AppSpy’s video review of the retro-style sword-swinging platformer Sword of Xolan praises the game for its precise controls and hearty character, though the overall experience is reportedly a wee bit short.
Amazon is now bringing its games to iOS, and its latest release, from developer Wayforward Games, is Til Morning’s Light, a mystery game that’s reportedly not bad but not great. From Pocket Gamer’s 7 out of 10 review:
There are times when this feels sort of like a My First Resident Evil game. The puzzles aren’t particularly macabre, but they involve finding the right keys for the right doors, sliding blocks around, and combining items together.
And it’s a perfectly pleasant experience. There’s quite a lot of wandering around, but everything you need to find is highlighted in the gloom of the mansion, and the puzzles are never at point-and-click levels of obscurity.
Heroes and Castles 2 is a console-sized game squeezed down to a mobile platform. So it’s good, but it doesn’t quite fit, exactly. That’s according to Touch Arcade, whose 4 out of 5 star review says:
If you’re the kind of person who is willing to make sacrifices for console-style gaming on mobile, and doesn’t care if a game is a particularly good fit for mobile, then you’ll enjoy Heroes and Castles 2. If you need something that can be enjoyed in short bursts or can be dropped at a moment’s notice, if a lack of commitment is a feature not a bug for you, then I’d probably stay away from this. But please, whatever you do: play this on your iPad or whatever you’d consider your secondary device compared to the phone you use. You’ll enjoy the proceedings a lot more.
From Insomniac Games, the makers of Ratchet & Clank and Sunset Overdrive comes Digit & Dash, a mobile game that’s quite fun, according to Gamezebo’s review.
Overall, Digit & Dash is a solid, challenging, reflex-based game that is sure to challenge players of all experience levels. It’s just difficult enough to keep me from blazing through it, but it provides some nice safety nets that catch you not too far from your fall when you fail. And you will fail.
Do you enjoy bouncing on the tops of active volcanos? If so, you’ll love KANO, a game that lets you do just that. From 148Apps’s 4 out of 5 star review:
KANO is, quite simply, an extremely well-made game. The colors are vibrant, the style is impressive, and the sound effects have real impact. I mean actual impact. The noise you’ll hear when you manage to land a bounce dead-center quickly becomes a short-term goal for every single spin. It’s practically Pavlovian.
The latest in a loooooooong line of SpongeBob games to hit the App Store, SpongeBob’s Game Frenzy is a WarioWare-like title that’s full of micro-games. From Gamezebo’s 4 out of 5 star review:
This is exactly the sort of game I could see myself playing with my friends, back when I was nine; sitting around the living room, watching everyone try to get the farthest without messing up. I would have had a blast with SpongeBob Game Frenzy, and as it stands, grown-up me had a bit of fun with the game too.
Just don’t expect me to start watching the show. I had the game muted in a matter of minutes. There’s no way I could make it through a full episode listening to these characters speak.
Now 148Apps has rung in with its opinion on the game that has you hunt tofu instead of wildlife. Turns out they like it pretty well. From their 3.5 out of 5 star review:
There’s a fairly aggressive energy system in place that slows your progress, but really, Tofu Hunter isn’t a game to play for a long time anyhow. It’s a form of brief entertainment and stress relief, rather than anything to think too deeply about. For that reason it’s fine, if eventually forgettable.
If you like racing games and don’t mind a grind — albeit an addictive one — this is a game you’ll want to check out. From Pocket Gamer’s 7 out of 10 review:
Nitro Nation is designed to make you into a slobbering addict, and it does it very well. It’s almost dangerously simple to pick up and play, and that desire to shave seconds off your time becomes habit-forming in a few plays.
It’s not a racing game. It’s barely even a game at all, if you’re going to be really critical. But it still manages to bite-sized slices of fun and thrills, and sometimes that’s all you want.
Ire: Blood Memory is an action RPG that offers a pretty hardcore challenge, despite being free-to-play. Touch Arcade’s review praises it highly for its depth of content and gratifying battle system.
While there are issues with the menus, guides, and the occasional technical hiccups, this game is definitely a refreshing addition to the App Store and a game made for those who would call themselves “hardcore gamers.”
