Steel Avengers Tank MMO Closed Beta Opens Soon

Steel Avengers Tank MMO Closed Beta Opens Soon

Jun 30, 2014

KoramGame has announced that their upcoming tank-based MMO, Steel Avengers, will start its open beta on Tuesday, July 1st, in the US. That’s right, Americans – now you get to be part of a soft launch that other countries can’t get. First we’re competent at soccer, and now this!

This will be a closed beta, so access may be limited, but codes can be earned from the Steel Avengers Facebook page.

Blek Officially Available on Android for Google Play and Amazon Appstore

Blek Officially Available on Android for Google Play and Amazon Appstore

Jun 30, 2014

Blek, the critically-acclaimed and unfortunately oft-cloned puzzle game, is now on Android, for real. The game involves drawing paths which repeat themselves endlessly, requiring players to draw a path that winds up hitting all the necessary targets. It’s gorgeous and inventive, and now the original version of it is available now on Google Play and Amazon Appstore for $2.99.

Asphalt 8: Airborne Gets New Rides

Asphalt 8: Airborne Gets New Rides

Jun 30, 2014

Asphalt 4

Asphalt 8: Airborne, a free-to-play, great-looking driving simulator, has received yet another update which brings more cars in its arsenal. The new rides include Ferrari FF, Ford 2006 GT, Mercedes Benz CLK GTR AMG, and 2015 Ford Mustang. The game can be downloaded for free from here: Asphalt 8: Airborne on Google Play.

Upcoming Modern Combat 5: Blackout Will Feature SSAO Graphic Effects

Upcoming Modern Combat 5: Blackout Will Feature SSAO Graphic Effects

Jun 30, 2014

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SSAO, or Screen Space Ambient Occlusion, is a neat effect that gives the in-game shadows a realistic, blurry look. It seems that the developers are going all-in with the graphical effects in Modern Combat 5: Blackout, so make sure you have a modern device if you want to get a taste of what the game will have to offer. Other features include soft particles, underwater distort and caustics, real-time character shadows and many more. It’s not out yet, but you can get the previous title from here: Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour on Google Play.

FFFFF2P Is an Upcoming Free-To-Play Game, Set in a Free-To-Play World.

FFFFF2P Is an Upcoming Free-To-Play Game, Set in a Free-To-Play World.

Jun 30, 2014

FFFFF2P 3

FFFFF2P is a light-hearted parody of the current state of affairs in the oh-so-free ad-supported mobile game world. It’s a simple game, where the main hero has to jump on stuff for a while, get upgrades and power-ups, and then jump some more. It will be available on Google Play on July 10th, as a free-to-play game, of course.

Criminal Legacy Review

Criminal Legacy Review

Jun 30, 2014

Criminal Legacy plays a lot like Rage of The Immortals. Players build their own gang from the ground up, building a headquarters to craft and upgrade gear, generate cash and so on. There is a long, long list of single player missions to do and some amusing dialogue. Players work their way cross the map, taking over locations and working to track down Volkov, the man who put them in prison to begin with. Volkov sends text messages often during the game taunting the player and generally commenting on whatever your gang is doing, which is a nice touch.

Besides single player there is also a PvP arena where other player’s gangsters can be fought. Winning multiple fights in a row awards items.

Screenshot_2014-06-28-20-29-38A rather insidious mechanic to PvP however is that win streaks required to gain items are much higher than the player’s max energy. Ergo, the only way to gain higher level rewards is to either spend diamonds or play every minute or so over and over. Criminal Legacy would really like your money.

Gathering a gang is as easy as finishing single player stages. Completing certain ones awards new gang members. Each gang member has an element and they can only equip matching gears, which boost stats. The elemental system adds some much needed complexity to the game as building a team to counter enemy gang elements is important to success.

The actual combat in Criminal Legacy is automatic and pretty much identical to Rage of the Immortals. Combat is still pretty fun to watch; the character design is really nice, the animations are smooth and there’s plenty of gang bangers getting shot or sliced to bits. Each gear has a different weapon, so it’s fun to see what weapons your gangsters will acquire next.

Screenshot_2014-06-28-20-34-15Criminal Legacy, like most games of its type is full of loot. Winning battles awards sets of gear and items used to craft new items. Gears can be enhanced. This uses one gear to straighten another gear, much like the strengthening system seen in card battlers. Players can also combine two sets of gear into another random, but usually stronger one.

