Thursday, August 27, 2015

Weekly Release Roundup

Seven games this week survived initial scroll through. Five made it as far as app store link. One was deleted after 20 minutes or so of play. Rarely, pocket gamer AND itunes feature page both pretty much mirror toucharcade so no hidden gems (unless they show up Thursday or Friday night).

Starting today I'll be providing links to the game post for each game over on toucharcade, good people and an active forum community -thumbs up- I've also disabled (pretty sure...) comments on the blog. Only ones ever using it were hack/cheater/crack linkers anyways heh. Go to toucharcade for the community :)

The following four are still on my ipad and to some extent or another I managed to enjoy every single one of them.

Lara Croft GO
4.99usd, 416mb download, gamecenter enabled, universal.

Puzzle adventure game in the Tomb Raider universe. Ever played Hitman GO? This plays just like that, just better! Your movements are limited to the line and dots you see in the above screenshots and thus is created the puzzle nature of the game. Flipping switches, moving blocks, looting things, dealing with hostiles, its all here and the visuals are quite impressive! Each hostile has a different mechanic for dealing with them. Examples. Snakes can be shot or speared. Lizards give chase. Spiders patrol. In all cases stepping on the block in front of the hostile equals death and a quick load to the beginning of the current stage. So for dealing with them... examples. Snake, approach from sides of behind and tap on them to shoot, or stand parallel to them and toss a spear. Lizards, lead them over a weakened block or use a switch to alter the environment making chase impossible, or shoot them from sides/back. Spiders, well just wait till they patrol past, they always patrol in a straight line. Hidden collectibles are littered all over the stages and from the play select screen you can see which stages you are missing collectibles on.

Default Lara is back to her original game appearance but several costumes are unlocked from collectibles in game and others unlocked via iap purchases. The iap pack gives Hitman, Deus Ex and Just Cause themed Lara's and its strictly cosmetic, 1.99usd. There's also a iap purchase that basically lays out and solves every puzzle for you if your so inclined, 4.99usd.

Highly enjoyable, highly recommended.

Whispering Willows
4.99usd, 623mb download, gamecenter enabled, universal.

Oh my god grab your mifi controller now. This games control scheme almost feels like it was designed to fight you as a end game boss or something. The analog stick is fixed position, does not appear where you thumb press. The entire controller visually vanishes if you don't do anything for afew seconds... or if you stand still with your thumb pressed on the analog which eliminates my solution for the first problem. See the analog stick is quite generous with its movement / non movement so its really easy to just keep your thumb on the screen in a area of the stick with no movement. Problem is the damn thing vanishes if you don't move for afew seconds and moving your thumb doesn't bring it back. You have to lift your finger off the screen and then touch it again. Which of course means you have to position your thumb back properly on the stick.

With a controller, this game is much much more engaging. Spooky too. For some reason this girl ran to a mansion and then ran away from the mansion and fell down in a hole and is now trapped in the mansion. Add to the spookiness, ghosts and the fact that this girl can separate her soul from her body to sneak in hard to reach places and flip switches and whatnot. Fantastic art, engaging narrative, notes and things to collect and readable journal style.

With a controller in hand, I recommend this one. Without the controller... buyer beware.

Calvino Noir
3.99usd, 717mb download, no gamecenter, universal.

Stealth game with fantastic environments and visuals! Your playing with three characters each with their own skill sets. Heavy stealth, most of the time detection equals failure. Heavy exploration, things to loot, cash to find, etc, etc. Game play wise, where you tap is where you go. Doors, loot, hiding spots and the like appear as icons when you near them. Coin collected is spent on the three protagonists improving their speed and stealth. Initial purchase includes Chapter One, additional chapters are available via in game purchase, I haven't hit the end of the first chapter yet so can't comment on the additional chapters pricing.

My only grip thus far is you can only control one character at a time making non combat/stealth areas really tedious moving three characters one at a time across stages. I suppose it can be offset by giving purpose to each character. Send Arno ahead first, he doesn't seem to trigger the guards. He patrols, makes sure area is clear, Wilt follows up with flash light checking for hidden objects, Siska could come in last picking any locks Wilt found. Still, would like a move all button or control.

Good game, recommended.

Free, 233mb download, gamecenter enabled, universal.

Racing game! mifi controller recommended.

The story : Earth lost a war with aliens and they are actively hunting survivors. Whats humanity to do? Jump in a ship and race across various ruins. Does this help the cause? Not really. Mostly it just... dunno annoys the aliens maybe? -shrugs-

Each time you race your racing against the aliens targeting systems. If they catch up to you (and they will), you die. How do you outrun the system? Fly close to objects but don't hit them. Flying close builds up a boost that you can freely use to increase the distance between you and the aliens. Three currencies here. Yellow seems to be for purchasing 'perks' at the start of a race. Purple I've been spending on upgrades to the perks.  Blue stuff so far is used for unlocking additional perk slots letting you take more perks in with you on each run. Blue and purple is earned from daily missions, yellow is earned on stage. Mifi controller recommended as it allows for more precise flight. Alot of surfaces are at odd angles making staying close for boost without actually hitting quite difficult without the controller. Leveling up unlocks more random on stage buffs (upgraded with yellow).

I really like seeing your last run and best run on track as ghost racers, allows for perfecting your runs each day. The track resets daily BTW.

You can also acquire purple via iap store, watching videos and clicking links in the iap store. I bought a early discount iap pack at 2 bucks or some such to support the Dev's, haven't seen any advertisement pop ups since doing so.

There's a paint brush icon, suspect its for customizing the ship, not available yet.

Fun game, free, recommended. Suggestion to the Dev's, option to adjust controller sensitivity.