I have a lot of respect for iconic App Store developers Halfbrick Studios attempting to step out of their comfort zone as of late. Of course, the App Store isn’t a particularly forgiving place for companies that stick to the same old holding pattern with their releases (not mentioning any names here), and developers like Supercell who keep on striving to mix things up seem to achieve the holy grail of sustained iOS success. Whether it’s a conscious decision or one forced by the nature of the beast, Halfbrick’s foray into AR with last year’s Shadows Remain ($1.99) and the eclectic array of games released over the past few months underlines the Australian studio’s determination not to stand still, and Raskulls Online, their latest upcoming App Store effort, continues this pattern. As the title suggests, Raskulls Online is an online, real-time multiplayer puzzle game, and appears to be an interesting grid-based take on the strategy genre. While it’s still early days for Raskulls Online, Halfbrick are currently looking for any eager beta testers to help the title get one step closer to a worldwide release.
Keen Halfbrick fans may have noticed that a game with the same Raskulls moniker was released on the Xbox 360 back in 2010. While this first entry in the series was more of a action game, the iOS Raskulls Online takes the same colorful universe into a more strategic package. While Raskulls Online serves as Halfbrick’s first tentative steps into the PvP puzzle genre on the App Store, it’s easy to see the parallels with the aforementioned Supercell’s Clash Royale (Free). With the description mentioning unlocking chests to upgrade troops, crafting gems, building a battle deck and winning trophies against opponents, Raskulls Online wears its influences quite boldly on its sleeve, but if the puzzle action is enjoyable, there’s always more room for another solid entry in the genre. If you want to help Halfbrick try and recapture the magic that made Fruit Ninja (Free) and Jetpack Joyride (Free) such a success, sign up for Raskulls Online’s beta testing phase on our forums.