Archive for the ‘apple’ tag
Posted on 5th Aug 2010 at 10:33 by Joe Martin with 21 comments
Ugh, it’s late – I’d better turn my iPhone off and go to bed. I’ll stop playing at the end of this turn, so I can start more easily tomorrow morning.
Well, I’m only two turns away from researching gunpowder actually, so I’ll finish that and then I’ll go to sleep…
Excellent, I get two Riflemen units as a bonus for researching Gunpowder first! I’ll just test them out, super-quickly. Gandhi is going to regret conquering Buffalo now!
What? An army of Archers could never defeat a platoon of Riflemen! I’ll rush some more soldiers through production, bring in that Cruiser for support and rectify this mistake next turn.
Posted on 27th Jul 2010 at 09:28 by Joe Martin with 2 comments
Egads! London has been invaded by monsters, who skulk through the shadowy, smoggy streets in search of fair maidens to devour. All that stands in their way is vampire hunter Van Helsing (and his man-servant, Raffton), who much push back this blight with naught but a handful of torches and a few monster-slaying tonics.
From the pitch you’d expect Helsing’s Fire to be just another clumsy action game, but it’s actually a rather gentle puzzle game played from the top-down perspective. The aim of the game is still to purge London of monsters, but it’s done with brains rather than brawn.
As with most puzzle games the gameplay is fairly straightforward at first, but quickly escalates as nuances and complications are layered on top of the core rules. To start with it’s merely a matter of positioning your flaming torch so that you cast rays of light on as many monsters as possible, then using colour-coded tonics to destroy them utterly. Later levels introduce more complicated elements though – shielded foes, fair maidens who must be protected and skellingtons who’ll extinguish your torch should you get too close.
Posted on 9th Jul 2010 at 10:00 by Joe Martin with 8 comments
The Predator franchise has a spotty history when it comes to videogames, ranging from the giddy and gory heights of the original AVP to the abominable lows of Concrete Jungle on the PS2. So, our hopes weren’t high for the iPhone game based on the new Adrian Brody movie, Predators.
As it turns out, that’s just as well too. Predators isn’t actually a bad game, but it’d be a stretch to say that it’s a really good one. The Appstore is practically overflowing with arcade survival games these days and though Predators is functional and fun, it doesn’t really stand out all that much.
Predators on the iPhone is a fairly predictable affair, essentially a mission based survival game of the arcade variety. Each mission is slightly different, but the basic premise is always the same – as a lone Predator you have to prove your worth by besting armed humans. The specific objectives vary each time, so sometimes it’s a matter of surviving for X amount of time and sometimes it’s about scoring certain types of kills, but the underlying gameplay is always the same.
Posted on 29th Jun 2010 at 11:39 by Joe Martin with 4 comments
Sequel to one of my favourite iPhone platformers, Hook Champ, Super Quick Hook’s is easily one of the most addictive games on the AppStore, even though it’s mainly just an iterative advancement on it’s predecessor. Really, other than new graphics and levels, it doesn’t add all that much to the original formula – if anything, it takes things away and reduces it to the bare essentials.
Where Hook Champ was a cave-based race against time that saw you swinging through caverns in a bid to reach the exit before a giant ghost ate you, Super Quick Hook is a lot more relaxed and open. There’s nothing chasing you now, so you can leisurely take in the scenery and explore the much larger levels in search of secrets.
Control and feature-wise, Super Quick Hook is almost identical to the original Hook Champ though; just touch and hold where you want to shoot your grappling hook and start flinging yourself through the levels and grabbing as many coins as you can. Once you reach the end of a level you’re booted back to the main screen and can use your booty to buy upgrades or cosmetic tweaks before you try another level.
Posted on 4th Jun 2010 at 10:59 by Joe Martin with 8 comments
Square Enix has been one of the best major publishers on the iPhone, bringing some solid ports of the early Final Fantasy games, as well as some more original games exclusive to the iPhone. Chaos Rings sits neatly between those two ideas; since it’s basically a Final Fantasy game exclusive to the iPhone.
Well, OK, it’s not technically a Final Fantasy game – it’s lacking the FF prefix and there’s probably all sorts of smaller stylistic changes I’m not familiar with, but as far as a layman is concerned it’s basically the same. It’s stuffed with random encounters, old-school turn-based combat and characters with strange names, stupid hair and a penchant for muttering to themselves like old alcoholics.
Crucially too, while the boiled down description of ‘it’s just Final Fantasy on the iPhone” may sound like a bad thing, in reality it really, really isn’t. Chaos Rings is actually quite brilliant.
Posted on 5th Mar 2010 at 11:32 by Joe Martin with 19 comments
We got some new gadgets the other day, when Creative swung by the office and were nice enough to deposit some of their new gear for us to take a look at. I was particularly taken by the new Creative Vado HD, which is a small digital camcorder. It’s really a rather fantastic bit of kit, to be honest.
The Vado HD is smaller and thinner than my wallet (but not lighter than it, ho-ho!) and really simple to use. It’s got a built in USB cable that tucks out of the way nicely, plus a port for plugging in headphones, speakers etc. The screen is a good quality and the battery and storage can manage about two hours of HD recording from a single full charge. Stonking stuff.
The only really problem with it in fact are the little touch sensitive buttons, which can be a little fiddly. Other than that it’s an instant-on, high quality digital camcorder. It’s wonderful but, as I played with it at home last night, it struck me that it’s still by far not the best gadget I own.