Author Archives: Eli Hodapp


About the Author

Eli as been obsessed with mobile gaming his entire life. Originally starting with Tiger Electronics handhelds, graduating to the original Game Boy, and upgrading to nearly every handheld platform leading up to modern day portables.

This afternoon Apple announced the dates for the iTunes connect holiday shutdown which will occur between the dates of December 23rd and December 27th. From a developer perspective, between the freeze dates no one will be able to submit apps or updates, so you really need to make sure your games are in order. Historically, this means we'll likely see a huge influx of new games and updates around the week of December 13th, as if there's any last minute SNAFU's developers have time to rush out an update...

'GNOG' Makes its Way from PlayStation to iOS This Morning

November 28th, 2017 1:07 PM EST by Eli Hodapp in News
$4.99 Buy Now

GNOG [$4.99] was released on the PlayStation earlier this year, and eventually made its way to Steam and (as of this morning) iOS. If this is the first you've heard of it, the easiest way to describe GNOG in the context of mobile gaming is it's sort of similar to object-based puzzlers like The Room [$0.99 (HD)] but instead of mysterious puzzle boxes you're fiddling with different objects that make up an interconnected series of monster heads. It saw generally favorable reviews on Metacritic when it was first released for the PS4. Most of the knocks against the game seem to be that it's difficulty is a little on the low side, but I've always looked at GNOG as a mix of light puzzle gameplay with an art and music "experience."..




Kobolds & Catacombs Card Reveals: Windshear Stormcaller, Kobold Hermit, and Primal Talismans

This is my favorite part of the new Hearthstone [Free] card set release cycle: Card reveals! If you've been paying attention to the Hearthstone-iverse, Blizzard has been keeping us entertained with a constant drip of new cards from the upcoming Kobolds & Catacombs card set. Today, we teamed up with Value Town to reveal not one, but three new cards. If this is the first time you've heard of Value Town and you're even remotely interested in Hearthstone, you need to fix that problem. It's a podcast featuring ChanManV, Alliestrasza, and J4CKIECHAN. They get together each week to provide a fantastic rundown of everything you need to know in the world of Hearthstone, sort of similar to our weekly Hearthstone roundups. Value Town is also supported by Patreon, so be sure to give that a look if you're into supporting independent content creators who devote their lives to covering the games you love. Oh, and just like us, their podcast is available as a video podcast as well, so if you're more into watching than you are listening, be sure to give that a look. (Does it make sense that we're doing this announcement together yet?)..

On Friday, GRID Autosport [$9.99] soft launched in New Zealand, which seemed a little odd as you don't typically see full-blown premium games soft launch. However, after fiddling around a bit with the game, which just hit the US App Store this afternoon, it seems like there's a pretty complicated post-install download process they were likely testing out. The game itself is a 4GB download from the App Store, then on first launch you're given the prompt to download additional content and high resolution textures. These are delivered as free IAP, and together they're around 2GB, bringing the total installed size of GRID Autosport to just under 6GB in total on my iPhone X...

Thanksgiving Spectacular - The TouchArcade Show #332

November 24th, 2017 9:15 PM EST by Eli Hodapp in Podcast
Free Buy Now

Due to the holidays this week, we recorded this episode on Wednesday so hopefully our well-wishes turned out to be true for everyone and ya'll had a good Thanksgiving and were able to score whatever deals you were hoping to get today on Black Friday. I did end up getting some Bourbon County Brand Stout, but I didn't wait in line, so, there's that. Anyway, games discussed on this episode include Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp [Free], Lineage II: Revolution [Free], and once again we get into talking about Rules of Survival [Free], Knives Out [Free], and Survivor Royale [Free].

Don't forget to shoot us emails with any questions, feedback, or anything else relevant or irrelevant to podcast@toucharcade.com. We read 'em all, and love decoding messages written entirely in emoji. As always, you can listen to us with the links below... And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and/or drop us a review in iTunes. Much appreciated!

As a companion to this audio podcast, we also do a video version of the same show that is exclusive to Patreon which allows you to see us playing the games we're talking about. Backers can view the most recent video episodes of the TouchArcade show by clicking here. Be sure you're logged in to see the latest content. For everyone else who is curious, you can check out our public patreon posts to see older episodes of the video podcast. If you like what you see, consider becoming a TouchArcade Patreon backer.

 

iTunes Link: The TouchArcade Show
Stitcher: The TouchArcade Show via Stitcher Radio for Podcasts [Free]
RSS Feed: The TouchArcade Show
Direct Link: TouchArcadeShow-332.mp3, 74MB

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While we're primarily supported by a mixture of Patreon, Twitch subscriptions and Amazon referrals these days, site sponsors go a long way in making up for the funding shortfalls of our Patreon never reaching its goal. To show our appreciation, we are now publishing these posts thanking our sponsors each week- Both to give them a little extra visibility and hopefully to get readers who love TouchArcade to give their games a look to similarly support their efforts in allowing us to continue to provide everyone with awesome third party mobile games editorial which the App Store ecosystem badly needs...

