Category Archives: Games

The practice of cloning is troublesome for many reasons. There are the obvious problems, but beyond those, the fear of a game being perceived as a clone stifles the natural process of building on a great idea. We've seen some pretty shameful clones in the App Store's history, but perhaps none of them have been as harmful to the original game as 2048 was to Threes! [$2.99]. A marketplace battle took place, and I think it's safe to say a lot of people felt the wrong game won there. I'm not sure if the cloud hanging over that has kept more developers from taking a crack at ideas inspired by Threes!, but if it has, more's the shame. Still, we see the odd swing at doing something interesting with the compelling swiping and combining mechanism that Threes! introduced so well. The latest is Dungeon Tiles [Free], from developer Takashi Iyoda...

Sometimes I forget how many Hearthstone [Free] Tavern Brawls we've had so far, and then I get one like today's Clockwork Card Dealer, which was first seen back in October, and I realize that Blizzard has been pumping out these brawls for quite some time now. In case you either don't remember this brawl or weren't playing the game back in October, let me explain how it works. In this brawl, Tinkertown gnomes have gone for a protorype card-bot that will draw you a card with a mana cost equal to the mana you have that turn. So, in turn 4 you'll draw a 4-mana card, if you have one in your deck that is. As you can guess, these rules ensure that you draw cards on curve as long as you have cards of that cost in your deck...




By now, the social RPG genre has found a pretty comfortable groove. Take some kind of battle mechanic, staple the now-standard collect, fuse, evolve leveling system onto it, and make sure you have an ever-expanding line-up of desirable goodies for players to chase after. The recipe is simple enough, though finding success with it is another matter. There's a lot of competition, and players have got to be getting a little tired of the same old. That's likely as good an explanation as any for why the social RPG genre has started to stretch its legs out a little. If there's one company that has been trying seemingly every permutation of features to try to score a hit, it's Square Enix. Very few of their efforts have ever left the shores of Japan, but that might be starting to change. Not long ago, we saw a wide release for Kingdom Hearts Unchained Chi [Free], and now we've got one for Final Fantasy Brave Exvius [Free], Square's collaboration with Brave Frontier [Free] developers Alim...

Back in January Roadhouse Games announced a new mobile RPG based on the legendary band Iron Maiden. While that sounded like an odd combination, the game actually made a lot of sense as it let you play as a team of various types of Eddies, the bands longtime undead mascot, and play through the crazy environments show on the band's album art throughout the years. In short, it was a free to play battling and collecting RPG like those that are so popular on mobile, but dripping in Iron Maiden fan service. Following a brief soft-launch in late May, today Iron Maiden: Legacy of the Beast [Free] has released worldwide...

'Monster Hunter Freedom Unite' Review - Good-bye Free Time, Hello Wildlife Slaughter

Editor's Note: This game was recently updated to be playable again after being broken for ages. It's an incredible port from an amazing game franchise, so we're bumping the review up to the top of TA in case anyone missed it the first time around! Anyway, here's Shaun's original review which we published almost exactly two years ago, on July 3rd 2014:


Capcom's iOS games present a truly insane roll of the dice. You've got terribly reimagined ports of classics like Mega Man X [$4.99], wonderful ports of underappreciated games like Ghost Trick [Free], ports that are maybe a bit too perfect like Street Fighter II Collection [$3.99] or the dearly departed Marvel Vs. Capcom 2, and games that take familiar names and series and go in strange directions like Ghosts 'n Goblins Gold Knights [$0.99]. This time, however, they've really gone and done it. Just when you think they can't make you doubt them any further, they go and totally redeem themselves with an absolutely fantastic iOS version of Monster Hunter Freedom Unite [$14.99].

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One of the unique phenomenons of the App Store ecosystem is the sudden and inexplicable rise of certain games. While the holy grail of creating an app that skyrockets to the top of the charts was merely a pipe dream for the vast majority of developers, it was also a reason why the iOS gaming scene became so popular - especially in the early days. Perchang [$1.99] - with its current position at #3 for paid apps in both the UK and US at time of writing, and #1 of all paid games in the former - joins the extremely exclusive club of chart toppers that don't feature a bird motif, and appears to have achieved overnight success purely through creating a beautiful premium experience that has caught the eye of everyone from App Store veterans to those who rarely use their mobile devices for gaming...

