@angryjedi So I guess we’re gettin’ our punch on…
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@feenwager So that’s a thumbs up, it sounds like. You were a big fan of the original, if I recall…
In regards to iOS puzzlers, been really enjoying Megacity HD of late. So much so that I recommended it to @rocgaude and, thus, to the rest of you fellows. Just a tidy little block and modifier game, quite neat and lovely little soundtrack.
Anyone checked out Yesterday (iOS) yet? It’s a new adventure game from the folks that made Runaway. Looks right up @bluesforbuddha‘s alley.
@angryjedi The screenshots look interesting, but I learned my lesson from Tiny Tower, which I don’t consider to be a game at all, but rather a busywork generator.
Man, if they made some kind of full-blown Harvest Moon for iOS or something I might be down for that. There’s something that feels very empty about those F2P click-a-thons though.
@mjpilon I’m sure if you search “iOS” or something related you’ll find suggestion posts we made way back that should still apply. Currently I’m actually in the middle of a bunch of RPGs on my iPhone.
Hey all! A few quick thoughts as I finally recover from a crazy 6 day long strep which torn me to shreds:
- Only positive of being bedridden on Wednesday and Thursday? Having the chance to play probably around 8 hours of Fez. Got through the first 32 cubes without FAQs and actually figured out some of the game’s “language”. I have started my second playthrough and I’ll admit it…. I gave up on the alphabet after a few hours of trying and I looked up where to find the hint(s) for it. I completely MISSED it/them the 1st time so I would been running around for hours (which I don’t have) aimlessly. Figured it out and I am now working through everything without any more assistance. Just a wonderful experience and completely not what I expected in the end – Jeff Gerstmann ‘s “rant” about it on the last Bombcast sums up the whole thing nicely I think. Don’t think I will get as far as @bluesforbuddha or @gkokoris have but I will try as much as I can handle.
- @zegolf Welcome back! Regarding the board games, I have also started to delve into the area mostly through iOS versions but I have played some in actual board form. I would highly recommend Ticket to Ride and Catan. Great starter games that should peak your interest nicely. I wish I had more to recommend but none of my friends really my interest past Catan and I haven’t really found a board game group in the area to join with to try games like Pandemic or Arkham Horror :p Either way, enjoy the plunge!
- My fitocracy activity for our group will commence soon – my regular running up and down Mont Royal here in MTL will begin as soon as I am 100% from this damn sickness
Ravenmark on iOS is a great original TBS in the vein of RotKXII, combat-wise. Can be a little ball buster at times, too. Deep lore/codex if you want a lot of flavour with your TBS.
I’d also add Legion of the Damned to the list, but your mileage may vary with a sci-fi Cyberstorm-esque experience based around the single mission objective of capturing nodes. Has asynchronous multiplayer, too.
And I’ll just do my usual lonely pimping of Starbase Orion. Portable MoO2, async multi, cures what ails you.
EDIT: @zegolf I think a few of us know that feeling of rapidly decreased gaming time and, frankly, the yearning to commit so much time to it.
Board games? No.
Anyway, @bluesforbuddha, the closest thing I could get was UniWar, which is closer to Advance Wars but with a StarCraft aesthetic. Very similar turn-based strategy, but with platoons instead of individual units. I heard Hunters 2 was good. Otherwise the closest thing you git is, y’know, Final Fantasy Tactics itself. You DID know that was on iOS right?
But yeah, it sucks that we haven’t seen very many great, original turn-based strategy games on iOS.
In the spirit of iOS frivolity, I highly recommend Beat Hazard Ultra (I think it’s still free for the moment!) and the always fun but pedestrian-named Draw Something for asynchronous scribbling. @angryjedi and I have been passing scribbles back and forth for the last few days now. Good fun going for the score combo.
STOP PLAYING MASS EFFECT 3 AND TALK TO ME, YOU LOSERS
While I’m here, I thought I’d draw attention to a fun little free iOS game I discovered recently. Princess Pajama is a curious blend of action RPG, brawler and Plants vs. Zombies with levels that are over in a couple of minutes. It’s fun and free, check it out if you need something new to play on the toilet.
In other news, I will be checking out the Mass Effect iOS game for work this afternoon. Thoughts to follow.
