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Google Now Adds Card Functionality for 30+ Third-Party Apps

Posted by on Jan 30, 2015

Google Now gets expanded third-party app compatibility.

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Games

Natsu Runner Review

Posted by on Jan 30, 2015

Natsu Runner: Fire gonna spread.

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Productivity

Root Explorer Review

Posted by on Jan 12, 2015

Root Explorer brings some needed flair to Android File management.

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App Rundown

Natsu Runner Review

Posted by on Jan 30, 2015

Natsu Runner: Fire gonna spread.

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Recent Posts

Nickelodeon and Paramount Pictures Collaborate to Bring Movie-Inspired SpongeBob: Sponge on the Run to Android

Nickelodeon and Paramount Pictures Collaborate to Bring Movie-Inspired SpongeBob: Sponge on the Run to Android

Jan 23, 2015

If Bikini Bottom is where you’d go if you won the Super Bowl, this news is for you: SpongeBob: Sponge on the Run is out on Android!

The new game is based on the movie SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water! (due out on February 6th), and brings the best of SpongeBob, his cronies, rivals, and more to life on the mobile screen.

Play the brand-new SpongeBob: Sponge on the Run based on the new SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water!
SpongeBob and Plankton are in a race to find the lost Krabby Patty formula somewhere in Bikini Bottom, Apocalyptic Bikini Bottom and a real-world beach. When he’s not running, SpongeBob is flying, floating in a bubble, or has Plankton jumping around his surreal imagination. And when the running gets tough, the tough get heroic! SpongeBob becomes Super SpongeBob to knock through any obstacle in his way!
EXPERIENCE BIKINI BOTTOM
• Laugh at hilarious dialog between SpongeBob and his arch-rival Plankton
• Run through iconic locations including Bikini Bottom, Apocalyptic Bikini Bottom and out of water on a beach
• Customize SpongeBob with unique costumes
• Plankton helps SpongeBob with power-ups like shields and magnets
• Become Super SpongeBob and knock everything out of SpongeBob’s path!
UNEXPECTED TWISTS
• Drive the Patty Wagon!!!
• Adventure off the beaten path:
→ Float SpongeBob in a bubble through a coral forest
→ Jump Plankton through SpongeBob’s imagination
→ Plankton’s jetpack speeds past obstacles
• Run farther than your friends! Compare distance and scores after your run
• Custom animation and voice-overs with SpongeBob and Plankton created just for this game!

The game costs $3.99 (with additional optional in-app purchases) on the Play Store; we look forward to publishing our review shortly.

[Source: SpongeBob Movie Website]

Chrome Browser Update Brings Lollipop Enhancements and More

Chrome Browser Update Brings Lollipop Enhancements and More

Jan 23, 2015

Google’s Chrome Browser has an update rolling out, and it brings some key enhancements.

What’s New
• Easier site permission management
• Updates for Android 5.0 Lollipop
• Lots of bug fixes!

Chrome remains free on the Play Store.

[Source: Google Play Page]

King of Dragon Pass Makes is Way to Humble Bundle 10

King of Dragon Pass Makes is Way to Humble Bundle 10

Jan 22, 2015

Add this to the “awesome news” category…

HeroCraft’s King of Dragon Pass is now a part of Humble Bundle 10. This means that if one pays more than the average ($3.91 at the time of writing), one can get King of Dragon Pass and at least five more premium Android titles.

King of Dragon Pass is a mystical RPG; it is regularly priced $9.99 on the Play Store.

Some features of the game are:

- One of the Top 100 best mobile games of all time (Metacritic);
– Epic saga of conflict, mythology and community;
– Immensely replayable;
– Hand-painted artwork;
– Interactive story with an ultimate level of complexity.

Humble Bundle remains a phenomenal value that allows users to pay what they want to get select apps. The current promotion runs from now through February 1st, 2015.

A purchase link is provided below.

[Source: HeroCraft Press Release and Humble Bundle]

WWE Immortals Review

WWE Immortals Review

Jan 22, 2015

The fans of WWE can rejoice: they got a cool new fighting game, titled WWE Immortals. It gives all of the famous WWE characters even more crazy and unrealistic abilities and pits them against each other in teams by three. If this isn’t enough for you, then mind that they also get really violent finisher moves and exciting battlegrounds to fight in. If this also isn’t enough, then I know about WWE even less then I thought, sorry.

