Theme Thursday: ICS for CM7

Theme Thursday: ICS for CM7

Nov 8, 2012

As with a few past Theme Thursdays we will be looking at themes for the most popular ROM for rooted Android phones and that is CyanogenMod. Most people who run CyanogenMod use it because they want something that their current phone does not give them, and for a majority of people that reason is Ice Cream Sandwich. Because phone carriers are so reluctant to upgrade even year old phones to Google’s newer OS, a good amount of these owners have looked to rooting in order to get their phones looking the way they want. I personally have a love/hate relationship with ICS; I enjoy everything right up to the icons. Ice Cream Sandwich’s thin lines and dark complexion are very attractive but I feel the bright and oversized icons to be out of place.

Well never mind what I think because I feel that I am probably in the minority here and the questionable icons have not stopped me from getting an ICS theme for my CM7. There are a few ICS themes for CM7, and I have tried a few but my favorite by far has to be the one by Sonny Sekhon, who has a large and impressive list of CyanogenMod themes. Like most themes there are not much performance tweaks and everything about the phone remains CM7 except it just looks better, and wow it does look better. The developer does a great job of making sure that everything here was themed correctly and after looking at my friend’s ICS phone I found it hard to tell many differences in the way the phones looked.

CyanogenMod 9 comes with its own proprietary launcher, Trebuchet, but CM7 still uses ADW Launcher to handle the home screen. Unfortunately, this app does not have a corresponding ADW Launcher theme but it does have one for LauncherPro. I find this kind of weird and I do not usually like having multiple launchers on my phone as I feel it bogs the home screen down for some reason, but ultimately it is not a deal breaker as the launcher skin looks great as well.

So anyone who has a rooted phone with CyanogenMod 7 I highly recommend looking into grabbing Sonny Sekhon’s Ice Cream Sandwich theme and give that “aging” phone a breath of life.

Burn the City Review

Burn the City Review

Oct 25, 2011

If you look at ask earlier review for Early Bird I mentioned the flood of Angry Bird clones. Burn This City could be labeled as one of those clones, and in some instances they are, but overall this app deserves to stand on its own. Coming from a small developer, this app is creative and the core gameplay is very solid but sometimes becomes too repetitive. Like most other games if its kind Burn the City’s variation comes in the form of different weapons and levels, but unfortunately the game requires you to hit these buildings multiple times in the same spots which can get old. Keeping things interesting are the clever level designs and a battle mode where your monster has to hold off waves of human military force. Battle mode is a great addition, even though sometimes the game reads your swipes to shoot as a swipe to pan the camera, which gets real frustrating.

Burn this City is a fun game to play. Its cute, colorful monster instantly earns your heart and his animations are will formed. However, the problems begin with the supposed human civilization. Apparently, our cities are a collection of the same five buildings and power plants randomly dispersed on cliffs and valleys. Not that I expect this game to be realistic, but some extra effort to give these cities more life would have gone a long way. The physics system is really accurate and buildings generally fall where they’re supposed to.

One complaint I have with the gameplay is that the camera follows your shot but doesn’t automatically return to the monster making you pan back manually or hit a small button. There is an option to turn this off but then the camera doesn’t follow the action at all. Also, unlike most games, there is not set number of turns per level; here a multiplier is earned if the level is completed under a few set amounts of time.

Overall, Burn the City does a lot good coming from such a small developer, and hopefully with a few updates and changes this game will be something special. But as it stands right now Burn the City does a few things to stand out from other games but I fear it might not be enough.