Category Archives: $1.99

A few releases back, SEGA added Gunstar Heroes to the SEGA Forever line-up. It's an awesome game, one that put the name of its developer Treasure on the map. Even if it's not ideal when experienced with touch controls, I'm sure many SEGA fans who own iOS devices are glad to have it. At the same time, however, it is a game that was previously released on iOS several years ago. That version of the app had long since been broken by iOS version updates, but the fact remains that Gunstar Heroes isn't exactly new to the platform. Treasure's other great 16-bit games, on the other hand, represent fresh ground for mobile devices. As luck would have it, SEGA has opted to resume their SEGA Forever releases with one of those titles, the imaginative platformer Dynamite Headdy [Free]...

It's been a bit of a rough first year for SEGA Forever, the latest initiative from SEGA to bring their classic games to mobile gamers. The basic idea was a good one: plumb the depths of SEGA's invaluable gaming archives and make the treasures within available for anyone with a smartphone to play for free. Players could pay a relatively small one-time price to remove ads and take advantage of extra features. The bulk of the releases have been drawn from the Genesis console, SEGA's most popular hardware worldwide. Unfortunately, when the service launched, the emulator that SEGA was using for these releases was in pretty poor shape, and it feels like the whole line has been trying to recover ever since...




Developer Jussi Simpanen aka Adventure Islands released Duke Dashington Remastered [Free] back in November of last year, just a handful of days after Apple's latest device the iPhone X hit the market. Given the timing of the release, it's no surprise that the game didn't support the full screen of the iPhone X at the time, but it was still disappointing to iPhone X owners like myself and has only grown more so in the months since. Well! Thankfully Adventure Islands was already on the case, and decided to roll iPhone X screen support into a juicy new content update for Duke Dashington Remastered which has just hit the App Store today. The new content comes in the form of the Crystal Caverns dungeon which offers 30 brand new levels complete with their own new Game Center achievements and Time Trial leaderboard. Here's a brief glimpse of the game running on an iPhone X...

Our weekly new game roundup doesn't happen until tomorrow, but developer Dumb Luck Games launched their new title Retro Highway [Free] at such an odd time (as far as mobile game releases are concerned, anyway) that I wanted to make sure that it didn't slip through the cracks. You might recall I posted about Retro Highway earlier this month, as I'm a huge OutRun fan from the time I was little and have loved all the retro-racer homages that have launched on mobile over the years, like Horizon Chase, Highway Runners, or the Final Freeway series. I also happened to own a Sega Master System when I was a kid, and the pack-in game was the classic arcade motorcycle racer Hang-On, so I have all sorts of fond memories of retro motorcycle racing. The trailer for Retro Highway looked to call back to many of those classics, while also putting its own modern mobile gaming spin on things with missions to complete and an upgrade system to work through. Here's the launch trailer so you can see Retro Highway in action...

If you've ever found yourself playing an RPG and thinking to yourself how much you enjoy moving a character around simple maps, winning battles by pushing the fight button, and skipping through a banal trope-laden story, but wishing that it didn't take so darned much time and thinking to beat, has Kemco got the game for you. Archlion Saga [Free] is a super-simplified JRPG, and when I say super-simplified I mean that it makes Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest look like Shin Megami Tensei 3: Nocturne. But it's not ashamed of this fact at all. The game trumpets its brevity and low difficulty as key features, a sort of relief from the usual overly-long game that ends up thrown in a pile of unfinished purchases. It's not a concept I'm opposed to, but Kemco doesn't pull it off very well...

'Ovivo' Review - No Grey Areas

'Ovivo' Review - No Grey Areas

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April 9th, 2018 7:00 PM EDT by Andrew Fretz in $1.99, 5 stars, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Platform, Reviews
$1.99 Buy Now

You don't usually think of meditation and video games in the same thought. The serene calm you search for in meditation seems antithetical to the pulse pounding shooters or brain scratching puzzles or edge of your seat cinematic story books you find in most games. It seems to be a weird way to introduce a game, as one that does not drive the brain with sensory overload. But that is a core part of Ovivo's [$1.99] identity. So enough talking about what it isn't and what it doesn't do, because there is a lot of meat on the bone of this trimmed down gem...

The original Pako - Car Chase Simulator [$1.99 / Free] began life on mobile back in the summer of 2014 as a super fun and stylish endless survival driving game, and it only grew and grew from there with a slew of updates in the years that followed. Eventually it found its way to desktop where it was also quite well-received. For the sequel, developer Tree Men Games went in the opposite direction, creating a game for desktop and console first and then porting it to mobile in January of this year. To get the game working well on mobile, the visuals were toned down and some of the content from the console and PC version was left out, but that didn't stop Pako 2 [$1.99] from being one of the most fun releases of 2018 so far. Now Tree Men are beginning to flesh out the mobile version to bring it more on par with its older siblings, and today a new Pako 2 update has added a new level and three new vehicles into the game...

