10 New App Store Games To Watch [September 24 – 30]

Well I suppose there might be one or two of you yet that haven’t heard about Bad Piggies, the latest release from the renowned developers of Angry Birds.  It takes place in the Angry Birds universe, but this time around you get to play the pigs and the game play is completely different, so I give them a thumbs up for that.  While I haven’t personally tried the game yet, the one I have managed to get myself hooked on is King Oddball from 10 Tons Studios.  If you consider yourself any sort of physics game fan you’ll need to give this one a try.  If you prefer a more traditional adventure game then The Last Express will be right up your alley.  This iOS port of an acclaimed classic will give you more than 20 hours of play, 30 characters to meet and the ability to rewind the action when you want to try a different course.

Toyzilla – Take a castle destruction game, replace the weaponry with toy dragons, and you get where Toyzilla is headed.  Instead of simply launching your dragons at the castles you’ll send them into the air and then pick a part of the castle to attack.  Also, rather than having a limited number of attacks you can keep trying to demolish parts of the castle until your time runs out.  Ultimately, though, you must defeat the castle’s king in order to claim victory.  You can play against prepackaged castles or make friends with other players and tackle their domains.  You can construct your own castle too, and you’ll earn more rewards for both defeating other players’ castles and creating ones that opponents can’t take down.  Gathered resources will allow you to upgrade your castle as well as your dragons, but to actually buy new dragons outright seems to require a resource that comes in short supply unless you purchase it via IAP.  Hopefully that’s just because I haven’t played enough yet.  Either way, this is a cute take on the physics destruction genre that has a lot of potential.

Toyzilla OrionArts, Toyzilla – Free

King Oddball – There’s no question that I’m a fan of 10 Tons (see Azkend 2), but when I saw the screen shots on King Oddball I wasn’t quite sure I’d enjoy this game.  Turns out I couldn’t have been more wrong.  The visuals remind me of an Adult Swim cartoon and the action puts a new spin on the physics puzzle game – quite literally.  As the titular King Oddball you must toss rocks at the defending army with your tongue.  Not only is the concept as a whole amusing, but there’s something both satisfying and hilarious about watching a rock bounce off of a tank or helicopter.  You just don’t expect that sort of thing.  Currently there are only 15 achievements, but with 120+ levels to conquer you certainly won’t need the achievements to keep you busy.  The game is universal, and to it’s credit plays incredibly smoothly on my iPod Touch 4.

King Oddball 10tons Ltd, King Oddball – $0.99

Kirin Wars – There was a great strategy game I used to play on my Nintendo DS that was a lot like Advance Wars but with a fantasy theme.  Unfortunately I don’t recall the name at the moment, so let’s just say Kirin Wars appears to be an Advance Wars style game with a fantasy theme for the iPhone.  A compelling storyline ties together 15 missions that comprise several hours of game play.  There are also plans for future DLC to expand the game play, which based on the iTunes description might actually be driven by how people play the game.  I’m not quite sure what that means, but I’m intrigued.  There are currently 35 commander and 29 grunt unit types to command, and the ability to upgrade individual characters means you can have a different experience each time you play through the game.  Kirin Wars has an intriguing hand drawn art style that gives the game a unique look.  All told this looks to be a turn based strategy sleeper hit.

Kirin Wars Zephyr Games, Kirin Wars – $1.99

Bad Piggies – Far be it from me to neglect the force that is Rovio when they release something new.  In this case, however, I’m actually quite intrigued.  In this first true follow-up to Angry Birds, you take on the roll of the pigs as must try and safely navigate to the eggs they want to steal.  Unfortunately they have lost the blueprints to all of their vehicles, so it’s up to you to help them reconstruct their transports and effectively execute their thieving schemes.  There are 60 construction packed levels, with an additional 30 to unlock by achieving 3 stars in each of the base levels.  There are 33 objects to help fuel your creative juices, and as a last ditch effort you can recruit the mechanic pig to build the vehicle for you (I assume via IAP).  Visually the game looks to fit well in the Angry Birds universe.  And, as is typical for these guys, don’t expect a universal version of the game.

Bad Piggies Rovio Entertainment, Bad Piggies – $0.99
Bad Piggies HD Rovio Entertainment, Bad Piggies HD – $2.99

Blendamaze – Pretty much all of us have played a labyrinth game or two on our iDevice.  After all, the tilt control is the prefect venue for a marble rolling game.  This is one genre that while rather fascinating can also become stale rather quickly.  Thankfully Blendamaze has decided to stir things up a bit, and even teach you something about colors in the process.  Each of the game’s 100 levels will require you to roll your marble through various wells full of paint until eventually you’ve made just the right mixture to match the target color and escape the maze.  Of course many of the mazes will make you trigger multiple matches before you can get out, and most of them will put additional wells in the way that can mess you up if you accidentally roll into them.  The first three level sets roll you through the primary, secondary and tertiary color hues, while the final challenge will be to complete the full spectrum levels.  There are plenty of Game Center achievements to earn, new levels on the way, and a mode that lets your kids (or you) just roll through the wells and paint free form on the screen.