If you're looking for visually-impressive fast-action MMOs to play on your iOS device, you don't have to look much further than Snail Games, the developer of Age of Wushu Dynasty [Free] and Taichi Panda: Heroes [Free]. If you enjoy games such as those two, you'll probably want to give Kingdom Warriors [Free] a try. This just-released action MMO takes players to the Three Kingdoms era and has them fighting to defeat the rising chaos (I know, very original story). The game offers 40 plus heroes to collect and command, and you have AI-controlled lieutenants to help you in your fights. In typical RPG fashion, you'll collect and upgrade items and customize your equipment as you level up...

'Drifty Dash' Review - Grand Theft Cartoon

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There's a distinct lack of car combat and otherwise silly vehicular based games in the current climate. Whereas everyone was chasing that almighty Destruction Derby or Twisted Metal dollar back in the day with entertaining, if flawed releases like Vigilante 8, nowadays a true successor is a rarity. Heck, even Mario Kart 8 had a ham-stringed battle mode. But with the multitude of platforms anything is possible, and although Drifty Dash [Free] doesn't come close to honoring its pedigree, it's not a bad way to pass the time...

Ben Brode Talks State of the Game, Warrior is All the Rage, Yogg-Saron Rules, and More Weekly 'Hearthstone' News in Touchstone #54

Welcome to another Touchstone Tavern, our weekly roundup of all things Hearthstone [Free]. I've (almost) finished my move across the Atlantic, and now we are back to business as usual (minus the slight timezone change). This week we have Ben Brode talking about the current state of the game as well as what the team is looking to fix in the future, a pro going to legend in three days with a new F2P account,  the diversity found in the Warrior class, the current state of the meta - hint, Aggro Shaman still rules - and much more. I hope you've been enjoying playing Hearthstone and the diversity in the meta is allowing you to have fun. Do let me know in the comments what you think about the state of the game. Okay, on we go...

After teasing for a few days, Supercell has released Clash Royale's [Free] 1.4 update that brings plenty of new things to the game. The first big feature is Tournaments. Once you've unlocked the Tournaments mode, you can create a local tournament based on your location. The Tournaments will offer "HUGE rewards" (Supercell's words, not mine), so that should be a strong incentive to try and organize or participate in one. In typical Clash Royale fashion, you won't be able to enter another tournament while you're unlocking your Tournament reward chest. Any new way of playing the game is fine with me since it should keep it fresher...

Leap Day [Free] is quite literally the gift that keeps on giving. Playing new and varied levels every day has proved to be an exciting experience which has captivated our forums and doesn't seem to be getting old anytime soon. Furthermore, the developers Nitrome have tirelessly supported the game with content updates adding new characters and other cool features, despite the fact it only launched on the App Store less than two months ago. This trend has continued, as today a new update for Leap Day has released with new themes, levels and more...

Supercell continues to spoil parts of the Clash Royale [Free] upcoming update, and this time around we got to see two new Legendaries coming to the game. The Log is a Legendary spell unlocked at Arena 6, and it will cost you 2 elixir to cast. When you cast the Log, you'll see, well, a log roll down the lane, damaging any units in the way. As the video points, this is the first 2-cost card that can take out a Princess, so it will be a very useful counter. And if nothing else, it's fun seeing that log run over everything in its path. The second Legendary card revealed in this sneak peek is the Lumberjack, a unit unlocked at Arena 8 and with a 4-Elixir cost. What is very interesting about this card is that after the Lumberjack perishes, he "spills" a Rage spell that continues to damage your opponent's units or buildings...

If you've been wishing for new Clash Royale [Free] units, you're in luck as Supercell's just revealed the Ice Spirit and the Bowler in Sneak Peek 2 for the upcoming update. New units are essential to keeping a game exciting, so I'm glad to see new ones coming our way. The Bowler is a 6-cost Epic card that unlocks at the new Arena 8, and the unit acts similarly to the Clash of Clans Bowler unit. In other words, he hauls boulders that bounce twice off their target, landing behind for a double strike. The first boulder also does pushback damage. As expected, the unit is slow and can take plenty of damage...

