Brief iPad Game Roundup (Apr/12)

#1 Posted by Skald (4370 posts) -

The iPad is somewhat underrepresented on Giant Bomb. In keeping with the tradition of other mainstream gaming communities, it has been relegated to the same status as Facebook or Flash Player, not so much a purpose built gaming platform, but something that enables casual games by sheer accident. Personally, I think this is a mistake. With a thriving indie community, and a number of interesting games in the pipe, the iPad is stronger than ever, easily outclassing the Wii, Vita or 3DS, while also serving as a competent computer. 

To this end, I've tried to compile a list of interesting games for the platform. Most of my favorite games render in crisp retina resolution, but some classics slip by on their gameplay alone. Anyway, before I run out of space to ramble, the list (or section thereof)-

1. Carcassonne

You've probably heard of Carcassonne, the popular German board game. If you haven't, it's fairly easy to explain. Each player draws a card from the deck and places it on the table, each one aligning orthogonally with an existing tile. Once a card is placed, a marker can be placed on any portion of the card, with different terrain types scoring different amounts of points under different circumstances. The game ends when the cards run out. 

What makes this game great is attention to detail. The interface itself is a table cloth elements. Being based on a real object, it might drive some people crazy, but the details are sharp and obvious. The game itself is hard to misunderstand, and the interface really drives that home. Thanks in part to these facts, I'd even recommend this over the physical game. 

2. Angry Birds Space

People love to bitch about Angry Birds, but the truth is that it's a charming puzzle game, and worth playing. Space is that, but times a hundred.

I admit, Angry Birds didn't really click for me when gravity was constant. The first three outings were polished and interesting, but overwhelmingly bland. Adding the dark void of space, however, fixed my complaints, and rejuvenated my interest in the series. Sure, it's still not Bioshock or what have you, but the whole series costs like, four bucks.

3. Bike Baron

I didn't think virtual controls would work so well, but holding my iPad and manipulating the tilt and speed of a roaring motorcycle is easy. Bike Baron could easily be a console game, but it works just as well on a ten inch slab of glass. It plays exactly like Trials, which is to say it gets frustratingly hard. With all the levels I got for such a paltry sum, I'd easily recommend it. 

4. Spell Tower

If Spell Tower were a book, it'd be a really good biography, something I never thought I'd read, and looks boring from the outside, but is immensely enjoyable regardless. It's a word game, but it was made by someone who hates word games. The result was a Tetris-Scrabble-Boggle where the player has to connect letters to form long words before they either run out of letters or run out of space depending on the mode. It also has a realtime multiplayer component I wish I could try out. 

5. EPOCH. 

It'd be easy to call this game a ripoff of Shadowgun, Infinity Blade or Gears of War, but that'd be a major disservice. While elements of certain cover based games are evident, it's its own beast, combining swipes, chest-high walls, and robots with lasers. While the start of game feels too easy, later stages and difficulties really start to take their toll. I'd hesitate to put this on the list on gameplay alone, but the game also looks really good. 

PS- You should also play Aquaria, Sword & Sworcery, and Machinarium. If you don't have an iPad, I'm pretty sure these games are all on Steam. If not, Google them or something.

And if you read all the way through my post, thanks! Anyone else have a favorite iOS or Android game?

#2 Posted by SamFo (1571 posts) -

@Skald: Thanks alot for this, I'd appreciate if you ever come across any other great games to update this thread!

#3 Posted by JimF (10 posts) -

League of Evil 1 and 2, maybe the closest thing iOS has to a Super Meat Boy. Until that Super Meat Boy iOS game comes out that is.

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