App Reviews
Deep Under the Sky iOS review

I have to admit, I’m quite terrible for judging books by their covers, or perhaps I should say: apps by their App Store descriptions. Something about Deep Under the Sky’s promise of “80 levels in four gorgeous worlds” had me thinking: ‘Here we go again.’

Note to self: stop with the judging. Despite my reservations, Deep Under the Sky has sexily slinked its way onto my Best Mobile Games of 2014 shortlist. It’s that good.

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Slender Rising iOS review

To be perfectly honest, the whole Slender Man phenomenon had kinda passed me by; I hadn’t realised – until quite recently – just how popular the big weirdo is with those crazy internet-using kids (more below).

There’s no shortage of Slender Man apps on the App Store, but reportedly one of the best – and most terrifying – is Slender Rising by Michael Hegemann (£1.99). It’s scary sh*t, man.

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Light in the Dark iOS review

I’m still literally (not literally) drowning in review codes, but when the PR hounds come a-barking, I deliver delicious meaty review-based goodness. A bit like Pedigree Chum for PR people (I have no idea what I’m talking about).

Next up under the review microscope is Dreamgate Studios’ Light in the Dark (£1.49 @ App Store, £1.49 @ Google Play), a puzzle game that tasks you with the blocking and the bending and the bouncing of light beams. More below.

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Happy Cube Death Arena iOS review

And so to Happy Cube Death Arena by Tiny Titan Studios (free @ App Store, free @ Google Play). Love the name. Love the titular cube’s happy wee face juxtaposed with the murky environment. Love the idea of super-hard quick-fix gaming.

But does Happy Cube Death Arena deliver, or is it a case of giving a book slightly too much credit based solely on its cover? Answer on a virtual postcard below.

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Fotonica iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Sep. 22 at 17:00

Fotonica iOS review

A report from my Higher Physics teacher once declared: “Lewis persistently appears disinterested and is easily distracted, but consistently completes work to an incredibly high standard.” Story of my life.

Physics, protons, photons, Fotonica on the App Store. See what I did there? And that’s the first two paragraphs wrapped up in a neat little package.

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Duke Dashington iOS review

Short and sweet is a phrase that’s, well, never been used to describe yours truly. I’m more of a tall and tart kinda guy.

Jussi Simpanen’s Duke Dashington (Gentleman and scholar) definitely falls into the former category, however. It’s a bite-size gem currently going for £1.49 at the App Store, and while it doesn’t last long, it’s absolutely deserving of your attention.

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Dodo Master iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Sep. 15 at 17:00

Dodo Master iOS review

Ever seen a dodo with a teapot on its head jump on top of a giant spider, causing it to explode in a burst of orange light? Me neither. Until last night, that is.

Dodo Master comes from the mind of Semir Saleh (and Semir only, he jokes modestly in his email), and it might just be one of the best platformers the App Store has seen to date.

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ALONE iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Sep. 12 at 19:30

ALONE iOS review

Ironically, the last game I reviewed was The Nightmare Cooperative, and in the rambling introduction I spoke of the positives of enduring negative experiences with others, whether you’re crawling through a dungeon or chasing a killer shark.

Here we're reluctantly embracing solitude and firing up the CAPS LOCK as we fly through space… ALONE.

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The Nightmare Cooperative iOS review

If there’s one thing that makes a nightmarish situation more tolerable, it’s sharing the misery with others. Example: Chief Brody ended up having a great old time with Hooper and Quint in Jaws, to the extent that they almost forgot about the killer shark. Y’know, until it came back and ate Quint. Lovely.

Lucky Frame’s The Nightmare Cooperative subscribes to that notion, too, tasking you with controlling a band of adventurers as they face certain dungeon-based death.

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Epic Eric iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Sep. 8 at 17:00

Epic Eric iOS review

I’ve heard feminists complain (yes, complain; shock horror!) that there aren’t enough female protagonists in video games, though a boob-rocking friend points out that men are – as determined by Father Nature himself – physically stronger; there’s no misogynist conspiracy, merely a natural order to things.

With Epic Eric, 232 Studios looks to appease the bra burners with the option to play as a femme bot, Epic Erica, a lady who’s every bit as capable as her penis-based counterpart.

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Foodie Yama iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Sep. 1 at 17:00

Foodie Yama iOS review

Random lesson of the day: Yama, in Japanese, means mountain, so when people say “Mount Fujiyama”, they’re actually saying “Mount Fuji mountain”. Either “Mount Fuji” or “Fujiyama” gets the job done.

