Author Archives: Rob Funnell


While there have been an abundance of different models, styles and approaches to the MFi controller for iPhone, iPad and Apple TV, it still feels like there hasn't yet been a definitive option emerge that is head and shoulders above its competition. Gamevice's particular approach of having the iPhone slot between two control modules may be more relevant than ever considering it essentially predated the Nintendo Switch, however the SteelSeries's Stratus controller was a notable standout for its portability and ease of use. However, a new challenger has today emerged that looks to make strides towards the idyllic model MFi controller. Enter the Kanex GoPlay Sidekick - while the actual unit may not appear too dissimilar from the SteelSeries Stratus, its clamshell case can also act as a stand for your iPhone, meaning even more versatility for any hardcore mobile gamers wanting a controller on-the-go...

A Launch Trailer for 'Miracle Merchant' Has Been Revealed, Ahead of Its Release on August 3rd

If you had to ask me who my favorite mobile developer of the past few years was, I'm sure that Tinytouchtales would feature towards the very top of the list. Both Card Crawl [$2.99] and Card Thief [$1.99] were brilliant, and managed to take something that I'd describe as mundane as card game elements and turn it into exciting role-playing games. Miracle Merchant, their next upcoming project, looks to be no exception. Featuring an eccentric premise combining card-based ingredients to make potions for an eclectic crowd of customers, Miracle Merchant is an amusing take on the successful formula from Tinytouchtales's previous releases, and is set to launch on the App Store on August 3rd...




In theory, mobile Virtual Reality headsets should be the perfect compromise between accessibility and immersion. The low cost of entry coupled with the fact literally everyone has a smartphone in 2017 means that mobile VR headsets should be far more commonplace than they currently are. However, a combination of not enough developer support and bulky, unwieldy designs have proved a stumbling block for the emerging new technology, even compared to its moderately successful console equivalents such as the Oculus Rift and PSVR. That being said, a Swedish startup is determined to tackle the latter problem with Moggles, a brand new headset that puts the portability back into mobile VR headsets. With a lightweight design and easily foldable 'mobile goggles', Moggles is a promising and affordable alternative, and is available to order for 66.24€ (around $75) on their website...

'Strike Team Hydra' Is a Futuristic Strategy Game From the Creators of 'Demon's Rise', Launching Mid-August

Ever since the TouchArcade Discord Server really took off at the start of this year, it's been fantastic to see how many developers have signed up and actively participated with our community of iOS gaming fanatics. Wave Light Games have been one of the more active users on our Discord, and as the developer has a lot of exciting projects on the horizon, seeing their upcoming games take shape after a lot of input and advice from our members has been really heartwarming, and has underlined the strength of the community we're lucky enough to have at TouchArcade. Strike Team Hydra is the next game from Wave Light Games, and while the title has a more futuristic setting than the brilliant Demon's Rise [$7.99] series, the same immersive strategic action from the beloved iOS franchise is back with a vengeance, with a number of new additions. Considering XCOM's imminent demise at the hands of the 32-bit Appocalypse, Strike Team Hydra looks to perfectly fill the void, and should be an essential download for strategy fanatics when it releases in mid-August...

I hadn't heard of developer OPNeon until SumiKen [$1.99], their latest release, appeared on my radar. An auto-runner with a beautiful sumi-e Japanese ink graphical design, SumiKen was an endearing App Store release from a developer that made games as a part-time hobby. As a result, the next question was what OPNeon would put their talents towards next, and it seems today we have an answer. Enter Macho Cat - as the developer has brilliantly described on our forum thread, OPNeon's upcoming iOS release is 'a silly little game where you scrub the macho cat with random objects found in trash and junkyard to please him'. Anyone who understands my love of cats and anything weirdly eccentric will know Macho Cat sounds right down my alley, and I can't wait to harass my kitten with random objects when the game releases in December...

'Monomals' Is a Graphically Stunning Music Game From the Creators of 'Heroki', Launching Next Year

I've been a staunch advocate of the old adage 'don't judge a book by its cover' for a long time, and I've found that those horribly clichéd words of advice have been faithful for the vast majority of video games I've played. However, does that stop me getting ridiculously excited over a mere teaser trailer for the upcoming Monomals? The answer is an emphatic 'no chance - give me the game now!'. From developers Picomy, who were responsible for Heroki [$4.99] and played a part in the upcoming Sonic Mania console release, Monomals is touted as a music game with some eccentric fishing elements, which sounds like a definitively killer combo. With a vibrant, colourful and downright stunning graphical design in the teasers Picomy have shared, Monomals looks to be one of the most exciting upcoming iOS releases, and has left me counting off the days until it launches sometime in 2018...

