Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2
This is probably the best Tony Hawk title ever made. I'd enjoyed playing this title on a PC and a Game Boy Advance, so I thought I'd give it a try on the iPhone. This complete port of the game has better graphics than the original. Playing this really brings back memories—the nostalgia is almost unbearable.
The on-screen buttons can diminish the experience for some and can throw off casual players. If you're used to playing the PC or console version of the game, you'll need to spend some time mastering the new control system, but it is totally worth it. The game is challenging—you can play it for days without completing it. Old fans of this game will love the iPhone version. Young gamers should buy it to experience an enjoyable piece of gaming history.
Pro Evolution Soccer 2010
Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 is as good as it gets (at least until FIFA 11 arrives in the App Store). Konami has delivered one of the most enjoyable soccer games I have ever played on a handheld device. Its superb graphics and brilliant recreation of reality puts Pro Evolution Soccer a small step ahead of other iPhone soccer games—for the moment.
The game has a number of different modes, including UEFA Champion's League, UEFA Europa League and other international competitions. You can play with a variety of national and international teams, and the best European teams in the EUFA. The controls can be a little slow to react to your touch, and you may have to adjust how you play to deal with this—it really isn't a big deal.
Not much separates the quality of the soccer titles on the App Store. However, the refinements found in Pro Evolution Soccer 2010 place it on the top of the pile.
Best Sports Game
Madden NFL 11
$6.99, app2.me/481; free version also available
Electronic Arts' Madden NFL 10 is the best sports game by far. No other app in this category utilizes the touch screen as well—it almost seems like the game was designed for the iPhone first and ported to other consoles instead of the other way around. Madden looks stunning, even on older iPhones without the Retina Display. You can play through a complete NFL season with your favorite team and even purchase an updated roster via downloadable content available at the in-game store.
Hundreds of plays, realistic physics, and the ability to spin your way out of trouble are just a few of the features that make Madden 11 the best sport game. And with the impending release of Madden NFL 10, which is expected to have a new game flow feature, this app should remain at the top of the Sports App category for another year. (Note: Madden NFL fans will also appreciate Electronic Arts' NCAA Football: $6.99, app2.me/2603).