Ludomotion Launches New Game SUMICO at Gamescom

Ludomotion Launches New Game SUMICO at Gamescom

Aug 19, 2014

With help from Vlambeer’s Rami Ismail, Ludomotion recently launched its new puzzler SUMICO right on the floor at Gamescom.

Excerpts from the informational email:

Vlambeer’s Rami Ismail just minutes ago pushed the button to officially launch Ludomotion’s new number puzzler SUMICO for Android.

SUMICO is an addictive numbers game for mobile, developed by a journalist and a game developer. It is released for Android, the iOS release will follow in September.

Ismail was among the first developers to play the original prototype and provided the SUMICO creators with loads of valuable feedback.

Ismail: “I’m super honoured to have a developer ask me to launch their game. Helps that I’ve been playing the game for a few weeks already.”

SUMICO is available for free (with optional in-app purchases) on the Play Store; the launch trailer is below.

Even Up Review

Even Up Review

Nov 12, 2013

Different people play puzzle games for different reasons. Some of them like the challenge, solving the difficult riddles. Others like the calmness of thinking their way through the level, with nothing to disturb the meditation-like state of watching at the motionless board. For me, the interest is in learning. When I play the game for several hours, I begin to notice specific patterns of where to make the next move, or how to solve the puzzle as fast as possible. Not because I like challenges, it’s just fun to notice how you get better at something, and the puzzles provide a great opportunity to see it. To be fair, I didn’t like Even Up at first, for its absolute simplicity, and repetitive levels, but as I played it, it started to become more and more interesting, for the very reason that you do become better and better at it, while it becomes more and more challenging.

Each level of Even Up contains a tiled play-field with several orange blocks on it. Each block has a certain number on it, Even Up 2marking its level. The blocks of the same level can be combined together, if they share the same line or row, and don’t have any other blocks in the way. When two blocks are combined, they become a block of a higher level. For example, if you have two blocks with the number “2” on them in the same row, you can swipe the lower one up, or the higher one down, and they’ll mix into one block with number “3”. The goal of every level is to leave a single block on the field. The level packs are unlocked after a certain number of levels is completed, and differ by the size of the field and its difficulty.

Even Up doesn’t really have much content or variety, and presents the player with pleasant, but dry graphics and sound. To be fair, I didn’t really mind it. The game is original and engaging, and it’s everything a great puzzle has to have. There are plenty of levels that are mostly easy to solve, but do contain some challenges. Luckily, the game is undemanding, and allows the player to undo every move, or restart without any penalties. Even Up is a small, but wholly enjoyable little game.

Toot Toot ABC Review

Toot Toot ABC Review

Feb 9, 2012

Toot Toot ABC is a cute game by Australian based company Game Labs that introduces preschoolers (ages 1-4) to their ABCs and 123s. Children play one of three darling trains who live in an colorful, interactive World. Kids encounter various animals while learning their alphabet and numbers. With three adventures to choose from there is always something for the little ones to explore.

Kids can pick from the ABC adventure, 123 adventure or take a break and race against other trains. During the ABC adventure, kids match animals with their corresponding letter. In the 123 adventure, kids count animals by dragging them in the train cars. What makes Toot Toot ABC extra unique is the use of exotic – or at least Australian – animals; I have officially learned of the numbat’s existence.

One of my favorite aspects of Toot Toot ABC (besides its Australian animal theme) is the brightly colored, interactive World the trains live in. See the red apples on the tree? Click one to have a little snack. Want to show your train some love? Tap his bell and he makes noise. Need a break? Take some time to pop balloons floating around the screen. Children like to explore their surroundings as a way of learning and Toot Toot ABC takes that into considerations when designing their educational World.

Toot Toot ABC also helps children develop fine motor skills. For example, in the 123 adventure, the child needs to be able to click an animal, hold the screen, and drag the animal to the train car for it to be counted. The controls for Toot Toot ABC are responsive and accurate enough for young children to control but not so responsive there is no challenge.

As a new mother I am looking for fun, new age, technological tools to help my daughter learn as she grows and reaches new cognitive and physical developmental milestones. She may not be ready for Toot Toot ABC yet, but it is definitely a game I will keep in mind when the time comes. This cute, colorful, educational game is too darling to pass up for $2.07. I really hope Game Labs continues to develop other educational games for various developmental levels.

OutNumbered Review

OutNumbered Review

Jul 11, 2011

Puzzle games sometimes work best when they’re stripped down to the barest of bones. That seems to be the philosophy behind OutNumbered, a math based puzzler from GoodApe. In it, you’re presented with a grid of numbers. You’re also given a number at the bottom.

Your task, should you choose to accept it, is to use numbers in the grid to add together to make the number at the bottom. Once you’ve done that, those numbers from the grid disappear and you’re given another number to aim for. Clear all the numbers from the grid and you move on to the next one.

It’s a really simple system, and it works quite well. The more sums you can make with the grid numbers, the more points you get, which means you have to think on your feet if you want to aim for the highest scores.

