Strike Wing: Raptor Rising is the odd case of a pretty good game which just doesn't quite have all it needs to sink its hooks into you. It does have quite a bit going for it, as you are greeted with a choice of control style, ranging between touchscreen joystick and gyroscopic tilt steering; and what's more surprising than it should be in this business, the touchscreen controls are actually quite good. Accompanying the slick controls, which also include buttons for firing, boosting, and slowing down, are some very nice graphics and suitable (if not particularly catchy) music and sound effects for your space dogfight.
And a dogfight is just what it is, as you engage the enemy in a full 360-degree field of battle, shooting at the enemy fighters with the help of your wingmen. There is also the boast of adaptable enemy AI, changing as you play, but it can be a bit difficult to notice, at least earlier on. Fortunately, locking on to enemies is pretty simple, as you don't need a precise lock on your targets to score hits: just getting them inside the wider targeting reticule is often enough to engage a small degree of auto-targeting from your guns, alleviating what could have been a rather frustrating experience.
The game is broken up into missions, and this is where things begin to falter. Each mission contains a different scenario or end objective, but there isn't really anything to tie them together. It's essentially a high-score game, and while that's not bad--we're certainly not ones to say games must have a story--something about it just feels kind of lacking without one.
Developers tend to deluge the App Store with new releases every Thursday, and, diligently, we here at Gamezebo try to cover them all. But what if you don't want to wait for a review? What if you want to see how these games play right now? This Thursday, Gamezebo has you covered.
Join us on our Twitch channel at 11am PT/2pm ET as we play around for a few hours with five of the biggest iOS games to release this week. We'll be happy to answer any questions you might have in the live chat, and if you miss the broadcast, we'll be sure to archive it so you can have a peek at the latest releases at your convenience.
UPDATE: Thanks everyone! That was plenty of fun. The archived video of the second half of the show is above (we had techincal difficulties, so this is what happened upon our return). Tune in again next week!
NinJump Rooftops brings us back to a time when the App Store was just starting out, and simple timewaster games like Doodle Jump and Can Knockdown ruled the mobile scene. In fact, Backflip Studios' own NinJump used to be the talk of the town around these parts in 2010. However, it's not 2010 anymore, and with so much gameplay innovation and graphical prowess shaping the world of mobile gaming as we know it today, can these basic little timewaster games still hold a place in our age of high-end graphics and deeply immersive gameplay?
Much like everything else in NinJump Rooftops, the concept is simple: you are a ninja, and you have to run along the endless rooftops, while avoiding hazards and taking out enemies with your ninja jump attacks. The controls are equally simple, with one tap anywhere on the screen corresponding to making your ninja jump, a second tap entering into a double jump, and holding down on the screen increasing the height of your jump. The gameplay itself is of the sidescrolling endless runner variety, and Backflip Studios uses some pretty nice 3D visuals to bring the world to life (although your scenery will be strictly limited to the Asian-inspired rooftops, and there's never much of a variety no matter how far you manage to make it during any one of your runs).
So you'll be running and jumping as par for the course, and picking up tons of gold coins along the way which you can use to buy power-ups that give you an extra added edge. The power-ups are also standard endless runner fare, with magnet boosts that draw surrounding coins towards you, and a big blue rocket that lifts you up and saves you if you happen to fall. You'll also be met with your fairly typical in-game goals, such as "Collect X amount of coins over time" or "Run X amount of meters in a single run." Completing these objectives will net you more additional coins, which can then be used to buy more power-ups, and so on.
Sunshine Bay is a city-building social game created by Game Insight International. In this game, you'll manage a seaside vacation resort hotspot, arrange cruises for vacationers, and become a major stopping point for guest cruises. Gamezebo's quick start strategy guide will provide you with detailed images, tips, information, and hints on how to play your best game.
The month of October has come and gone, and most of us have probably become fully occupied with raking up all of the leaves that are covering the lawn, or putting the last finishing touches on our Halloween costumes. But before we get ready to jump headfirst into November and partake in all of the seasonal offerings that the end of Fall are sure to bring, it's time to take a look back on all of the amazing games that made this past October such a month to behold.
While our big winner this month was one of the slickest brawler experiences we've seen on a mobile device so far, you would be mistaken not to check out our many runners-up as well, since most of these incredible games went the route of innovation over intense polish and graphical sheen. Oh, who am I kidding? Every one of these games on our October list went above and beyond in terms of both the gameplay and the visual departments!
Do you agree with our top choices for the month of October? Did some of your favorite games just miss the cut? Be sure to let us know down in the replies (after you finish up with your Halloween costume, of course)!
Combat Monsters, the virtual card battle game with echoes of Magic: The Gathering is now in full release, and if you played and enjoyed it during the beta period, you'll be pleased to know that very little has changed over the past couple of months. And if you haven't, you probably should - it's a fun, challenging strategy card game, and while some of the multiplayer features are lacking, it gets the free-to-play formula right, a rare accomplishment these days.
Even if you have only a basic idea of what Magic: The Gathering is, there's no mistaking the similarities between that famous card game and Combat Monsters. In fact, Paul Johnson, the co-founder of Rubicon Development is an "avid player" of Magic, but wanted a video game with a more tactical experience. Thus, Combat Monsters, in which you not only collect virtual cards of various types and abilities and deploy them in single and multiplayer duels, but also maneuver on a 3D game board, complete with special hexes that can amplify your powers - or your enemy's.
Combat Monsters is very much an "easy to learn, tough to master" game. You begin by choosing a hero - a warrior, an archer, or a mage - who will serve as your personal avatar, and are then given a basic starting deck with which to play. The bulk of your deck will, initially at least, be composed of various fantasy monsters like orcs, minotaurs, elves, zombies and so forth, each of which belongs to one of the three character classes; there are also cards for weapons, armor, equipment, spells, and magical runes. Some "supplemental" cards only work with specific races or classes, and some monster cards have special abilities that manifest under the right conditions: zombies gain health whenever a monster on the board dies, for instance, while orcs gain an attack bonus for every friendly orc in play.
Halloween has always been one of my favorite times of the year. It's spookily close to my birthday, you get to dress up in all sorts of frightening costumes and scare the living daylights out of your neighbors, and then you get rewarded for all of your efforts with heaps and heaps of delicious candy. But now there's another reason why I've grown to love Halloween: the mass amount of scary new mobile games that hit the App Store just in time for trick-or-treating!
And this Halloween is certainly no different, as when the clock strikes midnight tonight to signal in the coming of October 31, we'll have a hauntingly realistic auditory adventure about being dead, a death-defying endless jumping game where your innocent Pygmy can meet his demise in a number of excruciating ways, and one of the creepiest physics-based puzzlers I think I've ever seen. So get ready to be in for the scares, because here are some of the new mobile games that are gearing up to start your Halloween off right!
Fright Heights is a puzzle game created by Chillingo. You clear a haunted tower of nosy humans by managing ghosts according to their numerical values. Gamezebo's quick start strategy guide will provide you with detailed images, tips, information, and hints on how to clear your domicile of those meddling kids.