It was only three months ago that Android got SEGA's latest entry in the obligatory kart racing genre, Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing. Now the sequel, which came out a year later on the consoles, has graced our platform only a day behind iOS. But don't reach for your wallets just yet: there are some serious issues with Sonic Racing Transformed that might mean it's not worth the $5 entry fee.
Happy New Year, Android gamers. If you're lucky enough to get today off from work, no doubt you're wondering how to spend your vacation and/or recovery time. We've got a few humble suggestions: the seven best games of the dozens and dozens that were featured on Android Police last month. This eclectic mix of titles should have a little something for everyone. Here are our favorites from December, in no particular order, with a few runners-up thrown in for good measure.
December 25th, 1993. A fresh-faced and (mostly) innocent little boy wakes up and rushes through his breakfast to make sure he beats his little sister to the Christmas tree. Underneath he finds four gifts: a Sega Genesis game console, RBI Baseball, Disney's Aladdin, and Sonic The Hedgehog 2. Twenty years later, that boy, no longer little and considerably less innocent, can relive countless wasted hours on a 5-inch phone screen. Sonic 2 is now in the Play Store.
Oftentimes many companies take the easy way out and produce a simplistic endless runner to shoehorn any popular character into. But in the case of Sega's Sonic Dash, it's a match made in heaven. Endlessly running is what this blue hedgehog has always done in his free time, and to be honest, this style of gameplay isn't all that different from what's available in many of his latest mainstream titles. This release frankly makes sense, and as far as runners go, it's actually pretty good.
American football fans, sit this one out. Sega's latest game is geared towards the other kind of football, the one that, you know, people actually play with their feet. This popular series turns soccer fans into managers of their own professional club. From the confines of their Android device, players can manage most aspects of running a team for $9.99. Yeah, that's a bit pricey for a mobile title, but calling the shots doesn't come cheap, even virtually.
That may not be entirely fair. The last two entries in Sega's kart racing franchise have been well-received on consoles, even putting aside the question of why the world's fastest hedgehog needs any kind of vehicle at all when he's racing.
SEGA's Crazy Taxi was a very welcome addition to Android's gaming lineup last month, and no less so for a wide array of controls. The game came with standard on-screen controls, tilt steering, and support for HID and MOGA controllers. It was strange, then, that the game was incompatible with the controls on NVIDIA's SHIELD. Other SEGA games had already been updated for the launch. But today Crazy Taxi was updated to version 1.2, complete with SHIELD-friendly controls.
Dateline: 1999. A 12-year-old Jeremiah Rice spends every cent of his allowance at the local Pizza Hut's dingy game room, trying to perfect an S-Class run on the brand new Crazy Taxi arcade unit. Another fourteen years have passed, and SEGA's ode to irresponsible driving isn't exactly the technical marvel it once was, but it's every bit as fun. And a single fiver will let you play as much as you want on Android.
At GDC earlier this year, we learned that Sega ported the original Sonic the Hedgehog to Android, giving a new generation of gamers a chance to experience the game that kicked off one of the industry's largest franchises. The port, which finally showed up in the Play Store earlier today (several weeks late), comes with widescreen support and features exclusive to mobile versions, such as the ability to play as Tails and Knuckles.
Here's hoping all of our readers are having a peaceful Mother's Day. If any of you gave your mom a Google Play Store gift certificate (and your mother is particularly fond of action games or weather widgets) you might point her towards this story for a few bargain-priced suggestions. Sega has a couple of their Android ported games on sale, and Minecraft is discounted over on Amazon. The surprisingly powerful eWeather HD/Radar HD is also on sale, along with the gaming-focused remote access suite Kainy.