iPhone Life magazine

Eric Pankoke has been a gamer for more than 20 years. He began with arcade games, moving to consoles and eventually handhelds and Pocket PCs. Now he spends most of his time on one of his iOS devices. Eric has written more than 700 gaming reviews, which have appeared on a number of gaming websites as well as several issues of both Smartphone & Pocket PC and iPhone Life magazines. He regularly contributes to iphonelife.com and TouchMyApps. Ultimately he hopes to eventually develop games himself for whatever the hot mobile device is when he finally gets moving.

Review: Aqua Pearls by G5 Entertainment

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There are certain genres that seem to remain fun even though each new game in the genre isn’t necessarily that different from the last.  Time management games are one such anomaly, and so to, it seems, are “marble poppers”.  Granted there have been some that weren’t quite as engaging as others, but there’s something about the whole concept of trying to whittle away a string of objects before it reaches its destination that’s simple yet challenging, and ultimately enjoyable.  Aqua Pearls is no exception to this rule, and what sets it apart from many of the others I’ve played are some new game modes as well as the general atmosphere of the game.



Review: Mystery Of The Crystal Portal by G5 Entertainment

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So far I’ve been pretty lucky with hidden object games on the iPhone.  Most of them have had something different to offer from all the others.  Of course I realize that’s because the genre hasn’t been oversaturated like certain other ones, but I’ll take it while I can get it.  Mystery Of The Crystal Portal is no exception to the rule.  In fact, in some ways this is one of the most original hidden object games I’ve played, iPhone or otherwise.  It’s not without its shortcomings, but its strengths keep me coming back for more.



Review: Mushroom Age by G5 Entertainment

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I had the opportunity to play the PC version of Mushroom Age briefly at one point, but I actually jumped into it in the middle of the game to pass a section for someone.  Now that I’ve had the chance to go back and play it from the beginning on my iPod Touch I’m finding that I really like the game.  The story is quirky and keeps you wondering.  The characters are amusing, especially when you get to talking to creatures you never thought you’d have a conversation with.  The actual meat of the game is a combination of hidden objects, puzzle solving and mini-games.  Overall it’s a well rounded package that delivers the goods quite well.



Review: Mani Golf by SoGoPlay Games

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Mani Golf is an interesting game.  Some might consider it an overly simple golf game with whacked out courses.  Personally, I look at it as a physics puzzle game under the guise of a whacked out golf game.  Whatever your perspective is, there’s no question that Mani Golf is fun, crazy and at times quite challenging.  You’ll not hear the word “fore” uttered from the main character’s mouth, but be prepared for some zany comments as you attempt to conquer 36 holes on two insane courses.



Review: Pig Shot by Nexx Studio

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Not too long ago I previewed this fun new casual game called Pig Shot.  Well, now it’s in the App Store for you to purchase so I thought I’d give it a more thorough review.  Of course, the irony is that the game is rather simple (hence the term “casual”), and I really kind of covered it all in my preview, at least in a nutshell.  Still, I’m sure I can find a few more words to say about it, so here’s my look at the game Pig Shot.



Review: Pigeon Squadron from I-Play

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I don’t go for the “farting is fun” application genre on my iPod Touch.  I think it’s silly and juvenile, and just further crowds the App Store so that good games don’t get noticed.  For that matter, I’m not big into the defecation appreciation games as a whole, but something about Pigeon Squadron intrigued me.  I’m not sure if it’s because at its heart Pigeon Squadron is really just another target bombing game where the weapon of choice happens to be bird feces, or what drew me in to wanting to try the game.  Well as it turns out, despite the fowl droppings premise, Pigeon Squadron is actually a rather entertaining game.  It’s also quite challenging, so don’t think you’re going to just coast through this defacing experience with a gold medal for no effort.  Are you ready to join the pigeon army?



Review: Buganoids by Backflip Studios

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This is the perfect example of how to do a freemium game right.  I'm not saying the game itself is perfect, but it is a lot of fun.  And, nothing pops up every five seconds asking you to pay to remove the ads.  In fact, the first time I played the game I thought the ad banner was just the top part of the framework.  I didn't actually realize it contained ads.  If you want to get rid of them you just go into the options, push a button, and confirm that you don't want any more ads.  In fact, this is only the second game I've ever felt compelled to purchase IAP from.  So enough about that, on to the game itself.



Preview: Pig Shot by Nexx Studio

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In the next couple of weeks Nexx Studio will hopefully be releasing Pig Shot, a great casual game for the iPhone / iPod Touch.  Here's a brief look at what you can expect...



Review: Gravity Runner by We Are Colin

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The promo email I received for this game touted that Gravity Runner was “Canabalt with Gravity Manipulation”.  In all honesty, I think that description does a disservice to the game.  The reality is that if this is to be considered just a “running game” like Canabalt, it’s one of the most complex running games I’ve played.  In some respects it feels more like it wants to be a platform game, but if that’s the case it’s a little bit on the lite end of things.  Whatever the case it’s an interesting, challenging and almost always fun game that will certainly give you a run for your money (see what I did there?)



Review: Bermuda Triangle Saving The Coral by Bulkypix

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It’s that time once again where I take a look at yet another match 3 game to recently enter the App Store market.  This time around we have Bermuda Triangle: Save The Coral, released by Bulkypix and developed by Northpole Studio.  Once you get past the whole PSA about the destruction of coral you’ll find that there’s a decent little match 3 game to be played here.  While probably not the strongest candidate on the App Store, it far outweighs the myriad of poor Bejeweled clones and decent but lacking non-Bejeweled matching games.  Let’s find out what it takes to save the coral.



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