Anomaly Warzone Earth takes the concept of tower defense games and turns it upside down. Instead of defending yourself from wave after wave of enemies on your iOS device, this time around you are the one making your way through predefined defense structures...read more
"More of the same" is often used as a negative expression. But if you think back at how great the original Cut The Rope was when it was available for your iPhone not even 1 year ago, it's clear that "more of the same" is a positive thing for such a great game...read more
Gameloft's new third person shooter 9mm is often compared to Remedy's Max Payne. In case you're not familiar with Max Payne, it was a celebrated third person shooter released in 2001 with a distinct feature called bullet time: For a limited amount of time you could slow down everything in the game except your ability to aim...read more
When I saw the first trailer for Dream:scape about two months ago, I got very excited about it. It looked like Dream:scape was shaping up nicely to become an incredibly atmospheric adventure with great visuals, that are backed up by the Unreal Engine. Now that the game was released today and I have finished the story, let me tell you how it turned out…read more
Pulse: Volume One is Cipher Prime Studios' 3rd game, and yet again it's all about music. After Auditorium and Fractal, this time it's a rhythm based game. But unlike all the Rock Bands and Guitar Heros out there, you will not have to press fixed buttons with the right timing...read more
If you like great art direction and simple yet elegant gameplay, do yourself a favor and check out this BADLAND trailer. It’s an adventure/puzzle game that’s going to be out on April 4th. It’s one of those games that is created from the ground up with touchscreen input in mind. All you have to do to control it, is to tap the screen. That way you adjust the height of your little, flying fellow. Now, this has the potential to get boring fast, so it needs to be combined with some stellar gameplay mechanics. But judging from what I’ve seen so far from the developers, the level-design is as creative as it is varied. All in all, this game got me really excited to get my hands on it, so April 4th can’t come soon enough.
Simogo, one of my favorite iOS developers, has good news for you all: Their upcoming adventure Year Walk will be available on the App Store on February 21st. But what’s really cool though is that Simogo will also release a Year Walk Companion App for free on the same day! The Year Walk Companion is a guide that will help you delve deeper into the rich universe of Year Walk and get acquainted with all the mysterious creatures and tales that you’ll come across in the game.
Year Walk itself is an adventure game that’s set in 19th century Sweden. You’ll need to uncover what’s going on in the dark woods, where strange and unsettling things seem to be happening. It’s quite a unique concept that focuses very much to create a dense atmosphere and I’d guess that it’s more of an audio-visual experience than a game in the classic sense (much like I’ve categorized Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EP). This is definitely one of the games I’m so far most excited about in 2013 (who needs Infinity Blade Dungeons, after all. Right?!) (…who am I kidding I do still want it anyway…).
But I digress. I’m really curious how exactly the Companion App will tie into the game. Maybe it’ll also give you clues for certain puzzles in the game to help you progress through the story. So, if you’re impatient, you can go ahead and enjoy the story without the need to grind the gears in your brain. Or, in case you want to experience the game without any pre-existing knowledge of the universe, sit tight, finish the game, and then delve deeper into the universe and recap the experience with the Companion App. Whichever way you may chose, if atmospheric mystery experiences are your thing, I’d bet you can’t go wrong either way.
What. The. Fuck. Seriously. What the fuck. Tim Sweeney, founder of Epic Games, just casually announced that they’ve closed Impossible Studios. This is the team responsible for Infinity Blade Dungeons, and therefore the development of the game is now on hold. Again: What the fuck. It’s not like Infinity Blade Dungeons is one of the most anticipated mobile titles and that it was expected to be available already a long time ago.
So, to me there are several things happening here that are “interesting”. First of all, let’s look at Infinity Blade Dungeons. This game was presented on-stage by Apple, undoubtedly to appeal to the hardcore gaming crowd to get them pumped for the new Apple devices. It was a product demo, promising to show us what we would get if we buy that powerful new device. In the past, this would mean that either the game was already out, or that its release was imminent. So that’s why everyone got all excited to get their hands on Infinity Blade Dungeons. Because, well, that’s just how it works when something is teased at an Apple keynote. That’s almost a year ago now. By the end of 2012, Epic said the game would be released sometime “in 2013″. And, as was established at the beginning of this article, it’s now on indefinite hold.
So that was just stating the facts. Now let’s talk about Epic Games themselves. This is where I want to state very clearly upfront that this is pure speculation on my part and that I do not have any information backing up these thoughts I’m having of the “state of Epic Games”. Alright, now that hopefully no one is going to sue me let’s talk about said state of Epic. Currently, something seems to be going wrong at that company. Senior staff who have been working at Epic for ages were leaving (Cliff Bleszinski being arguably the most prominent one). Highly anticipated (and therefore most likely very profitable) games not being released. The rumors about the now infamous Samaritan tech demo actually having been developed as a game, which then faced major problems during development and, because of it, never turned into a real game. The closing of development studios.
Is it just me, or does that sound like things are not so great at Epic Games right now? Of course, there’s still the very strong licensing arm that Epic has. However, with the next console generation around the corner, it’s not clear whether or not the Unreal Engine will also be the major player in a world of Playstation 4s and Xbox720s like it was this generation.
