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Tap Tap Revenge Franchise Comes to an End

Posted by Andrew Stevens on January 9th, 2014

After 5 years running, the Tap Tap Revenge games are coming to an end. In a Facebook post on the Tap Tap Revenge page, it's said that "it no longer makes sense for us to maintain the Tap Tap franchise" due to the changing mobile and music markets. The games have been removed from the App Store and all premium content has been taken down. The servers are also scheduled to be shut down on February 5th.

Tap Tap Revenge was originally created by Tapulous which was absorbed into Disney Mobile in July, 2010. Tap Tap Revenge users will continue to be able to play any tracks that are available on their device. However, after February 5th, they will no longer be able to restore any of their previously purchased songs.

A storied franchise, one of the first games release for the iPhone, even before there was an App Store is no more. Take a look below at the original trailer for Tap Tap Revenge, now five years old.

App Store Insiders: Mike Lee, Co-Founder of Tapulous Talks Responsibility on the App Store

Posted by Jeff Scott on July 10th, 2013

Mike Lee has been all over the App Store since, well honestly before launch. He helped found Tapulous, the studio that brought out the first Twitter client on the iPhone via jailbreak, before the App Store was around, and of course the hugely popular Tap Tap Revenge. Tapulous would later go on to be acquired by Disney. He was also part of the small team that brought the revolutionary Obama '08 app to the App Store. And then there was a short stint at Apple as well as the founding of the Amsterdam-based incubator, Appsterdam.

Mike has seen it all when it comes to the App Store. Let's get his take on the past five years and the next five.

148Apps: How has the App Store changed your professional life?

Mike Lee, New Lemurs: It would be easier to say how the App Store has not changed my professional life. When the App Store was announced, I was just coming off a three-year apprenticeship with the legendary Mac developer Delicious Monster. It has worked out that my beloved mentor Wil Shipley continues to run rampant through Mac OS, and I've been able to carry his memes forward into iOS.

I cannot overstate the value of those skills when demand exploded. Combined with the things I learned by working on iPhone projects with people smarter than me, like Lucas Newman, Guy English, Brent Simmons, and Chris Parrish, I was able to do things beyond my wildest dreams.

I got to be co-founder of not one but two Silicon Valley startups, Tapulous and United Lemur. I got to meet legends like Steve Wozniak, Bill Atkinson, and Andy Stone.

I even got to work at Apple, had my own office on Infinite Loop, got my name on Mac OS X server, got to work on the flagship Apple Store app, then went on a year-long speaking tour around the world before settling in Amsterdam, which is just about the nicest place in the world I have found to be an App Maker.

Now, as co-founder of Appsterdam and the New Lemurs, I get to work with incredible people who continue to make me better every day, which is exactly what a professional life requires.

What we were doing on the Mac was really great, but it wasn't Tapulous, United Lemur, Apple World Tour, Appsterdam, or New Lemurs great. None of that would have happened but for hard work, incredible luck, and little thing called the App Store.

148Apps: You were involved with Tapulous and app creation before the App Store even launched, I believe. You had to feel like a pioneer, breaking ground and doing things no one had ever done before. What were things like back then? Any official response from Apple, before the iPhone SDK was launched in 2008?

Mike Lee: I know how I felt, and I know I wasn't alone. Not everybody felt the same way, but a lot of people did. We were incredibly eager, incredibly passionate, and incredibly naïve, exactly as you would expect. We constantly compared ourselves and each other to the original Mac team. We knew we were the successor to the Mac, the future of computing, and we felt a tingly responsibility to make sure it went right this time.

We knew we were making history, but more than that, we knew we were setting an example. There was a lot of worry at places like Wolf Rentzsch's legendary C4 conference about the kinds of apps we should make and the kinds of App Makers we should be. For example, I am very opposed to casual misogyny, and spent a lot of energy preventing things like "Hot or Not" from making it to the App Store.

