10 New App Store Games To Watch [Aug 9 – 15]

I think this week’s biggest news is the potential Angry Birds killer Cannon Cadets.  It looks like it might have more of a puzzle solving bent to it, which will hopefully keep it from being labeled “just another clone”.  For you action fans there’s Shoot To Kill, a freemium game that’s the first in a potential line of “free for freaks” games.  You only need to pay if you want useful save games? Platforming fans were treated to the second installment of the revitalized Ghosts ‘N Goblins series, and if it’s anything like the first it should be a blast.  Oh, and I guess there’s that little sequel to a largely unknown iPhone game called iShoot 2…

Cannon Cadets – Could this possibly be the Angry Birds killer?  I’m not sure, but it sounds like fun.  The premise is similar in that you have to start a chain reaction that squashes the enemy in each level.  In Cannon Cadets, however, the levels look more like something out of the old board game Mousetrap than simply a pile of wood, bricks and ice that must be demolished.  On the down side, even though you get to choose between 4 characters, I think you only use one at a time, as opposed to Angry Birds where you have multiple birds and types of birds on the same level.  Still, it could prove to be a fresh variation on the physics puzzle theme.  The game has 80 levels, and the option to in-app purchase the ability to play the levels out of order, which would be a great bonus for people who might easily get stuck on certain levels.  Hopefully the game will follow in Angry Bird’s footsteps by adding extra levels from time to time.

Cannon Cadets XMG Studio Inc., Cannon Cadets, 31.66MB – $1.99

Shoot To Kill– Clearly Shoot To Kill is a shooter, but it’s hard to tell for sure if it’s one where you stay in the middle and just make sure everything doesn’t get to you, or if it’s more of a dual stick shooter.  Based on the screen shots I’d wager it’s the former.  What I can tell you is that there are 6 different game modes, including some multiplayer affairs.  In campaign mode there are over 30 levels, and you’ll get to blast 14 different types of demons with your choice of 5 weapons in order to earn 13 unique achievements.  The visuals look pretty slick, and hopefully it will have a rockin’ soundtrack.  It’s “selling” point, however, is that the game is “free for freaks”.  What you pay for, should you choose to make an In-App Purchase, is the ability to restore a game from where you last saved should you die.  The “for freaks” qualifier implies that if you can actually finish the game without having to buy any saves, you must be a freak.  Here’s hoping I can be a freak for once!

Shoot To Kill Me-Stars, Shoot To Kill, 24.15MB – Free

GHOSTS’N GOBLINS GOLD KNIGHTS 2 – Ghosts ‘N Goblins was the OTHER difficult platform game from Capcom for the NES – the favorite of course being Mega Man.  Unfortunately it never garnered the success of the robot with the always changing weapons, and only saw a few sequels here or there on various platforms.  I was excited when the first Gold edition came out for the iPhone, and wasn’t disappointed when I finally got my hands on it.  Hopefully the same will hold for part 2, because the game play of the first was pure retro gaming goodness.  On the other hand, the graphics and sound were very much up to today’s standards, and provided some of the better platforming entertainment for the iPhone.  This time around we get a brand new character, the ability to rearrange the user interface, and in-app purchases that imagine will give you access to new weapons and armor – and maybe even new levels?


Attack of the Kraken – This is a fun little shooter that pits you against UFOs and 4 different types of kraken through 16 different levels in 7 unique locales.  Your ship is constantly moving, and you rotate the ship left and right to change your heading.  You can actually run into the kraken, but don’t let them shoot you.  You also don’t want to get too close to the ground, because that marks instant death.  Scoring is based on shield strength – the stronger your shield, the more points you get.  Killing kraken with a fully loaded shield earns you research points, which in turn make it easier for you to kill the kraken that helped you earn the points.  Your ship’s a bit tiny, but overall the graphics are pretty slick (the blurred screen shots don’t do it justice) and the music is great.  The only problem is it technically only supports 3G(S)+ devices.  It will run on 2G iPod Touch, but you have to load it on-device, and if you sync to iTunes it will get removed.