New iPhone Games on Our Forums: 'The Inner World 2', 'Sonic the Hedgehog 2 Classic', 'Legend of the Skyfish Zero', 'Pro Strategy Football 2018', 'Survivor Royale', and More

Happy Thanksgiving Eve, everyone! This is going to be a bit of a short week here at TouchArcade for us Americans, who typically spend this weekend totally unplugged and stuffing as much food into our faces as we can. (So, a normal American weekend, but a little longer.) Today's made-up holiday also fits in with this theme: Blackout Wednesday. Playing along with the whole Black Friday thing, the whole idea of Blackout Wednesday is the only thing you need to do tomorrow is be awake by some point in the afternoon to eat your Thanksgiving feast, so why not get plastered? Personally, I use Blackout Wednesday to get ahead at the gym to try to offset the amount I'll be eating tomorrow, but, I'm boring like that. Thankfully, what's not boring is the amount of new iOS games that have hit out forums...

While there have been loads of Rules of Survival guides that have popped up as the game has soared to the top of the iTunes charts, I've really yet to see any of them that offer any kind of actual useful tips that you couldn't just figure out yourself by playing the game for five minutes, or worse, just reading the iTunes description. As of this writing, I've got 264 hours of Playerunknown's Battlegrounds under my belt, and it doesn't seem like Rules of Survival [Free] keeps track of cumulative play time, but let's just say I've been eating my fair share of chicken dinners as practically everything learned by playing PUBG is completely applicable in Rules of Survival, which I suppose just goes to show what a good job NetEase did at cloning the Steam smash hit...

'Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp' Review - Tom Nook Always Gets His

'Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp' Review - Tom Nook Always Gets His

StarStarStarStarStar
November 21st, 2017 12:53 PM EST by Eli Hodapp in 4.5 stars, Free, Reviews
Free Buy Now

News first broke in late April of 2016 that an Animal Crossing game would be making its way to the App Store, and after more than a year of speculation and a brief soft launch, Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp [Free] launched globally this morning. If you've been paying any attention to what Nintendo has been doing in the mobile arena, what Pocket Camp actually is shouldn't surprise you much. Much like Super Mario Run [Free] and Fire Emblem Heroes [Free], Pocket Camp is a shockingly well done mobile adaptation of Animal Crossing without ever replacing "real" Animal Crossing games such as New Leaf on the 3DS. Similar to previous Nintendo mobile titles, Pocket Camp is severely limited in scope compared to the full-featured games on Nintendo platforms, but still serves as an incredibly fun distraction- And you really can't beat that for the current asking price of free...

'Lineage II: Revolution' Review - A Fascinating Exploration of What Actually Constitutes Gameplay in an MMORPG

When it comes to massive mobile game launches, it seems like Lineage II: Revolution [Free] has rewritten expectations of what a "huge" launch can be. NetMarble has pulled out all the stops when it comes to promoting this game, doing everything from tapping celebrities like Conan O'Brien to advertising the upcoming launch of the game literally everywhere (except TouchArcade, it'd seem). The amount of awareness this has raised is unlike anything I've seen before, and this pre-launch hype was flawlessly quantified by the over 1.5 million people they got to sign up for the game before it was available to download. Even friends of mine who I know don't care at all about mobile gaming knew about it. From a marketing perspective, Lineage II: Revolution is a flawless victory for NetMarble, but is the game any good? It turns out that's a question with a surprisingly complicated answer...

'Animal Crossing Pocket Camp' Will be Released on November 22nd

While Animal Crossing Pocket Camp has been soft launched for a while now, when the rest of the world get to play the game had been up for debate. We've talked a lot on our podcast that there's no way that Nintendo would miss the potential real-world spread of the game between family members over the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday weekend, and sure enough, that's what's happening. The game will be released globally on November 22nd...

Jared has a Comcastic day without connectivity for most of the afternoon, which pushed our recording time super late into the day. Originally I said I didn't have time to record a full episode, but, well, we ended up doing that anyway because so much was happening this week we got carried away. We discuss a couple PUBG knockoffs, the zany story regarding the Russians, clarifying the Switch Skyrim article and more. It's a great podcast for what was originally supposed to be a bit of a placeholder.

Don't forget to shoot us emails with any questions, feedback, or anything else relevant or irrelevant to podcast@toucharcade.com. We read 'em all, and love decoding messages written entirely in emoji. As always, you can listen to us with the links below... And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and/or drop us a review in iTunes. Much appreciated!

