Category Archives: Platform

Hands-On With the 'Super Mario Run' Demo

When Nintendo announced that Apple Stores would have demos of Super Mario Run a week in advance, my initial reaction was "cool!" followed "Wait, I'm going to have to go to the mall during Christmas shopping season." Once again, the mall has become my Waterloo. Yet, it wound up being not that bad: not much traffic, easy parking, no wait to get an iPhone to play the game. I was able to play Super Mario Run in peace. My experience with Super Mario Run followed a similar narrative arc: initial excitement, then a bit of disappointment, before realizing things were actually pretty cool. ..

Colorful Platformer 'Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire' Hits the App Store

Back in March during GDC, I was fortunate enough to check out a very promising upcoming platformer called Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire. I had never heard of the game before, nor of developer PlayPretend, and they didn't have an appointment to meet with us or anything like that. They had heard we were at GDC and simply tracked us down and we were able to squeeze in an impromptu demo between meetings, and it ended up being one of my favorite games I saw at the conference. I love conferences like GDC precisely for those unexpected moments when some super awesome game just comes out of the woodwork. Anyway, about a month later PlayPretend released two new videos showing off more of Le Parker, but things had been awfully quiet since then. However, just last week the developers popped back up on our forums to announce that Le Parker was under review with Apple, and just a few moments ago Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire [$2.99] officially went live in the App Store...




There are a wide variety of genres and types of games on the App Store, many of which would only work on the pure touchscreen-centric input that the iPhone offers. While this results in a lot of imaginative and innovative experiences, I still end up gravitating towards platformers when I'm looking for a new game to play. I don't know whether it's their intrinsic familiarity or maybe just a personal predisposition towards the genre, but games such as Mos Speedrun 2 [$1.99] and Kero Blaster [$5.99] provided incredibly compulsive platforming action that was impossible to put down. Tons of Bullets [$1.99] follows in a similar vein - with both graphics and gameplay that evoke a bygone era of chaotic 2D platformers, the developers created a predictable but fun premium game that was a bargain for its two dollar price of entry. While the developers have supported the game with successive updates since its launch, Tons of Bullets has today gone on sale for the first time ever for only $0.99, which is a fantastic price for anyone looking for even more enemies to run, shoot and jump at...

When I first heard about Eggggg [$3.99], I couldn't help but agree with the developer's own assessment that the title was 'ridiculous' and 'crazy'. After all, Eggggg is a game where you literally propel your protagonist around a variety of colorful environments with their own vomit. However, to describe Eggggg as a 'sick' platformer would be correct in every sense of the word - behind the rather odd concept is a charming adventure which is really unlike similar games on the App Store. While our review back in October was unrelentingly positive, the one issue I had was its relative brevity - once the mechanics have been mastered and the admittedly challenging levels have all been completed, it's impossible not to want more of the game's eccentric charm. Thankfully, developers Hyper Games have announced the first major update for Eggggg set to launch in December, with some cool new Christmas-themed additions as well as Apple TV and MFI controller support...

'Super Cat Tales' Review - Don't Paws, Play This Nya-ow

In spite of the seeming limitation of having no physical buttons by default, iOS has a lot of really great platformers. Some of them get by with virtual controls, putting some of the burden on the player to simply get used to them. That's fine, but unless the game is a port from another platform, I'm not sure if it's really the best way to go. I think some of the best platformers on iOS are the ones that avoid the temptation of using virtual buttons and find a way to build a game around a more fitting setup. Sure, you have to sacrifice some of the conventional ways of designing levels and obstacles, but in doing that, many games find something new and interesting...

'Mikey Jumps' Review - A Divine Slice of Mike

That Mikey sure gets around. He uses hooks, boots, and even shorts in his previous adventures on iOS. But what if Mikey were to put down his shorts for a minute and just, you know, jump? Alright, all kidding aside, the Mikey games have always been about precise platforming, a gameplay mechanic that usually involves all kinds of jumping. So what is the deal with this new game? Well, I suspect Mikey Jumps [Free] got its name from the fact that you're really only dealing with what would be the jump button in previous games. As it did in those games, it does all sorts of things here, but the key difference between this spin-off and the mainline games it that Mikey automatically runs forward at all times. Your job is to make sure you're hitting that jump button at the right times to keep Mikey (or friends) alive, collect lots of coins, and grab the star at the end of each stage...

