Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4S
Graphics / Sound Rating: Game Controls Rating: Gameplay Rating: Replay Value Rating:
Monstaaa! is a new physics puzzler that players control completely by tilting their device. In this game, players precisely tilt their device to guide rolling bugs into the mouth of an awaiting cave monster, called Monstaaa. Of course, in the caves where Monstaaa lives, getting bugs into his mouth is not always easy. In these caves there are many dangerous obstacles, like spikes and fire, that will destroy the bugs before Monstaaa can snack on them if the player isn't careful.
This game requires finesse. It takes only very slight movements of the device to send bugs rolling off in different directions. To enforce that need for finesse, the levels are very challenging and require players to focus on fine control instead of rocking their device back and forth haphazardly until something happens. The tilt controls work very well too, they are responsive and consistent, and they allow the fine control required to enjoy the game.
Of course, as a puzzle game, Monstaaa! has elements in its levels that take it beyond just getting a bug to a cute monster. Some levels have keys that must be collected first to open doors. Other levels will have more than one bug and players must pay attention to how every bug moves together as they endeavor to get each one into Monstaaa's mouth. There are also various bugs that act differently by doing things like changing their size to make them too big to fit through certain spaces in the cave or eating other bugs in the level. These mechanics are all very well thought out and work together in splendid fashion to make a game that is quite challenging, but not impossible to figure out with a few minutes of thought.
This is a really gorgeous game. The hand painted qualities of the characters and other game elements all blend into a beautifully seamless environment. The controls are some of the better tilt controls to be found on an iOS game right now, and the gameplay is superb. While the idea of fighting physics to feel a little monster might not be the most original, it is very well executed here and the quality of the experience is undeniable.
Happy Holidays! If you're like many folks, you'll have gotten a new iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch this holiday season. And if you're looking for a place to learn all about this new magical device in your life, you've come to the right place. 148Apps has tons of resources on using your new device and filling it with the best thing about it: apps.
Learning The Basics
The operating system of these devices is one of the most intuitive around. However, there's always more waiting under the hood to make things just that much easier or better on us. While your new iPhone or iPad may not come with a manual, you can download one fairly simply from the iBooks Store. First, grab [appinline:364709193,"iBooks"], then grab the manual for your new iPad, iPhone, or
Speaking of the operating system, we've written a few articles about the latest and greatest from Cupertino right here on 148Apps. Check out our Full Feature Roundup on iOS 5.
We even published some downloadable magazine-style User Guides last year, on each of the devices. Feel free to grab them and read through them - many of the tips and tricks included there are just as relevant today as they were then. iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
To the iCloud!!!
You may have seen some of the information about iCloud in the Apple TV commercials. It's a great system that gives you unprecedented storage and sharing options. Here's a short intro to iCloud from Apple.
We've got you covered with iCloud as well. Here's information on both moving your data to the iCloud to help keep things synced and backed up. You may also need more information on how you set up iCloud in a multiple user family. This details all the ins and outs of multiple user groups who may otherwise share iTunes accounts.
There Really is an App for That
Once you've got a good handle on using that sleek new iOS device, you'll of course want to dive in and start downloading apps. Whether you're an avid gamer, a music lover, a book reader or even (gasp) all three, you'll find everything you need in the iTunes Store.
When it comes to Apps, iOS has no peer. There are over 500,000 apps in the App Store, so you'll doubtlessly find something you like. The trick, however, is filtering through all of those apps to find the specific things you want. That can be tricky, but luckily there are many ways to help.
First off are our very own reviews. We review a ton of apps weekly to give you the best recommendations about the best apps we find. Be sure to look through our Reviews lists, which can be filtered by type of app as well as sorted by date, app name, or app rating. If you just want to read reviews of our highest rated iPad games, for example, it's an easy click. And for on the go browsing of 148Apps reviews, grab the [appinline: 444792529,"148Apps App"].
In addition, we have our famous Price Drops lists, which can be sorted to just show the latest drops in prices, or even just the latest FREE apps. Very handy, if we say so ourselves. If you're looking for the very latest additions to the App Store, we have a list for that, as well as one for the Top Apps across all the App Store categories for each device. Then of course there's always the very best of the best in free apps available in the free games and free apps lists.
If you want even more app discovering goodness, you might want to check out a few apps made to help you wade through the App Store. Some of our favorites are [appinline:387037496,"AppShopper"], [appinline:348286549,"Chomp"], and [appinline: 383151779,"AppZapp"]. There are even specific apps to help you find the latest free apps. Some of the best include [appinline:348650932,"Free App A Day"], [appinline: 470693788,"Apps Gone Free"], and [appinline:484505841, "Free App Alliance"]. These will all help you sort and find and browse apps and games to your heart's content; we use them all the time to find new great apps to use and write about on the site.
