Author Archives: Jared Nelson


About the Author

An avid gamer since he was in diapers, Jared has owned just about every portable and console game system released in the last 30 years. A decade ago, video editing brought him into the world of Macs, and since making the switch he's never had one thought of turning back. The inception of the iPhone and App Store has replaced his need to buy every game and system released, and instead focus on Apple's do-everything device that meets all his portable gaming needs.

'Sally's Law' is a Puzzle Platformer with a Unique Dual-Playthrough Hook

Murphy's Law maintains that anything that can go wrong, likely will go wrong. Sally's Law is the exact opposite of that, when everything goes unbelievably perfect with no hiccups, according to developer Nanali Studios, makers of an upcoming puzzle platformer of the same name. As the developer describes Sally's Law, "It is that very notion of supernaturally good fortune - as though guided by some invisible force - upon which Sally's Law the Game was designed." This plays into the game itself in a very interesting way. Sally receives word that her father is critically ill, so she sets out on a journey to go see him, and absolutely nothing will stand in her way. That's because her father's spirit is journeying right alongside her and helping her out by triggering switches that will remove dangers from Sally's path. See this in action in the following trailer...

Twitter-Integrated Virtual Pet 'Tweechi' Launching Globally August 31st

Back in June, developer Fuzzy Face Studios soft-launched their virtual pet game Tweechi in select markets after originally announcing it over a year ago in July of last year. Since then, that soft-launched version seems to have disappeared in lieu of an official global launch, which Fuzzy Face has announced today will be later this month, on August 31st. Tweechi takes a similar approach to virtual pets as Impending's Hatch [$2.99], with a big, expressive main character who is hand-drawn and animated, as opposed to more retro fare like the Hatchi [$0.99] series. It also features some neat Twitter integration where you can earn in-game currency based on the number of retweets you receive. Check out the launch trailer for Tweechi...




'Color Snake' Will Add a Match-3 Element and More to the Classic 'Snake' Formula Later this Week

There are so many genres that have been done to death on iOS, it's only become harder and harder to get excited about seeing new ones. A new match-3, a new endless runner, the one-billionth casino game… it takes a lot to get me to notice any of those. The classic Snake that many of us remember as our first mobile addiction back on the old Nokia candybar phones is one of those genres that's hard to stand out in, but I think Color Snakes might be capable of doing just that. At the very least it has my attention. The game plays out like a normal game of Snake except that random assortments of colored blocks are constantly popping up on the screen, and rather than just chasing after that next tasty snake segment you're main goal is trying to gobble up 3 or more of the same colored block in a row. You see, Color Snake is constantly getting faster and faster as you play, and matching colored blocks in that way will help slow the game down...

'Zip Zap' is a Weird Physics Puzzler Coming from the Maker of 'Squaredance' and 'Sometimes You Die'

Philipp Stollenmayer, aka Kamibox, made a big splash with his supremely clever puzzle platformer Sometimes You Die [$1.99] back in March of 2014, and most recently he flexed his puzzle-designing prowess with the excellent color-combining, block-sliding puzzler Squaredance [Free]. Oh, and he also made Pancake - The Game [Free]. Today he's revealed his next mobile puzzle game, and like many of his previous efforts, it's an interesting blend of action-based puzzle solving. The game is called Zip Zap, and it's simply about touching the goal in a level using various lengths of material that are connected by hinges, kind of like pieces of an Erector Set. Similar to another awesome puzzler Perchang [$1.99], when you touch the screen in Zip Zap you'll activate a piece, and when you release it deactivates it. You'll use that to inch, bounce, and swing your way towards each level's goal. This short trailer does a way better job at explaining Zip Zap than I ever could...

TouchArcade Game of the Week: 'Leap of Fate'

The idea behind the TouchArcade Game of the Week is that every Friday afternoon we post the one game that came out this week that we think is worth giving a special nod to. Now, before anyone goes over-thinking this, it doesn't necessarily mean our Game of the Week pick is the highest scoring game in a review, the game with the best graphics, or really any other quantifiable "best" thing. Instead, it's more just us picking out the single game out of the week's releases that we think is the most noteworthy, surprising, interesting, or really any other hard to describe quality that makes it worth having if you were just going to pick up one...

Halfbrick Soft-Launches Action Platformer 'Dan the Man' on iOS

Back in March during GDC we were treated to a nice demo of Dan the Man, an action platformer from Halfbrick that is based on the awesome web series of the same name. I've always loved those web cartoons, and it was hard not to want to simply play through a game that was just like it. Well, that's exactly what Dan the Man is! It takes place just after the last episode of the web series and puts you in the shoes of Dan himself (or his significant other, Josie!) as he tries to fight back against the oppressive monarchy who is using townspeople as slaves to power the kingdom. Here's the last episode of the web series which sets the stage for Dan the Man the video game...

