Truthfully, I just sort of glanced over Penguin Break when it appeared in the New Releases list on the web site that I monitor daily. However, when the developer requested that a staff member of iPhone Life take a look at the game I figured “why not? It can’t hurt anything, right?” I’m actually glad I decided to take the developer up on his offer. Penguin Break takes the “ancient” concept that was introduced to me via that game Jawbreaker on one of my Pocket PC devices, throws in some cute penguins and a couple of neat power up twists, and actually manages to make a simple yet engaging game out of the whole thing. The big question is “who will break first, the penguins or you?”
If you've been paying close attention, as most developers do, to the App Store, you may have noticed some changes.
- New Releases only show BRAND NEW apps, i.e. version 1.0
- Updates are not included in the New Releases
This is potentially a good thing for users but there are some downsides.
The good news is, you won't have to search through old apps to find new gems. It might also discourage developers from submitting minor updates just to be featured on the New Releases page. That will also cut down on approval time as fewer apps need to be reviewed.
There have been quite a few major updates, announcements, releases lately, since my publishing my previous news catch-up article
slightly more than a month ago. Let me show you some of the most important ones.
(NOTE: I’ve already published some of these pieces of news in my all-in-one roundups and “bibles”. That is, if you do follow them (you should if you really want to know what’s happening on the iPhone scene), you already know of them. If you don’t but, in the future, would like to get notified of new releases / versions of a given application / game genre, don’t forget to subscribe to the given articles. It’s very easy.)
I’d say zombie games on the App Store were a dime a dozen, but that’s obviously not true since Apple won’t let you charge less than 99 cents a game. However, there are certainly a sizeable number of games in the App Store that feature zombies in some way, shape or form. So what does one do to make a zombie game that stands out from the crowd? One way would be to create a game like Zombie Dash. You won’t find any heavy artillery or mass destruction here. Instead, you must use your wits and some creative finger work to stay away from the zombies as long as possible. Thank goodness you can fuel up on mossburgers…
IMP: Surf the Music from Koolhaus Games is a fun game, and in fact I wish I had gotten around to reviewing it sooner. The graphics aren't super sophisticated, and the goal is simple sliding around a curving track, hitting objects called, "bits o funk" in time to backing music, but the game features some catchy tracks and good beat mixes, and I had a hard time putting it down. Read the rest of my mini-review after the break, or go check it out here.
If you've ever wanted to be a part of Deal Or No Deal you have three choices. First, try and get on the show. For most people, that probably won't happen. The second would be to play Deal Or No Deal: Around The World on your iPhone. The third would be to just sit in front of the TV and make comments while the show is playing, even though you know the people on the TV can't hear you (or at least I hope you know that). If your choice is between 2 and 3, I'd opt for choice number 3. You might be a little less disappointed.
I think augmented reality is so cool, with so many potential applications. Imagine pointing your camera at a tree and having text appear atop the image giving you information about what type it is. Or traveling in an unfamiliar city and as you point your camera at historical sites, text appears on the screen giving you background information. So Mosquitoes ($0.99) is a new augmented reality game — which must be one of the first. As you point the camera at your environment, you see mosquitoes in the picture.
Better yet, how to make traveling fun for yourself! I found Travel Games Ultimate Edition very fun, and I’m over 18 (just a little).
The app features five games: Rock, Paper, Scissors; Slug Bug; License Plates; Find it! Pictures; and Scavenger Hunt.
I’m not really quite sure who the target audience for this game is. With the whole “three little pigs” motif you’d almost think it was a kid’s game, but the atmosphere seems a bit violent. When you shoot the wolves with an arrow they bleed, and in the intro cartoon the pig comes off as kind of a gruff, mean protector. Not to mention the fact that this game gets tough rather quickly. That being said, it is a somewhat amusing game that will definitely keep you challenged. Did I mention it was tough?
I dedicate a brand new article to this news item as I have a lot of great news and I don’t want them not to be noticed when posted to the original article. (NOTE: I’ve posted at least one update a day to the original article in the last two weeks, announcing new games, videos, price drops etc.