Category Archives: iPod touch games

2016 was a year that happened. Frankly, that's the best thing I have to say about it. But for mobile gaming, it felt like a transformative year. Nintendo finally got their feet wet on the platform. Supercell shook up the world with Clash Royale [Free] – and then we saw as it went through some uncharacteristic growing pains. And while I kind of felt like that 2016 perhaps wasn't quite full of quality games as 2015 was, going through the list of great titles released in 2016 should serve as a reminder that we live in a time of too many games. There are some games excluded from my list solely because I didn't have the time to play them. And I left off a lot of games that I did play that were worthy of mention. Even games that got five stars from me were left off! But I wanted to go by the ten games that were the most memorable and enjoyable experiences. Maybe in a review fashion, some games wind up as 'better', but recapping my year in mobile gaming, these ten games (in order from ten to one) are my ten favorites of 2016...

Last year Nitrome released a very silly and clever puzzler called Silly Sausage in Meat Land [Free] where your goal was to stretch a freakishly flexible dog from point to point all while strategically avoiding various types of hazards on your way to each checkpoint. It was a lot of fun, and we really enjoyed Silly Sausage in Meat Land in our review. Well, the stretchy dog shenanigans were far from over as in September Nitrome announced a sequel, and as of this morning Silly Sausage: Doggy Dessert [Free] is now available. Expect more crazy puzzling as in the first game, but with a truckload more sugary sweets. That's desserts, not deserts, for those keeping score at home...




Just last week those sneaky folks at Noodlecake decided to squeeze one final release in before 2016 closes out when they announced that they'd be publishing a clever new puzzle platformer from Mantisbite Games and releasing it this week just before the iTunes freeze. Well, it slipped past the normal weekly roundup but that game Island Delta [$2.99] is finally now available. Island Delta sees you using a gravity gun not unlike the famous version from Half-Life 2 as you pick up objects, toss them about, and generally use your unique ability to solve various puzzles and work your way through an evil villain's vast facilities...

'Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire' Review - Delicious

One of the great things about classics is that they're readily available. While you'd be hard pressed to find a copy of Master Chu and the Drunkard Hu for the NES, a game almost no one has even heard of (myself included, until my wife showed me hers), you can get Mario 3 on your refrigerator and play Doom 2 inside of a keyboard. Sega is particularly giving with their legacy titles in the mobile arena, as is Square Enix, even if the latter charges an arm and a leg for the privilege. But while those games are timeless to some, new blood needs to come in every so often and keep them in check, even if they aren't particularly unique mechanically. Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire [$1.99] is comprised of a lot of mechanics found in the aforementioned classics, but its presentation of those concepts is effortless...

Nomads going on massive treks across the land with their tribes in tow. A lot of quality entertainment has been mined from that concept, most notably in recent gaming history with The Banner Saga [$9.99]. This time, Choice of Games is taking a crack at it with Saga of the North Wind [$4.99], a relatively lengthy adventure gamebook from writer Tom Knights. It's a good idea for a game like this, and the quality of the prose here is strong, but a few elements keep it from being all that it could have been. If you've got an interest in the topic matter, though, you'll probably find something to like here...

For the past year and a half or so, Lucas Wilde has been constructing what he hoped would be the ultimate first-person shooter for mobile devices, and after soft-launching on Android quite some time ago and again on iOS just last month, Bullet Force [Free] is now officially available. The first-person shooter on touchscreens has been a tough nut to crack. Many have tried and failed, and a few have been pretty darn good, but there hasn't been one that truly captures the fun of shooters AND plays well on a touchscreen since, in my opinion, Ngmoco's Eliminate Pro way back in 2009. Lord how I miss that game. Anyway, after the iOS soft launch of Bullet Force last month I took the plunge, and for the first time since those days back in 2009 and 2010, I got that same feeling of fun from playing a first-person shooter on my phone. ..

