Being addicted to Age of Zombies on the iPhone can be proved to be rather detrimental to my console experience on the PS3. I bought a copy of Dead Rising 2 on the cheap the other day (USD 26.90 at Play-Asia, click here) and I found that even though the premise is somewhat similar (shooting and whacking the crap out of zombies), I really miss the hyper-kinetic violence accorded by AoZ.
Dead Rising 2 felt sluggish and while it attempts to portray somewhat realistically what would happen if you were to lift up a water barrel beat the shit out a zombie, it’s just simply too slow. Just give me the gun-totting combat from AoZ and I’ll be a happy camper. One thing that games on the iPhone have yet to deliver (for me) is the open world experience accorded by games such as Fallout 3 and Red Dead Redemption.
How about you? How has handheld gaming changed your console gaming experience?
Fans of Toco Games’ Pocket Monster virtual pet app for the iPhone/iPod touch, boy do they have a Christmas present for you over at their website. For those who haven’t got the game, you can take it as a demo/preview . Check it out over here: http://www.tocogames.com/Present.html
Merry Christmas to you readers of Nine Over Ten 9/10 Let’s kick start the Christmas coverage with some news on the indie gaming front. Metaversal Studios have just released a new update to the game Frank Further for the iPhone/iPod touch. By bringing the game up to speed to version 1.2, players will now have access to Game Center, complimenting the existing OpenFeint support. Check out the press release on version 1.2 of the game for further details:
METAVERSAL STUDIOS “FRANK FURTHER” 1.2.1 NOW INCLUDES GAME CENTER
DECEMBER 23, 2010 Metaversal Studios, developers of games for the iOS platform including “Bad Apples”, “Peel It” and “GameRoom”, are thrilled to announce their latest update to the tilt-control game “Frank Further”. The biggest addition to the new version of “Frank Further” is the integration of Game Center support, allowing fans of “Frank Further” to sync achievements and rank on high score leaderboards through the native iOS online game network.
“Frank Further” has always included support for OpenFeint, the widely popular online gaming network that connects players to friends and random opponents for multiplayer games. OpenFeint also gives game developers the opportunity to establish ‘achievements’ or trophies that players can unlock by accomplishing certain game mechanisms or awards. Mobile gamers appreciate iOS games that offer such online features because this model mirrors online networks available in popular console games on the Xbox 360 and PS3 consoles.
While “Frank Further” does not currently offer a multiplayer option, fans of the tilt--control launcher game can now track high scores and unlock awards through both OpenFeint and Game Center. The developers at Metaversal Studios are excited for the potential of incorporating Game Center into other existing iOS games as well as new projects in the future.
Of the latest update to “Frank Further”, Metaversal Studios Art Director Dave Landry says, “We’re always trying to stay on the bleeding edge of the mobile gaming market, and we are looking forward to the wider gamer appeal that Game Center integration will add to our games.” Metaversal Studios develops games for iOS and other online game platforms. In addition to “Frank Further”, games by Metaversal Studios include “Bad Apples”, “Shave Me!”, “GameRoom”, “Peel It”, “Turkeys in Time” and the game that inspired “Frank Further”, “Hot Dog Down a Hallway”.
This is probably the first time a rubber band brand has an iPhone game tie-in. Silly Bandz, in conjunction with Zoo Games have come up with a platformer featuring Stella the Puppy, the official Silly Bandz mascot. Check out the Press Release below for further details:
SILLY BANDZ: THE GAME NOW AVAILABLE ON THE APP STORE
This year’s pop culture phenomenon is now an exciting app adventure! Zoo Publishing today announced that Silly Bandz: The Game is now available for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Stella the Puppy, the official Silly Bandz mascot, greets players when they arrive at Silly Bandz Magical Island. The cute canine helps players learn to shoot Silly Bandz across 30 different beach, forest and volcano environments to collect mysterious Silly Starz and special Silly Bandz hidden around the island.
To gather all 40 Silly Bandz shapes found on Magical Island, players must strategically select from the Silly Bandz they’ve collected based on their weight, size and bounciness. As levels become more challenging, Stella the Puppy helps players learn how to use heavy objects to clear a path, harness rockets for a powerful speed boost, or blow Silly Bandz a little bit further by taking advantage of a well-positioned fan.
There’s something very satisfying about blowing stuff up, and that makes Demolition Master: Space Quest for the iPhone a deeply satisfying game. As you can guess from the title, the game involves blowing structures up by way of explosives. Essentially a physics based puzzle game, players set a number of charges on a 2D structure and blow it up. The resulting pile of debris must match or be lower than the height threshold set in each level.
