If you're a fan of the super-popular top-down MOBA genre (think Dota, League of Legends, and Heroes of the Storm), you'll want to sit up and take notice of a little game called Vainglory. This mobile interpretation of the well-known formula has been built from the ground up for touchscreens, and the experience has been praised on iOS since its launch back in November. It's available for free today on the Play Store.
Vainglory doesn't make an attempt to hide its inspiration. If you're not familiar with the standard MOBA formula, it's basically a shorter and more action-packed version of a real-time strategy game where each player controls a single unit.
Pity poor Sonic the Hedgehog. The guy is basically the Dallas Cowboys of the video game world: after gaining almost universal appeal in the 90s, his victories over the last few years have been few and fleeting. But SEGA isn't giving up on its blue mascot, if only because he's probably the only marketable franchise that isn't a Kickstarter campaign or a hyper-sexualized murder machine. So here we are, with a new Sonic game that sees one of the most iconic platforming stars in the world... aping mobile endless runners.
To be fair, Sonic as an endless runner makes a lot of sense, and Sonic Runners (a bit on the nose, ain't it?) does a good job blending the genre's standard single-tap controls with classic Sonic elements.
Developer Digital Tales has been hyping its latest Superbike game for a few weeks, and today it's finally been released on Google Play. SBK15 is a simulator in the general sense, and it tries to bring a feeling of realism to its motorcycle races. The tracks are based on real tracks, the bikes are based on real bikes, and the riders are licensed likenesses of world championship racers, complete with authentic sponsor logos plastered to their helmets.
And don't get me wrong, SBK16 definitely has some good points. The graphics are appealing without being too taxing, the sense of speed is decent, and the tilt controls actually make sense in the context of leaning into a curve.
Space: the final frontier. Wait, no, that's not right - there's no such thing as a "final" frontier, because there's nothing else, so it can't be a frontier to nothing. Let me start again.
Space: it's really really big, and also pretty empty, and bored humans like to tell stories about all the weird things that might fill it up. So it is that Star Trek, among other things, was born. But the first official Star Trek game released for Android isn't all that interested in seeking out new life or new civilizations - it's harkening back to an 8-bit past that does not in fact exist for the storied franchise, and trying to suck as much gold-pressed latinum out of you as possible while it does so.
The once and future king of stylized hyper-violent video games is back. The mobile version of Mortal Kombat X, published by Warner Brothers Interactive and developed by NetherRealm, is now ready to download in the Google Play Store after a lengthy geo-limited soft launch. It features high-end graphics and a 2D fighting system based mostly on taps, swipes, charges, and other gestures, very much like NetherRealm's previous mobile fighters Injustice: Gods Among Us and WWE Immortals.
The basic structure uses collectible upgradeable "cards" as stand-ins for the iconic fighters, encouraging players to find and upgrade personalized versions of the over-the-top characters (as opposed to a more conventional static roster).
There's a new Marvel movie coming out tomorrow in the US. You may have heard about it - it's kind of a big deal. So what better time for a developer to release a new game featuring as many Marvel (comics, not movies) characters as possible. You've got to have something to do while you ignore the repeating video ad for Dave's Discount Family Insurance that plays before the trailers start up, right?
Marvel Future Fight, a free-to-play beat-em-up featuring more comic book characters than a jaded movie blogger can remember, has actually been out for a little over a month in a limited-market soft launch.
Apparently Blizzard isn't the only game developer that had a burst of inspiration after a late-night cable viewing of Kung Fu Panda. Taichi Panda is the first game from the American arm of Chinese publisher Snail Games. This dungeon crawler won't break the mold in any particular way, but it's a solid top-down action game with online multiplayer baked into its core mechanics. Oh, and there are fighting pandas in it.
One panda, to be precise. You choose from one of four pre-made characters to begin your battles: the titular Taichi Panda, a brawny monk-type who likes to fight with his hands, the Treasure Hunter, a pink-haired sneaky rogue, the Fox Mage, a pixie magic-wielder, and the Glorious Warrior, who is The Guy With The Sword.
Ubisoft seems to have an odd fixation with horse-themed mobile games. The publisher made an Android version of the inexplicably popular Howrse, a sort of equestrian-themed adaptation of free PC RPGs like Ragnarok Online. Now Ubi has created its own horsy mobile game, the innocuously-titled Horse Haven World Adventure.
It's terrifying. Completely, utterly terrifying. If H.P. Lovecraft and H.R. Geiger had some kind of genetically engineered offspring with too many initials, it would not come close to approaching the horror that lies beneath Horse Haven World Adventure. To look upon this game is to go mad.
No, not just because it's another fairly brainless free-to-play mobile game - which it is.
Modern Combat 5's release was hardly unexpected. After all, it's a sequel in one of the most popular franchises on Google Play. Nevertheless, it was a surprise to see the Gameloft title launch without a single in-app purchase in sight. In exchange, the publisher priced it at $7. Reasonable.
You might know ZeptoLab as the developer of the Cut the Rope games, but now you can also steal the gold in King of Thieves. This game is basically part action-platformer and part Dungeon Keeper. If that sounds both confusing and interesting, you can try it for free.