@rocgaude Amen to that. Also, I await your response to my Hero Academy challenge. Decided to finally jump into that game – I need to find something to compete against you since Words with Friends isn’t going my way 😉
On a related iOS note, anyone have Ticket to Ride? Been curious about the new asynchronous multi option and would rather play with friends than strangers….
Finally, just got through all 5 threads of Katawa Shinjo so I am ready for the Squadcast experience. Pushing play as we speak 😀
@feenwager I just hate how Joe Shmoe’s weak-arse review score is thrown in with actual decent impressions and upsets this horrid aggregate apple cart. RockPaperShotgun, though PC-centric, has the best, with their round tables and the “Wot I Think” pieces.
How incredibly, tiresomely post-modern that we have to review the reviewer on some level, just to know where a game stands. For such an artistic enterprise, there seems to a fair few dolts calling the shots on the tail end.
EDIT: Here’s a creative little number that you can nab on iOS for free for the next day!
CODERUNNER™ – A real-world espionage adventure for your iPhone. Take to the streets, guided by GPS and the voice of your handler to real locations on an undercover mission of hacking, spying, sabotage and murder. Play it anywhere in the world!
After hearing @rampantbicycle and @beige went on a little bit of geocaching, this could very well be a great little addition to gamifying getting out and about. Again, from the website…
- Missions adapt to work anywhere on Earth.
- Find codes hidden around you.
- Solve puzzles created by players near you.
- Create secret dead drops for other players to find.
- Make up puzzles for agents to uncover and solve.
- Hunt enemies of the state!
- Hack wifi networks to steal intelligence files!
- Bug phones to monitor suspicious citizens!
Sounds like a hoot.
@feenwager Ghost Trick is $30 on the DS.
Honestly I’d love it if bigger, more involving games made it onto iOS, even if they cost a little bit more. Final Fantasy Tactics is $15, but you’re talking somewhere around 100 hours of content. When the PSP version was $20 it was considered a steal (I think it started out at $40). The price ceiling is probably the main thing keeping a lot of “big” developers from the iOS platform. It’s really wacking out the perceived value of a game.
@feenwager I’m all for paying a little extra for my iOS titles. I think the reason so much utter garbage exists on iOS without any repercussions is partly due to price, so there isn’t much in the way of consumer backlash against tepid software when the bar of entry is less than a cup of Joe. I want to support deeper, more involved titles on the platform because I find sifting through tripe and clones to gems an increasingly tiresome experience. That said, cheap experiments are more than welcome, but when they’re buffered on all sides by rehash, rework and outright IP theft, I can completely understand the stigma attached to iOS gaming.
It’s an uphill battle, though. People complain about prices because they’re used to one dollar cheapies, but the infuriating part is there is so much good stuff on iOS that, if it hasn’t already existed elsewhere, would be thrice the cost if it were on any other platform. Ravenmark is, what, seven bucks? That’d be thirty on DS. Starbase Orion is the same, but I’d happily pay twenty-odd for it on PC.
And yet, people still go wild over Canabalt clones and reskinned TD games.
Congrats to ol’ Pishu, too. So much for 2012 marking the end of it all! Going by a few Squaddies’ life events of late, ’tis only the beginning!
Ghost Trick hits iOS today, and if you buy the whole thing it’ll set you back $9.99. A wise man said that is a bit steep for an iOS game, which got me thinking:
What are you comfortable paying, and what do you expect from iOS (Android for you heathens) games for your money?
I got two more iOS games for everybody:
Super Crate Box – run n’ gun platformer VERY reminiscent of Super Meat Boy both in visuals as well as gameplay. I don’t know if it was made by the same people but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was. I hate virtual buttons and everything, but the controls in this game are just responsive enough to make them work.
Terra Noctis – 2D platformer with really good art, feels very inspired and polished. People have heavily compared it to Yoshi’s Island.
Both of these games are compatible with the iCade iPad attachment which I’ve been trying to acquire at a non-ridiculous price.
Flipboard might be the only social network app you need.