One silver lining of the 32-bit Appocalypse is that many ancient titles that have been left to collect dust on the App Store for years have had the opportunity to be revisited by not only new players, but the developers as well. While many such games just receive a mere compatibility update, others have been bestowed by some significant tweaks and additions that serve to improve titles that may have been written off by fans. Connectrode [Free] is firmly in the latter camp - releasing all the way back in 2011, Deep Plaid Games' App Store puzzle title was the recipient of a glowing four-and-a-half star review around its launch. However, the last time Connectrode saw an update on the App Store was in August 2012, and therefore the game was firmly on the chopping block when iOS 11 was due to roll into town. To rectify this, the developers have revisited their time-honoured title and updated it almost five years later, and have also made the game free for the first time in its history...

To The Moon [$2.99] may feel like a relatively recent release in iOS terms, as Freebird Games' beloved adventure title only made the transition to mobile in May of this year. However, To The Moon dates back to 2011, and has since become one of the reference points for the emotive power of certain indie games. The title was met with universal critical acclaim upon its original launch, and was showered by accolades, even against groundbreaking releases like Ghost Trick and Portal 2. The mobile version was similarly met extremely positively, and received a glowing four-and-a-half star recommendation in our review shortly after launch. It may be a relatively fleeting experience, but it is certainly an essential one, and today To The Moon has gone on sale for $2.99 for the first time...

Flop to the Top in Bizarre Arcade Platformer 'Corporate Salmon', Coming Soon to the App Store

I've seen some pretty strange premise for games, but Corporate Salmon really takes the cake (or takes the cod, if you will). The title doesn't lie - the protagonist of the game is quite literally a sentient salmon, who is determined to climb the corporate ladder through any means possible. In the game, such means include flailing up an escalator, collecting money all the while fending off other rival fish who are also aiming for the stars. It's a salmon-eat-salmon world out there, kids. Beyond its eccentric concept, Corporate Salmon does actually look like quite an inspired take on the one-touch arcade game on the App Store. With a vibrant and eclectic graphical style, some bizarre physics and multiple challenges in the elevator to earn the most money possible, Corporate Salmon is as silly as it is charming, and will be one to look out for when it flops onto the App Store in the next few months...

Control Dozens of Characters at Once in Anarchic Auto-Runner 'Gummy Heroes', Releasing July 26th

It takes a lot to distinguish auto-runner games on the App Store, and even when developers try and shove in gimmicks and meticulously designed levels, it's hard not to be cynical that any such title isn't just yet another derivative effort. At first glance, Gummy Heroes looks to follow the well-worn blueprint for 2D mobile runners - a colorful, cutesy graphical design, platforming challenges and other such tropes that are by no means offensive, but not particularly exciting either. However, upon further examination, Gummy Heroes could have that extra bit of calculated chaos that may elevate it above its peers. Throughout each level, captured heroes can be saved, until you amass a huge party of multiple adventurers to help you reach the end of the nefarious mazes that can be encountered. In other words, Snake mixed with Super Mario Run [Free], which should be a wicked combo when it launches on the App Store on July 26th...

Sidescrolling Beat 'Em Up 'Golem Rage' Set to Release in October, and Is Looking for Beta Testers on Our Forums

One of my favorite parts of writing about mobile games is seeing certain titles develop from a basic core idea at their genesis, to detailed, complex and action-packed completed products after months of intensive development - and a number of overly ambitious missed release dates. Golem Rage is one such game, and since its debut on TouchArcade in 2016, the developers have painstakingly detailed the growth of their beat 'em up App Store debut, which has certainly been impressive. After missing an initial September release date, Golem Rage is finally reaching completion, and the developers are now looking for beta testers on our forums in preparation for a prospective October 2017 release date on the App Store...

Legendary Pokemon have been one of the most requested and eagerly anticipated additions to Pokemon GO [Free] since the game released just over a year ago. While Niantic have remained tight-lipped over when Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres and co would make their debut in the ridiculously popular augmented reality release, signs that Legendaries would appear within the game have occurred over the past few months. Today, through an epic reveal trailer reminiscent of that Super Bowl commercial from January 2016, Niantic have announced that Legendary Pokemon will be available to battle in Raid Battles, and then to subsequently catch, in Pokemon GO later this month...

I've been eagerly following the development of GRID Autosport over the past few months, and early glimpses of Feral Interactive's mobile port of the beloved Codemasters console racer suggest that it could be the next essential racing simulator on the App Store. Alpha preview footage emerged back in June, and it was pretty stunning to see such a detail-rich game look so refined on a smartphone, even at this incredibly early stage. However, all of the gameplay focused purely on an first-person, outside-the-car perspective, and many racing game enthusiasts on our forum thread and Discord server wondered whether a cockpit view would be in the final game. In response to this feedback, Feral have released a gif on their Twitter account that shows some additional in-game footage, most notably with a new cockpit camera configuration that should appease fans wanting a realistic racing experience on iOS...

The word 'classic' gets bandied around a lot when talking about games, and as a result has somewhat diluted its meaning. However, if one game on the App Store was worthy of such an adjective, it would definitely be Day of the Tentacle [$1.99]. Widely regarded as one of the greatest point-and-click games of all time, LucasArts' opus captured the hearts of a generation when it launched on the PC in 1993, and its remastered mobile release last year was a glorious representation that was a fitting tribute to its stunning source material. However, its release on the cusp of Pokemon GO [Free] hysteria meant that many may have missed out on Day of the Tentacle Remastered, and if you haven't experienced the eccentric time-travelling world of Bernard Bernoulli and friends, the game has today gone on sale for its lowest price ever, along side a handful of other Double Fine releases...

