Author Archives: Eric Ford


Gameloft’s Dungeon Hunter dungeon crawler series has seen a lot of changes over the years, and that theme continues with this year’s release of Dungeon Hunter 5 [Free]. Yes, the hack n’ slash series continues its march into freemium territory, but this time it does so with a system that’s pretty fair to its players. It actually leads to a game that’s not only pretty enjoyable (within the confines of its systems) but has the potential for long term investment...

Balancing a tower defense title properly is a pretty tough task. Make a game too easy and players may lose interest in advancing through the game’s missions and difficulty. On the other hand, an incredibly difficult TD title can potentially alienate a lot of prospective players. Epic War TD 2 [$2.99] by AMT Games leans heavily on the difficult side in terms of the TD spectrum. However, the game is balanced well enough that most TD gamers can succeed while optional modes provide a challenge for the hardcore fans...




Ever since we first caught wind of it back in February, Sick Bricks  [Free] by Spin Master has been an intriguing title to play. A lot of the individual elements have been seen before in countless games before it. However, as a compilation, we’ve never quite seen a title combine all of those elements with a real-world toy buying campaign. Granted, it’s not quite the perfect melding of real and digital world assets that I’d like. However, Sick Bricks is still a pretty fun game and should do quite well with its intended audience...

GDC 2015: ‘Disco Party’ is a Neat Puzzle Platformer

Earlier this week, we had the opportunity to speak with GV Game Developer about their maiden game, Disco Party. A puzzle platformer, Disco Party has a lot of the basic tenets for the genre that we’ve all come to know and accept. Levels are bite-sized and challenge players to control an always-moving disco dancer as he collects records and eventually reaches a dancer for that assumedly last dance. The puzzle platforming elements come into play via the ability to tap and convert the tiles into special ones with special properties. For example, tapping once turns a tile into a barrier, forcing your avatar to turn around and walk in the opposite direction. Tapping twice converts a tile into a springboard to get across pitfalls while a third tap completely reverses gravity and offers a different perspective in getting past levels...

Earlier today we sat down with Disco Pixel, makers of the rhythm title Jungle Rumble: Freedom, Happiness and Bananas [$3.99]. Since its release in 2014, Jungle Rumble has seen enough success in various markets to warrant some significant updates, which were revealed to us at GDC...

GDC 2015: ‘Killing Floor: Calamity’ Is a Dual Stick Shooter Take On the Series

Folks familiar with developer Tripwire Interactive have probably heard of Killing Floor, a cooperative first person shooter that was launched on PC in 2009. While a formal sequel was recently announced, Tripwire Interactive has also been working on porting the world to mobile devices and has achieved that with Killing Floor: Calamity...

GDC 2015: Hands-on With ‘Outdodge’ - Quick and Simple Projectile Avoidance

After enjoying some success with Fly Catbug Fly! [$0.99] (our TA Game of the Week back in April 2014), the folks at Ludoko Studios decided to try their hand at an original title. The fruits of their labor is Outdodge, a simple reflex-oriented dodging title with some neat tricks up its sleeve. Outdodge has you controlling a stationary figure in the middle of the screen with balls traveling all over the place. The goal is simple: dodge those balls for as long as you can to get the highest score. Players can either jump or reflect the balls out of the way, each earning one point. Where it gets interesting is when players combine both as reflecting while jumping leads to some neat ways to get out of potential jams. Full leaderboard support is anticipated, as well as possible game mode variations that only grant scoring depending on certain actions (for example, reflect-only scores)...

'GDC 2015: SMG Studios Shows Off 'One More Bounce'

Earlier this week at GDC we met up with the folks at SMG Studio (makers of the popular One More Line [Free] and excellent TD title OTTTD [$4.99]) to discuss their latest creation...

Well, that was fast. Earlier this week we reported on the folks at Super Evil Megacorp debuting their latest Vainglory [Free / Free] hero, Celeste, on their weekly Twitch stream last Friday. Less than a week later we’ve received word that the mobile MOBA has now been patched, unlocking the cosmic-centered sorceress for all the public to play...

A Closer Look at Character Beaming in the Upcoming 'Sick Bricks'

Earlier this month, we took a look at Spin Master’s Sick Bricks, a new action-adventure title with a ton of characters available to unlock. One of the coolest aspects of the game is its accompanying suite of actual physical toys that can be purchased at brick and mortar stores which can be “beamed” into the game, unlocking the character in the game. We thought we’d take a closer look at the toys themselves and how they interact with the game as we wait for its launch...

‘Vainglory’s’ Latest Hero, Celeste is Unveiled

February 23rd, 2015 1:16 PM EDT by Eric Ford in News
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Last Friday, the folks over at Super Evil Megacorp offered a first look at the newest hero for its popular mobile MOBA, Vainglory [Free / Free]. Celeste is the game’s newest mage and, being a mage, has a few qualities that she shares with other similar characters. For one, she’s a ranged damage dealer and will probably start out in the lane. Based on what we’ve seen revealed, she will also most likely end up being a damage dealer on the edge of battles towards the end-game...

