App Reviews
Urban Trial Freestyle iOS review

Console arcade hit Trials recently made the leap to mobile in the form of Trials Frontier, but was largely watered down and coated in sickly freemium sugar. In a subsequent conversation with a mate, we conceded that a faithful conversion would probably be too ambitious for ye olde touchscreen.

But wait! What’s this? Urban Trial Freestyle (don’t say Trials plural, ahem), a game that’s more Trials than Trials.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Rooftop Run iOS review

Here’s a fine example of just how old I am: I can remember when the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were known as the Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles in the UK, because “ninja” had explicitly violent connotations. Or at least, that was the word on the street; we couldn’t exactly “google” it in those days. Indeed, a quick cyber-search confirms that to be the case.

Anyway! Where were we? Ah, yes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Rooftop Run on the App Store (where it’s currently free, usually £2.49) and Google Play (£2.42). Let’s do it.

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The Bearded Hero iOS review

Supposedly beards are on their “way out” again, which means they’ll no longer be synonymous with fashion-conscious youths, and once again be the domain of the comic book-reading super-nerd. As it should be.

Here’s one guy who almost certainly won’t be shaving, lest he become simply Hero. I speak of The Bearded Hero, and you can play his debut app outing for £1.49 at the App Store.

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Blackwell 1: Legacy iOS review

Hey, you know what’s fun? Point and click adventures, and they just so happen to work fantastically on ye olde touchscreen, as evidenced by… that one with the ginger FBI lady. Ah! Cognition: An Erica Reed Thriller. Good stuff.

Developer Wadjet Eye Games has released a bundle of excellent point and click adventures on the App Store, and the first one I’m checking out is Blackwell 1: Legacy. It’s real good, man. Real good.

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Paperama iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jul. 16 at 17:00

Paperama iOS review

I really should stop reviewing free games, as it’s always the same story: you’re out for a “free” meal but you have to wait several hours between courses unless you pay extra, and not forgetting the surcharge for cutlery.

I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this. Meet Paperama. It’s free on both the App Store and Google Play! Yes, FREE… to download. Lots more rambling below.

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Sonic Jump Fever iOS review

Remember the original Sonic Jump? It first appeared about 18 months ago, and scored an entirely decent 4/5 in my November 2012 review. “Sonic Jump won’t change your life,” I crooned. “But there have been far worse games in Sonic’s history.”

Enter: Sonic Jump Fever (App Store/Google Play). Is it worthy of a similarly decent score, or one of those “far worse games”? Spoiler: somewhere in the middle.

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Heli Hell iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jul. 9 at 17:00

Heli Hell iOS review

One of the Ten Commandments of Gaming states that Bullet Hell is Awesome: projectiles flying all over the shop, things constantly exploding, over-the-top heavy metal soundtrack with wailing solo; what’s not to like?

Phoenix HD proved that western developers are capable of producing top-notch bullet hell fun for mobiles and tablets, but Heli Hell... *sigh* Can you see where I’m going with this?

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Monster Hunter Freedom Unite for iOS: first impressions

I love Capcom; like, love Capcom. I own a PSP. I own a PS Vita. Hell, I even own Monster Hunter 3DS, yet I’ve never – somehow, against all logic – played a Monster Hunter game.

Until now, that is! Enter: Monster Hunter Freedom Unite for iOS (to use its full name), available for £10.49 on the App Store. Is it worth the price of admission? Hell yes!

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Hooligans iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jul. 4 at 17:00

Hooligans iOS review

Bit of a luxury complaint here, but I’m literally (not literally) drowning in review codes for apps these days, and obviously me being me, I’m just blasting through them – largely – at random.

So when a PR cutie – Empress of Babedom, Bestower of Compliments – pops up and says, “Hey, what about my game?” Well, you put that game to the top of the list. Enter: Hooligans.

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JELLIES! iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jul. 2 at 17:00

JELLIES! iOS review

Many a time in the world of mobile gaming, I’ve stumbled across an app that represents a good idea, poorly executed, whether it’s due to a lack of funds, or staff, or skill, or patience, or some combination of the above.

Aleksei Kalinin’s JELLIES! is almost the opposite, as the big chap takes a fairly unremarkable concept, and polishes it to within an inch of its life. Any good? Answer below.

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Digits iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 30 at 17:00

Digits iOS review

Being email buddies with developers/publishers is great in the sense that I’m right at the head of the queue for review codes whenever something new comes out, and often get to test stuff before it’s released.

