Category Archives: Games

Last week we got our first taste of Ninja Boy Adventures, a game created by The Clash Soft as an answer for there not being any classic Bomberman experiences available on iOS. The very next day we got a lengthy look at Ninja Boy Adventures being played with an MFi controller, a final taste of the game ahead of its planned February 3rd release date. Well, it's not quite February 3rd yet here in California, but with the wackiness of time zones and an entirely digital App Store it turns out Ninja Boy Adventures [$1.99] is already available as of just a couple hours ago...

Many 20th century governments have risen and fallen on the power of the word. While sudden explosions of dissent have marked the often-televised end of regimes like Romania's Ceouseskou in 1989, it was the power of the official or underground press that often initially held these governments in power and fomented the dissent that led to their downfall. And these words in official propaganda or unofficial, subversive propaganda (because any information with an angle is, technically, a form of propaganda) caused suffering and death and ruined millions of lives. That's why when I started playing The Westport Independent [$4.99], a "censorship simulator" according to the App Store description, I was expecting my words to cost many lives, my decisions to matter both in terms of gameplay but also in terms of making me care about the lives lost, even the imaginary ones...




If you've been playing Magic: The Gathering-Puzzle Quest [Free], you'll know the developers have managed to marry the two genres quite successfully and given us a pretty deep and entertaining take on the Magic universe. In other words, it's fun. Today, the game received its first major update that has added quite a few things. First of all, we are getting a new Quick Battle mode where you fight decks created by other players (but played by the AI), and while you don't lose points when defeated, you earn points that will give you rewards at the end of the event. Quick Battle now offers you a chance at cards from specific colors along with free card packs and currency...

The East New World [$1.99] is pretty comfortable wearing its inspirations on its sleeve. The enemy designs map pretty closely to those found in Goblin Sword [$1.99]. The button layout is very similar to the one used on Sword Of Xolan [$0.99]. The basic gameplay of all of these games isn't that far removed from Devious Dungeon [$2.99]. That's not to say that The East New World doesn't have a few ideas of its own, but it's similar enough to Goblin Sword in particular that it feels like a reskin at times. You'll need to make your way through preset levels, searching out three crystals and two chests per stage, defeating whatever gets in your way using your sword. Pick up all the coins and gems you find on the way so that you can buy new gear in town between levels. Use your trusty double jump to avoid spikes and other hazards, and make your way to the exit somewhere on the far right-hand side of the stage. Very much a clone, to be sure, but it's at least a good one...

'Super Phantom Cat' Review - A Purretty Clawsome Catformer Fur iOS

First off, sorry about that headline. I tried to fight the urge and I failed. Second, if you’re bummed that there’s no Super Mario game on the App Store (yet?), then you should drop what you’re doing and grab Veewo’s Super Phantom Cat [$1.99] right meow. It’s a fairly traditional platformer under the surface, borrowing heavily from Nintendo’s resident plumber, but I have to say--that surface is flippin’ gorgeous...

Last September, Square Enix announced that they would be releasing a new remake of the original Mana game on iOS, Android, and PlayStation Vita. That game, known as Seiken Densetsu in Japan, has had many names in English. If you're North American, you might know it as The Final Fantasy Adventure on the original Game Boy, or perhaps as Sword Of Mana, as its Game Boy Advance remake was called. If you're from Europe, you probably know the Game Boy game as Mystic Quest. Well, the game has yet another title now, as the English version of this remake is going by the title Adventures Of Mana, a nice nod to both of its previous American names. Oh, and the important bit: it's coming out worldwide for both iOS and Android this Thursday...

'CombineRobot' Review - Mecha Match Three

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January 29th, 2016 2:00 PM EST by Chris Carter in $0.99, 4 stars, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Puzzle, Reviews, Universal
99¢ Buy Now

Match-three is one of those genres that will be around forever. Years after we're immersing ourselves in full consumer-grade VR, Match-three will still be rampant on portable devices and wearable tech. It's inevitable. But while many of them stick to the same formula, CombineRobot [$0.99] aims to do something different -- both thematically and mechanically -- and I admire it for that...

Lost In Harmony [$3.99] is the latest game from Yoan Fanise, whose work at Ubisoft included directing Valiant Hearts [Free] and Rayman Raving Rabbids, along with sound design and audio direction on titles such as Beyond Good & Evil, Rabbids Go Home, and Assassin's Creed 3. With that kind of resume, it's perhaps not surprising that Lost In Harmony attempts to be an audio/visual spectacle, a heart-wrenching experience, and a unique hybrid of gameplay styles all at once. It succeeds completely on the first point and reasonably well on the second, but there are some definite issues that crop up with the third point. You can get a lot out of Lost In Harmony, but you're going to have to forgive a few things along the way...

Hot off the recent news of Ranked Play Draft Mode, the folks over at Super Evil Megacorp have announced even more news concerning their mobile MOBA, Vainglory [Free]...

RPG Reload File 068 - 'Legends Of Yore'

Hello, gentle readers, and welcome to the RPG Reload, the weekly feature where punch skeletons for apples. Each week, we take a look at an RPG from the App Store's past to see how it's doing in modern times. It's a bit of reflecting, a bit of revisiting, and a chance to take a deeper dive than our reviews usually allow for. I try to present as diverse a selection of RPGs from week to week as I can muster, but if you feel like I've missed something important, please let me know. You can give suggestions by commenting below, posting in the Official RPG Reload Club thread, or by tweeting me at @RPGReload. Since the schedule is planned pretty far ahead of time, you probably won't see any games you suggest soon, but you will see them eventually...

Even though Vainglory [Free] has seen its share of tournaments and competitions since its launch last year, one thing it has been strangely missing is a built-in Draft mode for true tournament play. That changes with Version 1.14 with a significant revamping of Ranked play...

