Category Archives: iPod touch games

In January of 2014 Stoic Studios launched their tactical RPG Banner Saga [$4.99] on PC to much critical acclaim. In October of that year, just shy of two years ago, they launched Banner Saga on the App Store, and it turned out to be a fantastic fit for the mobile platform. The following December, Stoic officially announced what many people had already assumed was coming, a full sequel, and also mentioned their plans to eventually bring that sequel to mobile platforms as they did with the first game. Well, after another well-received launch on desktop this past April and on consoles in July, Banner Saga 2 [$4.99] has finally popped up for purchase in the App Store...

Zombie titles really need to innovate more-so than a lot of other types of games these days. The market is just so saturated that the mere notion of "survival" itself just isn't enough, and there at least needs to be an interesting hook involved beyond the solitary concept of continuing to exist. Skyhill [$2.99] does that, even if the magic doesn't last as long as the developers intended it to...




Just over a month ago, we told you about Zip Zap [$1.99], an upcoming puzzler from Phillip Stollenmayer and his studio Kamibox, maker of the brilliant existential crisis platformer Sometimes You Die [$1.99] as well as clever puzzlers like Okay? [Free] and Squaredance [Free]. Oh, and I can't forget about my favorite silly time wasters like Pancake - The Game [Free] and 1 Meter [Free]. Zip Zap looked to fall into that "clever puzzler" category, as it has you manipulating various Erector Set-like pieces that are joined with hinges in an effort to scoot, hop, or swing them over to an end goal. The whole thing makes a lot more sense if you watch the trailer for Zip Zap...

The sheer number of mobile devices out in the wild coupled with the ease of downloading apps and their tendency to be free means that download milestones can get pretty crazy compared to other platforms. A million or, heck, even half a million units sold on another platform would be a huge success for most studios, but on mobile it's not even a drop in the bucket anymore. Which brings me to the news that FDG's ape-themed auto-runner Banana Kong [Free] has just reached the 100 million downloads mark across all platforms, and to celebrate FDG will be bringing a huge Beach-themed update to the game on iOS this Thursday. Here's a video showcasing the new Beach content...

Marriage is a tricky, tricky act, isn't it? Quite often those joined in holy matrimony don't really fit well together, and even when they do, compromises must abound if there is to be any kind of happiness in their new union. And when the marriage is of two very different people, the challenges are even greater. If you've played Minecraft (either the mobile or the PC version) and any of the Telltale games, then you already know why I started my review of Minecraft: Story Mode [$4.99] with these metaphors. When Telltale told the world that it would apply its narrative-based formula on Minecraft, the game that's now synonymous with sandbox, many gamers wondered whether Telltale could pull it off and whether Minecraft players would bother with a developer that put their beloved open-world game in a narrative straight-jacket, possibly chopping off any parts that refused to obey the narrative techniques that Telltale has used in its other series...

'Ember' Review - Keeping the Old-School RPG Light Burning

When 505 Games and N-Fusion released their old-school inspired RPG Ember [$9.99] last week, there were a few interesting things we noted. First, with a stated longevity of 30+ hours (coupled with no IAP), it’s certainly one of the longest premium RPGs we’ve played in awhile. Second, as a near simultaneous release with the PC version, it’s one of those increasingly rare games where the developer isn’t trying to hide the fact that a mobile version was developed concurrently with the PC version. Both are typically good indicators of a well-made game, and Ember certainly fits the bill. It does an excellent job paying homage to the old-school RPG and its controls make an acceptable transition to touch screen...

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...

'Solitairica' Review - The Solitaire Roguelike Your Grandma Could Enjoy

Solitaire is quite possibly the most popular video game of all time, thanks to the game's inclusion in Windows in particular. Many a bored office worker, student, and grandparent has sunk hours into this classic card game. Now, with games like Card Crawl [$2.99] bringing modern roguelike influence into card games, it seems only fitting that Solitairica [$3.99] should come into existence, bringing something more closely resembling actual solitaire to the solitaire roguelike subgenre. And it promises to steal countless hours of your time, even if you're not necessarily a card game player...

There were a few late arrivals this week, and one of the biggest (both literally and figuratively) is NBA 2K17 [$7.99], which dropped earlier this morning. 2K's basketball offerings seem to be the fan favorites each year over EA's free to play NBA Live Mobile [Free] series, and this year's offering appears to be the most robust basketball offering yet. It features a revamped control scheme and support for physical controllers, and expanded MyCareer mode with an "Off-Day Simulator, more MyPLAYER equipment and attribute options, upgraded badge system, and more", new Historic players, and an expanded EuroLeague with new teams, among other new features...

The sirens are blaring, the news reports are shouting, and one thing is very apparent to you: The nuclear apocalypse is coming, and coming quick. In one minute to be exact. In 60 Seconds! Atomic Adventure [$2.99], which just launched on iOS after arriving on desktop in May of last year, you have one minute to scavenge your house for supplies and to grab members of your family (the ones who you want to survive, anyway) and then drop down into your bomb shelter to tough out this nuclear apocalypse for as long as possible. ..

