Despite all my parents’ warnings, I’ve always loved playing with fire. The way the flames dance fascinates me and burning stuff is always fun. Verrry fun. And thanks to BulkyPix I can now do so on-the-go on my iPhone with Burn it All – Journey to the Sun – one of the most recent and highly acclaimed additions to the casual puzzle genre on the App Store.
I’m sure many of you were like me and grew up with one of the greatest marble / ball rolling games ever, Marble Madness. When I got my first iPod Touch there was no sign of Marble Madness, but I did pick up an interesting variant called HydroTilt. This made me even more anxious for my childhood video game friend. I’m still waiting for Marble Madness, but after spending some time with Gears that desire has been greatly subdued. Granted Gears doesn’t have some of the features like enemies that are out to get you, but what it does have is quite an experience indeed.
Few titles have left me with more fond memories than the good old Death Track – one of the first racing/shooting games ever. Unsurprisingly its top-down remake in the late 90s -Death Rally – immediately became my favourite pastime for hours on end. So when I heard that Remedy was bringing this classic to the iDevice, I was thrilled beyond imagination. My only concern was how Death Rally would transfer to the touchscreen.
Every so often, a top-notch title springs up out of the blue. Late 2009 one such game was Call of Duty: Zombies (TMA Review); in 2010 we had a number of surprise releases, and now in 2011, that distinction belongs to City of Secrets. This superb adventure game featuring the famous duo – Rex and Moles the Mole – has been waltzing across European TV shows for years and recently picked the iOS as their foothold for global stardom.
For the longest time, I’ve waited for a good squad-based tactical game on the iDevice. We’ve seen an assortment of tactical strategy titles but all are centered more on strategy than true squad-based tactical gameplay. Until now that is. Out of the blue, Rode Games has released a freemium spin on the genre – Hunters: Episode One – probably the first game that truly takes all of us X-Com and Jagged Alliance fans for a spin.
Looking at the power of modern mobile devices, it’s no wonder then that more and more of them are the target of developers, looking to get more life out of their classic titles. And this is even more true with the iOS family, with a single point of sales and an extremely low entry barrier – costing a measly $99 per year for a developer’s license. I can’t say that every such upgrade goes without a hitch, but that certainly doesn’t stop people from trying. Ascendancy has been universally praised back in the mid-90s and we’ll soon find out if it still has the spunk to reach out to today’s iOS gamers.
With all the major (hardcore) releases lately from big publishers, it’s easy to forget that not everybody looks for something that complicated in terms of gameplay on the iOS. While creating a runaway hit game that is wholeheartedly embraced by the masses is often difficult to achieve, the ones that do become a screaming success, like Doodle Jump or Cut the Rope. And almost out of the blue, a new star has risen on the horizon with the simple name – Tiny Wings.
For all you gamers who grew up during the ’90s, NBA JAM should be quite familiar to you (Boomshakalaka!). One of the most popular arcade titles to have ever been released, it was THE game to play back in the day, and now thanks to the folks at EA, it’s back with a vengeance on the iDevice.
EA is one of the few major publishers that have truly embraced the App Store. Even better, many of their titles truly set a quality benchmark for others to follow, from the classic boarding goodness of SCRABBLE to becoming the mayor in SimCity Deluxe to the parkour action of Mirror’s Edge. And now they’ve has set out to redefine the 3rd Person Shooter genre with the highly anticipated release of Dead Space.
In my interview with Charles Cecil (creator of Broken Sword: Director’s Cut) I asked him about the chance of other BS games coming to the iDevice. At that point he was still uncertain, but with the success and acclaim for his superb ports, it’s no wonder he followed through. And while Broken Sword – The Smoking Mirror does not boast the additional content of the first, the sequel has enough neat tricks, tweaks and updates to make it shine anew on the iDevice platform.