In all seriousness though, WWE Immortals is a surprisingly good game – at least when compared to the previous WWE titles that I got to play before. It looks and sounds great, almost comparable to the fighting games on the consoles. There’s also a ton of different characters to chose from – even though they’re not as different as they seem. More surprisingly, it does require some skill to win.

The player has a collection of cards that represent the fighters. Each fighter has a power level, and a health level that go up as the character gets experience from the fights. They also have three special moves, and a passive ability. The moves can be upgraded by spending some amount of gold, also earned through fights. The player needs to compose a team of three fighters from the ones available to him, challenge the AI opponent in the tournaments, or another players in online mode (although there were some server problems), WWE Immortals 3and beat them to get the experience and the gold. The fight mechanics are simple, but pretty interesting. The player taps the screen for short punches, swipes left or right for heavy ones, and taps with two fingers to block. The punches can also be stringed together into short combos. As the player hits, or gets hit, the energy bar charges up, and can be unleashed by tapping on one of the three abilities. Sometimes, the player needs to do some simple actions here and there to improve the damage output.

Overall, WWE Immortals has a unique and surprisingly potent fighting mechanic, that’s a bit too simple, but works for me. The main problem I see in it is that it’s free-to-play, so it has the same old crap, like the energy bar, and the grinding, and other stuff like that. If you’re okay with that, and you’re a fan of WWE, it’s a cool game, and a great way to kick the butt of a WWE fighter with your own two WWE fighters.

Google+ Update Brings Post Pinning, Low Bandwidth Mode and More

Google+ Update Brings Post Pinning, Low Bandwidth Mode and More

Jan 22, 2015

Google+ is geting a few new features by way of an update rolling out now.

The new build brings:

• Pin posts to the top of your profile or page
• Low bandwidth mode
• Performance improvements and bug fixes

The update is rolling out now; Google+ remains free on the Play Store.

Perishtronic Studios Releases Spinner: The Game

Perishtronic Studios Releases Spinner: The Game

Jan 22, 2015

Yep!

There’s a new game in town — called Spinner: The Game — and it’s here courtesy of Perishtronic Studios.

The game clearly has an arcade bent, and makes great use of colors and geometry.

Per the Google Play page:

Spinner: The Game is a techno arcade experience that will test your skills and overwhelm you with weeks of procrastination.
** Three endless levels with progressive difficulty.
** A vibrant soundtrack that imprints each of the levels with a unique atmosphere.
** Complete statistics of the progress
** Leaderboards
** More than 40 achievements
** Hours of entertainment

The game is available for free (with in app purchases) on the Play Store.

[Source: Perishtronic Press release and Google Play]

CES Award-Winning App uCIC Launches on Google Play

CES Award-Winning App uCIC Launches on Google Play

Jan 22, 2015

Snapwise has just launched uCIC, a location-based photo assistance app that generated plenty of positive feedback at CES.

Description
Location-based photo assistance offered by uCiC users in response to queries.
uCiC allows you to post requests of photographs you need, and other users can respond to you right away! Looking for real-time information about places, events and things that matter to you? Wouldn’t you love it if the information you’re looking for came directly to you, without having to hunt for it or filter through endless clutter?
With uCiC, you can find out what’s currently happening at any particular location worldwide while cutting through the noise and gaining direct access to real-time images posted by fellow uCiC users in response to your queries. There’s nothing like receiving timely assistance from ‘locals’!
————–Here’s how uCiC works: ————–
• Select a point of interest on the map
• View all the active users within the chosen radius anonymously
• Type in your request and it gets sent to all active users there as a push notification
• Users can choose to respond to the push notification by taking a pic and sending it back
• Earn Karma points for helping others with their photo requests
• Use the Karma points to create new requests
uCiC is a human network, a local guide of sorts, which facilitates the transparent sharing of queries and snaps, without swamping you with information you don’t require. So you receive precise visual answers to your questions, get to see only what you want to, and enjoy a relevant and focused experience. uCiC can help you make quick decisions, make comparisons and receive the latest information and updates, and learn more about whatever you want to.

UCIC is available for free on the Play Store.

[Source: Press Release and Google Play page]

Flockers Review

Flockers Review

Jan 22, 2015

Flockers is a puzzle game from the creators of the Worms series – although it doesn’t have much to do with Worms. What it does have a lot in common with, is Lemmings – an old game from the nineties, still as immersive today, as it was 25 years ago.

