This week we have several time-twisting titles based of TV properties, a creative little digital card game port, fresh takes on both boxing and MMA and yet another profession for Dr. Panda.
First up for licensed franchises we have Pocket Mortys a crazy, funny Pokémon-inspired battling game from the folks at [adult swim] and developed by Big Pixel Studios. Featuring the title characters from the AS’s hit animated series Rick and Morty, you play as snarky super scientist Rick, traveling through the multiverse with his intelligently-challenged grandson Morty. You uncover a multitude of alternate, rival Ricks and your Morty(s) must do battle with these Mortys “to prove that you’re the greatest Morty trainer of all space and time”. Craft Mind Control Chips from various items you pick up along the way and capture more Mortys to build the best team possible. The game is basically a simpler parody of Pokémon that fans of the Adult Swim’s animate series will likely enjoy.
Next is Star Trek Timelines, the latest title from the team at Disruptor Beam, which I first got a glimpse of at PAX East last year. The Federation was enjoying an unprecedented era of peace until a temporal crisis caused chaos and unrest. A Trekkie (or Trekker’s) dream, in Star Trek Timelines, players get to assemble their ultimate Enterprise crew from characters across all of the Star Trek series. Properly assign crew members for away missions and use their special skills to successfully complete missions and unlock additional characters and crew members. The game is free-to-play, but does feature some rather expensive IAP options for those who don’t want to grind and unlock some of the most desirable characters right away. Timelines offers some excellent, original voice narration by Q (John de Lancie) as well as voice clips from many of the other characters (prob taken from the series). I should note that I have been experiencing a bit of crashing on my iPhone 6 Plus with this title, I’m not sure if this is a widespread problem, but hoping to resolve it soon so I can play more of this.
Finally for all of those Smurf fans out there, Ubisoft has just launched Smurfs Epic Run a runner featuring everyone’s favorite little blue creatures. It’s up to you to help save the Smurfs from being captured by the evil Gargamel.
Mealtime Sabotage is a neat little card battling game where players are competing to craft meals (consisting of a drink, entree, two sides and a dessert) with the fewest number of calories. As the name suggests, you can attempt to sabotage your opponent’s meal by playing cards which add calories, or steal/swap to get one of their lower calorie items. Mealtime Sabotage is only a single-player experience, but each level offers unique bonus goals to complete which do a great job of switching up the gameplay. These can be anything from limiting the number of cards you can play or the total calories of your meal. Apparently Mealtime Sabotage is based on a successfully Kickstarted physical card game, which I had not heard of, but I’m happy to have discovered it through this free iOS digital release. This game is a nice little tasty digital treat this week.
Lets get ready to rumble…
MMA Federation is an MMA fighting turn-based strategy game in which players pre-program their attacks and defenses and then see how they play out. Depending on whether you are the attacker or defender, the player selects between a low, mid or high attack or defense (or some combination of the three as action points allow) and then see how things play out. Between bouts you can train your fighter to improve stats. While perhaps not the action packed-arcade style some would prefer, it is an interesting idea, with a nice 3D animated art style.
The latest offering from publisher tinyBuild (and developer Lazy Bear) is Punch Club, a really cool looking story-driven boxing tycoon management game. “Your father was brutally murdered before your eyes. Now you must train hard, eat chicken and punch dudes in the face to earn your place in the Punch Club ranks, and discover who ended your father’s life.” Train your fighter, managing time spent on working out, sleeping, eating, fighting and other activities. As you complete fights (win or lose) you gain skill points which can then be used to expand your skill tree by unlocking a variety of new attacks and abilities. Overall, Punch Club sounds like a really neat concept and I can’t wait to spend some time diving into this one.
Fallen Tree Games Ltd, creators of the fantastic Quell puzzle game series and developer of the equally good, Highrise Heroes are back with Swapperoo. It mashes a puzzle element with a standard match-3 to create an all-new gaming experience. The game grid is filled with various shaped and colored pieces. Square pieces cannot be moved on their own, but triangular, arrow pieces may swap with the piece next to them as long as they are in the direction of the arrow. Once you make a row or column of three or more tiles of the same color, the tiles disappear. That’s just the basics and then the game starts getting crazy fun, adding new pieces with their own rules and behaviors as well as new goals, like clearing 40 purple pieces or clearing 20 skulls, things really start to get interesting. Certain tiles need o be matched within a specified number of moves or they’ll blow up and you have to retry the level. This is NOT your typical match three and even if you say you hate match three games, this one may very well surprise and delight you. Swapperoo is currently available at a launch price of just 99¢ (66% off its regular price of $2.99).
Venture Kid is a challenging, classic 8-bit, Mega Man style platformer from FDG, complete with NES style controls at the bottom of the screen controlling left and right movement along with A and B buttons for jumping and shooting. There is an infectious chiptunes soundtrack, fun boss battles and varying enemy types. There may only be 9 levels, but don’t let that put you off, as there is plenty of gameplay here for just 99¢.
ZEN Studios nails it again with 2 new Star Wars tables themed off of the new Force Awakens blockbuster film. There is a ‘light-side’ table, The Force Awakens, which has players visiting Jakku and various other locations from the film. Balancing out the Force, there is also a ‘dark-side’ table, Might of the First Order (my fave of the two), which features a really cool two-level table inset within one another. Both are excellent additions to Zen’s robust catalog of digital tables and are sure to delight Star Wars and pinball fans alike. You can download these tables for $1.99 each in either the recently updated Star Wars™ Pinball 4 or Zen Pinball apps.
How about something for the kids?
While not specifically designed solely for kids, Puzzlewood Quests offers a selection of characters specifically designed for kids ages 4-7 with limited reading required. It is a neat take on the standard dungeon crawling RPG where attacks on your opponent are completed by quickly and successfully performing brain teaser mini game like word scrambles, math games, picture puzzles, coin counting, matching games and more. The faster you solve the brain teaser the more hits you’ll get in before your opponent attacks. You’ll quest through the 9 worlds, batting over 600 enemies. Successfully besting your opponent will earn you XP and eventually, leveling up earns you skill points which can then be applied to your character to increase his/her stats.
What could be more fun for a kid than candy and pandas? Dr. Panda is back in Dr. Panda Candy Factory which, as the title suggests, sees this popular panda running a candy factory. From chocolate to bubblegum, gummies to sweets, kids get to design and create their own candy and then see what Doctor Panda’s friends think of them. Experiment with colors and flavors and even play with a friend, sibling or parent on the same device in a special split screen mode. Looks like another fun Dr. Panda title that youngsters will enjoy.
A gorgeous 2.5D action platformer, Momoka: An Interplanetary Adventure is a delightful new title specifically designed for iOS gamers. Players control a girl named Momoka as she explores her home planet of Haruto and the rest of her solar system and protects its inhabitants from various enemies. The non-linear setup of the game gives players a nice sense of freedom as they try to complete various missions, find items and upgrades and unlock additional areas to explore. According to the developer the experience will take 5-6 hours to complete the main story or 7-8 hours if you are a completionist. Howwever, from my own personal experience with the game thus far, I personally think these number are a little on the low side. An amazing iOS debut to say the least. Small UK developer, Felwig Games is a studio to watch.
And that’s all I have for you this week…enjoy!