I’m generally not a big fan of the puzzle platform genre; it just feels somewhat outdated to me as a concept. I understand the nostalgia that powers a lot of the sales behind it, but am an alien to it myself. The truth is – almost everything that could have been dreamed up, already has been. Or so I thought before trying out Cavorite, a recent addition to the App Store with a unique concept wrapped beneath seemingly traditional graphics.
The extremely low entry barrier onto the iOS development scene ($99 and a Mac) is both a blessing and a curse for a number of reasons. On one hand it allows indie developers with original ideas to make a grab for the proverbial “millions”. On the other, a significant chunk of the 300K+ of apps on the App Store are complete and utter crap. That’s why sites like TMA exist – to sort through the dung to find the gold. Unfortunately, Cryptic Keep is not shiny…
Why did the chicken cross the road? If you’re doing your job right, you shouldn’t have to answer that question. Egg vs. Chicken is an interesting mash up of match 3 and tower defense that actually manages to blend the two genres fairly seamlessly. The cartoon quality visuals and 70s action TV show theme music make for a wacky atmosphere that serves a game like this well. I just wouldn’t expect too much depth from the game beyond trying to maximize your score via combos.
Physics puzzle games seem to be all the rage these days on the App Store, and one sub-genre that seems to be picking up steam is the concept of using the gravity of objects spread across the screen to get your characters to their destination. Not too long ago I reviewed a game called Sheepernova (TMA Review) that used this technique to great effect, and now to an extent I feel like I’m reliving that fun with Brave Ghost. The mechanics and some of the obstacles are different, but the goal of getting your avatar from point A to point B using the gravitational pull of objects is central to victory in this game. There are certainly some hair pulling moments, but overall it’s been a lot of fun.
Most puzzle games that revolve around trains deal with you trying to keep the trains from crashing. In From A to B, however, the trains are merely the main obstacle. Your goal is to get a single car from point A to point B without it crashing or running out of fuel. While I’ve struggled to get into many of the “don’t crash the train” puzzle games, I’ve found this one quite intriguing so far. It’s certainly one of the most challenging ones that I’ve played to date, and I love the fact that it relies on careful ingenuity, and not your ability to beat a clock by chucking random parts on a track, in order to truly be victorious.
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.
Due to the nature of the App Store, for every game you’ve heard of there are literally hundreds that get swept under the rug, both good and bad. Sheepernova is one such game, and to be perfectly frank, I pretty much dismissed it myself when I first saw it. Once I actually tried it, however, I realized there was a decent game that just needed the highly coveted item called exposure. That’s exactly what I hope to do by bringing you this review. Games like this are exactly why mobile device companies should encourage a thriving indie development community.
The App Store is heaven for all things creative and a unique opportunity for developers to sell an original idea at a very low staring cost. Thanks to this we’ve seen a bunch of simple but addictive games created by one-two man teams that have found phenomenal success. The latest one, exploiting the cute and cuddly but hungry concept is Catch The Candy, released under the patronage of Bulkypix, a publisher you should definitely keep your eye on. Lately they’ve released some superb titles and seem to be well on their way to rival Chillingo and Gameloft.
I don’t know about you, but I hate bugs. Passionately and of all shapes and sizes. For people like me the App Store has a myriad of bug-killing games. But Cyan, the legendary makers of Myst (TMA Review) and Riven: The Sequel to Myst (TMA Review) have gone one step further and actually made it a fun and entertaining artillery puzzler out of the concept of flinging bugs into space. Ready, aim, chuck!
Apparently quite satisfied with the performance of Gobliiins (TMA Review) on the App Store, DotEmu with the support of BulkyPix, have decided to go ahead and release the second part of the series, detailing the misadventures of the goblins. True to the spirit of the franchise, Gobliins 2 puts you in control of a duo of characters on a quest to solve devious riddles and rescue the prince.