Xbox Live App
Amazon Price Check
Sword & Sworcery EP
Solitaire (has achievements)
Chu Chu Rocket
Final Fantasy Tactics
@beige Two fine gents have already set you right, but my little game suggestions are…
- Elder Sign: Omens – Great little Arkham Horror boardgame spin-off.
- Necronomicon Redux – single-player Lovecraftian card game.
- Reiner Knizia’s Samurai – Tight little digital boardgame of territory control with asynchronous multiplayer.
- Starbase Orion – pocket Masters of Orion 2. ’nuff said. Asynchronous multiplayer.
- Ravenmark: Scourge of Estellion – One of the finest army-based fantasy TBS games on the platform. Terrific game.
- Legion of the Damned – One of my favourites of the year, channelling those interesting sci-fi PC TBS titles of the 90s like Cyberstorm and Fallen Haven, LotD is just good fun. Asynchronous multiplayer, map editor, etc. etc. Thumbs up.
- Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer – Asynchronous multiplayer card drafting game, a Squad favourite!
I’ll leave it there.
@impynickers Probably Kojima’s “Ogre” project. Everything we’ve heard indicates a new IP.
@angryjedi Definitely. Basically, puzzles, strategy, adventure, anything menu-based and turn-based seems to be what works. I might accept virtual pads in the case of JRPGs like Chrono Trigger and old FF simply because movement is the only thing that’s in real-time, everything else being handled in menus.
But man, if Apple did put out some kind of bluetooth controller. Really though, I often think that the greatest handheld of all time would be an iPod Touch with a pad and buttons.
Sorry to tripe-post but Whatchabeenplayin! Part Two:
For some reason iOS gaming got a whole lot better for me in the past couple months. Undercroft continues to be a completely competent portable oldschool WRPG which honestly makes me feel shocked at the possibilities for the genre on this platform. I’m only in the woods outside of the first town but this certainly does not feel like a five-minute time waster. I can only imagine what The Quest offers for $8. If we can get this and Chrono Trigger on iOS then I don’t see why it can’t be looked at as a “real” platform.
On top of that I just recently found what looks like a slick Yasumi Matsuno homage – Rebirth of Fotrune. I know there already is an actual iOS version of Final Fantasy Tactics, but this at least looks like a nice alternative with beautiful art, supposedly 200 missions, and the option between a 99c and a free version.
But on the front of five-minute time wasters I was brought to the attention of SpellTower. I never got into Words With Friends or even Scrabble, but this looks like a cross between that, a crossword puzzle, and Tetris. One mode is like Word Tetris. The whole thing is in such a slick package too!
Hmmm. I guess the Elder Scrolls series could be seen as an evolution of classic first-person dungeon crawlers, but there’s quite a lot of differences — most notably in the game structure. While Skyrim is completely non-linear, Undercroft and its ilk are more linear. Sure, within the game’s areas there’s a degree of choice in the order you tackle quests, but there’s a clearly defined structure of progression. There’s also considerably less freedom in character development — characters are set classes with set skills, though the order in which you unlock those skills is up to you, which is nice.
I guess the main links are in terms of exploration — these games, in the “olden days” were all about sitting with a pad of graph paper, painstakingly mapping out the dungeon a square at a time, though Undercroft at least provides you with an automap to make use of, and has scenery that isn’t all the same. If you want a true challenge, try playing Phantasy Star I without making a map and you’ll quickly find yourself driven insane.
All that said, a portable Elder Scrolls game which used flick-screen navigation and turn-based combat would actually work very well — and arguably better than using a touchscreen full freedom first-person interface. I’d certainly play it.
Red, if you want to examine the genre further into its history, check out Dungeon Master and its sequel as well as the Eye of the Beholder series and Lands of Lore I. The latter two were developed by Westwood Studios, who went on to make Command & Conquer. The “Gold Box” D&D adventures are worth a look, too, if you can get your head around the idiosyncracies of 2nd edition AD&D (lower armor class is better, y’all!)
Okay, I know @angryjedi has at least played a bit of Undercroft on the iPhone (if you at least have a Mac, it’s probably free on the Mac app store). I don’t have time to go all off on it right now so I’ll just inquire a bit to you guys who are more experienced with this sub genre.
