iPhone Game Reviews

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Revisiting Ten First-Class iPhone Games

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The App Store is  dumped with 15000 apps. So, earlier this week, I navigated my nine home-screens and listed the best of the best of the games I bought. Want a peek? Read on.

Hero of Sparta [$5.99]

Hero of SpartaHero of Sparta brought the most of what had been anticipated in an iPhone game – stunning graphics. As the name suggests, you play a Spartan king who has do his job – killing monsters and hellish creatures. The one thing that satisfied me most was the control scheme. Instead of an accelerometer control scheme, which has been incorporated in many complex games like this and failed (miserably!), Hero of Sparta has great touch controls, in which you use an on-screen control stick and a simple few buttons to perform the many stunts in the game. Hero of Sparta is now available on the App Store for $5.99 – one great bargain.

Rolando [$5.99]

Rolando Ngmoco brought LocoRoco (PSP) fans an amazing equivalent for the iPhone. In Rolando, you control a bunch of balls (dunno what else to call them),    across various stages, involving many physics-based puzzles, or otherwise just stages of pure fun. Rolando is coupled with beautiful cartoonish and eye-captivating graphics. In the game, the Rolandos quite often speak to you, addressing you as Finger, and comment about lots of things around them. You’ll begin to feel so personal with them, that you’ll genuinely feel sorry if you lose one of the Rolandos. Especially because of its now lowered price of $5.99 for $9.99, Rolando deserves an immediate buy.

PapiJump [Free]

PapiJumpI’m warning you, PapiJump is an extremely addictive game. Its amazingly simple concept plunges you in hours and hours of gameplay. PapiJump puts you in control of a Mr.Papi, a red smiley face, who is jumping eternally, on green platforms, going up. No specific aim – your goal is to get the highest amount of points possible, which you can then post on the online scoreboards. My highest score is 50000, which is actually quite low. But still, I’m challenging you to beat my score! Don’t be a coward – download the free game now and try to beat my score.

Dr. Awesome [$0.99]

Dr. AwesomeDr. Awesome, which really is awesome, converts your iPhone into a surgical instrument. Use your surgical instrument to destroy the cells containing the viruses, and win when you have cut down 75% of the cell. But – you know – all cells look almost the same. The game seems to get somewhat repetitive in a while. But for its extremely low price of $0.99, Dr. Awesome is certainly a good game to buy.

Space Ninja [$2.99]

Space NinjaLots of space shooters now-a-days, including non-iPhone shooters, invlove a lot of dodging bullets in addition to the insane amount of shooting madly everywhere. Developer Yose Widjaja, has brought out only the former in his space shooter – Space Ninja. No shooting – only dodging. Yose also hasn’t forgotten to include the insane amount of insanity that is a must for a traditional ahooter. Yeah – you have to dodge bullets by the skin of your teeth. The game has an added slow motion effect, which you cannot live without. So crazy is the amount of bullets you’ll encounter, is that you’ll enable slow-motion throughout every level after the 10th level, out of the game’s 40 levels. For $2.99, Space Ninja is the craziest bargain you’ll ever find on the App Store.

Platypus [$4.99]

PlatypusPlatypus really couldn’t get more fast-paced. Platypus is just another shooter, with an added cartoonish feel. In Platypus you control your F-27 Platypus fighter plane and defend peaceful Mungola from the invading Collastropolans (did you get that into your mouth?). All that can be said is that Platypus is just another really great shooter, with all the amount of action you’d ever want, all at it’s reasonable price of $4.99.

Edge [$5.99]

EdgeIn Edge, you are put in control of a cube, which you move in a 3D isometric environment. Edge really stands out as a totally unique game, which really cannot be classified in a certain genre. Combined with really superb gameplay, decent length and really good sound, Edge certainly deserves $5.99 from your purse (or would it be your credit card?). See the review here for more on the game.

