It’s a series that may not be as insanely popular as other Capcom franchises, but it’s certainly no less loved by its fans. The Ace Attorney series is about to get its fifth title – only in Japan thus far and no confirmed platform, no other details are available at present – but it seems like the developer is also interested in giving the series’ roots some love. Andriasang has reported that they’ve also announced Ace Attorney 123HD, an HD remake of the first three Ace Attorney games (back when they were called Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney) for iOS and other platforms.
The original has already been brought to iOS, but it was pretty much a straight port. Once this Turnabout HD is released (sorry, couldn’t resist) anyone who owns this port can upgrade to the HD version. For everyone else, they can download the first two episodes/turnabouts for free then unlock more via in-app purchases. The prospect of digging into HD renditions of some of my favorite Nintendo DS games (all conveniently located in one place no less) has me very, very excited.
There’s no confirmed release date yet, but Capcom says Ace Attorney 123HD should be available “shortly.” Gotta love that intentionally obscure information.
Remember how Spacetime StudiosannouncedDark Legends, and how we had zero information to go on except the title and some imagination? Well things are different now. Or rather, we know a bit more about it.
Dark Legends is set in a world ripe with conflict. The existence of vampires has only recently been acknowledged and the vast majority of humanity is rather… displeased upon hearing the news. This isn’t one of those “trying to find a peaceful coexistence” kind of scenarios; the non-vampire population is aiming to wipe out the blood-sucking “menace.” It’s kind of like True Blood, only if the majority of the human population was as quick to judge as that weirdo church/cult.
Players take control of a newly raised child of the night as they attempt to survive in this hostile new world and unravel its mysteries. And when I say “unravel its mysteries,” I mean exactly that. Dark Legends will be much more story-focused than Spacetime’s previous offerings, allowing players a more personal look into the narrative along with some Quick-Time Events during some cutscenes. That’s not to say that the combat hasn’t been tweaked as well. Fighting is definitely action-oriented, giving players some new abilities such as draining enemies (a given) and charge attacks.
Dark Legends is still missing a concrete release date, but it’s penned for the “first quarter of 2012.” So soon. Soon-ish, anyway. It’s also going to be available for Android, Google Chrome and (of course) iOS users right from the get-go.
The iOS Moffee experience seems to be a bit of a mixed bag, what with the somewhat lackluster response to their dice app and the fun-but-flawed nature of TheColossusAge. Well if early impressions are any indication, the bag is going to get decidedly full of more awesome once they release The Temple of Ogrosh.
In a nutshell, The Temple of Ogrash is meant to be a gamebook set in the Moffee universe. For those without any prior experience with the genre, try to think of it as a choose-your-own-adventure book with major RPG elements such as an inventory system and dice combat. At the moment there isn’t a whole lot of info to go on but I can reiterate some of the tidbits from the press release. The game will include five chapters, each at about 130 pages apiece, for a total of 650 possible pages of gamebooking. There will indeed be an inventory, as well as experience, sleep and hunger systems. Combat will still involve dice rolling like most gamebooks, but will also feature element attacks (fire, ice, poison, etc…) and a ton of possible weapon combinations (1920, plus unique items). Add to all of that the inclusion of multiple enemies, difficulty levels, several heroes and actual animations (ANIMATIONS, guys!) and this is looking like one heck of an awesome thing.
The Temple of Ogrosh is still a ways out. No pricing or release info has been made available yet, but judging by the checklist in the press release it’s roughly around the halfway mark. We’ll do our best to keep everyone up-to-date on this glorious-looking adventure.
2D action RPGs are always a popular genre. People (myself included) love the simplicity of fighting, looting, leveling, upgrading and crafting. BeerDeer wants to offer players more than that, hence the creation of Nyrthos. It’s still every bit all of those things I’ve mentioned, but it adds a new element to the mix: player influence. It’s not something as pedestrian as choosing from a dialog bog and seeing a good or bad event unfold, however.
In Nyrthos, the exploration of the world and availability of new areas is driven by the player base. One example given is that there might be a broken bridge that can be fixed once enough wood is gathered. If enough players decide to commit to the cause, the bridge will be repaired and the area beyond accessible to everyone. Similarly, players can found and manage their own village. They have a great deal of influence on the game world, and thanks to that the possibilities are practically endless.
