Category Archives: Platform

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 [$2.99] 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...

Donut is most well-known for making simple, mobile-friendly arcade-style games, but they went out of their own wheelhouse back in July of 2014 when they released the adventure platformer Traps n' Gemstones [$4.99], and they totally nailed it. It turns out that Donut was quite suited for more meaty experiences, but Traps n' Gemstones was more than two years ago, and in the time since then Donut went back to their usual (but still fantastic!) simpler fare. Well, it was just last week that we were first teased with images from a then-unnamed upcoming platformer from Donut Games, and only a couple days after that we got the first trailer as well as an official name for that game: Vulture Island. Donut was being a bit vague about the release date, simply saying it was "coming soon," but much to my own and I'm sure many others' pleasure Vulture Island [$2.99] has suddenly appeared in the App Store as of just a few moments ago...




'Magic Mansion' Review - Monochrome Monotony

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September 15th, 2016 1:15 PM EDT by Chris Carter in 3 stars, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Platform, Reviews, Universal
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If your game is going to be based on an endless principle, it better have a good hook. I'm not thinking narrowly in terms of unlocks, but a fundamental design philosophy that encourages the player to keep chipping away at their high score. A compelling art style and a responsive control scheme help, as endless games are generally great in quick spurts, and not with long marathon sessions...

In June of last year, a phenomenal puzzle/action platformer named Furdemption [$2.99] took the App Store by storm. We loved it in our review, as did players in our community. It was easily one of the best games of 2015. Then in September, just over a year ago in fact, developer RareSloth announced that a level editor would be coming to Furdemption that would allow players to create and share levels forever and ever and ever! Well, due to various circumstances, that level editor got put on hold indefinitely in November. The silver lining was that in place of the editor, RareSloth instead would be bringing out a brand new sequel to Furdemption, called King Rabbit [Free], which launched back in March and, like the original, was simply fantastic. Well, things are coming full circle as today RareSloth has announced that the level editor is back on and heading to King Rabbit early next year...

The development of Dust: An Elysian Tail [$5.99] is almost as great a fable as the actual game. Having been developed entirely by one man in over three and a half years, the title became a cult hit on every platform it released on, and since its launch on Xbox 360 back in 2012 has sold over a million copies. When Dust finally made its way to the App Store in October of last year, it received the same glowing reception as its console iterations amongst both gamers and critics, and our review acclaimed it as one of the best games of the year on iOS. It really was one not to miss, but if you did avoid picking it up at its full launch price of $5.99, Dust is now on sale for the borderline criminal price of only $0.99...

Nitrome have, in many ways, taken the helm from legendary iPhone developers Donut Games, in that they consistently release enjoyable retro experiences on the App Store that, while not necessarily the deepest of titles, hark back to a nostalgic and reductionist era, where video games focused on only a couple of interesting features, but did them really, really well. Whether it's the extremely compulsive Leap Day [Free] that has become a daily ritual for many, or something more immersive and traditional like Gunbrick [$2.99], Nitrome have rarely put a foot wrong. Magic Mansion [Free] appears to follow in these footsteps, as obvious inspiration from older Game Boy titles has resulted in a challenging yet charming retro platformer that, for the low, low price of absolutely nothing, is certainly worth a try for Nitrome fans or anyone looking for another arcade experience on the App Store...

Finally, Blitz Breaker [$2.99] is home where it belongs. After initially getting released on PC, Reece Kelly's fast-reaction platformer is on mobile. It's always felt like a perfect fit for phones in particular, what with the ability to simply swipe in the cardinal directions to launch your hero that way. Sure, it works perfectly fine from a keyboard, but it was easy to imagine doing all this with a thumb on a touchscreen. Lo and behold, it works beautifully...

Even though it's always fun looking forwards to an influx of new games in the middle of the week, it's also nice when things trickle out a bit earlier just to break things up. Just as we reported last week, Boncho Games' twitchy swipe-based platformer Blitz Breaker [$2.99] rolled out earlier this morning and is now available in the App Store. In case you've missed our previous coverage, here's the launch trailer for Blitz Breaker to give you an idea of how it all works...

Yeah, you read that right. ReRunners: Race for the World [Free] is a massive multiplayer online platformer. Kind of. You never actually see other live players, but the world is populated and alive regardless. And it is freaking outstanding. I have been utterly hooked by this game for the last week. Not only is the actual gameplay smooth, fun, and functional, but the crazy, vibrant, psychedelic world that you’ll explore is almost worth the price of admission alone. Or it would be, if this game even had a price tag. There is a ton of expressive, creative content, with loads of customization options for your character and upgrades. I implore you to read on, my friends, for this is one of the most original games I’ve had the good fortune to be completely addicted to this year...

I almost let this particular game slip completely under my radar, but when I saw some screenshots of it, I knew I absolutely had to play it. I just hoped that the game would live up to the aesthetic. Mahluk: Dark Demon [$0.99] is a hack and slash platformer in the vein of Goblin Sword [$1.99] and Sword of Xolan [$0.99] with a super dark art style in which the foreground is completely silhouetted. It’s not dark in the artsy Limbo [$4.99] kind of way, but more the heavy metal crap-sack demon infested Dark Souls style world way, which I am all about. And while the aesthetic is far and away the best thing this game has going for it, it plays pretty decently as well...

Back in late January, developer Kenny Sun released Circa Infinity [$2.99] to the App Store, describing it as a "brain-melting circular platformer." Well, seeing as actually describing in detail what it is you do in Circa Infinity is nearly impossible, "brain-melting circular platformer" is pretty on the money. Just know that there are trippy visuals, pumping audio, and frantic twitch platforming all wrapped up in a slick package. We loved Circa Infinity in our review, and that's probably the best place to find out just what this one is all about. Anyway, today is a big day for Circa Infinity as a huge new update was just released which adds in an entirely new endless mode called Circa Affinity...

