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It’s hard to turn any corner in the app store without bumping into a match three game clad in plate mail, wielding a sword, slinging some spells and grinding experience these days. Block Legend [$1.99], 1000000 [$2.99], Hero Emblems [$3.99], Dungeon Raid [$1.99], and even Puzzle Quest 2 [$2.99] back in the day. It’s hard to stand out in this genre, but shockingly, each of the games I listed is very different from the next, and there is a crazy amount of flexibility and variety in what you’d call a match three RPG. Guardian Sword [$2.99] from Picsoft doesn’t look like much at a glance, but under the surface lies a deep and strategic experience worth checking out...

Classic Reload - 'Spider: The Secret Of Bryce Manor'

Hello, gentle readers, and welcome to the first edition of the Classic Reload, a semi-random feature where we take a look at classic games from the App Store's past. Yes, it's a spin-off of the RPG Reload, but let's hope this is more Laverne & Shirley than Joanie Loves Chachi. Anyway, the idea here is the same. There are lots of great games in the iOS library that don't get talked about much anymore, even though they're still worth playing. When the App Store was fairly young it wasn't a huge problem, but with several years and countless hundreds of thousands of new apps behind us, some really great games have become invisible to many players. The aim of this column is to pick out some of those games and give them a thorough going-through to see how they hold up in the modern day and take a deeper dive than we may have initially. This will not be a weekly feature, but I do plan to put one out every once in a while. Think of it as a hopefully-pleasant surprise you can expect now and then...




The parade of licensed Warhammer games continues unabated with the release of Warhammer: Arcane Magic [$9.99] from Turbo Tape Games, which arrived earlier today ahead of the normal weekly new game release schedule. Hey, gotta get out ahead of that whole Angry Birds 2 thing, eh? ..

Sebastian Gosztyla's DUAL [Free] is a fun multi-device local multiplayer game where two people square off with their devices facing each other and either blast away at each other in competitive play or work together to destroy AI eneies in a cooperative mode. Now, the game is getting its first big update this week with a new mode, called Deflect. The mode has you trying to hit a ball past your opponent, with each ship having different shot effects. Gosztyla describes it as "a mix of soccer, tennis, and air hockey." The new trailer for the game shows off some of what the new mode and the game as a whole are about:..

'Battlestation: Harbinger' is a Spaceship Fleet Roguelike Coming in August

BugByte Games are hard at work on a space combat franchise called Battlestation, with the first game called Battlestation: First Contact [Free] that's been on the App Store for a few months now, and is a pretty cool space station building and defense game. While they gear up for a big desktop entry in the franchise called Battlestation: Army of Light, the second game in the series is about to drop on August 13th, called Battlestation: Harbinger. The game has you commanding a spaceship fleet exploring the galaxy, with BugByte claiming influence from FTL [$9.99 (HD)] and Out There [$4.99]. Here's a trailer that does a good job showing off some of the gameplay you can expect from this one:..

'To-Fu Fury' Review - Soy Milk Ninja

There's been a resurgence of games featuring tofu in the past year or so, but not all of them are necessarily worth checking out. Naturally, I gravitated towards a recent release called To-Fu Fury [$1.99], featuring piece of ninja tofu. I mean, when have ninjas ever let me down, right? While you won't be running on rooftops and taking down rival daimyos in epic combat, you will be flinging yourself across the screen and collecting pieces of Chi. It's more of a zen-like ninja experience, and that's completely fine with me, given how great the control scheme is...

Kimmo Lahtinen's Trigonarium [$1.99] is possibly my second-favorite dual-stick shooter this year, ahead of Xenowerk [$1.99] just in terms of this being more of a pick-up-and-play-friendly high score game, and behind Geometry Wars 3 [$4.99], because it's Geometry Wars. It's like being the second-most beautiful person on Earth. Anyway, I mention Trigonarium because the game has gotten another big update, this time adding a brand new "Ultimate" set of levels. ..

It's really tough to describe a game like Agar.io [Free]. It hearkens back to the old age of computing, back when Prodigy and CompuServe allowed users access to games at the cost of an hourly rate. There's something soothing about the experience, and since it's free and gets right into the action in seconds, you may as well try it out...

Roguelike and Dungeon Defense Hybrid 'Dungeon of the Endless' is Coming to iPad

Amplitude Studios has announced that they are bringing their game Dungeon of the Endless, a roguelike-inspired, quasi-turn-based, game of dungeon crawling and defense, to iPad this summer. The game's been available on desktop for a while now, and Amplitude has decided to adapt it to mobile, with special touch controls, and both the "Deep Freeze" and "Bookworm" add-on packs will come with the game. It's a game that's difficult to describe as there's a lot going on at once. Here's a trailer for the desktop version to show you a taste of what to expect:..

'Impulse GP' Review - Crotch Rocket

'Impulse GP' Review - Crotch Rocket

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July 28th, 2015 1:00 PM EDT by Nathan Reinauer in $2.99, 4.5 stars, Games, Racing, Reviews, Universal
$2.99 Buy Now

Do you remember what you were doing three and a half years ago? I do. I was posting a thread on the TA forums cursing the gods for not giving us a halfway decent WipEout-like on iOS. It got no replies, probably because it wasn’t that big of a problem in the grand scheme of things. You can read my embarrassingly whiny rant here, if you feel like wanting to punch someone in the mouth. Misguided Gameloft hate and hilariously outdated Fling references aside, I think what Young Nathan was getting at was the frustration of how big the App Store seemed and how few of those apps were actually great. It’s a problem that still persists...

