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.

In December of last year, developer Infinite Dreams announced they'd be remaking their classic scrolling shooter Sky Force for modern touch devices. Being a huge fan of both the original Sky Force and its sequel Sky Force Reloaded, I was really excited for the news. However, the purist in me wasn't sure how I'd feel about new graphics, and I was leery at the prospect of the game being free to play. Luckily, when Sky Force 2014 [Free] launched in June my fears were put to rest, as the game was absolutely fantastic. The new visuals were incredibly impressive while still retaining the style of the original, and the free to play system built into the game was one of the best I've ever seen, allowing you to play completely for free if you choose or buy permanent IAP to turn the game into a true "premium" experience...

It's been just over a month since The Pokémon Company International launched an official iPad client for their popular Pokémon trading card game called Pokémon TCG Online [Free (HD)], and today that game has received its first significant update since release. The update adds support for the Pokémon TCG XY: Phantom Forces expansion, the XY Trainer Kit—Bisharp and Wigglytuff 2-player set, and some new promotional cards...

I love how far mobile device hardware has progressed over the years, and the complex and impressive games that are possible because of it. But I also have a soft spot in my heart for those simplistic time wasters that aim to fill those brief moments of downtime throughout our busy lives. Specifically, I love portrait-oriented, one-handed, single-thumb games. Games like Bouncy Trampoline [Free], SlamBots [$1.99], Doug Dug [$1.99] and yes, even Flappy Bird are frequented by me when I feel like playing something but don't feel like thinking too hard about what I want to play. I even have a folder on my home screen dedicated to games like this, games that I know I can tap on any of them and reliably be entertained...

'Space Age' from 'The Incident' Developer Big Bucket Software Launching this Month

One of my all-time favorite iOS games is Big Bucket Software's The Incident [$0.99], a game about a working class everyman that's just trying to avoid getting crushed by random objects that for reasons unknown are falling from the sky. That old chestnut. All the way back in November of 2012, Big Bucket announced in our forums that their follow-up game, a retro-inspired sci-fi action/strategy/puzzle adventure called Space Age, was in the works. Needless to say, I was very excited...

Soft-Launched Upcoming MOBA 'Vainglory' Gets an iPhone Version

Back in September during the keynote presentation where Apple unveiled the new iPhone 6 models, the game they chose to demo to show off the power of the new devices as well as the power of their new Metal framework was Super Evil Megacorp's multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game Vainglory. Vainglory had been in development for some time already, and had actually soft-launched in select countries all the way back in June. It was originally designed as an iPad-only title, as the UI and mechanics of a MOBA are hard to make work well on smaller screens like those on the iPhone. However, with the larger iPhone 6 and especially the iPhone 6 Plus, Super Evil Megacorp saw an opportunity to try and fit their game onto those smaller screens...

Threes! [$1.99] (and 2048 [Free] for that matter) is one of the most copied game designs of the past couple of years. Thankfully, the number of straight up clones releasing has subsided, but I was always puzzled why more people didn't take the base concept and expand on it in some way. Dungelot 2 [Free] developer Red Winter Software is trying to just that with their new game Lost Viking [$2.99]. In short, it's a similar idea to the many match-3 RPGs out there like Puzzle Quest or Dungeon Raid, except that the matching-3 part is replaced with Threes!-style matching...

TouchArcade Game of the Week: 'Drift'n'Drive'

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...

Today is Halloween, and as is usual with holidays or seasonal events, there's no shortage of iOS games that have updated with special content to commemorate the occasion. There are far too many Halloween updates to list them all individually, and even Apple themselves have reserved a special Halloween section in the App Store to highlight many of them. Be sure to check that out, but for this particular feature I've focused on three Halloween updates to games that are personal favorites of mine, and might otherwise have flown under the radar. Check 'em out, and if there are any other Halloween updates that have caught your eye be sure to shout them out in the comment section. Have a safe and happy Halloween!..