TinyBuild Reveals 'Party Hard Tycoon', a Nightclub Simulator that Could Make its Way to Mobile

Way back in March of last year, tinyBuild announced a game called Party Hard, a game about stealthily and cleverly murdering your neighbors because they're partying way too loud. Despite that premise being a hyper-violent overreaction to dealing with something like noisy neighbors, Party Hard looked like a great game and definitely didn't take itself too seriously. The plan was to release it on desktop with mobile versions to follow, but after releasing on Steam this past August things went eerily quiet in regards to a mobile version. That silence lasted until just a few weeks ago when the mobile version (named Party Hard Go, naturally) was reconfirmed and seeking beta testers. Then only a few days ago tinyBuild released a lengthy video showcasing how they implemented the controls into Party Hard Go in order to make it work well on the touchscreen...

'Ignatius' is Like the Silent Film-Themed Cousin of 'Limbo', Coming to iOS September 15th

Ok, ok, so the Limbo [$4.99] thing has been done to DEATH, but that doesn't mean I don't still get excited for new games that use those familiar aesthetics. Case in point: Android platformer Ignatius from developer Sons of Welder could very easily be Limbo's 1920s cousin. It features the same sort of dark and silhouetted visuals and is also a puzzle-centric platformer, but I'm actually pretty interested in the plot behind Ignatius. You play as a young boy named Ignatius who is bored with his monotonous life. (It only gets worse with age, Ignatius, trust me.) One night he runs into a theater director named Vigo and before you know it he's transported into a silent film alternate reality. Your job is to escape this strange world by puzzling and platforming your way out...

Back in early March, developer Nanoo Company released their latest game Dark Sword [Free], a side-scrolling hack 'n slash game with a very stylish silhouette art style and great animations. Dark Sword featured bite-sized levels and simplified combat mechanics that still allowed for very satisfying button mashing gameplay. The biggest drawback, depending on your point of view I guess, was that the game is very free to play, meaning there's all the typical trappings from timers to in-game currencies and various IAP packs to be bought. However, if you're into your typical free to play grinding game this one was a lot of fun, and it featured tons of different types of loot to acquire and outfit your character with. Dark Sword has seen many updates in the months since its release which added things like new equipment, new difficulty levels, a Daily Raid mode, a pet system, and more, but its biggest update is yet to come as Nanoo has revealed that PvP is heading to the game in the next update...

The Angry Birds are Doing the 'Monster Strike' Thing with the Soft-Launched 'Angry Birds Evolution'

If you can think of a particular genre of video game, chances are pretty good that there's an Angry Birds version of it. The latest genre that Rovio and its famous feathered friends are tackling is the "bumper cars" style battling popularized by games like Monster Strike [Free]. Think of it like a digital game of marbles. Pull back on your character and take aim similar to launching a bird in Angry Birds proper, then let go and launch that character who will then bounce all over, hitting objects and enemies in the process. It's a fantastic mechanic for a touchscreen game, and although it hasn't quite seen the same success in the Western world, it has proven a winning formula for Monster Strike in Asia. Rovio is hoping to "strike" a similar hit with their soft-launched Angry Birds Evolution, which features similar battling style as well as light RPG and strategy elements...

Out Now: 'Deus Ex GO', 'Legend of the Skyfish', 'Warhammer 40K: Armageddon - Da Orks', 'Hyper Blaster', 'Mr. Robot', 'Ruins Ahead' and More

Welcome to another week and another batch of new iOS games! Unfortunately, the big game we revealed earlier today, a port of Bioware's RPG Jade Empire, will not be launching tonight as originally intended. Dang it! Look for it to come soon, and we'll be sure to let you know the moment it's available. Don't let that get you down, though, as this week is filled with goodness like Deus Ex GO and Legend of the Skyfish. So check out the full list below and let us know which games you'll be picking up this week!..

Three weeks ago, The Quest HD [$7.99] hit the App Store after receiving a very warm reception on Steam earlier in the year, but there was only one major problem: The game was iPad-only. That's all well and good if you have an iPad, but if you don't or even if you simply prefer gaming on your iPhone then you weren't able to experience this remaster of one of mobile gaming's all-time classic RPGs. Well, as it turns out, developer Redshift didn't make The Quest HD iPhone-compatible because the numerous previous releases and expansions of the original The Quest are all iPhone-only, and they were worried people might be confused which games were the old ones and which one was the new one when looking at them in the App Store. Well, it wouldn't be any more confusing than it already is with like 20+ existing versions of The Quest! Thankfully Redshift agreed, and so after seeing the demand from players wishing for an iPhone version, they quickly went to work on a Universal update which has just become available...

Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick's 'Thimbleweed Park' Gets a New Trailer for Gamescom

We've been really excited for Thimbleweed Park, a new adventure game from two of the creators behind Lucasarts classic Maniac Mansion, since we posted the first trailer for the game this past March. Another video surfaced in June, and continued to stoke the fire of anticipation for the game. With Gamescom this week, another new Thimbleweed Park video has been released, this one focusing on one of the game's five playable characters, an aspiring game developer named Delores Edmund. Check it out...

Last month, a Twitter account popped up for something called E Corp Messaging, which hinted that it was an upcoming mobile game based around the hit hacking show Mr. Robot. Today that game, Mr. Robot:1.51exfiltrati0n.ipa [$2.99] (yes that is what it's called) has dropped in the App Store. Developed by Night School Studio and published by Telltale Games, Mr. Robot:1.51exfiltrati0n.ipa is a text-driven adventure that takes place during the first season of the show. You find yourself picking up a phone someone dropped on the sidewalk, and after a few prompts and a hilariously legalese-filled Terms of Service agreement, you find yourself a proud new user of the E Corp Messaging platform. ..

'The Inner World - The Last Wind Monk' is a Sequel to the 2013 Adventure Game Coming Next Year

The Inner World [$1.99] is an adventure game from Studio Fizbin and Headup Games that released back in 2013, and although it went under the radar for most people, it had a small but loyal fanbase who enjoyed the game's imaginative story, characters, and game world. Well with Gamescom kicking off this week in Germany, the developers of The Inner World have just announced a brand new sequel called The Inner World - The Last Wind Monk, and they've just released this short teaser trailer for it...

We were on the hype train for Gambrinous and Versus Evil's Guild of Dungeoneering [$3.99] ever since we saw it at PAX South way back in January of last year. However, as is common with multiplatform releases, Guild of Dungeoneering was released on desktop the following July, and us poor mobile gamers had to wait an entire year before the game finally launched in the App Store last month. It was worth the wait, though, as we thought the game was pretty darn good. There's another side benefit to this staggered release too, as since the game has been on desktop for a year already that means it's already had a major expansion released, and now less than a month after arriving on iOS, that expansion is hitting the mobile version of Guild of Dungeoneering. According to the developers, the Pirates Cove expansion includes "30% more game with a brand new pirate themed region complete with 3 new dungeoneer classes to quest with, 23 new monsters to defeat and 27 new items to equip." Here's the trailer from when the expansion launched on desktop...

Artillery games have long been a popular genre on mobile. iShoot was one of the earliest examples of an indie developer striking it rich with an iPhone game, and of course Angry Birds is a derivative of the artillery genre. A bit later in the iPhone's life a game called Bowman caught fire and ushered in an influx of games where you shot arrows into stick figure people. There's just something so satisfying about guessing the angle and power of a shot and watching you hit your target right on the mark. And when you take that winning formula and throw in Mortal Kombat-style gore? It's absolute gold. That's the story of Bowmasters [$1.99 / Free], which launched under the radar last week. The game sees you battling it out against an AI opponent, each taking turns lobbing various projectiles at each other until one of you runs out of life. ..

'Word Invaders' is the Unlikely Combo of 'Space Invaders' and 'Scrabble', Coming August 25th

Keeping with today's genre-blending theme, there's yet another upcoming game that's grabbed my attention, this one called Word Invaders. As you can probably guess from the title, Word Invaders mashes together word games with classic Space Invaders-style gameplay. But wait, how the heck does that work? Well, your job is to make as many words as possible from the selection of letters you're given, but you'll have to deal with invaders constantly flying above and shooting away your letters. This is not a slow-paced word game where you have all the time in the world to come up with the "perfect" word, you need to be on your toes in Word Invaders as any of your precious letters can be blasted away in the blink of an eye...

'Defend Your Turf' is a Beat 'em Up with Real-Time Strategy Elements Coming August 23rd

I guess today is the day to talk about genre-blending games, as another upcoming game has caught my attention that again takes some tried-and-true concepts and mixes them together into a single game. It's called Defend Your Turf from solo UK developer Stephen Folkes, and it takes the classic beat 'em up genre and peppers in some real-time strategy gameplay. The story is as old as time itself. "A bunch of guys dressed in blue hate another bunch of guys dressed in red… for no apparent reason." I'll let the humorous trailer for Defend Your Turf do the explaining...

'Line Defense' Will Mix 'Missile Command' with 'Breakout' Mechanics Later this Month

I'm a big fan of genre-blending, and developer Legal Radiation Team is blending together several well-worn mechanics in a neat way in their upcoming game Line Defense. The base concept is similar to Missile Command where you'll be protecting various cities across the world from incoming attacks. You'll do this by drawing shields in mid-air to absorb the attacks, but that's not all, as in some instances you'll want to be deflecting attacks back towards the enemies, Breakout-style. Finally, you'll use that same action to diffuse time bombs out of the air, taking a page out of Fruit Ninja...