'Don't Grind' Review - Tally Me Banana

I don't know about you, but I always get unnerved at the death of tiny cute anthropomorphic things. Most people can rationalize "that's a banana getting grinded up into bits," but when you hear their screams and see blood splattering across the screen, it's a little different. Thankfully the point of Don't Grind [Free] is to save these little creatures, but as most endless games prove, death is inevitable. Maybe that's why it makes me so uncomfortable...

Back in 2012, Danish developer Press Play was acquired by Microsoft and used to create exclusive games for Microsoft's fledgling Windows Phone platform. One of those games was called Tentacles, and it was about controlling a little blob creature by touching the screen to grab onto objects and pull through the level using its set of 4 wiggly tentacles. It was a really unique game that worked wonderfully on a touchscreen, and when it was apparent that its exclusivity wasn't exactly bringing in the customers to the Windows Phone platform, Microsoft opted to bring the game to iOS in October of 2012 with the title Tentacles: Enter the Dolphin [$2.99]. It was an interesting and entertaining game that we enjoyed in our original review...

While Nintendo’s Super Mario Run is intrinsically a Mario platformer, there are obviously a few things that differentiate it from other titles in the series. In fact, the auto-run nature of the game essentially means that veterans of the platform need to remaster the controls to a certain extent. This is especially important if you plan on beating other opponents in the game’s Toad Rally mode. Toad Rally mode is a challenge mode that requires rally tickets and is a highly competitive mode where you race against a person’s avatar to get the highest score, which is a combination of coins collected and flashy moves in order to impress the toads watching. Obviously, such a mode requires great mastery of the controls to win, so check out the following tips and tricks in order to be the ultimate runner...

Nintendo's 'Super Mario Run' is Now Available!

It's been a long wait since Nintendo officially announced Mario coming to the iPhone in early September, and even longer if you consider that people have been clamoring for Nintendo to bring games to mobile even since the arrival of the iPhone a decade ago, but the time is finally here that Super Mario Run [Free] has arrived in the App Store. Well, arrived in "GET" form rather than the "NOTIFY" form it's been in since September, at least. As most everyone knows by now, Super Mario Run isn't exactly the Mario you know and love from the past three decades. This Mario runs, vaults over enemies, and does every other action besides jumping on his own, leaving you to focus all your attention on the jumping by simply tapping on the screen. It'll be interesting to see if Miyamoto and Co. have still provided a rewarding, skill-based Mario game despite the extreme distillation of its hallmark mechanics. ..

There's a bit of lingo in Japanese gaming that doesn't have a great equivalent in English. The term is baka-ge (literally "stupid game"), and it refers to games that are intentionally ridiculous or absurd. Think of something like Goat Simulator [$1.99], and you'll be well on your way to understanding what a baka-ge is. The term doesn't make much of a judgment as to whether the game is bad or good, mind you, but the very presence of this kind of spirit is enough to draw a certain type of gamer. My Horse Prince [Free] is an amazing bit of baka-ge, a tapper that seems to find endless joy in warping its equine protagonist's body in nonsensical ways, sending up visual novel tropes, and making terrible dad-jokes. I suspect the majority of people who bring themselves to try it will find it too stupid to tolerate. For some of you out there, however, this might be one of the most memorable games of this year...

Developer Quantum Sheep has earned a strong following over the years in the TouchArcade forums thanks to a combination of making great games, his sensible love of tea, and being a friendly, fluffy sheep. While the developer has been working hard on a few projects for iOS, it's been a little while since its last release on mobile. But that doesn't mean there's nothing Sheep-related for you to put in your own stocking, friends. Quantum Sheep has put together and released a bundle containing all three Air Supply games for the low price of $1.99. Since Air Supply - SOS [$1.99] usually sells for $1.99 on its own, it's like you're getting the other two for free!..

To be honest, I thought the day would never come when we would play Party Hard on mobile. The game had been announced for mobile a long time ago, but its PC release came and went with nary a mention of the mobile version. The game's publisher tinyBuild, is typically very open about what they're working on, so them being hesitant to show off what would become Party Hard Go [$6.99] was certainly odd. I wondered if the game even existed at some point. Like, I doubted that tinyBuild would be oddly skittish on this one's existence when they're so open with everything else, but it did seem odd. Well, after some work adapting the game and giving it a Go in the name, their murder simulator is finally here. And, well, it's a unique game, but one that has a lot of oddities to it...