This and recent Fallouts games are the closest thing I’ve played to first person RPGs, and Undercroft seems to be exactly what these games were, and the interface seems to work pretty damn well on the iPhone. A big part of that though is being fully turn-based. I don’t know if the games of yore were as well.
Overall, a few minutes and this really does feel like what little I’ve played of Skyrim, just portable. It has me convinced that if they wanted to, Bethesda could make a sort of spin-off iOS version of Skyrim as long as people are okay with it looking like Daggerfall.
@redswir1 The interesting thing about Grimrock is that despite those pretty graphics, the gameplay is straight out of the ’80s and early ’90s. It’s a flick-screen dungeon crawler of the Dungeon Master/Eye of the Beholder ilk. I’m all for that — those games were great.
If you want a similar experience for free on iOS now — albeit with inferior graphics — check out Undercroft from Jagex.
If roguelikes are your bag, 100 Rogues and Sword of Fargoal are both excellent. 100 Rogues will kill you quickly, Fargoal will see you spending a lot of time with your character and getting supremely annoyed when you die — no reloads here.
For “proper” RPGs, the versions of FF1, 2, 3 and Tactics on iOS are all good, though expensive.
The Zenonia series is a good, deep series of action RPGs — I’ve only played the third one, but it was good stuff, despite occasionally dodgy touchscreen controls.
Chaos Rings and Chaos Rings Omega are supposed to be good, but being Square titles they’re expensive, again.
Aralon: Sword and Shadow and its predecessor Ravensword: The Fallen King are decent.
Pocket RPG was popular a few weeks back but I don’t know if it’s any good.
At least one of those should fit what you’re looking for. There’s the iOS version of Dungeon Defenders, too, though it’s very hard to switch to touch controls after using mouse and keyboard and/or controller on the PC version.
Sorry to break in here, but I was trying to find if there were any good choices for full-fledged RPGs on iOS and actually ran into several good looking suggestions, both of the “J” and “W” variety.
Most incredible of all though is the upcoming Legend of Grimlock:
Now I doubt this is the version that’s going to run on an iPad but you get the picture.
@redswir1 Yeah, good call on Mage Gauntlet! A quick and feisty little action-RPG hack-n-slash. Some might say the levels are relatively empty outside of the horde groups, but eh, the pace isn’t plodding and there’s room to breathe.
@bowlisimo I take it Dark Souls and the slew of PS3 titles (read: Uncharted 3) will prohibit an interest in Sword of the Stars 2? Being a Sins fan and all…
My android distractions are the following, Game Dev Story, Grand Prix Story, and Pocket League Story for all your management sim needs (games, cars and soccer respectively) I’ve also been playing Shadow Era which is a free online CCG (though the card list is still fairly small, so your mileage may vary)
Still, don’t have a lot in that area, I tend to carry my PSP instead so I guess I’m “anti-modern” that way?
So, as that I’m apparently completely unobservant I spent my time after killing the goat demon+two dogs boss wandering the world, I went down to darkroot (died to hydra several times, completely missed the Moonlight butterfly) poking at the first unkillable skeleton of the catacombs (no butterfly, no divine weapons) and generally being unproductive, finding not much else to do I started hiring out to people needing help against the goat’s double handed triple team, got myself lots of souls and 13 humanity, and about 20 some levels making me feel like king of the world~ then… a revelation..!
… I got summoned into a world where people had walked down the stairs to the right of the boss room which I’d never known was there even after camping the area with my summon sign out… whoops >_>
So, when I get back from the demon doom posse, I venture down there, zombies! No trouble. Zombies with fire! not, bad exactly… takes an estus maybe…. hey this goes down a fair ways, floor sign points me to a secret place behind the crates, neat! it gets me to…. a place with no anything… for anyone… surrounding a pit with a giant rat in it. Oh! This is a free ranged spot to kill this sub-boss. As a caster the rat problem quickly goes away and… huh, that’s odd… no stairs, just gotta fall I guess.
