If you're a console gamer, you know that late summer is something of a dead zone for major game releases, as all the big studios gear up for blockbusters in October and November. Mobile gaming isn't following that trend at all: we had some fantastic releases in August, servicing every niche from casual to hardcore. We've got big franchise releases from Fallout and Pac-Man, and more interesting indie releases like Card Crawl. Pick your poison from our seven favorites below, along with honorable mentions.
Solitaire and sword-and-sorcery fantasy wouldn't seem like an obvious combination, but the rookie Android game from Arnold Rauers does just that. Card Crawl has you facing a giant troll in an oddball card game, mixing elements of solitaire, battle card games like Magic the Gathering, and roguelike dungeon crawlers. It's an interesting little game that lends itself towards more strategy than might be immediately apparent.
Here's the gist: your opponent is the "deck," and he gives you 54 random cards three at a time. Each card is either an item like a sword or shield, a monster that you have to kill, a potion that can heal you, or coins that can be saved up for purchases.
March doesn't have any new blockbuster titles for you to check out, but there are a lot of interesting indies in the following list. For speed and twitch freaks, we've got Fotonica, one of the most unique runner games I've ever come across. Fans of humorous adventure can check out a new take on Hamlet, and strategy gamers have an impressive but unfortunately single-player only option in Frozen Synapse. Investigate these and other favorites, along with some honorable mentions, below.
In Boss Monster, you are the big baddie at the end of a level, and you can only win by killing more good guys than the miscreants you're competing with. You do this by building rooms to expand your dungeon, increasing the amount of damage the environment deals and bettering the odds that the heroes you lure into your lair will die before getting to see your face.
The card game comes in a small box, supports up to four players, is easy for new people to grasp, and allows for an all around good time. I'm a fan.
Hey, Minecraft fans! Did you know that Mojang, the developer of the uber-popular creation game, has been working on another game for years? It's called "Scrolls," and... well, it's nothing like Minecraft. Nope, it's more like a mix between Plants vs Zombies and Blizzard's Hearthstone card game, all set up on a hexadecimal tower defense structure. That's confusing. Watch the promotional video below to try and get a handle on the unique cross-platform title. This is a tablet-only game, no smartphones need apply.
Scrolls is part strategy, part tower defense, part card game. You use the somewhat randomized cards to deploy units, structures, and spells to both defend your own five "idols" and try to destroy at least three of those on the opposing side.
To be frank, October was a bit bare of notable game releases, unless you count ports and adaptations of older titles. Our monthly top seven contains three ports, one adaptation of a card game, and one modified version of a casual PlayStation title. Only Botanicula and Rovio's surprisingly engaging Retry stand on their own. Still, there's plenty to choose from if all you need is a diversion, and our Honorable Mention section includes some choice entries for RPG and horror fans.
I love Sentinels of the Multiverse, even though my friends and I lose nearly every time we attempt to stand up against Baron Blade and the forces of evil (don't get me started on Omnitron). There's just something about this comic book-inspired card battle game that makes me want to give it my all and work with my teammates to resist the waves of damage being heaped upon us by villains and the environment alike. Now that Sentinels of the Multiverse has made its way into the Play Store, we can do the same in video game form by passing around an Android tablet.
You know what collectible card battle games are missing? Math. Well, that's not strictly true: your standard Magic clone includes a lot of math, but it usually doesn't go much further than counting. The new Android game Calculords is a mixture of the standard card battle formula, lane-based strategy, and some grade school arithmetic. It made quite a splash on iOS a few months ago, and it looks like the Android translation is just about perfect. It's available on the Play Store for $3.
Calculords comes from rookie developer Ninja Crime, the brainchild of Cracked writer Seanbaby (though I remember some of his Electronic Gaming Monthly articles from 15 freakin' years ago).
The Magic-style collectible card game has remained one of the most consistently profitable free-to-play genres on mobile devices. That might explain why every hot-ticket property from Star Wars to Tekken wants in on the action. The latest slightly baffling addition to the pile of CCG titles comes from the World Wrestling Federation Entertainment. Feast your eyes on WWE SuperCard, a game that forces big, burly actors to fight each other with tiny scraps of cardboard instead of fake punches.
But wait a second, this game isn't just spawning Frank The Steroid Abuser into the ring when you play his card.
The perennial trading card game from Wizards of the Coast made its Android debut last year, and it seems that the developers intend to give it regular updates, just like the PC version. Magic 2015 includes an expanded collection of cards that match the physical card game, though you'll have to shell out quite a lot of cash for the full set - not unlike the real-world counterpart. Magic 2015 is a free download, but you'll need at least 1.2GB of free space to hold it.
If you're familiar with the card game, you know what to expect: two players battle by laying down lands, collecting manna, summoning creatures, and casting spells.