Beat-’em-up games have sort of a base appeal. While playing them, you essentially keep hitting things until there are no more things to hit. Along the way, you might integrate strategy to achieve this task faster or find ways to hit harder, but the formulas found in these games — especially when it comes to enemy attacks — keep them mindlessly simple, unrivaled fun that probably encourages violent behavior in the real world.

Ah, well.

Several games surround their brawls with heroic stories of saving the day and rescuing enslaved denizens of fictional cities. Not Beatdown. The premise in this punch-packing bout is all about revenge. If you’re ready to take out some aggression, Beatdown might just be the game for you. Find out why after the jump.


Are you looking to perfect your home coffee brewing technique? Intelligentsia, a coffee bar with locations in Chicago, Los Angeles and New York, seeks to elevate your coffee experience from bean to cup. These guys don’t just sell coffee, they develop blends working directly with growers and they perform the roasting. With the Intelligentsia Coffee app, you can geek out on coffee by checking out the beautifully illustrated brewing techniques, keeping up with the latest seasonal coffees offered and utilizing the brew timer for ultimate brewing precision.

This smart, sleek app also connects you with Intelligentsia via their twitter feed and maps of all locations (with hours). Share your favorite coffee blends from the app on Facebook and find impressions from other coffee lovers (or leave your own) in the coffee comments.

If you know what a Chemex is or carefully calibrate your coffee grinder for the perfect cup of French Press every morning, the Intelligentsia Coffee app was made for you. Did I mention it’s free? (more…)

It’s hard to say exactly what it is about Pudding Monsters that makes it so addictive and so easy on the eyes, since it scores high marks all around. You could chalk it up to slick 3-D graphics, the cute characters, the smooth animation, the pleasantly quirky sound effects, and of course, the simple-yet-not-so-simple puzzles.

But really it’s the balance of all of the above that makes the game such a winner. Like my favorite Pixar films that I can watch over and over, Pudding Monsters is a game that makes me smile every time I play. (more…)

One of the primary functions of my iPhone (besides work related stuff, as it’s technically a work phone), are the general smartphone functions — check social media, take photos, check email. While the iPhone obviously has really fantastic apps, email apps has always been something that I feel leave more to be desired. The default mail app is a bit bland and at times unintuitive. Sparrow, which is beautiful, always seemed a bit slow to me, plus it really bothers me that the app doesn’t automatically get new messages.

But Gmail … well I’ve been a Gmail faithful since April 2004. When I saw they redesigned their iOS app, I was downright giddy. Let’s see how it stacks up. (more…)

Long a favorite on Facebook, Candy Crush Saga has made the jump to iOS. With awesome pieces of candy instead of stupid old jewels, Candy Crush Saga follows the same gameplay as Bejeweled: switch two candies to make a three-in-a-row match. Create special matches and you’ll get power boosts. Clear enough candy in time, and you win the round. But does it take more than sweet, sweet candy to make a game really stand out? Not in my experience, but let’s find out. (more…)

Like many people, I use my iPhone as my alarm clock. The other day, the alarm went off quite sharply, and I grabbed my phone to turn it off. Problem was, the charging cable caught on my nightstand, and my iPhone 5 took a tumble onto the tile floor, marring the corner nicely. Oy.

Understandably, I was pretty upset. After all, I’ve used cases on all of my iPhones up until the iPhone 5, and I don’t know why I changed my mind. Was I lazy? Did I just keep putting it off? Did I want to show off the iPhone 5 goodness? Whatever it was, I now have a scratched and marred iPhone to show for it.

What about you? Do you buy and use a case for your iPhone or do you just let it sit about naked as a jaybird? Let us know in the poll to the right!

Apple’s mapping system didn’t exactly work out as the company had hoped. After years of rumors and high hopes for the alternative to Google’s solution, Maps in iOS 6 was far from a success. It had so many bugs that all users could do was complain about the app rather than use it. In the end, they transitioned to alternatives like Waze and Maps+, or even Google’s own Web app, which was recently improved for iOS users. None of these really solved the problems for those who enjoyed the old ways. Now there is a fix.

Google worked hard on its own Maps app for iOS, bringing all the old features in a new and modern user interface. It’s won over a lot of users so far and since Google is more reliable when it comes to this sort of thing, there’s no reason not to use the free app. Or is there? (more…)

Our weekly sponsor this week is MovieShare, the easiest way to share movies between your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Mac.

Ever shoot a movie on your iPhone and then want to send it to your iPad? Maybe your Mac? You’d think that there was some way to do it with Photo Stream or iCloud, but there isn’t. The only way you can move your movies from one device to another is to either send it via email, iMessage or just put it up to YouTube, and none of those options are really that awesome. What if there was an easier way?

You know there is,that’s why we’re here to talk about MovieShare, right? So here’s the skinny. Take any video on your iPhone, then put it into MovieShare, which is as easy as tapping the screen a few times. Download and install MovieShare on your Mac or iPad, and you can then send your flicks to whatever machine you like, the only requirement is that you need to have all of the devices on the same Wi-Fi network. Move from your Mac to iPhone, then to the iPad, then to and iPod touch — it doesn’t matter what iOS device it is, the process is just a few taps away.

I personally tried this out on my iPad, Mac and iPhone, using a few home movies that I had taken of my son. Of course, sending them back and forth between each machine was really quick and easy to do. The entire process took just a few minutes, and now my movies are on my Mac where I want them, no muss, no fuss.

Go Get It!

Want to make transferring movies between your devices super easy? Go get MovieShare right now — it’s free, so you’ve got no excuse not to. Unless you want to make moving your movies a difficult process, and who wants that, right?

Think you’ve got a great app? Sign up for a Weekly Sponsorship slot just like this one.

As winter approaches, I’ve begun the time-honored tradition of spending large chunks of my time sitting inside, sipping on a warm coffee- or tea-based beverage, and getting addicted to as many games as possible. These days, we tend to put most games into two main categories. First, you have your longer, in-depth games that you can really sink your time into. Second, you have a subset of games that the iTunes App Store lovingly refers to as “5 Minute Fixes,” or games that you can pick up for a few minutes at a time, perhaps in line at the store or while riding a bus.

What is often overlooked in the area of game reviews (particularly for platforms like iOS) is that quick-fix games and time-sucking games are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Today I’m going to look at Esoteric Development‘s puzzler Box 2 Box — a deceptively simplistic game whose level-based design makes it good for short, segmented bursts of play, but where the increasing level difficulty can make for maddening, time-sucking fun. (more…)

As you have probably heard or experienced, having kids definitely changes your life and how you live it. Before, I had all the time in the world to go to the movies, read the books I wanted, etc. Now, those activities are few and far between, and I definitely can no longer keep up with all the new releases that come out.

Well, a few weeks ago, I got to download an app called Recall, which I was intrigued by because I thought it might help me solve this problem. With so many good things being released in a rapid pace, I don’t know how we can even keep up with everything. But, Recall aims to help us remember when that latest movie we wanted to watch comes out, or that awesome song that we want to download. (more…)

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