Is it over yet? I hate to keep harping on this Flappy Bird fad, but all the annoying clones make it really hard for me to find new quality games. Anyway, Chillingo’s release for the week was a Duck Hunt style game call Duck Destroyer, which at first begged the question “why?” in my mind. Once I played it, however, I realized it was one of the best of the genre that I’ve played on my iOS devices so far. If you like simple card games but don’t want to admit to playing solitaire, 9-line is a great alternative. It’s easy to learn, supports both single and multiplayer modes, and even throws a little strategy in to boot. For the budding zoologists in the crowd Nimble Bit offers Disco Zoo. Unlike most zoo simulators I actually enjoyed this one for more than 5 minutes, in large part due to the fact that you actually have to find the animals that you’ll place in your zoo.
Despite the fact that about 30% of the new release entries seem to be Flappy Bird clones, I did manage to find what I think is a rather interesting collection of iOS games for your idle time. In addition to the games I’ve detailed below, Chilibite Entertainment released Tower Tapper, a NinJump style game where you try and help a snail reach his date. The concept is cute, the graphics are well done and it’s actually pretty fun. I also quite enjoyed Bridge Me, a simple game about trying to help a man build bridges to get across chasms. There’s not much variation to game play, the graphics are simple and there are no achievements or power ups, yet it still held my attention a lot longer than Flappy Bird did. And, for those that like to get back to the basics Chillingo released a silly matching game called Jelly Love. The main gimmick is that you can move a block around anywhere instead of just swapping with its neighbor, and the jellies are just really cute.
You know the drill. A lot of games came out, I checked out as many as I could, and now I’m telling you about 10 that I think might be worth your while. Once I get back into the swing of things these intros might get more elaborate again, but until then let’s just get on to the games…
Amongst all of my past console excursions, the one that I remember with the most fondness was my time spent playing my Nintendo Entertainment System. A franchise that kept me entertained if not a bit frustrated was Ninja Gaiden, the tale of a ninja named Ryu that kicked butt and liked to do back flips. At first glance one might feel that Shadow Blade is a modern interpretation of this classic series, and there’s nothing wrong with that. After spending some time with the game I’m not so sure if it’s meant to be an homage to or simply inspired by the old favorites, but either way the game is quite entertaining. It also manages to pretty much conquer the issues most action games have with controls on a touch screen device.
While some developers have come a long way towards making playable FPS games on touch screen devices, the shooting gallery style game is really a much more pleasant experience for said hardware. One franchise in particular that has always brought entertaining installments to this genre is Moorhuhn, aka Crazy Chicken depending on where you live in the world. One recent edition to the franchise is Crazy Chicken: Pirates for iOS devices, which as of the writing of this article has been subtitled Christmas Edition for the holidays. It has all the wackiness you’d expect if you were familiar with the brand, and three different game play modes to boot.
I’ve been pondering how to keep this review from sounding like a simple retread of the first installment, but that might be a bit of a losing battle. Thankfully that’s not entirely a bad thing because the original Nightmares From The Deep was definitely one of my favorite G5 offerings, and so far the sequel has been just as entertaining. The protagonist Sarah Black is back, as is the slimy sea serpent Davey Jones. The backstory is different, but ultimately it’s still you against evil incarnate with a healthy dose of exploration, puzzle solving and mini-games coming your way. Are you ready to match wits with the stuff of legends once again?
If you’ve played the original Air Supply (and shame on the infinite runner lovers that haven’t) then a lot of this will feel familiar. Sam is back, but his perspective has changed a bit, or more appropriately he’s finding himself going around in circles. Air Supply – Infinite is just as fun as the original, and the best part is it maintains the unlock system that kept me going back to the original for more. I’ve always maintained that even the best developers will falter once in a while, but so far Quantum Sheep has not let me down.
Games like Diablo certainly popularized the concept, but in my opinion one of the earliest examples of a good action / RPG was The Legend Of Zelda. There have been many installments in the franchise, but more importantly there have been a ton of wannabes made in an attempt to provide the same type of game to non-Nintendo platforms. Some of them have succeeded to a limited degree, but Oceanhorn is one of the few to do so in both mechanics and spirit, and probably the only one for the iOS platform so far. Apparently you don’t need a tri-force for this type of game to be fun.
So I was asked if I could try to compile a list of what I thought were the best games of 2013. To be perfectly honest, that’s a pretty hard thing for me to do, especially given the fact that I rarely get the chance to finish most of the games I play. Instead, I’m going to present to you a list of games that are definitely top notch and that I think I worth investing your time in. They may not necessarily be the best of their breed, but they are ones that stick out in my mind for one reason or another. And be warned right now, there will probably be some that you’d expect to see on this list that won’t show up, in large part because I probably have not even played them yet. Now that we have the ground work laid, let’s get on to the games…
Honey Tribe Studios has an interesting way of making social commentary, first on the plight of bees and then on the state of humanity as it revolves around money. Their latest effort focuses specifically on the Christmas season, and while it may not be a message you want to hear it’s sadly true. It’s also an entertaining game, at least in small bursts. Can you help turn the tide of commercialism this holiday season?