You may have noticed that we cover a lot of games here. That means that there are lots of developers who contact us hoping for some coverage... and some are more deserving than others. I literally cannot count how many half-hearted endless runners we've been shown, and it's only gotten worse since the rise and fall of Flappy Bird. So when someone shows us a game that turns the entire genre on its head and lets you play against those annoying running jerks, we stood up and took notice.
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 runner game with some Portal inspiration, another runner that should please physics buffs, and a game that delivers exactly what it promises.
The original Rayman Jungle Run was one of our favorite games of last year, and easily in the top tier of running and platforming games available on Android. That title was a mobile tie-in to the Rayman Origins console game, and now that Rayman Legends is out, Ubisoft is back for another mobile installment. Rayman Fiesta Run builds on the original with new levels, new powers, and new gameplay elements.
We'll do our best to stay away from spoilers for the newly-released Die Hard movie (Happy Valentine's Day!), but the companion endless-runner game Fox just released to the Play Store isn't doing us any favors on that front. The app—which is somewhat shadily referred to as simply "Die Hard", trading on the name of greater movies—takes inspiration from titles like Temple Run. Just, not enough inspiration. (Note: some screenshots are very slightly spoiler-y, so if you're still planning on seeing the movie and you're a purist, you might want to wait to hit up the source link.)
One of the first things you'll notice about this game versus other endless runner titles is that it's in landscape mode.
It's surprisingly hard to make a mobile game, or at least, a mobile game that's worth playing. Mobile developers are still in their infancy, at least compared with their console and PC counterparts. So when someone manages to release a fun, polished game that works well on smartphones and avoids some of the more glaring pitfalls of the platform, we sit up and take notice. Such is the case with Roller Rally: Snake Pass, an Android port of a popular iOS title from MilkyTea.
Endless runners a la Temple Run are fast becoming the default genre for mobile games, and with good reason. Their one-touch play style is perfect for touchscreens, and the short levels work well for bite-sized sessions. That said, it's always nice to see a little innovation, and iOS pilgrim Roller Rally has that in spades. In addition to a competitive racer format, it's got great graphics and tight controls.
If you've ever played the console snowboarding game SSX, you'll be on familiar turf here.
We've seen more and more endless runner-style games show up in the Play Store, and, up to this point, they have all seemed basically the same. Enter Subway Surfers, a fun and whimsical take on the runner genre that just made its way to Android from iOS.
In Subway Surfers, you play the part of a delinquent kid named Jake who's running from an overly-grumpy inspector and his dog. You have to jump, flip, and grind from track to track on your hoverboard, picking up coins and avoiding trains as they pass by.
Remember when Angry Birds came out, and suddenly a ton of games popped up based on flinging things at other things in a physics simulation? Well, now it's the running game's turn to get a million "variants". Agent Dash is just the latest in a series of games that have come out centered around dodging stuff while your character continuously runs forward, apparently unable to slow down. The Eames-era style, though, certainly makes this one a looker.
Temple Run could possibly be the most anticipated game to come to Android since... well, ever. We've seen fake after fake after fake hit the Android Market in an attempt to garner downloads from unsuspecting folks looking to grab this iOS hit, and the Temple Run team took to its Facebook page to warn users of these fakes and announce that a real version is on its way. Now, we finally have a release date for the real deal, and it's coming on March 27th.