Category Archives: Simulation

Oh Game Dev Story [$4.99]. I have such a soft spot for you in my heart. Way back in October of 2010, I was still fairly new here at TouchArcade and Game Dev Story had just released, but was on absolutely nobody's radar at the time. It's not really hard to see why. It had an ugly interface and less than stellar graphics, and on the surface looked like someone had just slapped some old PC game onto an iPhone without much thought put into it. In fact, that's basically what Game Dev Story on iOS was! Anyway, as a lover of pixel graphics and wanting to give the game a fair chance, I downloaded it and gave it a spin. ..

I've been spending a lot of time with TinyCo's Marvel Avengers Academy [Free] recently. What can I say? I have a documented weakness for Marvel fan-service, and this app really packs it in nicely. Now, there's not a whole lot of playing to be done here, since at its heart it's more or less a superhero aquarium, but I have found a few tips to help things move along a little quicker for those of us who want to enjoy the game for free. Some of these are obvious to anyone who has messed around with a game like this before, but for the sake of anyone who hasn't, I'm going to include basic advice along with the rest. Excelsior!..




Last November Marvel and TinyCo announced a collaboration to create a new kind of superhero game, one where you created and ran a superhero academy where you would train some of the most beloved Marvel superheroes during their more adolescent years. We even got a humorous look at some young Marvel heroes on school ID picture day. Well today is the day that that game, Marvel Avengers Academy [Free], is finally available...

Many 20th century governments have risen and fallen on the power of the word. While sudden explosions of dissent have marked the often-televised end of regimes like Romania's Ceouseskou in 1989, it was the power of the official or underground press that often initially held these governments in power and fomented the dissent that led to their downfall. And these words in official propaganda or unofficial, subversive propaganda (because any information with an angle is, technically, a form of propaganda) caused suffering and death and ruined millions of lives. That's why when I started playing The Westport Independent [$4.99], a "censorship simulator" according to the App Store description, I was expecting my words to cost many lives, my decisions to matter both in terms of gameplay but also in terms of making me care about the lives lost, even the imaginary ones...

To be frank, I always expected the semi-frequent requests I'd heard for a Harvest Moon iOS game to turn out to be a monkey's paw wish. I figured we would see the series on iOS sooner or later, especially after the Harvest Moon name was disassociated from the actual series, but I was expecting it to be a free-to-play game laden with IAPs. Harvest Moon: Seeds Of Memories [$9.99] is likely not what fans of the series would ideally want, but it is a fully premium title without a stitch of IAP to be found in it, and it retains enough of the appeal of the series that it will likely satisfy would-be farmers, if not excite them...

The App Store is pretty much overflowing with games that are trying to capitalize on your nostalgia. It seems like many developers hope that aping familiar art styles and systems will elevate their otherwise amateurish endeavors. There is nothing wrong with making a love letter to a series you enjoyed growing up, don’t get me wrong, but it’s becoming a tired gimmick. Then, a few cool cats from Russia follow the same principle of nostalgia, except like Ivan Drago from Rocky IV, it’s veins are coursing with steroids instead of blood, and you get a game so jam packed with references and tropes that you can’t help but smile. Until the grind kicks in that is. This is Punch Club [$4.99]...

'Crashlands' Review - Holy Wompit, This Is Outstanding

This might sound odd, but I hadn't been paying much attention to Crashlands [$4.99]. I had read the inspiring story behind its genesis, and I knew it was some sort of crafting game. I knew the developer, Butterscotch Shenanigans, has always turned out quality games. But because I had initially pegged it as being something outside of my usual interests, my eye was off the ball. I'm glad for that, because it allowed me to approach this game without too many preconceptions or any sort of hype build-up. If anything, I wasn't sure if I'd like it as much as another reviewer might, since I rarely get deeply into games built around crafting mechanics. Crashlands had to win me over, in other words, and my biggest surprise is how fully it did so...

