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Hands-On with ZombieSmash's Multiplayer Update

Posted by Carter Dotson on August 9th, 2011

ZombieSmash is getting its second major content expansion this Thursday. Multiplayer is coming to this zombie-flinging castle defense game, and we have early hands-on impressions of the game's new update.

The multiplayer mode, played online through Game Center, pits two players on their own house defense points, trying to keep their house from being overrun. The two players don't interact directly with each other, but both players will have to fight the same waves of zombies on their own screens.

Powerups come up that allow players to send a large zombie that must be killed by special weapons directly to their opponent. Thus, the strategy becomes in using the special items (which aren't necessarily the same for each player) carefully, so if any big zombies show up, they can be taken out. However, the regular zombies get stronger as the game goes on, so the longer a game goes, the more likely it will be that regular zombies will be the loser's downfall, not necessarily the big zombies. The game randomly selects maps from both the original house and Camp Nowhere scenario released earlier this year, as well as having levels where the zombies all come from one side, as well as the notorious two-sided zombie assault levels.

The multiplayer is played via Game Center matchmaking, and doesn't appear to suffer from any undue lag or other issues, so the play experience is smooth. Note that games can only be played between identical versions of the game, so the iPad version can't play someone on the iPhone version of the game. This is a combination of both Game Center restrictions and because the mechanics of the two versions of the game are different to accommodate the differing screen sizes. The game supports optional voice chat between players; a headset is recommended if not required. The update will be available this Thursday, and will be free for both iPhone/iPod touch and iPad versions of the game.


OSM Match Brings Gyroscopic Target Shooting with Game Center Multiplayer to the App Store

Posted by Carter Dotson on August 3rd, 2011
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

OSM Match is a free to play target shooting game for iOS devices with gyroscopes. In the game's single player mode, the player must try to take down as many discs being shot out without letting three discs go undestroyed. The game uses gyroscopic controls for aiming, so standing up and moving around with the iPhone/iPod touch is the best way to play the game. The player gets silver coins for succeeding, which can be spent on additional ammo and weapon upgrades. The game supports online multiplayer for up to four players (two players over 3G), and players can use special abilities to make it more difficult for opponents to hit the targets. Gold coins can be earned or purchased to help buy these abilities as well as items that can assist the player on their way to victory. The game includes several modes in multiplayer, all of which can be unlocked in the game's single player mode via an in-app purchase. OSM Match is available as a free download from the App Store.

Street Fighter IV Volt Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Carter Dotson on July 1st, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: STATIC SHOCK
Street Fighter IV Volt is a new version of Capcom's latest entry in the legendary Street Fighter IV franchise, featuring 3 new characters and online play.
Read The Full Review »

Let's Jump Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Carter Dotson on June 15th, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: GET UP!
Let's Jump is an endless ascension platformer with both single and multiplayer modes.
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The Portable Podcast, Episode 89

Posted by Carter Dotson on June 14th, 2011

Round and round and round and roundtable!

On This Episode:

  • Carter and several iOS developers get together to discuss iOS5 and what the new features mean for the future of development on iOS.

  • Who We Are:

  • Host: Carter Dotson
  • Guest: Colin Walsh, Celsius Game Studios
  • Guest: Gavin Bowman, Retro Dreamer
  • Guest: Peter Babiy, Strapped to a Meteor Studios
  • Contact The Show: Email | Twitter

    Music:

  • "Beatnes7 (Theme to The Portable Podcast)" by The Eternal - Download on iTunes here:


  • "Nanocarp" by The Eternal

  • How to Listen:

  • Click Here to Subscribe in iTunes:
  • Click Here to Subscribe via RSS.

  • Listen on WRGT Radio every Friday at 4pm Central
  • Listen Here: [powerpress]
  • Apps Mentioned in this Episode:



    The Portable Podcast, Episode 88

    Posted by Carter Dotson on June 7th, 2011

    With our heads in the clouds...