Flockers features a flock of sheep that wander through maddeningly dangerous levels, without a care in the world. They served as weapons of destruction in the Worms series, but now seem to try and find a fate different from exploding. The player’s task is to navigate them through the hellish landscapes and lead them to the exit pipe. The sheep don’t have a concept of self-preservation, and will happily get dismembered by the saws and splash to the bottom of any pit that they come across. The player can’t directly control them in any way, so he’s left with a number of “professions” that he can assign. These professions grant the sheep abilities that help them survive, or give some other abilities that help the rest of the flock – like an ability to jump really far, or to explode, destroying a nearby obstacle. The player needs to assign these professions correctly, and at the right time, guiding the flock around the levels. The levels get pretty tight, but thankfully, the time stops when the player is assigning the professions, so the player doesn’t have to tap frantically all over the screen.

Flockers 3There’s quite a lot of levels in Flockers, divided into worlds, each world ending with a “boss” of some kind. There are three stars that can be collected upon level completion. One for passing it, one for saving a certain number of sheep, and one for completing the level in a certain time limit. The better the player performs, the more wool he gets as a reward. Wool can be spent to purchase different skins for the flock, but doesn’t really have any different use.

Generally, Flockers is a great adaptation of a great game. Cool graphics, violent dismemberment (it’s disabled by default, so hop into the options to enable gore), and lots of varied levels mean the game has everything you would expect to see. I should note that it’s only for the fans of this kind of action puzzle genre. It can be too tedious for some, or too fast for others, but it’s damn good if you’re into this sort of thing.

WW2: Sandbox. Strategy&Tactics Gets Major Update, Adds Navy and More

WW2: Sandbox. Strategy&Tactics Gets Major Update, Adds Navy and More

Jan 22, 2015

HeroCraft’s strategy adventure WW2: Sandbox. Strategy&Tactics has just received a big update, and it packs a punch.

According to the press release, new features include:

1. We’ve added the Navy!
– New gameplay element: Addition of the naval branch of the armed forces has dramatically changed the nature of the conflict.
– More opportunities for defense, offensive action, and conquest.
– Take control of naval routes and landing operations.
– 4 types of ships:
++ Battleship – a veritable behemoth that bombards the coastline to weaken the enemy’s defenses.
++ Cruiser – a powerful multifunctional ship.
++ Submarine – perfect for hunting down the enemy fleet.
++ Destroyer – an affordable multi-purpose ship.
2. We’ve changed the Air Force balance, making air raids even more devastating!
3. By popular demand, we’ve removed the limit on new games and restarts. Play your favorite strategy without limits! Those of you who had unlocked unlimited new games will get 1000 bonus resources in this update (for Android version).

WW2: Sandbox. Strategy&Tactics remains free (with in-app purchases) on the Play Store.

Cards and Castles to Feature New Content Update at PAX South

Cards and Castles to Feature New Content Update at PAX South

Jan 21, 2015

Fans of collectible card strategy Cards and Castle will be glad to know that a new content update will be featured at PAX South this week.

From the press release:

Hot off the heels of the “Doorway to Madness” update—and after a very successful 2014—Cards and Castles developer Bit Mass will be featuring its latest content update, “The Ancient Hero Returns,” at PAX South later this week. Attendees will be able to chat with creator Matt Siegel and play the game on the show floor!

Cards and Castles, which launched on iOS and Android devices in April 2014, is the first title developed by indie studio Bit Mass. A novel approach to collectible card games (CCGs), Cards and Castles adds grid-based strategy gameplay and a number of formidable factions (Vikings, Crusaders, Warlocks, Pirates, or Ninjas) to keep things interesting. The game now boasts more than 400,000 downloads worldwide.

PAX South is the first iteration of the acclaimed gaming event in the southern end of the US. It is taking place in San Antonio, Texas, from January 23rd to 25th, 2015.

The trailer is below:

[Source: Bit Mass Press Release]

9 Elements: Action Fight Ball Review

9 Elements: Action Fight Ball Review

Jan 21, 2015

While it looks like a generic anime-styled garbage fills Google Play all the time, 9 Elements: Action Fight Ball is very distinct and fun. It combines two very different genres with a surprising simplicity, although I wouldn’t mind if it was a little more complex.

