Well, the Rage 2 trailer came out. It's pretty interesting, if you're in to post apocalyptic destruction and games that look an awful lot like Borderlands. But, y'know, shinier. But since that sort of non-portable game really isn't our bag here at 148Apps, we thought it'd make sense to make a list of games that are a bit like Rage 2 that we actually do care about.
One of them was a pretty easy choice. Can you guess which one it was? Even if you can't, make sure you give the list a read, and if you think we've missed something out, let us know in the comments at the bottom of the article. Or if you just want to tell us we've wasted our time and should be doing better. Say something.
Games like ARK: Survival Evolved and Conan Exiles have taken the world of gaming by storm. The market is now flooded with hardcore survival games that send players off into the game's world with nothing but maybe the clothes on their back.
Never one to miss out on a good trend, the mobile industry has embraced survival games whole-heartedly. There are quite a few good ones on iOS in fact. We're here today to do you the service of highlighting the best of the best.
How do you know what apps are worth your time and money? Just look to the review team at 148Apps. We sort through the chaos and find the apps you're looking for. The ones we love become Editor’s Choice, standing out above the many good apps and games with something just a little bit more to offer. Take a look at what we've been up to this week, and find even more in our Reviews Archive.
Monsters aren’t what makes horror movies scary. It’s the idea of the monster that truly frightens us. The shrouded inhuman figure we can barely make out forces us to fill in the terrifying details with our own imagination. That’s why whenever the monster fully arrives, it just looks silly and the fear disappears. What makes Dark Echo one of the tensest, most ingenious horror games on the App Store is that it’s all about not seeing the monster. Based on the development team’s Ludum Dare game You Must Escape, Dark Echo puts players in the poor shoes of some anonymous victim stuck in a pitch black hallway. Virtually blind, the only way to move around is to rely on your other senses, particularly hearing. The game represents this Daredevil-style echolocation by showing sound waves as white lines bouncing around the black screen. Beyond just being a striking visual effect, this gives players enough information they need to progress while also leaving them incredibly vulnerable. --Jordan Minor
It’s a good sign when finishing a game causes me to audibly yell “Nooo, don’t finish there!” at my iPad. It’s also a sign that the first episode of The Detail could perhaps do with being a little longer. It offers just enough to really grab your attention, but its premium price tag doesn’t quite match up with the quantity offered here. The App Store description suggests a mixture of The Walking Dead with the grim realism of The Wire. That’s about right, too. The Detail is a pretty dark game, even this early on, but it hooks you in fast. Following two very different characters – a grizzled and cynical veteran detective and a reformed criminal with a family – it’s not long at all before you’re drawn into the storyline. Action is much like other adventure games with you tapping on hotspots to interact with them in some way. Within a few minutes, you’re inspecting a body, trying to glean clues as to what’s unfolding. You can also talk to people, ask them questions, and adjust your tone accordingly. --Jennifer Allen
The Witcher Battle Arena is a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) for people who have never played one before. It lacks the depth of most of the rest of the genre, as well as a few other features that would beguile you. Instead, it’s a bit too simple to really recommend, although I guess it works as a gateway to superior offerings. Unlike other MOBAs, each match is very straightforward with little opportunity for tactical play. Games are 3-vs-3, with teams having to capture the three checkpoints across each map in order to whittle down the opposition’s tickets. Starting out with 500 tickets, games typically take around 10 minutes to complete but will sometimes run a little longer. --Jennifer Allen
While games on the whole are noticeably simpler and easier than the games of the 80s and 90s, there’s also a genre full of games keen to remind you of why you enjoyed such challenges once upon a time. Potatoman Seeks The Troof is part of that genre, testing your ability to react exceptionally quickly. Some control issues aside, it’s mostly quite fun if all too brief. With the graphical prowess of an 8-bit console or computer, Potatoman Seeks The Troof is simple looking but also quite charming. Your sole objective is to dodge everything and survive. There’s a certain amount of pattern recognition involved here, but just when you think you fully get it down, it changes things up. Early on, you jump over various cacti. Then, inexplicably, one cactus leaps in the air – usually catching you out the first time round. So, Potatoman Seeks The Troof isn’t just about pattern recognition but also trial and error. Fortunately, it restarts quickly so you never lose out too much. --Jennifer Allen
As far as conspiracy theories go, the Philadelphia Experiment is a good one to base a game around. Urban legend states the priject, which was supposedly conducted by the United States’ Army in 1943, turned a US Navy destroyer invisible – thus paving the way for technology that would hide other ships and weapons from enemy eyes. But where do “invisible” things go once they’re zapped out of our realm of existence? According to Radiation Island from Atypical Games, the answer is “some mysterious place that’s super-hostile.” Thus begins a game that’s all about survival, crafting, and exploration. --Nadia Oxford
Toca Kitchen 2 is a companion to the popular Toca Kitchen – a favorite digital toy for both children and adults. I admire Toca Boca for their willingness to update their apps as well as to develop new versions of their creations in order to continue to challenge the creativity of young people in their various Toca Hair Salon apps, as well as Toca Kitchen apps – be it Kitchen Monsters, the original Toca Kitchen, and now Toca Kitchen 2. A few things have changed from the most recent update of Toca Kitchen; specifically the ability to combine ingredients both in the cooking process as well as on the plate to serve. The other major change here is the use of 3D graphics – as also seen in Toca Nature – when representing the three customers, as well as using muted shades of food textures to replicate the ingredients instead of the bright and colorful food illustrations I was fond of in the original app. --Amy Solomon
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If you are looking for the best reviews of Android apps, just head right over to AndroidRundown. Here are just some of the reviews served up this week:
Here’s the problem: I’ve come to appreciate quality earphones the older I’ve gotten. I won’t describe myself as an audiophile, but I do enjoy the output a quality set of phones can bring. As such, I do have write a few. Wired, wireless, over-ear, in-ear, lounging, sport… you name it, and I probably have a set for the occasion. I baby them too. They’re cased when not in use, and issued in places that negate the possibility of silly mishaps, like (gasp!) sitting on them. All because I like having options, and dislike procuring stuff twice.
