There’s no going around it, so I’ll just say it. EvoCreo is a blatant Pokemon ripoff. It’s a copy of the Pokemon Red down to the T. Or, at least it seems a lot like that to me, since I never actually followed the endless franchise that Pokemon became. EvoCreo has all the same mechanics, all the same gameplay â€“ hell, even the geography is a lot like the Pokemon. It is, for all intents and purposes, a Pokemon game, except with all obvious references cut and replaced by weirdly-named placeholders. But here’s the most interesting part: EvoCreo is actually pretty good.
For those that don’t know anything about the Pokemon, it’s basically a very simple turn-based tactical action, where the player needs to collect various weird creatures and then battle them against the enemy creatures. Each creature type has unique stats and abilities, and the creatures can level up and evolve into their more powerful selves. There’s quite a lot of management involved, so it’s very easy to become OCD about the stuff. As I mentioned, EvoCreo is exactly the same. The player takes a role of a boy/girl who travels all over a given region, gets involved with various stories, visits various places, inhabited and wild, and of course, collects a bunch of critters that will fight for him against their own kind.
EvoCreo is actually pretty fun, and copies Pokemon so perfectly that you can’t even blame it for its plagiarization, and start to actually admire its efforts. Although the creatures aren’t as memorable as the Pokemon, they’re still pretty well designed, and have different stats and abilities â€“ there’s even 130 of them. The battles are also the same: the player can use one of his creature’s abilities, switch it for another one, use one of his items, or attempt to flee the battle. If the battle is won, the player and his creature get some experience points that allow them to level up and learn new abilities. There’s also a store that allows the player to purchase various stuff, although for some reason, I couldn’t access it â€“ but I’m willing to write it off as a single-time bug.
Overall, EvoCreo is an almost perfect copy. So, if you’re a fan of the Pokemon and want to play it on your Android device, or simply want to see what all the fuss is about, you can try out EvoCreo. At least it’s easier than to buy a Nintendo.
Mini Motor Racing WRT is another micro-machines clone that is surprisingly difficult to talk about. It’s a very staple game, and the concept of small machines competing in 3D environments is so overdone that it’s honestly hard for me to even gather my thoughts about it.
Mini Motor Racing WRT gives the player control over one of the numerous micro-cars that race around various colorful tracks in a series of championships. The game has a bunch of game modes, standard stuff for racing games, the most important of which is a vast career mode. The core of them all is the same, though. The player needs to choose a vehicle, suitable for the track conditions â€“ an interesting variable that includes off-road and rainy options â€“ and race in one of the several race options. The game mechanics are entirely cloned from the dozens of other Micro Machines clones, with nary an upgrade. The game is also filled to the brim with ads and free-to-play mechanics that restrict the gameplay and frustrate you to no end. There’s everything in here: energy bar, unfair AI, a rather strict paywall. Also, not quite on the same level, but the menu interface looks just amazingly cheap, like it got lifted straight off a fifth-grader’s first videogame.
The surprising part in all this is that the actual racing is pretty good. The backgrounds are satisfyingly high-definition and the tracks are all different and unique. The cars are actually pleasant to control, and the complexity tracks requires the player to have some skill, regardless of the greatness of his car. It’s very unfortunate that the gameplay is covered with a bunch of crappy free-to-play mechanics.
Overall, it’s kinda difficult to advise this game, since if you like racing with tiny little cars with weird physics, there’s a bunch of other competitors out there, and the nice on-track experience of Mini Motor Racing WRT is spoiled by the abundance of frustrating restrictions and ads. So, you can try it if you want, maybe you can look past the frustration.
Pool is a bit of a weird game for me, since I’ve never been very interested in the real game, bu for some reason am obsessed with the digital version of it. There’s a lot of pool simulators out there, and 8 Ball Pool doesn’t exactly try to stand out a lot. Still, it’s a nice game with relatively honest rules and fine matchmaking.
In case someone doesn’t know the rules for 8 Ball Pool, the task is to net your 7 balls, finishing with an 8-ball, before your opponent does the same. It’s forbidden to strike your opponent’s balls directly, and it’s forbidden to net the 8-ball before you finish with the others. It’s a fairly straightforward game, so I doubt that even the very beginners are going to have much trouble with it.