'RETSNOM' Review - Yako S'ti

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I think the first platformer I ever played where you could manipulate gravity was Irem's Metal Storm for the 8-bit NES. It's a side-scrolling action game, a genre that at the time was so flooded that you virtually had to have some kind of gimmick to stand out. You were mostly jumping and shooting, but you also had a handy button that let you flip to the ceiling. That mechanic showed up here and there over the years before the popular VVVVVV [$2.99] used it better than any game had before, at least in my opinion. It makes for clever puzzles, but more importantly, it rewrites the rules of one of gaming's most well-worn genres. So it's not surprising that a lot of games that followed VVVVVV drew that mechanic into their tool sets. Unfortunately, in becoming a trend, flipping gravity has lost a lot of what it can offer a game...

About a month ago we posted about how developer Kumobius, who you probably know from such hits as Bean Dreams [$2.99], Duet [$2.99], and Time Surfer [$0.99], were looking for beta testers for their new mobile game project, a platformer of sorts called High Risers. Well apparently the testing period went just fine as just this morning Kumobius pulled the rusty old release lever and High Risers [Free] is now available in the App Store. ..

RareSloth's fantastic puzzle platformer King Rabbit [Free] received a fairly minor update today, but one that's leading to much bigger and better things. Today's update adds ReplayKit support so you can broadcast your crazy King Rabbit exploits for the world to see. There's also now an in-game diamond counter so it should be easier for you to keep track of finding those tricky hidden diamonds, and in the spirit of Halloween there's now some new skins in the in-game store to decorate your rabbit for the holiday. The bigger news, though, is that the Fire Adventures level pack, which was released as paid DLC in May, is now permanently free for all players. ..

Late last night (in my timezone, anyway) a curious update appeared for Sonic CD [Free] on iOS, the fantastic remastered version that originally released back in December of 2011. The update text was vague, and simply said "Sonic took a trip to the past and decided to change the game's code. That's right, Sonic CD is now FREE!" As someone who has been burned plenty of times in the past by a previously paid game going free, as I'm sure many others have, I was justifiably suspicious of this new update. And after Carter played guinea pig and downloaded the new update it confirmed my fears: Sonic CD was now free to download and ad-supported, with a $1.99 IAP to remove said ads. Normally that wouldn't be a big deal, except that the ads showed up even for previous owners who had already paid for Sonic CD. There are a few different ways to go about switching a paid app to free, but this was not one of them, and the 1.5 Star average rating of the otherwise phenomenal Sonic CD in the App Store showed that...

'Eggggg – The Platform Puker' Review – Engrossingly Gross

I’m not going to lie. When you first start this game, it might seem a little grody. You might feel a tiny bit nauseated. But that goes away quickly, and what you’re left with is one of my favorite games of this year. It is a solid platformer first and foremost, drawing on several great inspirations, but it’s also outrageously silly and funny entirely through its world, art style, and sound effects. This is a triumphant tale of allergies, cyborg chickens, your mean Aunt Doris, and eggs. This is Eggggg – The Platform Puker [$3.99]...

'Dan the Man' Review - A Blast While it Lasts

'Dan the Man' Review - A Blast While it Lasts

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October 20th, 2016 12:30 PM EST by Shaun Musgrave in $2.99, 4.5 stars, Action, Arcade, Free, iPad Games, iPhone games, Platform, Reviews
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One of the more reliable means of drawing attention in marketing is to use the biggest numbers you can find for your product or service's features. It's historically been very useful in selling video games, with RPGs claiming dozens of hours of gameplay, open world games boasting about the sizes of their maps, and platformer games talking up the number of levels they have. Thing have become ludicrous in mobile gaming, with Candy Crush offering a couple thousand levels and many platformers eventually expanding out to over a hundred stages. Never mind that the levels might be short, or easily constructed. The players will find that out later, and when they do, they may well not even care...

It's always great to see inventive Steam releases finally make their way to the iPhone, especially when many of their unique mechanics are a perfect fit to touch controls, and normally at a far more palatable price of entry. RETSNOM [$0.99] - taking a leaf from the Alucard book of naming - is the next game to follow in the illustrious path of PC ports, and with an incredibly cool concept of being able to alter the construction of levels to progress, is sure to distinguish itself from the abundance of other platforming titles on the App Store...