And so to Foodie Yama, an App Store title that challenges you to eat a mountain of food. Er, that’s the on-screen “you”, as opposed to you, you big meat sack.

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WWE SuperCard iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Aug. 29 at 17:00

WWE SuperCard iOS review

I touched on wrestling many moons ago in He Is Pile Driver, and here we return to the World’s Greatest Art Form (drama! Comedy! Music! Athleticism!) in WWE Super Card (free @ App Store, free @ Google Play).

2K revealed this week that the app was downloaded a whopping 1.5 million times in its first week, so I looked out my tightest spandex, oiled myself up and challenged WWE SuperCard to a no holds barred grappling session.

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The Walking Dead Pinball iOS review

Hey guy. If you’re looking for an opinion on The Walking Dead Pinball, you’ve come to the right place. See, at the time of writing, I’m number two in the world. THE WORLD *flexes finger muscles*.

Following hot on the heels of Doctor Strange and Deadpool’s outings, Zen Pinball brings Telltale’s The Walking Dead to the table (pun intended). The Walking Dead? Good. Pinball? Good. Put them together?

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Dream Revenant iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Aug. 23 at 17:00

Dream Revenant iOS review

The solitary quote on the Dream Revenant App Store listing comes from Kotaku, with the reviewer revealing that he played the game “on a whim” and 90 minutes later found himself crying. Oh, you big wuss.

It mightn’t reduce you to tears, but Dream Revenant is an undeniably emotive experience – surprising for a game that initially appears to be a simple, eye-friendly tech demo.

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Super Crossfighter iOS review

Fans of retro shooters might recall something called Super Crossfire, released on the App Store in 2011. Radiangames (Luke Schneider) has recaptured the rights to it, and given the game a sexy makeover.

The result is Super Crossfighter (£1.49 @ App Store, £1.18 @ Google Play, £1.49 @ Windows Phone Marketplace), one of my favourite games of the year so far.

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Cognition Episode 2 iPad review

I started playing Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller, Episode 2: The Wise Monkey (Cognition Episode 2, for short; deal?) a few months ago, but abandoned ship when I got kinda stuck and realised I likely wouldn’t finish it in time for my review deadline. Er, that was back in September 2013.

Fast-forward 11 months and I randomly decided to go back to it, freeing up 1.1GB of vital space on my iPad and enjoying myself immensely in the process.

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Xibalba iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Aug. 15 at 17:00

Xibalba iOS review

Woah, I got caught up reading about Xibalba there. In addition to being the name of a Southern Lord hardcore band (good lord, that’s heavy), Xibalba is – primarily – the name of the underworld in Mayan mythology, loosely translated as “place of fear”.

It’s also a rather fantastic retro FPS (first-person shooter) on the App Store, available for… wait for it… free. No adverts, no in-app purchases, just free. Go get it.

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Mighty Adventure iOS review

I’ve noted before that it’s worth sticking with a game, even when it doesn’t immediately click. Calculords is a fine example of something I found almost unfairly difficult at first, only to declare it “one of the most unique and oddly compelling strategy titles I’ve played in a long time”.

Sadly, the opposite phenomenon is also a possibility; something that initially seems pretty cool can quickly turn poop, and that’s exactly what happened with Pixel Trap’s Mighty Adventure.

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Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon iOS review

Know what I really enjoyed? The Guardians of the Galaxy movie. I reckon they did a stellar job of introducing what was to many a brand new strand of the Marvel universe, while deftly servicing Guardians aficionados with geek-friendly references.

Here we’re looking at the obligatory Guardians of the Galaxy app, The Universal Weapon (£1.99 @ App Store, £1.78 @ Google Play, £1.99 @ Windows Phone Marketplace), though to be fair, it’s actually very much its own thing – rather than a cheap, half-hearted cash-in.

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Crazy Taxi City Rush iOS review

I generally love Sega stuff, and have incredibly fond memories of the Crazy Taxi games on the Dreamcast (and to a slightly lesser extent on mobile). On the other hand, I generally loathe freemium nonsense, so when the two came head to head in Crazy Taxi City Rush (App Store, Google Play), I was tempted to sidestep it entirely, fearing something akin to the utterly forgettable Sonic Jump Fever.

For some reason (maybe it was the surprising abundance of positive reviews), I decided to bite the proverbial bullet this week, and I’m glad I did. S’pretty good, man.

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