Category Archives: iPod touch games

'Disney Crossy Road' Review - Mickey Can't Beat a Train

If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Such is the philosophy that Disney Crossy Road [Free] abides by. It pretty much lives up to its title, in that it's Crossy Road [Free] but with Disney characters and themes. And it is a Disney geek's dream. It would have been easy to just throw Disney characters into the classic Crossy Road level and call it a day, but it's quite clear that Disney and Hipster Whale wouldn't just do that. They threw in over a hundred characters at launch, with themes that don't just change the graphics, but add little tweaks to the gameplay. And they added cool little notes that make this something every Disney fan needs to play. Plus, Crossy Road is still great...

In January of this year I was pleased to see Sega release an update for Sonic 4 Episode 2 [$2.99] that addressed some iOS compatibility issues which had rendered the game unplayable. Sure the game was broken for about 2.5 years before the fix arrived, but I was still glad to see it arrive at all and, perhaps feeling a bit too optimistic, I also said "Although it's never been broken by iOS, I sure wouldn't mind Sonic The Hedgehog 4 Episode 1 [$2.99] getting a little update love with some widescreen action." Well hey, guess what? Sega has done just that with an update released just this morning. Not only is the game properly widescreen now, but the art itself has been cleaned up for modern iOS device resolutions. Here's a bunch of comparison shots from before and after today's update, click on any of them to enlarge...




Monkey Swingers [Free] is a game that has some immediate appeal, but it doesn't take long for it start pushing you away. Not only is the game quite tough, it also demands a fair bit of concentration, and a good run usually lasts longer than the excitement does. If you intend on getting your little monkey up into space and beyond, you need to demonstrate a high level of skill, but also set aside a reasonably big chunk of time to dedicate to the task. I like the idea behind the game well enough, and it's certainly got a nice system of upgrades and fun cosmetic items to unlock, but it just doesn't come together as well as I'd hope...

We've been following the progress of Power Hover's [$3.99] forthcoming update for the past few months as developer Oddrok has been posting bits and pieces of the update in our forums. Now it's all coming full circle as that update is finished and set to arrive next Thursday, April 7th. The update will include new environments to hover around in, an entire new chapter with 6 new levels and 1 new endless boss level, and new characters to unlock and play as. All of this new goodness can be seen in this brand new trailer...

Sure, a while back I said I was done with idle clickers. But I'm done with them in the same way I'm done with match-3 games, for the most part: I'll play the occasional one because I still enjoy the core idea, but I've just played too many of them to want to keep diving back in on a regular basis. Doomsday Clicker [Free] from PikPok is my occasional exception to clickers, particularly as I enjoyed the concept, and the typical PikPok production values go a long way here. But it's still a clicker, and it can only really go so far at this point. Plus, it's one of this new generation of non-clicker clickers, and I'm not sure I enjoy that development...

Dragon Hills [$1.99] busted onto the scene just about a year ago, and took the whole "diving in and out of the ground eating people and destroying things" gameplay first popularized by Death Worm [$2.99 / Free] and gave it the lovely style and personality that developer Rebel Twins is known for. While the game was quite enjoyable upon release, it never received any new content afterwards, which is a surefire way to be forgotten about in the tough App Store environment. Well, upon its one year anniversary, Rebel Twins has prepared a hefty update for Dragon Hills which will add new playable dragons called "King of Fire" and "Worminator", a new Pirate-themed environment, new enemies, and more. Check out the trailer for the new update...

We've been following the progress of Extreme Gear ever since spotting it for the first time back in late January, but today is the day that Zero Games' Extreme Gear: Demolition Arena [Free] has finally arrived in the App Store. If you haven't been following along, Extreme Gear is pretty much an homage to old-school Destruction Derby from the PS1 days, something I've been hoping for on iOS for a long time. I've spent a good chunk of my day with Extreme Gear, and while it's certainly rough around the edges and has plenty of room for improvement, the bottom line is that smashing into other cars is fun, and Extreme Gear does a great job at letting you do just that. ..

When Minecraft: Story Mode [$4.99] launched in October of last year, we were pretty impressed with how quickly Telltale was releasing new episodes compared to their previous episodic games. In just a couple of months 4 episodes were released with the last episode arriving just prior to Christmas, and it's those 4 episodes that are covered in our ever-evolving review of Minecraft: Story Mode. Then last week we learned that a fifth episode was on its way, and shockingly that there were three more episodes planned to arrive after it. It looks like Minecraft: Story Mode might just continue to evolve with new story arcs and episode sets for a long time, rather than having any separate sequels, and to that I say "Cool!" Today Episode 5 titled "Order Up!" is now available for download, and is designed to bridge the gap between Episode 4, which concluded the Wither Storm story arc, and the forthcoming Episodes 6, 7, and 8. Here's Episode 5's trailer...

Some of my favorite mobile games are ones that can be played with one hand in quick sessions. After all, if you have your phone always with you, then why not fill any empty gaps by playing a game? I love deeper experiences as well, but the ones I keep coming back to are the games that I can play for short bursts. It's what makes Clash Royale [Free] so compelling and replayable, and why I've sunk a lot more time in something like Boom Dots [Free] than you'd probably expect from such a simple game. So is the case with Super Arc Light [$0.99]. It's a minimalist high-score shooter that takes definite cues from Super Hexagon [$2.99]. It's a game I raise plenty of issues with, but I can't complain about it too much, since it scratches my one-handed pick-up-and-play itch quite well...