Following a successful launch on Android, developer Toka Loka Games brought their gooey platformer Goo Saga [$1.99] to iOS in late April, and it absolutely floored me. You played as a ball of goo with a huge personality (as far as balls of goo go) making your way through tricky platforming levels that demanded you used your gooeyness to expand or shrink down in size, as well as your suite of upgradeable special abilities. In addition, it was one of the more visually pleasing games around. For a fiver, Goo Saga was a totally worthwhile endeavor, and we enjoyed it a lot in our review, but right now you can get all that gooey goodness for the sale price of just 99¢...

As video games increase in complexity, and as there is a unilateral push from both software and hardware developers for graphical prowess, there is a certain charm from games that choose to reminisce on days gone by. Whether it’s titles such as Downwell [$2.99] which have the difficult yet extremely rewarding arcade style action that has been lost over the years, or classics such as 1-Bit Ninja [$2.99] that throwback directly to the 2D side scrolling platformer days of the Mario series, the most successful retro titles on any device are the ones that utilise their source material perfectly while either refining it to perfection or adding unique, modern twists on the formula. However, the schematics for ‘retro’ games in the current gaming environment run a fine line that is more than just surface deep - if it’s too complex, you simply have a modern title under a wrapper of pixel art graphics. On the other hand, if the game is too simple it may just serve as a reminder to why we no longer spend our time squinting at monochrome screens without a backlight. 2-bit Cowboy Rides Again [$1.99] unfortunately is a prime example of the latter - some good level design and interesting ideas are let down by forced artificial difficulty, and ultimately the retro nucleus of the title ends up holding the game back rather than letting it run free...

Never Alone: Ki Edition [$4.99] is a game that seems to set out to do at least two things. First and foremost, it's trying to deliver an atmospheric puzzle-platformer game. It mostly succeeds at that, though it certainly makes a few mistakes that we see fairly often in this sub-genre. Never Alone also seeks to educate the player, at least a little bit, on the folklore and culture of the Inupiat people, and in this aim, it's a considerable success. The game doesn't force any of this on you, but rather focuses on the core gameplay and stunning visuals. It's an enjoyable game on those terms, but if you choose to delve into the extra content, you'll be able to appreciate Never Alone in a new light...

It's no secret that we really loved Downwell [$2.99] here at the TouchArcade lair, with Eli giving it a full 5 stars in his review and many of the writers including it in their Best of 2015 lists. And it's no wonder why since, as Eli put it in his review, the "gameplay is easily among the best arcade action platformers I've played on iOS, potentially ever." In other words, we really like the game. So, I was excited to hear that Downwell's developer, Ojiro Fumoto, gave a GDC talk describing how he developed the game's mechanics and how he went from discovering a fun "gimmick" to designing the entire game around it by trying to maximize its use in gameplay...

As far back as August 2015 we caught our first look at auto runner/platformer hybrid The Amazing Bernard [$3.99], which caught our eye with its interesting take on the genre with innovative mechanics such as being able to create platforms and springs using the touch screen to keep your adventurer progressing over numerous different worlds, environments and even to fight off giant enemy crabs. Unfortunately, its initial release of late 2015 was pushed back to February 2016, and when this later due date was missed, the future of this creative platformer was up in the air. Thankfully this protracted release saga has come to an end as tonight The Amazing Bernard has launched on the App Store, coupled with a launch trailer with a rather inspired music choice which sums up the quirky feel of the game:..

'Leap Day' Review - Jump for Joy

'Leap Day' Review - Jump for Joy

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May 26th, 2016 12:00 PM EDT by Chris Carter in 4.5 stars, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Platform, Reviews, Universal
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I always seem to gravitate towards Nitrome's games. I don't know what it is, but I always pick up their latest game not knowing that it's actually them. And there's a common theme after all these experiences -- I usually come out enjoying myself. With a neat new gimmick, now I can add Leap Day [Free] to that list...

I have to admit that ever since the latest generation Apple TV launched last fall with a true App Store and a bazillion games, I haven't really played many games on it since that initial week or so of checking things out. It's not that I don't enjoy playing games on the big TV in my living room, it's more a problem of already having more awesome games than I can handle on my iPhone and not really having any additional time in the day to plunk down on the couch and get my Apple TV on. This is probably why I didn't notice that late last week one of my all-time favorite iOS games The Incident launched on the Apple TV with an awesome new local multiplayer mode...

Goo Saga [$1.99] is a fun platformer for those who would be intrigued by a bit of physics fluidity in their games. It's perhaps a bit loose-playing, but fun. You control a sentient ball of goo that has to find the scientist that created them, and you do so by using your gooey abilities to their full potential. You can jump and slam on enemies to defeat them. As well, you can inflate and deflate, with inflation giving you a more solid body and faster speed, at the expense of some control. Additionally, you can deflate, which is slower, but allows you to squeeze through tight corners. Platforming and enemy-bopping is a huge part of the experience, but boss fights and vehicle-based levels will throw the occasional wrench in the proceedings...

It's pretty hard to believe that it's been more than 4 years since developer Touch Foo released their Metroidvania-style action platformer Swordigo [Free] to the App Store, but in the crazy world of mobile gaming time flies right before your eyes. While Swordigo has lived a long and happy life as a paid game and seen several freebie sales during that time, its latest update marks a permanent change and strategy for this plucky little platformer. It's now permanently free to play and supported with ads as well as a couple of new in-app purchase items. ..

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