Category Archives: $4.99

Mobile platforms are in a tricky position when it comes to gaming. We rock some incredibly powerful little devices in our pockets, and as gamers we naturally want "console-like" games for them. The problem is that the actual experience of gaming is drastically different between consoles/PCs and smartphones/tablets, which is why smaller arcade-style games typically do better than deeper, more complex "console-like" games. One game which comes to mind as a great example of striking the perfect balance between a big, impressive gaming experience but fitting into the mobile gaming style is Rayark's Implosion - Never Lose Hope [$9.99]...

If there's a Youtuber that everyone knows (including many non-gamer friends of mine) is PewDiePie, also known by few as Felix Kjellberg. Well, his legend continues to grow since PewDiePie's first mobile game, PewDiePie: Legend of the Brofist [$4.99], has hit the App Store, and I have a hunch it will see plenty of downloads. This 2D platformer takes place in a very weird universe filled with Youtube stars like Marzia, CinammonToastKen, JackSepticEye, Cryaotic, Markiplier, and, of course, PewDiePie himself. Unsurprisingly, all the Youtubers have lent their voices to the game, so that's a bonus. The game has plenty of collectibles (including brocoins, of course), bosses, and generally plenty to do. You'll also have the chance to prove that you are a 'hardcore gamer.'..




I feel like I've written about this before, but Kemco and their developers have an odd approach to sequels. They're not too big on them, for starters, with only EXE-Create among Kemco's stable of developers doing them with any sort of regularity. Then, when they actually do sequels, there are virtually no links at all to the previous games, save perhaps a single character or location that reoccurs. They'll even completely change the gameplay systems to the point that no one would be able to guess it was a sequel if it weren't labeled as such. It's not something that bothers me much in general, but Asdivine Dios [Free / $0.99] is one case where I would have appreciated a safe sequel. I've made no secret of my opinion that the first game, Asdivine Hearts [$3.99], is the best game in Kemco's iOS line-up, and I was rather excited to hear the series would be continuing...

Few games have the notoriety of the Grand Theft Auto franchise; if you were around when they started coming out, you'll remember the uproar, all the newspaper articles (those were still a thing back then), and the news "experts" who decried all the violence and bad language. Fast forward a few years, and no one really blinks an eye anymore about these games, a sign of the times I suppose. GTA III [$4.99], GTA: Vice City [$4.99] , GTA: San Andreas [$6.99] have made the trip from consoles to the iOS streets these last few years, and Rockstar Games even made a GTA game specifically for playing on the go, GTA: Chinatown Wars [$4.99] which originally released on the Nintendo DS but was faithfully ported to mobile...

'Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville' Review - Can I Kill One More Zombie Mom, Please?

Although the tide has subsided a bit, it's still pretty hard not to bump into a few zombies when playing video games or watching TV shows. We are definitely past the zombie wave crest, but those lovely creatures are still dragging their destroyed bodies towards us every opportunity they get. The zombie theme's popularity makes any new game about zombies a "been there-done that" kind of affair. Still, we do occasionally see games that use the zombie theme well, and Sarah Northway's Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville [$4.99], a strategy sim game about restoring (or remaking) civilization after the zombie apocalypse, is definitely one of the good ones. Rebuild 3, much like The Walking Dead, cleverly uses zombies as the backdrop to the challenges of rebuilding society after it collapses...

'Worms 4' Review - Scorched Earthworm

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September 17th, 2015 12:22 PM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in $4.99, 4 stars, Arcade, Games, Reviews, Strategy, Universal
$4.99 Buy Now

Some of my favorite gaming memories while growing up were playing Worms with my older brother on PC. He was always quite a bit better than me, as older brothers are (and he still is), but it was still incredibly fun slinging Super Sheep, Concrete Donkeys, and Holy Hand Grenades at each other until he whittled me down to nothing. Imagine my delight, then, when several years ago I learned Worms would be coming to iPhone! I bought every iteration on day one, and even though they weren't perfect, Team 17 managed to get it just a little bit more right every time. And now, finally, we have Worms 4 [$4.99], a sequel tailor made for mobile...