I was very lucky to be in Palo Alto, so I could drive to Apple at least once a week and talk to people there, to get their opinions, their help, and their guidance. I knew they didn't like us, because we had been involved with Jailbreak. That was frustrating, because early Jailbreak was born of passion and it was how we learned.

Of course it's not like Apple puts a horse's head in your bed when they don't like you. They just stop talking to you. By the time of the App Store, I was already a well established name on the Mac. I had an Apple Design Award and the personal phone numbers of half of Developer Relations.

Don't get me wrong, these folks were my friends, and they continued being my friends, but on a professional level it was the cold shoulder. We were conspicuously absent from the big debut. They even failed to have our submissions up on Day 0 as they had promised.

But at the same time, Director of Evangelism John Geleynse, who is the coolest dude I know, gave me a lot of advice about having perspective and looking at the big picture. When they didn't have us up on the first day, I just drove to Infinite Loop and bought the nascent App Review team coffee and pastries and told them I knew exactly how hard they were working, because we were going through it too.

I had faith then, as I do now, that great products rise to the top. I knew Steve would not be able to resist a great game about music. It wasn't long before Tap Tap Revenge was on stage with Steve, and by the time I went to Apple, it hung on a 60-foot banner in the foyer of 1 Infinite Loop.

148Apps: If you have one single success within the App Store you'd like to highlight, what would it be?

Mike Lee: I'm really excited about the work the New Lemurs are doing. I've been trying to blend technology and altruism both on and off the App Store since before it was a thing, with everything from the Club Thievey fundraising drive that linked Mac developers with the Madagascar Fauna Group to the Obama '08 app to Appsterdam and on into Lemurs Chemistry.

What distinguishes my work now from what I was doing 5 years ago is this: while I'm still focused on providing great products and experiences to people, that has stopped being the end in and of itself. Now I am much more concerned with spreading good memes. My abilities as an App Maker, and my ability to be an example of what kind of apps we should make and what kind of App Makers we should be, have switched seats.

My current obsession is the idea that games would not be a waste of time if they were made based on science. By replacing the arbitrary game mechanics with rules from nature, you end up with games that happen to be educational as a side-effect, instead of trying to gamify education. Lemurs Chemistry is the embodiment of that idea, and it's the best game I've ever produced.

148Apps: What about one thing you have done that you think should have taken off, but never did?

Mike Lee: Well, of course, the Tapulous story is an interesting one, because the original design and engineering team ended up separating from the management team and forming United Lemur. There was a lot of great stuff we worked on before we left that ended up going nowhere once the company focused only on Tap Tap Revenge.

I still think a lot about those projects, and some of the projects we worked on as United Lemur other than the Obama app. Puzzllotto was the only cash contest to ever run on the App Store that I'm aware of, since they were banned after that, but I don't know that the world would be a better place if that game had taken off. We spent a lot of time worrying about what would happen if it did.

The one that breaks my heart to this day was the one that never shipped: Pyrangle. Because of my non-profit work, I ended up making the acquaintance of an incredible group called the Gear Up Foundation. Their founder was a firefighter who had been trapped in the rubble of the World Trade Center, who had resigned himself to death, and who, upon being saved, had dedicated himself to the good of his brothers and sisters still fighting.

When it turned out there weren't many 9/11 survivors to help, he repurposed his foundation to provide equipment and training to fire departments around the world. Pyrangle was a game about fire safety whose proceeds would have financed bringing the Gear Up Foundation into Madagascar.

Then the world financial system collapsed, taking my retirement savings and ability to pay my team along with it.  To top it off, Madagascar descended into a civil war, and I descended into burnout. The team had to go get jobs, seeding the next generation of App Store wonders like Square and Black Pixel, so it's not like things didn't work out.

But still, Madagascar burns.

148Apps: In the five years since launch, the App Store has gone through considerable changes. The number of users has skyrocketed along with downloads, prices for paid apps has stabilized way lower than many expected, free to play has dominated the top grossing charts. If, knowing what you know about the App Store now, you could go back and influence your path five years ago, what would you say?