Blendamaze BorderLeap, Blendamaze – $0.99

Pilot’s Path – This overhead view helicopter game just screams old school console goodness.  As a dishonorably discharged USAF pilot you’ll have to link up with the mob in order to make ends meet.  Interestingly enough, rather than becoming some sort of enforcer it sounds like you take on the role of a “goods transportation specialist”.  In a game that seems built for combat all indications are that you won’t find any, so the game play should feel different than any of Pilot’s Path’s peers.  There are two huge locations to explore which cover a whopping 50 islands, and with randomly generated maps each game should feel unique.  You can visit the mechanic to upgrade your helicopter, though I’m not quite sure what that’s for.  The game is universal, and you can use your iPhone / iPod Touch as a controller for your iPad.  You can also hook it up to your TV to play on the really big screen if you’d like.  Sega Genesis, I miss you already!

Pilot's Path Happymagenta, Pilot’s Path – $0.99

The Last Express – If you’ve ever wondered what the creator of Prince Of Persia was doing before he created that memorable game, wonder no more.  Thanks to DotEmu we can experience his pre-prince masterpiece, The Last Express.  Take a step back into 1914 and board the Orient Express where you’re in for a trip full of mystery, romance and international tom-foolery.  There are more than 20 hours of game play to be found on this faithfully recreation of the famed train.  30+ characters will make the journey come to life, all walking about in real time just like you’d expect when you’re on a train.  Interact with the characters, or eavesdrop on them when you don’t want them to know your intentions.  Sneak into their compartments and search for clues.  The game is completely reactive, so start over and try something different to get the characters to react in a different way.  You can even rewind the action and take a different course mid way through the game.  The Last Express sounds like it has a lot of features that modern games don’t even tackle, so if you’re any kind of adventure game fan you probably won’t want to miss this one.

The Last Express DotEmu, The Last Express – $4.99

Death Call 2 – I’ve never been real good at 3D games but I like shooters, which is why I think I’ve latched on to the “shooting gallery” style game so much.  One of my favorites to come along on the iOS platform was Death Call, and now the sequel is here and even better.  Like most shooting gallery games, the goal is to shoot everything before it shoots you.  Each enemy has two meters, one showing how much health they have left and the other how soon before they attack.  This actually allows you to plan some strategy instead of just shooting randomly at whatever looks good.  Random power ups give you temporary perks on the field, and between rounds you can upgrade your weapon for maximum fighting potential.  There’s a campaign mode with a storyline that even has some puzzles between shooting levels, and then there’s the endless mode to test your stamina.  The western theme is clichéd but cool, though at least it’s augmented with robots for a sci-fi twist.

Death Call 2 Betz Software, Death Call 2 – Free

Jumpster – This game has a couple of notable things going for it.  First of all, it’s the first physics puzzler from G5 Entertainment, a company known for its adventure / hidden object games.  Second, I believe it is the first freemium offering from the publisher.  It’s actually an interesting little game that has you trying to help a poor little alien escape the planet it has crash landed on.  You’ll have to maneuver around many challenging obstacles as you attempt to collect the fuel the alien needs to get back home.  What makes things tricky is that the alien can’t be out of water for very long, so ultimately you need to land him in bubbles or pools of water to keep him refreshed.  The game currently contains 80 levels with more to come, and there is Game Center support for achievements.  The main thing to keep in mind is that there are costumes and power ups you can buy that cost in-game coins, but so far it has been my experience that those coins are hard to come by while playing, so if you want any of the cool perks be prepared to spend some IAP to supplement your coin stash.

Jumpsterâ„¢ G5 Entertainment, Jumpsterâ„¢ – Free

Wake Up Mr. Moore! HD – The Moonwalls is an indie development house (well actually pretty much one guy I believe) that knows you shouldn’t put all of your eggs in one basket.  While their staple is adventure games, they’ve also released a racing game, a match 3 game and now a physics puzzle game.  Mr. Moore has a problem that most of us can relate to – his faulty alarm clock isn’t waking him up for work.  You are the best watchmaker in town, and it’s up to you to make sure his alarm clock goes off every morning just as expected.  With your trusty cache of spare gears you’ll need to fix the clock each time it breaks.  There will be plenty of obstacles to overcome, with a variety of levels designed to ease the newcomer in as well as satisfy the seasoned puzzle gamer.  A likeable protagonist makes you want to help the cause, and colorful audio and visual elements give the game a cartoon like atmosphere.  Game Center achievements and leaderboards give you something to work towards, just in case helping poor Mr. Moore out isn’t quite enough.

Wake up Mr. Moore! HD The Moonwalls, Wake up Mr. Moore! HD – $1.99

That was just 10 of the many new releases this past week. Here are several more notable titles you may find of interest:

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:

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