I remember being 6 or 7 years old and anxiously waiting for my cousins to visit us so I could take my shiny Nintendo NES console from its box, hook it to our 14" Sony TV, and play with them a few rounds of Super Mario Bros or Contra. I don't think we ever got past the third or fourth world on one run, but we did use the secret warp pipes to move to later worlds.
Apparently, Super Mario Bros was released the same year that I was (ha!) in 1985, and it celebrated its 30th birthday yesterday, September 13. To wit Google has decided to give all of us a nostalgic easter egg when performing a search for "Super Mario Bros." Whether it's from a mobile or your desktop browser, you'll see a knowledge graph card donned with Mario's signature question mark brick.
Now that Niantic Labs has left Google behind, we've all been wondering what its next big game will be. Ingress has managed more than 12 million downloads, but dare I say the just announced Pokémon GO will have even more. This game (coming in 2016) will have a similar augmented reality premise to Ingress, but instead of capturing portals you're capturing Pokémon.
Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.
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Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.
Find Dining: Restaurant Finder
This week's roundup is brought to you by Find Dining: Restaurant Finder from HandyApps. The dining discovery aspects of Google Maps still leave a lot to be desired - usually you can count on an address, a review or two, and (if you're lucky) operating hours.
Another mobile-oriented Humble Bundle is live, and you know what that means. Yes, time to get some games for cheap and support charity at the same time. There's no particular theme to this bundle as there have been with the last few, but the selection looks solid.
It's a holiday here in the US, and that means there are plenty of things on sale in real life and on the internet. It also means that most people are doing things that don't include staring at a screen all day. Bloggers are not most people, though. So here we are with some app and game sales.
If you've been on the Internet this week, you've probably seen the marketing blitz for the new line of toys for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The crown jewel among innumerable action figures and LEGO sets is the miniature BB-8, a customized version of Sphero's ball toy with Star Wars paint and a "head" that bobs around and stays on top of the ball as it rolls along. Though the BB-8 is mechanically identical to a regular Sphero, you'll need a specialized Sphero app on Android or iOS to actually play with the thing.
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.
What are you to do in a world overrun by evil physics-beasts? Take the fight to them with your "slingshot-esque gift" of course. The odds are not in your favor, but you are David., the chosen polygon with the rainbow slingshot thing. At least it'll be a good fight.
The Deer God was kickstarted about a year ago and was subsequently released on Steam. We've been waiting on the Android release ever since. Android users got an early alpha as part of a Humble Bundle way back in late 2014, but now the final version is ready. You can pick it up in the Play Store for $6.99, which is 30% off the final price.
Few games have had the cultural and philosophical impact of Goat Simulator. I mean, what are we all in a metaphysical sense if not poorly coded virtual goats? To further explore the bounds of the human-goat paradigm, Coffee Stain Studios has released Goat Simulator MMO Simulator. See, it's a simulator that simulates an MMO.