Mike Lee: Let me say this flat out: I hate what has happened with monetization on the App Store. I think it's immoral to drain money out of people's pockets through their children, and I think that while the tools Apple provides can be used to make a great experience, most people aren't using them that way. The experience has become about the monetization, which is backwards and wrong.

I refuse to make money this way, and have spent five years fighting this practice with every fiber of my being, from the presentations I give, to the business plans I write. The New Lemurs have a promise to parents not to upsell, advertise, nor mine data for money. We have made our revulsion into our strategy.

But that's not really the question, is it? I can hardly go back and give myself 5 years of hard-won experience, but there is one mistake I made that could have changed everything, had I known what was going to happen with App Store pricing.

We thought we could bootstrap United Lemur on game sales. We turned down funding from Kleiner Perkins, unwittingly damning ourselves into an unsustainable business model. If I knew then what would happen, I would have taken the help from Kleiner. They could have saved the team, and Madagascar might be better off.

While we can't go back to the past, we can make the past mean something by learning from it. My business plans now are all about how to make money regardless of game sales, without selling our souls. It's not easy, and it is only sustainable because I live a very simple life, often supported by side work like teaching people to make their own apps at the Big Nerd Ranch.

I might go down as the idiot who keeps walking away from money because his morals get in the way, but I consider myself lucky. I get to wake up every day and do my little part to make the world a better place, and I feel my impact in other people's lives. My work may leave the App Store, my name may be forgotten, but I will die knowing I have taught, inspired, and worked with some of the best people in the world.

148Apps: What have you seen on the App Store, outside of apps you are associated with, that has surprised you most?

Mike Lee: I think five years ago most of us were very naïve about information warfare. We had no real inkling of what it meant to own information. We didn't know or understand that China had already had a cyber warfare division in training for five years. We didn't know how pervasive governmental and corporate information gathering had become. We didn't realize how naked we were before incomprehensible power, nor how thoroughly our dreams played into their plans.

I never thought I would see drones controlled by an iPad go from being a great demo to being a worldwide nightmare. I never thought I would see ubiquitous presence of data via the cloud become the means by which they intrude into our lives in an attempt to control us. I never thought I would see the Internet become the ties that bind and strangle.

I have always believed that openness and transparency were important, but have never allied with the likes of Linux or Android, because I do not believe openness makes products great by itself. Being open is like being nutritious or being educational. You have to find a way to make those features part of the best products, rather than declaring that those features make products best.

My business plans and personal projects for the development year running between WWDC13 and WWDC14 revolve around open source. I know I will be considered late to the party by many, but I can say with surety that this shift in my thinking is a direct result of what I think is a wide awakening to the new realities of the Information Age.

Never has it been more important for us to ask ourselves what apps we should be building, and what kind of App Makers we should be.

148Apps: Any predictions for what the App Store will be like five years from now?

Mike Lee: Among the many adventures the App Store has afforded me was climbing a bit of the Great Wall of China. They really should call it the Great Staircase of China, because it is an incredibly challenging hike. The one moment I will never forget is looking behind me at how far I had climbed, and looking ahead of me at far I had to go, an infinity in both directions.

It's incredible to me that we can talk about the App Store five years from now in a way we could not have foreseen five years ago. Even among the true believers, I think I would have been embarrassed to talk about five years from now five years ago. Certainly I should have been. But now? It would be more controversial to suggest the App Store wouldn't be here in five years.

When I was in China, I asked an old man if he ever thought about something so grandiose as the future of China, and what he wanted for his children. With tears in his eyes, he spoke of how he had starved, as generations before him had starved, and in that instant I understood Chinese culture more than I ever had, despite growing up surrounded by Chinese people in Hawaii.

My children will have enough to eat, he said, and the rest is up to them.

