Posts Tagged Puzzle Quest
Being asked to sum up the past five years of the App Store, on a personal level, is tough. Partly, because I have the memory of a goldfish, but also because so much has happened in those few years. How do you highlight what’s so great about a device and service that you can’t imagine being without? My iPhone and the App Store, by proxy, has been immensely important to me in this time. It’s given me so much information, enjoyment and even been a great outlet in times of need. Here’s a feeble attempt at trying to sum up how vital it’s all been for me.
Launch day: Despite the goldfish analogy, I do remember when the App Store first launched. I’d had an iPhone for a couple of months previously and had dabbled in jailbreaking, but didn’t feel too comfortable with it. The day the App Store started was genuinely exciting stuff. It’s hard to believe, for those newer to the Store, but it was possible to browse from start to finish, thanks to there being a mere 500 apps available. I did that, regularly, until it got to a point where there were just too many titles to look at. Like with any launch day event, these apps didn’t show off everything the technology could do, but they did offer a glimpse of a thrilling future.
Flight Control: Excluding a dabble with the no longer with us, Bejeweled 2, Flight Control was my first great iOS love. It showed me how great the touch controls of the iPhone could be, and how quickly one could gain satisfaction from a phone game. My past experiences with mobile gaming had been fun, but lacking that certain something that made me think it could rival handheld consoles. Flight Control changed that, for me, and I loved spending ages battling to improve my high score. Not that I was any good at it, though!
Exploration: I like apps that enhance my life, and I’ve used many in the past. Star Chart sticks in my mind, however, thanks to it enabling me to learn more about an area. While at the summit of an ancient ridge, Cefn Bryn, I could load up Star Chart and work out exactly what stars were above me and where. It was pretty magical.
A career path: It’s a pretty significant one, but if it wasn’t for the App Store, I wouldn’t be writing this. In fact, I’m not entirely sure what I’d be doing, given throughout my freelance career thus far, the App Store and iOS have played a very big role. It’s changed my life for the better. It’s been nearly three years since I wrote my first review for 148apps, Carnivores: Dinosaur Hunter, and I’m immensely grateful for how far I, and the site, have come.
The indie uprising: I always passively appreciated the efforts of indie developers, before the advent of the App Store, but my love for them has definitely grown. Perhaps more excitingly, I feel enabled to give it a go myself at some point. While I haven’t yet found the time spare to really pursue it, Xcode, Stencyl and Gamesalad are waiting for me, reminding me that the era of the bedroom coder has returned. That’s got to be a good thing for creativity, right?
Beloved Apps and Missed Titles
Favorites: I’ve struggled to narrow the list down. Really struggled. The memories of one Saturday morning avidly playing Game Dev Story in bed, before realising it’s practically lunchtime are particularly strong. Much the same as my hundreds of hours spent with Fairway Solitaire are fond, if tarnished by the time it inexplicably lost all my data and progress. Or how about the time I demonstrated the power of the iPad to my mother with the double whammy of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and XCOM: Enemy Unknown? The former being one of my favorite games of all time.
Out of them all, though, a select bunch are used nearly every day. I take photos each day to track my life and have some fond memories to look back on, so Instagram is a must have for me. I like to back up such things, as well as my social networking sharing, so Momento is always at the forefront of my recently used apps. As a writer, iA Writer completes the selection, thanks to its cloud syncing ensuring I can always write up a quick idea, no matter where I am. New Star Soccer remains the key game that I regularly find myself returning to, living my fantasy as a world class soccer player.
Apps I miss: There are a couple of apps I miss, though. Puzzle Quest being one such title, given my love of the Match-3 genre and the fact I’ve played it to death on all other formats. Similarly, I adored Big Blue Bubble’s use of the Fighting Fantasy license, although at least Tin Man Games is doing a brilliant job of taking over that mantle.
It’s been a fun five years, and given how far the App Store has come in that time, I’m excited to see what the next five years will bring. It’s looking like a pretty rosy future to me!