So I go down… loot some things, explore a little and… huh, a waterfall, I guess I’ll check this… WHOA! I slide down the side of it… ah, well, okay, no way back up at the moment, and *explore explore… jump some pits, fall down another…
At this point I’m thoroughly lost and buried, I keep falling down, and even when I find a stair upwards it seems to be followed quickly by another fall, literally an hour and a half later I’m getting really worried, the soul shots are low, but instead of my haphhazard wanderings I’ve got a plan… I’ve started killing the meat chunk things as ‘you’ve been here before’ markers, and shortly I do find a new area
… with a new enemy, Slimes
Now, we gotta cast waaaay back to D&D 2nd Edition, do you remember Green Slime? The slimes that converted you to green slime? The stuff that once it touched you the only answer was *amputation* or *fire?* I sure do, because as a kid that was the scariest damn monster in the book. So with 1:30 hours worth of souls and 25+ hours into the game I KNOW these guys have a trick, some nasty horrible thing that’s going to ruin my “no estus left” ass and teleport me back completely destroying any concept of the terrain or the *LOCATION OF MY SOULS AND MASSIVE HUMANITY STACK* that I may profess to have.
So I poke it, ever so carefully…
in retaliation it just kinda quivers and lurches, veeeeeerry slowly
Not so bad, I’m still terribly paranoid though. what could it be? it puffed itself up and lurched once, but it wasn’t an insta-death grab or anything like those trees in the Basin, just a normal blockable attack…
So I poke, and stab and very carefully fight it, slaying it without actually too much trouble.
Hey! no problem! I guess I was worried over nothing, so I poke around a bit more, go deeper into the room, fight another one…
And halfway through this fight slime drops off it’s concealment on the ceiling and COVERS my character head to foot.
“!@#$%^!@” comes out of my head, not swear words, but the Q-bert noise from the nintendo era, my eyes flick to my lifebar, having run out of estus it was at half mast if that, the slime continues to consume my character as I mash franticly, the slime I was fighting also lurches itself at my ensnared form, (though fortunately locked animations means invincibility! <3) 1/5,1/7th, 1/10th…!
It lets me go with a minuscule sliver of life
me and my character both gasp for air and beat a hasty retreat to an overhang I can see, having no way to recover life I stab the slimes very very carefully from a distance.
Leaving me alone
in the Depths
With literally zero life
Interestingly enough, the story of my survival after that has a large part to do with finding an evil (didn't care!) relic that allowed me to feed on the life force of rats, slime and other native creatures to extend my own unnatural existence!
So thank you Dark Souls, thanks for being enough of a bastard to MAKE me do that, because in any other game, I'd have just popped the cork on a megaelixer from The Great Stockpile and been totally fine. Here though? Here I was out of my head with worry enough that I didn't particularly care if the game was tracking it in some sort of morality way. (which, as far as I can tell, it didn't, everyone still seems to like me at least)
The former is what seems to be a straight-up hack n’ slash made in a deliberately 16-bit style. So far it’s been the only game where I will tolerate virtual analog stick controls because they got them to work really well here, and the game also runs at a solid 60. So far it’s been the closest thing to my Dark Souls away from Dark Souls.
I haven’t actually played Chateau de Moreau yet but from what I’ve seen it’s a straight-up puzzle/visual novel thing. It looks like 999 but set 100 years ago, with a lot more puzzles, and I think at least 40 endings.
@beige Squids is a marvellous little gem on iOS. Physics-based TBS with gorgeous art style, terrific character and enemy design and item customisation. Not deep-deep, but probably the salve one needs after wandering through nightmare fantasy land.
iOS gaming has really been terrific of late. Galaxy Pirate Adventure (needs a few more updates in the UI department, but it’s pretty much Infinite Space iOS), Ascension, Starbase Orion (AMAZING Masters of Orion-esque title with asynchronous multiplayer! Dreams DO come true!), Bike Baron (the level editor in Bike Baron is worth the price of admission alone), Distant Star received a nice update (think turn-based Galcon with 4X elements), Whale Trail (a trippy cetacean take on Tiny Wings), Bring Me Sandwiches!! (Katamari-esque collector platformer with great controls for a touch game), Steambirds: Survival (free Achtung! Spitfire)…lots of credible, legitimate titles to choose from.
Another World is now out on the App Store. Still ain’t played it, even after buying it on GOG.
@sinfony I’ll have to look into Downcast. I’ve used Podcaster and iCatcher, both of which left me wanting.