OutNumbered manages to be one of those rare games that are both fun and helps you to learn. Sure, the sums you’re creating aren’t exactly taxing, at least not at first, but the game makes you think about what you’re doing, rather than showing you the easiest option straight away.

The game looks a bit old fashioned when compared to some of the more expensive apps on the Android Market, but it plays smoothly and the touch screen interfaces all work rather well. These are only minor issues, though, and they do little to sully the user’s enjoyment of the product.

It might not be exciting, it might not involve large men hitting or shooting each other, but OutNumbered is a successful little game nonetheless. It has a game plan and it sticks to it, and it’s all the better for that. It won’t change the world, but it might make you a little bit better at adding things together, which is no mean feat in itself.

Freaky Friday – Dreamboy Calculator

Freaky Friday – Dreamboy Calculator

Jul 1, 2011

Oh, calculations; where would we be without them? No doubt we would be spinning helplessly into the endless abyss of not really understanding things. That said, there are some things that not only don’t require calculation, but that, by their very nature, are incalculable. I’m talking, of course, about love.

Unfortunately, this week’s Freaky Friday app disagrees with me. It thinks that with the application of rigorous numerical tests, love can easily be worked out. All you need are a few statistics referring to your intended and a few statistics referring to your self and hey presto, Bob’s your uncle, love will happen. What a spectacular load of old nonsense.

When you add to that bucket of ridiculousness that fact that Dreamboy Calculator is obviously a straight, lazy port of an iPhone app, and you can see why it’s made it onto our whirlwind of the wrong.

The app allows you to keep track of your dreamboy matches, add them from your contacts and compare them against your own preferences. Say you want a rich boy with no sense of humour, then you rate your dream boys with sliding scales and see which of them is the richest and most boring. Yay, instant matches!

Of course, if they’re in your contact book, you could just text them and ask if they want to go and get a drink. That way, you can find out for yourself, sans calculations, whether or not they’re your dream boy. I mean, they’re probably not, but it’s worth a shot, right?

Dreamboy Calculator is stupid, vacuous and shallow and a fine example of everything that’s wrong with the world. All right, maybe not everything, but definitely the bits that involve love and relationships and common decency.

Or maybe I’m just upset because it said my dream boy match was only 19%. Dammit, I thought me and hypothetical Jonny were going to be together forever.

Dreamboy Calculator is available now, for free, from the Android Market

Freaky Friday – Your Rhythms

Freaky Friday – Your Rhythms

May 27, 2011

For this week’s Freaky Friday app, not only have we ventured into the far flung reaches of the Android Market, we’ve also strode out into the realms of utter nonsense. You see, some apps make it onto our rundown of the ridiculous because they’re weird, some make it because they’re scary; Your Rhythms makes it because it spews out unrelenting gibberish.

Your Rhythms is an app that calculates your biorhythms. For example, today my intellectual rhythm is at -8%, but my aesthetic rhythm is at +92%. Yay? Your Rhythms never troubles itself with explaining what biorhythms are, or what the calculations mean – it just gives you numbers and an interchangeable graph.

Want to know how spiritual you’re going to be today? Then just type in your date of birth and Your Rhythms will let you know. Except it won’t, of course, because it’s just peddling a bunch of made up statistics and claiming that they will have some sort of reference to your real life.

According to the app, my awareness is very high today, which is good, but in the next few days, it’s going to reach one hundred percent. In my head, that means I’ll become some sort of super hero, with awareness so acute that I can predict disaster before it strikes. Unfortunately though, at the same time my emotions are going to hit rock bottom, so I’ll be a sad super aware hero.

The suggestion that anything at all can be calculated from a person’s date of birth, except their age, is frankly ludicrous. Add to that an app that is on the hideous side of ugly, does nothing to explain or ingratiate itself and is, to all intents and purposes, nothing more than some wiggly lines, and you’ll understand why Your Rhythms has earned its place amongst the parade of the perplexing.

That said, my intuition is pretty low at the moment, so maybe I just don’t know what I’m talking about.

Your Rhythms is available now, for free, from the Android Market.

Drop 7 review

Drop 7 review

Mar 18, 2011

Developer: Zynga New York
Price: US$2.99
Version: 1.6
App Reviewed on: Motorola Droid X

At first glance, Drop 7 looks like almost every other puzzle game. You have an object at the top of the screen — a dot — that you have to drop into a grid. The dots are numbered 1 through 7, but there are also grey dots with no numbers on them. Also, you aren’t just matching the numbers up; there’s a slight twist to it.

The way you play the game is that you want to make rows and columns of certain numbers of dots. For example, if you want to clear out all the 6s in a column or row, you need to have 6 dots in that column or row. The other dots will fall down and remain until the column or row equals their number. In addition, you have grey dots that need to be “cracked open” to reveal their number by making a dot pop directly next to one. Doing this twice reveals the number, then you continue as usual.