10 App Store Games To Watch [8/1/16]
The App Store continues to be flooded with new games, and I continue to try and dig out the ones that arenâ€™t some variant of slots or a game that was â€œlooselyâ€ based off of a template from a â€œlearn to code in 12 easy stepsâ€ online course.Â I found another online game that suits me in the form of ION Space.Â Itâ€™s a dual stick space shooter that handles my two biggest multiplayer pet peeves perfectly: thereâ€™s no chat option, and each game forces you to start fresh so youâ€™re not bullied by the folks that play it 80 hours a week to your measly 2 hours.Â Kitten Squad gives Legend Of Zelda style game play a social bent.Â Thankfully the â€œsave the animalsâ€ aspect is presented fashionably and not shoved down your throat, and while the levels can get a bit repetitive it still manages to provide some old fashioned console game fun.Â The Counter Of Death is akin to taking the limited control scheme of Dragonâ€™s Lair and applying it to a Kung Fu game.Â Itâ€™s surprisingly entertaining, and thanks to the restrictive controls is much more accessible on the touch screen than many full blown action games.
The Counter Of Death [6/29/16] â€“ This game is kind of quirky and I really like it.Â Itâ€™s kind of like someone took the cut scenes from an 8 bit favorite like Ninja Gaiden and made them interactive.Â Youâ€™re trying to rescue your girlfriend, and in order to do so youâ€™ll need to conquer floor after floor filled with Kung Fu fighting thugs.Â There are no complicated control schemes, however.Â All you have to do is anticipate their attack and press the high or low button to block the appropriate move.Â Once youâ€™ve countered every punch they throw at you, as indicated by the number of flames underneath their portrait, youâ€™ll take them out with you good chop.Â You then add their flames to your haul for the current run.Â Occasionally youâ€™ll have to defend yourself from shurikens, but I donâ€™t think you get any flames from them.Â There is also a boss at the end of each floor that will take multiple hits to defeat.Â Once youâ€™ve been defeated you can use the flames youâ€™ve earned to buy more hearts if you have enough.Â I love the visual style, and the sound and music really hearken back to the 16 bit era of gaming, which is probably my favorite time.
yun whan kim, The Counter Of Death – Free
Break Away by Hondune Games [7/2/16] â€“ Imagine taking a Picross game but playing it in reverse, and instead of tapping the blocks away you used a slingshot based brick breaker mechanic.Â If that makes any sense then youâ€™ve got a good feel for what Break Away is.Â You start with a playing field comprised of a certain number of bricks across and down, and you must create the specified pattern by knocking the unnecessary bricks away with some balls and a slingshot.Â The pattern is revealed at the beginning of the level, but if you forget then you must use one of your â€œrevealâ€ power ups to show it again â€“ or, you could just restart the level if you wish.Â Youâ€™ll have a variety of balls to use including ones that get two hits before they disappear, explosive balls that remove several bricks at once, and ghost balls that donâ€™t become solid until you tap the screen.Â Working against you will be ghost bricks that balls will pass through, bricks that require multiple hits to destroy and bricks that canâ€™t be destroyed at all.Â There is also a selection of other objects that often hinder but can sometimes help you depending on how you handle them.Â The game currently has four level sets and the typical couple of extra slots with the words â€œcoming soonâ€ dangling over them.Â If youâ€™re tired of the same old retreads when it comes to brick breaking games, Break Away is certainly worth looking into.
