adventure-beaks_669796993_ipad_03With many game developers off at GDC this week, showcasing upcoming projects, this initially looked like it might be a fairly light week of new releases, but that doesn’t appear to be the case.

Starting (as always) with the freebies, we have a new game from GameResort, who’ve just launched a cute-looking penguin platformer called Adventure Beaks in which players run (pretty well for a penguin I must say), slide, jump and swim through 50+ twisty levels filled with traps and other obstacles to trip up their little waddling feet up.

Chillingo tries their hand at the town building sim genre with their latest game Tiny City with developer Dodo Games. Containing more than 100 unique building types to construct and over 1000 quests to complete, not to mention some decent looking graphics, this could be an enticing new entry for fans of this genre, depending on how the in-game economy has been constructed.

the-collectables_733162917_ipad_03Speaking of enticing…after a soft-launch abroad, Mobage and award-winning developer Crytek, havefinally released The Collectables worldwide. It is an amazing looking free-to-play mobile game in which players must “master the unique skills of their military units as they wage war in stunning 3D environments and aim to blow the enemy sky high.” Level up your troops and expand your arsenal using a special collectible card system, then lead your army into battle against hordes of enemies. The game certainly looks fantastic, now we finally get to see how it plays.

In Funday Factory’s latest offering, Scallywags you are a ship’s captain, under attack by all manner of thieving pirates. Protect yer treasure by tapping the screen to fire ye cannons and put some lead in them Scallywags as quick as ye can, before they get away with yer precious gold.

The final freebie is a deck-building, card battling game called Hero Brigade Brawl, which was adapted from a successfully Kickstarted tabletop game. While unfortunately not a direct port of the original, Hero Brigade Brawl is still a fun, lighter, mobile-friendly 2-player game in which one player leads the comic book heroes and the other the villains. Players take turns laying down up to four cards on their play mat, after which an attack phase is resolved and play continues in this fashion until either one of the players runs out of cards or all five of the spaces on their play mat are vacant after an attack phase. There are number of additional aspects I’m skipping over, but that’s the gist. The game has a bit more strategy than it may seem at first glance and this is a fun freebie, with a cool comic book aesthetic and a great collection of original heroes and villains. Hero Brigade Brawl offers both online, turn-based multiplayer as well as local pass and play. There is an optional $1.99 one-time IAP to remove the ads.

quarto!_731893311_ipad_02Quarto! is a classic 2-player strategy board game in which combatants take turns selecting the piece that their opponent must then place upon the 4 by 4 gameboard grid. A player wins the match by being the first to complete a row (vertical, horizontal or diagonal) of four pieces which share one common attribute (circular/square, small/large, red/blue or perforated/solid). The app provides 4 levels of AI players as well as online Game Center matches, a same device multiplayer mode and a special advanced mode. I’ll definitely be picking this one up, sounds like it is right up my alley.

Perfection! is another interesting looking puzzle/logic game, but honestly I have no idea how it even plays. I’ve reached out to the developer Stuart McLean, for more information, so we’ll see.

Pew Pew Pew! Our next two paid titles are retro space shooters, the first of which is called TriBlaster and it comes from Bulkypix. It is a vector-style game in which you strafe your triangular-shaped ship left and right along the (differing shaped) structure, shooting at the enemies coming toward you from the horizon line, gaining additional lives the longer you survive. Go for the high score and see if you can survive all 100 levels.

warp-5-overdrive_814321364_ipad_02Warp 5 Overdrive also goes for that retro feel, but takes a very different approach, putting the action on a multi-dimensional plane where the direction of attack seems to be constantly in flux, requiring players to shoot and rotate around a central column to destroy enemies, fire at lowering or rising rings of blocks and survive obstacles. A test of reflexes, Warp 5 Overdrive looks like an intensely fun retro arcade, high scoring game, complete with a fast paced chiptune soundtrack that “will blow your noodle”.

Developer Dawn of Play first impressed us with Dream of Pixels, their very unique take on tetris-style gameplay. Now they are back with Roll Back Home, an eye-catching sketch-art physics puzzle game with visuals that would make a-ha proud. Tiliting your device to make a ball roll and jump, you must guide your sphere through a series of underground mazes, interacting with objects like swings, battling rams, barrels and more along the way to successfully escape the sewers.

Braveland is a turn-based action strategy game that plays out on a hexagonal battlefield. You are a warrior’s son whose village was cruelly raided by bandits. Now you must garner your wits and command an army of archers, scouts, healers, footmen, arbalesters and more in 50 different battles that will test your tactical prowess. With appealing hand-drawn graphics, a menagerie of warriors and creatures, boss battles and strategical gameplay, Braveland appears to pack a lot of bang for the buck (or in this case $3).

star-horizon_814466047_ipad_03Finally, Star Horizon is a gorgeous looking on-rails space shooter from first-time iOS developer Tabasco Interactive.

“Play as John, a private in the service of the Federation. Focus on amusing story and dynamic battles. Journey through the cosmos, upgrade your ship, make important story decisions and have fun fighting those epic bosses!”

This is a game that has been getting a good deal of pre-release buzz and aside from The Collectables, it is probably the highest profile title of the week. Along with touch controls, the game is also compatible with MFi gamepads, for those looking for more of a tactile experience.

And that’ll do it for this week, though there is a fun tabletop game port coming on Firday as well…but you’ll just have to wait for another post on that one.

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