This week is lead by a surprisingly good game that I never would’ve expected to be as great as it turned out to be if I hadn’t tried it. Dodo Master has a weird name and an icon that doesn’t give you any idea what the game is about… But, that seems to be the way that most of the true App Store gems work out: Totally awesome games that you never expect.
Here’s the best games we reviewed this week:
Dodo Master Pocket, $0.99 [HD] [Review] – As mentioned, these sorts of games are what make the App Store so awesome. Here we have the first game released by a (seemingly) new iOS developer and it knocked our socks off. Dodo Master is a platformer that nails absolutely everything that a good platformer should have, with great graphics, tight controls, and fun gameplay. Also, it’s available at an insane price, which again, is one of those things that could only happen on the App Store.
Almightree: The Last Dreamer, $0.99 [Review] – Nearly a year since we’ve last seen or heard from it, Crescent Moon Games’ Almightree: The Last Dreamer made some waves back then with aspirations of being a “Zelda-inspired” 3D puzzle game. As far as actual execution is concerned, there isn’t much here in terms of Zelda-inspiration anymore, but what we’re left yet is an impressive 3D puzzle platformer. In fact, it’s one of the better 3D puzzlers I’ve played this year, and should be on everyone’s list to check out.
Appointment With FEAR, $5.99 [Review] – If you ever need proof that competition is healthy for the customer, just check out the gamebook scene on mobiles. What started as simple conversions of the text of existing books has spun out into three developers each, in their own way, trying to combine the essence of classic gamebooks with the flexibility that modern technology allows. Written by Steve Jackson and released in 1985, Appointment With F.E.A.R. was the 17th book in the Fighting Fantasy series and the first to use a superhero theme. If you have any love for superhero comics at all, you’re going to have a real blast with Appointment.
Deep Under the Sky, $3.99 [Review] – Deep Under The Sky is a really fascinating game that winds up being a game that’s really fun to play – it has a variety of things to do that are enjoyable to play with in motion, the game is set up to not be frustrating to play, and it makes a lot of its premise by presenting tricky challenges to solve. It does so well at so many things, that while calling a physics-based puzzle-platformer is perhaps the closest approximation of a descriptor for the game, it’s got appeal beyond just what those words mean – and it’s just so gorgeous and well-made that it’s worth checking out no matter what.
Motorsport Manager Mobile, $5.99 [Review] – When I sat down to try Motorsport Manager, I thought it would be the perfect thing to poke at while listening to a podcast. After all, I wouldn’t be expected to drive the cars; I’d be running the biz and laying out the race strategy. A half-hour in, I realized I hadn’t absorbed a word, because I was so fully engaged in growing my fledgeling racing empire and watching my drivers tear up the track. It’s never overwhelming, nor is it too light to maintain interest. Motorsport Manager finds a nice spot in the complexity spectrum wherein it requires frequent decision-making, without ever inducing paralysis by presenting too many options simultaneously.
Spooklands, $0.99 [Review] – Spooklands is so interesting because of its simplicity. As a one-touch arena shooter where firing also controls movement, the game invests in this mechanic, and proves to be an extremely satisfying challenge because of it. And boy is Spooklands tough. Because each shot winds up moving the protagonist around, managing this becomes key. Each shot is crucial in this game.
The Wolf Among Us, Free [Review] – “Cry Wolf,” The Wolf Among Us’ finale, has a problem: it’s an entire episode of denouement, tasked with wrapping up loose ends and answering outstanding questions, usually through exposition. The main mystery driving the series—who brutally decapitated Faith and Lily?—was solved in “A Crooked Mile,” three real-time months ago. Any new information, while interesting, is tied to action that takes place before the events of “Faith.” That doesn’t keep Vivian and Georgie Porgie’s final scene from being the strongest in the episode and one of the best in the series.
Tiny Tower Vegas, Free [Review] – NimbleBit has shown success across a variety of free-to-play titles, but Tiny Tower seems to take the cake as far as popularity is concerned. When Tiny Death Star came out last year, NimbleBit’s formula saw some nice improvements but overall we were left with mostly a sprite refresh with some heavy handed IAP incorporated on top of the base gameplay. With the launch of Tiny Tower Vegas, NimbeBit has retaken the reigns back from Disney Mobile and has made what I consider to be the true sequel to its tower building title. Suffice to say, the mini-game improvements combined with a return to the more friendlier NimbleBit IAP approach makes for another awesome F2P from the developer.
Additionally, we reviewed a bunch of other games this week. As always, you can dig into all of our reviews by clicking here. Alternatively, you can hit up specific scores by using these links: