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: Granny Smith by Mediocre AB

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I really liked Medicore’s first game Sprinkle, and my son still plays Sprinkle Junior even though he’s already beaten it two or three times.  Still, I’m not a huge fan of games that employ ragdoll physics, and I was a little bit skeptical that I would enjoy this title.  I had no reason to be concerned.  The game is a blast, and every step of the way I’ve felt compelled to go back and collect three apples on levels where I missed that goal the first time around (which is most of them).  My only concern at this point is that I will finish this some day, and will the new levels be ready yet when that happens?



Review: Nightmares From The Deep: The Cursed Heart by G5 Entertainment

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I don’t recall when I got interested in hidden object games, but I think I was pretty much hooked from the first one I played.  They were challenging, yet unlike adventure games I didn’t have to worry about any gaps between play times because there was nothing for me to forget that would affect my progress in the game.  Eventually, though, it was nice to see hidden object games start to blend in more adventure game style elements, and now it seems like the line is often blurred between the genres.  Still, the concept was starting to get stagnant again… and then along came Nightmare From The Deep: Cursed Heart.  I could barely put this game down, and thankfully I have the collector’s edition which has an additional adventure now that I’ve completed the main tale.



Review: Feed The Penguin Premium by Avko Labs

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One thing that turns me off in press releases or iTunes descriptions is phrases like “no analog in the App Store” or “this game is unique”.  My problem with such wording is 99 percent of the time it isn’t true.  Just describe the game to me, and I’ll decide if I’ve ever played anything like it or not.  Besides, with more than 500,000 apps in the App Store, chances are even as a developer you don’t know if someone else has made a game like yours or not.  That had me a bit worried when it came to Feed The Penguin, but as it turns out the game is unique in my experience, at least when it comes to mechanics.  Add to that the fact that it’s both challenging and fun, and that pretty much spells “winner” in my book.



Review: Gluey by mobileAge

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When I first saw Gluey I was a bit concerned that it was going to be too much like another iOS game I really like called Globs.  Thankfully the two are not really similar at all, because now I don’t have to decide which one I like better – I can enjoy them both as the separate games they are.  Gluey is a lot of fun, and the dynamically flowing game board keeps the player on their toes.  I do think the game could stand a name change, though, as Gluey just doesn’t do the concept much justice.



Review: Toybox by Barrel of Donkeys

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Match 3 games have become quite popular on the App Store, and it seems like every week several new offerings are released in the genre.  Many developers have taken to releasing mash-ups, games which take the match 3 mechanic and combine it with some other genre in hopes of creating a unique playing experience.  Toybox is one such mash-up, fusing match 3 game play with a basic scrolling shooter.  The result is entertaining, challenging and somewhat frustrating – especially when you take into account that you are in effect playing two games at the same time.  Talk about a new perspective on multi-tasking.



Contest: Win an iPod Touch or iPad

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Who doesn't want the chance to win an iPod Touch or possibly even an iPad, right?  The Hermon Apps is ready to give you that opportunity, and you can even show off your knowledge of the world as well.  Download their quiz game Guess That Flag and beat it in expert mode to earn an entry in the contest. For all the information check out the web page: Guess That Flag on TheHermonApps.com.



Review: Flight! by Armor Games

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It amazes me how many budding engineers there were when I was growing up.  All those skilled kids that could take a piece of paper, shape it into something resembling a plane, and actually manage to fly it!  Personally, I wasn’t one of those kids. Thanks to Armor Games, however, I can be, at least on my iPod Touch.  There have been other games like this on the App Store, but this is the first one I’ve really latched on to.  I imagine it’s some combination of the quirky story, attainable and cool upgrades and the origami swans that give you bonus multipliers.



Review: Draw Breaker by Elevate Entertainment

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It used to be that I’d start every review about a brick breaker style game saying something about how I don’t really like the genre but… I think I need to stop doing that now.  Either I’ve become more selective in the ones that I try or they really do keep getting better, because I’m actually finding myself enjoying the concept more each time I write a review.  This time around the subject is Draw Breaker, the latest game from Elevate Entertainment, and this game is a blast!  It’s cute, creative and different than any brick breaker I’ve played in the past.



Review: NinjaBoy by 2 Ton Studios

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There was a day long before the mobile revolution when video game consoles reigned supreme, and many might have even said that computers were no good for anything other than causal games or low action fare like adventure games.  I did a lot of console gaming back in the 8 and 16 bit eras, and one thing that was common among many games was that they were hard.  It could be fair to say that some bordered on being impossible.  Ironically, that was part of what appealed to gamers back then.  The folks at 2 Ton Studios are clearly a product of that era as well, as evidenced by their premiere release Ninja Boy.  My feelings towards the game shift at any given moment from intense enjoyment to sheer frustration, but in the end I’m almost positive I don’t regret any of the time I’ve spent with it.



Review: Flying Princess by Aleph Games

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The cliché, of course, is that the knight in white shining armor rides in to save the damsel in distress and everyone lives happily ever after.  Flying Princess severely bucks that trend with a sniveling “hero”, an overly ambitious princess and a cannon!  Personally I think love might have drifted from being blind to teetering on the edge of insanity, but it makes for a great game, so who cares?



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