star-wars-tiny-death-star_663576850_ipad_02What a monstrous, jam-packed night of new high (and not so high)-profile releases, covering a wide a range of genres and coming from both indies and game publishing veterans alike. There is definitely something here for everyone, from free-to-play to $4.99 there are prices to suit every iOS gamer’s budget Though you are probably going to be tempted to pick up many (if not all) of the $4.99 releases so this may be an expensive night…but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Don’t worry if you just blew your entire gaming budget for the rest of the year by picking up that new iPad Air, we’ll start with the free stuff that wont cost you anything to play (at least initially).

Talk about two great things that go great together…LucasArts and NimbleBit have teamed up to release Star Wars: Tiny Death Star, a Star Wars themed version of NimbleBit’s extremely addictive tower building time management game Tiny Tower, where players try to build the largest Death Star they can. All the rooms, and characters are based on the Star Wars this looks SO GOOD! A must download for sure! Let’s just hope that Zynga doesn’t get any ideas about starting another Clone War.

striker-soccer-2_635253394_ipad_03Everplay launched Miner Problem, an endless runner with “tons of gadgets”, Chillingo published Striker Soccer 2, a nice looking free-to-play arcade soccer game which I think may be the sequel to (or updated and re-branded version) of last year’s Olympics-themed soccer game Striker Soccer London published by U-Play Online.

Six plus months after Android, iOS finally gets their own release of PBA® Bowling Challenge. Was it worth the wait? I have no idea…but it is free to play, from the PBA, and I enjoy real 10 pin bowling so I’ll definitely be checking this one out, as it looks like it offers some crazy ball power ups.

Digital Fury’s Project Peon is a sandbox style physics game where players design their own carts using a selection of components and use drive them to “collect the peons from the wormhole and transport them to your spaceship”. It looks a bit like Bad Piggies, but without the cute characters (which some may appreciate).

Now for some paid apps…

debonair-facial-hair_718942037_ipad_01If there is one thing that’s probably missing from your iDevice game library, it is a game that centers around facial hair. Perfectly timed for a Movember release, Debonair Facial Hair is a game in which you style the mustaches of the oddball cast of characters residing in the quaint seaside village of Stashton Upon Sea. With 186 different mustache styles…this is an idea that may just be crazy enough to work…I gotta say, I’m intrigued.

Blocky Roads looks like Minecraft meets Rivals in this block track racer where you select a vehicle or craft your own vehicle (building it block by block) and then try to tackle the bumpy terrain of the obstacle laden tracks. Seems like the next logical progression for developer Dogbyte Games who are combining their love of 8-bit with their experience in creating off-road and racing games.

We may have survived Halloween, but it seems that vampires are still wreaking havoc in LA and in Dark Day LA it is up to the snipers to take them out. In an interesting twist, the game is played by two players on the same iPad (split screen or full screen) with one taking on the role of the vampires, trying to stealthy move about the city, draining victims and the other as the sniper trying to take the bloodsuckers out.

meltdown_722231663_ipad_02I’ve been hearing a lot of good early buzz surrounding Bulkypix’s latest publishing effort, Meltdown©. It is a dual-stick arcade shooter that pits man against robot with fire and melee weapons and there’s even online cross-platform co-operative play for up to 4 players.

Supposedly from the inventor of Tetris, we get a new neon-infused puzzle arcade game called Dwice in which players hold and drag shapes such that they collide with like shapes as a plethora of shapes constantly and frantically cascade down the screen. A test of reflexes, Dwice looks like it will have that same sense of constant impending doom and one more try compulsion that made Tetris so popular.

Following in the footsteps of Super Hexagon and Boson X, Octagon is a heart-racing 360 degree rotational, stay on the platform as your race through a tunnel game. The graphics look great and I can already feel my blood pressure and anxiety rising as I’m watching the trailer.

Ubisoft returns with more Rayman running fun, this time set in the festive world(s) of Rayman Fiesta Run. Help Rayman as he jumps, flies, punches, swims, slides, shrinks and (of course) runs through over 75 new levels spread across 4 different worlds and does battle with 3 new bosses. Fans of the original will surely be picking this one up.

monsters-rising_692484676_ipad_02Monsters Rising is a 3D action-strategy game from Nine Tail Studios that puts players in control of their own squad of monsters (which look pretty cool btw)in which each species has their own unique set of skills. The actions are gesture-based, with differing gestures assigned to a variety of attacks to give you a more hands-on feel when attacking and attempting to take back Earth from those pesky humans. As you progress through the single-player campaign you can continually hone the skills of your monsters to best assist you in missions.

At last we arrive at the most expensive of the featured new releases, all of which are from excellent existing franchises, making these pretty much guaranteed pickups.

The talented team at inkle is back with the second installment of their brilliant Sorcery! interactive gamebook series. The story picks up right where the first one finished and your characters from the first book can be carried over to the sequel, though it is not necessary to have played the first game and you can start a new adventure in this sequel. With more than double the content of the first title and a new gambling game this one should keep you busy for a good long while.

lego-the-lord-of-the-rings_664783704_ipad_01Warner Bros. is back with what is sure to be yet another amazing iOS port of a LEGO game. This time they are tackling their LEGO® The Lord of the Rings™ game. It follows the story-line of the original Lord of The Rings Trilogy and is infused with that unique sense of LEGO fun and humor, making it approachable by virtually all ages. It weighs in at a meaty 1.5 GB and you’ll need 3 GB of space just to install it, so hopefully you opted for at least the 32GB model. As is usually the case with these LEGO iOS titles, $5 is an absolute steal compared to what the console versions of the same games cost on release day.

Finally 2K Games is back with even more Sid Meier high-flying turn-based adventuring in Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol: Pacific Skies. Unlike the first title in this excellent series, which was free-to try with a bunch of in-app purchases to unlock the full content of the game, Pacific Skies is a single payment of $4.99 to buy the full game right away. No IAP. If you want to see what the gameplay is like then you can just download the original Ace Patrol and check it out. The first game was so good, so I’ll be climbing into the cockpit of this one as well..

And that will do it for tonight..

Please leave us a comment below letting us know which of these games (or others) that you’ll be picking up this week.

Go to the second page of this post to watch the trailers for these games.