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Archive for the ‘ipad’ tag

iPhone Preview: Dead Space

Posted on 3rd Jan 2011 at 08:33 by Joe Martin with 15 comments

Joe Martin
It’s too easy to use the word ‘impressive’ to describe some of the new releases hitting the App Store lately; the word is starting to lose meaning and isn’t that useful to start with. We’re talking about games running on a mobile phone – all they have to do is be even semi-playable and they end up way ahead of expectations.

Dead Space for the iPhone, however, looks very impressive.

The kudos here doesn’t stem just from the graphical detail that’s been ploughed into the game though, but more from the depth of the gameplay. Dead Space on the iPhone is essentially that – Dead Space for the iPhone, feature complete. It has the same third person perspective, the same sprawling and haunting levels and the same focus on dismembering enemies. Lopping limbs off with your array of mining tools and scavenged weapons is a little bit trickier on a touch screen than on consoles or PC, but it’s still manageable and fun.

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iPhone Review: Mirror’s Edge

Posted on 19th Sep 2010 at 08:33 by Joe Martin with 1 comments

Joe Martin
I played and previewed Mirror’s Edge on the iPhone ages ago, but for some reason it was an iPad exclusive for ages after that. It’s only just been released on the iPhone recently and, interestingly, while the iPhone version is exactly the same as the iPad one, it also manages to be a better game. I’ve played Mirror’s Edge on both platforms and it’s the smaller of the two which is best.

It’s mainly because of the type of game that Mirror’s Edge is. Like Super Quick Hook it’s a fast-paced racer with exploration elements as you search for secrets and new paths through the levels. The levels are short and slick, flying by in a matter of minutes. It’s a game for filling train journeys, not for keeping your hands busy while you watch TV.

It’s an important and often glossed-over distinction, I think. The iPad is great good for laying on your lap and playing slow games that don’t require constant attention. The iPhone is useful for when you need something to fill the uncomfortable silence in a moving lift full of strangers. The iPad is for Scrabble; the iPhone for Hook Champ and Mirror’s Edge.

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iPhone Review: Civilisation Revolution

Posted on 5th Aug 2010 at 10:33 by Joe Martin with 21 comments

Joe Martin
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.

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iPhone Review: Doodle God

Posted on 2nd Aug 2010 at 12:06 by Joe Martin with 14 comments

Joe Martin
Doodle God shouldn’t really be a game. Viewed objectively it’s almost impossible to see why it would be any fun at all, in fact. And yet, it’s probably the most addictive thing I’ve played in the last months and I find myself getting it out at every available chance.

Doodle God casts you as the clueless creator of a brand new world and tasks you with filling said globe with items, which is accomplished by weaving together the basic elements. You start with the absolute minimum – Fire, Water, Earth and Air – and from there you move forward, creating Dragons, Zombies, Beetles and Vodka by adding things together.

It’s fast, easy going to begin with and the first few combinations are fairly logical – Fire plus Earth creates Lava, for example. As you go on though the combinations get more ludicrous and it becomes more difficult to think of new items and keep track of what you’ve tried already. Within a few moments you move from thinking “What is the point of this?” to spending every waking minute pondering what you can make next.

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iPhone Review: Helsing’s Fire

Posted on 27th Jul 2010 at 09:28 by Joe Martin with 2 comments

Joe Martin
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.

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iPhone Review: Predators

Posted on 9th Jul 2010 at 10:00 by Joe Martin with 8 comments

Joe Martin
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.

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