In regards to iOS gaming, the longer I use my phone, the less I want to play games on it. Aside from Ascension, all other games feel more like a chore then real fun. Despite the threat of a 3 hour battery life, I still think I want a PS Vita.
@bluesforbuddha And this is the part where I talk about the great iPhone games I’ve been playing recently.
Groove Coaster is probably the best gaming you’ll have this year for 99 cents. It’s more or mess a Miz game on iOS, and you can play it just fine with only one hand free.
Hard Lines is like Snake but with deathmatch. That kind of makes it a top-down light-cycle game.
Final Fantasy Tactics also comes out on iOS on Thursday but that’s going to be $15.
Easter weekend has prevented me from being home beating Portal 2. As a result I have had to dodge spoilers, and turn to mobile gaming solutions. This brings me to my big disappointment in I-OS 4, or anything post 3.113, mainly that my first generation I-pod touch has been deemed unfit for any modern OS updates. Now, I might have been willing to accept this if I understood the hardware as incapable of modern apps/games. The curiosity is the almost arbitrary line that is drawn, where I can play the very pretty Deadspace, or Battlefield IOS games, but Angry Birds and Superbrothers say they require a later OS and will not even give me the time of day. What the crap?
If this is Apples way of saying my I-pod touch is out of date, and they want to frustrate me into purchasing a new one.. forget it.
@unmanneddrone Fantastic point on the board games. With a little more advancement that’s a fantastic iOS specific experience you could have. One of the large knocks against board games is the time required to setup, organize and depending on the game, handle rule disputes. One of the large knocks on traditional portables is the likelihood in the west of people carrying the right device and game. With a ‘download cart’ feature like the DS that let any smartphone connect to the same game you could get a 4 person game of risk set up and running in a minute instead of 40. Arguments would be handled by the impartial 3rd party of the Machine Mother (points if you remember the reference.)
Now all that’s standing in our way is contracts, proprietary whatnot and copy protection 😐
I have no doubt iOS gaming will get there, it does need some time though. I can imagine a near future where iOS gaming resembles the PC games of the late 80s early 90s, Master of Magic, Quest for Glory and the like (Which, btw, should also be in a mission vote sometime or another, if not Master of Magic it’s spiritual successor Age of Wonders: Shadow magic would be good)
As for Dragon Age Legends, it is a fairly solid experience, definitely made by a more experienced team then the average lot, it can probably do that due to being tied to a major studio release. This is not exactly a common thing for such an experienced team to roll in there.
Also: If anyone wants +Bears rolling out and ruining other critters in Dragon Age, misc stuff from Everything or just feel vaguely inclined to do so, add me to your friends list
@Shingro: I don’t know if games were better or worse “back in the day”, but they were certainly different — in terms of ambitiousness and structure. So many games these days are designed with a DLC strategy in mind, for better or worse. In the case of narrative-led games, this disappoints me, as it makes me feel like I’m getting a half-baked product. That said, having been playing Dragon Age II for over 20 hours now, BioWare certainly seem to have done a good job of making it a satisfying experience without additional content — like Mass Effect 2, I’m guessing that the DLC in that case will be good quality but unessential to the “complete” experience. Still, I’d much rather be able to play all the content from day one.
It’s interesting that there appears to be a West/East divide on this. Final Fantasy XIII is a complete game. There is no open-endedness to it and it finishes pretty conclusively. I can’t see where they might have put in any DLC — except perhaps as post-game content, which they’re going to cover with a full-on sequel. I don’t have any problem with the direct follow-up sequel, incidentally — for all FFX-2’s flaws, I enjoyed it very much. Contrast this with Mass Effect 2, which is getting a sequel but also has just had its “final” (hah) piece of DLC released to directly link ME2 and 3, from the looks of things.
Certain games benefit from a modular nature. Racing games, for example. A good racing game offers a complete experience in itself, but then expands it through extra tracks, cars and the like. Fighting games, too, arguably benefit from the customisation available through DLC — though for them to announce DLC before the game is released is just obnoxious. And games like Castlevania HD benefit from “more of the same” — when the original game was only ten quid I don’t mind dropping a few more Microsoft Points on some extra levels for some variety.
