American Idol Shines in Latest Update to Hit Mobile Game Band Stars

American Idol Shines in Latest Update to Hit Mobile Game Band Stars

Feb 10, 2015

The highly popular game Band Stars has just been updated to celebrate Season XIV of AMERICAN IDOL. Players can now take fictional characters inspired by the hit TV show’s budding superstars on a musical mission to form the world’s hottest band with the biggest songs.

Included in the update are six new characters based on contestants in American Idol, although Halfbrick does not mention what contestants the new characters are based on. 16 new challenges have been added to the game as well which task players with such varied activities as recording themed songs or completing vocal solos. Download Band Stars today to check out all the new content!

Halfbrick’s Fish Out of Water Swims on to Android

Halfbrick’s Fish Out of Water Swims on to Android

Jul 11, 2014

Good news for Android-owning Halfbrick fans: their 2013 game Fish Out of Water has at last swam on to Android. This is not an endless runner: the goal is to launch fish across the ocean, with each fish behaving differently through the air, and with the water. The goal is to get three fish to perform as best as possible, getting as high a score as possible from the judges. The game is available as a free download.

Colossatron: Massive World Threat Review

Colossatron: Massive World Threat Review

Dec 30, 2013

Colossatron: Massive World Threat is all about controlling a giant, space faring robot creature, bristling with guns as he destroys everything in sight. How could it not be awesome?

Screenshot_2013-12-22-17-34-39Colossatron crash lands at a new city every level, which must be completely levelled to win the game. As he thunders around, smashing down buildings and causing havoc, the military responds with legions of tanks and choppers, dropships full of infantry and bombers. Most cities also have a boss of sorts like a massive, tough to kill plane or tank at the end. When a city is destroyed money is earned that can be used to upgrade or repair Colossatron. Premium currency can be picked up during games as well, which can be used to upgrade amour and unlock new weapons.

While Colossatron:MWT may look like an action game and in some ways it is, the crux of the game is more akin to puzzle games. As Colossatron rampages thought the city, different coloured pieces of his body float in from the sides of the screen at random. Each colour is a different weapon and they are dragged and dropped onto Colossatron. The idea is to drag pieces so they are in groups of three on Colossatron. When three pieces are arranged, they merge into one more powerful weapon. Some pieces will change colour when they are placed alongside others, such as blue and red which make purple. This is the only way to create some weapons.

Screenshot_2013-12-22-18-11-59Weapons are very satisfying in Colossatron:MWT and range from missiles to lasers and railguns and even flamethrowers. When Colossatron has a lot of weapons it’s easy to just gawk at the sheer number of bullets and lasers on screen as he slices his way through entire tank battalions in seconds. Soon into the game the player gains the ability to focus Colossatron’s fire and it is great fun to drag the crosshair over a massive squadron of bombers and watch them get torn into bits by Colossatron’s arsenal.

Colossatron:MWT is great to look at. Colossatron himself is very well detailed and very colourful. The weapon effects are amazing and there are literal hailstorms of bullets and tons of great looking laser and flame effects. The armies Colossatron fights look good too and their sharp, 2D style makes it easy to quickly see what is where and where the threats are.

The sound is extremely well done as well. The beefy weapon sound effects really make them feel powerful and the energetic music and fun voice acting really make the game sound special. Colossatron’s presentation sets a great backdrop to the action. Presented as a pseudo news report of the destruction, there are some amusing characters, like General Mustache that give the game a bit of flair.

Colossatron: Massive World Threat is a fantastic game. Its very fun to play, features a robotic snake destroying entire armies with a barrage of weapons and is truly unique. Play it today!

Prepare to Destroy Humanity with the Upcoming Colossatron: Massive World Threat

Prepare to Destroy Humanity with the Upcoming Colossatron: Massive World Threat

Dec 11, 2013

Get ready to destroy everything with Halfbrick’s Colossatron: Massive World Threat. This action game puts players in control of the eponymous destroyer of worlds, assembling color-coded pieces of the robot in order to upgrade its weaponry and to wreak more havoc on the humans and their defenses who had the gall to be in the way. The game will be available December 19th on Android, launching simultaneously with the iOS version. Get ready to destroy humanity!

Colossatron: Massive World Threat Has Players Creating Havoc Across The World

Colossatron: Massive World Threat Has Players Creating Havoc Across The World

Jul 23, 2013

A humongous robotic snake has crash landed on Earth and has no other goal but to cause massive destruction and chaos! This is the part where I usually say it’s up to us to stop this snake, right? WRONG!

Colossatron: Massive World Threat, developed by Halfbrick, has players taking the role of the robo-snake to cause as much damage as possible, racking up a higher score with every piece of destruction. We’ll have to watch out General Moustache and his army though, because they won’t let us slither around without a challenge! Check out the action-packed trailer below!