In some levels, the challenge gets ratcheted up in a sense that resulting debris cannot move beyond a certain width threshold. Also certain pillars cannot be blown up, leaving players with a challenge on how to bring down an entire structure while working with just several destroyable pillars. While the game won’t make you a demolition engineer anytime soon, the myriad of levels (180 of ‘em), spread across locations around the world and on the Moon (!) definitely offers a lot of re-playability for a low price of USD 1.99.
Disney Mobile is on a roll this Christmas season, following up their special holiday pricing for their premium iPhone apps with the release of Tapulous’ (a division of Disney Mobile) Tap Tap Revenge 4. Check out the press release for the launch, which includes the complete list of Disney Mobile apps discounted to USD 0.99 each, right after the promo video for TT4.
Tap Tap Revenge 4 Launches on App Store Just in Time for Christmas Popular App Franchise Poised to Rule the Holiday Charts with Exclusive New Tracks and Social Features
PALO ALTO, Calif.– Tapulous, part of Disney Mobile, is extending its wildly popular Tap Tap Revenge franchise in time for Christmas with the launch of Tap Tap Revenge 4, which is now available for free on the App Store. Featuring new tracks from Linkin Park, Katy Perry, Benny Benassi, My Chemical Romance, Kid Cudi, Justin Timberlake, Daft Punk, Train, Far East Movement, Hinder, Edward Maya, Selena Gomez & the Scene, Florence and the Machine, Cee-Lo, Nicki Minaj, Young MC, and Bad Religion, the flagship music rhythm game continues the tradition of showcasing new hits from today’s biggest musical acts.
Tap Tap Revenge 4 introduces an all-new arcade mode, high-resolution Retina Display graphics and Game Center integration, allowing players to challenge others, share scores via Facebook, Twitter and email, “like” a track in the Tapulous network and see which tracks are “trending” in the community. The Tap Tap Revenge franchise that helped define the music game category on the App Store and is an enormous hit with fans, having earned 40 million app downloads, 25 million songs sold and one billion games played to-date.
“Tap Tap Revenge 4 is a triumphant new addition to the hugely successful Tap Tap Revenge franchise,” said Bart Decrem, senior vice president and general manager, Disney Mobile. “Tap Tap Revenge has been a top ranked app over the past two holiday seasons, and this Christmas we’re excited to offer fans and new players alike some great new features, awesome free tracks and the ability to connect to Facebook and Twitter.”
“We’re always looking for innovative ways for people to engage with our music,” says Tap Tap Revenge 4 feature artist Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington. “Tap Tap Revenge offers a massive platform that’s at the forefront of music games and apps.” Tap Tap Revenge 4 features a wide array of free and premium song packs and artist bundles available through in app purchase as well as a number of free song titles and popular indie channels.
A sample of the new music content includes:
Linkin Park six-song bundle featuring “Crawling,” “Breaking The Habit,” “The Catalyst,” “What I’ve Done,” “Faint” and “New Divide”
Katy Perry 10-song bundle featuring “California Gurls,” “Circle The Drain,” “Firework,” “Hot N Cold,” “I Kissed A Girl,” “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.),” “One Of The Boys,” “Teenage Dream,” “Thinking of You” and “Waking Up In Vegas”
My Chemical Romance four-song bundle featuring “Welcome To the Black Parade,” “Teenagers,” “Helena” and “The Only Hope For Me Is You”
A dance bundle that includes “Forget You” by Cee Lo, “Night By Night” by Chromeo, “D.A.N.C.E.” by Justice, “I’m Good, I’m Gone” by Lykke Li, “New Shoes” by Paolo Nutini • Benny Benassi’s “House Music”
Justin Timberlake bundle featuring “Rock That Body” and “SexyBack (ft. Timbaland)”
Nelly two-song bundle featuring “Just A Dream” and “Country Grammar”
Far East Movement’s “Rocketeer” and “Like A G6”
Florence and the Machine two-song bundle featuring “The Dog Days are Over” and “Cosmic Love”
Kid Cudi two-song bundle featuring “Erase Me” (feat. Kayne West) and “Day N Nite (Crookers Remix)”
Selena Gomez & the Scene bundle featuring “Naturally” and “A Year Without Rain”
Exclusive new hit Indie Channels for free game play and browsing featuring EPITAPH, VAGRANT, SONGS Music Publishing and HUNNYPOT. Key artists: Bad Religion, Alkaline Trio, Tokyo Police Club, Thrice, DJ Wool, Teenage Bottlerocket.
I’m pretty sure that most Flash-games fans would have played the seminal “Whack-the-Pingu” game, ok, I shouldn’t have gone as far as labeling as seminal, it was a game that involved smacking a penguin with a bat to see how far it flew. No worries, no penguins were harmed in the game, the little fella always came back for seconds…and thirds…etc. But one thing is for sure, without “Whack-the-Pingu”, we wouldn’t have excellent time wasters such as this new minted game for the iPhone, Berzerk Ball.
