Category Archives: 3 stars

Right out of the gates, RPG Bonds of the Skies [$2.99] lost points with me. With the name, logo design and brown-haired, blue-clad hero with a red scarf, I was hoping, nay, praying this was going to be a Kemco take on the awesome Dreamcast RPG, Skies of Arcadia. You know, airships, sky pirates, a world in the sky, that type of thing. Unfortunately, it hews pretty close to the world design in most of Kemco's other RPGs: a bog-standard medieval fantasy world. Disappointing way to kick things off, but I can't be the only one who thought that, so I figured I'd clear it up immediately...

With The Wizard of Oz 75th Anniversary and spinoff upon us, it’s no wonder that developers have been capitalizing on the brand to create new iOS games. OzDefence is Dorothy’s latest over-the-rainbow adventure. It’s got one of the best art styles of all the Oz games. Fanciful toy soldiers, vibrant monsters with bumpers, health restoring bunny rabbits, blade twirling horses and other sinisterly sweet creatures are lurking in every board. If it weren’t for the dreaded pay wall and the lack of level diversity, this would have been one Oz adventure to be remembered. ..

Outer space is dangerous, but a boy and his dog brave the final frontier to eradicate the alien scum that stole their house. Salvation [Free] is free to try from Russian developer Foggy Bus, but 99¢ unlocks the full experience: right now, that means two extra planets on top of the first, Plankton...

With so many endless runners on the market, it's imperative that as a developer, you try everything you can to stick out in the crowd. With top-notch visuals that bring back memories of running through Mirror's Edge's beautiful city, RunBot [Free] attempts to do just that...

I’ve tinkered with a lot of real-time strategy games over the 30 or so years that I’ve been gaming. My relationship with the RTS genre has been a torturous one. It’s a genre that I have wanted to like more than I have actually enjoyed. Why that should be is complicated, but mostly it’s because I was intimidated by the complexity of the game style and the time investment needed to play RTS games effectively. Ironically, the complexity of the genre was also the reason I never lost interest in RTS games. Inevitably, some new RTS game would come along and capture my attention with siren calls of deep game play, complex strategies and detailed worlds...

Before we get started, it should be pointed out that despite the title, Lightning Fighter 2 [Free / Free (HD)] ain't so much a sequel as it is a remix of the original...

Game of Watchcraft: Spawn of Squishy [$0.99 (HD)] takes only a few minutes to master, but Australian indie developer Clicker stretches that into hours by capitalizing on a retro style and offering minor incentives that encourage players to continue adventuring for as long as they want...

If you’ve ever built a car for a pinewood derby, then you probably know what I mean when I say having all the parts isn’t enough. Sure, you’ve got a piece of wood that kind of looks like a car and it has four wheels that spin, but you’re way back in last place while the rest of the heat is already at the end of the track. While your little block of sawdust chugs along, you wonder where you went wrong. You’ve got all the parts, after all. Is it not still a pinewood derby racer?..

Is there a more American game character than Pac-Man? I know it's Japanese, but come on, has there ever been a better metaphor for Fitzgerald's American Dream? The Jay Gatsby of games swallows whole each and every pellet in its path, with no hope of stopping, until the ghosts of one's past offer death's sweet release. Unlike Tetris, a Soviet fantasy about placing blocks in an orderly fashion...

Sometimes you want your villain to have a face. Perhaps it’s Voldemort, Thanos, Zod or some creepy dude with a villainous “muahahaha” laugh. Then, there are the villains who have no faces. In the case of Ultima Forever: Quest for the Avatar [Free], you’re up against The Black Weep. No, this isn’t a group of Templars; rather, it’s a vile sickness - much like Resident Evil’s T-Virus - that turns its infected into headless-undead abominations. You’ve got to become the Avatar of Renown and save the world. Let the hero’s quest begin...

It's no wonder that endless runners have earned the bad reputation that they have. It’s just too easy for iOS developers to crank out one after another, each relying on in-app purchases and familiar game mechanics to make their money. ..

It is a known fact that pigs are constantly up to no good. They are an ever-present threat to the safety and survival of the human race, which is why we all work hard to keep them in check by eating a lot of bacon. Their natural wickedness has made them a popular target in many games, but in recent times, pig sympathy has resulted in some games where you take the side of the pigs. Confusion and conflict are sure to follow such a jarring shift of perspective, which is why I recommend talking a half-step first with Kamikaze Pigs [Free]...

Some things are released into the world brimming with potential but ultimately unfinished or broken in some fundamental manner. Frankenstein’s monster. The Leaning Tower of Pisa. Battlecruiser 3000 A.D. Add War of the Zombie [$2.99] to the list. War of the Zombie is a game brimming with great ideas that are held back by a combination of annoying bugs and poorly implemented features. The problems aren’t game-breaking for the most part, but they definitely detract from the overall experience. Despite its flaws, War of the Zombie is a game very much worth trying if you have a few spare dollars lying around. Even in its currently flawed state, the game gets enough right to provide at least a few hours of outstanding play time...

Tell me if this game sounds familiar. You walk around in a top down map, command cute creatures to fight other cute creatures, capture those creatures and choose when they can evolve. You guessed it… Pokemon. But that’s not the name of the debut game from Little Box Apps, the new company of Bryan Mitchell, the developer who made Geared. This game is called Monsters Invade: Oz [Free]. Yes, as in The Wizard of Oz, minus everything you know about L. Frank Baum’s beloved story, save the yellow brick road and Toto. ..

Having never played any of the previous games in the series, Sky Gamblers: Cold War [$4.99] was an entirely new experience for me. ..

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