Category Archives: Arcade

'Temple of Spikes' Offers Sharp Arcade Platforming Action, Launching March 2nd

One of the many constants in video games is the prevalence of spiky traps, which perpetually fulfil the sole purpose of causing the protagonist considerable pain, and normally at the usual cost of a virtual life. Whether it's the original Sonic or Mario titles, or even more recent efforts such as Downwell [$2.99] or Raider Rush [Free], spikes have stood the testament of time as the preferred dangerous obstacle in the medium. Temple of Spikes from developer Tigrido looks to follow this impressive precedent, and promises 'tons of insidious traps' as well as precise platforming action when it launches on the App Store on March 2nd...

Bandai Namco and Paladin Studio's Galaga Wars [Free] is a great modern remake of Namco's classic arcade shoot 'em up Galaga. Utilizing modern 3D graphics and new features like multiple playable ships, Galaga Wars does a great job at retaining the essence of the original, which isn't always the case when older classics get the modern treatment. We really enjoyed Galaga Wars in our review, and this week a new update has arrived which features another of Namco's classic gaming icons: Pac-Man. ..




Ever since Digby Forever [Free] was announced almost a month ago, I've been dying to try out 3 Sprocket's interesting modern take on the nostalgic Mr. Driller and Dig Dug type games. However, despite these sentimental and evocative links to my youth, Digby Forever has impressed me most with the amount of character, charm and consideration that appears to have gone into every element of the game. With some truly stunning prerelease material, from the game's own animated short giving a glimpse of the explosive action ahead, to the attempts to give each enemy its own humorous backstory, it's evident that Digby Forever has been a labor of love for the developers. Today, Digby Forever has finally launched on the App Store, and if my first impressions are anything to go by, it seems 3 Sprockets have crafted yet another essential App Store hit on their hands...

'RPS Saga' Review - Rock, Paper, Snoozer

StarStarStarNoneNone
February 14th, 2017 10:30 AM EST by Shaun Musgrave in $0.99, 2.5 stars, Arcade, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Role-Playing
99¢ Buy Now

Rock, Paper, Scissors is probably as simple as a game can get while still having some sort of strategy to it. Indeed, its core mechanic works so well that we can see it incorporated into countless other games in the form of elemental strengths and weaknesses, weapon triangles, and so on. It's a simple and useful means of balancing weapons, skills, and magic. You need to use what is most effective against your current enemy while ensuring that you're well-guarded against whatever the enemy throws back at you. The strategy comes from making sure you have your bases covered, enough resources to make use of them, and figuring out how each enemy works. That's great, but it's also not really what Rock, Paper, Scissors is about as a game...

Dial the clocks back to early December of 2015 and developer Art in Games released AirAttack 2 [$0.99], a sequel to their incredibly well-recieved 2010 vertical shoot 'em up. There was little warning of AirAttack 2's arrival, and as such it took both our community and our staff by storm as it proved to be one of the most visually impressive and refreshing shooters available on mobile. We awarded it 5 stars in our review as well as Game of the Week honors. And, despite releasing so close to the end of the year, AirAttack 2 made enough of an impression on us that we included it in our Best Games of 2015 as well. In short, AirAttack 2 is really, really good!..

Over the past few years, developer Shelly Alon has released two quirky and enjoyable puzzle games for iOS in 2014's Partyrs [$1.99] and 2015's Sputnik Eyes [$1.99]. So when we learned earlier this week that his next game would be a vertical shoot 'em up, a genre that's notorious for the type of frantic action not seen in Alon's previous puzzle games, I wasn't quite sure how it would turn out. This new game is called Glitchskier [$1.99] and now that it's finally available I can answer my own sense of curiosity: It turned out brilliantly!..

The latest game from Dong Nguyen, the creator of the viral hit sensation Flappy Bird, has just hit the App Store and Google Play. Titled Ninja Spinki Challenges!! [Free], it's sort of a tongue-in-cheek ninja training game. For this game, Nguyen worked with Japanese publisher Obokaidem, a relatively new face best known for games like PICK-XELL [Free] and Green The Planet [Free]. Spinki is Nguyen's first game since 2015's Swing Copters 2 [Free], and his first time working with an outside publisher...

