Category Archives: First Impressions

The biggest release of the week is undoubtely Civilization Revolution 2 [$14.99], both in overall depth/scope as well as price. We're still working on our review of the game, but in the meantime, if you're wondering whether or not Civ Rev 2 is worth the fifteen bucks, the thread in our forums is filled with some great first impressions from our community...

Last week, we got wind that animator and designer David O'Reilly, famous for his work on Spike Jonze' Her, Adventure Time, and shorts like The External World, was submitting his first game to the App Store. In a rare Tuesday morning release, Mountain [$0.99] is now available...

'Final Fantasy Agito' Preview - Final Fantasy Goes Back To School

Anyone who has been following the story of Final Fantasy Agito knows that the development of the game has had almost as many twists and nonsensical turns as the average Final Fantasy game's plot. Back in 2006, a game called Final Fantasy Agito XIII was announced for mobiles as part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis project of Final Fantasy XIII companion games. It helps to put things into scope when you realize that announcement predates even the original iPhone by more than a year. Eventually, the team's ambition grew beyond what phones of that time could manage, so the project was moved to Sony's Playstation Portable in 2008. After the whole Final Fantasy XIII business didn't go quite the way Square Enix envisioned, the game was retitled Final Fantasy Type-0, finally releasing in late 2011. That seemed like it was that for Agito, but late last year, Square Enix announced out of the blue that they would be developing a prequel to Type-0 for mobiles, once again claiming the name Final Fantasy Agito. I guess they were really proud of that title...

I'm not sure if I've become jaded in my old age or if I'm just on about whatever the tenth stop out is on "fool me once," but I don't expect very much out of games that rocket up the top free charts. Recently it seems like the games have all been total one hit wonders, with incredibly basic gameplay that often hinged on reaction times or brutal difficulty...

Sliding in under the radar of this week's new releases is Shattered Planet [Free] from Execution Labs and Kitfox Games. It's a strategy RPG set in a sci-fi world, and it's peppered with roguelike elements. Your job is to explore randomly generated planets collecting items and gathering information on the various inhabitants. It's set up like a dungeon crawler in that you'll explore one area, find the teleporter, then get zapped into the next, "deeper" area. You'll gain better rewards the deeper you go. There's also a slight element of permadeath, in that each time you die you'll lose all your items gained during a run and get sent back to the world hub, ready to start over from the beginning. However, there are permanent attribute upgrades you can earn that will slowly build up your overall character level...

Big Blue Bubble has published a wide breadth of different kinds of mobile games to the App Store, most notably their Burn the Rope series and the wacky city-builder/musical-monster-collector My Singing Monsters. However, I don't believe they've ever covered dungeon crawler territory, but that's changed with the worldwide release of their newest game Finder's Keep [Free]. Finder's Keep was soft-launched last month, and the early impressions from our forum goers have been quite positive. ..

Not long ago, word got out that Square Enix would be releasing a new, free-to-play mobile installment in their long-running Seiken Densetsu/Mana series, which fittingly got its start on the most popular handheld gaming device of its day. Reactions were mixed, to say the least. There's a lot of fondness for Secret of Mana [$8.99], and it speaks to the depth of that fondness that even after 20 years of failing to repeat its success, people still hang onto hope that Square Enix can deliver a similar experience again. Well, since Rise of Mana has released in Japan, I've sunk a bit of time into the game, and I don't need to tell you that it isn't that game. In truth, Rise of Mana appears to represent Square Enix's latest attempt to grab onto the success of Gungho's popular Puzzle And Dragons [Free]. Still, I think if you can take the game on its own terms, you might have something to look forward to here...

As if last night's huge list of new iOS releases wasn't enough, there's a late-comer to the party that's been generating quite a buzz in our forums since it showed up in New Zealand earlier today. It's Block Legend [$1.99] from Dot Warrior Games, and to quote a member of our forums, "…imagine crossing that 10000000 game with Slayin. Only turn it up to 11." Ok, maybe that's not totally accurate, but it sort of is...

The "Hot Games" list in our TouchArcade app [Free] as well as right on our website is always a great tool for gauging what games our community is currently buzzing about. Over the weekend, the Hot Games list brought Calculords [Free] to my attention, and I'm very thankful that it did. Calculords is the first game from long-time games journalist, comedian, and all-around cool dude Seanbaby, and it's quite impressive for a first effort...

If you missed the Twitch stream yesterday, it's alright, but one of the games that got requested was Gregory Challant's Front Wars [$3.99]. It seemed neat enough to give it a little hat tip in a regular news story, just in case you've missed the game as it has been practically pinned to the Hot Games list for the past couple days...

'Final Fantasy VI' Android First Impressions and iOS Release Date Theorycrafting

We posted yesterday that Square Enix's Final Fantasy VI [] is live on the Android Google Play store for $15.99, and since then, many Android gamers have weighed in on their first impressions on the game. Presumably, the experience will be very similar on iOS, as Squeenix traditionally has been pretty good about feature and gameplay parity between both platforms...

The original Touchgrind [$4.99 / $7.99 (HD)] was, and still is an amazing fingerboard game. I thought it was too hard for me, and it didn't help that the locked top-down camera made it really difficult to put together any kind of reasonable line to do tricks on until you really memorized the parks. Touchgrind BMX [$4.99] fixed this in a big way by shifting the camera back, which instantly made a massive difference. Touchgrind Skate 2 is a further evolution of this formula, and really combines the best of both games...

PikPok is no stranger to making great games, in fact, you safely blindly download just about everything they've ever made or collaborated on. We expected great things from Flick Kick Football Legends, but I wasn't expecting some sort of revelation on par with the ending of The Usual Suspects of just how squarely they nailed iOS soccer games. As an American, I don't even particularly like or care about soccer but Flick Kick Football Legends changed all that. This is such a clever evolution of their previous Flick Kick football games that you simply must watch the video to see how deep the rabbit hole goes...

I've been a fan of everything iOS developer Jared Bailey has done, so it's not much of a surprise that I'm also all about Zombie Volcano. It turns out it has a weird story behind it, in that it was supposed to be released on Halloween, which sort of explains the whole "zombie" thing, but not really. Anyway, it's basically a premium version of Baby Lava Bounce [$0.99], with a different name and no ads. But, instead of being free, it's 99¢. Whether or not you download Baby Lava Bounce or Zombie Volcano doesn't make much difference as long as you grab one of 'em. This game is ridiculously fun...

Sega's Demon Tribe is a big of a jack of all trades, and I'm anxious to spend some more time with it to see which, if any, it's a master of. It's a little bit of a MOBA, a little bit of an RPG, and a little bit of a CCG. Either way, it's developed by the producer and director of the Panzer Dragoon and Yakuza series as well as Jet Grind Radio. That kind of resume buys you a hefty amount of benefit of the doubt any day in my books...

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