10 New App Store Games To Watch [April 23 – 29]
The last couple of weeks have been pretty prosperous for those that like freemium offerings. RPG fans can indulge in Inotia 4: Assassin Of Berkel, the fourth installment of the action / RPG series from international developer Com2us. You do, of course, have the option of outright buying the game which will automatically eliminate the ads and give you some in-game currency, but IAP can take care of that as well. If you like a little strategy with your action there’s Castle Master 3D, a combination of Action / RPG and castle defense. This game boasts battles of 300 soldiers on each side, but you can expect to run it on nothing less than the latest generation of devices. If you prefer something a bit more lighthearted and focusing on twitchy timing you’ll get a kick out of Cannon Cat (TMA Review). A daredevil feline, a mess of fish trapped in bubbles out in space, and some vicious penguins with helicopter “wings” make this whimsical offering a lot of fun.
Cannon Cat – Take the barrel sequences from Donkey Kong Country, do a little finagling so the plot revolves around a cat, fish trapped in bubbles and angry penguins that use equipment to fly, and you pretty much have Cannon Cat nailed down. If you seek out my review you’ll see that I’ve already had a pretty good time with this game, but I’m really looking forward to seeing the game get bigger. There are currently 80 levels spread across two different environments, but there’s a third level set in the works that should add some interesting new mechanics to the game. I’d like to see enough people start playing this that the developers are encouraged to make even more level sets. The game is universal, it’s currently free, and if you’re one of those people that cares it only requires a tap to do anything, so you can basically play it with one finger (though I would suggest holding the device with your other hand).
Scarface – If you’ve ever felt like walking in the shoes of one of the most famous mobsters of all time, now’s your chance. Say hello to your little friends as you take on the role of Tony Montana, Cuban refugee turned Miami underworld kingpin. You’ll engage in 96 missions that will take you from South Beach to the Club District. Custom build your mansion, choose from 39 businesses to own and upgrade, and do your best to show everyone who is the boss. The visuals and soundtrack will make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to 80s Miami, while voices and images from the film will thrust you head first into Scarface’s world. You can even expect to hear all the famous quotes spewed by iconic actor Al Pacino. I don’t know how different this is going to be from any other iOS mafia sim, but with an award winning license backing it up hopefully there will be some oomph behind this game.
Fuse Powered Inc., Scarface™ – Free
Cargo-Bot – The premise behind the game is pretty simple. You program a robot to move crates around a shipping yard. The game supposedly has beautiful retina graphics, though the screen shots don’t look that special to me. At least there’s the promise of fiendish puzzles. So why did I really write about this game? It’s free, and it’s the first game to be released that was entirely programmed on an iPad using a language called Codea This tool has actually been around for quite a while, but sadly the release of Cargo-Bot is the first I’ve heard of it. The tool is based off of the LUA scripting language (interestingly enough, the same language that runs Corona, another iOS development tool). The interface is quite interactive, allowing you to mess with the program while it’s running. The tool supports the new retina display iPad as well as 3D graphics, a complete physics engine and more. If you’ve ever wanted to dabble with development right on your device, Cargo-Bot will show you what can be done and Codea will let you do it.
Inotia 4: Assassin Of Berkel – As the number in the name indicates, this is the fourth installment of the popular action / RPG series from developer Com2us. This time around you’ll follow the exploits of two characters as they travel a brand new Inotian continent. Choose from 6 different characters classes, each of which has 15 unique skills to offer. Bolster your party by hiring mercenaries, and then get ready to explore a land comprised of 400 different maps. Take on various side quests to gather rare items and make your characters even more powerful. Once you’ve completed the game, hardcore players can try their hand at the infinite dungeon mode. You can play the game for free as long as you don’t mind advertising, or you can pay for no ads and get a bonus collection of gems to start out with. If you decide to try the free you can switch to the full version without losing your data, even though they are two separate applications.
Retro Game Pack – powered by AppMotion / AppMotion Controller – Much like Cargo-Bot, this is more about the potential than the product. Retro Game Pack is comprised of two games: space invaders and pong. You’ve played them both before, and honestly there are probably many much better implementations of each game on the App Store. What’s interesting about this package, however, is the additional piece of software that gets loaded on your iPhone. Sure there are also pieces of software that turn your iPhone into a retro style controller, but this one in effect makes your iPhone the equivalent of Nintendo’s Wii-mote. With the iPad’s ability to stream its output to a TV, there are certainly some interesting possibilities to be had here. While I’m not even sure that pong and space invaders are good choices for demonstrating this technology, I can’t wait to see the games that are. How about an AppMotion addition to the Infinity Blade franchise?
