Category Archives: Universal

Good news for fans of Crystal Siege [$2.99 (HD)], the action/tower-defense game published by FDG that released last year. The game has been stuck on the iPad since its release, but FDG is releasing the iPhone version this week, and they're going to make it a free universal update instead of a separate iPhone version. The update should be available on Thursday, April 30th. With the new update coming out, the game is on sale for $2.99 this week, so now's a good time to pick it up if you're interested...

I am definitely a formalist when it comes to video games. I don't think that games without structure or failure conditions are any less valuable as interactive works or as artistic achievements. I just enjoy my time with clickers more than I do, say, The Sailor's Dream [$3.99]. I like structure and progression, having a goal to attain. It motivates me to play, and when I no longer care about the goal, that will get me to stop playing. Simple as that. ..

After meandering deep inside Hearthstone's [Free] Blackrock Mountain these last three weeks, we've arrived at Blackwing Lair, Lord Victor Nefarius' seat of power within Blackrock Mountain. Nefarius tinkers with blood of the various dragon flights to create an unstoppable army (it's not an accident, I think, that Nefarius's name, Victor, is the same as another famous scientist's, Victor Frankestein). This week's Wing is definitely feeling more dragonlike, with the likes of Razorgore, Vaelastraz, and Chromaggus being the first three bosses and their creator, Lord Nefarius, who turns into a Dragon, awaiting you at the end...

'Hellrider' review - Ducks of Anarchy

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Have you ever wanted to ride a motorcycle through Hell as a duck? Well, Hellrider [Free] is your huckleberry. Accompanied by a slick set of pixelated visuals and an appropriately chiptune soundtrack, Hellrider sees players riding a motorcycle through a hellish landscape, avoiding lava at two sides and a heap of different obstacles. By default you'll start by veering off into one direction, and a simple tap anywhere will change your course. By tapping rapidly you'll stay in place, but eventually you'll need to commit. The animation is very slick on an iPhone 6, and the controls are pretty much instant...

One side-effect of Apple requiring an annual fee from developers is that, if the developer goes out of business, their games drop off the App Store. That's what happened with Spanish indies Blue Shadow and their gravity-based platformer Naught. So while anyone with an Android device can still download Naught and its sequel, they've been missing from the iOS App Store. You can't keep a good indie team down, though, and now former Blue Shadow developers have returned as Wild Sphere, and Naught is back on your Apple device...

It's time for more Hearthstone[Free] Solo Adventures as the fourth wing of Blackrock Mountain Adventure (BRM) has just opened. Now that you've cleaned out BRM's Blackrock Depths, Molten Core, and Blackrock Spire, it's time to take on Blackwing Lair. The bosses Razorgore, Vaelastraz, Chromaggus, and Lord Victor Nefarius are expecting you, and if you beat them, you get the Legendary Chromaggus. Today's Wing also includes two Class Challenges, Warlock and Rogue...

Diego Cathalifaud's mobile roguelike trilogy is concluding with another solid game: Arcane Tower [$1.99]. After the fun Amber Halls [$1.99] and Power Grounds [$0.99] each released last year, a game with similar flat visuals and roguelike gameplay. It's a great way to end the trilogy, bringing another solid game that's great on the go...

Back in September, every player who enjoys strategy games on iOS read in utter disbelief the news that Shenandoah Studio, the developer of some of the most acclaimed iOS wargames, and some of my personal favorites, such as Battle of the Bulge, Drive on Moscow, and Desert Fox, was acquired by strategy-gaming giant, Slitherine. Most players didn't know how to process the news, especially because at the time Shenandoah was developing its Gettysburg: The Tide Turns game, which it had kickstarted with some success. The acquisition was followed by too many months of silence on behalf of both Shenandoah and Slitherine...

Well, Minecraft Pocket Edition (MCPE) [$6.99] developer Tommaso Checchi has just given a lovely present to all those who play Minecraft on their mobile devices by announcing that the Nether is finally in active development for MCPE. Players have been wishing for the Nether to be included in MCPE almost as intensely as they had been wishing for the inclusion of infinite worlds. Since infinite worlds were added in a recent update, players were expecting that the Nether would be next...

Good news! The Disc Drivin' [$2.99 / Free / $4.99 (HD)] update that includes three new tracks and iPhone 6/Plus optimizations has just launched on the App Store. Our long national nightmare is over! All three versions of the game have been updated with the new courses and features as appropirate. The game's three themes: ice, desert, and road, are all represented in each of the three new courses...

Tankers, prepare to roll those tanks out of the garage because World of Tanks Blitz [Free] is releasing its 1.8 Update around 5:30 pm PST tomorrow, April 22nd. As we described in a recent article, this update introduces Battle Missions, a new (and, hopefully, actually useful) Tutorial Mode, as well as a Demo Account System that allows new players to jump right into battle without wasting time creating a full account...

