Cops hot on your tail. Spike strips deployed. Roadblocks erected. Traffic whizzing by. Nitro boost. All these would sound familiar to anyone that’s played a variant of the Need for Speed racing franchise before. The studio behind Need for Speed: Most Wanted for mobile devices – Firemonkeys – has built the game by keeping the core essence of its console and PC predecessors, but fine-tuned things so that it suits the mobile market.
Death Dome, by Glu Mobile, is not really anything surprising. We’ve seen this same cycle play out before in all sorts of genres. One or two titles come out and create a demand for a certain style and we get to witness a parade of clones, games that attempt to not only copy the original success of those earlier titles but that often add nothing to the genre. Many gamers buy these copycat titles and relish in what is essentially more of the same thing, feeding the parade. It’s not that I mind players or developers who enjoy copycats and repeated mechanics. As long as everyone is having fun then all is good. The problem comes in when we have a harder time finding original content thanks to games like Death Dome taking up space on virtual shelf of the Play store.
Townsmen, a new virtual city builder by Handygames, is so enjoyable that I had a hard time putting it down. The strange thing is that there isn’t much to the game, if we could even call it a game. Really the title is more akin to those cool ant farms we had as a kid, and possibly related more closely to those giant ant farms that we see in a zoo or private collection. I sat and watched as my hands worked, unable to control what they were doing. This game, this tiny virtual world, had taken over my body and kept me glued to my Nexus 7 tablet. Why did this happen? I have no idea.
Meet Max McMann a.k.a. The Devil’s Attorney, a shrewd lawyer who’s bent on setting free those who’ve veered onto the wrong side of the law. He’s blunt, slightly on the rude side of things and has a penchant for humor at the same time, and he doesn’t care so much how he wins cases, just so long he wins them. He may be a champion in the courtroom, but can he win our hearts?
It is always refreshing to come across a title that employs an innovative gameplay, for far too often games are unoriginal and clichéd in the mobile space. Sumioni Demon Arts, originally a PS Vita title, bucks the trend as it makes use of a unique gameplay style. The game has a good premise, but does it deliver?
The auto-running platforming genre on mobile devices is blooming, no thanks to the fact that you don’t need to control the character’s movement and can instead focus on other aspects of the game. One new game that utilizes this same base principle is Polara, which mashes together the runner and platformer genre to come up with an ingenious game.
2K Games are renowned for their sports simulation games, including the NBA 2K series on PCs and consoles. Last week, many Android gamers (including me) were caught off-guard when 2K Games decided to unleash a mobile version of their latest title, NBA 2K13, on Android. Coming from such illustrious developers, is the mobile version of the latest addition to their basketball franchise worth buying?
At some point, you've probably dreamed of living the life of a subway-surfing, graffiti-spraying, boombox-toting, hoverboard riding kid. Living life on the edge and running from the law. Jumping over trains is your 9-to-5. Every day, 24/7, making your living off of coins you find laying all over the railways. It's a pretty humble lifestyle, but because because you're the definition of "Cool", you can handle it, right? Who are you kidding, of course you can. You're no match for that cop and his dog. Why? Because you're a Subway Surfer. Okay, that's kind of a grittier take on the super-colorful, hyper-stylized world of Subway Surfers, but if you've ever fantasized about subway-surfing, this game is for you. And if you haven't guessed the title by now, the game I'm talking about is Subway Surfers.
Sega’s latest game to hit Android, Zaxxon Escape, is a remake of the classic arcade game from the 80’s, Zaxxon. However, due to me having never played the original Zaxxon arcade game because I wasn’t born yet then, I’ll just review this modern remake based on its own merits.
I missed The Bard’s Tale when it came out in 2004, but did play it a bit through the OnLive service on my PC. I’ve missed a lot of single-player titles, mainly because my normal favorite subject (before getting my first Android, of course) is massively multiplayer titles. I’ve noticed how the number of older titles being brought back to life thanks to mobile devices and the Play market keeps rising. It’s very possible that many of these titles will be seen by a new generation and possibly have more impact than they did originally, thanks in large part to their new, portable nature. I know that I was more impressed with The Bard’s Tale this time around because I was able to hold it in my hand. What would have normally been older looking graphics now look sharp and crisp thanks to the smaller, higher-resolution screen.
Google Play may not short of auto-running platformers, but Rayman Jungle Run is a welcome addition. Well, a more than welcome addition in fact. Powered by the same Ubisoft engine that Rayman Origins runs on and developed by Pastagames for mobile devices (I’m hungry already), Rayman Jungle Run is the kind of game you immediately appreciate the moment you start playing.