Five to Watch: Friday, January 8

Now that the holidays have died down, we arrive at a point where there is little new content dropping onto the App Store. This week we focus in on just five games that may be worth checking out.

NBA Hotshot

Price: $0.99

In the wake of Skee-Ball’s overwhelming success, Freeverse has released their second arcade game, NBA Hotshot. This basketball shooter has two modes: the classic, timed version and a precision twist that allows you to keep playing until you miss three shots. Awards and Plus+ are also included, just like in the last game. A full review is on the way.

Fighting Fantasy: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain

Price: $2.99

Fighting Fantasy was one of the first Choose Your Own Adventure-style book series, leading to many classics. Most notable is The Warlock of Firetop Mountain. This story and game hybrid sends you on an adventure to seek out a powerful warlock’s loot. The text is witty and immersive, while the dice-rolling battles provide a nice twist. If you are on a 3GS, you may want to wait for the already-submitted update to launch before buying as it fixes a crash bug, but otherwise this looks like a classic.

Parcel Panic

Price: $2.99

Crazy Taxi is one of the most memorable games for the Sega Dreamcast, but since it isn’t currently available on the App Store, Parcel Panic will have to fill that niche. Combining stunt physics with racing between checkpoints, the goal is to deliver packages to the inhabitants of Tapiti Island. An open world and amazing 3D graphics with 3GS optimizations really help Parcel Panic stand out from other driving games.

2012 Zombies vs Aliens

Price: $0.99

As much fun as Trenches was, it may already have a successor. 2012 Zombies vs Aliens allows you to play as either side in a battle to control Earth. The soldier-summoning gameplay, along with seven unit types, three bomb options, and 56 levels per campaign, held our interest.

Mondrian

Price: $2.99

Simple yet complex, Mondrian is very unique. With the guidance of the ghost of the artist Piet Mondrian, you must go around the world and restore his paintings. This is done by sliding a variety of different colored blocks from one place to another and creating a pattern. If you take too many moves, Mondrian has an outburst, which is always amusing.