iPhone Game Friday: New Releases

Greetings, game fans! Another Friday, another roundup. This installment’s collection is quite varied; We’ve got everything from zombies to puzzles to 8-bit gaming lined up for you, so click through and pick your next addiction.

Call of Mini: Zombies

Call of Mini: Zombies

Call of Mini: Zombies

You’ve been craving more zombies, am I right? I hope so. If you’re anything like me then you’re beginning to feel that this whole zombie market is getting over-saturated. But the condition is not incurable, and Triniti Interactive delivers a very amusing and fun spin on things by placing you in a fully 3-D world and setting you loose to kill hilariously square-headed zombies.

You are also of the rectangular skull persuasion, and begin your quest with the name “Joe Blo.” The structure of the game is pretty much what you’ve come to expect: survive waves of zombies and use whatever weaponry you can find to mangle your way through the horde. There are 13 such weapons that you can use to defend against 12 different types of zombies for a nice sense of variety. This is reinforced by the fact that the weapons are actually different enough to be worth switching between, even in a frantic situation.

The graphics are amusing in style and look nice on an iPhone, though some of the textures could use a bit more detail, especially on a Retina display. The aspects that count most though — gameplay smoothness and fun factor — score high marks. It’s worth mentioning that the app runs on the iPhone and iPad, so 99 cents goes quite a ways. Worth a play, even if you’re sick of zombies!

Price: $0.99
Developer: Triniti Interactive Limited
Download: App Store

 

Meganoid

Meganoid

Meganoid

Also entering a saturated market is Meganoid, an 8-bit inspired platformer that claims to be reliving the glory of ’80s and ’90s games. The style is captured with uncanny accuracy and authenticity here, and that same spirit translates to all aspects of the game, for better or worse.

For instance, the gameplay is definitely the focus and is very finely tuned; however, unlike the modern standard for difficulty level, Meganoid opts for a more challenging paradigm where you’ll need actual skill and practice to overcome the levels. For now, there are 70 levels, with more promised for future updates. They tend to be fairly short by platformer standards, but they’re difficult, so you won’t feel cheated.

If you’re into fast-paced retro platformers, then Meganoid is an extraordinary little gem that deserves your attention.

Price: $0.99
Developer: OrangePixel
Download: App Store

 

dream:scape

dream:scape

dream:scape

If you like your gaming darker and more immersive, then the Unreal-powered dream:scape will be more up your alley. The fully 3-D environments, beautifully rendered, and accompanied by more than ten minutes of recorded voice acting come together to tell a story that will keep you interested until the end.

The story focuses on a man called Wilson who is stuck in a state of limbo between life and death, as he struggles to piece together his past. It’s not a fresh tale, but it’s told well enough to be engaging, and the world is just so cool to explore on your phone that the experience makes up for any shortcomings in the plot. The controls are occasionally frustrating, but it’s more a matter of getting used to them rather than a design flaw.

It’s not a game that you’ll breeze through lightly, but that’s what makes it all the more distinctive. If you like hidden object games or old point-and-click adventures in the style of Myst, then you’ll feel right at home in dream:scape.

Price: $1.99
Developer: Speedbump
Download: App Store

 

Ball Towers

Ball Towers

Ball Towers

One of the most impressive uses of a 3-D environment in an iPhone game that I’ve ever seen comes to us in the form of the seemingly innocuous Ball Towers. This puzzle game is an accelerometer controlled affair where you guide a ball through increasingly tangled levels without letting it fall off the track.

As is usually the case with successful games, Ball Towers is a simple concept executed to near perfection. The visual polish is amazing and the fact that the menu and game world is entirely integrated in a seamless 3-D virtual environment is both very cool and effortlessly realized. The complexity of what must be going on behind the scenes is never apparent; The game runs smoothly on even the biggest of levels. There are several level packs and a few different types of balls with differing characteristics that you’ll unlock as you play through the game.

There are also some helpful temporary modes including slow motion, rewind and one that shrinks the ball to a size that makes it easier to control. Despite not being a particularly fast-paced puzzler, Ball Towers is extremely fun and absolutely gorgeous to look at and listen to.

Price: $0.99
Developer: ASK Homework
Download: App Store

 

Movie Story

Movie Story

Movie Story

Closing off this week’s list is a promising copycat: Movie Story. You can probably guess that the game follows very closely alongside the gameplay system designed for GameDevStory, and for the most part, it’s a flattering reconstruction.

The gameplay is, of course, much the same, except that you’re running a film studio rather than a game one. The graphics are also notably shinier and more modern, which fans of the retro look may not find to be a positive move. The game unfortunately suffers from a number of missteps in this initial version, including an awful English translation and a bewilderingly slow speed for text and movement that doesn’t seem to have any justification and saps much of the vibrancy from the gameplay.

That being said, both are clearly quick fixes that we can expect in the next update, and setting aside those issues leaves us with a gorgeous GameDevStory clone that lets you relive some of the wild excitement of its inspiration in a new setting. It’s also free, so there’s no reason not to give it a try.

Price: Free
Developer: EverDude
Download: App Store

 

What Have You Been Playing?

There are many games that come out each week that we can’t feature, but if you’ve been sucked in by any then definitely drop them into the comments because we’d love to hear about them! Until July, farewell!