Late last month, Polish developer Lichthund and Canadian publisher Noodlecake unleashed the German-themed fury of Lichtspeer [$3.99] into the iOS App Store, nearly creating an international incident. We fell in love with the absurdity of Lichtspeer when we first saw a preview of it during GDC last year, and were a bit sad to see that the game was available on pretty much every platform besides iOS before finally launching a month ago. But the multi-platform fun doesn't end there, as today Lichtspeer has also arrived on Android via the Google Play Store and the iOS version has received a free update which adds in Apple TV support. Yes, Lichtspeer on your Apple TV for free if you already own the iOS version. Do note that the Apple TV version requires the use of an MFi controller, and the iOS version's MFi support has been improved as of this update just for good measure...

Okay, I know some people out there aren't going to believe me, but sometimes educational things can be fun. Sometimes fun things can be educational. Our parents and teachers weren't totally misguided. Exhibit A: logic puzzles. Are they the greatest puzzles out there? It depends on your tastes, but at the very least I expect most fans of video games to enjoy logic puzzles in some form or another. The interesting thing is that no matter how they are presented, they all come down to a set of very basic rules that can be diagrammed in a way that looks more like homework than entertainment. Throw in an element of time pressure and you've got yourself a blueprint for a fine video game...

Rhythm games are about the only things that have managed to coax me off Spotify as of late, and Cytus II [$1.99], the latest effort from prolific App Store develop Rayark, is undoubtedly one of the better offerings. Making a surprise appearance on iOS earlier this year, Cytus II takes some really compelling rhythm action and merges it with a cool sci-fi premise and a beautiful cyberpunk aesthetic, and we loved the resulting concoction in our glowing review on the game's release. As fervent fans of Rayark's previous titles will sure be familiar with at this point, Cytus II is set to receive a brand new update on March 15th, adding a brand new character expansion pack alongside some neat minor fixes just one week after the game's full Android release on March 8th...

One game that launched not too long ago but has flown criminally under the radar since then is The Scrungeon Depths [$4.99] from developer Chase Holton, aka When's Lunch? Games. It's a top-down dungeon crawler that released for iOS, Android, and Steam back in early November of last year. We have a tough job here at TouchArcade as the App Store sees hundreds of releases each week, and try as we might to bring all the great games to the surface there are many that inevitably slip through the cracks. I briefly played The Scrungeon Depths when it hit in November, as I try to do with all the new games each week, and thought it seemed just fine, but never dove back in beyond that initial play test. It wasn't until this year that I got around to really giving it a go, and it has impressed me so much that I wish I'd realized it sooner as I'd certainly have included it in my top games of the year. So it goes on mobile, but just today a huge version 2.0 update arrived for The Scrungeon Depths and I figure that's good enough reason to talk about this gem of game and hopefully bring it some much needed attention. First, the trailer for the new update...

You all are probably familiar with developer Paul Pridham, aka Madgarden, through his collaboration work with Rocketcat Games on titles such as Punch Quest [Free] and Death Road to Canada [$12.99], but did you know this one man wonder has also been making and releasing solo projects for many years now? It's true! One such project is the extremely laid back space shooter Chillaxian [$1.99], which he originally launched back in July of 2013. As you might have guessed from the game's title, this is an homage to the classic arcade shooter Galaxian, but like… more chill, maannnn. Move back and forth across the bottom of the screen as you fire at waves of enemies at the top of the screen. However, in Chillaxian these groups of enemies are much more lively and expand and contract in a mesmerizing–and yes, chill–kind of way. Blast through as many levels as you can, with checkpoints every ten levels and boss fights every 5 waves. It's simple, relaxed alien blasting that we really enjoyed in our original review from 2013...

Following its very well-received release on Steam back in March of 2016, developer Clever Plays brought their awesome roguelike top-down shooter Leap of Fate [$3.99] to the iOS platform in August of the same year. Leap of Fate offered up infinite replay value with its randomly-generated design and roguelike elements, and it was all wrapped up in this ultra-cool cyberpunk dystopian theme. We gushed over Leap of Fate in our Game of the Week award and our subsequent 4.5 star review, but perhaps one of the most standout features of the iOS version of the game was its ingenious control system. Top-down dual-stick shooters have always worked quite well on the touchscreen, but Leap of Fate featured some pretty interesting special abilities which wouldn't seem like they'd work so well with virtual controls. Clever Plays figured it out though, and even went in-depth into the challenges of nailing such a good control scheme on mobile. Well, be that as it may, Leap of Fate players had still been requesting MFi controller support for the game since its release, especially since the Steam version was already built for controllers. It took a year and a half, but they've finally obliged on that request with a brand new update that hit Leap of Fate this week...

