GDC Austin: 'Canabalt' Hands-On Preview with Video

Semi Secret Software had a major hit on their hands with Wurdle [App Store], a Bookworm-like word searching game. It was released early in the life of the App Store and saw a positive reception both from review sites online and actual newspapers. Wurdle went on to sell close to a quarter of a million copies, and has since been Semi Secret Software's only entry on the App Store...

Watch Adam Saltsman Talk About His New Tactical Survival Game, 'Overland'

At last week's Juegos Rancheros event in Austin, Texas, Adam Saltsman—best known for his work on Canabalt [$2.99] and Hundreds [$4.99]—gave a short presentation introducing his new game, a survival tactics game called Overland...

There are a lot of great things about living in the totally digital world of the App Store. For one, you can magically beam new games and apps right out of thin air and onto your device without having to get off your lazy butt and drive to some store. However, while being lazy is great, an even bigger bonus to the App Store is the ability for developers to offer content and bug fix updates for months and even years after a game is initially released. Back in the day if you bought a game for your console that had a critical bug in it, you were pretty much stuck with it, and new content typically meant waiting for a sequel. That's not how we roll anymore. With that, here's a look at some of the best updates we saw this year...

Update Mondays: 'Angry Birds Seasons', 'Siralim', 'Family Guy: The Quest For Stuff', 'Injustice', And More

Hello everyone, and welcome to the week! It's time once again for our look back at the noteworthy updates of the last seven days. It's been another big week of updates, with the expected tons of holiday stuff and a few major updates that have nothing to do with the season. Warm up the cocoa, this is another big list like last week. Of course, you can keep an eye out for updates yourself using AppShopper Social [Free], the watchlist in the TouchArcade app [Free], or by participating in the TouchArcade forums, but this weekly summary is here to fill in the things you might have missed. Let's dig in!..

Today is Halloween, and as is usual with holidays or seasonal events, there's no shortage of iOS games that have updated with special content to commemorate the occasion. There are far too many Halloween updates to list them all individually, and even Apple themselves have reserved a special Halloween section in the App Store to highlight many of them. Be sure to check that out, but for this particular feature I've focused on three Halloween updates to games that are personal favorites of mine, and might otherwise have flown under the radar. Check 'em out, and if there are any other Halloween updates that have caught your eye be sure to shout them out in the comment section. Have a safe and happy Halloween!..

As a developer, if you're going to wade neck-deep into a crowded genre, especially one in a very crowded marketplace in general, you have to have some kind of means of standing out from the crowd. When it comes to side-scrolling running games, it's getting harder and harder to find something that can actually accomplish that job. Jack B. Nimble [$1.99], from developer Sean Noonan, opts to take the approach of a double-barreled appeal to nostalgia, with graphics that look like they came off a torqued-up Game Boy and a theme that will be instantly recognizable to Castlevania fans. It's got an interestingly familiar cadence to it that I don't see very often in this kind of game, and it will certainly have strong appeal for those who appreciate streamlined runners like Canabalt [$2.99] or Boson X [$2.99]...

Best iPhone and iPad Games of the Week: 9/5/14 - 'Mikey Boots' and 'Alone'

Another wild week of iOS game reviews this week, and the games that scored the highest were both titles that were highly anticipated by our community since we first caught wind of them. The Mikey games are a staple around here, especially since they were created on the TouchArcade forums. Somewhat similarly, Alone is something I've had my eye on since we first posted the trailer. There was a bunch of other stuff we reviewed this week, so be sure to check the other scores at the bottom of this post...

'ALONE' Review - Forever Alone

With all the gimmicks endless runners tend to have bolted on them these days, it's sometimes easy to forget that it all started with just a simple score attack. No IAPs, no coins, no cosmetic upgrades, no power-ups, just an endless, increasingly difficult, randomized stage and a challenge to see how far you can go before inevitably failing. That's not to say gimmicks are bad, as they can be quite a lot of fun. Just look at Jetpack Joyride [Free], which is so loaded with stuff you could almost forget about the goal of going farther in favor of collecting things and still have tons of fun. There's something about that pure experience, however. It's something I greatly appreciated in Boson X [$2.99], and it's something I very much enjoy here in ALONE [$1.99]...

LogoWe're down one Mike Meade on this podcast, but it's still an awesome episode. Or… Maybe that's why it's an awesome episode. Either way, Jared and I rock out for a solid 90 minutes chatting about all the huge releases this week and the subsequent drama they caused- Because, you know, video games and internet drama go hand in hand.

Don't forget to shoot us emails with any questions, feedback, or anything else relevant or irrelevant to podcast@toucharcade.com. We read 'em all, even if they don't make it into the podcast. As always, you can listen to us with the links below... And if you like what you hear, please subscribe and/or drop us a review in iTunes. Much appreciated!