'Super Gridland' Review - A Set of Matching Swords

StarStarStarStarNone
January 25th, 2017 11:33 AM EST by Shaun Musgrave in $1.99, 3.5 stars, Arcade, iPad Games, iPhone games, Puzzle, Reviews
$1.99 Buy Now

Gridland is a really nifty browser-based puzzle game from Michael Townsend, the original creator of A Dark Room [$0.99]. It merges aspects of survival games, clickers, and match-3 puzzlers into one neat package that will likely absorb at least a couple of hours of your time before it feels like its hand is fully played. It's free, saves your progress, and it even works in mobile browsers. Super Gridland [$1.99] is the same game, albeit considerably gussied up in terms of presentation. It's just as fun as it ever was, even if it doesn't really make a strong case for itself as a separate app from the browser version...

Way back in June of 2015, Suminell Studios announced their throwback horizontal shoot 'em up Z-Exemplar. They used the classic 8-bit gaming computer ZX Spectrum as their inspiration for how the game should look and play, and appeared to be nailing the authenticity to an incredible degree. Updates on the game's progress were fairly frequent through the rest of 2015, but then things went oddly silent until this past August when the developers posted an update saying they had been quietly toiling away on the game and that it was finally feature complete. The game finally launched on Steam in November, and then on Android about a week ago, and at long last Z-Exemplar [$3.99] has also arrived on iOS as of this morning. Here's a look at the launch trailer from the Steam release...

One of my very favorite recent releases is the Out Run-inspired arcade racer Highway Runners [$1.99] from developer Brownieless Games. It launched amidst the madness of the holiday rush mid-December, and once that craziness had finally cleared and the new year was upon us I was just about to pull the trigger on a "Hey guys check this out!" kind of article about it. As luck would have it, though, our own Chris Carter came through with a full review right at that same time, which is far better than my own silly ramblings would be. At any rate, the word was out! And I was very happy about that. While most who have ventured into Highway Runners have loved it, two major requests have arisen pretty frequently. One was for touch controls, as the game originally launched as tilt-only, and the developers added in a wonderful touch option just prior to us posting our review. So that took care of that. The second major request was for native iPad support, and as of today that's officially a thing with a new Universal update for Highway Runners...

Classic Reload - 'Ridiculous Fishing: A Tale of Redemption'

Hello, gentle readers, and welcome to the Classic Reload, the monthly feature where we have issues with jellyfish. Each month, we take a look at a golden oldie from the App Store's past to see how it holds up in the here and now. It's a chance to revisit old favorites, reflect on their place in the overall iOS library, or simply to take a deeper dive than our reviews typically allow. I try to pick a balanced plate of games from month to month, but if there's something you really want to see, let me know in the comments below. You might not see your suggestion soon, but it will be added to the list for future consideration...

The iOS App Store is a crazy place. In early October, we previewed a then-upcoming game called Level With Me [Free], which had you balancing various types of objects on a teeter-totter-like board by blowing floating bubbles onto its underside in order to raise or lower each side and keep said objects from sliding off. The objects include things like a heavy bowling ball, a bouncy beach ball, humans, zombies, and more, each requiring different strategies to ensure they stay on the board. The game was level-based in a way as you'd have to balance each type of object for a certain amount of time before completing a level and moving on to the next, but it was also endless as your ultimate goal was to complete as many levels in a row as possible. You know, it's a tricky game to try to explain, so why don't you just check out the trailer for Level With Me...

Out Run really was ahead of its time. Released over 30 years ago, Yu Suzuki tapped into the racing market like never before, with a sit-down car-like arcade cabinet and an exploration-based concept. In Out Run the objective wasn't to really "finish first" despite the time limit mechanic. It was all about the journey, providing choices for where to go by way of forked roads, leading to multiple playthroughs, and even other choices that weren't typical at the time, like radio stations. The game broke my preconceived notions of what the medium could do at the time as a young runt, and still stands as one of Sega's crowning achievements. It was a magical experience stepping inside one of those cabinets, and although Highway Runners [$1.99] doesn't really hit all of the same notes, it's a nice little homage to a bygone era...

Twin-stick shooting. Roguelite elements. Pandas with heavy ordinance. It was inevitable that someone, at some point in human history, would put these things together into one game. Continuing my mop-up of games that missed getting a review upon their initial release, it's Feral Fury's turn at bat. This game has developed a strong following in the TouchArcade forums, both because of the quality of the game itself and because of its highly-responsive, courteous developer. Feral Fury [$1.99] walks along a similar path to games like Enter the Gungeon and Binding of Isaac, and although it's not quite up to the level of those games, it's still an awful lot of fun...