It's been almost five years since Aralon: Sword And Shadow released [$4.99]. In that five years, there have been regrettably few 3D RPGs released on iOS that can sit comfortably beside it. Angel Sword [$4.99] is the latest to tackle the genre, and although it has a strong enough start, it quickly burns off much of its goodwill. The end result is something that looks decent enough, but plays like something from the early days of the App Store. It's nowhere near Aralon in terms of complexity and enjoyment, instead feeling very much like a prettied-up Ravensword: The Fallen King [$2.99]. I'm not saying there isn't any fun to be had here, but it comes in fits and spurts between long sessions of incredibly tedious grinding...

'Oraia Rift' Review - The Good, The Bad, And The Dull

There's a surprisingly competent action-adventure game contained within Oraia Rift [$1.99]. There are lots of abilities to collect, most of which will be used to solve puzzles here and there throughout the game. The puzzles themselves are engaging enough, though fans of games like Legend Of Zelda will find very few new ideas among them. Lots of block-pushing, torch-lighting, switch-pulling, and that sort of thing. There are plenty of enemies to fight, including some bosses, though the combat isn't terribly satisfying on the whole. The world itself is a big, semi-connected maze that will have you backtracking to use keys or new-found abilities to open the way forward. It's a reasonably attractive game, too, particularly considering it's an indie effort. There are a few hours of solid enjoyment to be found here...

'Power Ping Pong' Review - Tablet Tennis

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September 14th, 2015 12:27 PM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in $4.99, 4 stars, Arcade, Games, Reviews, Sports, Universal
$4.99 Buy Now

Have you ever played one of those games that everyone raves about, but it doesn’t click with you? It looks really fun and should be right up your alley, but for some reason you can’t crack it. “What’s wrong with me?” you might wonder. “Am I doing something dumb?” Well, if you couldn’t guess, that was my first experience with Chillingo’s Power Ping Pong [$4.99]. After playing for about a week now, I think I’m finally figuring out what was wrong. We’ll get to all that soon enough, but first: what is it?..

Dungeon Of the Endless [$1.99 (HD)] is an odd hybrid. On each level, you'll take your chosen heroes through a room-by-room search, looking for the exit. The layouts are random, so you'll never know what's behind each door until you open it. Sometimes you'll find a merchant who will sell you new gear, other times you'll find a room full of alien creatures ready to feast on your bones. For this part of the level, you're essentially going through the roguelike motions, trying to power up your characters and gather resources without pushing yourself too far and getting killed. Once you find the exit, there's a little twist. You'll need to go back to the starting room, pick up the heavy crystal contained within, and slowly carry it to the exit while constant attacks are rained down on you. You'll need to prepare ahead of time by spending resources on turrets and other such defenses, essentially setting up as though you're playing a tower defense game. Mixing genres is sometimes a recipe for disaster, but Dungeon Of The Endless manages itself quite well...

When I first launched Ace Maverick [$4.99] by Futureworks Studios I was immediately hit in the face with a sharp blast of electric guitar. It was like a Marshall stack violently sneezing into my ears. And while I’d love to take this opening further and use that riff as some kind of metaphor for the game itself, I’m not going to do that. The riff happened, and I just thought you should know about it. Case closed...

'Lara Croft Go' Review - Spear Beats Gun

I'm so glad that Square Enix has let its Montreal branch go crazy with great ideas for mobile versions of their licenses. Like, Lara Croft Relic Run [Free] isn't the worst idea since Temple Run [Free] exists, but did the world really need it? Instead, Square Enix Montreal has gotten to go wild with clever and whimsical concepts such as Hitman Go [$4.99] and Hitman Sniper [$1.99]. Now, they expand out into the Tomb Raider franchise with Lara Croft Go [$4.99], which takes the Hitman Go formula of being a turn-based board-style game and makes it about solving puzzles and staying alive in the tomb raiding setting. It abandons the board game style of Hitman Go, while keeping similar gameplay. And much like Hitman Go, it winds up doing some really clever things that make it another must-play game...

It was nearly a year ago now that Surgeon Simulator [$4.99] developer Bossa Studios unveiled their latest wacky creation, an open-world bread simulator called I Am Bread [$4.99]. Yes, it's just as silly as it sounds. You (awkwardly) control a little slice of bread as it explores a highly detailed house in search of its ultimate goal: being toasted in a toaster. Or by a hair dryer. Or an iron. Or a lamp. Pretty much any way you can get your bread toasted is just fine, and that's all part of the fun! After making my dreams come true back in January and confirming it was coming to mobile, the long wait is finally over as I Am Bread has hit the App Store...