Earlier this month we saw the release of Hail to the King: Deathbat [$4.99], a product of Subscience Studios and the band Avenged Sevenfold. Members of the band grew up playing video games, and when it came time to make their own, they wanted to create an homage to the games they loved playing back in the '80s and '90s. The combat and magic system in Deathbat is pretty simplistic, and the difficulty can be unforgiving. Those are the reasons I love the game so much, but those are also the reasons a lot of people didn't like the game so much. Opinions, you know? Because of the polarized feelings towards Deathbat, I imagine there were a lot of people who might have been interested in the game but were stuck on the fence. Well, if that describes you, now might be a good time to jump off the fence as Hail to the King: Deathbat is currently on sale for $1.99, down from its normal price of $4.99...

It was just about a week ago that Konami soft-launched their Yu-Gi-Oh! card battling game, Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Generation [Free (HD)], but already it appears the game has launched worldwide, popping up in the US App Store earlier today. Based on the original, physical Yu-Gi-Oh! card game, Duel Generation features over 6,000 cards, online multiplayer, and special weekly events. Perhaps most importantly, it allows you to play offline against a computer AI and features a single-player campaign, which is a nice feature for those who don't always have internet access...

Out Now: 'Run Sackboy! Run!', 'Woah Dave!', 'Twisty Hollow', 'Bumper Tank Battle', 'Vektor', 'Smash Champs' and More

It's Wednesday, which means new iOS games are just now hitting the US App Store. Earlier today it looked like it might be kind of a weak week, but things have picked up nicely throughout the day. As always all the videos, screen shots, forum links and app blurbs you could ever need are neatly listed below, so check out everything and let us know what games you've got your eye on in the comment section below...

'Gunslugs 2' Possibly Delayed Until January, New Gameplay Trailer Released

Last month, we brought you the first official teaser trailer for Gunslugs 2, the sequel to Orange Pixel's 2013 action platformer Gunslugs [$1.99]. At that time, the game was about 80% complete and Orange Pixel was shooting for an October release. Well October ends this Friday, and despite the game being about 90% complete it looks like Gunslugs 2 will be pushed back to January of next year. According to a post on IndieDB by Orange Pixel, the delay is "a mostly business related move that I can't talk about much, but trust me, it's hard having to push the game even further.. but it will be worth it in the end." As a small consolation to the delay, a new Gunslugs 2 trailer can be seen below showing off some of the new graphical effects in the game as well as the new Avalon level...

'One More Line' from 'OTTTD' Developer SMG Studio Coming in November

You may recall that back in May of this year SMG Studios released OTTTD [$4.99], a tower defense title that literally stood for "over the top tower defense." True to its name, OTTTD featured big weapons, tons of enemies, and more blood and guts than you could shake a stick at. We loved it in our review, and although I'm not a huge tower defense fan, OTTTD is one of the ones that really clicked with me. For their next release SMG is toning things down a bit with a game called One More Line. It's a twitchy arcade game that's something of a hybrid between the steering mechanic of Slingshot Racing [$0.99] and those rotating planet platformer games that are so darn popular. Check out a video...

'Death Road to Canada' Gets a New Gameplay Video, Expect More of Them in the Future

In August of last year, Rocketcat Games and Madgarden announced their latest collaboration project called Death Road to Canada, a "Randomized Permadeath Road Trip Simulator." Basically, the goal of the game was to make it from Florida to Canada during a zombie apocalypse, making "choose-your-own-adventure" style choices along the way and interspersed with real-time action sequences where you'd fight off zombies and collect resources. It sounded incredibly awesome, and being that this was the same developer collaboration that brought us Punch Quest, there was every reason to be very excited for Death Road to Canada...

Last week we told you that Herocraft's tactical turn-based strategy game set in the Warhammer universe would be launching worldwide on October 28th. And do you know what today is? The 28th! Warhammer 40,000: Space Wolf [Free] is now officially available. Space Wolf is a turn-based strategy game with a heavy card element, but this isn't some card battler. People have likened it to the Metal Gear Ac!d series on the PSP, which is basically all I need to hear to download and check it out...