This week, May 16-20, significant updates were released by major titles, including Angry Birds, Need for Speed and Infinity Blade. Rovio’s Angry Birds Rio is receiving a new expansion pack called “Beach Volley” - which adds thirty new stages to the game that is already sixty level strong. Its sister game, Angry Birds Seasons, is due to be updated mid June. EA’s Need for Speed Hot Pursuit update is now available, and adds a new feature called ‘Autolog’ - where you’ll “be able to track your career progress, personal best times and how they compare against your friends” and more. Finally, Infinity Blade now has an ‘Arena’ that allows multiplayer game challenges with friends through Game Center.
148Apps Editor Rob LeFebvre continued his monthly series on iOS editorials by publishing “Why, Freemium, Why?!” in response to the App Store’s love/hate relationship with the controversial pricing model, whereby consumers get the core part of a game or application for free, and then have to pay for extra levels or features. “As an avid gamer across all platforms, I’ve seen my share of games. And, to be honest, Freemium as a business model doesn’t inspire me to play a game” writes Rob LeFebvre. “Many of these games seem to be about the mechanics alone ... we need something new, if the freemium model isn’t to crush itself under its own weight and continued copy-cat-ism that reigns in space.” Read the full editorial here.
The Editor’s Choice badge was awarded to Japanese this week, an English-Japanese and Japanese-English language converter with an extensive dictionary database, as well as tools like flashcards and handwriting recognition. Bonnie Eisenman reports. “I’m going to be studying Japanese in Japan this summer, and I knew that I’d need a dictionary ... Japanese is a comprehensive dictionary app with all the features that I could ever ask for, save perhaps for voice recognition.” The language application features approximately 160 000 words, as well as 12 000 kanji entries, the modern Japanese method of writing. “It’s impressively comprehensive, including everything from a giant database of words and example sentences to flashcards and handwriting recognition for kanji. The only thing it lacks is audio.” Japanese is available to download for $9.99.
Bungie, the creator of the Halo and Marathon franchises, is believed to be coming to the App Store sometime in the near future. Through an official brand name filing description, the company wrote: “Computer game software for use on mobile and cellular phones” - and we all know that means the iPhone. Read all about it here.
That’s all for this week! Remember that you can follow us via Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed and through a myriad of RSS feeds that will keep you in the loop about all the latest, most exciting applications and games. Click here and choose the options which suit you best.