Remember when console sports games were just about, you know, sports? RBI Baseball back on the Genesis was basically just Street Fighter with nine guys on a side: pick a team, pick an opponent, and go. EA's latest soccer games have season modes, manager modes, career modes, and on and on and on. The FIFA Ultimate Team mode, a mix of franchise management and "fantasy" sports with full-length matches, is designed so that players can pit their team-building skills against online opponents all over the world. (Oh, and also spend a bunch of money on in-app purchases for a $60 game).
Last year EA released a companion app for the NBA Live console game that let you stick your face on a basketball player. This year, forget the gimmicks. You get a full blown NBA Live experience to play on your touchscreen.
NBA Live for Android has been undergoing geo-limited testing for quite the while now, with millions of people having already downloaded the title. Now it's openly available on Google Play.
Match-three games are inherently derivative at this point - there's only so much spin you can put on a genre so played-out that even your grandma is probably getting a bit bored swapping kitty cats for lollipops in a landscape best described as the pink-and-yellow paletted fever dream of a six-year-old. But if you're looking for yet another match-three indulgence that sits in at least one of the more desirable mid-outer circles of hell, you might enjoy the latest take on the genre from one of its earliest innovators, Pop Cap, in the form of Bejeweled Stars.
Looking for some cheap games? Then Electronic Arts and its mobile subsidiary Chillingo would like to offer you a selection for just a dime a piece (assuming you live in the US, Canada, Mexico, and a few other places). None of the games are particularly new with the exception of Power Ping Pong (which is pretty great) and the horror adventure game In Fear I Trust (which was just published), but most of them cost $4-5 at their regular prices.
No Limits is EA's first Need for Speed game built exclusively for mobile devices. It was previously up for pre-order, and now it's officially available for download from Google Play. This touch-friendly racer is free to download, but as you would expect from EA, that doesn't mean you won't feel pressure to spend money.
It's been a few years since a Need for Speed game popped up on Android, but EA announced last year that NFS: No Limits would arrive this spring. The game has already launched on iOS in a few regions, and the early reports indicate EA is up to its same old in-app purchase tricks. Actually, it's maybe even a little worse. No Limits will charge you to fill up the tank, which is funny because that sounds like a limit. Can't be, though. The game is called "no limits."
Fans of the classic SimCity franchise, today is... no, wait. EA has the license for SimCity, don't they? And this is an EA mobile game? Yeeeeeaaaaah, maybe you folks should just track down an old Pentium 4 machine and load up SimCity 2000 instead.
If Electronic Arts' terrible track record of reviving classic franchises for mobile doesn't dissuade you, then SimCity BuildIt is now available internationally from the Play Store. As with most EA games, it has had a brief period of geographically-restricted testing, but now it looks like most territories with access to the Play Store have access to the game.
I think almost every human being in the developed world has, at some point, played the original Peggle games. Those games offered satisfying pachinko-style casual gameplay on numerous platforms, but the new Peggle Blast is different in a few ways. It's the first Peggle game designed primarily for mobile devices, but it's also crawling with EA's customary in-app purchases.
Last week EA launched FIFA 15 Ultimate Team exclusively in Canada. Our northern friends have had plenty of time since to run the game through its paces, and it looks like things have checked out. EA is now releasing the game in the rest of the world.
Football season is back here in the United States - there were two, count 'em, two NFL apps in the last game roundup alone. But if you didn't get enough of the other football during the World Cup, EA would like to provide a digital alternative. At least if you live in Canada, that is - the company just published the Android version of FIFA 15 up north. Canucks, all the soccer you want is free for the asking... plus whatever in-app purchases you choose to expend.
The latest version of the evergreen football franchise has the usual improved graphics and updated rosters, and the Quick Simulation mode lets you drop into any matchup without dedicating yourself to a full season (the titular "Ultimate Team" mode), but it still relies on strategic substitutions when your underpowered players are lacking in a little IAP stamina.