Nyrthos will be entering open beta in the very near future (Q1, 2012), and anyone interested in taking a look can sign up on the official website. Pricing and release info are still non-existent at this point, which is to be expected, but we’ll do our best to keep everyone up-to-date.
Dungeon crawlers as a genre have certainly seen much success over the years, but that doesn’t mean that everyone loves them. It takes a certain kind of mentality to find joy in gathering tons of loot through repetitious fighting in order to fight stronger things (repetitiously) for better loot. Now assuming there was something else added to the proceedings to keep things from feeling less monotonous, something like that could draw in a bit more of a crowd. That is to say, draw in even more of a crowd. And what usually sells like crazy regardless of medium or platform? Humor.
With that in mind (I think), Ayopa Games and Drowning Monkeys have decided to unleash Dungeon Crawlers on an unsuspecting App Store. The game itself is a combination of more typical dungeon crawlers with multi-floored dungeons, loot and experience grinding and turn-based strategy RPGs. Players will control a team of four adventurers (an alchemist, priest, barbarian, and dwarven warrior) over the course of five chapters, each with their own distinct environments. They’ll also be going toe-to-toe with plenty of nasty monsters as they scrounge for stuff.
Dungeon Crawlers is slated for a January 26th release. A universal release, might I add. For a special “introductory price” of $1.99 no less.
With not one but two popular MMORPGs under their belt already, one would think that Spacetime Studios might be interested in taking a little break. Nope. DroidGamers have discovered that, rather than simply being content with resounding success they’ve decided it’s time to make yet another one. It’s planned for mobile devices, it’s going to be “… a bit of a departure from the formula that Pocket Legends established,” and its called Dark Legends.
I wish I had more info to share about it, but after checking the initial forum announcement, their official Facebook page and the completely unhelpful teaser site (I know, what else could I expect from a teaser site?) I’ve come up with zip. Well okay, that’s not entirely true. It’s fair to assume that it’ll probably have a somewhat darker theme than either of the developer’s previous titles. It’s also looking like Spacetime will be refining their Massively Multiplayer craft even further, and given the leap in quality from Pocket Legends to Star Legends it’s certainly something to be excited about.
148apps will no doubt be keeping an eye out for further developments. In the meantime, I’d advise being patient. Or possibly keeping busy with one (or both) of those other mobile MMOs while waiting. Patiently.
Egg Ball and BulkyPix are about to release a new platformer on the App Store. Please hold all sarcastic golf claps until I’ve finished. It’s not exactly an under-represented genre, but JAZZ: Trump’s Journey certainly looks to be a stand-out title.
It’s not just the traipsing through New Orleans circa the 1920′s. It’s also the awesomely stylized graphics, as well as the plot (inspired by the life of one Louis Armstrong no less) involving bringing jazz music to life for the first time in human history. Then there’s the way the game’s music will build, layer upon layer, as Trump begins recruiting musicians. There’s so much about this game that sounds awesome.
Of course, we’ll have to wait for it to come out before knowing if it lives up to expectations. It certainly looks like it will, though. Fortunately it won’t be an incredibly long wait. JAZZ: Trump’s Journey is scheduled for a universal January 19th release. No word yet on a price but I’m going to assume that whatever it is, it’ll be worth it.
Rob like-a-the point-and-click adventure games. He’s also rather fond of hyphens. Only one of those things is on SkyGoblin‘s agenda right now, but it’s the more important of the two by far.
The Journey Down is (surprise, surprise) an adventure game that looks like it would fit right in with any of those classic Lucasarts titles. Seriously, Bwana there looks like he’d fit right in with the likes of Guybrush Threepwood and Manny Calavera. In fact, the use of African masks as artistic inspiration (coupled with the use of some reggae and jazz music) isn’t all that different from Grim Fandango‘s incorporation of the Dia de los Muertos motif.
Episode one, which is slated for a Q1 2012 release, sees Bwana and his sidekick Kito getting torn from the drudgery of their down-and-out gas station and thrust into a web of intrigue and corruption. No word yet on pricing or a more solid date (or high resolution in-game footage), but The Journey Down definitely seems like a game worth looking out for.
I’m obviously excited about Legendary Heroes. It’s got me all in a tizzy, so to speak. But why is it so noteworthy? Read on for a better explanation than “it’s looking freaking awesome!”
