Time for your weekly dose of App Store gaming goodness!
Join us and twist, race, jump, and even stumble your way to gaming nirvana with our favourite titles from this week.
What if you had to navigate through a variety of action platformer levels without touching the sides? What if you had to do that while spinning constantly? And what if you’re in the shape of a propeller? I’m talking about Twist Pilot.
Besides the challenge of navigating, you’ll also be tasked with collecting rings, unlocking blocked paths and struggling to do it all within the shortest possible amount of time. Oh, and there are spiders. Many many fiendish spiders whose webs and traps will give you more to worry about as you make your way through the 75 stages.
Controls are appropriately easy to pick up, and they’re precise enough to stay out of your way. Full Game Centre integration and support for the skinny new iPhone 5 Retina display come together to form an enjoyable casual title.
Somewhere between the PS3’s Dyad and Wipeout series, Skyriders brings the futuristic racing experience to your iPhone.
David Reed, who created the quirky Little Acorns, changes tack for this title. What started as a “small project” ballooned into a tremendously polished racing title worthy of consoles. The racing is fast-paced and exciting, with spectacular levels and silky smooth 60fps gameplay. As you pass over boost panels, you also have to grab stars — and they come in two colours. Your ship is able to flip from colour to colour, and you must match your ship colour to the star to collect it.
Upgrading your ship will allow you to earn higher scores for the Game Centre leaderboard, and the complete lack of any IAP ensures that all progress is legitimately earned through skillful play — as it should be. Kudos to David and his collaborators for producing a spectacular and absorbing mobile racer.
Two years before Doodle Jump graced the App Store and started the vertical climber craze, the original Sonic Jump emerged for the feature phones of the day.
Remade, bright and beautiful, for your iPhones, Sonic Jump returns triumphantly and effortlessly establishes itself as a benchmark for the genre. Tremendous gameplay variety is spread through the game’s two modes (arcade and story), and the inclusion of excellent boss battles and tons of unlockables makes it especially difficult to put down. The environments are both beautiful and familiar for fans of the series, as are the characters and ubiquitous rings you must collect.
An otherwise perfect presentation is marred by the inclusion of a heavy handed IAP presence, with prices reaching into the $30 range for ring bundles. Provided you ignore those though, you’re still left with a hugely engrossing gameplay experience that takes the jumping genre back to its roots — and improves upon it in almost every way.
This one’s for you, cat lovers. It’s one of those games that is ingeniously simple in its premise, but provides a lot of entertainment.
You play as a cat (or a variety of other creatures) stuck in a house with your owners away. What is a lonely pet to do if not cause wanton destruction? The goal of the game is quite simply to cause as much damage as you possible can to the home before your owners return.
It’s amusing, it’s straightforward and it’s free (unless you pay to unlock all the animals), which makes it easy to recommend for those brief moments of boredom where you want to experience life from the eyes of your favourite pet. Maybe it will make it easier to forgive the gashes in your couch, or the torn carpet, or the vases …
Square Planet is a cubist Sonic adventure with shades of Zelda and a vast amount of charm.
As the saviour of the ball people, you must roll around the edgy levels and rescue your companions. Collect rings while you’re at it, and use power-ups to assist you as you explore. The controls are an interesting blend of tilt and tap, with the former controlling direction and the latter making you jump. It works very smoothly, and a gravity inversion system adds some extra dimension where appropriate.
The most appealing part of the game, for me at least, is the attention to detail in the level design. The square world is filled with baddies, but there are many amusing things to notice if you keep a sharp eye out while traveling. Free and fantastic, Square Planet is an easy recommendation.
What Have You Been Playing?
That’s a wrap for this Friday, everyone. Have yourselves a fine weekend and come back next week for some very exciting new titles!