Brandon Proulx, Break Away by Hondune Games – Free
ION Space [7/5/16] â€“ This is the way on online game should be.Â Load it up, press play, and youâ€™re instantly in a game.Â Thereâ€™s no waiting room, and Iâ€™ve never had a problem connecting to a game yet.Â Make your statement and wipe out the competition or donâ€™t make the cut and come back again when youâ€™re rested, but you donâ€™t have to worry about snarky comments or idle banter because there is no chatting feature.Â The perfect scenario for a loner in a multiplayer world.Â The game itself is a top down twin stick space shooter.Â As you destroy resources (and the occasional enemy if youâ€™re lucky) youâ€™ll level up, at which point you can boost one of several stats.Â Since this is not a persistent world youâ€™ll get many opportunities to check out what order works best for you in terms of boosting your abilities.Â Every so often youâ€™ll also get the chance to change your ship which has the bonus of giving you a better weapon to defend yourself with.Â The neat part about upgrading is that it happens â€œon the flyâ€, so you donâ€™t have to go to a secondary screen or pause the game.Â The slight down side to this is that selecting an upgrade means youâ€™re giving up some control of your ship, even if itâ€™s only for a second.Â Still, as far as casual online multiplayer games goes, this is one of the best Iâ€™ve played in quite a while.
burak ozcan, ION Space – Free
Steps [7/11/16] â€“ Steps is another sterling example of a basic casual game done right from the folks at Ketchapp.Â All you have to do is roll your cube (or other object once you acquire enough gems) from the beginning to the end of each level.Â The levels are procedurally generated, and you get to watch them be constructed, and fall away, as you roll through them.Â Youâ€™ll encounter all sorts of fun traps like spikes, walls that squish you, and platforms that move away to reveal more spikes.Â There are also fans that wonâ€™t hurt you but can delay you enough for the decaying path behind you to catch up with you, as well as red blocks that push back and try to prevent your progress.Â It seems like they introduce new traps every couple of levels, which is kind of cool.Â In addition to the gems you can collect there are also shapes to be found along the path, though Iâ€™m not quite sure what they do.Â There are also letters that will spell out words when you get enough of them, which Iâ€™m sure affords you another bonus.Â There are missions to complete which can earn you even more gems, and there are two Game Center leaderboards: one for high score and the other for the number of levels youâ€™ve beaten.Â The thing I like about Ketchapp is that they manage to take concepts that feel like theyâ€™ve been done a thousand times before and add a certain something to make them enjoyable again.
Ketchapp, Steps – Free
Wardwell House [11/11/15] – This is kind of an odd game, and to be perfectly honest Iâ€™m not 100% sure I really liked it.Â However, no matter how many times I thought I should just quit and move on to something else I ended up seeing it through to the end, so to me that says something about the game.Â Itâ€™s really more about exploring an environment than actually playing a game, as there are only a couple of occasions where you have to â€œdoâ€ anything as opposed to selecting a direction or examining an item marked with a yellow dot.Â Still, thereâ€™s a mesmerizing quality about the atmosphere that makes you want to know why youâ€™re there and what this mysterious locale is all about. The 360 degree panoramic view reminds me of some of the old Mysterious Island games, and I really like the black and white visuals.Â Itâ€™s a wonderful change of pace from the hidden object style that permeates the adventure game scene.Â I just hope that if this developer makes more adventure games that they try to incorporate some puzzle elements into future outings.Â And as a non-descript spoiler, the ending was a bit of a letdown.