@unmanneddrone: Board games on iOS are a good point. I’d love to see more of them — and more of them with a decent asynchronous multiplayer option, more to the point. Carcassonne is a shining example of how to Do It Correctly. It doesn’t have to be just board games, either — surely turn-based strategy games are ripe for asynchronous multiplayer.
On that note, has anyone played Dragon Age Legends on Facebook? It takes an interesting angle on the asynchronous play thing in that you can recruit your friends’ characters to join you in battle. Rather than just being a “resource” like they are in Mafia Wars, though, the characters you summon have the abilities and equipment your friends have given them, meaning it’s much more like playing an MMORPG, only without everyone having to be online at the same time. It’s also a surprisingly decent game, friendly to brief “I’m on the Internet and bored” play sessions that I’d encourage you to take a look at if you haven’t already. There’s gameplay and everything.
I have come full circle in regards to the iPhone and mobile gaming.
Having thought of it prior as nothing but Angry Birds and cutting particular lengths of rope, after exploring the realm a little I’ve come to the conclusion there’s the powerful yet unsung heft of iOS strategy genre that beats down the frankly tired idea that the platform features nothing but iTunes ‘shareware’-level cheapies.
Not to mention the migration of classic boardgame titles going digital – Neuroshima Hex, Carc, Reiner Knizia’s Samurai etc.
We’ve got some great titles in the pipeline, too. Distant Star – think a super-minimalist pixel 4X space conquest game. DemoCrytus – another stellar-looking 4X game. Star Command – the concept of Game Dev Story wrapped into a Star Trek-y skin and placed within a Weird Worlds universe of ship and crew development, discovery and adventure. Those are on my radar. You can also guarantee my enthusiasm for future Kairosoft titles that pop up on iOS.
I don’t see strategy gaming on my phone as ghetto gaming, or “trail mix” scroggin. More like an onigiri. Wholesome, tides you over. Quick to devour.
@redswirl agreed, I think the only way it really threatens mainstream gaming is by shining a harder light on shoddy work “Hey, this 30$ game is worse then that 3$ game I downloaded last night when The Searing was passing over Detroit”
@beige @angryjedi I don’t know how beige would take to iphone gaming. It’s very rare to see a game on iphone with a “hard mode” it seems, just doesn’t seem like the environment that sort of thing grows. First we gotta conquer the ‘default control scheme involves a 2 inch thumb on a 5 inch screen” thing. Definitely the realm of the creative right now, but the land needs more tending before I build a summer home there over the other portables.
I’m not sure how relevant it is, but randomly following the trail mix analogy I wondered how people gaming for the first time on Iphone had a different perspective. By the analogy they’ve been existing off of sustinance pills and have never ate before in truth. Trail mix is a brilliant melody of flavors to someone who has no frame of reference. In that context no wonder their thought on Angry Birds isn’t “WTF PHYSICS” and is instead “Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee~!”
Following that, Is that part of why as gamers get older many find games less compelling? In the trail mix analogy we’ve eaten dishes made by Iron Chefs all our lives, delicate feasts that are the best the medium has to offer. If you’re used to eating from a golden spoon a silver spoon is an affront, and trail mix unthinkable. Perhaps gamers (on average) become more hardened and dismissive with each good game that passes. Could a depressing game get you as hard and as solidly now that you’ve played Pathologic? If you’d never have played Pathologic, would something like Nier be more amazing? Beige/RampantBicycle’s thoughts having done Pathologic -> Nier would be well appreciated. Is there an analogue to a “disaffected audience” in other mediums? No one really wants the pressure of following a badass opening act, but in games since they’re amalgams of many different things, (setting+story+visuals+music+gameplay and so on,) perhaps they have an easier time slipping the “I’ve done this before and better” feeling?
Some thoughts that might have tangential relations: “Sequels are rarely as good as the original” “Games were more fun on SNES” “Back in MY day…”
I dunno wanted to post it before it sank under Python programing
@impynickers: You want “bigger” gaming experiences? Check out Aralon, Dungeon Defenders, Lara Croft and the thingywotsit, Infinity Blade, Wolfenstein 3D (yes!) and plenty of others. Not to mention Final Fantasy I, II and III, the upcoming Final Fantasy Tactics, Phantasy Star II, CAVE’s bullet-hell shooters and many, many others.