Everyone knows that Jean Claude Van Damme is the true Master of the Splits, but now you can a master of splits yourself and you (probably) won't even pull a muscle trying. Split Masters [Free] is a new high-score game that is best described as a vertical Daddy Long Legs [Free]. Your job is to creep up a vertical shaft step by step all while doing the splits. Each tap of the screen alternates between each leg and much like Daddy Long Legs you'll need to find a nice rhythm and maintain a good balance in order to be successful...

From the moment the first details on Tap My Katamari [Free]were released, the overwhelming sentiment seemed to be that this game shouldn't be. The original Katamari Damacy was a small, creative, sincere game that somehow managed to become a big hit even though such qualities don't generally lead to success in the console space. Seeing the brand used for a fairly blatant attempt at getting a little cash from one of the mobile flavors of the moment just doesn't seem right to some people, and I can certainly understand that point of view. From where I'm sitting, the Katamari brand started being used against its original intentions almost immediately, with sequel after sequel only serving to diminish the power of the original. So, personally, I'm not disappointed because I think Tap My Katamari shouldn't be. I'm disappointed because Tap My Katamari shouldn't be this mediocre of a tapper...

We finally have a release date for the Minecraft movie, but it's a long way off. Excited? Well, I can understand any trepidation. Video game movies have been around for many years and, by general admission, haven't really shone at the box office. Take for example a movie like Super Mario Bros., the now-legendary attempt at translating the success of that mustachioed plumber to the big screen that, well, didn't go over well with anyone. Recently, though, we've had a glimmer of hope that movies based on video games are about the get their moment in the sun. Warcraft: The Beginning, for example, might not be doing that well in the States, but it's tearing the box offices internationally (especially in China). The Angry Birds movie didn't do that bad either, and the upcoming Assassin's Creed movie looks promising (fingers crossed). I'm also very curious to see what the Tetris sci-fi trilogy will be like and whether the Fruit Ninja movie will feature both ninjas and fruit...

If you're tired of seeing the same Arenas over and over again in Clash Royale [Free], the upcoming update should provide some relief to those tired eyes. As announced today in the first Sneak Peek (Supercell sure loves its sneak peeks), we are getting a new Arena 8 that will bump Legendary Arena to 9. Frozen Peak is, as you would imagine, ice-themed and looks pretty cold - unlike what most of you are experiencing at the moment. With many higher level players  spending quite some time in the same Arena before managing to move to the next one, a new Arena addition should make the game feel fresher. However, I'm starting to wonder whether having some gameplay changes in later Arenas would make the game more fun. What do you guys think?..

RPG Reload File 085 - 'Alphadia'

Hello, gentle readers, and welcome to the RPG Reload, the weekly feature where we all know at least one mysterious girl. Each week, we take a look at an RPG 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 landscape, or simply to take a deeper dive than our reviews typically allow. I try to select a balanced plate of RPGs from week to week in order to reflect the diversity of the genre, but if you feel like I'm missing something important, please let me know. You can do that by commenting below, posting in the Official RPG Reload Club thread in the forums, or by tweeting me at @RPGReload. You might not see your suggestion soon, but it will be added to the master list...

Our weekly post about all the new iOS game releases has come and gone, but as usual there were quite a few stragglers that launched a bit later than the others and as such missed out on being part of our list. So we figured what the heck, let's do another mini-roundup of some of those missed games. You probably already saw earlier today that popular rhtyhm-based roguelike Crypt of the NecroDancer surprise launched on iOS, as well as the minimalist strategy defense game Nanuleu which hit late last night. We've included those here just for completion's sake, but definitely check out some of the other tardy releases below...

I've talked about shoot 'em ups ad nauseum, and for good reason -- they're one heck of a genre, and they're making a big comeback on mobile devices. They're just so fun to play and prey off of your ability to react to any given situation. I mean, who doesn't love blowing up aliens or some otherwise evil entity while dodging a hail of bullets on-screen? It's pretty much a universally beloved pastime. Frantic Shooter [Free], which hails more from the Robotron school of thought than anything, is just as fun even with touch controls...

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