If you like to crash again, and again, and again, then you should be playing Piloteer [$2.99], a very challenging but equally rewarding jetpack (dying) simulator from Fixpoint Productions that's gone free for the first time as Apple's Free App of the Week. We really liked the game when we reviewed it because while it's absurdly challenging, it's not impossible. So, when you actually get the hang of it, or at least as much as one can get the hang of a rocket strapped to ones back, the game becomes incredibly satisfying. Mastering your jetpack doesn't come from buying the right upgrade but rather having the right feel for it. There are many iOS games that border on the impossible and infuriating but not that many that walk the fine line of "nigh impossible yet doable once mastered" (after many, many attempts)...

The incredibly fun and well-designed Rust Bucket [Free] by Nitrome was just missing one thing in my estimation, as I said in my review: more fixed levels to play with once you beat the quasi-tutorial's 10 levels. And more were indeed teased through a locked menu on the screen, but they were not to be had quite yet. Thankfully, the teased level pack is finally here, and Rust Bucket has 10 additional levels to play through. These introduce new mechanics, but because you're also playing with things that you've already messed around with, you'll be mixing old knowledge with new. The new levels are pretty challenging, and it's worth jumping back into this update...

'Momoka: An Interplanetary Adventure' Review - It Ain't Pretty, But It's Great Fun

From the first time I saw it, Momoka [$6.99] always had me a bit on edge. It looked cool, but something about the game's production values always seemed to leave me feeling like this could be a mediocre game. The visuals felt like they were on the wrong side between ugly and intentional low fidelity. Something about the way characters moved and operated left me feeling like this could be what could be succinctly summarized as a janky game. Janky games are frustrating, because they could and should be great, but often get in the way of themselves with things like bugs, poor controls, and ill-advised design decisions. Momoka certainly flirts with jankiness, and has some rough edges that make it not the smoothest experience ever, no. But it's constructed so well, that its flaws stay out of the way of this fantastic Metroidvania platformer...

Not many know this, but just before there was the digital-only Hearthstone CCG, there was Solforge [Free] by Stoneblade, a CCG that tried to take advantage of what a digital platform has to offer. The game's been around for quite some time, but it's still in Beta and, unfortunately, its great gameplay ideas are hidden under a very clunky UI that was supposed to be a quick example of how the game will play rather than the game's actual UI. The game's been stuck with that UI - and with many other client technical issues - for years now, but, fortunately, we are getting closer to the release of the new UI that should give the game the opportunity to get new players aboard. Back in October, we got a first glimpse of the new UI, and I was really disappointed at what I saw even though I knew it was still a work-in-progress...

If you've played Rymdkapsel, you probably know that the developer managed to make a highly-engaging game with minimalist graphics, and Twofold Inc. [$3.99], the developer's new game that's just released on the App Store, looks to do the same. As we wrote about a few days ago, this is one of those games that's hard to describe without actually seeing it in action, and even a simple trailer can't really do it justice. The developer describes the game as a "humble puzzle game" where you scroll the playfield to unravel the tiles, then make a path to clear them away. The levels are never-ending, there are no time limits, and in general the game seems to be more of an introspective puzzle rather than a frantic one like most puzzle games on the App Store...

You shouldn't be surprised that we couldn't stop talking about the fantastic Downwell [$2.99], the game that's turned dropping down a well into an art. We voted it as our GOTY Runner Up, and it found its way in many of our 'best games of the year' lists. If you're an Android user, you can finally see what the fuss is all about since the game has just dropped (pun intended) on Android. If you don't know what the fuss is about, well, I'm slightly surprised to be honest. As we've talked about in our review and in our many discussions of the game, Downwell is an action platformer about a character falling down a well and trying to avoid being killed by the many enemies and hazards. The way your character survives the drop is by using his gun boots - which fire bullets straight down - to both slow his fall and take out any enemies that are in the way...

We have a brand new Hearthstone [Free] Tavern Brawl today, and I'm quite happy about that. I always like to see what new ideas the developers come up with, Miniature Warfare is all about shrinking your minions down all the way, which should make for some very interesting games. Specifically, that pesky Shrinkmeister turned all the Hearthstone cards into toys, and now all the minions are 1/1 and only cost 1 mana. So, this Brawl has two effects: on the one hand you'll be able to play any minion you want at pretty much any turn, but on the other all the battlecries and spells still work as designed, which means you can get some crazy battlecry effects for only 1 mana...

As you could probably tell if you’ve ever seen my forum avatar, I’m a huge Calvin & Hobbes fan. Aside from how funny, intelligent, and surprisingly philosophical the strip could be, one of my favorite aspects was how the titular duo could go anywhere and do anything with just a cardboard box. It could be anything from a transmogrifier to a duplicator to a time machine, and each one led to a sense that anything was possible with a large enough box and an even larger imagination. Sky Chasers [Free] by Lucky Kat Studios attempts to tap into a similarly whimsical feeling, and--for the most part--it pulls it off...

Ever wondered what it takes to make a game like Fireproof Games' The Room Three [$4.99]? Is it a lot of work drawing and designing every single item in spectacular detail, or does it involve late-night sacrifices at the altar of the Game Design Gods? Fortunately (?) for all those involved, it's the former as we can see in this huge collection of art and sketches that went on to become the intriguing and quite beautiful The Room Three. The Flickr Album has more than 30 photos and really highlights the crazy amount of work that went into the making of the game. There are, for instance, detailed sketches and early 3D drawings of some of the boxes and items and the reasoning behind the inclusion of the various objects and locations, like explaining the inspiration behind the Paper Theater that players find in the mezzanine theater of the Library...

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