Tap Tap Revenge [Free]

LabyrinthTap Tap Revenge is really a great blend of music and gaming, and will immediately appeal to lovers of both. As the name should suggest, you tap your finger to the beats. Best of all, this great game comes free, and is certainly worthy of an immediate download.

Labyrinth [$6.99]

LabyrinthLabyrinth simulates a real labyrinth, using the power of the accelerometer. Labyrinth is one great game that demonstrates the quality of the iPhone’s accelerometer in full glory, becuase the ball moves at the slightest tilt. Be careful not to let your hand twitch!

Enigmo [$1.99]

EnigmoWatch that brain, because it might burst, if and when you buy this game. Enigmo is one of the very few games that can be called real puzzlers. In Enigmo, you have to fill a bucket with water – and for that you should guide water droplets dripping from a tap to the bucket using various contraptions such as platforms, bouncers, accelerators and much more. Yes – there are bouncers, which means that the water droplets don’t behave like in the real world – they bounce. For $1.99, Enigmo is really an amazing bargain.

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Written by kvikram

January 26, 2009 at 10:19 am

Blue Attack! promises a great shooting experience

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Developer: John Kooistra
Price: $1.99 [Buy]

So is Blue Attack! just another shooter? No! Earlier in November, John Kooistra released Blue Defense!, and now follows its sequel called Blue Attack!, featuring the Blue Attacksame war between the red and blue forces.

You control a blue ship based on a carrier, which you must defend. In such as is the case, you have to navigate away from the carrier frequently, locate and destroy thr red forces. On your mission, the game allows you to adopt wingmen, which constantly follow you in a chosen formation, adding to your firepower. Of course, the game isn’t just plain shooting, because using bombs and force blasts also form a major part of the game.

Blue Attack! has both accelerometer and touch controls, which both work beautifully. Unlike traditional shooters though, Blue Attack! lets you navigate your ship in all directions, rather than on a left-to-right movement idea.

The single best part of the game is the ship upgrade system. As you constantly advance, you can upgrade your ship with loads and loads of upgrades. At the end of each level, you earn resources, which you can spend later on upgrades. For example, you can buy more bombs and ships (lives). Some other upgrades are those to increase your ship’s speed, acceleration, handling and firepower.

Combined with a great price, fantastic gameplay, good sound and high replayability, Blue Attack! is a highly recommended game.

Controls: 8/10
Graphics: 8/10
Sound: 8/10
Gameplay: 9/10
Value for money: 9/10

Overall: 8.5/10

Written by kvikram

January 24, 2009 at 1:39 pm

Wordsworth – Review

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Developer: 99Games
Price: $1.99 [Buy] (now on sale for $0.99)

Wordsworth is just another word game to join the party, and is now among the top 100 apps in the US App Store. WordsworthWordsworth puts lots of letters on the board, and you have to join consecutive letters to form a word. This is very much a clone of Bookworm, a PC game from RealArcade, and if you’ve already played that, rhis should surely appeal to you.

WordsWorth is a challenging, fun, engaging and an addictive word game, with the perfect ingredients to loosen up. Trace new words as you link letters into words in the library using Multi-Touch interface. Create longer words with rare letters to earn hefty points. Stumble upon new rewards and challenges along the way. ‘Shake’ if you cannot locate a word, of course at a penalty. Watch out for timed tiles that threaten to explode your library! Customize the game to suit your level of intellect. Go on to earn whopping scores and become a whiz with words!

Wordsworth is not exactly a fast-paced word game. Rather, it is a very relaxing game, where you just pass through the levels by forming new words. The only point where you actually lose the game is when you are not able to use one of the red letters, which you have to use within a specific period of time. It is only in the later levels that this starts becoming quite a challenge.

To sum it up, Wordsworth is actually awesome, and is much better than Scrabble, wspecially as this costs just $2. And if you’re rich enough to lose $2 today (was I just offensive?), this game would surely be the most valuable thing you could lose it on. Before you buy the game, you could also try the lite version.