'Sorcery! 4' Review - The End of an Incredible Journey

It's been over three years since inkle released their adaptation of the first book in the Steve Jackson's Sorcery! series. In a lot of ways, that app redefined what players expected from a mobile version of a gamebook. It would have been a far simpler matter for inkle to do the expected thing and do a straight conversion of the original books. They had the engine for it, and the series is well-regarded enough that it probably would have done fairly well. Instead, the developers decided to make something that a physical book would have a hard time approximating, while at the same time appealing to the fairly large overlap between gamebook readers and tabletop gaming fans. The first game mostly relied on a unique presentation and reworked battle mechanics, but the following two games brought more and more complexity to the table. Sorcery! 3 [$4.99] was so near to a full-on RPG that its roots were hard to spot at times...

When I first played Exploding Kittens on mobile, I was quite happy with the way the physical had turned digital; the subtle additions of animation and sounds here and there really helped bring the game to life, making it even more fun to play than the original. Sushi Go! [$4.99] has followed a similar path in its journey from card to digital with the developer keeping the game's original card art but adding subtle animations that help make the game quite charming and make it feel more like a digital game than a straight port of a card game. Sushi Go! isn't perfect - there's limited interaction with other players (no emotes or anything like that), which detracts from the social aspect of a card game, and the iPad UI doesn't take advantage of the screen as well as it could. Despite these issues, Sushi Go! is a fun, quick card game that might also put a smile on your face every time you play it...

Last month, a new game from Night School Studio and Telltale Games called Mr. Robot:1.51exfiltrati0n.ipa [$2.99] (or simply Exfiltration for sanity's sake) made a big splash when it hit the App Store. Designed as a companion experience to the first season of the award-winning Mr. Robot TV series, Exfiltration put you in the role of a hapless citizen who happens to find a smartphone on the sidewalk and, upon opening and investigating the phone, gets sucked into a crazy hacker plot. The game plays out entirely through a faux text messaging application interface as you discover new information and plot your way through by communicating with all sorts of people, some who are actual characters from the show. ..

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...

Ten of the Best Graphically Impressive Games to Play on Your New iPhone 7

It's new iPhone day! As my colleague Eli noted earlier, though, we're living in a bit of a weird time in terms of technological advancements of iPhone hardware. In the earlier days, there were more major advancements to each new iPhone that were noticeably impressive, like the graphical leap from the iPhone 3G to the 3GS, or the gorgeous new Retina Display on the iPhone 4. In terms of hardware advancements that you could actually see, things have been incremental since around the iPhone 5S time. The bump up in screen sizes made things pretty interesting when the iPhone 6 models arrived, but last year and now with the new iPhone 7 there's just nothing drastically different about each new iPhone...

Back in May, developer Rumblecade released a side-scrolling beat 'em up called Rockabilly Beatdown [$0.99] that featured simple button-mashing gameplay and some of the nicest pixel art and animation I'd seen. Despite being a simple game with just a single attack button, there was some hidden depth to Rockabilly Beatdown that slowly unveiled itself the more you played. With the charm and personality of the characters in the game, this was definitely an "endless high-scoring" take on the beat 'em up genre that I could get behind. The biggest problem was that it felt like a one-trick pony and, besides shooting for high scores, there wasn't a ton of meat on the bones in terms of progression and unlocks, things we had issues with in our review. That's something that Rumblecade has attempted to rectify with the first big update for Rockabilly Beatdown...

As we learned last month, retro-inspired racer Horizon Chase [Free] has just reached the one-year anniversary of arriving in the App Store, and to celebrate the team at Aquiris Game Studio has just released a special update adding some great new content to the game. This new content comes in the form of a new Australian Cup with 9 brand new tracks and two new vehicles, one a more modern high-performance sports car and the other more of a classic muscle car. Both are very welcome additions to what I believe is one of the finest racers on mobile, and you can see the new stuff in action in the following trailer...

With summer season in Super Evil Megacorp’s Vainglory [Free] coming to a close, the mobile MOBA has now turned its sights onto autumn with a new season, new hero and new interface improvements. Beyond the move to an autumn Halcyon Fold map, autumn season also brings significant changes to the game’s reward system. A new seasonal chest joins the batch of consistent rewards, with seasonal chests requiring more effort to unlock but can offer much greater rewards, including whole skins. Vainglory is also introducing a new Opal currency which is rare to earn and can be used to eventually unlock old limited edition special skins that were supposedly never to return (however, skins unlocked the opal way will look different than the original LE skins to differentiate)...

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...

Last week, we brought you the trailer for a charming upcoming point-and-click adventure game called Paul Pixel - The Awakening [$1.99], and as promised, the game is now available for purchase on the App Store. Paul Pixel the game follows the adventures of Paul Pixel the character as he wakes up to find that his neighborhood has been quarantined thanks to an alien zombie invasion. Yes, not just aliens, not just zombies, but alien zombies. Yikes! Your job is to escape the quarantine zone and save the entire world in the process. No pressure...

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