The flip side of the coin is that it’s slightly awkward when something proves to be, well, kinda rubbish, but while I’d considered sidestepping Digits (App Store/Google Play) entirely, the more I played it, the more I enjoyed it. Phew.

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Marvel Pinball: Deadpool review

This afternoon I’ve mostly been playing the spanking new Marvel Pinball: Deadpool table, and I couldn’t resist having a quick blast on the old Star Wars tables while I was in there. Brilliant.

I should mention that I tested Marvel Pinball: Deadpool on the PS3, but barring an uncharacteristically shoddy port that flies in the face of everything Zen Pinball has released to date, you’re all but guaranteed a similarly enjoyable experience on your smartphone and/or tablet.

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Don’t Look Back iOS review

I described Terry Cavanagh as “either genius or madman – possibly both” when I reviewed the excellent VVVVVV last week, and he released what was officially recognised as one of the best smartphone games of 2012 in Super Hexagon.

As such, it made perfect sense (in my brain, at least) to check out Don’t Look Back (App Store/Google Play), thus checking off Terry’s entire smartphone arsenal (not including Super Gravitron, which is a minigame ripped from VVVVVV).

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Yo app spotlight

Yo app spotlight

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 21 at 17:00

I’ve occasionally been known to stray away from games and check out, y’know, apps, including Facebook Messenger, Catch Notes (RIP), Spotify

Here I’m scribbling a few hundred words about the latest inexplicable app-based phenomenon, namely Yo, which took just eight hours to develop. It exists to serve a single purpose: to allow users to send the word “Yo” to each other. No, I am not drunk, and no, I am not making this up.

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VVVVVV iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 18 at 17:00

VVVVVV iOS review

One of the best iOS titles of the past few years is easily Super Hexagon, a mind-boggling eye-melting twitch game from the brain of one Terry Cavanagh, who is either genius or madman – possibly both.

As such, I jumped at the chance to check out VVVVVV (App Store/Google Play), a critically acclaimed Cavanagh platformer that previously graced Windows, Mac OS and Nintendo 3DS. Spoiler alert: IT’S BLOODY BRILLIANT.

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Archangel iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 16 at 17:00

Archangel iOS review

I installed Archangel when it first touched down a few months ago, but it was put on the backburner following a handful of fairly negative user reviews and a subsequent price drop – now £1.49/£1.24 (App Store/Google Play) instead of £2.99.

Note to self: stop paying attention to other people, you fool. Turns out Archangel is actually pretty good.

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LEX iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 13 at 17:00

LEX iOS review

I recently included Kurt Bieg in Four indie mobile developers to watch, he having churned out 4 Thrones (a Solitaire variant with intriguing Game of Thrones logic), and the better-than-it-ought-to-be Hoots.

I’m pleased to say that LEX, a spanking new word game, is possibly my favourite Simple Machines release to date. Sales pitch below.

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All New Dreamdays iOS review

All New Dreamdays iOS review

Lewis Curdie  Jun. 11 at 17:00

Ok, class. Hands up how many of you have wondered how many weeks there are till Event X, and consequently found yourself flicking through your iPhone Calendar, using your finger to manually count? Obviously I can’t see your hands from here, so I’ll assume everyone has done that – myself included.

Some guy called Yao Liu has a solution to your countdown woes in the form of All New Dreamdays – Countdown to the Days that Matter (to use its full name). It’s kinda pretty good, though some of the functionality is a bit… off. EDIT: WAY OFF. Join me below for the official autopsy.

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Firefly Runner iOS review

Almost three years after it first touched down, Jetpack Joyride remains one of the best left-to-right endless runners on the App Store (and indeed Google Play), with tons of missions and game-changing upgrades and whatnot.

Red Kit Games’ Firefly Runner (App Store/Google Play) feels comparatively tame, almost like it’s been too busy smoking the wacky baccy to make any sort of effort.

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Glorkian Warrior: Trials of Glork iOS review

Hamburgers, tennis balls, basketballs, a talking backpack, ceramic cats, exploding birthday cake, and that eternal question: is a hot dog still hot if it exists in ice-cold space?

It can only be Glorkian Warrior: Trials of Glork/Laser Panic/Xenoscream/Alien Dance Party/Battle Patio. “You know what this Battle Patio needs? Less battle, more patio.”

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