Category Archives: Universal

'Puzzle to the Center of the Earth' Review - Miner Match-Thirty-Niner

There still aren't enough mining games out there in the world. Despite the resurgence of the genre on the mobile platform and recent mainstream hits like Steamworld Dig, I could probably play a new mining game every week without getting bored. There's something about digging down into the great unknown that fills a void many other titles can't, and Puzzle to the Center of the Earth [Free] manages to keep the core facets of the genre intact, while adding in some unique puzzle elements...

Drift'n'Drive [$1.99] is quite the fun chaotic top-down racing game. I was intrigued by the game when I saw a GIF of it in action with a whopping 32-car field, and it looked like something I had to play. And it lived up to my expectations. It's very much an arcade-like experience. The cars auto-accelerate, and have tires with low grip, making them drift-happy, and providing for a very chaotic game. And the only controls are left and right to steer, with a turbo boost that charges up over time. Helping with the chaos is the fact that the courses are generated randomly in the career mode, so it's about reacting to what might be coming up next and trying to stay on the road. Grass and dirt slow the car down, hitting trees and walls causes damage to the car, and it's possible to lose a wheel, which makes steering more difficult, until both front wheels are gone, and the vehicle is just straight-up wrecked...

Earlier this month we saw the release of Hail to the King: Deathbat [$4.99], a product of Subscience Studios and the band Avenged Sevenfold. Members of the band grew up playing video games, and when it came time to make their own, they wanted to create an homage to the games they loved playing back in the '80s and '90s. The combat and magic system in Deathbat is pretty simplistic, and the difficulty can be unforgiving. Those are the reasons I love the game so much, but those are also the reasons a lot of people didn't like the game so much. Opinions, you know? Because of the polarized feelings towards Deathbat, I imagine there were a lot of people who might have been interested in the game but were stuck on the fence. Well, if that describes you, now might be a good time to jump off the fence as Hail to the King: Deathbat is currently on sale for $1.99, down from its normal price of $4.99...

Yesterday, I remarked that it's rare for games to get complete overhauls in the way that Wave Wave [$2.99] just got. Well, Halfbrick just made me look stupid, as Age of Zombies [Free] has just gotten a "Season 2" update that takes the game and revamps its visual style. Gone is the pixel art, and in is a new 3D style, albeit one that tries to stay loyal to the original game's art. Halfbrick says that they're doing this in preparation for future content coming to the game. They've taken a keen interest in adding new stuff to the game, as there's been pretty much a new update every few weeks at this point. And with 3D, it may be easier to make new content without creating new pixel art – and with resolutions getting all screwy, going to 3D may be more future-proof...

Thomas Jansson doesn't believe in the saying "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" philosophy, clearly. His game Wave Wave [$2.99] has gotten a complete makeover in style and structure this week, with a 2.0 update that changes just about everything but the very core of the gameplay. The immediate change is the visual style, going from a contrasting black-white with triangular visuals to one that is based around specific colors, with text that's got very chunky pixels. The original version borrowed a lot with its menus from Super Hexagon [$2.99] – while an update changed things, this is definitely a step forward and a step back in regards to Wave Wave's relation with Super Hexagon...

For far too long, Surgeon Simulator [$5.99] fans who have wanted to play the game on the go have had to deal with the tyranny of playing on the iPad, and not on their phones. Well no more must you iPhone owners who want to transplant alien organs while sitting on the bus have to suffer! Bossa Studios has today made Surgeon Simulator universal, adding iPhone support to the previous iPad exclusive app. Certainly, any game going universal is a welcome sight, but given how this game is really based on precise actions, this might be better on bigger screens. ..

Super Crate Box [$1.99] has definitely spawned a few games inspired by it, to say the least, though games cutting too close has been a sensitive subject. But the game owes a lot to the original Mario Bros. in terms of structure, and Woah Dave [$0.99] from Choice Provisions, the former Gaijin Games, manages to take more after Nintendo's original than Vlambeer's modern. And it does a great job at making its own blend of challenging survival and situation management that I quite enjoyed...