Developer Kenny Sun is best known for his unique puzzle games involving geometric shapes. Each of those games picks a shape and builds a puzzle experience around it that tends to differ entirely from the developer's previous games. There are some common points, of course. The games usually have a ton of levels, each one introduced with a card stating that it was made by Kenny Sun. They're also typically audiovisual treats, albeit abstract ones. A Hollow Doorway [Free] follows in the footsteps of games like Yankai's Triangle [$2.99] and Yankai's Peak [$2.99] in some ways, but it's different in that this is more of a game of reflexes than considered thought. It has this developer's usual flourishes, but in terms of mechanics, it's closer to something like Super Hexagon [$2.99] than the positional puzzles seen in the last couple of Sun games...

While Ironhide Games made a big splash last year with their tower defense/real-time strategy hybrid Iron Marines [$4.99], but we can't go forgetting that they're also responsible for three of the very best action tower defense games around: The Kingdom Rush trilogy. All three of these games have been well-maintained by Ironhide over the years, and just in this past week they've set out to support the iPhone versions of each with full screen support for the iPhone X. Of course, it took Ironhide like 6 years to finally release a Universal build of a game with Iron Marines, so chances are if you're an iPad Kingdom Rush player you don't know and don't care than an iPhone X update is available for these games. And that's fine! Avert your eyes iPad people!..

One of the better puzzle games released last year was Swim Out [$2.99] from developer Lozange Lab, and now for the first time since its launch sale back in August it's currently available for a discounted price on both iOS and on the Google Play Store for Android, down from $2.99 to just $1.99 for a limited time. Swim Out is a turn-based puzzler that has you trying to swim across a body of water while not crossing paths or otherwise interfering with your fellow aquatics enthusiasts. With more than 100 levels, a dozen different types of swimmers, and a dozen different objects to swim your way around, Swim Out is a genuinely challenging and really satisfying puzzler that will keep you busy for quite some time...

'Cytus II' Review - Finger Dance Revolution

Some developers just demonstrate a knack for certain genres and decide to stick with them. It's not a bad way to go, and since Rayark has already given us several quality rhythm games like Cytus and VOEZ, it's only natural that the studio might want to revisit that particular music-saturated well again. Happily, what it's come up with in Cytus II [$1.99] is the best kind of sequel, one that should please fans of the first game while also assuring you don't require any knowledge of it...

Back in August of last year, Daylight Studios brought their quirky simulation game Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?! [$4.99]from desktop to mobile, tasking players with creating a successful weapon shop from the ground up and expanding it across a wacky land of potato people while providing adventurers with the weaponry they need for their various quests. While the game had a dedicated fan base on desktop that loved having a version to play on the go, many wondered whether any of the additional content released for the desktop version would ever make its way to the mobile game. Well, today Daylight has announced that the DLC pack titled Spud Tales: Journey to Olympus will be arriving on both iOS and Android this Friday, January 19th at a price of $1.99. ..

It was 2015 when I first saw the developer of the game Let Them Come [$1.99] describe what his game would be about in our Upcoming Games forum, and I've been keeping an eye on the game's development ever since because the idea at its core was pretty smart and its visuals retro in a good way. After a long journey that took a detour to the lands of Steam, Let Them Come has finally hit the App Store, and I'm glad to say that it lives up to my expectations in terms of gameplay. At least so far; I haven't been able to get too deep into the game because I keep getting this weird crash that ruins my runs and has me start all over again. That crashing issue aside, Let Them Come appears to flesh out its simple concept very well...

SEGA Forever, the SEGA initiative to bring some of their classic library to mobile devices, has had quite the year. It launched in the early summer in a rather dismal state, faced a swift backlash, and has been trying to crawl its way back up ever since. While largely limited to games from SEGA's 16-bit console thus far, the selection has been eclectic to say the least. I'm not surprised the team wants to close out the calendar year on something of a safe note with the release of Gunstar Heroes [Free], a game that has quietly become one of the most popular classics in SEGA's back catalog. It's one of the more frequent re-releases from that era, and even iOS has played host to a version before...

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