Based on a popular Flash game in its own right, Berzerk Ball asks the simple question of how far can a geek fly when he’s smacked with a variety of implements such as a baseball bat, canoe paddle and other stuff. The game’s controls are really simple, tap twice at the start to set the angle and power and once the geek is flying through the air, control him mid air for longer range. Sometimes, you get to hit the geek again as he’s just about to land on the ground.
The level, a.k.a Berzerk Land, seems to be populated randomly with stuff and the game’s 2D graphics engine seems to handle this with aplomb with the occasional slowdown. There are birds, robots and even moving blobs of blue slime in which if hit by the Geek will cause him to fly further.
Depending on how far the geek flew, players are awarded cash and XP points. Cash is used to purchase items and weapons whereas XP points are used to upgrade the player character. Speaking of player characters, there are a host of them to choose from, some of which are unlocked once you have hit a certain distance with a particular character. The game features Game Center connectivity and as you can guess already, this game is packed with Achievements.
The geek himself can be a sarcastic bastard, often with comments appearing before and after he gets smacked. One cool touch from the developers is that players can leave their own “Geek” comments and get a chance to have them published in the game in the next update.
I enjoyed beating the heck out the geek and his penchant for seconds is certainly admirable. And like I’ve said, this game is an excellent time waster. Berzerk Ball is now available on the App Store for USD 0.99. Check it out over here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id406919685?mt=8. 4/5 STARS. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Not everyday you get to review a game with a 21-page in-game manual. But to be fair, Hanto seems be a complex board game on the iPhone and the amount of detail that went into the manual is something be admired. The game itself however is a bit of an enigma, with the gameplay mechanics being rather oddball. For starters, it plays a little like “Go”, except that it is played with hex shaped pieces, with the objective of “surrounding” the opposing player’s “Queen” piece, otherwise known as the Butterfly.
Assisting the player in this task are several other pieces, such as the Dove, the Sparrow, the Horse and the Crane. Some of these pieces have the ability to jump across a number of hex tiles, while some can only walk. These pieces cannot be moved until the Butterfly is placed on the board and this must be done before turn 4 (remember that I say the mechanics are a little oddball?). On the plus side, the pieces surrounding the Butterfly need not be your own pieces, the opponent’s pieces surrounding his/her Butterly can prove to be their downfall.
Even at the easiest level I learned that the game is not a push-over. I’ve been into a couple of ties (whereby both our Butterflies got surrounded at the same time) and on several other occasions, I failed to move my pieces away from my Butterfly to avoid being surrounded by my own tiles, all the AI had to do was to plug in the gap with a single tile and it was game over.
While the game tries to be beginner friendly, all with the manual and info tips, Hanto’s target audience lay in the hardcore strategists crowd and they should find themselves at home with this game. There’s also practically nothing to lose as the full game is available free of charge on the App Store. Check it out here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hanto-free-amazing-hex-board/id407653571?mt=8. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED (only the hardcore need apply)
Hmm…some of these puzzle games on the iPhone require the reflexes of a cat, but cats don’t play on a touchscreen do they? Symbol6Redux by Gogogic is a puzzle matching game for the iPhone and the gameplay mechanics require fast hand-eye coordination on part of the player. Taking charge of a set of tiles located in the middle of the screen, players are supposed to swap the tiles around to match the incoming tiles coming in from the edges of the screen.
Occasionally a bad tile will come along and players will have to tilt the set of tiles to block off the bad tile. Causing an incoming tile to collide against a tile of a different type will result in the health bar being deducted. The game gets faster as the levels progress and if you were to see me playing the game, it’s will look like a frantic mess trying to get the tiles right. Even though it’s kinda like raining puzzle games on Nine Over Ten 9/10, Symbol6 Redux managed to give a pretty good account for itself, and as an added bonus, the game is free!
It looks like video game publishers are slashing their prices like crazy on the App Store during the holiday season, with EA leading the charge. EA Mobile has 70+ games for on sale at the moment, priced at a very sweet and very tempting 99 cents each. Notables include Need for Speed Hot Pursuit, FIFA 11, NBA Elite 11 and Madden NFL 11. I ended up buying 6 EA Mobile games during this sale, check it out over here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/electronic-arts/id284800461
GAMEVIL too is having its holiday season sale, which started yesterday. Here’s your chance to grab titles such as Zenonia 1 & 2, ILLUSIA, HYBRID 1 & 2, Soccer Superstars, VANQUISH, Baseball Superstars and their latest title, NOM at discounted prices: http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/gamevil-inc/id299302366