Controls : Eliminated
Graphics: Eliminated
Sound: Eliminated
Gameplay : 9/10
Value for money : 9/10

Overall : 9/10

Written by kvikram

January 23, 2009 at 11:58 am

Rocking Free Games of all time on the App Store

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So what are the really superb free games on the App Store that have been released from time immemorial? (or at least since the App Store came into existence!). There are some games I’ve really loved. I’ve picked five of the best of them for you.

PapiJump [Get it]

An amazingly simple game, PapiJump is one of the most addictive free games that have ever hit the App Store.

PapiJump is a simple but addictive jumping action game! Mr.Papi (red ball guy) wants to go up higher, is jumping eternally.

After PapiJump became a great hit, Sunflat (PapiJump’s devloper) released PapiPole and PapiRiver. But PapiJump still remains the best.

Space Deadbeef [Get it]

Space Deadbeef is greater than any other space shooter, with controls which stands out in unique glory. It does have its reason for being free – playing different levels is like playing the same level, only at different difficulty levels. Oh, why did I even mention that? This is one great free game that deserves an immediate download.

Cube Runner [Get it]

Go through an endless path scattered with cubes all over the place, in your ‘ship’, a single arrow. This amazing 3D game has really fast-paced gameplay, where you have to dodge cubes by the skin of your teeth! I probably flopped at explaining the game, or even if I didn’t, get it now and see for yourself how great the game is.

Rick Rocketson (Free) [Get it]

Rick Rocketson was made to promote Rick Rocketson Pro, but this can be considered a unique game in itself. Rick Rocketson, a 2D platformer inspired by Amiga, a retro game console, is better than any 2D game for the iPhone I’ve come across so far. I, as a retro fan, find this game really enjoyable. If you are too, or even if you are not, downloading this game will surely satisfy you.

Jellycar [Get it]

Jellycar features one of the most innovative concept for any 2D game. Move around your car of jelly in a 2D environment, also made of jelly, and navigate to your destination across various obstacles and traps. Your car may be squished and squashed here and there, but be careful not to fully crush it!

Conclusion

Since all these games are free, what reason do you have not to download these games?! Get these games now!

Written by kvikram

January 20, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Posted in App Store Reviews, Free

‘Archibald’s Advenures’ 2D Platformer

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Developer: Rake In Grass
Price: $7.99 [Buy]

Rake in Grass (where do they get these names?!) has come out with Archibald’s Adventures, a 2D platformer closely comparable with Rick Rocketson Pro. The game is enormously long and is loaded with features.

Archibald‘s Adventures offers gameplay mixed of action and puzzle elements with gradually rising complexity. The player starts as a boy on skateboard, but soon he will roll in robotic vehicle capable of riding o walls and ceilings, fly on jet device or remotely control mysterious floating bubble able to switch distant mechanism or transport objects.

Archie and crazy Professor Klumpfus are stuck in the professor’s mansion. The latest experiment of the goofy scientist went all wrong, and weird lifeforms escaped from their containment. Now a paranoid central computer locked both heroes up!

Each 2D game like this one manages to come out with a unique concept, to avoid monotony. The game does away with accelerometer controls and features on-screen controls, which (don’t!) work well. Archibald’s Adventures sometimes puts you furiously in great frustration, when you have figured out the exact solution to a level but you still can’t manage the controls to get things working right. Accelerometer controls are Archiegood in some games, and not in other games. Providing an option for switching to accelerometer controls would have been a wise decision.

When I said the game is enormously long, I might have misleaded you. Each level is very short and you can get through it within a minute or so. The only extra time you’ll take would be because of the controls’ failure.

