Tag Archives: GameCenter

Wooords Review: Words With Friends, You Have been Dethroned

Word games on the App Store are far and plenty, with most of them much too generic to really make a splash.

Games such as Words With Friends, though, has largely been successful due to its social appeal, along with boasting of a “Scrabble for everyone” type of motto.

I’ve played a fair share of word games throughout the App Store, and quite honestly, the only game that I loved and still love is Words With Friends.  The others don’t have much of a lasting appeal, and many get old without achievements, stats, or brain-crunching gameplay.

Enter Wooords, a new word game that uses the idea of alphabet fridge magnets to create a game.  It’s not unique or original by any means, but the three gameplay modes and tons of achievements allow for quite a thrill ride.  One of the game modes — Challenge — also allows you to try and beat other people’s scores with a certain set of letters, going as long as you want to try and achieve the highest score.

While I would like to see some better word recognition and for it to work out some achievement bugs, Wooords is undoubtedly the cream of the crop of word games.

Likes

Artwork: The artwork looks very similar to No Monkeys’s Alphabetic, which was released a long, long time ago.  I love the art style, though, and it definitely brings back memories of those fridge magnets.

Content/Replay Value: There are around 30 different puzzles in the classic mode, all of which would take at least 5 hours to complete.  On top of that, the two additional gameplay modes add a ton of replay value to the game as a whole.  Add in a slew of GameCenter achievements, and you’re set to play this game for a good 8-10 hours total, depending on how much you really like the game.  For me personally, this is the only game I’ve been playing aside from the occasional Deadlock Online.

The “it” factor: In great games, there’s always that something I like to call the “it” factor; something that makes you come back to the game, but you can’t really describe it in words.  Wooords has that, and it keeps me coming back for more and more and more.  I don’t know why, other than the fact that it’s just plain fun.  You can sit there for a few hours at a time, or a few minutes while waiting at the doctor’s office.  It’s accessible, enjoyable, and best of all, it makes you think.  I love games like this, and Wooords executes almost everything to perfection.

Dislikes

Word recognition: The game does have some trouble recognizing words at times, and I have to move the letters back and forth for it to finally explode in stars and give me some points.  It’s not a huge deal and not a deal-breaker by any means, but it is noticeable.

I love Wooords.  This is a great game that everyone should play, and there’s really no reason for you not to.  Every once in a while a great game is released, and Wooords is just that diamond in the rough.  Do yourself a favor and pick it up: it’s universal, addictive, and exercises your brain.  What more could you ask for?

Wooords was developed by Stray Robot Games, and I played through version 1.1.1 on my iPhone 4 and iPad 2.  The price is $0.99.

Sid Meier’s Pirates for iPad Review: Ahoy Landlubbers, Ye be in for an Adventure

All the stereotypes associated with pirates—treasure, plunder, and swordfighting—are what makes the entire world of Sid Meier’s Pirates.

You start out with a small yet quick ship, ideal for plundering the larger ships if you know what you’re doing.  The game doesn’t seem to start out with any tutorial (although there is one accessible from the menu), so you’re pretty much on your own, learning all the nuances of being a pirate as you adventure out into the different colonies.

As for the point of the game, there really isn’t any.  But that’s not a bad thing; no, far from it.  The possibilities are nearly endless in a game such as this, allowing you to explore all around the colonies, plundering as many ships as possible, hiring tons of crew members, defeating other pirates; like I said, the possibilities are nearly endless.

You can also create a type of allegiance to the countries present — either England, France, Holland, or Spain — by fighting their enemies.  So for example, if you capture different Spanish ships, you’ll most likely be given a higher position (captain, major, colonel, etc.) by the French and the English, considering the fact that those two countries weren’t huge fans of the Spanish during that time.

All in all, it’s quite an exhilarating game that has very few flaws, if any, that I can see.

Likes

Adventure is out there: This game really brings out the adventurous, little child out in all of us, allowing us to pillage, burn, earn money, dance, etc.  There’s just so much to do in Sid Meier’s Pirates that you really can just do whatever you want.  It’s hard to really describe in mere words and letters, but Sid Meier’s Pirates is probably the most adventurous game on the App Store thus far.

Variety: Like I said, there’s just so much to do in this game, it’s ridiculous.  You can go from sword-fighting the captain of another ship to ball dancing with a governor’s daughter.  You can also hire more pirates, fence fencing masters, trade with the merchants… again, the possibilities are endless.

Difficulty: The difficulty level at Journeyman, for me personally, is absolutely perfect.  I haven’t tried out any other ones for fear of losing progress, but for beginners, the Journeyman difficulty is just perfect.