9 Elements: Action Fight Ball is an sports action game of sorts. A bunch of colorful characters play a very violent variation of volleyball, using magic and weapons to confuse and knock out the opponents. Each round, the player needs to score more points than the opponent while the timer counts to zero. If he wins, he gets some magic rocks that he can use to upgrade his character, or purchase a new one. The characters differ by their stats, as well as by the style of their attacks and super attacks, although the basic tricks remain the same for all of them.

The fighter can move around, dash, jump, hit the ball and use their ability if the ability gauge is full enough. The most interesting part is that the player can choose the direction of the ball when hitting it, trying to pass it around the opponent, as the ball moves around more or less according to physics. It also can move at high speeds, but the player has help in the form of a marker that shows where the ball is going to land, so it’s not just spastic running around and guessing where it will fly next. As I mentioned, 9 Elements 3the abilities, as overpowered and cool as they are, don’t really hurt the players, as they don’t have health or anything to lose. The worst that can happen – and it often does – is that the player misses a goal because he was knocked out or otherwise couldn’t deflect the ball.

The best part of 9 Elements: Action Fight Ball is that it is, for the most part, a game of skill. It does contain lots of upgrades and at first feels like it’s pay-to-win, but once you get a hold of the controls, it’s fairly simple to defeat 90% of the opponents. Not that it’s not challenging, but outside of the completely overpowered boss of the arcade mode, I defeated the AI enemies most of the time. There’s also a bunch of different modes, including multiplayer, to test your skills with.

Overall, it’s a cool little volleyball sim with a twist, and while it may not last you for a long time, I think it holds up just great.

Anuman Offers Price Discount on Select Games

Anuman Offers Price Discount on Select Games

Jan 21, 2015

Anuman Interactive is going big with some major game discounts for some titles on Google Play and Amazon Appstore.

The games (with embedded links) are:

Les Misérables : Cosette’s Fate on Google Play ($4.99 to $0.99)

Les Misérables : Cosette’s Fate on Amazon Appstore ($3.99 to $0.99)

Les Misérables : Jean Valjean on Google Play ($4.99 to $0.99)

Les Misérables : Jean Valjean on Amazon Appstore ($4.49 to $0.99)

The Princess case : Wedding Scandal in Monaco on Google Play from ($4.99 to $0.99)

The Princess case : Wedding Scandal in Monaco on Amazon Appstore ($4.49 to $0.99)

Missy Mila – Hidden Princess on Google Play ($2.99 to $0.99)

Missy Mila – Hidden Princess on Amazon Appstore ($2.99 to $0.99)

While mommy is at work on Google Play ($2.99 to $0.99)

While mommy is at work on Amazon Appstore ($2.99 to $0.99)

Little Hero : Super-Hero on Google Play ($2.99 to $0.99)

There isn’t any word on how long the sale will go, so grab these while they’re hot!

2-bit Cowboy Review

2-bit Cowboy Review

Jan 21, 2015

2-Bit Cowboy is a simple and enjoyable platformer. Or, it would be enjoyable if it didn’t lag like crazy on my tablet. The tablet in question handles Unreal Engine perfectly fine, and probably shouldn’t have any problems with a two-dimensional game with Gameboy graphics, but I’m gonna give 2-Bit Cowboy a benefit of the doubt – maybe it’s not a common problem. Still, there’s no way a game like this should freeze on a tablet every time there’s more than three moving objects on the screen. Anyway.

2-bit Cowboy plays a bit like Mega-Man, but with some additional features. The game consists of pretty spacious levels that are filled with bandits, aggressive critters, and gold. The player has to find an exit, shoot everything that looks at him funny, and not get himself killed in the process. The interesting part is that the player can collect the job offer posters that are scattered across the levels. They require the player to perform all sorts of stuff, but in general, the player needs to either kill a bunch of things, or collect a bunch of things. If he does that, and has the poster by the end of the level, he will be rewarded with some cash. The cash can be spent on outfitting the hero, or in the shops that the player runs across in the level.

