This was an interesting week. A couple of big players released what felt like low key properties, and some indies released some interesting looking titles that will unfortunately probably get passed over. Topping the list is Capcom Arcade, one of Capcom’s first ventures into the world of freemium iPhone gaming. This emulator includes an initial lineup of hits like 1942 and Street Fighter 2, and is free to play for 3 games a day. If your retro fetish falls more in line with job based oldies then you might want to check out Paperboy: Special Delivery, Glu’s modern take on the 80’s classic inspired by the job held by pre-teen boys across the country. For something a bit darker you might want to check out Necronomicon, an interesting card / board game / RPG based off the works of H.P. Lovecraft. Finally, for the social strategist there’s foursqWAR, a tactical war game plastered on top of the Foursquare social network.
What an interesting week this was. Being Halloween week there was naturally an influx of zombie games. However, the big news came in the revitalization of a 10 year old Dreamcast game – ChuChu Rocket. This puzzle game is available for all iDevices, sports plenty of game play modes, and allows you to play 4 players on the same device if you own an iPad. If you’re into galaxy spanning crusades then Fishlabs has you covered with Galaxy on Fire 2, the sequel to their popular 3D shooter / simulation game Galaxy On Fire 3D. Gun Bros is one of the latest dual stick shooters to hit iOS devices, and it’s unique 2 player game system allows you to wrack up experience even when you’re not actually playing the game. And, if you haven’t gotten enough of the Duke Nukem wanna-be Barry Steakfries there’s Age of Zombies, the “re-imagining” of their popular 2D sprinter Monster Dash.
Reckless Racing tops the interest chart this week. The top down racer from EA Mobile sports some pretty slick visuals, two online game play modes, and a unique offline mode that has you making deliveries while you’re racing. Hack ‘n slash fanatics will want to check out Samurai II: Vengeance. This sequel has all the bloody combat of the original, supplemented with environmental puzzles and traps that must be avoided. The budding space pilot should check out Star Battalion, Gameloft’s entry in the “lone rebel against the armada” outer space epic. The interesting twist in this variant is that you can play the game co-operatively with a friend over the internet or locally. RPG fans should check out Puzzle Quest HD, the RPG that uses match 3 mechanics for combat. The iPad version contains the elusive chapter 3 that has yet to make it to the iPhone.
This week a couple of popular franchises were extended. Ngmoco double dipped this week, first by releasing We Doodle. Though it starts with “We” it’s not really like any of the other games in the series, as it’s a multi-player internet enabled Pictionary style game. In the mean time they also snuck in Godfinger All Stars, the sequel to their popular god game Godfinger. If you haven’t gotten enough of the circular yellow disc with an eye yet, Namco has created yet another offshoot of the Pac-Man franchise, Pac-Attack. If you’re looking for a unique RPG experience you might want to try Journey Of Fortune for the iPad, a combination RPG and board game that uses a spinner instead of dice. Nothing says modern technology like a concept patterned after non-electronic entertainment.
For those that are into fast moving, anthropomorphic animals – or for the folks that are big console gamers over the age of 20 – SEGA did you all a wonderful service by releasing the long awaited 4th chapter in the Sonic The Hedgehog series. Now if you’d rather blow up things with big guns than save cute little woodland creatures, Modern Combat 2: Black Pegasus might be more your style. Want to explore a vast fantasy world with friends and strangers? TibiaME MMO will provide you with 100′s of quests to solve, while Seven Swords brings 120 person PvP combat in 3D playing fields. And there are a few other games on the list, too.
This week seemed to be more about the little guy than about big players releasing anticipated games. From the fine folks at Team Phobic we have GravBot, a freemium title about a little robot that can alter gravity and is on a mission to collect batteries. If you’re into line drawing and tower defense there’s Towers Vs. Dragons, the game that lets you construct the defenses and then lead the bad guys right into them. For RPG fans FDG has released Across Age HD, the iPad version of their Zelda clone that has lots of environmental puzzles and lets you switch between 2 characters. Finally, for the zombie lovers Appy Entertainment has provided a special treat in All-In-1 ZombieBox, a collection of 10 zombie apps that will keep you entertained with the undead for hours.
This week I went a little heavier on the iPad games because you guys need some lovin’ too, but there’s still some pretty cool selections for the small screen iDevice wielders as well. Making a big splash this week is the second entry in Gameloft’s hit crime simulation series, Gangstar: Miami Vindication. For the “we want Facebook type games” crowd there’s Ngmoco’s next freemium offering, We City. Sports fans can sink their teeth into Real Soccer 2011, which even intrigues me despite the fact that I’m more of a couch potato than an athlete. Finally, for the cooking freak that would like something a bit more grown up than Cooking Mama there’s Hell’s Kitchen Vs. HD, the game that lets you get insulted by Gordon Ramsey and steal ingredients from your opponent. Bon Appetite!
I think the talk of the town this past week was Pocket Frogs, a game that’s probably making its developer more money via in-app purchases (IAP) than most games make through a simple up front price tag. Apparently the concept of breeding frogs electronically is a lot more appealing than I would have expected. If you’d like something a little more action oriented Namco certainly delivers with the sequel to its popular rails shooter, Time Crisis 2nd Strike. On the other hand, if your tastes are more cerebral than you might want to check out the puzzle game Beyond Ynth, the story of a bug on a mission. And for those that are still hoping your iDevice will turn into a PC some day there’s EA’s latest installment of their popular Sims franchise, Sims 3 Ambitions.
If you’re into quirky action RPGs with lots of story and even more combat, Gamevil is once again ready to fulfill your needs with Hybrid 2, the sequel to their popular side scrolling hack ‘n slash RPG. If you’re more into some serene town building there’s Virtual City from G5, one of only a couple competitors to the empire that is SimCity. On the other hand, if you just feel like wreaking havoc from above you can amuse yourself with Pigeon Squadron, the aerial fowl fighter from I-Play. Finally, for the nostalgia minded EA offers Lite-Brite, a trip to simpler childhood days when little pegs of glowing light were enough to amaze the most curious of individuals.
This week was a double home run for iPhone gamers, and I’m not sure which item is bigger news. The fan favorite, I’m sure, is Mirror’s Edge (TMA Review), the long awaited “running with a purpose” game from Electronic Arts. On the flip side is my personal interest of the week, Spider-man: Total Mayhem from Gameloft, a game that takes place in the Ultimate Spiderman universe and looks like it could be one of the best outings for the webbed wall crawler to date. For budding space traders there’s Star Shipping Inc, the latest entry in the growing field of buy low, sell high space games to arrive on the iPhone. Finally, RPG fans are in for a real treat with Rimelands: Hammer Of Thor (TMA Review), brought to you from the fine developers that created Ravensword (TMA Review). Sadly there is no intriguing zombie related news this week, though I did finally get to try Zombie Infection from Gameloft, and I definitely recommend it.