As a die-hard and stubborn football fan, I know nothing about basketball except that you have to bounce the round thing on the floor at regular intervals. But I do know quite a bit about Android gaming, like the fact that a $7.99 game that includes up to twenty bucks in in-app currency purchases will be dismissed out of hand by both frugal free-to-play gamers and traditionalists who prefer to pay once for the full experience. So prolific publisher 2K Games is getting the worst of both worlds with the pricing structure of NBA 2K16.
The latest yearly roster update of the NBA game that doesn't come from EA includes a full version of the MyCareer mode from the console games, which was apparently lacking in previous releases.
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.
Amazon has had some pretty great deals as part of its Free App of the Day, but apparently that's over now. The prolific retailer is replacing it with Amazon Underground, which includes "over $10,000 of apps and games that are actually free." Specifically, Amazon is giving away paid apps and in-app purchases with an agreement that reimburses app developers based on the amount of time the apps are actually used.
Last month the beta version of Minecraft for Android added a ton of new features, most notably a port of the player skin feature that's become such a popular part of the original Minecraft game. Just a couple of weeks later Mojang has instituted the changes in the public version of Minecraft: Pocket Edition. Go check it out on the Play Store now if you've already purchased the game, or buy it for $7.
Skins are a big deal. Not only do they allow the greatest amount of player customization after, well, making stuff in Minecraft itself, they also represent the game's first post-purchase revenue stream.
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).
What do you get when you combine Back to the Future-style hoverboards with a quasi-anime art style and runner mechanics? The answer is Sky Punks, the latest game from Rovio's publishing arm. No, it's not created by the Angry Birds folks (as the Play Store app description suggests) - the developer is Fathom Interactive, whose previous Android entries have been largely unremarkable. But with a big name in the mobile gaming world backing them up, they're hoping for a hit with this stylish and surprisingly varied runner.
At first glance Sky Punks looks achingly derivative. You move your chibi racer between three lanes to collect coins, jumping over or sliding under obstacles and shooting or blasting through them with occasional power-ups.
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.
Final Fantasy Record Keeper has been out for a bit in Japan, and now it's opening up to a larger market, overwhelming even more players with heavy doses of unapologetic 90s nostalgia (and some from the early 2000s). The game lets you relive Final Fantasy highlights using a combination of your favorite heroes shrunken down into cute, little sprites.
Have you ever argued over whether Cloud and Squall had the cooler sword? Do you consider Ronso prettier than Wookies? Can you actually tell all of the Cids apart? This game might just be your dream come true, as long as you're not put off by the F word.
There's a new Transformers game available in the Play Store, and it falls into the increasingly popular online battle arena genre. In TRANSFORMERS: Battle Tactics, you must build a team of Autobots and Decepticons to best your enemies on the battlefield. However, it's free-to-play, so is this one more than meets the eye? Nah, it's pretty much what it looks like.
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."