First of all, it does indeed look awesome. It’s another iOS strategy game, which tend to fit the platform quite well. It features some pretty impressive-looking graphics. It takes the typical 2D castle defense genre and adds a third dimension, so there will be multiple paths to take in order to reach the enemy’s tower. Lots of power-ups can be used to bolster the team’s stats. And then there are the heroes.
Eight different heroes, each with their own abilities. Smaller units are still around, but it’s the direct control of the hero unit that really sets Legendary Heroes apart. Plus it sort of fits with the name. Anyway, it’s looking like an iOS mash-up of castle defense strategies, the fodder-pounding available in games like Dynasty Warriors and the inclusion of unique player-controlled hero classes that has been all the rage lately thanks to League of Legends.
Really now, how could someone not get excited about that combination? Oh but don’t just take my word for it. There’s a cleverly placed trailer sitting down there that should close the deal. Legendary Heroes will be out sometime in early 2012 and will be free-to-play.
In a move that’s not entirely unexpected, another popular Facebook title is being brought over to iOS devices. Bulkypix, in collaboration with Kobojo, are adapting PyramidVille for Apple devices. Dubbed PyramidVille Adventure this time around.
This is looking to be more than a mere straight port, however. While the developers have indeed carried the Ancient Egyptian city-building and citizen-gathering mechanics over, they’ve gone and added some new stuff as well. Players will be able to find special items that allow them to build special structures such as the Great Sphinx, as well as take part in a new collection of mini-games that can actually reduce the amount of real-time waiting required for various actions. And, of course, the entire interface has been redesigned for iOS with touch controls and the like.
Those looking to become the next Ramses (or Cleopatra!) will still have to wait a bit before they can experience the 6 million player strong Facebook phenomena on the go. PyramidVille Adventure isn’t set to come out for another month or so, towards the tail end of January. It’ll be free-to-play, and universal, so once it does come out there won’t be much of a reason to avoid it. Aside from the obvious ones like “free time” and “loved ones” anyway.
Flight simulators have been extremely popular within certain circles, especially the PC crowd. Hundreds of thousands of logged flight time, tons of mods, even elaborate homemade rigs… It’s one of those things that’s just insanely popular among a specific set of people.
With that rabid fanbase in mind, TAS Games is preparing to release Flight Unlimited – a less expansive but no less impressive single-aircraft simulation. Players can freely explore the immense city and parts of the surrounding suburbs in their adorable little Cesna. Exploration is the key element here, as there don’t seem to be any official tasks or missions to complete. It’s just the player, the plane, and a city full of things to buzz, land on and crash into. And it sure looks pretty.
Flight Unlimited is available on the App Store now for $2.99. iPhone 3GS users and below need not apply. It’s currently only planned for the iPad (1 and 2) and the iPhone 4 (and 4S).
To be fair, there are a fair number of video editing apps available for the iPhone right now. I suppose it’s because the portable nature of iDevices makes them perfect for amateur film folk. Cinefy is another such app meant for creating video clips, sure, but it appears to be much more extensive than most of the current offerings.
For one thing, it has a pretty sleek and accessible-looking interface: the individual tracks are easy to distinguish from one another thanks to some vivid color-coding. But it’s not just about the editing. Cinefy also offers what, to my knowledge, is a first for iOS video apps. It features “one click licensing,” which gives users access to a large selection of copyright-cleared tunes (provided by Friendly Music). A feature meant to streamline the process of video production, no doubt, and it seems like it’ll do just that. Once a video has been finished, it can be exported to Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo.
There’s no official pricing and release info available yet, but interested cinematic auteurs can head on over to the website to try and get a spot in the beta. And if anyone reading this gets in, please feel free to tell us about it!
Everyone does it. They’re sitting there listening to music, doing whatever else while the sweet melodies relax or empower them, and then they get The Urge. Suddenly, it becomes extremely important to let other people know what they’re listening to. I can’t even begin to explain this phenomena but it’s a real thing and it happens all the time. Thanks to James Shaw, the 16 year-old app wiz, the process will be getting even more streamlined.