If you've been enjoying your virtual adventures in Aralon: Forge and Flame [$4.99] but feel like you'd enjoy it even more if you could play as a Paladin class, well, today's update is for you. The oft-requested Paladin class has been added to the game, along with a brand new dungeon called The Ruins of Valemar. In addition to the new class and new dungeon, an in-app store has been added to Aralon: Forge and Flame so if you want to spend some real-life money to fast-track your virtual character's progression, then now you have that option. ..

Gamevil's third-person multiplayer shooter Afterpulse [Free] launched worldwide last October following a short soft-launch period. It offered great visuals, but more importantly it streamlined the shooter experience to create something that felt satisfying but still highly playable on mobile touchscreen devices. We enjoyed it a lot in our original review, and although I was a bit late to the party, I also got hooked on Afterpulse late last year and it's become one of my very favorite games. The shooting is fun, the matchmaking works great, and the RPG-ish character and weapon leveling keeps me coming back time and time again. ..

The Sketch Nation series goes way, way back and in fact it was just about 6 years ago on the dot that we sat down to check out the original Sketch Nation at GDC 2010. The series has evolved a lot in the years since, and the most recent version of the game is called Sketch Nation Create [Free] and it expands on the original concept of letting you make your own shoot 'em up game and now allows you to make a variety of game types with a shocking amount of options and depth. It's surprisingly user-friendly and still centers around the idea that you can simply draw your own game assets right there on the touchscreen. Check out this overview of the latest incarnation of Sketch Nation Create...

In September of last year, Deed - The Game [Free] officially launched in the App Store, but it wasn't until today at GDC that I'd even heard of it. There are a couple reasons for that, I think. For one, it's based on a physical board game named simply Sustainable Business that's popular in Brazil but not so much elsewhere. Second, Deed was somewhat positioned as an educational game, which is accurate as it's a simulation of global trading but that's sort of dismissive of the actual fun and strategy contained within. Well, it turns out that that initial launch of Deed was sort of a learning experience anyway, and so developer Sinergia Studios made the tweaks and fixes that the game needed based on feedback while it was live in the time since its launch, and in fact ended up even completely revamping the art style for the "real" launch of the game when a big version 2.0 update hit last month. ..

Nexon's Legacy Quest [Free] was originally announced more than a year ago, in February 2015, and just a week or so after that it ended up being one of my favorite games that I saw at GDC that year. The game had been in soft-launch since last September, and has undergone numerous changes and tweaks since leading up to its worldwide release just last night. So what is Legacy Quest? The simple description is it's Diablo with a Minecraft-y voxel art style. You'll create a team of fighters and loot dungeons by hacking and slashing away at tons of enemies in a variety of shapes and sizes. This is an old trailer and I think the release version of Legacy Quest looks a lot better, but it gives you a brief idea of what you're in for gameplay-wise...

Oh Game Dev Story [$0.99]. 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. ..

One of the fun things about following a specific platform over a number of years is watching how things progress. Developers and series will pop up, and if they hang around, you can see what they do to build on what they did before to try to make an even better game. Sometimes it works out, and sometimes it doesn't. In the case of developer TouchMint and its Adventure To Fate series of turn-based RPGs, it's happily been the former. When the first game launched almost two years ago, it was a fun, somewhat rough game that got better with a couple of updates. Last year, a free-to-play follow-up came out, focusing almost entirely on the combat system and character development mechanics. That game, too, got some really nice updates that made the game better. I don't know what the update plans look like for Adventure To Fate: Quest To The Future [$3.99] looks like, but even in its present state, it shows the experience TouchMint has gathered in its own personal quest for glory...

Are you a real gamer? Are you a real hardcore gamer? Do you like games that will punish you and leave you begging for mercy? Congratulations, Lost Socks: Naughty Brothers [$0.99] is the game for you. This auto-run-and-gun game boasts fantastic art, well-done gameplay, and tough difficulty. Perhaps too tough for most: its progression gating that is so punishing that you'll beg to pay money to the developers to take shortcuts. And the game will look down at you and whisper "No."..

The Swords [$2.99] is an interesting little experience because it's this mixture of gorgeous art and animation combined with gameplay that's fun but sometimes frustrating. The story that sets up The Swords is that a master of swords is telling a story about his grandmaster, an expert swordsman proficient in many different types of swords, and the very idea of them. Microgames wind up comprising the gmaeplay here, as you perform sorts of different actions through swipes and taps depending on the section of the game you're in, so that you can progress. You'll be swiping to deflect enemy swords, utilizing a spinning sword to deflect enemy blows, controlling the sway of a tree in the wind, and more. You kind of get to do anything and everything sword-related here...

Peter Panic [Free] is Wario Ware mixed with a musical, and only halfway complete. Seriously, the game borrows its structure and goofiness from Wario Ware almost exactly. You play through levels all with a specific theme, trying to complete a short micro-game to get a point and advance further to a boss level. Beat that, then you complete the level and go on to the next one. The games use the touchscreen in different ways, and there are some key variations, but generally? This is Wario Ware but on iOS as a musical – and not finished yet...

For as far back as last June when Apple released the private beta of iOS 9 during WWDC, Game Center has been plagued with issues. For some reason the service just simply stops working out of the blue. I didn't personally become affected with the Game Center bug until sometime last fall, after the official release of iOS 9. Since then, various versions of rebooting, signing out of the App Store, turning on Airplane mode, or voodoo dancing have gotten Game Center to work intermittently, but even those crazy methods eventually stopped working and ever since about December Game Center has been as dead as a doornail to me. ..

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