'Alto’s Adventure' Review - Winter Wonderland

'Alto’s Adventure' Review - Winter Wonderland

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February 20th, 2015 2:00 PM EDT by Eric Ford in $1.99, 4.5 stars, Action, Arcade, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Universal
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Ever since we caught wind of the teaser back in September of last year, Alto’s Adventure [$1.99] has been an intriguing title. The biggest question I had was whether the game’s highly stylistic art style would be able to counterbalance a gameplay system that is essentially standard endless snowboarding fare. For me, I think the excellent visual style and soundtrack make for an experience that’s worth experiencing the otherwise basic endless gameplay...

'Daytona Rush' Review - Endless Racing

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February 17th, 2015 3:00 PM EDT by Eric Ford in 4 stars, Free, Games, iPhone games, Racing, Reviews, Universal
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As we’ve state before, it’s a tough gig to be an endless runner on the App Store. Nearly all are simply reskins of the same type of gameplay, requiring standouts to either significantly alter the formula (and risk losing that aspect that makes them so appealing) or offer a novel theme to that counteracts what is other standard gameplay fare. Daytona Rush  [Free] is clearly in the latter category with a pretty novel and well implemented theme of stock car racing. When combined with its (thankful) utter lack of IAP, good leaderboard support and great production values, Daytona Rush may be an endless racer worth trying...

Hands-on with 'Sick Bricks' - A Mobile-First Toy Adventure

iOS was a little late to the game when it came to action-adventure games that featured real-world toys. Disney’s iOS version of Infinity [Free] is restricted to its (admittedly cool) toy box mode while Skylander’s Trap Team [Free (HD)] is the first title on iOS to offer the full console package. While both have enjoyed some success on iOS, they are still ports of console juggernauts. Sick Bricks by toymaker Spin Master looks to change all that with a new universe of animated shorts and miniature toys all grounded in an action-adventure title designed for mobile...

Ever since it’s unveiling over two years ago, Midnight Star [Free] has had some lofty expectations thrust upon it. One consistent theme we’ve heard since its announcement was a promise for a control scheme reimagined for touch-based input. As the game slowly soft launched we realized that such a reimagining would also come with a free-to-play system for monetization. With its worldwide launch last week, we’ve finally had a chance to check out both its claim for improved controls as well as test out its freemium elements. After some extended time with this first-person shooter from Industrial Toys, I came away impressed with the controls and the amount of content offered, but was left lamenting its free-to-play elements...

The folks at Super Evil Megacorp recently released an anticipated update to its hit mobile MOBA Vainglory [Free / Free], unlocking the latest character to battle in the Halcyon Fold, Ardan. After having a weekend to fight with him, Ardan is certainly one of the more unique heroes and has the potential to really make or break your team. Learning a new hero is always a tough gig so we thought we’d impart a beginner’s guide to how Ardan plays and how he should be used...

Genre saturation seems to come in waves on iOS, and Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas (MOBAs) appear to be the latest game type to get a bunch of high profile titles in a short period of time. The Witcher Battle Arena [Free] is the latest such title to grace the App Store, bringing the CD Projekt RED’s fantasy world to iOS in some small fashion. While Battle Arena does a decent job in providing a comprehensive MOBA experience, the gameplay itself just isn’t compelling enough at this point to be worth an investment...

'Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered' Review - My Kind of Nightmare

Celebrating its tenth anniversary, Quantic Dream’s Indigo Prophecy was recently rereleased on PC. Luckily, the developers also saw fit to port it over to iOS under the full title Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered [$9.99] as part of its decennial celebration. As a narrative-heavy action-adventure, Indigo Prophecy was excellent for its time and mostly makes a successful transition to Apple’s portable devices...

Like plenty of folks from my generation, I absolutely adore The Princess Bride. The combination of colorful characters, witty one-liners and an off-beat fairy tale ending have left a lasting effect on many that have enjoyed the film. Unfortunately, fans hoping for some kind of expansion to the universe will be a disappointed with The Princess Bride - The Official Game [$3.99]. However, there’s just enough fan service in the collection of simplistic mini-games that it’s certainly worth buying for any fan of the film...

'Hero Emblems' Review - A Heroic Match-3 Adventure

As we mentioned in our Game of the Week post, there’s a certain amount of oversaturation that has hit the Match-3 genre on the App Store. Thus, the launch of Hero Emblems [$3.99] was met with some skepticism that it would be yet another Match-3 with nothing to differentiate itself. Thankfully that’s not the case with this gorgeous puzzler. Impressive strategic implications, beautiful visuals, and great RPG mechanics make this title worth checking out...