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: Swingworm by 10tons

image

In general I'm a big fan of 10 tons and the games they release.  At first I wasn't quite sure if I was going to like Swingworm, because it just didn't seem to have the same polish as the other games I was used to from this company.  It turns out I was wrong about that for the most part.  Swingworm is actually a rather interesting game with a unique concept, cute artwork and a pleasing soundtrack.  Unfortunately it suffers from one significant flaw - terrible controls.  They haven't deterred me from playing the game yet, but they sure can make it frustrating.



Review: The Last Driver by Chillingo

image

Okay, I told you my “series” on infinite runners wouldn’t be coming out 5 days in a row.  In fact, this is part two and I think I’ve published 2 or 3 other reviews in between.  At any rate, this time around I’m taking a look at The Last Driver from Chillingo.  Apparently you are the last driver in a post-apocalyptic world filled with zombies, UFOs and dinosaurs.  Thankfully you have an upgradable vehicle that jumps and has weapons attached to it, so theoretically you’ll be okay.  In practice, though, that isn’t so much the case.  Still, it can be quite entertaining for those few moments you stay alive between menu screens.



Review: Gibbets 2 by HeroCraft

image

Back in the day HeroCraft was one of my favorite PocketPC / Palm game developers, so I’m happy to see that they are becoming active in the iOS market.  While they still haven’t ported one of my favorite games over to the platform yet they have definitely selected some interesting titles to release for the device, and Gibbets 2 is no exception.  This archery game has you freeing the poor sods that would otherwise be the victims of the hangman’s noose (yeah, apparently that same guy that likes to torture innocents because other people can’t guess words quickly enough).  You’ll have to skillfully wield a bow and arrow across more than fifty levels to help set the hanging men free.



Review: Saving Yello by dreamfab

image

If I had to speculate about what kind of twisted game the little girl from Finding Nemo might dream up to play with her fish, this would probably be it.  If you have any objections to animal cruelty, even if it’s only electronic, you might not appreciate this game.  Along the way poor Yello will get spiked, frozen, torched and all around beaten up, even though ultimately you’re “kindly” returning him to his bowl.  The rest of you that can deal with that should actually get a kick out of this game.  “Stretch and launch” physics games have become a dime a dozen on the App Store, but ones like Saving Yello still manage to make the genre fun.



Review: Tales From The Dragon Mountain: The Strix HD by G5 Entertainment

image

I know it's possible to have more than one really good game in a given genre but as far as hidden object games on the iPad are concerned The Cursed Heart has set an extremely high bar that's going to be hard to reach let alone beat. Tales From The Dragon Mountain doesn't even come close in that regards, and in a way it's unfortunate that I chose this one as my next hidden object game to play.  On the other hand, it actually does a couple things really well, and in the end manages to suck you in until the final battle with Strix.  You just have to look past a few things like aging graphics, relatively short play time and overly simple mini-games.



Review: Super Penguins by Supersolid Ltd.

image

I have a problem, and it’s called infinite runners for my iOS device.  I don’t recall which one I first latched on to, but especially since the dawn of the Temple Run style game I’ve gotten hooked on so many I could probably fill a couple home pages up with them.  To that end I’ve decided to take a week long look at the latest offerings in this genre.  Now that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get reviews for a week straight, but rather my next five entries will be related to this addictive style of game play.  The first entry in my series is Super Penguins, the premiere offering from newcomers Supersolid Ltd.  I have to say they’re off to a pretty good start.



Review: Granny Smith by Mediocre AB

image

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

image

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

image

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

image

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.



Syndicate content