Brain School Training – If you’re looking for a Brain Age style game but don’t want to have to bust out your DS to play it, Brain School Training should suit your needs perfectly. This game started its life on the PocketPC platform, and it’s just as fun now that it has made its way to Apple’s world. The app features 20 different mini games ranging from “simple” memory tests to intriguing number puzzles like Kakuro. While it’s not scientifically certified to “train your brain”, it can certainly help you improve your skills verbally, spatially, numerically and musically. The game is broken out into 4 school years, with 5 puzzles and 5 difficulty levels for each puzzle in each year. At the end of the year you’ll even get to take a final exam (it’s actually a lot more entertaining than it might sound). Statistics and progress reports will show you how you are improving your skills, and Game Center support lets you show off to the world. You might have thought you were ready to be done with school, but as far as I’m concerned class is back in session.
Mastersoft Mobile, Brain School Training – $0.99
Marvel vs Capcom 2 – If you had to label someone the “master” of 2D fighting games, there would probably be little argument from most gamers that the title should go to Capcom. One of the greatest match-ups the company has created was the Marvel vs Capcom franchise, and now you can be part of this rumble royale wherever you go thanks to the iOS port. Choose from a cast of 56 different characters, one of the largest to date in any fighting game. Do you prefer the old school styles of the Capcom characters, the mutated powers of the Marvel crew, or a little bit of both? The controls have been optimized for the touch screen, including a new “Flick” button to streamline complex combinations. All the battle modes you’ve come to expect from this franchise are present in the port, and you can even link up with a friend via Bluetooth. And of course one of the highlights of any 2D Capcom fighting game is the visuals, which the latest generation of iOS devices should be able to push out quite nicely. I could certainly handle seeing the Marvel gang do some damage on my portable device.
CAPCOM, MARVEL VS. CAPCOM 2 – $2.99
Castle Master 3D – This game sounds like an interesting mix of action / RPG and strategy. You get to control a single character that you can equip with a choice of 27 different weapons and 9 unique sets of armor, and then control him in battle against the enemy. You will also build up your castle so you can recruit soldiers to take with you into war. The iTunes description claims party sizes of 300 troops, and since this isn’t an old school strategy type setup where one “token” might represent 100 soldiers that means there will be a lot of action taking place on your screen. Add to that what appears to be a claim of 45 different castles to recover, and you’ll have plenty of war to wage and enemies to crush. The game is universal and it’s free. There are plenty of IAP options, and from the sounds of it you currently have to take advantage of IAP in order to complete the game, but it also sounds like the developers have made amends for that in a recently submitted update. If you’re not a big fan of in game purchases you might want to hold off for a bit, but I’d definitely keep this one on your radar.
Alpha Cloud Inc., Castle Master 3D – Free
Knights Arena – Online only games are kind of a tricky topic for me, because truthfully I don’t really play them. I prefer my gaming to be a solo experience. Besides which, they were all honestly beginning to look somewhat the same in terms of iOS offerings. Knights Arena looks like it might offer something different for those bored with the current lot, however. Prepare yourself to go toe to toe (or horse to horse, as the screen shots seem to indicate) for some real time duels with budding knights around the world. Or maybe you’re more of a sharpshooter, in which case you’ll want to engage others in a stirring round of archery. You’ll gain experience and honor, which will in turn allow you to level up so you can improve your stats and equipment. Invite your GameCenter and Facebook friends for some friendly competition or to wipe the battlefield up with them. The game is free and universal, though it does require an internet connection to play.
Namco, Knights Arena – Free
Tower Of Fortune – I’ve never really gotten into slot machines, either in real life or on a virtual screen. However, there was something about Tower Of Fortune that struck my fancy, so I decided to give it a shot. Even if virtual slots isn’t your thing, if you’re looking for a casual RPG for your iPhone I’d suggest giving Tower Of Fortune a spin (see what I did there?) The graphics are great combination of Gameboy style with modern resolution. The artwork is actually pretty slick and the animation is decent and sometimes even humorous. The battles are pretty basic but enjoyable none the less, and while you won’t earn enough cash to progress through the game if you only visit each location once, you can continually visit past locales to earn in-game currency so you don’t have to use any real cash on IAP. The different events that take place as a result of your spins in the tavern are quite amusing as well. There’s nothing earth shattering about this game, but I figured it was a nice one to end this week on and I for one am glad I purchased it.
Game Stew, Tower of Fortune – $0.99
Well that wraps up another week of games to watch on the App Store. As always, if there’s something you’ve played from the past week that you feel should be part of this list, please leave a reply to this post.
Previous weekly installments of our New App Store Games Roundup:
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [April 16 – April 22]
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [April 9 – April 15]
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [April 2 – April 8]
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [March 26 – April 1]
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [March 19 – 25]
- 1o New App Store Games To Watch [March 12 – 18]