You'd be forgiven for forgetting that Google used to have an app called Sky Maps on the Play Store. As the title points to, it was a nice digital planetarium that you could carry around your pocket back in the Froyo and Gingerbread days of Android. Like many similar apps, Sky Map used your location and the direction you were pointing your phone at to map the space elements around you, from stars to planets to constellations and more. In January 2012, Google open sourced Sky Map, but development had ceased a while before, in August of 2011.
It looks like someone at the Sky Map Devs team has found the lost github repository and decided to give the app a breath of life. Read More
When you stare into the infinite void of space, salted with stars so vast and distant that they defy the human mind to imagine them, you can't help but wonder at the scope and majesty of the universe. Then you start to wonder how to make some money out of it.
Cosmonautica is the latest in a long line of space trading sims, the stellar ancestors of the old "pirate math" games from the 80s. And yes, buying and selling goods across star systems serves as the core of the game, with profits enabling you to upgrade and arm your ship, hire new crew, and expand your business. Read More
Remember Rogue Squadron? Nintendo 64 and Gamecube owners, past or present, know what I'm talking about. This series of Star Wars games had players fully immersed in intergalactic battles that were stunning for the time. Alongside Star Fox, Nintendo consoles were the place to be for top-notch space shooters.
Edge of Oblivion: Alpha Squadron 2, the sequel to—you guessed it—Alpha Squadron, again unapologetically hearkens back to that era. Ship designs are similar enough to tempt a lawsuit, and the opening stage may have you feeling like you're speeding through the skies of Hoth (on one of its clearer days). The game contains two story-driven campaigns containing over 80 missions altogether, which involve blasting ships out of the sky and destroying key land-based targets. Read More
The rumors of Google buying a stake in SpaceX started percolating a few days ago, and now it's official. Google and Fidelity have invested a total of $1 billion in the private space firm, which gives them about 10% share. SpaceX says the new funding will go toward the development of reusable rocket technology and satellite manufacturing.
Quite a while has past since there's been any Android-related news for Galaxy on Fire fans. The developers of the series that showed many gamers just how beautiful space could be and let them explore it on their mobile devices surprised a few folks when they said that the next entry would deviate from their action-oriented roots and transition into a strategy-focused MMO. Excuse me, make that a free-to-play strategy-focused MMO.
The Galaxy on Fire: Alliances came to iOS earlier this year. Now after spending two years being tested in Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, the game is available in the Play Store for worldwide distribution. Read More
Let me tell you about my life a little over a decade ago. I bought a PC strategy game called Hegemonia (AKA Haegemonia) on a whim in 2002. I played the campaign mode of that game no fewer than four times. It was fantastic. Now it's on Android, and this may be the last you hear from me until early next year. That is, of course, assuming it's still fun to play on Android.
Science fiction buffs are getting very excited about Interstellar, the upcoming movie from director Christopher Nolan (of The Dark Knight and Inception fame). To drum up a little more excitement, Paramount has created and published a mobile game tie-in. Interstellar is a free download for Android 4.0, and unlike a lot of licensed games, it has no in-app purchases... so you can save your money for Coke and popcorn. Unlike even more licensed games, it's got some unique ideas and a solid presentation.
The movie follows a group of space explorers headed for a black hole. The Android game isn't the usual cobbled-together shooter or endless runner (or even a Bejeweled clone) you might expect from a blockbuster movie. Read More
There's a minor movie trope where an inexperienced character sits down at the controls of a complex vehicle, confident in his or her ability to handle the situation. Hilarity, as decreed by the ancient comedic formulas, ensues. ALONE... will make you fell like that poor sap, as a light-speed space capsule blasts across the screen maneuvered by some of the tightest, twitchiest touch controls I've ever seen. ALONE is a $2.47 with no in-app purchases.
The game comes from Laser Dog, developers of the simple and incredibly frustrating PUK. Like the previous title, it's a 2D action game, but that's where the similarities end. Read More
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 space puzzler, a space arcade game, a space RPG... and a game about walking silly. Without further ado:
The original Eliss, a popular combination of puzzle and twitch mechanics, never made it off of iOS to run free in the green fields of Android. Read More
There have been rumblings recently that, adding to its other (perhaps more far-flung) efforts to improve Internet access around the world, Google would eventually deploy its own fleet of satellites. Today, those rumblings got a little bit closer to reality as Google announced its agreement to acquire satellite imaging company Skybox for $500 million in cash.
Skybox's journey so far, according to the announcement on its own blog, has been about revolutionizing "access to information about the changes happening across the surface of the Earth." Having already deployed the world's smallest high-resolution imaging satellite, the company says it's already made "great strides." Read More