February is the shortest month of the year, and it also happens to contain the biggest Android-related tech conference, Mobile World Congress. Between the two of them, you might think we'd be short of good games this month. On the contrary - February has given us one of the better crops of high-quality and diverse Android games we've seen in quite a while. Here's our pick for the top seven, in no particular order, with some honorable mentions thrown in for good measure.
It has been about a year-and-a-half since game streaming service OnLive abruptly shut down operations and fired its staff. The company was sold off to an investment firm that kept the lights on, but it was unclear until now what was to become of OnLive. Now OnLive has returned with a new approach to selling you games in the cloud and new management that aims to avoid making the same mistakes twice.
If there's one thing I can say for Out There, it's that this title does not sugar coat the harsh reality of space. Things go wrong that are totally out of your control, and sometimes that means you're going to die. If that was literally the only thing I had to say, this game would be pretty lame. In fact, there's a lot going on in Out There. This is a sci-fi choose-your-own-adventure game that doesn't fall back on laser blasters and explosions to create tension – it's all about survival.
Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.
Puzzle Defense: Dragons
Today's roundup is presented by Puzzle Defense: Dragons from Herocraft.
Microsoft has already dabbled around with expanding the Xbox Live experience to mobile devices, but if a recent report from The Verge is to be believed, the company may be about to ramp up its efforts significantly. Our good friend Sources, who is familiar with Microsoft's plans, claims that Microsoft is building a platform that would extend Xbox Live functionality to Android and iOS. Instead of using Google Play Games or Apple's Game Center to track achievements, find other players, and compete with one another, you would be able to use Xbox Live instead.
Were you excited to hear the Google Play is getting an expanded list of game categories? Well curb your enthusiasm - the switch to the expanded list was tentatively scheduled for "February," but as one reader noticed, the new categories haven't been implemented yet. The relevant Play Store support page has been modified, and now it says that the change will come sometime "around March."
Switching from the old list of just six categories to an expanded 17 (which contain the original six plus more specific sub-genres) would be a boon to both Android users and developers.
Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a fancy space combat simulator, a gilded physics game, a simple snowboard trick-fest, and an endless runner with a twist.
The term “old school” gets thrown around a lot in gaming these days, but Touch Foo’s Swordigo seems to positively invite comparison to classics like Ghosts & Goblins and Zelda. With 2D platforming on the surface and an action RPG underneath, Swordigo might be confused for a Super NES game if it weren’t for the 3D graphics. And while it doesn’t reach the lofty heights of the classic franchises it imitates, it’s a challenging and worthy game if you’re in for the long haul.