Over Substance

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April 22nd, 2014 9:56 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $1.99, 3 stars, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Runner, Universal
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Runners come in all shapes and sizes, but often times, flashy is one of the many coats of colors it may wear. Dark Guardians [$1.99] is a beautiful game that looks very similar to the aesthetic design of the Kickstarter success Banner Saga, but sadly it doesn't have the mechanical chops to prop it up beyond its pretty veneer...

'Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft' for iPad Review - Shuffling for Zul'jin

Blizzard Entertainment has a long line of releases with serious stories, usually focusing on the fate of the world or racial warfare. The Warcraft franchise has a few nods to comedy here and there with creatures like the Murlocs and the Pandaren, but for the most part, big bads like the Lich King still run the show. Comparatively, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft [Free] is a card game where you can summon an angry chicken and peck your enemies to death. As you can imagine, it's a ton of fun...

'Eets Munchies' for iPad Review - Comfort Food

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April 3rd, 2014 6:17 PM EDT by Chris Carter in $2.99, 4 stars, Game Center, Games, iPad Games, Puzzle, Reviews
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Puzzle games come in all shapes and sizes on the current marketplace. Some of them are more action oriented than others, but often times the most rewarding puzzler is one that lets you really sit and think before acting. In other words, a game that truly tests your wits and mettle in ways that faster-paced titles couldn't, forcing you to really dig deep down and bust out every bit of critical thinking you can muster. Like the classic Incredible Machine series, Eets Munchies [$2.99 (HD)] does just that -- but with an adorable (and sometimes creepy) rabbit mascot...

'Smash Hit' Review - Madness with Marbles

Some people can't get enough of endless runners. The concept of chasing a carrot on a stick and collecting tons of miniature carrots along the way has its own allure, but there's no denying that the same concept is often used over and over to the point of boredom. Smash Hit [Free] turns the runner concept on its head with a first-person perspective, beautiful graphics centered around objects made of glass, and a completely fair free-to-play system that actually works. You could say it's a... smash hit...

'Dual Survivor' Review - Seeing Double

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March 13th, 2014 1:30 PM EDT by Chris Carter in $2.99, 3.5 stars, Action, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Universal
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There aren't many games that ask you to do two things at once. One character to move about in a platformer -- one cursor in adventure games -- limiting control to one thing at a time is a common practice. But with Dual Survivor [$2.99], you're controlling two ships through two separate tracks -- which is as tough as it sounds...