Dislikes

Some sounds: Some of the sound effects in the game get pretty irritating, such as the sound the game makes when tracking a Top 10 pirate.  The 10-or-so second sound loop when fighting another ship also gets a bit redundant.  Not major issues, but there are some sound effects in here that do become a bit tiring after a while.

Beginning: You have to be a little resilient in the beginning of the game given the fact that you know absolutely nothing.  You don’t know what the objective of the game is, you don’t know how to earn money, and you don’t really know how to play the game.  The tutorial does a mediocre job of teaching you how to play, and you really just have to learn through trial and error.  Not the ideal way to learn how to play a game, but after a while, you should be in full swing.

Crashes: Thankfully there is autosave included, but the game does crash every once in a while.  Buyer beware.

Sid Meier’s Pirates is absolutely stunning.  This stands as one of my all-time favorite games for the iPad, considering the fact that there’s so much to do and so little time.  Just do yourself a favor and purchase it now; I doubt that there will be any regrets for such a fantastic game.

Sid Meier’s Pirates was developed by 2K Games, and I played through version 1.0.4 on my iPad 2.  The price is $3.99.

 

Swords And Soldiers Review: Vikings, Aztecs, and Chinese; What More Could you Ask For?

Two Tribes’s all new castle defense game Swords and Soldiers comes into the App Store after being mysteriously shrouded in secrecy; from what I can remember, most of the pre-release information were teasers.

But after playing around with the final release, I can’t say I’m not happy.

With some great, cartoon artwork and an addictive gameplay, Swords and Soldiers should keep you busy for quite a while.

But one aspect of the game really keeps me from giving this a perfect score, and that’s the gameplay balancing.  While the beginning of the game is more or less pretty easy, as the levels progress, the difficulty becomes way too much for gamers such as myself to handle.

It has led to a sense of frustration at times, and if I didn’t want to review the game, I would have quit playing a long time ago.

The gameplay is great for a while, but when it gets difficult, it’s hard to stay happy.

Likes

Artwork: The cartoony artwork is very well done, and I have to commend Two Tribes’s artist(s) for this artistic marvel.  I am in love with the artwork, and again, props to the artists.

Attitude/Atmosphere: The whole atmosphere of Swords and Soldiers is somewhat ridiculous — in a good way — along with being just plain silly.  There’s enough serious in here though, so you won’t exactly be laughing your head off.  Still, it’s silly enough so that you’ll actually feel a lot more laid back playing this rather than a lot of other games out there.

Dislikes

Gameplay balancing: I somewhat ranted about this in the beginning, and this is really my only dislike for the game.  Everything else is great; this part of the game, though, really cripples a lot of the game experience.  It looks great, plays great for the first few levels, and it feels just so enlightening.  But once those difficult levels set in, there’s really nothing but frustration awaiting. 

Swords and Soldiers could just be the next best castle defense game on the App Store.  But the gameplay balancing really needs some tweaking as does some of the difficulty; with those fixed, I would be more than happy to slap a Must Have rating on Swords and Soldiers.  But still, it’s a solid game for those looking for something new to play.

Swords and Soldiers was developed by Two Tribes and published by Chillingo, and I played through version 1.0 on my iPhone 4.  The price is $2.99.

All of the Real Racing Games on Sale, Drive as Crazily as You Want for Less Money

The sheer sound of the name Real Racing gets me creating all types of images and words in my mind: awesome, realistic, graphically ground-breaking… the list can go on and on and on.

And if you haven’t been a part of this ground-breaking experience yet, Firemint has made it a little less of a pop to your wallet by putting its Real Racing games on a sale of up to 80%.

The original Real Racing is $0.99, the HD version is $1.99; Real Racing 2 is put at $4.99, and Real Racing 2 HD at $5.99.  In my personal opinion, if you have an iPad, I suggest just picking up Real Racing 2 HD, as it’s one of the most technologically-advanced game out so far, along with the fact that it will support the mirror display feature once iOS 5 is released.

And if you own an iPhone, you really cannot go wrong with Real Racing 2, although the original Real Racing is still quite a steal at $0.99.

And if you’re still not convinced, be sure to check out our reviews on the Real Racing titles.

 

‘Angry Birds’ Receives Yet Another Update, World Goes Wild

Angry Birds, by far the most popular game on the App Store, has received yet another substantial update in its new episode “Mine & Dine”.

With 15 more levels, the expansion pack also allows you to hit the hanging stalactites to pop the pesky animals as well, adding yet another dimension to the already diverse gameplay.

For only $0.99, this is obviously one of the best deals on the App Store, and if you haven’t picked it up yet, there’s really no reason not to.

The update is available for download on the App Store now.