Back in late February, EA soft-launched a new UFC mixed martial arts game called simply EA Sports UFC [Free], and as of this morning it looks like that soft-launch period is over and the game is now widely available. Now, if you've been around a while you may recall that EA released a mobile game called MMA by EA Sports way back in October of 2010, and it was actually quite good. This new UFC game is cut from the same cloth, but streamlined and improved in several ways. ..

Since its release 5 years ago, Carcassonne [$9.99], the iOS rendition of the award-winning board game, has been mentioned in almost any conversation on the potential for iOS games to be both functional and beautiful. The intuitive UI, the lovely board game look (showing Apple's Jony Ive that skeuomorphism can sometimes look great on a tablet), it's many single-player and multi-player options, all came together to make Carcassonne a great ambassador for iPad gaming. This is one of the games I always recommend to any friend who is taking his first steps into the world of mobile gaming...

'Halo: Spartan Strike' Review - An Evolutionary Success

Recently, Microsoft and the folks at 343 Industries launched two Halo spinoffs on the App Store. Halo: Spartan Assault [$5.99] originally debuted back in 2013 on Windows devices and is finally on iOS devices. However, Halo: Spartan Strike [$5.99] is a brand new adventure that saw a simultaneous launch on all pertinent platforms. As a sequel to Halo: Spartan Assault, it would make sense that Strike seeks to improve upon its predecessor and it succeeds in that regard. While the changes to the formula feel more evolutionary than revolutionary, those improvements are on a game that was already great  to begin with making Strike an even better dual stick shooter...

When Microsoft announced Halo: Spartan Assault way back in early 2013 as a dual-stick shooter set in the Halo universe that would be exclusive to the Windows platform, no one ever thought that the folks in Redmond would ever sign off on it eventually hitting Apple’s App Store (although we dreamed about it when we checked it out at E3 that year). Yet, here we are with Microsoft pulling a rabbit out of its hat and launching both Halo: Spartan Assault [$5.99] and Halo: Spartan Strike [$5.99] simultaneously on the App Store. As you’ll soon discover, both games play quite similarly to each other, but we’ll focus primarily on Spartan Assault and the gameplay basics in this review and will get into more specifics as well as the differences of Spartan Strike in Part II of our review...

In Hearthstone's [Free] mythos, Blackrock Spire is the first line of defense against all who would threaten Blackwing's domain. Your mission in week three of Blackrock Mountain Adventure (BRM) is to take down all the ogres, orcs, and dragonspawn protecting its halls and gather the spoils, some very interesting cards...

'Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft' 3rd Adventure Wing Open - Welcome to Blackrock Spire

It's been a busy week for Hearthstone[Free], with the iPhone app finally arriving, and it's about to get busier. Blackrock Spire, the third wing of Blackrock Mountain Adventure (BRM) has just opened its gates to all who dare enter. Get ready to face Highlord Omokk, General Drakkisath, and Rend Blackhand in a fight to (their) death...

I remember the early days of the App Store, when twin-stick shooters roamed the landscape free and clear. They're a bit more rare now, as the genre got crowded and kind of played itself out. Geometry Wars: Touch [$0.99] remains un-updated for modern devices. At least Radiangames has cornered the market with JoyJoy [$1.99], Inferno 2 [$2.99], and the dual-stick shooter Metroidvania Powerpuff Girls: Defenders of Townsville [$3.99] which unfortunately is no longer for sales. I enjoyed the era of dual-stick shooters, because I liked the variety of games developers made with the conventions! Trigonarium [$1.99] should provide some hope for the masses, needing more dual joysticks to blast enemies from all over the place. If you like frantic shooters and going for high scores, all at a silky-smooth 60 frames per second, Trigonarium is the game for you...

Super Hexagon [$2.99] still has an outsized influence on mobile gaming, as minimalist, high-difficulty, arcade-style games keep coming out. Tiltagon [Free] from Jyri and Piia Kilpeläinen, decides to skew closer to Super Hexagon where many games are now taking influence from Flappy Bird and Crossy Road [Free]. The high-tempo electronic music, the hexagons, the frequent deaths, they all seem familiar. Tiltagon does an admirable job at mixing things up by being a tilt-based game that can't match the speed of touch-based games, but finds clever ways to fit in this arcade challenge genre...

The TouchArcade Borg Collective was pretty enamored with Pandemic: The Board Game [$6.99] when it came out in the halcyon days of 2013. We called it "a tight, focused package that demonstrates some of the best that tabletop and iOS design can offer," high praise for first-timers F2Z Digital Media. Good news, then, that the game is finally getting iPhone support later this week...

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