So what do I want to say with this? Not much, really. Just that Epic Games seems to be in a bit of a struggle at the moment. By no means must this mean it’s a struggle for survival. But it’s most definitely a struggle of some sort. Let’s hope they sort it out. I do want me some Infinity Blade Dungeons, after all.
Wooop! Real Racing 3, the successor to one of the greatest, if not the greatest racing game on the App Store is coming to your iPhone and iPad on February 28th. If the trailers are any indication how good this game is going to be, then racing fans are in for a treat. The graphics? Gorgeous. Cars? The real deal. Also, check out the official Real Racing 3 Facebook page. You’ll notice that Turk Turklerrrr.. Donald Faison seems to be digging the game. And if a game is good enough for Turk, it sure as hell is good enough for me!
I have played the brand new Heroes of Order & Chaos only a little bit so far, so take my first impressions with a grain of salt. However, let me get to the point right away: It’s friggin’ awesome. Heroes of Order & Chaos is Gameloft’s attempt to bring the hugely popular MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) style of games to your iPhone and iPad. And this is not a simple task, since the genre is everything but casual. So when I first found out that Gameloft is trying to port it to mobile devices, I was pretty skeptical at first. But before I talk more about Heroes of Order & Chaos, let me backtrack a little bit to give our readers who are not familiar with the MOBA games somewhat of a background.
There was one game that started the genre: DotA (Defence of the Ancients). It was a mod for Warcraft 3, Blizzard’s very successful RTS that was released ten years ago, in 2002. And this game jump started the whole genre. Basically, the mod took a real time strategy game, removed all the base building, added elements from tower defence games, added plenty of role playing elements and limited your control to just one unit, your hero. And BAM – one of the most awesome 5vs5 multiplayer games that ever existed was created (in my own, biased opinion). There are 2 sides, each one with a pre-existing base at the corner of the map. The bases are connected by 3 lanes, protected by towers that shoot the heroes if they cross the border to enemy territory. In regular intervals each base will send out computer controlled creeps, that move along the lanes, trying to get into the enemy’s base and attacking everything that’s in their way (enemy creeps, enemy towers and enemy heroes). To tip the scales of the battle, the five heroes try to support their creeps as good as possible, earning money and experience along the way that has to be invested in new gear and skills so you can ultimately destroy the enemy’s base.
I guess now you’ll understand what I meant by saying this genre is everything but casual. And that’s just the bare bones explanation to give you an idea what MOBA games are about – there’s plenty more to it, like different hero types, upgradable and combinable items, last hitting – I could go on and on. Now, I’d usually point you to some of the genre’s biggest games if you’re interested in learning more about them. But in this case, I’m pointing you towards Heroes of Order & Chaos on your favourite iOS device! Why? Because Gameloft, and I can’t believe I’m saying this, did an outstanding job with their tutorial! In fact, that’s the kind of tutorial I wish DotA 2 would offer (I can’t speak for League of Legends as I’ve never tried it).
So by now we’ve established what a MOBA game is, and that Heroes of Order & Chaos is very competent at making you at home in this genre with its tutorial. So far, so good! The next thing I’d like to talk about is the business model. Heroes of Order & Chaos is a freemium game – and freemium oftentimes is either very good, or very bad news. In this case however, I’d say it’s good news with a bitter taste. First of all, the good news: MOBA games are very dependant on an active online community. These games are really meant to be played against human opponents, so with it being freely available on the App Store, this very much raises the chances for it to get a healthy and active community. On top of it, the way Gameloft handles access to the content necessary to play and enjoy playing the game, it is not necessary to invest money in order to have fun for a substantial amount of time. Heroes of Order & Chaos currently features 30 unique heroes that all need to be purchased to be permanently available for you to chose from. However, at any give time, six of those heroes will be available for you to play with for free. The line-up will change weekly.
So here’s the bad news: If you don’t want to pay any money, you wont always be able to play with your favourite hero. Which means you’ll also have to learn how to play the other heroes – be it what items work well with them or what skills you need to level. Also, buying a hero can be pretty expensive: From what I saw, the most expensive heroes will set you back almost 17$. That’s actually very expensive if you ask me. Now, if some of the most expensive heroes turn out to also be the strongest, this could result in some real balancing issues. Or if you can buy overpowered items with real money that give you a huge advantage in-game.
But like I said, I have only played a little of it so far, so I can’t really comment on the balancing. This is of course of major interest for anyone who plans on playing this game for a long time, but since everyone can check it out for free, I’d say just give it a shot and see for yourself how things turn out. You also have to keep in mind that Gameloft can adjust the freemium system anytime to resolve balancing issues (if it’s in their interest) – or to introduce balancing issues (if it’s in the interest of making more money with the game).
The final thing I’d like to say about Heroes of Order & Chaos is about the presentation. I would have never guessed I’d see the day where I say this, but here it goes: I love the voice-overs! In general, from the tutorial, to the menus and the in-game graphics, Heroes of Order & Chaos looks and sounds great! But what really took me by surprise was that so much of the tutorial, the menu information and the characters was voiced-over. And what was even more surprising: It doesn’t suck! In fact, I found it to be very atmospheric!