    On This Episode:

  • Carter and guest co-host Brett Nolan discuss Apple's WWDC conference, particularly the iOS 5 and iCloud announcements. They discuss how the features connect in particular to games, especially game progress and cloud-based saving possibilities in iOS 5 with iCloud.
  • Who We Are:

  • Host: Carter Dotson
  • Guest: Brett Nolan, AppAddict.net

  • Contact The Show: Email | Twitter

    Music:

  • "Beatnes7 (Theme to The Portable Podcast)" by The Eternal - Download on iTunes here:


  • "Nanocarp" by The Eternal

  • How to Listen:

  • Click Here to Subscribe in iTunes:
  • Click Here to Subscribe via RSS.

  • Listen on WRGT Radio every Friday at 4pm Central
  • Listen Here: [powerpress]
  • Huge Multiplayer Updates and New Game Releases

    Posted by Kevin Stout on May 19th, 2011

    Today is a day of major updates and new releases. Three of the major updates deal with multiplayer functionality and features. Need for Speed Hot Pursuit updated yesterday with its Autolog feature. According to the Need for Speed blog,

    Through Autolog, you’ll be able to track your career progress, Personal Best times and how they compare against your friends, check out all your captured game photos, brag about your latest accomplishments, and jump directly into challenges recommended by Autolog’s comparison engine based on your friends' gameplay.


    Popular board game ported to iOS, Carcassonne, updated to allow online multiplayer through Game Center. Carcassonne also added more achievements, a score sharing option, and made overall improvements to the app itself.

    The update I’m the most excited about is the massive Infinity Blade update. The Chair Entertainment Group has added the “Arena” to Infinity Blade, allowing multiplayer challenges with friends through Game Center. In addition, the game now has a survival mode, new items, and new achievements.

    If these major updates aren’t enough to overwhelm those serious gamers out there, a slew of interesting games have been released.

    Square Enix and Chaos Ring fans will jump for joy because a new Chaos Rings game has been released today, Chaos Rings Omega. The new game uses new characters and a new storyline that is said to span 10,000 years!


    Casey’s Contrapations involve creating Rube Goldberg-ish machines so that Casey can get his toys back. Friends can share the puzzle solutions with each other over Game Center and can even create their own contraptions for their friends to solve! It's also an Editor's Choice recipient on 148Apps!

    Bumpy Road is an interesting game where the player guides a moving car by modifying its surrounding environment (like the ground). The game looks great for kids but I’ll probably be caught playing it shortly!

    TNA Wrestling iMPACT is a professional wrestling game, obviously. It includes wrestlers such as Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair, has a wrestler creation mode, career mode, and multiplayer through Game Center.

    iQuarterback 2 is a target practice game football game. The player controls are quarterback trying to hit various moving targets in different environments (apparently some as weird as an air hockey table). Game Center provides high scores and achievements.

    Candy Train is an old PopCap game finally ported to iOS. The player controls a train while attempting to fix hilarious messed up tracks to reach pieces of candy. While it looks like another great for kids, this seems like a fast-paced game and fun for adults as well.

    Orions 2: The Deckmasters is a sequel to original fantasy card game Orions: Legend of wizards. The new game includes more cards and characters and seems to have a ton of visually stimulating animations for attacks.

    And finally, Storm in a Teacup is a puzzle platformer where the character flies across various levels in a magical teacup. Despite the ridiculous premise and name, it looks like a cute and well-made game.

    So pick a new game, update the older ones, and have great time playing with friends online today!

    Super Stickman Golf Gets Updated With Online Game Center Multiplayer

    Posted by Carter Dotson on April 13th, 2011

    Super Stickman Golf (formerly Super Stick Golf) has gotten a major update. 6 challenging new courses have been added to the game, bringing the total up to 30. As well, you now have the ability to pay to unlock all features, if you'd rather pay than play the game to unlock them. However, these new courses and in-app purchases aren't just it for the new content, as online multiplayer, briefly discussed when developer Noodlecake Games was on The Portable Podcast, has been added to the game.