'Red Game Without a Great Name' Hits the App Store

July 28th, 2015 12:00 PM EDT by Eli Hodapp in News
$2.99 Buy Now

What happens when you apparently dump all of your creativity into a game and leave nothing left over for the actual title of said video game? It'd seem the answer is the aptly named Red Game Without a Great Name [$2.99] which hit the App Store last night. It is really red, and that name is definitely not great, but it'll be interesting to see if that matters or not. In the game, you play as a mechanical steampunk bird on the mission of delivering secret messages, controlled using touch and swipe mechanics to make your bird warp all over the screen while you try to avoid dying over and over and over...

'Pac-Man Championship Edition DX' Review - If It Ain't Broke, Make it Faster and Add Bombs

Screwing up Pac-Man Championship Edition DX [$4.99] on mobile seemed like it would be difficult. All Namco would have to do is to basically port the game over, maybe make some tweaks to help it work better on mobile with touch controls, as the ludicrous speed of the console and PC version might not work so well with most people using swipes to move. Maybe throw in iCloud and support for both iCade and MFi controllers, and you've got yourself a five-star package. Namco almost did screw this up with a wacky free-to-play version of the game based around levels and energy timers, but thankfully they came to their senses and decided to just drop the game with minimal mobile tweaks on the App Store as a premium game. The world is better for it...

As free to play has become more and more of a thing on the App Store, developers from all over the world have been trying to figure out how to crack the nut of making IAP systems that feel "fair," while still making enough money to continue making games. For Strange Flavour, this meant implementing a system they called "Play Nice.". Cliffsnotes basically amount to they structured their games as free to play titles, but with a maximum spending potential. Here's how they explained it when it was first announced:..

Massive Open-World Space Exploration Game 'Prevail' Rises from the Ashes and Should See Release in 2015

File this under "Best news I've heard so far this year" - the massive open-world interplanetary exploration and combat game Prevail, which was originally announced nearly 4 years ago and had gone deadly silent for the past 18 months, is amazingly enough not dead and in fact it's (supposedly) coming out sometime this year. (Headexplode.gif) Now, gather 'round children as I tell you the tale of Prevail…..

'Skill Wave' is a Fun One-Tap Game from 'Hex Brutal' Publisher Appsolute Games

Appsolute Games is publishing titles on an almost weekly basis now, with last week seeing the neat Hex Brutal [Free]. This week, they present Skill Wave, a one-tap game that blends together elements of zig-zag games and shoot 'em ups. You control a yellow dot that you can make go right by tapping and holding on the screen, with it going left automatically when you let go. Essentially, you're trying to keep it from hitting any spikes or obstacles that get in the way, kind of like a vertical Jetpack Joyride [Free] or other similar games...

deltaDNA, a game analytics firm which provides products that bring together many ad network SDKs for developers, has just introduced an ad platform called SmartAds, that has an interesting hook for developers and players. Basically, it's designed to segment players in to those responsive to in-app purchases and those responsive to ads. Realize that only a small fraction of players spend money in games to begin with, the numbers varying but generally that the whales dominate things. ..

This puzzle/adventure game from Bandai Namco is far from innovative but attaching average game play to a beloved franchise is a sure way to climb the charts. In Dragon Ball Z: Dokkan Battle [Free], you play as an unnamed fighter working to avert the disaster of an "expanding dimensional distortion." Trunks and King Kai direct you on your quest, forwarding the plot and offering battle advice. The story gets a bit convoluted from there, especially when trying to explain why the Z-Fighters are battling each other...

Oh man, Bitcoin Billionaire [Free], what happened man? You swooped into my life in November of last year and I was absolutely obsessed with you for days and days on end. I clicked, I auto-clicked, I bought countless useless items for my crappy apartment and then… it all came to an end, and I craved more. And you promised that more was coming! But that was a long time ago, and I don't know, I feel different now, I guess. Can it still work between us? Do you really have anything more to offer me? The answer, apparently, is a resounding YES as we've just got word that Bitcoin Billionaire is set to get a massive update on August 6th that triples the amount of content in the game...

New 'Mos Speedrun 2' Gameplay Trailer Released

One of my all-time favorite platformers on ANY gaming system is Physmo's Mos Speedrun [$0.99]. Launched in 2011, its focus on speedrunning levels and masterful touch controls had me playing each of its levels dozens if not hundreds of times over and over, hoping to find new routes and techniques that would let me shave just that little bit of time off my final score. I was obsessed, and I loved it. So it should be no surprise that when Physmo began teasing Mos Speedrun 2 with screen shots in June of last year, I was pretty excited. Things were relatively quiet for a while after that, until this past January when we got a proper look at Mos Speedrun 2 with an excellent gameplay trailer. Well, things have been a bit quiet again since then, but now we've got ourselves another new look at Mos Speedrun 2 thanks to this new trailer...

'You Against Me' is a Game Center Multiplayer Game Releasing This Week

If you're looking for another neat head-to-head Game Center game in the vein of Kindo [$1.99], You Against Me should scratch that itch. It's a numbers-based card game, where you and an opponent take turns playing from a hand of 5 number cards, laying it down on a board. If your card is on a number, it's yours. If you get a number surrounded on one side by other numbers, it's locked and can't be played again. After each play, you draw from a pile of two cards, one being your color, the other being your opponent's. You can take your color card knowing that it's that number, or you can draw your opponent's card to prevent them from playing it, though you'll get a random number based on its card back instead...

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