Criminal Legacy has a lot of freemium features. Players can spend diamonds to buy vaults full of high level gear and they can also be used to heal gangsters and restore PvP energy. Without spending diamonds gang members heal very slowly indeed, to the point where the player can really only do 1 or 2 high level battles an hour before their team has to rest. This is very frustrating.

Criminal Legacy looks pretty good. The game is 2d but very detailed and there is a nice variety of gears and enemies. The sound is decent enough as well. Combat sounds good, but the game has a critical lack of music. There are only a few tracks in the game and they aren’t very good.

Criminal Legacy is a decent freemium title and its plot and elemental system make it a little more interesting than the typical freemium battler.


Finder’s Keep Review

Finder’s Keep Review

Jun 30, 2014

Finder’s Keep is another dungeon crawling, monster bashing, loot fest in the vein of similar games. Will it loot your free time?

Finder’s Keep is, as hinted by its puntastic name a dungeon crawler. The player is thrust into a dungeon with lousy equipment and fights a series of increasingly disturbing monstrosities to gain power experience and loot in the shape of larger items to stab or avoid being stabbed with. The game uses a simple top-down view for dungeon exploration. The dungeon is shrouded in mist until the player explores it and stumbles upon treasure or combat.

Screenshot_2014-06-24-12-33-15Combat is a very simple affair. The player can unleash standard attacks, a far more powerful but less accurate attack called a haymaker or assume a defensive stance. The game tells the player what the monster is planning to do next and this introduces a modicum of strategy as the player has to react correctly to avoid being pummeled into paste, such as blocking when the monster winds up for a devastating attack. Monsters are often weak to a certain kind of damage, such as crushing and resistant to others so using the right weapon is important.

Unfortunately, Finder’s Keep critically lacks gameplay depth. While the game looks pretty, it just has no skill or interesting gameplay. The dungeons all look the same and are very short and mindless. There is never anything to do except fight monsters and occasionally combine one item with another. There is nothing wrong with simple games, but other simple but effective games like Faif have a gameplay hook and actually require more than dumb luck. Finder’s Keep does not.

Screenshot_2014-06-24-17-25-16Battles are exceedingly dull affairs which are based almost entirely on chance. If the player runs into a too tough monster, there is nothing to be done except to grind until better equipment is found. If the battle system causes the player to miss a lot, they’re dead. If the player fails to find a certain kind of weapon due to random chance and runs into a resistant monster there is nothing for it but to grind constantly until one is found. The gameplay never evolves and the limited size of the player’s inventory is a constant annoyance. A slight redeeming feature is the game’s sense of humor; there is some funny dialogue here and there.

Finders Keep doesn’t look that great either. Monster design is unimaginative, there are too many palette swaps and the creatures aren’t very interesting. There is some nice graphics for equipment however.

Finder’s Keep does have a little replay value due to the copious amount of loot to be had. Most trips to the dungeon will reward the player with new items so they can get just that little bit stronger. The gameplay never changes and the lack of even the slightest bit of strategy dooms the game to a short shelf life.

Finder’s Keep is perhaps worth a game or two and its dungeons are bite sized so it’s great for killing a few minutes.


Boom Beach Review

Boom Beach Review

Jun 30, 2014

Boom Beach has an interesting premise. The player, commanding an unnamed army seeks to liberate a beautiful archipelago from the evil Blackguard, an army that has occupied the area and is using the natives for slave labour and repressing them. Starting off with a tiny base on an island, the player must expand their base, train an army and take back the islands from the Blackguard, one chunk of dirt at a time.

Screenshot_2014-06-28-00-36-43Boom Beach plays a lot like Clash of Clans. The biggest difference is that it uses squads of troops rather than the single soldiers in CoC. This looks a lot more realistic and feels much more like fighting a war. Since Boom Beach takes places on a group of islands units appear on ambitious transports before they storm the beach front, Normandy style. This is a huge improvement on the way armies just pop into existence in similar games.

Unlike Clash of Clans, only one building can be built or upgraded at once both building and upgrading buildings take a long time. Even the most basic unit of troops takes 5 minutes to create and resource acquisition is even slower. It is hard to really play Boom Beach for more than a few minutes at a time.