Yes, here we are, back from another long look at the price drops in the App Store, braving them again for your downloading pleasure and time saving benefit. Here’s what we have for you today:
ChuChu Rocket! HD – Was $4.99, now $0.99
This Sega classic rated 4 stars in our review, which said, “this is still ChuChu Rocket, and the game holds up well to this day. I had some great times reliving this game on my iPhone and iPad, and it’s great to see the game brought back for a new generation of gamers and for those who enjoyed the game back in its heyday to be able to relive it.”
Puzzle Quest Chapter 1 - Was $1.99, now FREE
The first of the gaming mashup sensation is now free on the App Store. Taking the zen of match-three with the addictiveness of a RPG, this is the game that started it all.
Parodise – Was $0.99, now FREE
Our reviewer had this to say, “the gameplay is a whole lot of fun, and rewards a player for learning the way in which different items react and for consequently reacting quickly to these items themselves. I will add that the written content may not be suited to the very youngest members of the family, but they probably wouldn’t take the time to read it anyway.”
A big announcement kicking off the day today, as Firemint announced that they have acquired fellow Aussie developer Infinite Interactive. The agreement means that Firemint will now be the exclusive publisher of all Infinite Interactive games, which means they’ll need more kangaroo pouches in which to stuff all the money they’re about to make.
“I’m incredibly pleased to welcome Steve (Fawkner, founder of Infinite Interactive) and his team to Firemint,” said Firemint founder Rob Murray. “Steve is an outstanding game designer and our two studios evolved very similar philosophies of developing addictive, fun and polished original games. By bringing our studios’ talents together, we will be able to create even more awesome games – and more of them.”
Fawkner added, “Firemint has had huge success designing, developing and publishing great original games. By joining forces, we now have a way to further develop some of the exciting new concepts we’ve been working on. This new position really frees me up to focus on game design and I can’t wait to get stuck into it!”
Infinite Interactive is the studio behind the extremely popular Puzzle Quest franchise, while Firemint is best known for games like Flight Control and Real Racing 2. With the two studios set to work together it likely means that none of us will ever get anything done ever again, so we may as well just all quit our jobs now and wait for the companies’ first joint-venture game. Will their combined power be enough to knock the traditional powerhouses from their perch atop the App Store? It’s impossible to know right now but we wouldn’t be surprised if whatever they come up with makes some major waves in the realm of iOS and beyond. This is truly a powerhouse pairing, and one with a whole lot of promise.
In the event some beloved friend or family member gives you the gift of an iTunes gift card Namco has some good ideas on how to spend it as the company is offering three brand-new, high-profile games just in time for the holidays. And even if you don’t have free money coming your way then go ahead and buy them anyway, because they all look pretty great.
First up is the newly-released Puzzle Quest 2, which takes the same addictive gameplay as the original and gets rid of most of the balancing issues and the annoying AI cheating. Yeah, the developers deny to this day that the game cheated, but considering how much more fair matches in Puzzle Quest 2 are when compared to the original, we’re pretty sure they did something. The game’s been available on other outlets such as Xbox Live and Nintendo DS for a little while now, but we’re very happy to see it finally come to iOS.
Also currently available is Letter Labyrinth, which takes the traditional jumbled-letter word game and throws in a healthy dose of Pac-Man. The game also features a Calculation mode where you can work with numbers and equations rather than letters, and if Pac-Man eating math equations doesn’t start raising test scores then nothing will.
Last but not least is the all-new Bit.Trip Beat Blitz, which brings the addicting and supremely challenging Bit.Trip gameplay with some fun new wrinkles. The game features some brand new power-ups, and is free to download. Of course, you’ll have to upgrade to get access to all the levels and content, but by that time you’ll be so hooked it won’t even matter.
So we give thanks to Namco for dropping some serious holiday joy on all of us with a bunch of awesome new games. I will personally be enjoying all these titles while waiting for flights and sitting on planes as I head to and from my annual pilgrimage home. I just hope I don’t get so frustrated with Bit.Trip that I end up hurling my iPod out of a plane at 30,000 feet.
Released: 2010-12-09 :: Category: Games
Released: 2010-11-10 :: Category: Games