Kenny Sun has amassed a formidable catalogue of releases since his 2014 debut on the App Store. Ever since Spectrum [$0.99] underlined his eclectic design principles three years ago, the Boston-based developer has released a succession of quality mobile gaming hits, with Circa Infinity [$2.99] and Yankai's Peak [$2.99] being bizarrely beautiful but also impossibly immersive puzzle games that suited the platform to a tee. Yankai's Triangle [Free] is potentially the weirdest of Kenny Sun's games thus far, as its colorful, psychedelic graphical design combined with its compulsive triangle-based geometry gameplay resulted in what can only be described as the Sgt. Pepper of the puzzle game genre. We awarded Yankai's Triangle a glowing five star rating in our review last year, and today the game has been reduced to the bargain price of free for the first time ever...

We've been following the development of Project MALLOW [Free] for a while now, as its intuitive marshmallow-slinging mechanic combined with its abundant charm and deceptively sinister storyline looks like a sickly sweet winning formula. With over one hundred levels of rock-hard puzzle platforming to overcome in this obstacle-strewn candy factory, Project MALLOW aims to join the likes of Super Meat Boy and Downwell [$2.99] in the hardcore, retro and infuriatingly difficult gaming renaissance of late, and has today launched on the App Store as a free download, supported by an interesting lives-based monetisation system...

Do a Barrel Roll in the Stunning Low Poly Stunt Racer 'REKT!', Coming Soon to the App Store

Before I truly got into iOS gaming, I didn't think I was a particularly big fan of racing games. Beyond the accessible arcade classic kart racers like Mario Kart or Crash Team Racing, the nuances of driving were simply too much for my impressionable ten year old mind. However, experiencing games such as the hyper realism of Real Racing 3 [Free], the meticulous action of Rush Rally 2 [$0.99], and even the sheer high-octane chaos of Jet Car Stunts [$1.99] completely changed my perspective on the driving genre, especially on mobile. The suitably titled upcoming release REKT! appears to follow the stunt-based shenanigans of Trueaxis's iconic App Store series, as you flip, boost and barrel roll around beautiful low-polygon playground amidst a slick 60 frames per second...

Start an Alien Armageddon in 'Invaders...From Space!', Blasting Onto the App Store This Summer

The Frosty Pop Corps have proven with their past few App Store releases that they are more than their quirky developer title may suggest. Games such as the Flappy Bird and Downwell amalgam Puff. [Free], and the beautifully stylish rvlvr. [Free] underline the developer's emphasis on stylish mobile experiences, and Invaders...From Space! seamlessly follows in its predecessor's footsteps. As an antagonistic alien race set on the destruction of earth, you're tasked with using your geography skills to target specific areas using your powerful set of projectiles. With a heavy emphasis on a retro aesthetic from the CRT screen era, married with the trademark modern polish that The Frosty Pop Corps have championed with their previous releases, Invaders...From Space! looks like it could be out of this world when it launches exclusively on the App Store at the end of the summer...

'Leap On!', Noodlecake's Next One-Touch Arcade Game, Is Set to Bounce Onto the App Store Tomorrow

While the Italian plumbers and cocky blue hedgehogs tend to save the day with their characteristic swagger and charm, there's something about undefined, faceless blob heroes and heroines that flick a particular switch inside me. Whether it's the pink transmuting ball of magical gust that is Kirby, or the strangely anthropomorphic protagonist in classic iOS platformer Bounce On [$1.99], I'm all for spherical avatars in my video games. Leap On! follows such a formula, as the latest release from Noodlecake and Flying Pants Games features an orbiting white ball that must be flung and bounced around a hazardous environment of nefarious black shapes to achieve the highest score possible. As a neat little arcade title, Leap On! looks to be as fun as the dot is cute, and will be worth a look when it launches on the App Store on July 19th as a free download...

Hit MOBA 'Honor of Kings' Labelled As "Poison" by the Chinese Government, as They Threaten a Further Crackdown on Online Games

Even though the PC and MMO sector of the industry is comfortably the largest in the world and worth over $12 billion, video games are a relatively nascent concept in China. Consoles were banned until 2015 in the East Asian country, and despite China's formidable eSports reputation and booming social network gaming scene, the government is still grappling to control the unprecedented and uncontrollable popularity of many mobile MMO titles. Honor of Kings is one such game, and with 200 million players since its 2015 release that results in the title making up to 40% of Tencent's total mobile games revenue, it has proved to be a runaway hit in China thus far. However, amidst legitimate fears of children becoming addicted to such massively online releases, the Chinese government has this week labeled Honor of Kings as 'poison' in the state-run People's Daily paper, and has threatened further action against Tencent to crack down on the influence such games have over vulnerable young gamers...