Category Archives: Simulation

Microsoft announced earlier this morning that it had acquired Mojang — and Minecraft right along with it — for a cool $2.5 billion. The acquisition is expected to be finalized later this year, and Mojang's three co-founders, including Markus "Notch" Persson, are leaving the company...

'Motorsport Manager' Review - Formula Racing for the Masses

When I sat down to try Motorsport Manager [$4.99], I thought it would be the perfect thing to poke at while listening to a podcast. After all, I wouldn’t be expected to drive the cars; I’d be running the biz and laying out the race strategy. A half-hour in, I realized I hadn’t absorbed a word, because I was so fully engaged in growing my fledgeling racing empire and watching my drivers tear up the track. It’s never overwhelming, nor is it too light to maintain interest. Motorsport Manager finds a nice spot in the complexity spectrum wherein it requires frequent decision-making, without ever inducing paralysis by presenting too many options simultaneously...

'Tiny Tower Vegas' Review - A Freemium Jackpot

NimbleBit has shown success across a variety of free-to-play titles, but Tiny Tower [Free] seems to take the cake as far as popularity is concerned. When Tiny Death Star [Free] came out last year, NimbleBit’s formula saw some nice improvements but overall we were left with mostly a sprite refresh with some heavy handed IAP incorporated on top of the base gameplay. With the launch of Tiny Tower Vegas [Free], NimbeBit has retaken the reigns back from Disney Mobile and has made what I consider to be the true sequel to its tower building title. Suffice to say, the mini-game improvements combined with a return to the more friendlier NimbleBit IAP approach makes for another awesome F2P from the developer...

The latest tower-building sim from the fine folks at Nimbebit is now available worldwide. Tiny Tower Vegas [Free] has been in the works for some time now, though it was only officially announced in late June. Then the game soft-launched in select territories about a month later, and now about a month after that, the game is out in all territories. If you're wondering what Tiny Tower Vegas is all about, well, think back to the original Tiny Tower where you add floors to an ever-growing building, put in a Vegas theme complete with gambling mini-games like poker and slots, and Bob's your uncle...

Do you like the review headline? See, what I did there was take Clash of Clans [Free] and clumsily mixed Star Wars with it in a very on-the-nose way, in hopes that it would provide some entertainment to fans of both. Sorry for the sidetrack there, you came here to read a review of Star Wars: Commander [Free], right? It's the latest in a very long line of Star Wars-themed games that give a popular genre or title a healthy coat of Star Wars paint to see if something magical will happen. To the credit of Lucasarts, this has yielded some strong results in the past. Star Wars Baldur's Gate was pretty cool, Star Wars Wing Commander was amazing, Star Wars Battlefield 1942 was really fun, and even Star Wars Doom was pretty good for its time. Of course, there was also Star Wars Fighting Game and Star Wars Twisted Metal, so clearly the pendulum swings both ways here...

Ancient Battle: Hannibal[$1.99] is the latest in the long line of historical battle sim games that Hunted Cow has made for iOS. Between Ancient Battle, Tank Battle: 1944[$0.99] , and Civil War: 1863[$1.99] and the franchises they comprise , they have created nine games across their three series since March of 2012. You might ask how this is possible and I think I have the secret to their prolific abilities. These games are almost direct map packs of the same base game. Now sure, new technology has been added like the ability to zoom. Graphical updates and new unique units(elephants are listed as unique, but they have been in other Ancient Battle games) get added with each title, but I can't shake the similarity...

The last major competition for the Street League 2014 season is this Sunday, the Super Crown Championship, and that means that the official game of the league True Skate [$1.99] has gotten a new downloadable course and is on a freebie promotion for the next week. The new course is the Super Crown course from last year's SLS Championship, and like the last two SLS courses that were added to the game it's a fun level filled with interesting objects to skate and there's a neat feeling about being able to skate something you've seen in real life before (or on TV, at least). Also like the previous DLC courses, the 2013 Super Crown course will run you 99¢ to download...