MusicTweet is an app designed to do just that: tweet music. When a user starts up the app, it will automatically find the song and album information on what they’re currently listening to. When the tracks change, it’ll track down the info for the new one, too. From there it’s simply a matter of tapping the “Tweet” button. The app will automatically add the title, artist and other miscellaneous bits. Tracks can be changed in-app, along with the volume, so there’s little reason for tweet-happy music lovers to not keep it running all the time.
MusicTweet is available on the App Store now for $0.99.
When most people see or hear the name Digital Tales, they most likely associate it with Ducati Challenge for iOS. That, or they can click those links to see what I’m talking about because they also might be totally lost at this point. Regardless, there’s going to be a new iPhone/iPad game for folks to think about when their name comes up: Battleloot Adventure.
Aside from just being an awesome name to begin with, it’s looking like a pretty awesome game to boot. Players get to build and manage their own band of fantasy archetypes as they wander throughout “Kameloot” (ha!) and the surrounding countryside. Each adventurer has their own abilities and gain experience individually. Similarly, lots of gear can be found/earned and thrown on them for various bonuses. But while I’m admittedly a sucker for customization options (party, character, skill or otherwise) and I’m really digging the stylish cartoon visuals, I’m really intrigued by the combat system which looks like a hybrid of traditional turn-based RPG trappings and reflex-based arcade action. Tapping characters and enemies to select and attack respectively is relatively standard, but I’m curious to see how the more “twitchy” actions like assists (tap a second character while attacking) and blocking (tap the targeted character during an enemy’s attack) pan out.
There don’t seem to be any specifics regarding price just yet, but Battleloot Adventure is set to release on the App Store in February. It’s a few months off, but I’m certainly looking forward to it.
Everyone’s gaga for catching and training monsters. It’s a shockingly popular genre, which makes its overall lack of representation on the App Store all the more odd. That’s not so say that no one’s ever tried, but there just aren’t that many choices at the moment. Greyhound Games, with help from ZigZaGame, is looking to do their part by releasing Dragon Island.
The overall concept of Dragon Island is as expected: capture monsters, level-up monsters, evolve and combine monsters to create new monsters and fight other monsters with said monsters. What sets it apart from the scant few other games in the genre on iOS is the use of actual time instead of energy or mana, setting a specific lineup for monsters (think “batting order”), a sprawling map full of places to explore and dungeons. The dungeons are of particular note because they’re not only randomly-generated, but can also contain special monsters, treasures, their own towns and even other dungeons.
Currently the game is about 75% complete (according to the developer), and they’re looking to the community to take it well beyond the 100% mark. They’ve set up a Kickstarter page to raise funds so that they can include more of, well, everything. More monsters, more dungeons, more items and more game in general.
What’s there is already looking really good (placeholder graphics notwithstanding). I’m particularly fond of the monster illustrations. And the thought of Roguelike dungeons in a monster-collecting rpg has me salivating something fierce. If anyone echoes my sentiment, then I urge them to look into Dragon Island. Don’t forget to take a gander at the handful of monster images (20+ out of 200) in the gallery below, either. Also, “LOL” at Unhappy Bird.
Cave has released a number of shooters on the App Store, and virtually all of them have been very well-received. In the interest of preserving that tradition, they’ve just announced an iOS port of Bug Princess (also known as Mushihimesama). I’m hoping that I have all my facts straight, but bear with me here.
Mushihimesama was a big hit in Japanese arcades when it was released in 2004. Thanks in no small part to its “Manic” and “Ultra” modes, I’m sure. After all that success, Cave released a sequel – Mushihimesama Futari – in 2006, followed by a 2010 spin-off most iOS users should be familiar with at this point: Mushihimesama Bug Panic. Still with me? Good.
So, Cave is getting ready to release the original vertical-scrolling shooter Mushihimesama, now under the name Bug Princess on the App Store for our enjoyment. My head hurts a little now… Anyway, the original arcade title that led to the creation and release of Mushihimesama Bug Panic is headed our way. According to the developer, it’s going to be compatible with the iPhone4, 3GS, iPod Touch 3rd Gen and up, the iPad and iPad2, and will require OS 4.2 or higher.
There’s no specific release info yet aside from “winter 2011,” but there isn’t a whole lot of 2011 left so it won’t be too long a wait. As for pricing… Well, that’s still unannounced, but it’s a Cave game so I’d imagine it’ll range from $5 to $10 or so. Best get those App Store funds ready.