Huge thanks to Mike Lee for his time. Mike's latest app Lemurs Chemistry: Water is available in the App Store and is free today in celebration of the App Store 5th anniversary.

[ Photo credit Tom Hayton ]

Tap Tap Revenge Tour Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Lisa Caplan on July 12th, 2012
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: POP PLEASURE
Tap Tap Revenge is back on tour with more songs than ever
Read The Full Review »

Tap Tap Muppets Review

By Lisa Caplan on November 30th, 2011
Disney and Tapulous pair up to offer tap gamers and Muppets fans a free holiday treat.
Read The Full Review »

Green Day Revenge Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Blake Grundman on March 24th, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: ROCK ON!
Rock out, Green Day style.
Read The Full Review »

Tap Tap Revenge 4 Continues TapTap's Musical Tradition

Posted by Bonnie Eisenman on January 24th, 2011
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

Tap Tap Revenge will forever be remembered as the first true music game on the app store. Since the dawn of the App Store, Tap Tap Revenge and its subsequent sequels have defined music games on iOS devices. To put it into perspective: the previous iterations of Tap Tap (including Tap Tap Revenge Classic, Tap Tap Revenge 2.6, and Tap Tap Revenge 3) are three of the top ten all-time paid downloads in the App Store. Yikes.

Tap Tap Revenge 4 debuted about a month ago to record downloads, continuing the series' tradition of rampant popularity. Tap Tap Revenge 4 brings many changes to the table along with its tried-and-true formula. The game still revolves around tapping "notes" as they scroll towards you, but now there's also an Arcade Mode and up-to-date global leaderboards thanks to Game Center. You can also engage in online battles against other players. Given that Tap Tap claims 15 million players, you ought to be able to find someone to test your tapping skills against. The graphics are also much spiffier, though now the company recommends you play on a third- or fourth-generation device.

Of course, one of the foremost reasons people love rhythm games is the music itself. Tap Tap Revenge 4 includes plenty of paid tracks like its predecessors, but there's a decent library of over a hundred free songs as well. Additionally, Tapulous promises that a new free song will be released every week. The music trends toward the mainstream, but that doesn't make it bad. You'll find hits from artists like Linkin Park, My Chemical Romance, Rihanna, Owl City, and Avenged Sevenfold, just to name a few of the stars on Tapulous's lineup.

Tap Tap Revenge has a long and successful history on the App Store. This fourth iteration delivers more of the same, but in this case, "more of the same" should be more than enough to sate even the most rabid rhythm-lovers. For now, Tap Tap Revenge is free on the App Store. Grab it while it's hot!

Tap Tap Revenge 4 Now Available

Posted by Brad Hilderbrand on December 20th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

The Tap Tap Revenge franchise is already a huge one and it just became even bigger. Developer Tapulous has just released Tap Tap Revenge 4, and the newest edition of the game bundles the franchise's huge back-catalog of songs together into one massive app. As if that weren't enough, the game comes pre-loaded with over 100 free songs to tap along to, featuring bands such as Linkin Park and My Chemical Romance. The crew behind the game has also been updating the store, adding tracks from artists such as Nelly, Katy Perry and more.

The app is also showcasing a slickly redesigned interface, optimized for the iPhone's new Retina Display. The game is also integrating Game Center, as well as a like button which will show you which tracks are most popular amongst you and your friends, as well as constantly updating leaderboards to show who's got the fastest fingers. This is easily the most comprehensive game in the series, and there's really no reason for franchise fans to skip out.

The genius of Tap Tap Revenge is the freemium model it follows, tempting users with free songs and then hooking them into buying premium tracks. The fact that Tapulous releases a new free song every week means that players are constantly checking back into the app, and while they're browsing they may just find a song or two they wouldn't mind paying to add to their collection. Granted, the music in the game tends to skew towards the Top 40 charts, but its hard to blame the developers for that, they're just giving the people what they want.