If you're a big Star Trek fan then this should interest you: YesGnome's simulation game based on the iconic series, Star Trek Trexels [Free], has added brand new content based on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and to celebrate they've dropped the price of the game to free for the first time since releasing last December. I have to admit that when Star Trek Trexels first came out, I became pretty obsessed with it. The game has a heavy Tiny Tower vibe as you slowly build out your own Starship Enterprise with various types of rooms and put together a crew to run it all. As you explore the galaxy, you'll embark on missions of diplomacy, scientific discovery, and of course combat. It's certainly not the deepest experience in the world, but it's oddly compelling and does great Star Trek fan service...

Back in May of this year, developer Yakuto released their first iOS game called Table Tennis Touch [$3.99]. It was a table tennis game, obviously, that featured incredible graphics along with gameplay that straddled the line between simulation and arcade. Yakuto totally nailed it with Table Tennis Touch, as it was a blast to play, had a lot of content and was very challenging. The game initially sold for four dollars and offered completely optional "Boosts" as in-app purchase items which would allow you to hit harder and add more spin to your shots...

It's an unholy meeting of free to play titans as the latest update to EA's The Simpsons: Tapped Out [Free] adds a very Clash of Clans-y new multiplayer feature to the game. You're now able to build up an army of troops and raid your neighbors' cities, but you'll also have to keep your own guard up as they can do the same to you. As always, The Simpsons: Tapped Out isn't shy in making fun of itself, as the tagline for this latest update is "Build! Raid! Defend! Tap!" Yes! Tapping rules!..

I’m a big fan of the Kairosoft-esque simulator so when I heard that a 3D simulation title made in similar fashion and taking place in the music industry was in the works, I was a bit a intrigued. Alas, while TourStar [Free] succeeds in conjuring up some of the basic formula elements that make such games its incredibly basic approach leaves a bit to be desired. Even more unfortunate, the few facets that differentiate it from other games (namely the ability to purchase contest entries for actual concert tickets with in-game currency) don’t seem to be ready for primetime, limiting the actual appeal it may have for curious gamers...

If you're looking to fill out your back catalog of Kairosoft games, or have just put the brakes on buying new ones at full price, two of their semi-recent releases just dropped in price. Cafeteria Nipponica [$4.99] is down to $0.99 from $3.99 for the first time this year. Similarly, Ninja Village [$4.99] is on sale for the first time, dropping from $4.99 to $1.99...

I don't think I'm alone in feeling a bit disappointed by the way Kairosoft's been spinning their wheels with most of their releases. It's not that the games aren't fun individually, it's just that they provide such similar experiences that it's hard to get all that interested in another one if you've already played more than a few. So it was with a slightly weary sigh that I downloaded their latest game, Kairobotica [$4.99], expecting another Pocket Harvest [$4.99] -level rehash and little more. Much to my surprise, this is Kairosoft's most innovative new game in quite some time. That might sound like faint praise, but with the change-up in mechanics, the developer's strengths shine through brighter than they have in a while. The result is a game that may not please everyone, but should at least be a welcome sight to exhausted fans of any of the developer's prior games...

Oh hey, here's a pleasant surprise on a Tuesday morning: the latest Kairosoft game has just hit the App Store worldwide: Kairobotica [$4.99]. Yes, this is another simulation game from the company that are masters of the simulation genre, that they became known for with Game Dev Story [$4.99]. And this one? Well, they're going meta by making it about their company mascot, the Kairobot...

At this time last month, True Skate [$1.99] had just received an update adding in a course from the 2013 Street League Skateboarding stop in Kansas City and dropped its price to free to celebrate the Street League event occurring that weekend in Chicago. Well, Street League is heading to LA this weekend for the second stop on their 2014 tour, and that means that today we have another new park and another price drop for True Skate. The new park is based on the 2013 Street League Portland course, and here's a couple of screens to give you an idea of what it looks like...

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