Here’s a bunch of games I’ve picked up over the last few…somethings. It’s hard to tell with iOS, a few of these I picked up without actually getting a chance to play for a while or just completely forgetting that I downloaded them. Damn this crazy app market.

Bug Princess (aka Mushihimesama)

Well it’s another Cave shooter port, not sure how much else there is to say about it. It doesn’t have full manual control options like Deathsmiles did which is a bit of a disappointment, but otherwise it appears solid. Original, Maniac, and Ultra are there (latter two have to be unlocked), and if you want the arcade bullet patterns and speed you can pick “Hell” difficulty, although I don’t know if the leaderboards take that into account.

Unlike the previous ports this one is a universal app, but not “HD”, which means it can run on the first iPad (unlike Espgaluda II HD). It’s still an improvement over playing the iPhone ports since the control extends fullscreen, and if you use something other the smallest scaling mode you’re only going through one resize vs the previous resize plus 2x resize.

It could use better quality sound though. And an option to get rid of that damn OpenFeint crap.

Bug Princess, $4.99:
HIPPOTROUBLE


SpellTower

It’s a nice little word game from Zach Gage, the Unify and Bit Pilot guy. You have a grid of letters and you drag (or tap letters) to make words in any which way. There are special blocks you have to deal with to mix things up. One of them is a letter with a small number on it, with which you have to make a word of at least that many letters…which is a pain if it’s like a Q6. You can get around those with other special blocks that clear lines, or making a long enough word which clears out surrounding blocks.

Those blocks kind of limit it for trying to play long games, since you eventually get into a survival mode with whatever regular blocks you have left. On the plus side it has leaderboards and multiple modes to mess with. It has nifty little sounds that work nicely, but feels a bit sterile without music, disappointing considering the music in Gage’s previous games.

SpellTower, $1.99:
HIPPO


Async Corp.

IT IS FANTASTIC JUST BUY IT NOW!

It’s a great little unique puzzle game with polish out the ass, about the only thing it doesn’t have is multiplayer. You have two sides of blocks and can only move pieces from one side to other, and this can only be done if the move results in a 2×2 block or more can be made.

Async Corp., $0.99:
HIPPOTROUBLE


Major Mayhem

If you ever thought to yourself, “man I really want something like Time Crisis but third person and side scrolling” then this game is for you, cause really that’s the easiest way to describe the game. When you do nothing you’re (generally) hiding behind cover and shooting exposes you to enemy fire. And like Time Crisis, most enemy fire doesn’t hit you, you only have to watch out for the particular highlighted red shots. You go from post to post doing this, sometimes with activities in between like light platforming or shooting and dodging on the run, and occasionally bosses.

Overall it’s a nice package, but gets repetitive. Not that my nephew noticed, he played through it on Thanksgiving rather than interacting with anyone.1

Major Mayhem, $0.99:
HIPPO


Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner

Do you like Star Wars and augmented reality and/or gyro controlled games? Cause this is a pretty good example of either one of those things. The last update finally brought iPad compatibility and gyro control with the Star Wars backdrops (vs camera only before). It’s gimmicky sure, but it’s a hell of a gimmick.

The biggest issue with the game is simply that it takes a while to load. Well that itself wouldn’t be a big deal, but it doesn’t support fast app switching so just switching out and back results in starting over from the splash screens. It does save your play and resume once you get going again at least.

Star Wars Arcade: Falcon Gunner, $2.99:
HIPPO


King of Dragon Pass

Well this one is pretty old but it’s still great, kind of a choose your own adventure storybook mixed with light strategery in terms of decisions to make here and there. Like what action should you take when one of your clan leaders says someone’s wife has a fat ass and her husband gets offended?

And one little tip, don’t try making an alliance with the ducks. They’ll just laugh you out of town.

King of Dragon Pass, $9.992:
HIPPOTROUBLE
Rating system guide

  1. He eventually played with the other kids…in Scribblenauts, where they found out animals can carry guns.
  2. On sale for $7.99 right now!