Though Rock Band and Guitar Hero may own the console scene, Tap Tap Revenge dominates iOS, and rightly so. The sheer volume of content available and free price tag is music to the ears of gamers, and this latest edition only serves to further cement Tap Tap's place at the top of the heap. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to tap some Katy Perry, take that sentence in whatever way you want.

[via PocketGamer]

Disney Acquires Tap Tap Revenge Developer, Tapulous

Posted by Bonnie Eisenman on July 5th, 2010

Tapulous has long reigned as king of the App Store music games. Back in the App Store's early days, they released a humble, free music game...one of the first. Since then, they've expanded, partnering with major artists and raking in the cash thanks to in-app purchases and a plethora of music-related apps. And now, it looks like the original developers have scored again—only this time, they've been acquired by Disney.

While Disney doesn't immediately come to mind when it comes to the App Store, they actually have 30+ apps released. It's not the first time they've acquired an iPhone game, either; Jelly Car 2 is also now a Disney property. As for Tapulous, well, who could blame anyone for being interested? Though the purchase price hasn't been announced, we know that Tapulous is very valuable indeed. The Tap Tap Revenge series has already racked up 1 billion song plays and 35 million downloads.

Moving forward, don't fret about Tap Tap Revenge suddenly disappearing from the App Store. Tapulous founder Bart Decrem and COO Andrew Lacy will be joining Disney as senior VPs, but they certainly aren't abandoning their company. Rather, Tapulous will be "spearheading [Disney's] drive to be the leader in mobile entertainment." Translation: Disney plans on putting the Tapulous team's knack for mobile success to good use.

Hats off to the folks at Tapulous!

Sources: TechCrunch

Friday Five: May 14th, 2010

Posted by Bonnie Eisenman on May 14th, 2010

Fridays are the perfect time for reflecting on the past week...and Fridays at 148apps are no exception. Here are five interesting apps released in the past week for your perusal!

ustwo seems to enjoy creating unique apps, such as the masterfully titled "...". Inkstrumental is their newest app, and it's a funky one. The point is to create your own weird music videos and strange soundtracks, using the 31 creatures included. See, each character will emit a musical sound when you tap it. A "VIP character" allows you to record your own sounds, too. By mixing them together against different backdrops you create a unique mash-up of noise and your very own music video. It might not be as complex as other sound-mixing apps, but Inkstrumental is intuitive and packs a ton of character. Who couldn't love these fuzzy creatures? As an added bonus, you can share your masterpieces by in-app uploading to YouTube.

Nirvana Revenge
By now it's an established fact that the Tap Tap Revenge series reigns supreme when it comes to iPhone rhythm games, at least in terms of popularity. Nirvana Revenge is the latest spin-off, featuring—you guessed it—hits from Nirvana. Fourteen songs are bundled with the app, including songs like Smells Like Teen Spirit, Breed, Heart Shaped Box, and Lithium. (Note that the fourteen includes three live versions.) The songs give you a good sampling of the band's work, and you get to tap along to the fourteen tracks for far less than they would cost on iTunes. This being a Tap Tap game, you also have a few neat features like four difficulty levels and four boss tracks thrown in. If you're a Nirvana Fan looking for a gaming fix, you'd better check out Nirvana Revenge.

To quote Komenten's description: "A comet has been born, please take good care of it!" Komenten is a colorful space exploration game in which you zip around the galaxy like an intergalactic tourist. There's no real objective, but the vivid watercolor graphics coupled with the soundtrack make a relaxing, beautiful ride. Even if you don't usually enjoy non-traditional games, I'm willing to wager that anyone in touch with their inner child could easily get lost in Komenten's vibrant, bizarre world. The universe is such an exciting place—why not explore it?