    The multiplayer mode supports 2-4 people either locally through wifi or Bluetooth, and online with matchmaking through Game Center. The game plays a bit different here - instead of competing for the lowest score, your goal is to get your ball in the hole as quickly as possible. This changes the dynamics of the game, as you need to find the quickest path to the ball, not the one with the fewest strokes, necessarily. You get points based on your finishing position, and your goal is to have the most points at the end of the 9-hole course. Powerups are still in play - you get a total of 10 that you can use during each course, and you can use any unlocked powerups you have, instead of having to choose which ones you specifically want to use at the beginning of the course. This whole setup leads to great moments of joy when you'll just barely manage to beat out your opponent, and those moments of agony when they do the same to you. And there's plenty of variety, too, as all 29 courses are playable online. It is incredibly addictive, and it provides a different enough experience that even if you've played the game a lot already, this really starts to mix it up.

    If you haven't played the full version, then you'll be glad to know that there's now a free version of the game that's available. It comes with 3 all-new courses exclusive to this version of the game, as well as online Game Center multiplayer for those 3 courses. It's a great way to get people into the game, and is worth downloading even for people who own the full version. Both Super Stickman Golf Free and the update for the full version, which is a free update, are available on the App Store right now as universal apps.


    TeamLava Announces Next Entry in "Story" Franchise, Fashion Story

    Posted by Carter Dotson on March 30th, 2011

    TeamLava has set out on a goal - to turn every possible industry into a freemium game. From restaurants to bakeries to nightclubs to treasure hunting, almost everything is fair game for TeamLava. Next up for them is Fashion Story, another universal freemium "virtual world RPG experience" that has you in charge of your own boutique. You get to stock and sell clothing and other apparel in your own boutique, with the ability to unlock designer brands that you can sell to increase business, and the ability to customize your boutique with a variety of layouts and decorations. As well, you can customize your own avatar to make yourself look all fashionable and trendy, because if you're going to run a fashionable and trendy boutique, you better be fashionable and trendy yourself. And of course, there's social networking features, so you can meet other players of the game and visit their shops.

    Fashion Story may not be exactly appealing to core gamers like myself, but who knows - TeamLava is turning everything else into a story. Maybe Spy Agency Story is coming up next. I sure wouldn't mind running one of those, especially if I could wear an eyepatch and give people awesome codenames and send them out on missions. It could happen! Until then, you'll just have to enjoy the slightly less cutthroat world of the fashion industry. Fashion Story is coming soon to the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

    Mariachi Hero Review

    iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
    By Jennifer Allen on March 1st, 2011
    Our rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar :: COULD DO BETTER
    The name and concept is cool but there needs to be more content to Mariachi Hero.
    Read The Full Review »

    The Blocks Cometh Review

    + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
    By Carter Dotson on February 22nd, 2011
    Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: FRUSTRATION COMETH
    The Blocks Cometh, an official port of the Flash game, is an ascension platform that has you trying to navigate stacks of blocks that keep falling from the sky.
    Read The Full Review »

    Battleheart Review

    + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
    By Jennifer Allen on February 2nd, 2011
    Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: CHARMING
    Battleheart is a wonderfully charming RPG that could just do with a little more depth
    Read The Full Review »

    Pixel Fighters Review

    iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
    By Jennifer Allen on February 1st, 2011
    Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: ALMOST GREAT
    Pixel Fighters offers tons of potential but it's not as compelling as it sounds. At least not yet.
    Read The Full Review »

    Avenging Spirit Review

    + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
    By Jennifer Allen on December 22nd, 2010
    Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: FUN
    Retro side-scrolling platforming shoot em up fun awaits.
    Read The Full Review »

    Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror Review

    + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
    By Jennifer Allen on December 17th, 2010
    Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: EXCELLENT
    Point and click adventuring that's fantastic fun
    Read The Full Review »