What do you get when you take two artists from a well known company and set them on their own to design mobile games? Apparently you get a family friendly cave flyer style game that takes place under water with fish. Fin Friends is one of those games that are nice, but other than some flashy graphics it doesn’t do much to differentiate itself from the pack. If you like cave flyer or infinite runner style games you’ll enjoy Fin Friends, but don’t expect to see any revolutionary game play elements here.
It’s kind of funny that some of my favorite games this week were ones that I either thought I wouldn’t like or had no intention of trying in the first place. Smile Plants is a match 3 game from Gamevil, so it’s already new territory for them. The object of the game is to build up a diverse and thriving garden, which personally sounded like a lot less fun then the game actually ended up being. If you’re still not ready to trust me on that one, how about Madman Drop? This is an infinite faller which once I decided to try it managed to capture my attention right away thanks to its unique control scheme. You simply hold the screen to stretch the main character and let go to have him curl up. Not only does it make for some amusing movements, but when timed correctly can be quite a boost in your descent.
8 Ball Pool, arguably the best Pool game on iOS and the rare online-only title that’s monopolized much of my free time over the past 2 months, has been updated and in the process, given what most of its players have been yearning for since its release – an offline mode. Previously only available for play when online, Miniclip has added the option to “Practice Offline”, thus allowing ball-stroking addicts to get their fill while Wifi or 3/4G data isn’t readily available.
I think this might be one of the kookiest collections of games I’ve compiled in a while. My biggest addiction this week came from the card game inspired Rocket Patrol. There’s an online mode so you can take on the human element, but what really got me was trying to beat the computer AI, which I still haven’t been able to accomplish. If you’re more interested in challenging your dexterity than you’ll really want to tackle Tilt Universe. It feels like a Wii mini-game, but manages to up the challenge level a few notches. As an added bonus, I’ve even decided to make the intro image a game. The picture belongs to a game that was released this week, but I haven’t linked to it or written about it in this roundup. Can you figure out what the game is?
Now that developers are comfortable with the iOS platform and have realized how well it works for adventure games we’re starting to see a lot more original content come to Apple’s mobile devices. One of the latest entries in the genre is The Silent Age, and it’s clear the folks behind this game know a thing or two about what made the old Sierra classics great. If I had to come up with a down side, it’s that the game was over just as it was reaching its peak. Thankfully the developers are already hard at work on a sequel, though, so even that little inconvenience will be rectified at some point.
Once again I’ve tried to bring you a nice variety of games to consider this week, and you’ll be happy to know that there are no infinite runners on my list this time around. There is a rather addictive strategy game called Tower Zoo, however. The mechanics are simple, there are plenty of levels to challenge you, and when you get done whopping – or getting whopped – by the computer AI you can take on your neighbor in pass and play mode. If you’re more of a “poker with an edge” sort of player you should consider taking Alice of Hearts for a spin. This game has puts an interesting twist on the Wonderland fable, it has a pretty slick presentation, and it does a good job of using poker hands for combat that feels different than other games of its style. If you’re just looking for some visceral action then Fisticuffs: An Arcade Boxing Game might fit the bill. It’s a simple boxing game with a small but diverse roster of fighters that’s fun and could be something great if people play it and encourage the developers to add more to it.
Ravenous Games has a decent collection of retro-looking casual games piling up in their catalog, though I’d wager that they are best known for their League of Evil series. Gravity.Duck is nothing like those games aside from the graphics style. For some reason that bothered me at first, but it didn’t take long until I got completely hooked on this one. In fact, I think I’ve played it more than both of the League Of Evil games combined. Ravenous has one again nailed the art of the casual gaming experience, and I for one am happy to indulge.
I bet you know where this intro is going, but just in case you’re a bit skeptical, this was another week full of new iOS game releases. The folks over at Warner Brothers actually managed to release a decent brawler focused on an alternate D.C. universe where no one knows who the good and bad guys are. In Injustice: Gods Among Us you’ll take control of anyone from Superman to Harley Quinn as you duke it out in teams of three to see who reigns supreme when there are no rules. If you like shooting gallery style games then the clear choice for you this week is Overkill 2. This sequel ups the ante in many ways, but most importantly it offers more than 30 weapons with lots of customization options. Adventure game fans might want to dig in to Paradigm Shift, as long as you don’t mind the whole “zombie apocalypse” theme. In addition to actually having consequences for your actions, the game offers multiple endings for those so inclined to seek them out.
As always I’ve tried to bring you a diverse list of games this week, though looking back through the titles it seems a decent portion of them have some sort of RPG elements in them. For those looking for a basic brawler with some attitude, you might give WWE Presents: Rockpocalypse a try. The premise is silly and the dialog does get repetitive before long, but the fact that the game doesn’t take itself seriously actually makes it palatable to play. If you prefer your action with a little more of a western tilt then Gamevil has Lost Memory for your perusal. The game offers both sword slashing and gun slinging combat action, as well as a “am I the good guy or bad guy” storyline. Maybe you want your combat to be a little more tribal instead? Tribe Survival is an interesting alternative that’s not quite like anything else I’ve played on the App Store.
EA has launched their 4th annual “Sweet Deals” iOS sale just ahead of Easter weekend, with nearly all their iPhone and iPad games on sale for $0.99. Big name titles like FIFA SOCCER 13, Need for Speed Most Wanted and Bejeweled HD can all be yours for a buck. Meanwhile, everyone’s favorite word game Bookworm and Chillingo’s Monster Truck Destruction (a subsidiary of EA) are currently free for a limited time. Now would be a great time to stock up on some of the games you’ve had your eye on, or gift them on iOS 6 to someone special for Easter. The full roundup of links after the gap.