Archive for the ‘Arcade’ Category

Radiant

Saturday, November 7th, 2009

This game is like Galaga with upgrades. It starts out really slow, by design, because over time you purchase tons of upgrades for your ship and weapons to become an uber-destructoid. They aren’t balanced perfectly and switching to a new weapon borks your upgrades, but the game is still fun. The soundtrack is outstanding; downtempo blip-hop feels perfect for the game.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ icon
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Boost 3D

Friday, November 6th, 2009

Fly down the tunnel, hit the speed boost arrows, and don’t hit any obstacles. Really well done.

Rating: ★★★½☆ icon
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Silver Skull: Rise of the Pirate King

Friday, September 11th, 2009

This is full-on arcade-style cannon-blast-fest. Hold your finger in on or past the target ship and repeated fireballs tear through the target. The accelerometer controls the path of the ship, which works just fine. Land masses can block your path, as do floating barrels, but a number of ship upgrades remedy that. The heavy cannon fires over islands and blast kegs destroy floating obstacles. Many upgrades are one-offs, so you need to refill them after each mission, but you can buy multiples, if you have the requisite amount of doubloons in your coffers. Using upgrades, you can also present the illusion that you are a ghost ship, so the enemy stops firing, or curse the opposing ships, so they remain stationary for your barrage of artillery fire. If you manage your resources well enough, you can even purchase bigger and better ships. Oh, and if you have a true excess of funds or feel like taking a gamble, you can visit the hot wenches in town for a random “gift”. All in all, I would say the devs did exactly what they set out to do, create a fast-paced naval game with a few interesting decisions. It’ll be off my iPhone, after this review, but it was okay while it lasted.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ icon
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Mr. Driller

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009

This was a phenomenal game that I played on the Dreamcast years ago, which was originally intended to be a sequel for Namco’s Dig Dug,but ended up taking on a life of its own. You guide your little miner deeper and deeper into the vertical cavern, by drilling the rocks apart and collecting air capsules. I must warn fans of the original that the controls on the iPhone don’t feel nearly responsive enough.

Mini Golf Wacky Worlds

Sunday, August 9th, 2009

Outstanding Mini-Putt game! Vibrant colors, characters oozing with personality (eww), creative full-on 3D level design, and simple, intuitive controls. There are several diversely themed courses, several game modes (although they don’t seem to add that much), and a pro shop, where the player can purchase functional and/or vanity items. This game is far superior to every other direct competitor in the app store, currently.

Update: Some of the levels can be pretty frustrating, due to the insane timing needed. I hate you ice level. Down a star!

Rating: ★★★★☆ icon
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The Deep Pinball

Tuesday, August 4th, 2009

From the makers of Wild West Pinball, comes The Deep. Just as polished as the previous title, this game offers a multi-screen, single-table pinball experience with great physics and replayability. The table is just off-center, which makes me a bit seasick, but maybe that was the intent. This shot doesn’t so it justice at all; you really need to see the whole table.

Rating: ★★★½☆ icon
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Bomb Commander

Saturday, August 1st, 2009

This is a really fast-paced tap shooter, with good enemy design and core mechanics. If you’ve ever played Sneezies or Bugz, you are familiar with chain reaction gameplay caused by triggering a sequence of explosions. The devs on this title decided to wrap a full-featured game around the mechanic and they were very successful. The player must protect the earth from various enemies that plummet towards its surface. Your ammo is limited, but is refreshed by powerups that drop (earth shield powerups drop too). Different enemies require different tactics; little enemies can trigger chain reactions (that provide an escalating score multiplier that is lost if a single one penetrates the shield), aircraft dart around and must be tapped directly, and the mothership needs to have power units destroyed into order for the shields to drop. This game is really fast-paced and fun.

Rating: ★★★½☆ icon
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Space Invaders Infinity Gene

Saturday, July 25th, 2009

This game is great. I’m not joking. They turned Space Invaders into a Bullet Hell shooter and it is a blast, has tons of levels, killer powerups, and it makes clever use of your iTunes library.

Update: This extraordinary game just got better: Now OpenFeint enabled, with leaderboard and achievements, facebook and twitter connectivity, additional stages, and “evolved” music stages.

Rating: ★★★★★ icon
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Crush Bunny

Sunday, July 12th, 2009

It’s hilarious, it’s polished, the artwork is outstanding, the achievements are killer, and the soundtrack alone is worth the dollar. I still don’t always know WTF is going on, but I don’t care. The goal is to keep the quirky little robotic bunnies from getting crushed by meteors that drop from the sky and, just like in real life, you control exactly where the meteors will drop. Wait…

So, bunnies of all sizes and dispositions wander around the bottom of the screen. An arrow appears at the top of the screen that represents when and where the meteor will drop; “when” is shown by a timer and “where” is controlled by the accelerometer. If it hits bunnies, they take damage. Oftentimes, they are crushed to death. YES!!!

For each meteor that drops, you earn cash (again, just like real life). You spend this cash on bunny first aid, bunny housing of various strengths, and various other defensive goodies that open up as you earn more money. That’s not all; there are powerups that float by on tap-to-pop balloons, that can be picked up to enter a variety of mini-games…one of the powerups is a BAZOOKA and the other powerup is a DISCO BALL. This could have been a one-sentence review, had I thought to mention these two key points first. Not much depth, but who really cares? The biggest problem I’ve found is that I can’t seem to figure out how to lose. It just goes on forever. This makes it funny for the first few games, but doesn’t make you come back for more.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ icon
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Zombies vs. Sheep

Saturday, July 11th, 2009

A very plausible story, zombie puppets dropping from the sky to kill sheep, and simple, tap-to-shoot gameplay make this just barely hit the “worth a buck” category. The upgrade system is somewhat uninspired, unlike the graphics, which are awesome.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ icon
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