It is a relatively light first week 2015 in terms of new releases for the App Store, but there are still a number of good looking titles that are worth mentioning.

First off is Area 777 from the folks over at [adult swim]. It is an odd combo of slot machine and defense game, where players are spinning for their lives as they try to defend a casino from an alien invasion. To succeed, you’ll need a good supply of luck, some big jackpots and make appropriate use of the special power chips.

drop-wizard_834955398_ipad_01.jpgNext up is one of this week’s nice little surprises. Coming from the creators of Lost Yeti, Drop Wizard is an entertaining pixel art action arcade game with a Super-Crate-Box style single-room level design where players can only control their wizard’s left and right movement. Whenever you drop down to a lower level you fire a spell in the direction you are facing and if you reach the bottom of the screen you can drop back through the top. The goal is to stun and then collect all of the enemies on the screen to complete each level, ending each level set with a boss battle. There are cool combos, special power ups and the game feels really fresh, yet retro at the same time. You won’t regret picking this one up while it is at its launch price of 99¢.

It has been some time since we’ve seen a new release from Little White Bear Studios, but this week they make a very promising return to the App Store with Puzzle Blitz. Put your puzzle solving skills to the test in this frenetic game in which you must complete as many of the game’s 450 puzzles as you can before time runs out. You do this by placing different shaped pieces in their correct locations to build a shape and every time you solve a puzzle, you get some additional time added to the clock. I’ve really enjoyed Little White Bear Studios previous puzzle titles so I’ll likely be picking this one up as well for quick bursts of fun.

spectrum-3d-avenue_881197394_ipad_02.jpgSpectrum is Bulkypix’s latest publishing effort, this time from developer 3D Avenue. It is a visually appealing gravity/maze platformer where players control a tadpole-like triops, carefully weaving around and through challenging sets of obstacles across 60 levels and multiple rich looking environments. The game offers both tilt and touch controls (as well as MFi controllers) and is on sale for 33% off through January 10th.

If you like your multiplayer battle game’s with a little more personal contact and face to face trash talking, then Battle Slimes may be right up your alley. This same-device, simultaneous, single-button multiplayer game pits you against up to three friends (or AI) as you fight it out to be the last slime standing. You shoot automatically, so you just need to tap your color slime’s button to jump and try to grab the spawning power ups which could help weight victory in your favor. There are both timed and limited live game modes available as well as multiple battle arenas. This looks like a fun one to play with a group of family and friend or use to decide who has to do the dishes.

Nitrome (Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage) returns to the App Store this week with a crazy looking (destructive) puzzle platformer called Gunbrick. Set in a future ” where cars are obsolete” and you pilot (or perhaps more appropriately…roll) your gunbrick, a cube-shaped mode of transportation with a gun one side and a shield on the other through levels using “swipe and tap controls”. Fight off wasteland mutants, crazed nerds and more as you work your way up to some ‘epic boss fights’.

mayday-deep-space_695138358_ipad_02.jpgMayday! Deep Space is quite a cool and unique narrative adventure game in which all movement is controlled by your voice. The game’s interface is shaped like a communicator with an embedded display of a top-down view of the inside of a stranded spaceship. You receive a distress call on the communicator from a lone survivor trapped on the ship and you must use a specified set of voice commands to guide him safely to certain points on the ship, avoiding the virus-infected crew members. The captivating story by bestselling techno-thriller author Daniel H Wilson and the way you interact with your device make this a really immersive experience. The game also features excellent voice-acting work by Osric Chau of the TV series Supernatural and Grimm’s Bitsie Tulloch and Claire Coffee. If you are one of those people who complains that there is nothing fresh or original on the App Store, this app will change your mind.

Inconceivable! Here’s another unexpected treat…The Princess Bride – The Official Game has arrived on the App Store courtesy of Gameblend Studios. The app is a collection of 4 mini games based around classic scenes from the hit 1987 film, The Princess Bride. Survive the Shrieking Eels, by tapping them before they reach the princess, Climb the Cliffs of Insanity, tilting to avoid falling rocks, birds and other obstacles, Sword duel with Inigo and Wrestle your favorite Giant. Each game has multiple objectives and you must complete objectives to unlock all four games. Todd Bright’s animated renditions of all of your favorite characters look incredible. If you backed the Princess Bride playing card Kickstarter in 2013, then you may have seen his work. A bit of fan service fun, The Princess Bride. The Princess Bride fans will certainly want to consider checking this one out.

space-marshals_834315918_ipad_02Finally that brings us to the final featured app of the week, Space Marshals. A top-down, tactical Sci-fi Wild West shooter, which, from what I’ve seen, looks like it carries all of that usual Pixelbite polish and looks graphically stunning. Sure, it is a bit of a departure from Pixelbite’s racing roots, but it looks quite good. You play as a specialist named Burton who is hunting down dangerous fugitives in the aftermath of a big prison break. Switch up your load-outs and utilize your arsenal of weapons, grenades, mines, disguises and even a silencer to get the jump on your skips. The adventure plays out over three episodes with chapter one available now, but it is unclear if the other two chapters will be free updates or IAP.

That’s all I have for you this week…enjoy!

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