The original Fragger was a grenade-tossing blast. The sequel is out now, and 148Apps finds it not quite up to the level of the original, which released five years ago, by the way. From the review:
If I have one primary complaint with Fragger 2, it’s that it doesn’t use its most interesting features often enough. Gravity puzzles are usually a one or two-step process, and the propelled explosives are usually just there to say “hey, you see that guy who seems impossible to hit? Use this.” Also, for a physics-based game itseems awfully contrived how levels have very specific solutions that don’t really allow for much experimentation.
If you’ve been paying attention to iOS gaming for a while you may remember the hullabaloo around the original Smurf Village game, in which kids bankrupted their parents by buying endless amounts of Smurf Berries. That game now has a town-building sequel. From Gamezebo’s 3.5 out of 5 star review:
Smurfs’ Village and the Magical Meadow doesn’t offer the massive amount of content you might find in The Simpsons: Tapped Out, nor does it have the same level of humor or charm (though the Smurfs do have some amusing interactions in the aforementioned cinema scenes). Still, if you’re a fan of the franchise, or you have a youngster who loves the little blue gnomes, playing Magical Meadow is certainly preferable to, say, having tea and crumpets with Gargamel.
The classic game Snake has been updated for mobile with Snake Rewind. However, according to 148Apps’ review of the game, Snake probably should have stayed in the past.
What doesn’t work so well for Snake Rewind is its control scheme. There’s a choice of swipes or taps but neither entirely succeeds, causing you to make mistakes that aren’t your fault. This is what’s going to ensure that Snake Rewind isn’t a game that’s quite as wonderfully nostalgic as you were hoping.
Cooking Mama is cooking up a storm as usual. This time, she’s back on mobile with Cooking Mama Let’s Cook!, which Gamezebo says is a good title for curious young chefs.
Cooking Mama Let’s Cook continues the tradition of being a gesture-based cooking simulator. It’s very cute and adorable, but also very easy. The game is clearly designed for little kids who have a budding interest in what goes on in the kitchen, and for that audience, it’s pretty much ideal.
The original Knights of Pen & Paper was pretty amazing. The sequel does its best, but comes up a little short. But don’t hold that against it. From Gamezebo’s 4 out of 5 star review:
Knights of Pen and Paper II tries hard to recapture the magic of its predecessor by simultaneously reveling in and poking fun at RPG tropes, but while there’s still plenty to admire, it’s not quite as engrossing as the original.
The zombie-themed goat physics game Goat Simulator GoatZ is not a bad game, says Pocket Gamer, but it hasn’t quite lived up to its endless potential. From their 6 out of 10 review:
GoatZ, then, is essentially more Goat Simulator, but smaller and with a new layout and an end-of-the-world zombie apocalypse theme. That’s either the biggest recommendation or the biggest warning I can give you.
Castle defense games come and go, but Heroes and Castles 2 is here to stay. At least that’s how 148Apps views it in their 4.5 out of 5 star review.
It has this interesting sense of progression that makes every game feel like you’re accomplishing something, whether it’s taking over a new outpost so that you can start using priests or fighting through a few waves to save up for an upgrade. It can also be played in bite-sized chunks or for extended sessions, whichever you’re in the mood for, without losing any of its appeal.
Classic PC dungeon crawler Legend of Grimrock has been ported to PC. According to Touch Arcade’s five-star review of the title, it’s a heck of an experience.
For those of you who are familiar, this port doesn’t disappoint. I never got the chance to play the PC version, but I am convinced I have lost nothing in the translation. If you only play one dungeon delving game this summer, I feel bad for you, but it had better be Grimrock.
You’ve probably been in the market for a decent jousting game on iOS for a while, right? Look no further: Knights & Snails is the game you seek. From 148Apps’s 4 out of 5 star review:
Essentially, players line up armies of knights into lanes, and the knights in those lanes face off with opposing knights. Once a joust is initiated players then play a mini-game where they have to tapFlappy Bird-style to try and land a meter marker inside the green, ideal portion of a meter. The outcomes of these jousts depends on the stats of each knight, the player’s performance in the mini-game, and a little bit of luck. The ultimate goal is to earn more points in a battle than the opponent by the time the final round is over.
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