Everyone loves a good iOS port, right? It seems like App Store shoppers are always clamoring to have versions of their favorite PC and console games on their phones, pads and pods. I know I’m certainly no exception. Enter the original Inertia: a nifty gravity-manipulating platformer that took home the SMU Guildhall grand prize for non-commercial games back in February. The title’s creators have since joined Red Fly Studio, and will be bringing a “console gaming experience” spiritual successor of sorts to iOS and Android devices shortly.
Inertia: Escape Velocity requires players to use their wits, as well as plenty of finesse, in order to navigate each level successfully. Bouncing, gliding and floating will be essential for scooping up scrap (to repair a damaged ship, naturally) which will grant access to even more levels. Touch controls are the standard, but there’s also an option to use accelerometer to make things a bit more intense. Of course, players can opt for even more intensity (that’s “Intense x 2″ for anyone doing the math) by jumping into the “Inferno” versions of each stage.
Inertia: Escape Velocity is set to release next month, December 1st, for $1.99 (iPhone/iPod) and $2.99 (iPad). Keep a sharp eye.
It’s one thing for slimy, slobbering aliens to go around stealing livestock. It’s something else entirely when they start pilfering cute little kitties. That’s crossing a line. On the other side of that line is a vengeance-fueled engine of mayhem and destruction hell-bent on recovering his lost friend while making his antagonizers wish they were never born. Or spawned. Or whatever the heck aliens do to reproduce. And his name is Dum Dum.
Gamelion has recently announced Monster Shooter, a soon to be released twin-stick shooter. Players will blast their way through all sorts of alien scum on three distinct worlds, featuring a humorous story and lots and lots of shooting. If they grow tired of the plot or structured level progression, there’s also a Survival Mode to put their skills to the test. And yes, the developers have mentioned that they’re already working on additional content which will be released as free updates in the future.
There’s no exact date for Monster Shooter‘s release just yet, but it should be out sometime this month. “… Within the next few weeks,” is the best I’ve got at the moment. Still, it looks funny and sounds entertaining. That combined with a non-existent price (read: it’s going to be free) makes it absolutely worth an inquisitive glance or two. Once it finally gets here, of course.
Peanuts has got to be one of, if not the, most recognizable American cartoon strips in history. Not just the comic, either. Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown is one of those holiday classics that just has to be seen. It’s a staple of every Santa-loving child’s holiday. Suffice it to say, Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of those not-quite troublemakers are a huge part of American culture.
They’ve been around a long time. Long enough, in fact, to have spawned more than a couple video game iterations. Now it’s time for the unnaturally bald man-child and his friends to try their luck on iOS with Snoopy’s Street Fair. I’ll admit I was somewhat surprised and confused by the odd choice of gameplay style at first, but after only a few seconds of that trailer down there I’ve completely changed my tune. I’m legitimately excited for this game.
Peanuts and a freemium “city” building game… Who in their right mind would have ever thought that would work? Players will help Charlie Brown and friends (21 characters in all) set up a street fair in the neighborhood, with all manner of stalls and other street fair things. Notable characters such as Linus, Lucy and more can also be recruited to run the kiosks and attractions. Of course, these all earn money that can be used to acquire better stuff, etc…
An interesting spin to the whole idea is Snoopy himself. The mischievous beagle will wander the neighborhood and cause all manner of light-hearted trouble. Depending on his current costume (such as the Beagle Scout) he’ll interact with the environment in various ways, and each of the three outfits unlocks a unique themed minigame.
There are also a bunch of collectibles to keep players doing what they do best while steadily earning income to build more structures to earn more income and so on. With over two-dozen trading cards and 45 original cartoon strips, well it’s got plenty of carrots to dangle. And through it all, the classic Peanuts style shines through with artwork faithful to Charles M. Schulz’s illustrations and “official voice talent.” Official voice talent (!).
Snoopy’s Street Fair will be setting up shop in the App Store November 17th. I’m calling it right now: unless there’s hypothetically some kind of insane bug (which I doubt), this game is going to do very, very well. Because everyone loves Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts troupe.
PopCap is one of those companies that just keeps churning out quality game nuggets by the truckload. Thanks to their innovative new 4th & Battery studio, the developer has had even more of a chance to spread their wings. Their first release, Unpleasant Horse, was a great stride into the mini-game category of iOS, while still striving to succeed at being a completely free title.