Zombie Infection
Gameloft just keeps rolling out games. Zombie Infection is one of their latest titles, and if it looks familiar, well, chances are that's because it's highly similar to Resident Evil. That doesn't stop Zombie Infection from being a technically stunning title, however, and Gameloft's new zombie game is sure to devour both your brains and your free time. Zombie Infection comes with a 12-level campaign mode in which you switch between ex-soldier Damien Sharpe and journalist Alex Rayne, as well as a Survivor Mode. There are tons of enemies, including mutated and infected animals, plenty of weapons, a sinister zombie-filled storyline, and top-notch 3D graphics. In short? Gameloft does it again...this time, with zombies!

StreetSpark is one of those apps that needs a large user base to function, which is probably why it's free! StreetSpark is a location-based dating app that takes your location and searches for nearby users who match your profile (they call this a "Spark"). With an eye towards safety, StreetSpark doesn't reveal your location or personal contact info. Instead, you can chat in-app or meet up in one of StreetSpark's HotSpots, which give StreetSpark users discounts and offer users a place to congregate. Think FourSquare, but for dating. It's a really interesting use of the location feature, and thankfully it looks like the app's developers are aware of privacy concerns. Sadly, it's currently limited to the UK, but the developers plan to expand to other countries (and, for that matter, handsets) in the future.

Riddim Ribbon

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Bonnie Eisenman on February 15th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: LACKLUSTER
Riddim Ribbon is a decent first attempt, but falls flat in too many places.
Read The Full Review »

Tuesday Morning App HQ?

Posted by Chris Hall on December 22nd, 2009

Christmas Time Is Here!
Christmas is in just four days, and the best gift of all is definitely a new iDevice for your loved one. Sure, you could give a plain ol' iPod Touch or iPhone, but wouldn't he/she be so much happier with an iDevice loaded up with a few apps? Here's 4 that I think everyone should have.

1. Tweetie 2
Whether or not the person you are buying your iDevice for uses Twitter or not... they will very soon. They may scoff at the idea now, but the ability to Tweet about your surroundings with text message ease makes the idea far more attractive. Being the best of its kind, Tweetie 2 is the way to go for all of your narcissistic Twitter needs.

2. Midomi Sound Hound
It used to just be called Midomi, and it used to be absolutely free, but given the fact that Shazam charges too, I figured I'd go with Midomi for my recommendation. Like Shazam, Midomi can tag a song out of midair, but it goes one step further and pulls songs that you sing or hum into the mic. Is "Hey Mr. Tambourine Man" stuck in your head, but you can't think of The Byrds? Pull out Midomi and start humming. Warning. If you are entirely tone deaf, this really won't do you much good.

3. Yelp
Sure, it's an old, no-fun app, but it is an app that I use on almost every vacation I take. Just select 'near me', choose 'restaurant', and then pick. It's that easy. If you need a bit more excitement in your life, I'd go with the even older UrbanSpoon, which does the same thing but leaves the selection process to the phone itself. Watching the slot machine selection process is great though.

4. Need For Speed: Undercover
I know I'm going to get flack for this, but here is my rationale. If you are pre-loading a game for this iDevice, I'm assuming that the person is somewhere between the ages of 13-18, and that they like games... otherwise they would probably just go buy their own games. You could certainly take a gamble and buy an RPG like SEED, Zenonia, or Inotia 2, but RPG's really don't show off the system like other games do. Remember, this is the game that people are going to show of to their buds and say, "Pshh, eat that PSP". Personally, I would go with a tower defense game, but there is nothing sexy about tower defense. To show off the full graphics capabilities of the iDevice, I would go with a full speed racer. Most would probably say that Real Racing is the way to go here, but as a show-off piece, it falls in one crucial area... cut scenes. Sure, the cut scene does nothing to enhance the gameplay, but if you really want to stick it to your UMD toting, PSP playing friend, just show them that your iDevice can roll with a game complete with full motion video. NFS: Underground really is the most complete video game on the device, even if it may not be the best.