As far as puzzle games go, a lot of those quick-hit games are decent puzzlers. Angry Birds is technically a physics puzzler (though critics point out that the physics are beyond broken and there are much better Flash games out there) and Cut The Rope is supposed to be good, though I haven’t tried that one. There was one called Trainyard or something that everyone went crazy over a month or two back but that seems to have disappeared. Also, if you liked Chu-Chu Rocket, there’s a decent version for iOS including (laggy) multiplayer. Works OK on iPhone, probably better on the bigger screen of iPad though.
@beige: I’d urge you to explore iOS gaming if you get the opportunity. An iPod touch carries no additional charges (except buying apps/games, of course) so there’s no being screwed over by cellphone contracts. It’s not all Angry Birds et al, as I’ve outlined above. There are plenty of “proper” games available for the system—and way cheaper than DS games, too. Plus people are starting to figure out how to do touchscreen controls that aren’t shit, too. It’s been slow to happen, but we’re getting there. CAVE’s shooters feature the best touchscreen controls for an action game I’ve experienced.
@Shingro See, what all those “traditional gaming is dying” people don’t understand is that iOS games fill a completely different niche than what we play on say, the PS3. You’re exactly right in that almost all of them are just time-wasters for when we have nothing else to entertain us for five minutes. When we’re at home we have consoles, though I admit I’ll pop out my iPad whenever a new PS3 game needs to install.
@beige Oh hell no dog. I’ve seen you playing Puzzle Quest and Plants vs Zombies on Steam. You play iOS games for the same reason you play that shit. Hell, PVZ is one of the most popoular iOS games. Can’t you at least get yourself an iPod Touch, if for no other reason than to have PVZ on the go?
But even there, iOS games do have serious time competition with the rest of iOS. Whenever I turn on my iPhone now I could play some Angry Birds… or I could browse the internet, or watch a movie, or listen to the Squadcast, or read a book.
Sworcery is the first iOS game I’ve encountered that I will actually set aside time to play. It feels like a real, involving game I want to devote a few hours of my time to instead of a short distraction.
I still think iOS gaming might threaten dedicated handheld gaming for most Americans because most of us don’t sit on a train for four hours a day. Nintendo and Sony need to figure out ways to keep the 3DS and NGP in our bags at all times. Nintendo’s pedometer thing is a good start (anyone who’s used a Pokewalker knows this), but the thing needs to be able to fill everyday needs… or have games that I’ll want to have with me at all times.
@redswirl I can back Game Dev Story as being a decent piece of entertainment, good fun for half the price of a burger.
I dunno though, I kind of feel like I-gaming is kinda like survival tack or trail mix or the like. It’ll fill your belly if you have absolutely nothing else around, but you wouldn’t break it out at the dinner table. Game Dev Story as charming as it is, is no Simcity or Civilization. The cost in dollars isn’t as important to me as the cost in time.
After all, if I *could* be playing Dragon Age 2, or WoW, why would I spend that time on Pocket Legends?
Answer: because that’d be all I have.
That being said, go ahead and discuss the flavor of survival gaming. We all find ourselves in the gamer wilderness sometimes. =P
@RedSwirl If they keep giving you grief, Tiny URL those youtube links. Still, some are worth a goosey-gander. For me, I’m a fan of the following:
- Game Dev Story
- Hot Springs Story
- Air Tycoon 2
- Orions: Legend of Wizards
- Neuroshima Hex
- The Alpine Crawler series
- Reckless Racing
How is the squad feeling about Sword and Sorcery?
Howdy Gang! I mentioned this to Pete last night, but a fun little RPG fell across my lap last night that I thought a few of you with i-Devices might enjoy. It’s called “Battleheart.” It’s from the guys who created Zombieville USA and OMG Pirates! and is a neat little point-and-drag RPG. It’s about $3 and, so far, has sucked up about an hour of my time.
I’m also going to be picking up Bulletstorm. It’s intriguing, and the Giant Bomb guys gave it a pretty good nod so, as soon as I can find a Gamestop with one in stock, I’ll be grabbing it. If anyone wants to play the online co-op, just let me know.