Last week, PopCap was eager to proclaim the release of their newest free offering: Candy Train. After seeing a forgettable flash debut way back in 2003, the game has been redesigned to take advantages of all of the great features that iOS gamers have come to know and love.
The backstory of this game’s development has it that an aspiring developer working in another branch of the company decided to prove their moxie and design a whole new iOS game around this long-lost flash gem. After toiling away on the game in her free time, investing many hours outside of the office, she eventually had a finished product to show to the powers that be within Popcap.
Leadership within the company was so impressed with the level of detail and polish in the game that they determined that it was worth sharing with the general public, and thus Candy Train was re-born. Oh, and what ever became of that budding developer that dreamed of one day joining the legions developing classics at Popcap? She has now successfully transitioned into a full-time role as a game programmer.
These are the kinds of stories that you just love to hear, from a developer that can seeming do no wrong. So why not show Sophia some love and give the game a download? It isn’t like a free game is going to break the bank, after all!
In a busy daily life that is made up of a standard nine to five, time spent with family and loved ones, and the ever looming necessity of sleep, it becomes crucial for one to have something to help them feel fulfilled. For many, the answer to this basic human need is a hobby. But what happens if in your free time you enjoy backwards unicycle riding while playing the harmonica? I am going to go out on a limb and say that most likely you are not going to have any friends that share that similar passion.
This is why the app Groupie was created. You can research any random activity or topic you could possibly imagine, and most likely there is a group dedicated to it. Who knows, maybe it will introduce you to the the backwards unicycling tuba player of your dreams? Yeah, that one may be a bit of a long shot, but you will never know unless you give it a try!
I met Tarikh of Uncommon Projects a couple of weeks ago and got a preview of Steps, a cool new project designed to help users publish instructions or directions from their iPhone to the web. Uncommon Projects, based in Brooklyn, is a hardware and software design firm that has done projects like a cool series of photo bikes for Yahoo. One of the sample Steps they’ve put together online is a great introduction to the service’s potential.
List of Created Stpes
At the moment, creating Steps requires the Steps iPhone application. Users start projects and add steps, with a wide variety of different types of information to include. Images and text are the two most important, but Steps also gives users the opportunity to add directional arrows that translucently sit on top of the photos. Location can also be added via GPS and seen on an included map. This allows for breadcrumb navigation using just a map in case pictures or text aren’t necessary.
The application also allows you to preview the steps before uploading them to the web. Once shared, the app can send the steps out in a tweet or an email.
The Steps app makes it incredibly simple to create instructions and the web app that Uncommon Projects has created is a perfect companion. The iPhone view feels just like the application itself, allowing users to look at maps or see the text and pictures along with every step. Viewing the Steps site from a desktop provides an equally informative view.
Viewing Steps' Directions Online
A Lesson in Simplicity
Steps is just the kind of application I love. It’s easy to use, simple, and beautifully designed. When the app is released, it’ll make it easier for everyone, be they chefs sharing recipes or relatives giving directions to their homes, to make easy to understand walkthroughs.
You may remember a few months back now that Apple unveiled a new system in which it used a web-based interface to show song information for an individual iTunes URL, before you were physically transferred to the actual iTunes store itself. The move came in sync with the iTunes store re-design which saw the store become more streamlined overall, with a cleaner, crisper interface. Until now, these new web-based ‘Preview‘ pages have lay dormant, offering no real purpose other than to provide necessary links to albums and individual tracks on the iTunes store.
Today, Apple has reportedly enabled studio 30 second previews of all tracks in it’s current iTunes catalog to work in-browser. Mac Rumors are reporting via GigaOM that these previews are encoded in 44.1 KHz AAC format at 300+ kbps, and playback is issued via QuickTime.
The move falls in line with Apple’s recent acquisition of the online music streaming service Lala, which could see Apple move it’s entire current catalog online, possibly offering all-you-can-eat subscription based plans in the future.
1Password, the anticipated iPhone version of the popular Mac OS secure password manager, has been released to the App Store for free. The developer, Agile Web Solutions, says it will be free for an unspecified introductory period. After a quick look, it’s pretty impressive. Grab it now! We’ll be doing a full review, including how well the sync works soon.