Vector TD
Speaking of Tower Defense, Candystand just put Vector TD onto the iPhone. Sure, it's not the prettiest thing you'll ever see, but if it's anything like the web version, it will be fun. I'm just now downloading it to my iPhone, but I'll hopefully have a review up soon.

Big Dollars
For all the stories I hear of iPhone devs struggling to make ends meet, it's good to hear a success story or two every once in a while. According to a recent Reuters article, Tapulous says that it is pulling in a million dollars a month from its 'Tap Tap Revenge game series. According to the article, "Earlier this year, research group comScore said the game had been installed by one-third of Apple app users."

Having only 20 employees total, the guys over at Tapulous are certainly doing well for themselves. They aren't the only ones though... Lima Sky, the dev behind the Top 10 Paid App stalwart, Doodle Jump, recently announced that they have passed a million downloads. While they aren't pulling in a $1mil a month, they are splitting all the profit between its 2 employees, Igor and Marko Pusenjak. Merry Christmas indeed.

Big Finish
Well that's all I have for this week. I hope all of you have a great holiday weekend... just don't eat so much that you won't be able to read 148apps on Monday. That just wouldn't be good for anyone.

Tap Tap Revenge 3

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Drew LaCroix on October 22nd, 2009
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: BEST YET
There are many Tap Tap Revenge fanatics out in the real world, along with me. Being such a big fan gave me extremely high expectations, but rest assured, this is the best game to date.
Read The Full Review »

Tapulous hit the trifecta, Tap Tap Revenge 3 on its way

Posted by Kyle Flanigan on September 28th, 2009

Big changes and a small price tag. Tapulous have submitted and are awaiting approval of their latest instalment of the highly popular Tap Tap Revenge game, according to Business Insider. A myriad of new features include in-app purchasing of avatars and music, a new feature of 3.0, allowing users to download two tracks for $0.99 or six tracks for $2.99.

Tap Tap Revenge 3 is due to be live on the App Store "sometime next month" at the price tag of $0.99 (£0.59). The price tag was unavoidable with in-app purchasing, which Apple requires all developers to price the application itself also. Expect to hear more in the next coming weeks, and as always, we'll have a review up within days of its release.


iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jeff Scott on December 3rd, 2008
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: RECOMMENDED
Strategy board game will have you buzzing
Read The Full Review »

Puzzllotto, First Release From United Lemer Due Monday

Posted by Jeff Scott on October 18th, 2008

Puzzllotto the first release from United Lemur is due to be released Monday with a huge promotion attached. While the game briefly showed up in the App Store tonight, it quickly disappeared. The game itself is puzzle based set in an amazingly lush jungle. The actual method of game play and the goal is unknown at the start -- it's all part of the exploration aspect of the game. Similar to Myst in that aspect, it's all up to the player to figure out. What is known is that the first person to finish the game is in for a big surprise.

We got a chance to play with a pre-release version of this game and the graphics and sounds are fantastic. The sounds have been provided by the amazing Dr. Douglas Quin -- who also did the sounds for EA's Spore. While the graphics have been done by Louie Mantia who made many of the Tapulous apps look so goodDavid Lanham. While we'd like to say that we don't want to ruin the surprise on how the game is played, the truth is we haven't spent enough time with it yet to figure it out.

While we can't tell you everything we know about the promotion that's backing this game's release -- well not until the embargo is lifted, hopefully Monday, United Lemur has set up an amazingly huge promotion lined up for this first release. The name of the app may give you some clue as to the direction, but you will be amazed at the details.

One small clue from the description of the game in the App Store:

Be the first to uncover its secrets and claim the title and trophy of the Puzzllotto Champion. The malevolent spirits are all in your head, but the fun—and the treasure—are real.

United Lemur, you may remember, is the group of veteran developers many of whom were most recently at Tapulous. After a few of them left the company, Mike Lee formed United Lemur as a socially conscious indie development house.

Check back Monday for more on the game and the promotion. Until then, keep hitting this URL as you might be able to get it early and get a head start.