Jetpack Joyride Review

Jetpack Joyride Review

Aug 21, 2012

Well, it finally happened: Jetpack Joyride finally has made the jump to Android from iOS, about a year after its initial release. The game might be one of the most influential titles in the past year along with Temple Run as far as its gameplay and business model goes: earning coins and completing missions for upgrades is something seen in countless other titles hoping for similar success. So it’s kind of a surprise that it’s taken this long.

Though, it’s also a surprise that this happened. I spoke with Halfbrick at GDC, and back then, the word was that an Android version was not in the works. Things have clearly changed, as the game has launched on the Amazon Appstore.

The goal of the game is the same as it was on iOS: players control Age of Zombies protagonist Barry Steakfries as he rides a jetpack propelled by bullets through dangerous corridors full of lasers and missiles. Along the way, he can pick up coins, tokens for the end-game slot machine, and special vehicles to ride, such as a giant robot dragon and the “Profit Bird” which drops dollars bills as it flies upward. Players just tap on the screen to fly upward, that’s it. The coins can be put toward cosmetic upgrades, consumable items, or gadgets that modify the game experience.

Jetpack Joyride’s core simplicity is part of why it’s so fun. Even a year later, it’s so easy to pick up and play again and again. It never really loses sight of the idea that it’s about the high score quest, rather than collecting coins to unlock things. The gadgets, because they were a late addition to the game (though they are welcome here as the game is feature-identical to the iOS version), only really tweak the experience, instead of serving as necessary things to unlock. It’s possible to just keep playing the game without worrying about the coins and unlocks at all, though when there’s such cool costumes, jetpacks, and even a helpful robot dog to unlock, it’s hard not to care.

One thing does bug me about Jetpack Joyride after having gone through hundreds, if not thousands, of play sessions: the game becomes practically impossible at high speeds. At least, it becomes difficult to play skillfully because there’s just no time to react to oncoming hazards. So, after a while, it just feels like luck of the draw.

Still, there’s a reason why Jetpack Joyride was so anticipated: the game is still so fun beyond its flaws. It’s still definitely worth the free download from Amazon Appstore, though it isn’t yet on Google Play. Ride the dragon!

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots Review

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots Review

Dec 28, 2011

Note: As of publication, the game is only available from the Amazon Appstore – click here to download it.

Halfbrick’s Fruit Ninja has surprisingly, up until recently, only largely been contained to the single version of the game, while Angry Birds explores various holidays and even Cut the Rope has launched a second SKU. That is until now, with Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots. The game comes with 2 modes, Desperado and Bandito. Desperado is the same classic Fruit Ninja mode: fruit is tossed up in the air, and the player must slash the fruits without letting any of them hit the ground, and without hitting any of the bombs that are tossed up as well. The Bandito mode is the new mode, and the reason to come check this out. It’s a collection of set pieces with the same rules, where certain numbers of fruit must be sliced before time runs out. Players get 3 lives, and must make their way through 13 levels without running out.

Bandito mode successfully accomplishes what Angry Birds Rio and Cut the Rope Experiments could not – actually change up the original gameplay in a meaningful way. The new challenges are fun, different, and they provide a great justification for playing this game beyond “oh look, more levels. Hooray.” that the aforementioned franchises offered. It’s still Fruit Ninja, but it’s different enough to justify checking out.

The complaints come largely from technical issues. The game crashed frequently on my Samsung Captivate – it works a lot better on the Motorola Xoom, though there are some framerate issues when not running in “Zoom to fill screen” mode. As well, that achievement pop up is rather large and does get in the way of the Desperado mode. As well, the stretching from the iPhone and iPod touch’s 3:2 display ratio is still mildly noticeable; I understand compromises have to be made for wider screens, but I much prefer letterboxing to stretching.

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots is a great expansion for the franchise; it expands on the original gameplay, uses its license in a non-obtrusive way, and is a great use of 99 cents for fans of the game.

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots Now Available on Amazon Appstore; Free on Launch Day

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots Now Available on Amazon Appstore; Free on Launch Day

Dec 27, 2011

Fruit Ninja: Puss in Boots has finally made its way to the Amazon Appstore. Announced back in November, the game’s release was summarily delayed for unknown reasons. However, the game has finally been released on the Amazon Appstore, and is free today, December 27th. This is the second major title to go free on the Amazon Appstore, after yesterday’s free full version of Where’s My Water. The game features two game modes: the classic Fruit Ninja mode where players try not to let fruit fall off the screen, or to slice bombs. As well, there’s a new Bandito mode where players try to complete missions without hitting any bombs. It’s an interesting new twist on the traditional Fruit Ninja gameplay. The delay could be in part as a campaign for new Kindle Fire owners who just got one from Santa; Amazon may be wanting people to check out the Amazon Appstore either on the Kindle Fire on on many other devices to help draw more eyes to the store. The game is available now on the Amazon Appstore; no word on when or if it will be on the Amazon Market.

