Category Archives: Games

The folks at Super Evil Megacorp have been busy lately. First, they announced a partnership with eSports giant ESL as well as the first official tournament for their mobile MOBA, Vainglory [Free / Free]. Second, they also announced an update that launches a hero skin system that’s been long desired. With such big changes in store for the game, we were fortunate enough to chat with Kristian Segerstrale, the COO of Super Evil Megacorp and the Executive Director of Vainglory to get some added details on these two significant announcements...

Dungeon Link [Free] is a clever game: it combines line-drawing puzzles, where you have to connect different sets of dots with lines that don't intersect, and makes it into an RPG battling system. Characters have different attacks and do more damage the longer their lines are, and the more they run over and by enemies. You can level up, combine, and evolve your characters, just like many free-to-play social RPGs, but the puzzle gameplay is the real hook here. Once auto-battling gets involved and the concept of the game just proves to be something you can just ditch entirely, then a lot of the charm that Dungeon Link first has goes away...

Today, Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time [Free], is celebrating by giving away stuff to its players. More specifically, Plants vs. Zombies, one of iOS' oldest and most popular franchises, is celebrating its 6th birthday. When Plants vs. Zombies hit the App store in 2009, it was one of the earliest tower defense iOS games, and it quickly found its way on many iPhones and iPads around the world. Just in the first nine days, the original Plants vs. Zombies sold more than 300,000 copies on iOS, making it the fastest-selling PopCap video game. This franchise gradually shambled its way on all kinds of platforms and then was followed by a sequel, Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time, in 2013. Just to understand the franchise's reach, according to EA, Plants Vs. Zombies 2 has been downloaded more than 100 million times since its debut on iOS and still sees an average 9.5 million unique game sessions started each day...

Freebie Alert: '2-bit Cowboy' Goes Free for the First Time to Celebrate its One-Year Anniversary

It's hard to believe, but it's already been an entire year since Crescent Moon and Cascadia Games released their monochrome "Westernvania" platformer 2-bit Cowboy [$0.99] on the App Store. But time flies, and in celebration of this momentous anniversary the game has been discounted from its already-paltry price of 99¢ all the way down to free. The clever term of Westernvania is a play on Metroidvania–an action platformer that takes place in one big level map that slowly opens up new areas as new abilities are attained by your character–but, you know, with a Western theme. ..

'Kayos' Review - Star Faux

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$1.99 Buy Now

Over the course of my entire iOS lifetime (which started in 2009), I've probably played a couple hundred runner games. Although I haven't given them an equal time of day, for some reason the genre just doesn't get old, and I can spend at least an afternoon with them as long as they're semi-competent experiences. Kayos [$1.99] is another cool little endless runner based on flight that won't garner your interest long, but enough to make an impact...

Apparently, the economy is still in the dumps because even stealing cars comes cheaper now with Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas[$6.99] dropping to its lowest price ever. Rockstar's GTA: San Andreas, the iOS port of the fantastic PS2 game originally released in 2004, made quite a few gamers very happy when it hit the App Store in 2013, and now those who don't already own the game can enjoy San Andreas at probably the lowest price ever on any platform. In our review, we talked about how the power of iOS devices fixed all the technical issues of the original version and how the on-screen controls work pretty well (there's controller support too). The game is absolutely enormous and with cloud-saving enabled (through Rockstar Social Club), you won't have to worry about anyone stealing your save games...

I could talk to you about Ustwo's Monument Valley[$3.99], which has just dropped to its lowest price ever, in so many ways. I could wax poetically about its illusory essence or its mysterious blank-faced protagonist. Or maybe just mention the game's abundance of awards, among them Apple's 2014 iPad Game of the Year, 2015 BAFTA for Best Mobile & Handheld, Apple's 2014 Design Award, or 2015 GDC Innovation Award. Or, of more interest to those who enjoy their TV shows, I could talk about how the fictional President Frank Underwood - of House of Cards fame - goes from blasting people on Call of Duty in the first season to pondering his next machination over a solemn game of Monument Valley. I could even talk about how its brevity actually enhances its originality. Or maybe just add a trailer for those who prefer the visual over the textual...

