This week at 148Apps.com, writer Carter Dotson reviewed one of the most anticipated iOS games in recent memory – Infinity Blade II. Dotson writes, “Most of what is new here is a modified and extended progression structure. Instead of one path leading to a final boss, where failure means starting over, there are now several of them, with more branching paths to explore. There are 3 different weapon types now: the traditional swords, slow and heavy axes that deal more damage, and speedy dual swords that deal less base damage, but can do double damage once combos are started. The story is more fleshed out, with actual speaking dialogue from characters besides the God King.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2011-12-01 :: Category: Games
Meanwhile, our attention was turned to more artistic matters at GiggleApps, as Amy Solomon reviewed Auryn – Van Gogh and the Sunflowers. Solomon says, “The look of this app is terrific, with illustrations evoking the style that Van Gogh is known for, complete with bold color choices and noticeable use of brush strokes, but maintains a childlike quality that fits well within this storybook. The jazzy music used is also wonderful, relaxing as well as engaging and very enjoyable to listen to even for long periods of time. The narration used here is also quite good. Parents will also like that each spoken word is highlighted red to aid the young children new to the world of reading.”
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2011-10-22 :: Category: Books
Finally, 148Apps.biz site editor Rob Lefebvre reported on tablet users and their media consumption. LeFebvre writes, “In a study put out by comScore and reported by Fierce Mobile Content and the appside, interested parties can see that the number one use of tablet devices is games, with 67% of surveyed tablet users saying they’ve played a game at least once in the past month, as compared to 49% of smartphone users surveyed. 23% of those surveyed said they’d played a game on their tablet EVERY DAY. That’s a good number.”
That’s our wrap-up for this week. While you’re out getting all of your holiday shopping done, don’t forget to check us out on our Facebook and Twitter feeds to find out the latest and greatest news, reviews and contests. Feliz Navidad!
This week at 148Apps.com was all about the US celebration of Thanksgiving, and the inevitable retail aftermath known as Black Friday. Rather than fight the crowds, 148Apps founder Jeff Scott put together a comprehensive Black Friday app sale list that continues to grow, and grow and grow. Scott says, “App sales are nothing new, but the biggest of the year is here, and we’ll be tracking the best of the sale apps right here. Expect lots of updates over the weekend.”
Jeff Scott also invited faithful 148Apps.biz readers to attend the upcoming AppNation III conference, saying, “Want to attend AppNation III? 148Apps network readers can get a 30% discount on the registration fee by using code 148APPS on the registration page.”
Meanwhile, at AndroidRundown, site editor Rob LeFebvre celebrated the release of Disney interactive’s Where’s My Water? for the Android platform. LeFebvre writes, “Android has been part of the plan since the development of Where’s My Water? for the iPhone crowd. In fact, the game was originally developed with C++, to make it easier to port to Android. The challenge, he said, is making sure the game is the same high quality experience across the myriad devices represented by Google’s hip operating system.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2011-09-22 :: Category: Games
Finally, on our parent-friendly GiggleApps site, Amy Solomon reviewed Don’t Let The Pigeon Run This App! Solomon writes, “I love these books. Pigeon can be cheeky, and my son has used pigeons’s one-liners, such as offering to “Give you five bucks” himself to try to stay up late. For this reason, some parents may feel that this pigeon is a bad influence on children, but I love the idea of my son practicing his ability to say “no” to this scheming pigeon as I want him to be prepared to stand his ground later in life when he is confronted by peer pressure, and I want him to recognize when he is being manipulated.”
Graphic novels appear to be going through a bit of a renaissance period in recent times with increasing numbers of people intrigued by the very notion. So it’s pretty cool to see a cumulative effort between a BAFTA (the equivalent of the Emmys in the UK) nominated screenwriter, a BAFTA winning executive producer and an award-winning graphic artist come together in the form of a new iPhone based graphic novel.
The novel entitled Exodus169 is all about an epic journey through space to the Planet Lumina, where humans hope to establish their first colony beyond Earth. Obviously things are bound to not quite go according to plan and it all makes for a gripping novel.
The novel is accompanied by stunning artwork and an original and fully-voiced soundtrack which all add a touch of class to proceedings. Depth is provided through a number of extras such as videos, character profiles, character blogs and even an on-board newspaper with new content uploaded weekly.
It’s interesting stuff and at a decent price too. The app along with Episode 1 and the regularly updated extras are free while Episode 2 and future instalments are only $0.99. Well worth a look for any graphic novel fan.
Fierce Grey Mouse HD is a delightful interactive story about a grey mouse who wants to be fierce like a wild animal. It is simply delightful to watch this mouse practice his fierceness – the roaring, and the pouncing, along with the exercising and healthy eating habits that it takes to grow big and strong. The only pitfall is that all grand, fierce gestures have scared his friends, and now there is nobody to play with. Rest assured; all ends well in this charming story that kids will enjoy, and maybe even relate to. Versions are available for both iPhone as well as iPad.
A new hybrid form of game and comic is set to be released by Square Enix for iOS devices.
Known as Imaginary Range, the app sets out to allow players to flick through comic pages while also playing through a variety of different game sequences. Games look to be mostly mini-game in nature within a full-color comic book and similarly detailed plot.
The project has been overseen by Motomu Toriyama, director of Final Fantasy XIII, with novelist Souki Tsukishima handling the storyline, and Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles series artist Toshiyuki Itahana in charge of the artwork. With pedigree that strong Imaginary Range is looking rather interesting indeed.
The comic/game is set in France during an attack by an evil creature known only as Omega and it’s down to Cid (yes, Final Fantasy fans, another character called Cid) and Ciela to stop this menance.
Once you complete the story, you can then unlock further comic commentary as well as the ability to play the game separately from the comicbook. If gameplay is anything like the visuals then Imaginary Range could well be something special.
Even better, it’s free to download and an universal app so iPad and iPhone/iPod Touch fans alike can enjoy it.
Beyond the unusual name, Mongoliad is an exciting new project that could play a part in changing the landscape for modern-day literature and the way it’s published. While everybody is busy talking about how the iPad could revolutionize the magazine market, this new serial novel collaboration is breaking new ground for both writers and consumers of traditional books.
Looking beyond the simple eBook reader mentality, Mongoliad harnesses the writing skills of Neal Stephenson, Greg Bear and others who will all contribute to the developing narrative. While a traditional story exists, Mongoliad’s aim is to create a world of interactivity between writers, readers and other non-literary members who can contribute to and enhance the story.
Mongoliad is due for launch this year and will be available on the iPhone and iPad.
Demoing just a few of Mongoliad’s promised features, Jeremy Bornstein of Subutai told us: “We think that devices like this really change publishing in a pretty fundamental way. Not just moving books into eBooks but really allowing for a lot more creative possibilities for engaging audiences”.
Set in around 1241 with the Mongol hoards threatening to destroy Europe, the novel will pull from a number of sources to ensure authenticity and from what we’ve heard so far, this includes experts in sword fighting to provide a healthy dose of swashbuckling knowledge.
The ins and outs of Mongoliad are still sketchy right now but we’re excited to see how the project progresses and, with such big names on board, how many others attempt to produce their own “novel within an app within an online service”. Most will likely be waiting to see the kind of buzz Mongoliad generates before taking the plunge but, from what we’ve seen so far, it’ll only be a matter of time.