Hellfire takes you back to the cold war era, when the U.S.A. and U.S.S.R. were locked in an escalating race for military supremacy. The original Hellfire game for the Windows Mobile platform came out around 2004, and was dubbed Hellfire: Apache vs. Hind. The title is misleading—it makes it sound like an air-to-air combat game between two helicopters. It’s listed in the category of strategy games by the vendor, but most of the game involves direct combat between a helicopter you control and “bogies” controlled by the computer. (You choose to pilot either the Apache or Hind.) The original game was nicely executed and fun to play, and so is the newer version.
Recent App Reviews
Hour of Heroes begins with an awesome preview sequence of the game. When the scenes first rolled, I thought I was watching a movie. The game itself is not quite as vivid as the promo, but it’s close.
The animated actions and effects are smooth, and the shading is quite realistic. From plumes of smoke to an enemy being shot, the game graphics are simply amazing—the highest quality I have seen thus far on the iPhone or Touch. In addition, the sound is very realistic. You can hear your squad buddies and German Army units shouting amidst the crack of small arms fire and the rumble of armor and artillery.
Years ago, when I got my first PDA, I imagined a day when I could speak to any person on the planet using a personal language translator. Future Apps, Inc. has nearly fulfilled that dream with its series of iSpeak language translation references, including iSpeak Spanish shown here. The user still has to peck away on the onscreen keyboard to enter the word or phrase, but iSpeak will display the translation and “speak” it accurately. Translations work in either direction (English to Spanish or Spanish to English). The output is very accurate. This is a self-contained app.
This application is the first in a series from Atrium Strategies designed to prepare a person for the Project Management Institute’s Project Management Professional (PMP) or Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) exams. The program contains 150 electronic flashcards that can be clicked through or advanced by shaking the iPhone. PMP-iPrep can also use the iPhone 3G’s GPS to locate the closest Prometric Testing Center in your area. It also includes a timer that can be set to count down the number of days before the big test. The developer plans on releasing more certified exam prep references. This is a self-contained app.
I was never a frequent user of Craigslist until this application came along. CraigsHarvest makes navigating and finding Craigslist postings a snap. It allows you to quickly locate and save preferred searches, and it has an excellent query filter that gives you very specific results. I am still not a big fan of the Craigslist.com Web site because of its minimalist design and unintentional word clutter. But CraigsHarvest makes it much easier to search, which I now do almost every day. CraigsHarvest requires an Internet connection to do the search.
Since I discovered Quotationary, I’ve retired my copy of The Great Quotations by George Seldes. Whether you want to provoke thought, entertain, or inspire, Quotationary is a great resource. It allows you to quickly search for quotations by the author’s name, the subject discussed, or a specific phrase. You can also use the Trivia option to display random quotations. I did notice a few grammatical errors in the quotations. Also, I would have preferred that it included the date of the quotation. Otherwise, Quotationary is a useful portable reference program. The developer informed me that the next version of the program will “read” the quotation back to you.
A lot of facts, figures, and formulas are associated with chemistry, and even experts have to access a reference book now and then. This app not only gives you nearly instantaneous access to all the pertinent details about any element, it also lets you doublecheck manual calculations with its built-in calculator. The full Periodic Table is displayed in landscape view, as shown above. Unfortunately, selecting the correct element from this screen can be a little trying because the squares that represent them are tiny. Fortunately, elements can also be searched for by name, symbol, and atomic number.
HippoDict is an English/Chinese dictionary that lets you explore the Chinese language and the beauty of its symbols. My daughter and I spent an enjoyable evening together looking up various words and marveling at the characters that created the words. HippoDict includes a vast reference of symbols and a clean, attractive user interface. The Pinyin reference helps with the pronunciation, but even the slightest inflection can dramatically alter the meaning of a word. The program could be improved by including audio clips to help with pronunciation.
ExamBusters has been around for some time, offering study cards for a variety of subjects, in printed or electronic formats for Windows PCs. They have ported 25 of their popular CD-ROM-based products to the iPhone, including AA+ Geometry Study Cards shown here. The Study Card templates are nearly the same for each subject matter, and the interface is very easy to use. I did get annoyed after a while by the slow flipping of the cards. Still, these collections of inexpensive electronic flashcards are great as tutorials or a quick course refresher.