A few weeks back, we wrote about a game called Zombie King, a platformer with the clever concept of upgrading your King a bit at time to bring him back to his former virility and humanity. That game is now called Return of the Zombie King [$2.99] (any similarity with the Lord of the Rings is probably accidental) and is out on the App Store. In the game you play as the re-animated corpse of a former King who was summarily exiled and drowned. Now, you'll be running and jumping your way to collecting as many coins as you can from each run to gradually upgrade your bony figure into the King you once were...

Everyone has a genre they couldn't live without. For some youngsters, it's survival games, which can extend to Minecraft. For others, it's sports games, and the thrill of drafting out a new fantasy team with incoming college players thrown into the fray. For me, my choice ebbs and flows depending on the year, but the most consistent one I'm always falling back on is platformers. Whether it's those of the mascot variety with strict adherence to 3D standards and wonky cameras, or the tried and true 2D approach, you can put pretty much any one of them in front of me and I'll at least give it a go. Tons of Bullets [$1.99] caught my eye in name alone, but it ended up being about more than just blasting things...

'Super Mario Run' Already Has 20 Million Users Signed up to Be Notified of Its Release

You'd think that, especially after the runaway success of Pokemon GO [Free], that Super Mario Run [Free]'s impending success would come as a surprise to no one. Sure, the Mario brand is arguably the biggest in gaming, and with consultants predicting potentially billions of downloads, it's a given that Super Mario Run will be one of the biggest mobile releases this year, if not the biggest of all time. However, while estimations are all well and good, they're nothing compared to actual quantifiable numbers and statistics, which are the only real way of communicating the reality of Super Mario Run's success. And wow, are such numbers impressive - in an interview with BuzzFeed Japan, Tim Cook revealed that Super Mario Run already has 20 million iOS users who have signed up to be notified on the game's release this December...

Last week saw the launch of many interesting App Store releases, one of which was Shadow Bug Rush [Free], the free to play endless alternative to the similarly named Shadow Bug [$3.99] that released earlier this year. Featuring a cool graphical style reminiscent of Badlands [$2.99], and some hardcore action platforming action to boot, Muro Studios crafted a game that became a cult favorite amongst the iOS community. While the endless iteration launched for a sweet price of zero dollars, the original Shadow Bug has today also been reduced to absolutely free, which is a great chance for fans of the new game to try out the fully fledged adventure alternative...

It seems like Dan the Man [Free] has forever been in soft launch, teasing gamers from outside the lucky few regions that received the game early with its awesome platformer beat-em-up hybrid gameplay. In truth, it's only been a little under two months - but ever since having watched the fantastic eponymous cartoon series and the hands-on footage from GDC in March, I've been dying to get my hands on Halfbrick's newest game. Thankfully, the wait is now over - Dan the Man has launched worldwide on the App Store, and considering both Halfbrick's incredible track record and the game's low price of zero dollars, I'd definitely recommend booting the game up, and subsequently booting the eclectic cast of enemies where it hurts...

Despite the fact their library of App Store games isn't particularly extensive, Kumobius Games have created a strong reputation for simple yet brilliant experiences that could only have been made for a device like the iPhone. While Time Surfer [$0.99] and the original Bean's Quest [$2.99] were arcade classics, it was Duet [$2.99] that made waves amongst the iOS community and more casual gamers alike, receiving critical acclaim in our review, and recognition from Apple as one of the best apps of 2013. Sadly, we haven't heard much from Kumobius since 2014's stunning Bean Dreams [$2.99], however that has today changed, as the developers have announced on our forums a new free to play platformer called High Risers, and are looking for beta testers to try out this interesting take on the auto runner genre...

Did you play Day of the Tentacle [$4.99] and think "I like how this game makes me feel stupid, but would like it better if it was a platformer?" Well, that's Donut Games' Vulture Island [$4.99] in a nutshell. It sends you on the quests of a LucasArts point-and-click adventure game, but with 2D platforming. You will use items in weird ways on other items, trying to solve puzzles that will make you curse yourself and slap your forehead over how obvious the solution seems after the fact. It's all that fun, but as a platforming game, a clever combination that's made for another winner from Donut Games...

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