Moolion Inc, Wardwell House – $0.99
Kitten Squad [7/14/16] – Welcome to Legend Of Zelda: The Socially Conscious Edition.Â I was a bit worried that this game would be so saturated with PETA propaganda that it would be unplayable, but thankfully that isnâ€™t the case.Â Instead itâ€™s a fun if not somewhat repetitive romp through various caves and buildings, destroying evil robots and freeing poor animals that have been imprisoned.Â Of course each main mission does come with a tale of woe about the animals you are rescuing, but if you donâ€™t feel like learning about the plight of the wildlife you can skip the presentations.Â Once on a mission youâ€™ll proceed through each room, blasting away until youâ€™ve eliminated all the mechanical adversaries in that room.Â Collect any hearts they drop to replenish your health, and gather the coins so that you can buy cool swag between missions.Â And in a nod to Super Crate Box, youâ€™ll often get the chance to change up your weapon throughout a mission with a random replacement.Â If you need some extra coins you can visit the pirate pug to get side quests that refill on a daily basis.Â There are no environmental puzzles and you donâ€™t have the ability to get more base hearts, but the multiple missions and randomly generated, replayable levels make this a nice substitute for a proper Zelda installment.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Kitten Squad – Free
Polyforge [7/11/16] â€“ This game helps support the adage that â€œsimple rulesâ€.Â Each level has a multi-sided face spinning in the middle of it.Â Your avatar is spinning the opposite direction of the shape around its perimeter, and all you have to do is tap the screen to launch your avatar towards the shape.Â The goal is simply to hit each face of the shape once and only once.Â Sounds simple enough, right?Â Well, thankfully â€œsimpleâ€ does not equal â€œeasyâ€, as this game can get quite challenging as you progress through each level.Â Thankfully if youâ€™re connected to the internet youâ€™ll occasionally get the opportunity to continue from where you made a mistake by watching a video, but sadly Iâ€™ve found that all too often that doesnâ€™t keep my from blowing it again right away once Iâ€™ve continued.Â In level mode itâ€™s one mistake and youâ€™re done, unless of course you get that second change though the video.Â At least you only have to redo the level that you were on.Â Thereâ€™s also an endless mode that I think is even more fun, as you not only get to make a few mistakes, but the size of the shape shrinks and grows depending on how well you are doing.Â Overall this is an addictive causal game that puts a fresh new spin on things.
ImpactBlue Studios Pty Ltd, Polyforge – Free
Hungry Shark Evolution [6/25/15] â€“ Yeah, I know Hungry Shark World just came out not too long ago, but that one isnâ€™t compatible with my device, so I thought Iâ€™d give its predecessor a try.Â If youâ€™re into the â€œeat things that are smaller and try to grow biggerâ€ style of game, this is one of the best Iâ€™ve seen both in terms of visuals and variety.Â You start out with a reef shark, and when you get enough experience you can upgrade to a bigger shark.Â There is also a special area that is unlocked when youâ€™ve reached 350,000 points that provides you with additional sharks (probably for pay, though I canâ€™t say for sure since I havenâ€™t unlocked it yet).Â Your primary goal is to eat everything thatâ€™s smaller than you, aside from a couple of critters that are bad news no matter what size you are, and avoid the things that are bigger and want to attack you.Â As long as you stay alive youâ€™ll earn experience and also collect coins.Â When you find special shells youâ€™ll unlock missions, and completing those earns you additional coins as well as gems.Â Gems can be used to continue a game when you die, and both gems and coins are used for various purchases and upgrades.Â Of course if you donâ€™t collect them fast enough you can buy some via IAP if you wish.Â While Iâ€™ve enjoyed the game I was a bit on the fence in terms of writing about it, but after this last run where I must have eaten at least 10 different swimmers and divers I decided it was worth mentioning.Â Just remember, this is one time you should feel free to feed the wildlife.
Future Games of London, Hungry Shark Evolution – Free
RogueMON â€“ Free roguelike indie game RPG [7/8/16] â€“ Most of me didnâ€™t want to report on this one, because frankly it tends to be in rather poor taste.Â To that regards, please donâ€™t let your kids play it (unless, of course, your kids are grown and out of the house).Â RogueMON is the Pokemon game for people with a warped sense of humor.Â But, if you set that and the gameâ€™s 80â€™s shareware look aside, RogueMON is actually a fun take on the Pokemon genre.Â As you would expect you start with one creature, and you can collect more than 50 others as you play through the randomly generated levels.Â There is no story, so in typical rogue-like fashion when your last fighter dies you start from the beginning.Â As you capture new creatures youâ€™ll unlock them so you can use them when you start a new game, but you always start with only one creature, so if you want a bigger party on a particular run through youâ€™ll need to capture more â€œparticipantsâ€ along the way.Â Throughout the course of play your creatures will gain experience and eventually learn new attacks, which like everything else you lose when the game is over.Â But, from that regards itâ€™s like a brand new experience every time you play.Â I like the fact that combat is interactive â€“ once youâ€™ve selected an attack you still have to tap the screen at the right time to execute it, and the same goes for defending yourself.Â I also think itâ€™s cool that when you capture a monster you can either add it to your party or consume it to boost the XP of the character you captured it with.Â And, even though the visuals are a bit dated and the character concepts can be a bit crude, the designs are still pretty cool in many instances.Â This is definitely not the most politically correct monster brawler around, but itâ€™s unique features make it worth checking out.