During E3 in June of last year, Natsume Inc. announced Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories [$9.99], a new entry in the long-running farming/RPG series and the first "true" Harvest Moon game to land on iOS, as the previous mobile game bearing the Harvest Moon name was a puzzle game. Great news, right? Well, maybe. As many know, the Harvest Moon franchise is a convoluted one, and later entries in the series haven't quite captured the magic that the original SNES Harvest Moon did back in the mid-90s. So fans of the series were understandably cautiously optimistic when it came to Harvest Moon: Seeds of Memories, but as of today they can find out for themselves as the game has officially launched on the App Store. Also, even though it would make TOTAL sense for this type of game to be free to play'd out the wazoo, Seeds of Memories is actually a fully paid game with zero IAP. Check out the official trailer...

Off-beat simulation game developer Kairosoft has slowed down their iOS releases considerably in the last couple of years. That was probably a wise move, given how many elements each of their games tends to share with the rest. With new games from the developer coming only a few times a year now, it's easier to appreciate each one of them on their own merits, and it hasn't hurt that their recent releases have demonstrated an effort to break out of the reskinning that categorizes most of their work. The Ramen Sensei [$4.99], their latest iOS release, isn't as innovative as it could be, but its tight focus on its unusual subject matter helps it stand out a little. That said, unless you're really into the subject of ramen, this game is still essentially preaching to the Kairosoft choir...

Based on a novel by Russian author Dmitry Glukhovsky, Metro 2033 has quickly become the video gaming world's third-favorite post-nuclear-apocalypse setting, give or take a rank or two. Set in a world where a nuclear war forced Moscow's survivors to live in the underground subway stations that sprawl out under the city, it's a setting ripe with possibilities for games. Ukrainian developer 4A games apparently felt it would make a good first-person shooter, and they proved themselves right in 2010 with the release of Metro 2033 on Xbox 360 and Windows PCs. That game was followed by a sequel called Metro: Last Light, and I'm quite sure we'll be seeing more games coming in that particular series. Russian developer DaSuppa and publisher TapStar Interactive seem to have come away from the book with a different kind of game idea, perhaps figuring that the struggle for resources and sprawling map filled with nodes would make a good strategy game. They weren't wrong. Metro 2033: Wars [$3.99] is awfully rough around the edges, but it's at least worth checking out for patient strategy fans who are looking for a lighter bite...

It's the holiday season and the folks at Mojang want to keep their Minecraft: Pocket Edition [$6.99] players warm for the winter by way of the just-released Holiday Skins Pack. As usual the skin pack will set you back a couple of bucks if you want access to all of them, but there's a couple of freebies tucked in there too, which include two very festive holiday sweaters. However, if you're truly hardcore, you're going to want to buy the whole shebang, as that's the only way you'll be able to play as such holiday favorites as Tomte the gnome or the Gingerbread Man Creeper...

'Snowboard Party 2' - Downhill Jam

1080 Snowboarding, guys. I spent more time playing that on the Nintendo 64 than any other snowboarding game to date. It came out around the time Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater debuted, and I was basically obsessed with “extreme sports” in video games. Not only was it one of the best-looking and smoothest N64 games of its day, it was also ridiculous amounts of fun. Unfortunately, I missed out on the sequel (never had a Game Cube) and somehow missed the SSX craze as well. In fact, the only other snowboarding game I can recall being super into since then is the recent Alto’s Adventure [$3.99], which belongs to a completely different genre altogether. It’s something I hadn’t really considered, but when I first started playing Ratrod’s Snowboard Party 2 [$1.99], I finally realized how much I missed carving down the slopes in 3D while pulling off crazy tricks...