Screenshot_2014-06-27-18-58-05Boom Beach’s combat is likely to be very familiar. Troops are largely independent once deployed, attacking enemies and buildings as they seem fit. For the first time in this style of game a flare can be used to order units where to move to. The units will either move to the flare’s position or attack the building the flare is over. This is very useful for getting troops to attack guard towers or other dangerous foes if they’re distracted with attacking less threatening targets.

However, Boom Beach is just not compelling. There are just too many limiting factors. Combat is quite dull because there is very limited unit variety and it lacks the unique, interesting forces that were available in Clash of Clans.

Boom Beach lacks any kind of guild or clan system, which makes the game as a whole feel pretty lonesome. There is just not a lot to do, expect tap on buildings and attack the AI.

At least Boom Beach looks very nice. The lush, tropical isles, white sandy beaches and turquoise water are a great change for the genre and units looks good and animate well. The sound is very good as well. Some great ambient music suits the isle atmosphere very well and sound effects get the job done. The game is overall very polished.

Boom Beach is not a great game, but it really could be. With faster progression, shorter timers and more community features, Boom Beach could be something special. As it is though there are better games of this type on Android.


Amazon’s Got Over 30 Free Paid Games for Free This Weekend

Amazon’s Got Over 30 Free Paid Games for Free This Weekend

Jun 27, 2014

Do you have the Amazon Appstore installed on your device? Well, you better, because Amazon’s giving away a motherlode of free apps this Friday and Saturday June 27th and 28th. The apps and games include:

Card Wars – Adventure Time
Sonic 2
The Room Two
Root Explorer
Plex

And more that I’ve not mentioned here for time’s sake. Click here to check out the Amazon free apps bundle page and go crazy with the sweet freebies this weekend.

Bounden Finally Dances on to Android Next Week

Bounden Finally Dances on to Android Next Week

Jun 27, 2014

Bounden‘s carefully-choreographed ballet dancing, played by having two players hold a phone and then following the directions given on it, is finally making its way to Android on July 3rd. The game came out in May, but ran into issues with Android device testing, because the game makes intense usage of sensors, which vary wildly between different hardware models. The issues have been largely ironed out, and now it’ll be possible to get your dance on, courtest of Game Oven Studios and the Dutch National Ballet. Watch me and Game Oven’s Adriaan de Jongh play the game at GDC:

Source: Joystiq

Glu Announces Support for Android TV with Current and Upcoming Games

Glu Announces Support for Android TV with Current and Upcoming Games

Jun 27, 2014

Glu Games are known for their console-style free-to-play titles, and now they’re going to support an actual TV console platform! Glu’s announced that Deer Hunter 2014 and Eternity Warriors 2 already are optimized for Google TV, and that future games will be optimized for the TV platform. Many of their games already support gamepads, so they should wind up being great fits for TV gaming.

Winning Kick Review

Winning Kick Review

Jun 27, 2014

Winning Kick feels good to play not only because it’s a bit of fun, but also because 50% of all proceeds from the game go to the Charity Ball, a organization that provides soccer balls to kids in developing countries. This is a great idea. Luckily, the game is enjoyable as well.

Screenshot_2014-06-25-09-42-17Winning Kick is simple yet effective. It is less a soccer game and more a game of timing. The game starts with one of the players with the ball. An arrow moves quickly back and forth. The idea is to tap to pass the ball when it is aimed at another player so they receive it. In this way the ball can be worked towards the goal player by player, avoiding the keeper as well. Once a goal is scored, the ball is given to a random defender and the cycle starts again with the goal to set the highest score.

Both the player’s team and their opponents walk around constantly, making it harder to aim If the ball is stolen by an opponent or doesn’t hit a teammate the game is over. A limited amount of retries can be used to continue where the player left off or they have to start all over again.

Screenshot_2014-06-25-09-30-15Winning Kick might seem overly simple but it’s a very pick up and play game and its presentation really give it some charm as well. Some sharp 8 bit style graphics lend the game a warm air and the sound consists of some great chip tune style music that, while an odd fit for football are catchy as anything. More music would be nice as what’s in the game is so fun to listen to. The other sound effects are limited to basic kicking sounds and the crowd cheering.

Winning Kick has in app purchases, but they are limited just to purchasing retries and golden balls which provide more powerful, faster shots. Neither of these are required to enjoy the game.

Winning Kick is a simple but fun game for killing few minutes. Players expecting an actual game of football will be sorely disappointed, but it makes for an enjoyable way to pass the time.