 

iTunes Link: The TouchArcade Show
Zune Marketplace: TouchArcade.com Podcasts
RSS Feed: The TouchArcade Show
Direct Link: TouchArcadeShow-165.mp3, 86.8MB

Games

  • Modern Combat 5: Blackout [Free]
  • Hearthstone [Free]
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles [$3.99]
  • Traps n' Gemstones [$4.99]
  • Knight Girl [Free]
  • The King of Fighters '98 [$2.99]

News

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Welcome to another week of new iOS games. It felt like it might be kind of a "weak week" but it's actually turned out to be pretty stellar. The new X-Men game looks rad, Everplay's Bill Killem feels like Super Crate Box meets Canabalt (which is awesome), and OTTTD actually has me stoked to play a tower defense game for once. Oh, and totally get Bounden, it's one of the most unique experiences I've ever had on the iOS platform. You have to be all touchy feely with another human being though, so it's not for everyone. Finally, there's a freaking MacGyver game. Do I need to say any more than that?..

Blazing down hills on some super fly skies has never been part of my life, as I live in the flattest area in Sweden. Winter sports were always about snowball fights instead of graciously navigating between gates, or finding fresh snow to freestyle in...

If you've never heard of a game jam before, here's the basic idea: Take some kind of prompt, which can be as obscure as a single word to anything else you can think of, and make a game out of it. They're great opportunities to try out new things, whether its exploring Unity for the first time or fiddling with building a game around some procedural algorithm you've been thinking of. Game jams can be held online, or in person, but the goal is always the same: Build a simple game...

Runners are all over iTunes since Adam Atomic's groundbreaking Canabalt [$2.99] created a complex world with simple pixels that could offer simple yet challenging gameplay. Temple Run [Free], the first breakout runner hit that launched an invasion of running games on mobile devices, gave it a nice 3D edge that may not have accomplished the same noble attributes as Adam Atomic's indie hit but can be just as fun to play during those various moments in life when waiting is necessary...

I knew we were missing some games last night in that massive release roundup, and it turns out The Hunger Games: Catching Fire - Panem Run [Free] is the first of many titles that released at weird times instead of with the batch of other games. Basically, if you're wild about The Hunger Games in a general sense and you also love Temple Run [Free], this is the game for you...

Last month, The Guardian posted the findings of a survey of 2,000 British children and parents focused on the impact technology is having on the younger generation. Unsurprisingly, with the rise of tablets in the household, kids are reading less and less. It makes sense, in a way, as back in my day there wasn't a whole lot to do other than read as a kid who got booted off the family TV so your parents could watch something other than you playing Nintendo...

'Boson X' Review - An Amazing 'Super Hexagon'-Like Runner

Has it really only been four years? Four years since Canabalt [$2.99] burst onto the scene and arguably created and inarguably popularized a genre? Looking around the App Store today, it's hard to remember a time before endless runners, let alone the idea that it's all happened in less time than it took to make a fourth Spider-Man movie. The genre has certainly built quite a bit on top of the framework set by its originator, as well. Perspective changes, missions, power-ups, level-ups, currency, vehicles, mini-games, character customization, and more have been added to the genre, resulting in amazing games like Temple Run [Free], Punch Quest [Free], and Jetpack Joyride [Free]. Still, as we felt when we recently took a look back at Canabalt, there's something about the game's minimalism and tight mechanics that allow it to continue to stand out among the razzle and dazzle of its successors...

This is a little outside of what we'd normally post on TouchArcade, but I'm always watching (or listening to) talks from all sorts of industry-relevant events and you'd be surprised by the sort of super interesting or inspiring stuff you come across. This particular talk comes from Chillingo's Levi Buchanan at Casual Connect. Levi discusses ways developers squeeze impactful narrative into mobile games which might only be played for a few seconds at a time. He focuses on Cut the Rope [$0.99 / Free / $0.99 (HD) / Free (HD)], Where's My Water [$1.99 / Free], and Canabalt [$2.99] as three great examples as games with "thin slice narrative," arguing that the best mobile narratives take three things into consideration: Relevance, momentum, and voice...

Okay, yes, you're right, if there is one genre that has been flogged to death, it is probably the endless runner. Ever since the likes of Canabalt, every man and his dog, pet goldfish and best friend Barry have been trying to add something new to the scene. Many have tried, many have failed and many, many more will continue to do so...

The judges of the Independent Games Festival have been -- for better or worse -- the de facto kingmakers and secret-keepers of indie games development for over a decade now. Each year, the IGF panel nominates games for excellence in various aspects of game development, including audio, visual arts, design, and narrative. There are also categories for technical excellence, a showcase for student-made games, and the Nuovo Award, which honors "abstract ... and unconventional game development."..

'Hundreds' Review - Counting On Only the Best

Hundreds [$4.99] could almost get away without an explanation. Here's how the first level plays: you put your finger down on a circle. It starts growing, and a number counts up. When it hits 100, you win. You will never need a tutorial—anyone can learn to play...