It's already been a pretty intense day of new iOS games, but before we've even had a chance to recover there's a late arrival that a lot of people having been waiting for: Sarah Northway's Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadsville [$4.99]. After a couple of device compatibility snafus that pushed the previously planned release dates back, Rebuild 3 has finally found its way to the App Store!..

There was a joyous uproar this past June when Klei Entertainment confirmed long-standing rumors that their hit survival game Don't Starve would be coming to iOS in a special "Pocket Edition" version of the game. Then just over a week later it was revealed that Don't Starve: Pocket Edition [$4.99] would be an iPad-only release. Cue cries of dispair across the globe and an avalanche of jokes about needing humongous jeans to fit the Pocket Edition of Don't Starve in your actual pocket. Yes, we all had a good laugh and a good cry. Well, Klei didn't like seeing that rollercoaster of emotions, so just a few days later they teased about Don't Starve coming to iPhones as well. That time is finally almost upon us, as Klei tweeted earlier today that a Universal update for Don't Starve: Pocket Edition is coming this Thursday...

'Zoombinis' Review - Edutainment at its Most Adorable

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September 1st, 2015 10:59 AM EDT by Chris Carter in $4.99, 3.5 stars, Games, iPad Games, Puzzle, Reviews
$4.99 Buy Now

As a kid, I was pretty big into edutainment games. Any excuse to play video games in school I took, from Number Munchers to Oregon Trail. Some titles were more "entertainment" than "education," but I ran with it anyway -- and in some cases, I taught my fellow classmates how to earn a high score. Good enough, right?  However, in all my childhood I never had a chance to play Zoombinis [$4.99 (HD)]. I'm glad that I changed that recently with its iPad release, even if it hasn't aged all that well...

There have been a lot of weird crossovers throughout the history of entertainment, and only half of them involve Angry Birds.  Remember when Inspector Gadget showed up on the Super Mario Bros. Super Show, or that time when Archie met the Punisher, or when the Harlem Globetrotters helped Scooby-Doo and the gang solve a mystery? If you look at it that way, perhaps Pocket God Vs Desert Ashes [$4.99] isn't that strange after all. Still, a combination of Bolt Creative's Pocket God [$0.99] and Nine Tales Digital's Mecho Wars/Desert Ashes probably wouldn't be the first team-up you would imagine for either franchise, and it certainly begs a question or two. How exactly could they reconcile the former's simple god game mechanics with the latter's Advance Wars-inspired turn-based strategy?..

When you sit down to write a review of the mobile port of an older PC game, it can get tricky. As times change, so does the context in which we view different games, and playing the 2004 PC Game Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 (RCT 3) [$2.99] on my iPad and iPhone in 2015 is definitely an interesting, and quite new, experience in itself. Add to that my sense of nostalgia when playing games I used to play back in the day when they came out (although when it came to management games, I was more into the older Theme Hospital than the RollerCoaster Tycoon games), and reviewing a game like RCT 3 becomes an interesting exercise in detachment; I have to make sure I review what I see and play rather than what I remember...

It's a well-known fact that spiders are the most vile, disgusting, and completely unnecessary creatures to ever grace our planet. Literally nobody likes spiders, and if they say they do, they're just lying to themselves. Snakes? Not a problem. Rats or mice? Totes adorbs if you ask me. Scorpions? Total bad asses. Spiders? Kill them all with fire. Now, my dislike of spiders has definitely gotten better over the years. I no longer cower at even the sight of a harmless daddy long legs, and playing as a spider in Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor [$1.99 / $1.99 (HD)] has never been that big of a problem for me, though I do find it a bit icky. ..

If you like strategy games even a bit, then you probably already know all about Mode 7 Game's Frozen Synapse, the ultra-stylish and ultra-demanding turn-based strategy game that really stood out when it was originally released on the PC and then ported to iOS. The game was incredibly unforgiving, which was part of its charm as it rewarded meticulous planning. Now, Double Eleven had decided to brings its remake, Frozen Synapse Prime [$4.99], to iOS after the Steam and Vita release. Double Eleven took Frozen Synapse and redesigned it to make it more accessible while still retaining the original game's charm. The game was received quite well, with many players claiming they prefer this version of the game over the original...

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