Thankfully, 8 Ball Pool is exactly what it says on the can, and besides some mini-games, the game itself remains unchanged. The only variety is that there’s a lot of different cues that can be purchased with the in-game chips, or with virtual bucks that can, of course, be purchased with actual ones. Different cues provide some slight advantage to the player, but I don’t think that even the best ones are necessarily providing an unfair advantage. Skill and aim are still kings, so if you can’t aim and calculate the outcome at all, no amount of cues are going to help â€“ at least that’s what I took from the game. It’s quite possible that at the later stages, everything is determined by the size and shape of your cue.
The physics of 8 Ball Pool are surprisingly on point. The balls bounce and roll around just as one would expect from the real ones. Also, it’s actually possible to spin the cue ball, so if you’re certain in your abilities, all kinds of strategies can be possible, besides maybe sending the ball flying, but I’m pretty sure this trick should break some kind of universal rule, so whatever.
Overall, I got a pleasant feeling from 8 Ball Pool. Besides some ads in the menu and other fluff, I actually didn’t notice I was playing a free-to-play game during the match, and the game itself is pretty fun, so if you like pool, or would like to try it, 8 Ball Pool is as good place as any.
Shadow Strike is a somewhat controversial, but pretty high-quality action game for the fans of American military. It’s a game about war drones, and gives the player control over a drone, completing various missions for US military. I wouldn’t want to ignore the elephant in the room, and say that the game feels somewhat dark. I’m not sure if this was the intention of the developers, or it’s simply my own bias showing through, but the game almost feels aware of the themes that it presents. The commanding officer of the player looks just a little too villainous, and the bleak, blue-tinted night-vision screen detaches the player from whatever is happening on the screen so well, you almost don’t want to switch to the regular, full-color mode. I’m certain that I read into the game too much, so if anything, let my weird uncanny feeling be a sort of a compliment to the game’s quality.
The gameplay of Shadow Strike is pretty straightforward: there’s a progression of missions, where the player gets to complete certain objectives, such as destroying a VIP vehicle, protecting a convoy, or simply search-and-destroy, activating and aiming the drone’s weapons systems. If the player completes the main goal, and any of the additional ones, he gets a cash reward and a rank progression. The cash can be spent on upgrading the drone itself, or its weapons. There’s a number of weapons with varying characteristics that can be purchased, or upgraded. Additional systems of the drone include countermeasures that let the player shoot down the enemy RPGs, and armor that can soak up several hits before the drone is destroyed. The game looks good, and sounds good. I didn’t play it long enough to get to the paywall, but insofar, it’s a been pretty sweet ride.
Overall, Shadow Strike is an energetic free-to-play action game that definitely puts some effort into itself. It’s definitely for the fans of everything militaristic. I have no doubts that it already has a bunch of dedicated fans, and since it has some additional content released for it already, that it’s going to last for a while. So, if you like the idea of piloting a war drone and reigning hell on the enemies of the state, this is most certainly a great game for you.
Alright, it’s probably time for disclaimer: Always Sometimes Monsters is long. I’m certain I didn’t complete even a quarter of the game, so I can’t speak for the turns that it may have later than four or so hours that I’ve spent playing it. And it is the kind of a game that you should complete before you state your opinion. So, I apologize for that, but I did play for a long time, so if the game suddenly becomes a strategy or a goat simulator later on, it’s entirely not my fault. But I do think that the game is pretty great.
On the first glance, Always Sometimes Monsters is just a pretentious indie RPG, made with RPG maker â€“ and there’s certainly a lot of those. However, after playing it after a while, you start to understand something. This thing is devilishly great written. The story and the characters and the world are just insanely interesting and hold you for a really long while. It’s even more impressive when you consider that the game is, essentially, a life simulator. The player character needs to go to work, find a place to sleep and eat, and remember all the little things that would bore you out of your mind in any other game â€“ but here, it strangely works. I’ve never knew I wanted a game where I’m supposed to remember my appointments and decide if I want to spend the last dollar on a meal, or on rent. Graphically and gameplay-wise it’s really not any different from what you’d expect, but I was completely blown away at how skillfully this game simulates a life that is just a bit more exciting that your own. It probably sounds like I’m describing a cheap Sims knock-off, but it’s entirely a different thing.
Overall, I strongly suggest Always Sometimes Monsters for anyone who is alright with playing a game that looks more like a daily life simulator, than a classic â€œheroâ€ perspective. It may look a bit anime-heavy, and it certainly looks somewhat bland, but it’s just too interesting to skip it.