Minecraft: Pocket Edition [$6.99] sure has come a long way in the 4 years since its initial release. Some might say there's still a long ways to go before it's up to par with its desktop counterpart, and some might also say it's taken too long to get to where we are today with the mobile version. Those are both very good points, but I still think the teams at Mojang and Microsoft should be commended for the extra attention they've been paying to Minecraft: Pocket Edition throughout 2015. The Pocket Edition team has created a brand new trailer showcasing all those nifty new editions that have made it into the game this year...

'Amazing Loot Grind' Review - Tap to Loot

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December 3rd, 2015 2:00 PM EDT by Chris Carter in 3.5 stars, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Simulation, Universal
Free Buy Now

For a period of one month, Cookie Clicker basically took over my PC. I played it at work, and at home, with two simultaneous instances running at once. The concept of watching numbers go up over time isn't anything new -- it's something PC and old console RPGs have been doing for decades -- but clickers cut out all of the downtime and just let you get to the rewards. It's a fascinating social experiment, but on occasion, it also makes for a fun video game. Amazing Loot Grind [Free] is one such instance, and it's perfect to play for hours or seconds at a time...

One of my daily go-to games, True Skate [$1.99] from developer True Axis, continues to add new content and features more than 3 years after its original release. First up on the new content side of things is the "Mondo Ramp" which is a massive ramp structure not totally dissimilar to the MegaRamp used by Danny Way to launch over the Great Wall of China a decade ago and has made its way into regular contests and skateparks in the years since. If you aren't familiar, it's a massive roll-in ramp that leads to two separate launch ramps–one further out than the other for two different length gaps. From those gaps you'll land in another massive roll-in ramp that leads up to an even more massive quarter-pipe. Oh and there's a rail in between the two launch ramps because why not!? Here's a bunch of screens and a quick clip of the new Mondo Ramp...

Wizards and Wagons[$4.99] is out now from Touch Dimensions and it is one of the more active and engaging item shop sim games I have played. Known for more traditional strategy games, Touch Dimensions is stretching their dev skills to reach into the sim genre. Rather than sitting in town and waiting for customers to come to you, W&W mobilizes the store and puts you in the drivers seat. As last week's Touch Arcade Game of the Week, I was not surprised to find dynamic gameplay and an addictive quality that has put some extra rings under my eyes for the last several days from lack of sleep. ..

About a week and a half ago 11 Bit Studios' somber strategy survival game about war from a civilian perspective, This War of Mine [$14.99], received an update that added Universal iPhone support. Finally, millions of iPhone owners would get to experience one of the best game's to arrive on iOS this year. Except for one thing… a show-stopping bug crept into that update. 11 Bit had not choice but to take the game down and get things fixed up, which is what they did. As of yesterday This War of Mine is back in working order and back on the App Store, and as a special bonus it's even on sale for $6.99...

One of the games I've been looking forward to is Wizards and Wagons [$4.99] from Touch Dimensions, so I was worried when it didn't show up in time for our weekly Out Now post. Turns out it was just running late! As the story goes, you're the hero who vanquishes the Demon Lord and returns peace to your land. You're a bonafide hero, and you enjoy all the spoils that go along with that. But, your fame and fortune don't last forever, and before you know it you're penniless and living on the streets. That's no way for a hero to live! So you snag yourself a wagon and try to reinvent your career as a traveling salesman...

11 bit Studios' somber look at war from the civilians' perspective This War of Mine [$14.99] launched on desktop in November of last year to critical acclaim, and in July of this year it was ported to iOS and Android tablets. The somewhat point-and-click style of the gameplay in This War of Mine felt completely at home on the touchscreen, but as is the case with most games that release as iPad-only, iPhone owners were miffed to be missing out on the experience. Well, miff no more, iPhone owners! This War of Mine was just updated with Universal iPhone support...

You might not have heard of Neko Atsume [Free], but it's a game that's gotten kind of a cult following despite not being available in English until now. Released in Japan by Hit-Point, a studio responsible for some of the many Kemco RPGs, this is a game about collecting and raising a bunch of cats. Where's the appeal? Well, just take a look at the game:..

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