So that’s it, these are my first impressions of Gameloft’s brand new MOBA Heroes of Order & Chaos. There’s still many unanswered questions since I haven’t played that much yet – I just wanted to give you a basic idea of what to expect. If this intrigued you, I wholeheartedly recommend that you go ahead and give it a shot, especially since it’s free!
Do you enjoy high score chasing games? Do you like hot dogs? Do you like weird stuff? Yes? Then Heads Up! Hot Dogs sounds like just the right game for you! All you need to do is put hot dogs that fall from the sky on people’s heads. Wait, what?! Yeah, placing hot dogs on people’s heads, you read that right. Sometimes you really have to wonder what magical chemicals the developers of games such as Heads Up! Hot Dogs accidentally stumbled upon before they came up with the gameplay idea. Maybe they played too many Mario games and took the idea of magic mushrooms too literal?
Anywho, as long as it means we can get our hands on games that are as weirdly awesome as Heads Up! Hot Dogs, I’m totally fine with whatever dietary supplements the devs spice up their lives with! In case you’re still not sure what the heck I’m talking about, just go ahead and watch the trailer and I’m sure you’ll instantly understand. Heads Up! Hot Dogs is a universal app that will set you back $0.99 and like I said, if you dig the idea of placing hot dogs on peoples heads while chasing the high score, this game is totally worth it! It’s “the most realistic hot-dog-head-balancing game EVER” after all.
If you’re into iPhone games, it’s reasonable to assume that you’re familiar with the name Simogo by now. But in case you’re not: Simogo is the swedish development team who released some of the most touchscreen-optimized and creative games on the App Store. To be more precise, those guys brought us Bumpy Road, Kosmo Spin and Beat Sneak Bandit. Despite its obvious qualities, Beat Sneak Bandit, they’re latest release, wasn’t really my cup of tea – which doesn’t mean that it isn’t a great game with the usual, incredible amount of Simogo-polish. It just didn’t appeal to me the way the previous games did.
So let’s come back to the present: Simogo is now working on their 4th game called Year Walk. And I was really glad to see they are heading into a new direction with it! It’s darker and seems to be a title that is very story-driven. Which I find to be a fantastic idea, because I always thought Simogo’s games were very atmospheric and confident in their art direction.
Year Walk is going to be a first person adventure in which you’ll spend you’re time unraveling a mystery in 19th century Sweden. To understand what’s going on, you’ll have “to bend the rules of the universe and open the rift that separates our world and what lies beyond it” according to Simogo. Sounds intriguing, right?! For me, Year Walk is one of the games I’m really looking forward to. Unfortunately, it’s not quite clear when Year Walk will be released. The trailer says 2013 whereas the website still says it’ll hit the App Store this winter. But enough talk for now, time to soak in the atmosphere that this trailer oozes of:
Rockstar Games has announced that GTA: Vice City will be available on the App Store in the near future. And much like the name suggests, the setting could be described as an over the top version of Miami Vice. GTA: Vice City was the follow-up to the highly praised GTA 3, the game that introduced the third dimension to the GTA series. GTA 3 is already available for you iPhone and iPad since quite some time as well as the mobile-only entry in the franchise, GTA: Chinatown Wars (which we loved in our review).
As a matter of fact, as of this writing, both GTA 3 and GTA: Chinatown Wars are on sale for $0.99! So if you’ve always wanted to see what the fuss with these games is all about, or if you want to re-live some of the fun you’ve had with those games in the past, now is the time to grab ‘em!
Oh yeah, Minigore is back. Well, almost! The developer has released a brand new trailer showing off some glorious footage of a zombie slaying Santa! Yes you heard that right – apparently, our beloved Santa is now in the zombie killing business. When the original Minigore was released and the App Store wasn’t yet filled with tons and tons of games, it was one of the most outstanding titles for the iPhone and, in my opinion, still is one of the coolest dual-stick shooters around! According to Mountain Sheep, the developer, Minigore 2 is almost done, so I’m definitely looking forward to slaying those zombie hordes myself in the foreseeable future!
Listen up guys, with Real Racing 2 and Dead Space HD two of the most awesome games on the App Store are currently on sale! Dead Space HD dropped from $9.99 to $1.99 and Real Racing 2 dropped from $4.99 to $0.99. Both games are an incredible bargain at their current price tags. Heck, I even think they offer great value when they are not up for sale! I totally loved Dead Space in my review so go check it out if you are still in doubt! Also, have look at the trailers:
Dead Space is only on sale for the iPad, while the iPhone version remains at $6.99. With Real Racing 2, it’s the other way around: The price for the iPhone version is lowered to $0.99, whereas the iPad version will still set you back $6.99. Both games offer some impressive graphics and helped push what we thought was technically possible on the iOS platform to new heights. Therefore, I can only repeat myself: If you own either an iPhone or iPad and you’re into games (which you probably are, why on earth would you end up on TapArena otherwise?!) you should totally play those games!