NGMoco, the acclaimed iPhone developer behind the awesome We Rule and Eliminate Pro have announced a couple of upcoming games, which both seem to be different takes on the kingdom-building formula of We Rule. Here are a couple of screenshots, it’ll be interesting to see how these games differ from We Rule, since the games look like they must be based on the same engine.
The iPhone game developer Freeverse first flew onto my radar with the stellar space trading game Warpgate, released earlier this year. The most recent release from Freeverse is a hack and slash game based on the popular Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, the strange, modern literary conversion of Jane Austen’s classic work. So has Freeverse delivered another top-notch Iphone game? Or should Pride And Predjudice And Zombies be relegated to the AppStore basement with the millions of mediocre side-scrolling hack n slash games?
Anyone who has used the Facebook app for iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad knows the frustrations of not being able to watch videos. Not only are videos unavailable, but there are numerous other quirks and annoying bugs that inhibit the functionality of the popular social networking app. Well, the 3.1.3 update for the Facebook App has come out, and fortunately it has fixed the video bug, and added some other tweaks to improve users’ experience with the app.
Facebook for iPhone, iPod Touch, and the iPad is available for free from the iTunes AppStore.
Fanboys of the movie Tron have probably played all of the lightcycle/disc throwing games that have been inspired by the film since Tron’s release in 1982. Many of those games did not live up to the premise’s potential and I was never able to find a good one (although I haven’t tried them all). Fortunately, Pankaku inc. has released Lightbike 2 for the iPhone, a nearly perfect recreation of the Tron “LightCycle” game – and here’s the two biggest selling points: it has online muliplayer, and it’s free.
After hyping up the iPhone port of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within, Gameloft encountered a bug with the game’s menu system when it was first released on June 3rd, and had to pull the game from the AppStore. They promised that the game would be back up “As soon as possible,” and two weeks later, it’s finally here. Fans of the Prince of Persia console series will be thrilled to learn that this iPhone version seems to be a full port of the original PS2 game. This version has 12 chapters (as compared to the original’s 25), so it will be interesting to see if the whole story is included, or if half of the levels are missing. In the time I had to play the bugged-menu version, I was very impressed with how true the game stayed to the original. We’ll be posting our review of Prince of Persia: Warrior Within in a few days, but until then, you can pick it up from the AppStore for $9.99 here.
At E3, everyone’s favorite JRP developer Square Enix has announced two upcoming iPhone titles: Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of Lions, and the one I’m really excited for: Secret of Mana. It should be noted that these are both ports of existing games: Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of Lions was a 1997 PlayStation One release, and Secret of Mana was released in 1993 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The Secret of Mana trailer posted above is particularly scarce, and neither trailer has any gameplay footage. I guess this means we won’t be getting another Chaos Rings anytime soon, but at least Square Enix is working on more iPhone games. I’m really just waiting for Chrono Trigger, which is in my top 3 games of all time. I think we should start bombarding Square Enix with emails and letters, begging them to release Chrono Trigger, as it would easily be in the top 3 iPhone games, even if it was just a direct port of the SNES version. If you need help writing your letter, feel free to use this article as a template: A Letter to Square Enix: Please Bring Chrono Trigger to the AppStore!
For those of us iPhone owners that love to cook, the device has become a convenient way to find recipes and make grocery lists. I used to use the “Everyday Food” app from Martha Stewart Living, however I recently discovered Epicurious, and since then it has turned into my one place to get recipes and make my shopping list. Although both the Martha Stewart app and Epicurious both offer many of the same features and functionality, Epicurious is free (and still better), whereas Martha’s Everyday Food is 99 cents.
I love going through my Mom’s dusty old cookbooks (the Betty Crocker one is the best!), but if I ever do find a recipe I want to make, I have to write down all the ingredients on my grocery list. Fortunately, Epicurious is now saving me that trouble (and some trees). With one click you can add any recipe’s ingredients (and how much of that ingredient to buy) to a grocery list. You can select all of the meals you want for the next week, and the app will assemble an amalgamated grocery list with everything on it. This feature is so convenient, I now walk around the grocery store with iPhone in-hand, checking items off the list as I go. I still get funny looks from a few shoppers, but every once in a while I see a like-minded soul being led around the store by their iPhone, and smile.
Part of the reason why I think my iPhone/iPod Touch are amazing to game on is that developers sometimes take classic game ideas and add in all the RPG elements and character progression we’ve come to expect from top-tier PC/console games. One of the better examples of this is WARBLADE, a Space Invaders-type app from EMV Software. Warblade tales a classic formula and mixes in a ton of progression with plenty of upgrades and unlockables.
I’ve used Beatmaker and I Am T-Pain before, but not like this! I was sent this link and proceeded to watch the video with my jaw resting on the floor. Apparently, you can create covers of famous songs – that is if you have 4 iPhones, a lot of cables, and the right apps… Either way, AppleGirl002 is my new hero (granted, her voice is a bit rough around the edges, but you have to admire her tenacity). Although I can’t vouch for her original music, she’s done an excellent job of recreating the songs she is singing, and her setup is so mind-boggling and complex that you can’t help but admire her effort (and wonder how she figured out how to do it all). Also, apparently she used these videos as a platform to land a record deal. Now I just need to go purchase 3 more iPhones…
If you’re a follower of Donut Games like I am, you were probably excited to see that Cat Physics was released to the Appstore. From Rat on the Run to Comet Racer, the iPhone games that Donut Games release can always be counted on for some quick fun. It seems that one of the main focuses of Donut Games’ development is that the games have to be suited to being played in a mobile environment. If you only have 2 minutes to play a game while you’re on the bus, you’ll be safe in assuming that it will be enough time to finish one of the levels in a Donut game.
Cat Physics’ premise is incredibly simple: you need to get a ball of yarn from one cat to another by using environmental tools and avoiding hazards. The premise is explained in the Appstore description, which describes how all cats are up at dawn playing Cat Physics before all of us humans wake up. You may have to suspend your disbelief, but I’m betting you won’t be playing Cat Physics for the story anyway.
DigiDNA’s program DiskAid (Windows, Mac OS, Linux), has been the tool I’ve used whenever I need access my iPod Touch/iPhone as a folder. Sometimes, you need to perform tasks that iTunes doesn’t handle well (or at all), and DiskAid was the easy solution for me. It’s also a great tool for people with jailbroken devices that need to transfer things like video game ROMs and other files, to use with third-party applications.