Where Else To Find 148Apps?
We're everywhere, really. However, the best places to find us are on Twitter, Facebook, and now even Google+. Be sure to come visit and chat with us there. We're ever so responsive.
Free Apps You Shouldn't Do Without
Now, we wouldn't be the premier Apps review site without some sort of parting gift, now would we? How about some apps you really should try out? To make the deal even sweeter, let's make them free apps.
iBooks, Nook, & Kindle - Reading ebooks is all the rage these days, especially on these fancy new iOS devices. We love reading on our iPad, and have even been known to crack a virtual spine or two on our iPhone while waiting at the doctor's office. For those of you with shorter attention spans, there's always Newsstand, iOS's magazine subscription service. Some of the best ereader apps include [appinline:364709193,"iBooks"], [appinline:384910586,"Nook for iPhone"], [appinline:373582546,"Nook for iPad"], and [appinline:302584613,"Kindle"]. Happy reading!
Facebook, Twitter, & Instant Messaging - Keep in touch with family, friends, and us - your favorite Apps website - with these free social networking apps. Tell 'em 148Apps sent you!
There's [appinline:284882215], [appinline:333903271] though [appinline: 428851691,"Tweetbot"] is much better, though not free like the official Twitter app.
For instant messaging, check out [appinline:336435697,"imo"] and [appinline:405179691,"imo for iPad"]. And don't forget [appinline: 304878510,"Skype"] and [appinline: 442012681,"Skype for iPad"]. We've become big fans of [appinline: 392796698 ,"GroupMe"] lately too for group communication.
Gaming on the Cheap - Now, we put out a sweet weekly article that tells you about the latest FREE gaming apps, but here are a few we think you won't want to miss. We could go on for hours about it, really, but these should get you off to a good start.
For a great free endless runner, check out [appinline:420009108,"Temple Run"]. A wonderful game. For some great physics puzzle fun, the new king is [appinline:467810884,"Where's My Water? Free"] and you can never go wrong with the classic [appinline:409807569,"Angry Birds Free"]. A couple other free games we really like include [appinline:466965151,"The Sims Freeplay"] and [appinline:422667065,"TinyTower"].
You should also check out our massive iOS game and app sale post. There are tons of great deals and quite a few temporarily free apps there. Be sure to grab the great [appinline: 457446957,"Jetpack Joyride"] while it's free. It's one of our favorite games of the year.
We hope you've enjoyed learning about your new magical iOS devices. The iPad, iPhone and iPod touch are some of the best new gadgets to give or receive. Be sure to come back often to see what we have for you; we're always looking to find the news or apps you want to know about first. From all of us here to all of you out there, Happy Holidays!!!
This week, July 25-29, the freemium/free to play revolution continued as Carter Dotson explored the recent decrease in premium game revenue on the App Store. Dotson writes, "Not only are free to play games now becoming the biggest source of revenue for games on the App Store, they’re also potentially more open for competition. The top 10 publishers of free games account for 27% of the total downloads of the top 300 free games, versus the top 10 publishers of the top 300 paid games generating 54% of those downloads, and one of those publishers is one-man developer Andreas Illiger of Tiny Wings fame.
Over at 148apps.biz, Sharon L. Cohen explored app developer's needs for solid, substantive analytics, and suggested Chomp as a good source: "The latest Chomp stats...provide continued insights into the way that users are searching for apps. Previously, 148apps.biz reported that fewer and fewer queries are for specific app names: For every one hundred searches, only nine were for the name of an application. This statistic flopped in May. 'Compared to April, the ratio of non-app name versus name queries shifted 9% in favor of name searches.' Ah, the fickleness of users. The moral of this story is continue to place an emphasis on key words and search engine optimization including brand promotion. In other words, cover all your bases."
GiggleApps reviewed Creative Genius on the Go, an app designed to stretch kids' imaginations, even as they are trapped in the back seat during long trips: "This app offers 150 different scenarios for everyone to consider: 50 'What Ifs?' that prompt the players to describe how the impossible may be possible; 50 'Imagine That,' which are mind-stretching challenges for boosting brainpower and relieving boredom and screams from the back seat, and 50 'Wack-tivities,' or silly diversions for when everyone is tired and can’t wait to stop at a hotel and get something to eat."
Chomp is designed to show you the best of the App Store from user input and live user reviews. With its Facebook-esque UI and strong feature set it should be one not to be missed, but sadly it's let down by the lack of user intuitiveness.