The hero has a pretty impressive amount of abilities for a cowboy. He can do double-jumps, ride horses and bulls, wall-jump, and even swim. 2-Bit Cowboy has enough 2-bit Cowboy 2features to be a great game, but there are also some problems with it, beside the lagging. For one, the controls are quite uncomfortable. I frequently missed the arrow buttons, and sometimes the character started shooting uncontrollably. The graphics only look neat for the first couple of minutes and start blurring together afterwards – the original Gameboy isn’t really an example of great graphic design. Lastly, the game is a bit too hard. I wouldn’t mind it, but it’s quite frustrating to play a level for fifteen minutes, only to die instantly because you fell into a pit or shot the wrong barell.

Overall, I’m not sure about 2-Bit Cowboy. The game certainly has the right spirit, but it needs some serious patching. The flaws spoil the impression for me.

Crusader Quest Review

Crusader Quest Review

Jan 21, 2015

Crusaders Quest is an interesting RPG about inept goddesses and corrupted forests. With a neat visual style and bite sized gameplay is it worth your time?

Screenshot_2015-01-20-03-10-17Crusaders Quest features an interesting battle system that is quite unique. As the player’s party runs through the stage, they engage enemies automatically. At the bottom of the screen icons representing skills appear in a row at random. These skills range from extra hard hits, storms of arrows, defensive skills and healing abilities. Tapping a skill icon uses it, but waiting until three icons are together and taping uses them all for a much stronger effect. Skills have different ranges and hit patterns, so timing skill use, such as getting as many enemies in range of your archer’s AoE fire storm before using it is important.
Finishing levels awards experience which levels up characters, making them stronger. Once they level up far enough they can be promoted, which transforms them into the next evolution of that class and they become much tougher. New weapons can also be forged for party members and members can also be switched out to find the best combination of badassery.

Screenshot_2015-01-20-12-10-48Crusaders Quest is a lot of fun to play. Watching the party smack their way past hordes of goblins and triggering skills is fun and the great presentation helps the game along. There is plenty of amusing dialogue as well, although the story itself is a bit weak. There are a truckload of stages to do and each stage is only a minute or two long. This bite sized gameplay is perfect for mobile and makes the game difficult to put down. There is always something about to happen, like acquiring a new weapon or promotion.

Of course, the game does have some freemium elements. Both gems and packs of coins can be bought. Coins are used for a lot of things in game, like forging weapons and buying new ones. Jewels are mostly used to skip what few timers the game has. The main limiting resource is Honour. Honour is only gained by playing PvP or completing quests. It is needed to promote warriors and is slow to accrue. There is also an energy system. Despite this, there is plenty of gameplay in Crusader Quest and the game doesn’t hassle you to buy stuff like many other freemium games do.

Crusaders Quest looks nice. A pseudo 8bit style with SD characters gives the game a unique anime-like look. Combat looks quite nice to, with swords swinging and spells flying around. Enemies aren’t too interesting however. The game does feel like a retro RPG however, what with its generic goblins and slime monsters. The sound is well done as well. The soundtrack really suits the game well and the constant din of battle is addictive.

Crusaders Quest is a fun RPG-lite and its enjoyable battles and slick gameplay make it worth playing.

Looking to Watch the State of the Union Live? Check out YouTube.

Looking to Watch the State of the Union Live? Check out YouTube.

Jan 20, 2015

For those looking to dial in on the President’s annual State of the Union address, there is yet another online/mobile option: YouTube.

Starting at 9 PM ET tonight, folks with internet access can navigate to the White House YouTube Channel to access the address live. That means folks on Android devices with access to the YouTube app and/or YouTube.com can watch and listen President Obama give his remarks.

The White House Channel also serves as a public-facing interaction tool. It highlights life and work in the White House, with access to press briefings, weekly addresses, “raw video” and a whole lot more. It gives interested parties a view of presidential happenings, and even includes information from and about the first family.

There is also an interesting “Catching up with the Curator” series available.

The link (and actual video feed) is shown below. The Android YouTube app is available for free on Google Play.

[Source: AndroidCentral and White House Youtube Channel]

Toodledo Receives Update, Gets Enhancements to Habits Feature and More

Toodledo Receives Update, Gets Enhancements to Habits Feature and More

Jan 20, 2015

Toodledo is getting some update love; the latest build from the task management software (per the Google Play page) is as follows:

Enhancements to Habits:
* Habits updated to allow decimals to be entered.
* Left column of Habits section made a little bigger.
Bug fixes for
* no access_token given when Toodledo.com is offline,
* Outline/Habits crashes and
* remembering the last view by settings.

Toodledo remains free on the Play Store.