Some features as listed by the developer,

– Go through 114 levels in this mind blowing action puzzle platform game
– Experience innovative gameplay with many unique features of the hero: transportation of objects, riding on walls and ceilings, flying with a jet armchair and more
– Use your wit and fast reaction to avoid nasty dangers of the mad scientist’s mansion
– Use the professor’s device pod to climb the walls or his artificial intelligence matter to solve riddles
– Encounter lots of weird and funny lifeforms running loose in the levels!

I was expecting one good arcade game, and was deceived by the beautiful screenshots. At $8, the game is surely overpriced. $4 would what this game would be worth. See the gameplay video for a closer look.

Controls: 5/10
Graphics: 7/10
Sound: 6/10
Gameplay
: 6/10
Value for money: 5/10

Overall: 5.5/10

Written by kvikram

January 17, 2009 at 10:38 am

Posted in App Store Reviews

App Store sees ‘SlotZ Racer’

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Developer: Freeverse
Price: On sale for 72 hours at $0.99 [Buy]

Slotz Racer, previewed at Macworld 2009, has finally hit the App Store, featuring an intuitive concept and superb gameplay.

SlotZ Racer lets players race against the computer or friends; a unique control system allows up to 4 people to race on a single SlotZ RaceriPhone! Features an intuitive track editor to give the player the ultimate freedom to design their very own courses, and offers a wide selection of cars to race. Compete for laps or against the clock in Time Trials, drive an endurance race, (with simulated days and nights), or play a ‘Quick Race’ to jump straight into the action. The game also includes unlockable new circuits, cars, track locations and championship challenges to keep the action exciting and fresh!

SlotZ Racer is the first racing game of its kind. All you have to do is accelerate and brake, using a single button. The car goes by itself along its lane on the track. Accelerate too fast on the curves and you’ll be sent flying off the track, only to be reset on it again! The game is really fast-paced and quite difficult, as you advance in the game. Like in the developer’s description, the game allows four players to play the same race on the same phone, with four buttons on the four corners of the screen.

I really love the great new concept. The game is complete with fantastic gameplay and also an additional track editor. See this gameplay video for a closer look, as posted at Touch Arcade.

The game is now on sale for 72 hours at $0.99. After that it will raise to $2.99. Don’t Wait!

Controls: 9/10
Graphics: 7/10
Sound: 7/10
Gameplay: 9/10
Value for money: 9/10

Overall: 8/10

Written by kvikram

January 16, 2009 at 11:18 am

Posted in App Store Reviews

Rick Rocketson Pro – Review

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Released Jan 10, 2009
Developer: Liquid Air Lab
Price: $1.99 [Buy]

Rick Rocketson Pro, a retro-style side-scrolling game that has hit the App Store. This is a development of the free version of Rick Rocketson [App Store], containing five levels.rick-rocketson

The space hero and all around good guy Rick Rocketson was rocketing home from the nefarious planet Omicron Nebula. Then, suddenly the evil and vicious space pirates of the asteroid Blob 5 shot him down! Rick Rocketson must escape or the entire galaxy is doomed!

Fight the furious space hedgehogs by throwing acidogefilus-grenades to them and shoot evil space pirates of the asteroid Blob 5 with laserblaster to survive complex level design loaded with traps, lava and other hazards! Don’t forget to pick up some health and ammunition packages!

Those who are already familiar with the ’80’s and ’90’s Amiga-style gameplay should find this game pretty interesting. The game also has the old sound tracks, bringing back the old days in a perfect way.

The game does away with ‘traditional’ accelerometer controls and incorporates an on-screen gamepad, much like a retro-game console controller.  They work rather well, but take some time getting used to and is not the best thing a bout the game.

I find this game quite enjoyable, as a particular retro fan. I wouldn’t mind in the slightest to pay $2 for this. This game is certainly better than many such games that have hit the App Store so far. See the video for a closer look.


Controls: 7/10
Graphics: 8/10
Sound: 8/10
Gameplay: 9/10
Value for money: 10/10

Overall: 8.4/10



Written by kvikram

January 15, 2009 at 2:16 pm

Posted in App Store Reviews