This year Apple handled the Apple Design Awards a little different from previous years, and honestly, it’s probably for the better. Previously, the Apple Design Awards took place after the keynote on the same stage. Turnout was often mediocre as members of the media were off powering away at covering everything announced during the keynote and developers similarly were obsessed with pouring through all the newly released betas. This time around, the awards were given out in a intimate setting with the winners and a few Apple executives. Five objectively fantastic games took home Apple Design Awards, and honestly, I’d be a little shocked if you didn’t already own most, if not all of these, if you’re a regular here on TouchArcade.
Blackbox, Free Early last year, the beta for Blackbox kicked off in our forums, and community members seemed to love this obscure puzzle game. I think a game like Blackbox is better experienced knowing nothing about it, so if the above trailer at all looks interesting, just download it. In the game you’re tasked with solving all sorts of puzzles in incredibly ingenious ways that utilize all the different inputs of your iOS device. What does that mean, exactly? I’m not going to spoil it. If you get stuck, head into the thread in our forums for some hints.
Splitter Critters, $2.99 When we first saw Splitter Critters at PAX, the discussion surrounding it was something along the lines of, “This game is either going to fail, or it’ll win an Apple Design Award." It seems, for once, we’re on the good timeline where this well-deserving game got the recognition it deserves. It’s played by making slices on the screen, then dragging the game world to allow you to move your Lemmings-like characters back to their spaceship. Check out the trailer, and for much (much) more on how the game plays out, take a look at our review.
Mushroom 11, $4.99 The release of Mushroom 11 was a little strange, as it launched on Steam first, but from day one was one of those PC games that obviously would be way, way better on touch devices. Sure enough, when it finally hit the App Store, that turned out to be true. In the game you’re moving a giant fungus around by shoving it with your finger. It’s a super basic gameplay mechanic that the game beautifully explores in totally unexpected ways. For more, dig into the thread in our forums.
Old Man's Journey, $4.99 We’ve talked about it at length on our podcast, Carter gushed over it in his review, and everyone else seems to be loving Old Man’s Journey. If you haven’t played it yet, it’s another one of those games that feel like it really plays best on mobile. You control an old man, taking a journey, and that path is made by you interacting with the game world dragging different layers to make a path. It’s as much of an experience as it is a game, and shouldn’t be missed.
Severed, $6.99 Severed had a weird history, as it was announced for mobile, then became a PS Vita exclusive, the was re-announced for mobile, and finally released. The game combines Infinity Blade-like swiping combat with what feels like a full-featured adventure game with a story that’s fantastic and an aesthetic that’s hard to beat. There’s loads of things in the game that make nods to Zelda, which is always a welcome addition. For more details on Severed, read our full review.