Category Archives: $2.99

'Deep Under The Sky' Review - A Beautiful Physics-Based Puzzler

Deep Under The Sky [$3.99] is a really fascinating game that winds up being a game that's really fun to play – it has a variety of things to do that are enjoyable to play with in motion, the game is set up to not be frustrating to play, and it makes a lot of its premise by presenting tricky challenges to solve. It does so well at so many things, that while calling a physics-based puzzle-platformer is perhaps the closest approximation of a descriptor for the game, it's got appeal beyond just what those words mean – and it's just so gorgeous and well-made that it's worth checking out no matter what...

Back in February, video gaming personality Seanbaby and his small studio Ninja Crime released Calculords [$2.99], and awesome mashup of card-battling, lane defense and math. Yes, math, like mathematics. Multiplication, addition, subtraction… all that stuff. Despite the potential for Calculords to be educational, the various elements of the game clicked together in a brilliant way, and we really enjoyed it in our review. There were a few drawbacks to the game, though. Most notably it wasn't a "true" widescreen game so it had borders on 4-inch iOS devices, and it felt a little light on content with no multiplayer and a limited number of AI opponents to face in the campaign...

'Catchup - Abstract Strategy' Review - Strategy So Good, You Don't Need Condiments

I think the key to a really great strategy game lies in finding the correct balance between accessibility and depth. Not that success can't be found on either side, as the longevity of Checkers and Go prove, but at least for me, I like my strategy games to be fairly easy to pick up but with a nice, long tail of mastery. Fortunately, there are a lot of very clever strategy game designers out there, so I never feel like I go too long without something to satisfy my urges. The latest one to catch me is appropriately named Catchup [$2.99], an iOS version of a board game released a few years back. It's hard to imagine a strategy game with simpler rules than this, but the game still provides a satisfyingly complex punch...

There's a pretty decent assortment of Adventure Time games available on the App Store now, and while they're not exactly blazing trails for the hobby, just about all of them are quite a bit better than a lot of licensed titles end up being. Adventure Time has already tackled the side-scrolling runner, sort of, in Ski Safari: Adventure Time [$0.99], and now it's taking a swing at the behind the back runner with Time Tangle: Adventure Time [$2.99]. This game is coming at us from the developers of Indiana Stone [$2.99], TwinSky, and like that game, it's got a very different idea of how to approach a well-mined concept...

One of the most charming, lovable and fun games in the history of the App Store is Andreas Illiger's breakout hit Tiny Wings [$0.99]. Originally launched in early 2011, Tiny Wings took the world by storm with its simple, one-touch, belly-sliding gameplay, watercolor-like visuals, and absolutely killer music. It wasn't just that it was a great mobile game, but something about Tiny Wings hit players on an emotional level, and the game quickly topped the charts and dethroned the then king of the App Store Angry Birds. ..

'Astro Duel' for iPad Review - A Fabulous Single Device Local Multiplayer Arcade Game

With pixelated, triangular ships thrusting around an asteroid-studded starfield and issuing forth crunchy 8-bit sounds, the trappings of Astro Duel [$2.99 (HD)] would allow it to blend seamlessly into any eighties-era arcade. Yet, Astro Duel is timely, for it taps into the quiet renaissance currently unfolding in the mileu of razor-sharp in-person competition waged across a single screen. Whether sitting cheek-by-jowl around a Warlords machine, or in a tangle of controller cables strewn from a console running Bomberman or in front of a desktop PC running the latest indie sensation on Steam (if you're curious, try out Nidhogg, Samurai Gunn or Crawl), there is a particular intensity to testing your reflexes and tactics against those of your friends with no barriers between you...

For the most part, Regular Show games tend to fit the videogame mold far better than its Adventure Time brethren. Videogames are heavily cemented in the show itself, and there's hardly a season that passes by when stars Mordecai and Rigby veg out on the couch and game for hours on end. This time around the gang finds themselves in a tower defense-like situation, sparked by rival park manager Gene and The Great Prank War [$2.99]...

Back in October of 2011, Rocketcat Games blew our collective minds when they released Mage Gauntlet [$2.99] on the iPhone. No but really, Mage Gauntlet was a fantastic homage to 16-bit era action RPGs and we enjoyed it tremendously in our review. In the few months following release, several updates were released for Mage Gauntlet that tweaked things, fixed things, added some new things, and most significantly updated the game with Universal iPad support. But that was really the last time Mage Gauntlet got any serious update love, and ever since the iPhone 5 debuted in September of 2012, it's felt like it's sorely missing support for 4-inch widescreens...

Vivid Games have just released the first content update for their Greek mythology-based hack 'n slash game Godfire: Rise of Prometheus [$2.99]. While a free update with new content is always a welcome sight, this particular update, dubbed the Combat Update, seems to be sort of a mixed bag. First off, as the name implies, the combat has been significantly tweaked and in turn, according to Vivid, "the combat is now more dynamic, controls more responsive, animations more fluid, and finishers more vicious than before." Neat...

Duet [$2.99], Kumobious' take on the minimalist arcade challenge genre, has been steadily updated since its release last year, and it's getting an Epilogue update this Thursday that brings a ton of new levels and features...

'Traps N' Gemstones' Review - An Excellent Metroid-Style Indy Game

I hope no one takes this the wrong way, but Traps n' Gemstones [$4.99] isn't exactly the kind of game I've come to expect from prolific mobile developers Donut Games. Don't get me wrong, their games have a very consistent quality to them, and like their namesake, there isn't really a bad one in the bunch. Still, in the past, they've tended to put together highly-focused gameplay experiences, often building a game around mastery of a single concept, whether it be cutting grass, flinging monkeys, or batting a ball between cats. Short little score-attack affairs, for the most part, have been the bread and butter of Donut Games, and they've found a lot of success with that type of game...

It's been just over a month since Double Stallion's Big Action Mega Fight! [$2.99], or BAMF! for short, switched from being a free to play game and rejiggered itself to be a pay-once game with no in-app purchases. According to a recent interview with Pocketgamer, it looks like that decision is working out for the best. BAMF!'s designer Nicolas Barrière-Kucharski tells Pocketgamer "On a business level, during our $1.99 launch week June 25th to July 1st, revenue from the premium version of game across all versions surpassed lifetime revenue up to that point." That means in that in just that first week after switching to a paid game, BAMF! made more money than it had in the six months it existed as a free to play title. That's quite a turnaround...

We loved Paint it Back [Free] when it came out last year. After all, who doesn't love Picross? Only a complete monster. So, I have good news for you quality members of society: Paint it Back has new levels. The new levels come in a bonus room called The Archives. These levels are meant for advanced players who have torn through most of the game's rooms already, requiring 100 medals to unlock. Complete all of The Archives, and you'll unlock the Basement Dweller achievement...

I was sort of blown away last month when Semi Secret's seminal endless runner Canabalt [$2.99] received a substantial update for the first time in nearly three years, but apparently that was just a warmup. Today Canabalt version 2.0 has hit the App Store and it adds in all the additional modes and local multiplayer functionality that Android and Ouya players have been enjoying for the past couple of years, and which were hinted at for iOS players way back in 2012. The additional modes consist of eight variations of the original mode, which is now dubbed Origin, and they all focus on a single element of the Canabalt gameplay...

Panic Art Studios' Hero Siege [$2.99] is a frantic dual-stick shooter that released late last year. That initial version was fun, but certainly rough around the edges. Panic Art worked diligently to iron out its issues with many updates over the course of the last six months or so, and what we ended up with was a dual-stick shooter that we enjoyed very much, but felt that there was "tons of potential for Hero Siege to be more than what it is." Well, according to a post from Panic Art in our forums, some of that potential will be realized with a beefy update heading to the game adding tons of new stuff, chief among them cross-platform multiplayer. Here's a recent trailer dishing out all the details of the new update...

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