Industrial Toy's Midnight Star [Free], the F2P first-person shooter from Alex Seropian, one of Bungie's founders, Paul Bertonethe, one of Halo's designers, and with a story written by John Scalzi, is getting a big 1.1 update soon that will mainly focus on improving the game's multiplayer experience. For those who aren't familiar with the game, it's a first-person on-rails shooter with a multiplayer component focused around a variety of challenges where players go for highest score, most headshots, quickest time, etc. The devs have said that among other features, this update will add new weapons, sharing of video highlights, and giving more Challenge timer options...

'Dominion Online' is Getting Closer to Release, Probably

If you enjoy card games and you own an iPad, then I'm pretty sure you're one of those who seriously roll their eyes when they hear the word "Dominion." For the uninitiated, Dominion was created by game designer Donald X. Vaccarino and published by Rio Grande Games in 2008 and is seen by many as the grandfather of deck-building card games, and even though some find it a bit boring, its influence is seen in many great card games including Stoneblade's Ascension. Back in 2012, Goko Games tried to develop an HTML5-based platform in order to enable iOS players to enjoy cross-platform gaming without needing to download a separate app. Goko based its whole marketing on launching Dominion as its flagship game to prove the technology worked. Notable as the ambition was, it failed so miserably that it actually became a joke among iOS gamers...

'Warhammer 40,000: Armageddon' is Looking for Beta Testers (or Cannon Fodder)

Slitherine is continuing its inexorable march to conquer both PC and iOS with its announcement today that iPad beta testers for Warhammer 40,000: Armageddon are expected to report for duty here. For those who lower their gaze when miniatures take the field to slaughter each other, Warhammer 40,000 (or 40K), is a tabletop miniature wargame produced by Games Workshop which has a pretty huge following. Recently, there have been as many Warhammer games on iOS as there are half-painted miniatures in the houses of many thirty-something guys. However, this iOS game will probably be among the best Warhammer games on any platform...

Sometimes getting a second chance works to your benefit, and this seems to be the case for Angry Bugs' Drylands, a post-apocalyptic RPG that briefly appeared on the App Store a few weeks ago only to disappear like all joy and happiness did in the recent Batman trilogy. Drylands' developers apparently fell victim to iOS 8.3 (as did many other developers, most notably Spiderweb Software), and decided to pull the game and fix it rather than just wash their hands of the whole thing. Many in the forums were wondering what the future holds for Drylands, and, fortunately, I have some good news on that front...

Super Evil Megacorp’s hit mobile MOBA Vainglory [Free / Free] has been steadily adding content in terms of new heroes, UI modifications and countless balance changes. However, one area that players have been clamoring for are hero skins in the same vein as nearly every other MOBA. With today’s game update, those prayers have finally been answered...

'Dungeon of Madness' Review - Pixel Giant Produces a Puzzle Gem

If you know Game Stew, you're probably already enamored with their high innovation to pixel ratio. There is always much fun to be had in their 8 bit styled titles and Dungeon of Madness[$0.99] is no exception. They burst onto the scene strong with 2012's Tower of Fortune[Free] and have been carefully extending their visual charm to various game types since then. Game Stew has successfully built a franchise in which they can now deliver various game types under a very solid unifying motif. The one in question today definitely lives up to expectations. Before we get into this game, Lets get some thing straight here. Game Stew is not a huge AAA corporate game dev. They have been an indie dev that has survived for the last 3 years continuously putting out reliably good games. I get that some people don't like the indie dev style, but there is substance under the pixellacious veneer. Like all of the best indie games, gameplay is the front and center attraction and it doesn't disappoint. If you are one to become unduly disturbed that a game may get extra recognition if it has this specific graphic style, worry not, white knight of modern graphics. This game could have been made with ascii characters or with hieroglyphics or cutting edge body movement capture technology. The fun transcends the medium...

Last week we offered a glimpse into the strange world of Star Wars: Card Trader [Free], a card collector app presented by Topps that consists entirely of digital Star Wars cards. Part of the strangeness with this app has to do with the fact that there are no gameplay elements at all. In fact, the whole allure Card Trader centers around purchasing card packs (typically with IAP) and trading cards amongst the community to collect sets. It’s a fascinating game that’s managed to cultivate a community willing to pay good money of digital versions of what used to be actual trading cards...