As a companion to this audio podcast, we also do a video version of the same show that is exclusive to Patreon which allows you to see us playing the games we're talking about. Backers can view the most recent video episodes of the TouchArcade show by clicking here. Be sure you're logged in to see the latest content. For everyone else who is curious, you can check out our public patreon posts to see older episodes of the video podcast. If you like what you see, consider becoming a TouchArcade Patreon backer.

 

iTunes Link: The TouchArcade Show
Stitcher: The TouchArcade Show via Stitcher Radio for Podcasts [Free]
RSS Feed: The TouchArcade Show
Direct Link: TouchArcadeShow-331.mp3, 61MB

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While we're primarily supported by a mixture of Patreon, Twitch subscriptions and Amazon referrals these days, site sponsors go a long way in making up for the funding shortfalls of our Patreon never reaching its goal. To show our appreciation, we are now publishing these posts thanking our sponsors each week- Both to give them a little extra visibility and hopefully to get readers who love TouchArcade to give their games a look to similarly support their efforts in allowing us to continue to provide everyone with awesome third party mobile games editorial which the App Store ecosystem badly needs...

'Reigns: Her Majesty' Will Hit the App Store on December 7th

The original Reigns [$2.99] is one of those games that you can recommend to the most hardcore gamer on the planet and someone who has never played a video game before and they'll both enjoy it. It's difficult to come up with many other titles that fit that description. If you've never played it, imagine the swiping left/right mechanic made famous by Tinder but applied to a lightweight RPG where you're managing your kingdom with binary decisions. We got a look at the sequel at PAX West, and it's basically exactly what we wanted: More Reigns...

When it comes to weirdo NES games, mentions of A Boy and His Blob [$4.99] hit every possible piece of nostalgia I have for the era, like one of those YouTube videos of a guy playing unbelievable piano pieces utilizing all 88 keys. It was released in 1990, which meant I was old enough to understand most of the zany game elements, most of which hinged around feeding jellybeans to your pet blob which would then inexplicably cause it to transform into various different forms, which were then used to solve different platforming puzzles. For instance, if you need to go up or down, you'd toss your blob a licorice flavor bean and it'd morph into a ladder. It was (and still is) a super cool game mechanic, as you had a limited number of jelly beans so you needed to use them strategically...

If you're the kind of person who gets annoyed by vaguebooking, chances are this latest "announcement" by Nintendo isn't going to do too much for you. However, if you're the kind of person who loves to be teased along by video game marketing, boy do we have a treat for you. Nintendo has been tweeting various things from Pocket Camp since the game soft launched a few weeks ago, but today's tease surrounds the fact that the Animal Crossing fortune teller, Katrina, might have something mysterious in store for us soon:..

Our favorite Saskatoonians at Noodlecake have been up to something ultra rad in the frigid arctic wastelands of Saskatchewan. If you've spent any time online gaming, you've no doubt inevitably come across cheaters. It's just sort of a fact of life, and there's rarely a ton done in mobile to prevent it. There isn't really a mobile equivalent of PunkBuster or other popular anti-cheat PC software, so developers have been forced to roll their own tech which is often simply too huge of an undertaking for a small indie developer. Well, that's where the latest project from Noodlecake Labs comes in...

On last week's SwitchArcade, we took a look at Bethesda's port of Doom, which is a great port with the potentially (for some) significant caveat that the overall graphical fidelity of the game is turned way down to make it run on the Switch. This had me pretty concerned for Bethesda's port of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, as while it is older, it feels like a "bigger" game and made sense to assume that similar sacrifices needed to be made. I'm happy to report that the Switch port of Skyrim is amazing. It's so good it makes me mad, which I'll get to later...

New iOS Games on Our Forums: 'White Night', 'Tower Fortress', '7 Wonders', 'Ninja Tennis', 'Lineage 2', 'Universal Paperclips', Two NetEase 'PUBG' Knock-Offs and More

Another Wednesday morning release roundup is upon us, and between a ton of great iOS games and both Rocket League and Skyrim hitting the Switch this week I've officially got too much to play. But, before you hop into all these games this week, it's probably a good idea to observe today's made-up holiday: National Clean Out Your Refrigerator Day is observed every year on November 10th and is an entire day dedicated to finally digging out that old jar of pickles that expired sometime in January and throwing it away. Or, heck, keep aging that old jar of mustard as an eternal science experiment, see if I care!..

If you're one of the many iOS 11 holdouts still running iOS 10 to keep using things like the TouchArcade and AppShopper apps, as well as the oodles of games which were never updated to 64-bit, chances are you noticed both the TA and AppShopper apps have been super broken the last day or so (as well as a few areas on the actual site). Well, we worked out all the gremlins that were causing problems and things should now be back to normal (or as normal as they usually are, anyway)...