Fruit Ninja Goes Free to Play with New Ad-Supported Version

Fruit Ninja Goes Free to Play with New Ad-Supported Version

Jul 21, 2011

Fruit Ninja has been a rare example of not only a paid app that has been a mammoth success on Android, but an iOS port that maintained the paid app model in the transition to Android, without even a free version available. That has changed as of today, with Fruit Ninja Free. This is an ad-supported version of the game, featuring ads after play sessions. As well, there is a link to rewards program Beintoo, that likely is helping generate revenue for this free game. All the modes and features of the full version are present here. Fruit Ninja Free also includes additional language support, as well as some performance tweaks to make the game run better on more devices. Halfbrick have largely stayed away from free to play on Android continuing to distribute apps as paid apps, but because Fruit Ninja has cross-platform popularity, a free version makes plenty of sense. Fruit Ninja Free is now available from the Android Market.

PAX East 2011 Rundown

PAX East 2011 Rundown

Mar 13, 2011

Greetings from Boston! I’m here attending the Eastern Penny Arcade Expo on the lookout for new and upcoming Android games. The good news is, I might have found a few.

I had some hands-on time with Serious Sam: Kamikaze Attack from Be-Rad Entertainment. Be-Rad Entertainment is known for the iOS game Lame Castle and were asked to work on a Serious Sam game by publisher Devolver Digital.

Serious Sam: Kamikaze Attack features an interesting twist: Rather than playing as the series’ hero, Serious Sam, you play as one of the screaming, headless, kamikaze bombers. (Yes, screaming, despite being headless.) Kamikaze Attack is an auto-runner style of game where you jump and kick incoming bombs and rockets in attempt to take down Sam, himself.

I talked with the developer, Bradley Johnson, who told me that the game, developed using Unity, is coming to Android. We also discussed new modes of play and the inclusion of OpenFeint.

I really enjoyed playing Serious Sam: Kamikaze Attack and will be following its development to keep you all updated.

Another game I looked at is Machine Gun Jetpack from Halfbrick.

Halfbrick are known for Fruit Ninja on Android, as well as their other outings for iOS devices and Raskulls for Xbox Live Arcade.

Machine Gun Jetpack features Barry Steakfries in another adventure. This time, in an auto-runner style game with a machine gun that functions like a jetpack. The longer you touch the screen, the higher Barry will go.

You’ll have to dodge obstacles, take out enemies and collect coins to spend on in-game items like top-hats, double-shields and more! You’ll also come across vehicle pick-ups such as a gravity suit, a giant mech suit and the “Crazy Freaking Teleporter.”

The gameplay is simple and easy to learn, but offers plenty of extras to keep it different from similar games in the same genre.

I spoke with Phil Larsen, Marketing Director for Halfbrick, about the possibility of Machine Gun Jetpack also coming to Android. He told me that, currently, their focus is on getting the game running properly on iOS before they can get to porting it. Still, a slim chance is better than no chance at all.

While the presence of Android is barely felt here at Penny Arcade Expo, keep in mind that iOS games are almost just as rare. Things can only get better, however, especially as Android devices continue to grow in popularity. As for me, it’s only Day 2 here at PAX, and I have plenty more games to see.

Fruit Ninja Arcade Mode Coming Soon?

Fruit Ninja Arcade Mode Coming Soon?

Nov 17, 2010

About a week ago Halfbrick finally showed us what was to be of that mysterious black banana that taunts us with its “Coming Soon” innuendo. Of course it has already been released to the iOS masses but when is Android going to get some love? There are over 100,000 Android users anxiously awaiting some new fruit slicing challenges and even more who are rediscovering their fruit frenzied fingers via the Galaxy Tab so I ask again: “When is Android going to get some love”?

Fruit Ninja For Android

Fruit Ninja For Android

Sep 20, 2010

“It slices!” “It dices!” And for one easy payment of 99 cents, you too can own this “fabricator of fruit fury,” this “slicing sultan of strawberries,” this reigning “walloper of watermelons.” So, what are you waiting for?! Click on over to your local Android Market and “Buy one today!”

Did you like my classic Ronald Popeil impersonation? No? Oh well, I tried. In case you haven’t heard, the very addicting & highly popular iOS game Fruit Ninja has sliced its way onto the Android platform. At only $.99, this ginsu game is a steel (get it? steel?).

Apparently the guys over at Halfbrick have found a long lost ninja scroll that clearly states “All ninjas hate fruit!” and Fruit Ninja is what happens when someone tauntingly tosses fruit in front of one. Very fun and very addicting, this game results in endless hours of unproductivity.