'PinOut!' Review - A Pretty, Good Spin on Pinball

StarStarStarStarNone
December 30th, 2016 1:30 PM EST by Shaun Musgrave in $2.99, 4 stars, Arcade, Free, iPad Games, iPhone games, Pinball, Reviews
Free Buy Now

With the end of the year upon us, I'm doing my usual job of going back and picking out some games for review that for whatever reason didn't get one upon release. This year, most of the choices are coming from suggestions from the community, and one of the first games mentioned was PinOut! [Free]. Given that pinball is usually like catnip for me, I'm not sure why I missed this one to begin with. I imagine I was knee-deep in RPGs or something like that. At any rate, it's better late than never, so let's take a look at this stylish spin on one of the oldest electronic gaming genres...

'Mini Metro' Review - Train Braining

'Mini Metro' Review - Train Braining

StarStarStarStarStar
December 30th, 2016 12:30 PM EST by Shaun Musgrave in $4.99, 5 stars, Arcade, Game Center, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Simulation
$2.99 Buy Now

Continuing our year-end mop-up of games we missed out on reviewing at the time of their release for various reasons, the next requested title by our readers was Mini Metro [$2.99]. I've had an interesting relationship with trains over the course of my life. Passenger trains more or less vanished in the part of Canada I'm from when I was relatively young. Like most places in Canada, my town was far too small to merit a local metro system. I mean, we barely had buses. Thus, I didn't end up riding a train of any sort until I was in my twenties, and I picked a wild place to start. Imagine a small-town bumpkin arriving in Tokyo, Japan, and trying to make sense of the colorful spaghetti that is the Tokyo Metro system. After a while, though, I got the hang of it, and I now consider myself to be pretty good at navigating the sometimes seemingly nonsensical connections from place to place in that city...

'Don't Grind' Review - Tally Me Banana

I don't know about you, but I always get unnerved at the death of tiny cute anthropomorphic things. Most people can rationalize "that's a banana getting grinded up into bits," but when you hear their screams and see blood splattering across the screen, it's a little different. Thankfully the point of Don't Grind [Free] is to save these little creatures, but as most endless games prove, death is inevitable. Maybe that's why it makes me so uncomfortable...

Craneballs' Upcoming 'Bomb Hunters' Looks Like a Blast, Needs Beta Testers

Craneballs are App Store stalwarts, and having been around for a while in iOS gaming, the Czech developers have dabbled in a wide variety of genres, from shooters such as the Overkill [Free] series, to strange Splatoon-meets-racing hybrids like the February release Splash Cars [Free]. However, despite their eclectic experiences thus far, bomb defusing games are certainly new ground, and that's what Craneballs are attempting to pull off in their upcoming game Bomb Hunters. As you'd expect from the title, Bomb Hunters tasks you with navigating highly fortified environments full of numerous defences in an attempt to deactivate a hidden explosive before the timer runs out and it explodes. This interesting against-the-clock take on Crossy Road [Free] endless puzzle games looks refreshing, and if you'd like to give it a go before its impending release, the developers are looking for beta testers for Bomb Hunters on our forum for both iOS and Android gamers...

Developer Quantum Sheep has earned a strong following over the years in the TouchArcade forums thanks to a combination of making great games, his sensible love of tea, and being a friendly, fluffy sheep. While the developer has been working hard on a few projects for iOS, it's been a little while since its last release on mobile. But that doesn't mean there's nothing Sheep-related for you to put in your own stocking, friends. Quantum Sheep has put together and released a bundle containing all three Air Supply games for the low price of $1.99. Since Air Supply - SOS [$1.99] usually sells for $1.99 on its own, it's like you're getting the other two for free!..

As promised last month, developer Firi Games have released a huge version 2.0 update to their fantastic vertical shooter Phoenix II [Free]. The biggest change in this update is a new League system which will move players up and down in various levels of leagues based on how they perform in each day's mission. So, if you found the game pretty difficult you'll likely stick around in the lower leagues and get daily missions that are a bit easier. If you're quite proficient at the game, you'll rise up the league ranks and get daily missions that are increasingly harder. It's a smart system that should hopefully cater to a wider level of gamers than the original release...

Copyright 2014, TouchArcade.com, LLC.