Category Archives: Sports

Despite Portugal somehow winning the Euros regardless of only winning one game in normal time and against the will of an army of moths, Pixel Cup Soccer 16 [$2.99] still remains a highly enjoyable footbal experience on mobile. In our review last month we loved the tight arcade action that was well suited to a more portable device, however a relative lack of content and some other minor flaws held it back from being a truly definitive iOS experience. That being said, the developers have been extremely active on our forums promising future support for Pixel Cup Soccer 16, and today an update has been released which adds a few cool new features to help satiate any fans like myself who now have the prospect of a month without the beautiful game until the new season starts...

'Super Stickman Golf 3' Review - Another Great Day at the Sticky Links

It's been a few years since Super Stickman Golf 2 [Free] first released, and there's been plenty of time for that game to kind of fade into memories to a certain degree, what with the constant deluge of releases that mobile gamers are beset by. So even huge fans of that game might have forgotten just why it was so much fun. And really, that's what Super Stickman Golf 3 [Free] does best: it advances the franchise with its new spin mechanic, but also shows just how solid the core established by earlier games was. It's just better than ever...




It's no secret that I'm a True Skate [$1.99] addict. It's my daily habit, and thankfully, I've been told it's a lot healthier than smoking. This little skateboarding simulator has come a long, long way since its original release in the fall of 2012, and a constant flow of updates has added in lots of new courses and new features, making it easily the most robust skate simulator on the App Store. This Friday another new True Skate update is coming which introduces a couple of pretty big changes. ..

'Pixel Cup Soccer 16' Review - There's Your Fairytale

It's rather telling that the best soccer titles on handheld devices are the simplest. The reductionist approach of games such as New Star Soccer [Free] - where only a few elements of the sport such as scoring goals are focused on - fits mobile gaming so much better, as instead of trying to port a console experience which simply doesn’t fit on the iPhone, they play to the smartphone’s strengths. Pixel Cup Soccer 16 [$2.99] is another fantastic addition to the growing roster of soccer games, and focuses - for better and for worse - on the simplest arcade elements of the beautiful game to provide an extremely fun footballing experience that is easy to pick up, hard to master and even more difficult to put down...

The cult classic New Star Soccer [Free] has amassed many fans since its initial launch in 2012 - and even won a BAFTA to show for it - although the lack of any substantial updates for over a year has led to many wondering what the future held for this excellent arcade soccer simulator. These questions were answered when this morning out of nowhere New Star Games, in association with French book publisher Hachette, released a spinoff in the series called New Star Soccer G-Story [$3.99], which merges the gameplay of its predecessor with an interactive Choose Your Own Adventure style ebook. The developers released a reveal trailer showing the slick new engine and an array of options you can take to influence your player’s career over the duration of the game:..

The simulation game factory that is Kairosoft continues to crank out new games to the iOS platform in the West, with the latest being Pocket League Story 2 [Free] which has just arrived this morning. It's a sequel to their 2012 fan-favorite release that had you putting together your own soccer team and then training them and making them into the top team in the world. Being a Kairosoft game it wasn't just about the team either, as you had to build a stadium to play in, a training facility for your team to practice at, sell merchandise to fans, and all those other little responsibilities that go along with managing a major sports team...

If there's one genre I almost never get to experience, it's fishing. I have plenty of nostalgia for SEGA's huge line of bass-centric games as well as their amazing arcade machines where you can actually feel the tension in the rod, but in this modern era, I generally don't go out of my way to play a console or mobile fishing game. That changed with Fishing Break [Free], and although it has a rather aggressive monetization strategy, it still hits the spot...

For those who enjoy playing Football Manager Touch 2016 [$19.99 (HD)], the Winter Transfer Window update is always a fun moment in the game's life-cycle. If you aren't aware of how football transfer seasons work, football teams are only allowed to sign players during the summer transfer season and the winter transfer season (unless those players aren't signed to any team). What this means in terms of football games striving for realism is that unless there's a Winter Transfer update, the game's rosters are outdated by the end of January of any given year. So, for those who enjoy their Football Manager games to reflect the footballing reality of the world around them, the Winter Transfer update is a much-needed roster update that brings the game closer to what they would watch on TV...

'Tennis Champs Returns' Review - A New Definition of Love

Sports video games are in a tough spot, in my opinion. They have benefited greatly from hardware advancement over the decades, and are able to offer much more accurate simulations of their real-life counterparts with things like incredible graphics and advanced physics and AI. But along with that sports games have undoubtedly become more complex, and are often difficult to approach with their many button inputs and moves. I also feel that sometimes sports games fail to capture the essence of the sport they're trying to mimic, as even though the action on screen is faithful the their real-life counterparts it often doesn't "feel" like you're actually playing that sport. More like just inputting your button combinations and watching what unfolds...

'Mountain Biker' Review - Pay To Schwinn?

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February 4th, 2016 10:30 AM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in 3.5 stars, Free, Games, Racing, Reviews, Sports, Universal
$1.99 Buy Now

Tiny Wings [$0.99] is an amazing game. Not a terribly controversial statement, but I’ve always found it kind of surprising that more games didn’t take the idea and run with it. Sure, there are lots of games on the App Store that use a similar mechanic (my favorite, by far, is Kumobius’s Time Surfer [$0.99]), but it’s not nearly as many as I’d expect. I mean, think about how many Threes [$2.99], Flappy Bird, and Clash of Clans [Free] clones there are compared to Tiny Wings. Of course, every now and then a TW-like game will still randomly appear, and the latest I’ve seen is Mountain Biker [$1.99] by Escape Velocity...