Winter is finally over, so it’s about time people started missing it. For those that already do, here’s a great little game called Dudeski, that transports you to a snowy landscape â€“ and into the nineties as well.
I imagine that most of the people have played, or at least heard about the rather old game, called SkiFree. It was extremely simple, but was able to kill hours of your time. Dudeski seemingly aims to recreate that with a similar theme and mechanics. It’s also covered in nineties slang like a Vanilla Ice song.
Dudeski puts the player on top of a Shred Lord mountain and challenges him to make it all the way down. For some reason, conversely to real world, the mountain gets more challenging the lower you go, and when you fail, the hero gets transported all the way back to the top, no doubt by those jerk penguins. The controls are very simple. Press on the left side of the screen and the skier slides to the left. Press on the right side of the screen, and the skier slides to the right. Press and release both sides of the screen, and the skier will jump slightly. That’s it. However, the simple controls don’t translate into a simple game, since the track is pretty difficult to traverse and contains a lot of trees, rocks, and crevices, not to mention the giant avalanche that is following the player character.. The skier also moves at a pretty high pace, to the point where the passing terrain slowly begins to blur together. Which might be bad for my eyes, but definitely makes for great game.
Dudeski is free-to-play, but it doesn’t really have any restrictions, so I guess you could say that it’s free. The in-game â€œstoreâ€ which is just a couple of penguins that sell protective equipment and shortcuts at certain points, is entirely trading on the pine cones that can be collected on the track.
In short, Dudeski is an amazing free-to-play skiing simulator that is simple, interesting, and exciting at the same time. Definitely a pick for everyone, who isn’t very bothered by the fact that this game is RADICAL, man!
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, the 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 â€“ and it often does â€“ 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.
Reckless Racing 3 is a racing simulator that features realistic physics (more or less), lots of different cars, and a whole bunch of levels and game modes. The world of mobile driving sims is over-saturated with half-assed clones and other cheap-looking free-to-play racing garbage, but this is the real thing.
Reckless Racing 3 is a great combination of arcade gameplay coupled with top-notch development, resulting in a very fun experience. It doesn’t really have a story, but boasts three different modes: career, arcade, and a single event. Career and single event are pretty self-explanatory, and arcade is just a number of challenges the player has to beat. Each of these modes further consists of three race types. There’s a usual race, where the player needs to overcome a bunch of other cars to get the first place; there’s drifting, in which the player needs to score the largest number of points in a limited time on a track by swerving his car into drifts; and finally, there’s gymkhana, in which the player needs to finish a particular route as fast as possible, evading the road cones and other obstacles that add to the lap time.
Completing any race will give the player money that he can spend in the garage. There’s no actual customization in Reckless Racing 3, and the player can choose to spend his money either to buy a new car with better stats, or to improve the appearance of the one he already has.
I can’t stress enough how much Reckless Racing 3 looks like a fully-featured game, compared to most other mobile racing games. It’s got great graphics that can be changed if the game is too slow on your device. It’s got arcade but very much actual physics that send the cars flying off the edges and into each other â€“ or even flip them over during a really hard turn. There’s also a bunch of different levels that are cropped into even more tracks. And finally, it’s got great hard rock soundtrack that adds to the excitement. I had the best time with it, and although it’s still just a simple top-down arcade at heart, it’s a damn good one.
To be honest, I’m not a big fan of basketball, meaning that I have no idea how the game is structured, what the player positions are, and even how long the rounds last. And that’s fine, because All-Star Basketball doesn’t require that kind of knowledge. Because it’s not a damn basketball game, it’s a free throw simulator. And it doesn’t actually have any stars â€“ well, there are star shapes, which I guess is technically correct.
All-Star Basketball gives the player control over the loneliest basketball player in the world, whose pastimes include throwing a ball in a net in an empty stadium, throwing the ball in an empty field, and in a range of other equally empty locations.
The actual technique of proper throwing in All-Star Basketball is still a matter of guessing for me. To throw the ball, the player simply needs to flick the finger up the screen with proper speed. But the player changes positions every fourth throw, just when you get the correct way to throw, and then you have to guess it all over again. It’s not that difficult, of course, but it’s barely impossible to actually master it to get long series of throws. And it’s a requirement, since the longer your hit streak, the more gold and points you get. The gold is required to purchase levels, modes, other stuff, and play in multiplayer, and points are worth literally nothing.
