The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Google has approached some publishers to participate in a new project allegedly called "Stamp," a portmanteau of "Stories" and their existing AMP service. The new "Stories" would be units of visually-oriented news, comprised of a series of slides including text, photos, and video. If that sounds a lot like Snapchat's Discover or Facebook's Instant Articles, you'd be right.
Design is extremely important in regard to pretty much everything. From fashion to cars, computer hardware to software, you can never escape good or bad design. Sometimes, the sheer popularity of a product will cause others to copy what they perceive to be worth imitating, despite the inevitable sneers from consumers and competitors alike. Such is the case with the Elephone S7, a pretty unashamed clone of the well-known Galaxy S7 Edge. But what if the copycat is actually halfway decent?
The Ele S7 holds up as a capable device. The hardware is pretty good and it runs an almost stock version of Android, which is a nice change of pace from what we usually see with Chinese phones.
Hey, Call of Duty fans: do you want to experience the fast-paced military shooter action, breathless multiplayer competition, and facepalm-worthy single-player campaigns of your favorite console franchise on your mobile device? Well too bad, here's Clash of Clans with some guns and tanks.
Call of Duty: Heroes is the standard base-building, tower defense/offense game that you've seen about a hundred times before, but this time it's got a thin veneer of the CoD franchise sprayed on top. The "Heroes" bit comes from the fact that some of the leading characters of the previous games in the franchise will show up to help boost your forces.
You have to look back pretty far to find a Rovio game that doesn't star aggravated avians. Last year the company developed the official mobile game for the unremarkable Dreamworks movie The Croods, but before that you have to look all the way back to Amazing Alex in 2012. Perhaps Rovio simply got tired of seeing their main franchise ripped off by a thousand mediocre wannabes, because now the internal developer LVL11 has released a Flappy Bird clone.
Wait, don't close that tab just yet. Retry, teased back in May, actually has some surprisingly solid gameplay elements. For one thing, you move your plane forward with careful taps that both tilt it up and activate the propeller, making real "flight" possible (instead of insane sine waves in the air).
After a bunch of clever Russian programmers started creating their own Portal for Android last month using the Unity 3D engine and Valve's assets, the news got picked up and spread through the Internet like wildfire. It all seemed too good to be true, but the initial demo was playable, and as I was monitoring the development thread, I saw how quickly progress was being made. The developers were literally recreating the Portal world at a phenomenal pace, and things were looking up.
Yep, I'm 100% serious. Right now, on my phone, is an alpha, proof-of-concept build of Portal. No, it's not official (it's definitely not supported by VALVe Software in any way), but it is tantalizingly awesome. Now, before you ask, we aren't going to link to the apk - it's from a pretty sketchy source. But if you look hard enough, you'll probably be able to find it out there in some of the darker corners of the web.
The thing is, you probably wouldn't want to play it, because there's actually not much to play. It's more proof of concept than anything, but it's a concept we very much like, and that basically seems to work - you listening, VALVe?
Huawei is a very interesting company. They're heavily subsidized by the Chinese government. There's been a lot of controversy surrounding their products in terms of intellectual property infringement and military ties.
And then they go and unveil this thing, the Huawei Vision - and, as the title says, it bears a striking resemblance (from the front, at least) to a certain other phone:
The phone so nice, they made it twice.
Here's a quick spec breakdown:
3.7-inch (probably WVGA SLCD) display
1GHz Snapdragon MSM8255 processor (same one you'll find in the Thunderbolt and other phones)
512MB RAM / 2GB internal storage
Huawei "3D" UI overlay
5MP rear camera / 720p video recording
The Vision doesn't have the Nexus S's trademark "hump" along the bottom of the phone, but otherwise, it's the spitting image of Google's most recent Nexus handset.
Puzzle games are some of my favourite titles for the Android because of their tendency to play well in short bursts. Rebirth looks to take the gameplay behind Lumines and bring it over to the mobile market: the question is, will it do the original justice?
For those looking for a basic clone of Lumines (more on that later), you've come to the right spot. Rebirth is pretty much the game to a "T", and brings the block-stacking madness to the Android platform with good faith.
For those unfamiliar, Lumines was a puzzle game that was first developed for the Playstation Portable System.
Sometimes, it's just not fun to be the good guy. Sometimes, you need to be a little bad. Sometimes, you just need to destroy everything that lays in your path with a fiery ball of fury.
Burn The City puts you in the shoes of a giant lizard/Godzilla/monster-thing who has hatched all alone and in a strange world. Clearly, the logical conclusion he reaches is to destroy everything around him.
This is accomplished by flinging fireballs from your mighty gullet, demolishing the buildings that face you. The buildings will be stripped down to their beams, finally collapsing under their own weight - and hopefully into the structures surrounding them.
I loved Plants Vs Zombies on my PC. LOVED it. I don't get excited by games much anymore but Plants Vs Zombies by PopCap captured my full attention for weeks when it just came out a couple of years back. A version for the iPhone came out later and enjoyed similar success to the original game. PopCap's Android page, however, has been quite empty. Literally:
Will PopCap ever release an Android variant? It's possible, but in the meantime, we have to quench our PvZ thirst by finding existing alternatives in the Market.
Leave Devil Alone
A few days ago, a new game called Leave Devil Alone by a relatively unknown publisher GZORZ showed up in the new releases section of the Android Market.