Burger Circus, RogueMON – FREE roguelike indie game RPG – Free
The Raccoon Escape [7/23/16] â€“ Welcome to â€œDoodle Jump 2.0â€.Â Actually, the only thing this game really has in common with Doodle Jump is the fact that youâ€™re constantly going up.Â You see, in Raccoon Escape you control a raccoon thatâ€™s tied to a rope.Â Instead of tilting the screen to jump, however, you actually have to tap gears that appear on the sides of the avenue youâ€™re ascending.Â The more gears you tap and the less time you take between taps, the more quickly youâ€™ll ascend. This is a good thing, because each level has some sort of obstacle that youâ€™re trying to outrun.Â In the first level itâ€™s a column of lava.Â Unfortunately thatâ€™s apparently not enough of a deterrent, so there will also be obstacles coming down from the top of the screen.Â To avoid these inconveniences youâ€™ll need to swipe left and right, and at times youâ€™ll probably wish you had another hand or two.Â There are at least two areas to explore, one of which gets unlocked when youâ€™ve travelled far enough in one go at the first area.Â Iâ€™ll let you know when I get there.Â As with most of these games there is currency to collect, in this case acorns, which you can use to upgrade your power ups or buy swag to adorn the raccoon with.Â The visuals are some of the best Iâ€™ve seen from this type of game, looking more like a Saturday morning cartoon than the hand drawn scribbles that often define The Raccoon Escapeâ€™s peers.Â As you get going faster and the screen gets more cluttered the performance seems to suffer just a bit on my aging iPad 2, but on the amazing side the game has been running for an hour and a half now without crashing.Â If you like casual climbing / falling games, The Raccoon Escape puts a nice polish on the genre.
Crossing Answers, Lda, Raccoon Escape – Free
Tiny Wings [2/18/11] â€“ This editionâ€™s â€œretro relookâ€ comes in the form of Tiny Wings.Â I actually loaded this up as a result of trying a recent game that uses a similar game mechanic but sadly crashed and burned after a few minutes on my device.Â Thankfully Tiny Wings has no such issue, but more importantly it becomes highly addictive in a very short period of time.Â All you have to do is tap on the screen when your bird goes down a slope and let go when it heads up a slope.Â If you get the rhythm going correctly youâ€™ll get far, but get off kilter and the nighttime will catch up to you and put you to sleep.Â Complete missions to raise the score multiplier, and ultimately just get the highest score you can.Â Thatâ€™s all I remember from when I initially played the game, but even that was enough to keep me entertained for quite a while.Â Apparently at some point they added a second mode where you get to race against three computer opponents across 20 different hilltops, which is also a blast.Â And, if you happen to have the iPad only HD version of the game you can also challenge a live opponent to split screen mode on the same device.Â All in all Tiny Wings is still a prime example of what this style of game play can offer.
Well that wraps up another edition of games to watch on the App Store. As always, if thereâ€™s something youâ€™ve played recently that you feel should be part of this list, please leave a reply to this post. Previous weekly installments of our App Store Games Roundup:
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [7/06/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [6/08/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [5/17/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [4/28/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [4/13/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [3/15/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [2/19/16]
- 1o App Store Games To Watch [1/23/16]