You know what is kryptonite to gadget longevity? Kids. Take my daughter for instance. Ariana Grande must be heard, ave outside hearing the SAME song played on loop, I have to reluctantly lend her a pair of mine. Why aren’t there more gadgets available for kids? That’s a question the Puro Sound Labs Kids Headphones looks to answer. --Tre Lawrence
City Island 3 plays somewhat like a simpler version of SimCity. The player begins with a empty island and must construct a city from the ground up. Houses are placed for your citizens to live in and just like SimCity it is best to construct ones that hold more people to make maximum use of space. Businesses can be placed as well and these are the ones that generate money for the player, using a familiar timer based system. Businesses must be staffed with employees and thus you need to balance the amount of houses and businesses so there is always enough staff to crew your profitable businesses. --Allan Curtis
Checkpoint Champion is a cool new driving game that rewards careful, skilful driving. Taking control of cute SD versions of well-known cars the player weaves their way to greatness. Checkpoint Champion is a great fit for mobile gaming. Using a simple control system, the player must weave their way through very short ten second challenges. These involve driving into checkpoints before time runs out. Each challenge features plenty of fiendish challenges like hairpin turns; handbrake turns, obstacles that need to be avoided and plain tough driving. Checkpoint Champion rewards precision and it is very satisfying to get a level right. --Allan Curtis
Finally, this week Pocket Gamer got you free currency in Midnight Star and free critters in Pokemon, picked the best iOS and Android games of January, and handed out its first 10/10 of 2015. What was the lucky game? You’ll just have to click here, won’t you?
Attention all survivors: Curious to know how much fun we had trying to hunt habits and avoid zombies? Check out our Radiation Island review!
Radiation Island is a survival game, and as such will have two main categories that its players will naturally fall into: those who think it’s too difficult, and those who think it’s too easy. If you belong to the former, we’ve got some handy tips that should make your first few nights a fair bit easier to handle.
Grab whatever you can - You’re going to need supplies in order to craft tools and weapons, so make sure you grab everything you see laying on the ground when you’re starting out. This will come in handy very quickly.
Punch trees - It’s a silly tradition, really, but it’s just as useful here. If you find yourself low on resources and in need of twigs, you can gather them easily by just attacking a tree with nothing equipped.
Gather from bushes when you can - Large bushes can also be harvested for useful materials. Later on you’ll probably want to use a machete to make things easier but when you’re just starting out bare hands will work just fine. The materials you gather from these bushes will be necessary to craft medicine, bandages, and so on, so don’t ignore them!
Keep a stack of food on you at all times - You’ll start to get hungry pretty fast, and if you don’t have any food handy you’ll begin to starve in short order. You can find coconuts and pineapples scattered around the beach most of the time, so definitely keep as many on hand as you can.
Respect the item stacks - Items like food and resources can stack pretty high, so don’t worry about collecting a lot of them. Tools and weapons, on the other hand, do not stack. Keep this in mind when you go out scavenging because inventory space is extremely limited.
Craft tools as soon as you can - You’ll want at least one axe and one pick so that you can harvest more wood and stone more reliably than hoping you find some laying around. As a bonus, the axe can help you fend off wolves and other hostiles - it’s better than using your bare hands, at least.
Also make sure to craft a boomerang - It’s a silly little weapon, but it’s simple to craft and is also an important item for the beginning of your game. One hit from the boomerang should kill a rabbit (meat!), and it can be used to weaken a wolf at a distance before it closes in and you’ll have to fight it up close.
Explore, explore, explore - Keep venturing out to try and find structures to ransack. More often then not you’ll stumble upon items that will aid in crafting more advanced items, or even find better equipment.
Establish a home base - Find someplace, preferably a building of some kind as it’s less exposed, and use it as your base of operations. It might take some time to craft things like storage boxes and a bed (assuming one or both aren’t already present), but having a place to come back to when it gets dark and being able to dump all your stuff in a central location is incredibly handy.