Apart from being a really creative, awesome RPG, the biggest thing that struck me about the original Siralim [Free] was just how frequently and magnificently it was updated. Everything from balance adjustments to new graphics to entirely new systems was added to the game after its release, and for quite some time, you could be confident that there would always be something new when you fired up Siralim. The sequel, Siralim 2 [$4.99], hasn't seen quite as frantic a schedule when it comes to updates. It appears that the developer is going for bigger, less frequent updates instead, which is fine by me. The latest one has just hit and it's a whopper...

The Quest [$7.99] is the mobile RPG gift that just keeps on giving, and 2016 has been a particularly great year for its fans. We started off the year with the first new expansion in quite some time, the Celtic-flavored Cursed Stone [$2.99]. All the iPad owners who had been pining for a native version of The Quest got their wish in late July with the release of The Quest HD [$7.99], which developers Redshift kindly made available as a universal app scant weeks later. In mid-September, an HD version of The Quest's first expansion, Islands of Ice and Fire [$3.99], was released. Late October saw the long-awaited release of an Android version of The Quest, and it looks like we're closing out the year with yet another expansion to the original version of The Quest from Zarista Games...

Gameloft’s Disney Magic Kingdoms [Free] has seen a steady stream of content updates, with the most recent one being the (pretty awesome) Halloween Nightmare Before Christmas event. Now, the freemium kingdom-builder is back at it again with a new seasonal event based on one of their most popular IPs...

As promised last month, developer Firi Games have released a huge version 2.0 update to their fantastic vertical shooter Phoenix II [Free]. The biggest change in this update is a new League system which will move players up and down in various levels of leagues based on how they perform in each day's mission. So, if you found the game pretty difficult you'll likely stick around in the lower leagues and get daily missions that are a bit easier. If you're quite proficient at the game, you'll rise up the league ranks and get daily missions that are increasingly harder. It's a smart system that should hopefully cater to a wider level of gamers than the original release...

While the music/rhythm genre has become somewhat stagnant on consoles, it’s been alive and well on mobile with ports of classics along with new twists to enjoy. Still, it’s been awhile since I’ve enjoyed a tried and true classic take on the rhythm genre. Pianista [Free] is an excellent new title that offers that exact experience with the added benefit of a treasure trove of classical music. In fact, when you combine the well-designed rhythm system with an interesting freemium system, there’s really no reason not to at least check it out...

One game that has been very popular in our community but has flown mostly under the radar since its release in June is The Counter of Death [Free] from developer Curlking. This twitch reaction game has you facing off against an onslaught of foes by countering their attacks which leads to you automatically launching an offense of your own. It's done very simply by either touching the giant upper counter button or lower counter button, and paying close attention to your enemy's motions prior to their strike is key to being successful. For such simple mechanics, The Counter of Death is a surprisingly strategic game, and made even better by its fantastic presentation that mimicked old-school kung-fu movies to a T. ..

Colorful Platformer 'Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire' Hits the App Store

Back in March during GDC, I was fortunate enough to check out a very promising upcoming platformer called Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire. I had never heard of the game before, nor of developer PlayPretend, and they didn't have an appointment to meet with us or anything like that. They had heard we were at GDC and simply tracked us down and we were able to squeeze in an impromptu demo between meetings, and it ended up being one of my favorite games I saw at the conference. I love conferences like GDC precisely for those unexpected moments when some super awesome game just comes out of the woodwork. Anyway, about a month later PlayPretend released two new videos showing off more of Le Parker, but things had been awfully quiet since then. However, just last week the developers popped back up on our forums to announce that Le Parker was under review with Apple, and just a few moments ago Le Parker: Sous Chef Extraordinaire [$1.99] officially went live in the App Store...

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