The game modes, that are absolutely impossible to unlock, slightly change the throwing circumstances. I can only guess if they are more interesting than the original mode, since in two hours that I’ve played the game, I couldn’t even get closed to the sum required to unlock one. There’s also a multiplayer mode, in which the poor sod shares his seclusion with another guy. Both parties chip in for 25 gold, and whoever wins the series of free throws, gets the money.
All in all, All-Star Basketball is actually not a bad game, although it does take a whole lot of loading time to start playing, and the throwing mechanics could be more varied from “swipe at the right time and speed”. It’s got okay physics and what looks like a fair difficulty, as well as a great amount of gear to unlock, and even several game modes. I guess that it’s going to be fine for people who like simple sports sims, and aren’t put off by the ads.
Here’s a sentence I didn’t expect to make today: this free-to-play foosball simulator is a lot of fun. If someone is too young to remember what this is, and/or have never watched Friends, foosball is a table version of soccer, in which the players stand on the opposite sides of a specially crafted table, crossed by several parallel rods with dummy players on them. The players rotate the sticks with the dummies in order to hit the ball into the opponent’s gates. Although the game looks weird at first, it’s pretty fun, so Foosball Cup World simply needed to accurately transport the field into digital world, add a proper physical simulation for the ball, a couple of options for variety of gameplay, and not screw it up with useless free-to-play restrictions. And thankfully, it coped with the task almost perfectly. Besides the small ads and a long time it takes to get comfortable with the controls, the game is exactly what I’d expect to see from a mobile foosball game â€“ if I ever did expect to see one.
There are several game modes in Foosball Cup World. There’s the quick match, where the player plays against an AI, in any battlefield and by any rules he wants. There’s the challenge mode, providing about a couple dozens of challenges, in which the player has to test his skills. The challenges reward the player with special points that can be spent on purchasing new tables, players, or balls that have different behavior. There’s not a whole lot, but it’s enough to keep the game fresh for quite a while. If the challenge is failed, it can be tried again after a couple of minutes. Another mode is the tournament, where the player has to win in a series of matches to gain special prizes. Finally, there’s the World League which is the most difficult mode, in which the player has to win against all other countries. The tournament and world league aren’t available from the start and have to be unlocked. Finally, there’s the two player mode, in which two players can play on the single device against each other, quite in the spirit of original foosball.
Overall, it’s the best recreation of foosball on the platform â€“ at least because it’s, likely, the only one in existence. If you’re a fan of foosball, nothing should stop you from enjoying it, and if you’re not â€“ it’s still a fun and challenging little arcade to kill some time.
“Cheetah Simulator” sounds like a name I’d enter in a “create a new videogame genre” competition, when I was about 12. And honestly, the game is exactly the sort of thing that I’d imagine it would be. By which I mean, profoundly boring. Not that I had some expectations with a title like this, and for its empty price tag it’s certainly fine, just don’t expect to hold onto it for a long time.
Honestly, Cheetah Simulator is pretty self-descriptive. The player embodies a cheetah that suffers insomnia, constipation, extreme dehydration, and lots of other issues, which is more or less understandable, since it exists in an enclosed subspace that’s about a couple of city blocks in diameter. Here’s a list of tasks that it can perform: run, jump, claw, eat, drink, collect chests that contain cheetah facts, roar, produce offsprings, and die. I’d say that it’s a pretty compelling list of things cheetahs usually do, but that’s not enough for a varied gaming experience. There’s a bunch of animals that the cheetah can kill and eat, some of them being quite tough and able to kill the inexperienced cheetah pretty quickly. Basically, the gameplay consists of killing smaller animals, eating them and leveling up through it, so the cheetah becomes stronger, and then moving on to stronger prey. There’s a couple of interesting mechanics, such as being able to mate and produce offspring that will hunt with the player and help kill off the most powerful animals. Another cool trick is that if the cheetah jumps and claws at an animal while running, she will perform a tackle that will kill off the smaller animals and, well, tackle the larger ones. It requires a bit of skill and makes hunting a bit more interesting. There are also several skins for your pride to wear that are unlocked after reaching a certain level, and a special attack.
Overall, Cheetah Simulator isn’t bad, especially for a free game, but it lacks features, multiplayer and proper scale. The same game, but blown up to at least five hundred yards and with several ecosystems, would be a nature lovers’ feast. Right now it’s basically just a demo for a non-existent game. I still recommend it for a younger audience and the fans of African savannah, so here’s hoping that it will grow into something bigger.