If you loved Final Fantasy Tactics [$6.99 / $7.99 (HD)] but thought it would be better if all of the characters were anime girls, then Japanese indie SRPG Rime Berta [$4.99] may have caught your eye. It's a clear tip of the hat to games like the aforementioned, and in a lot of ways does a very competent job of aping its overall presentation and many of its systems. It's a bit lean on content, which is perhaps understandable given the size of the developer, but its biggest failings are in the fundamentals. It's a serious problem when there are quite a few excellent strategy RPGs on the App Store that, even if nothing else, manage to nail those aspects. In the end, Rime Berta is all dressed up with no place to go...

Last week we told you that Herocraft's tactical turn-based strategy game set in the Warhammer universe would be launching worldwide on October 28th. And do you know what today is? The 28th! Warhammer 40,000: Space Wolf [Free] is now officially available. Space Wolf is a turn-based strategy game with a heavy card element, but this isn't some card battler. People have likened it to the Metal Gear Ac!d series on the PSP, which is basically all I need to hear to download and check it out...

Remastered Version of PC Point-and-Click Adventure 'The Longest Journey' Launches in New Zealand and Australia

Classic-style adventure games have seen a resurgence over the past several years, but at the turn of the millennium things weren't all that rosy for the genre. Adventure games had ruled the early and mid '90s, but as console hardware improved and twitchier games like first-person shooters began to rise, our old friend the PC adventure game looked like it was going the way of the Dodo. That made the release of Funcom's The Longest Journey in 2000 pretty awkward. The game received massive critical acclaim, but sadly there just wasn't a whole lot of mainstream interest in adventure games at that time...

'Tilt to Live: Gauntlet's Revenge' Review: And I'm Dead Again

Sure, sometimes developers can give reasons for why they want to charge more money for something that are utter poppycock. Granted, I've known One Man Left since 2010, and I take them at their word that Tilt to Live: Gauntlet's Revenge [$2.99] was becoming too big and too separate to be just an add-on to Tilt to Live 2 [$2.99]. But in playing it, I think the position is really quite justified. This is pretty much its own game, only filtered through Tilt to Live's aesthetics and controls. And it winds up being this challenging gauntlet that's well worth checking out...

If you're looking for a turn-based strategy game or three to check out this weekend, I have good news: Rubicon Development's Great War Game series is free all weekend. This includes Great Little War Game HD [$1.99] which is universal and free, its massive follow-up Great Big War Game [$2.99], and Great Little War Game 2 [$2.99] which features portrait play, perfect if you need something for on the go. ..

Long-time TA'ers may remember a segment we used to do on our podcast called Jared's Kitty Korner, where each week we highlighted the cream of the crop in the world of cat games. We've since retired the segment, but every once in a while some hot cat game news pops up and it's time to briefly revisit the Korner. Today, that hot cat game news is that Rusty Moyher's Box Cat [$1.99] has received a much-needed update adding widescreen and iOS 8 support, as well as Retina graphics on the iPad...

'Rival Stars Basketball' Review - Draft N’ Grind

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October 24th, 2014 2:00 PM EST by Eric Ford in 3.5 stars, Card, Free, Games, iPad Games, iPhone games, Reviews, Sports, Universal
Free Buy Now

PikPok’s no stranger to making fun games (see the recently released Adventure Xpress [Free]) and with its latest release, the developer has decided to take on the card battler genre. Rival Stars Basketball [Free] takes a simplified card battle formula and infuses it with street basketball style. Rival Stars doesn’t have any significant missteps, but it’s just a bit too shallow in its current state to be anything more than a quick play...

Remedy Entertainment, known for making games like Alan Wake, the original Max Payne [$2.99] and the original Death Rally [$0.99], have just released their first mobile-exclusive game, Agents of Storm [Free] to the App Store. This is a take on the free-to-play base builder formula, but with a singleplayer focus: players build out a base with defenses and units, going out on missions with their units, as their units automatically attack, with the goal being to destroy the enemy base in each level. There are social hooks to get assistance from friends and compete to have the biggest and best base, but if you're the anti-social type, this may be for you, though this is a free-to-play game and requires online connectivity...

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