This week’s event in DeNA’s social RPG Final Fantasy: Record Keeper [Free] (which launched on Saturday night) not only offers a pretty awesome character in Final Fantasy VI’s Celes, but it also offers a first look at the third type of special event available within the game. As is custom for these events, we thought we’d take a closer look at the first of hopefully many Survival Events, provide some tips on the various bosses you may encounter, and then offer some closing comments on how best to utilize the Runic Knight as you venture into the Magitek Facility Infiltration event...

Long a staple of the Japanese games industry, romance games have been slowly gaining a bit of a foothold in the west. It seems to have gone hand in hand with the establishment of the visual novel genre outside of Japan, owing to break-out hits like Ace Attorney [Free] and 999 [$4.99]. Like many sub-genres, romance games got their start primarily by targeting men or teenaged boys, offering a wide selection of cute girls with varying personalities for the player to try to woo. Unlike many sub-genres, somewhere along the line publishers got the idea that such games might appeal to the other half of the human race, too. While there are plenty of games for all combinations of gender and orientation in the modern romance game scene, there's no question that the biggest share of the non-explicit market is aimed squarely at women...

'Subterfuge' Strategy/Diplomacy Game Preview - Fascinating Machinations of Machines

One of my favorite aspect of strategy games is the clash of wits and the constant attempt to outmaneuver your opponent. Yet, AI opponents never really give me those glorious moments that a strategy board game can, the knowledge that you've just outmaneuvered someone who sees and understands the game in the same way you do but still couldn't figure out the trap you'd been setting the last few turns. So, when I first heard about Subterfuge, a one-week long multiplayer game of strategy and diplomacy currently in alpha developed by a team consisting of Ron Carmel (of World of Goo), Noel Llopis (of Amazing Alex), and artist Shane Nakamura (of Zombie Gunship), my strategy sense started tingling. According to the developers, the game was greatly influenced by Neptune's Pride and Diplomacy, which is music to my ears. After spending about a week with the game, I have to say that I'm really looking forward to the game coming out because Subterfuge really brings diplomacy to the fore and will be a great game to play with friends (as long as you don't mind losing a few of them after you double-cross them for the tenth time)...

'Hearthstone' Blackrock Mountain Adventure Review - The Best Way to Experience this Fantastic CCG

After five weeks of playing, thinking, and writing about Hearthstone's [FreeBlackrock Mountain Adventure (BRM), the fun is over and we are back to playing plain, old Hearthstone. No more Wings to explore, no more crazy bosses to tackle, and, more importantly, no new cards to get. What's done is done though, and now that BRM is over, we can look back and see how Blizzard did in its second attempt at an Adventure after the successful Curse of Naxxramas. If we look at the Adventure as a whole, I believe that Blizzard did a great job thematically, perhaps better than with Naxxramas, as the Dragon-and-Fire themes were represented very well in BRM's various wings. The card rewards were also great, and although they might not revolutionize the meta, I think they'll help turn the RNG down a notch. BRM wasn't perfect, though, and some of the issues that Naxxramas had also surfaced here, especially in terms of the Heroic Bosses and the lack of extra deck slots. But let's not get ahead of ourselves...

I'm generally terrible at roguelikes. What can I say, I'm young and reckless! But I love the genre (and its conventions that inspire other games) because they're highly replayable and demand that I get better at them. When Steam had its recent roguelike sale, I found out that I owned more than half of the games on sale – and bought a few more. So, MicRogue [$1.99] definitely appealed to me, especially as a bite-sized roguelike. And hey, I do love me some pixel art. Thankfully, MicRogue delivers solid, entry-level roguelike gameplay...

Minimalist platformer games have become one of my favorite unlikely genres on mobile devices. Years ago I would have scoffed the idea of running and jumping with precision on a touch-specific control scheme, but at this point, we have MFi controllers and a number of talented developers that make it work regardless. Burn it Down [Free] may not have the former convenience, but it works on multiple levels...

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