Game of the Month, August 2012: Bastion

As far as months on the App Store go, August was a doozy. It seemed like big-name games were coming out every week, and we had to struggle to make time to play them all. But only one can take the crown, and this month it’s Bastion.

Bastion is an action RPG from developer Supergiant Games. They first released it last year on Xbox Live Arcade and PC. Now they’ve brought it to iPad, and it’s a show-stopper. They ported over the entire game, with all the beautiful art, music, character customization and narration. They even came up with two excellent control schemes to get you in the shoes of “The Kid” and start hacking away at enemies as quickly as possible.

The graphics are lush and gorgeous– especially on the new iPad– and the gameplay is as fun as it is deep. You explore an oddly colorful post-apocalyptic world, trying to bring peace back to the land. All the while, one of the characters you meet narrates your adventures as you play, and he always has something interesting to say. It’s one of those games that the more you play, the more you want to play. And when you finally beat the game, there’s a whole “new game+” mode to get you back in the action. If you only buy one game this month, make it Bastion.

Our runner-up for Game of the Month is Horn, a very different sort of action RPG that takes place in a very different beautiful, decimated world. Here you play as a boy who wakes up to find every person and animal in his village transformed into giant monsters. So you run around, solving environmental puzzles and engaging in tense one-on-one fights with the beasts, trying to turn them back into whatever they were before the catastrophic event. It’s a long, beautiful adventure that’s well worth taking.

Congratulations to Supergiant Games and Phosphor Games for making this month’s top titles! Be sure to also check out the rest of the month’s Must Haves: Alien Breed, Trigger Fist, Kid Vector, Puzzle Craft, Organ Trail: Director’s Cut, Jack Lumber, The World Ends With You, and Mikey Shorts.