Attack of the Kraken Quantum Sheep, Attack of the Kraken, 11.76MB – $0.99

Guns’n’Glory AD-FREE – This latest release from Handy Games is in one of my least favorite genres, and yet it has me quite intrigued.  It’s a tower defense game, but the setting is the Wild West, and you actually play the bad guys!  Your job is to loot the passing wagon trains and make sure no one escapes to alert the sheriff.  You’ll have at your disposal “cool cowboys, crazy Mexicans and brave Indians”, and eventually you’ll be able to afford cannons and steam trains with mounted Gatling guns.  The graphics look quite amusing, and the setting makes it stand out among the crowd (the only other western themed tower defense game I’m aware of is Cowboys Vs Zombies).

Guns'n'Glory AD-FREE HandyGames, Guns’n’Glory AD-FREE, 12.67MB – $2.99

So Long, Oregon! – I have to confess that I’m not really sure this would interest me.  I’m mentioning it, however, because I find it amusing that someone wants to spoof a 20+ year old game.  I know Gameloft recently updated the game for mobile devices, but this looks like it’s more in line with the original, as much as that’s possible within the context of the spoof.  The description promises “realistic Conestoga wagon physics” and “5 exciting diseases”, and even lets you veer off course and head for El Dorado, the “lost city of gold”.  After all, it’s not like you’re going to find gold on the The Oregon Trail, right?  The context is cheesy and the graphics are a little too retro for my tastes, but I think this will definitely have a certain appeal, especially to those who were fans of Enviro-Bear 2010.  Of course, since these were also the folks that created Skullpogo, I might have to give it a chance anyway.

So Long, Oregon! Blinkbat Games, So Long, Oregon!, 20.11MB – $1.99

Gravity Runner – Gravity Runner looks like Canabalt taken to the next level.  The mechanic is basically the same, where you are continually running and must jump over deadly obstacles.  However, a second tap while you are in mid-air will reverse gravity, giving you a new view of the situation.  It also appears that there might be items to collect along the way.  I’m not sure I’m totally sold on the graphical style, but the grid based look of the foreground objects certainly does make the images stand out from the crowd.

Gravity Runner We Are Colin, Gravity Runner, 12.87MB – $0.99

iShoot 2 – What can I say?  Long before Doodle Jump and Angry Birds, iShoot was the original phenomenon of the App Store.  Now it’s back and better than ever.  The graphics and sound have been overhauled for your sensory pleasure.  The weapons system was completely redesigned, hopefully allowing for even more destructive fun.  Combat takes place on vast scrolling and zooming landscapes.  Your tanks are customizable, though it would be nice to know exactly what that means.  Multiplayer is now available over Bluetooth, which is great for those with iDevice friends and no WiFi.  There’s even a campaign mode for the unsocial type like myself.

iShoot 2 Naughty Bits, iShoot 2, 56.52MB – $2.99

The Incident – This game takes a slightly different approach to the whole “climb as high as you can” motif.  The structure you’re climbing here is a pile of everything and anything, and it’s actually being chucked down at you as you’re climbing it!  Not only do you have to keep going higher, but you have to dodge your “ladder” as it’s being made.  There are plenty of power ups, power downs and collectables to keep you occupied while you’re jumping.  The graphics and sound will make you long for your old NES or Sega Master System.  Can you discover the source of The Incident?

The Incident Big Bucket Software, The Incident, 8.21MB – $1.99

NinJump – The “continual climbing or falling” genre seems to be gaining momentum these days, and it’s nice to see some developers putting a little creativity into it.  With NinJump you’re actually jumping between two buildings instead of jumping on platforms, but there is still plenty to dodge.  What’s cool is that if you run into something while you’re jumping you’ll slice it with your sword, and if you get three of the same thing in a row you’ll get a temporary power based off of whatever you sliced.  The graphics are decent, the sound is good, and the game is free as long as you don’t mind ads.  Of course, you can pay to get those ads removed…

NinJump Backflip Studios, NinJump, 18.28MB – Free

And here are some other notable releases that you should keep you occupied for hours on end:

That wraps up another week of games to watch.  As always, if there’s something that came out last week that you think is worth our readers knowing about, please feel free to comment on this post.  Until next time.

Previous weekly installments of our New App Store Games Roundup:

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