Jared Bailey (aka No Can Win) is one of my favorite developers on the App Store. I loved Cubed Rally Racer [$0.99], and was near-obsessed with the follow-up, Cubed Rally Redline [Free]. After that, though, he started focusing on much simpler Ketchapp-style games that weren’t really my cup o’ tea. The last game of his (which I reviewed) was called Super Bounce Back [Free], and it seemed to be a step back in the right direction, with a clever concept that was slightly more involved than the “one-button-quick-reaction” style games he’d been putting out after the Cubed Rally series. And fortunately for me (and you, I suppose), his latest effort Rocket Ski Racing [Free] climbs out of that inverted bell curve even further. Simply put, it’s a blast...

Having grown up with a controller in my hand, I've learned quite a few skills by way of video games, ranging from vocabulary enhancements, to motor skills, and even things like geography. One of the more practical things I picked up though is general sports knowledge. In fact, it's where I first learned golf, with my uncle breaking down the specific function of each club, and when to use them.  But the game of golf never really took for me, and to really get into the sport of it, I needed a bit of persuasion, sometimes of the fantastical variety. Enter Kirby's Dream Course on the SNES, with wonderful gimmicks like ball morphing and leaping over pitfalls and other hazards, and I was in. I never thought that 20 years later, I'd be writing about a similar experience on iOS, but here we are with Frank the Dillo [$0.99]...

'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...

'Football Manager Touch 2016' Review - Say Goodbye To Your Free Time, Your Job, and Your Life

What do you look for in a game? Is it brief moments of entertainment? Do you like games that keep you busy while you play them and fade from memory the moment you stop? Then Football Manager Touch 2016 [$19.99 (HD)] is definitely not for you. Why so? Because this is a game about investment, a game that hooks you not with its frantic gameplay (since it's anything but frantic) but by getting you involved and invested in your career. The game makes you feel like an integral part of team your managing; you don't play FMT 2016 only when you're looking at your tablet, you're playing it even late at night in a bar when you're thinking which player would work where, or whether that wonderkid will finally turn up on matchday. This is a game that will literally expand to fill much of your free time, even when you aren't actually anywhere near your tablet...

In September of last year a quirky little snowboarding game called Shred It! [Free] was released by developer Extra Mile Studios. Shred It! had an incredibly charming papercraft art style that gave it a really unique look, and really solid "behind the back runner" style snowboarding gameplay that worked well on the touchscreen. Unfortunately, finicky touch detection and a lack of content caused Shred It! to largely fly under the radar when it released. Extra Mile addressed that by updating the game with greatly improved touchscreen controls, a Checkpoint Challenge mode, and several seasonal content updates for Halloween, Christmas and New Years. Its last update was way back in January, but with winter in full swing and snowboarding being a winter pastime, a new Shred It! update has just landed that rejuvenates this overlooked little gem...

'Football Manager Mobile 2016' Review - Your Phone Couldn't Ask for a Better Sports Manager Game

When I heard a few years ago that Sports Interactive was planning on bringing Football Manager over on iOS, I was filled with reserved anticipation. Anticipation because the thought of a portable Football Manager was the white whale of many gamers (including me) who had spent hours upon hours on the many PC versions of the game, and reservations because I knew they couldn't really port the whole game on mobile unless the developers seriously pared down the experience. The major issue was the PC game's huge database, which would barely fit on the then top-end devices, and the memory requirements. When the first Football Manager Handheld was released, it was met with the expected response: most players were happy the game was on iOS but were disappointed by the lack of many 'essential' features and by the very small database...

There's this one franchise that most European (primarily) gamers use as short for the game that made you break up with a girlfriend, miss your best friend's wedding, fail a few (or more) classes, or forget to eat, and that franchise is Football Manager (yes, I know it wasn't always called that, but that's not important). After releasing Football Manager Mobile 2016 [$8.99], the more streamlined mobile version of the game, Sports Interactive has just dropped Football Manager Touch 2016 [$19.99 (HD)], the big daddy, on the App Store. This is an improved version of last year's Football Manager Classic [$19.99 (HD)] (which got 5 stars from me), and should play even better than last year's game. Football Manager Touch 2016 is pretty much the Football Manager Touch mode from the PC game, which is a streamlined version of the full Football Manager 2016 monster. The iOS and PC version of Football Manager Touch are fully cross-save compatible, which means you can waste all that time on the same career on both iOS and on the PC...

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...

'Evel Knievel' Review - Too Legit To Quit

'Evel Knievel' Review - Too Legit To Quit

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November 10th, 2015 3:30 PM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in $1.99, 4.5 stars, Apple TV, Arcade, Games, Platform, Reviews, Sports, Universal
$1.99 Buy Now

Evel Knievel is undoubtedly one of the more ridiculous pieces of American pop culture. I don’t mean ridiculous in a bad way; just that it seems equal parts silly and awesome that someone could make a career out of jumping a motorcycle over increasingly large numbers of crazy things like buses and sharks. That weirdly fascinating balance of absurdity and danger are on full display in Barnstorm Games’ Evel Knievel [$1.99], to the point where I’m not sure how seriously I should be taking any of it...

'Beat Sports' Review - Weee! Sports on the Apple TV!

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November 9th, 2015 12:00 PM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in $9.99, 4 stars, Apple TV, Games, Music / Rhythm, Reviews, Sports
Free Buy Now

I wasn’t planning on buying the fourth generation Apple TV right away. But then Guitar Hero Live [Free] happened, and I just couldn’t wait. I mean, the game is great on the iPad and iPhone, but obviously it was always meant for the living room. Imagine my disappointment, then, when I finally got Apple’s new streaming box and Guitar Hero Live wasn’t even in the App Store yet. Luckily, though, developer Harmonix (who kicked off the whole plastic instrument trend back in 2005) did have a rhythm game on the store right on launch day. It’s called Beat Sports, and while it’s no Guitar Hero or Rock Band, it’s still a pretty fun little slice of music gaming...

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