We've heard very little out of Google internal team Niantic Labs. Before today, their sole public presence was Field Trip, a mash up of Google Now and various hyperlocal points of interest. The team'' latest creation, Ingress, defies description: it's a virtual reality game in which players are tasked with going to real-world locations to harness a fictional energy source. Also there are two "teams" and every player in the world is one one or the other.
There are plenty of games in Google Play these days, but I sometimes feel like developers forget to code in the fun. Games are supposed to be fun, right? And what's more fun than shooting anything and everything in your path with a rapidly rotating assortment of weapons? Not much, if you ask me. With that in mind, Expendable: Rearmed has a lot of potential. This is a port of a classic top-down arcade shooter from the Dreamcast, and it is all about destruction.
If you're into indie games, chances are you've heard of Waking Mars by now. If you haven't - check it out, this is one seriously awesome puzzle / platformer mashup with an epic story and amazing soundtrack. It actually just hit the Play Store, too, after being available on Android exclusively through the Humble Bundle that went live last week (still up now).
So, why buy it for $5 through the Play Store instead of the pay-what-you-want Humble Bundle?
Cold Beam Games' Beat Hazard Ultra, the fascinating rhythm-based shooter we covered a few days ago, officially came out of beta and into the Play Store today, offering to bring with it all the bullets and enemies you can handle while you supply the music.
For those who missed our initial coverage, Beat Hazard is a bullet hell-style shooter that uses your own music tracks to control just about everything in the game, from the frequency of enemy attacks and their movement patterns to the rhythmic pulse of your own weapons.
Much of the platforming genre is based on nostalgia: nostalgia for games like Super Mario World, Donkey Kong Country or Sonic the Hedgehog. These titles dominated consoles and earned themselves legions of fans along the way. An entire sub-set of mobile games is based around recreating that magic, especially when it comes to gameplay.
Pizza Boy is one of those titles. Its premise is simple, like most games of its type tend to be: you're a pizza delivery boy looking to get a particular pie back from a bird who has stolen it.
Fans of Spacetime Studios - the firm behind Pocket Legends and Star Legends - make ready your thumbs, because the company has released a limited beta version of its newest game, Arcane Legends. For the time being, the game is only available to users in Australia and Canada, but is expected to be released to the masses sometime around the week of November 19th.
The Hunters: Episode One is a new game on the Google Play Store that looks to appeal to fans of the XCOM, Jagged Alliance, and Final Fantasy Tactics series. You take control of a team of mercenaries in turn-based missions which will earn you money upon completion. You can use that money to upgrade your squad and complete contracts that refresh every day. You can also purchase in-game currency with real money, as well.
It's hard to be a free to play app in the Google Play Store. With so many games throwing in-app payments into the faces of their players, it's tempting to follow along with them - if the money's good, why not? However, in the pursuit of cash, gameplay might suffer. On one hand, you want people to pay money, but on the other, you (ideally) don't want to ruin the experience they have if they don't.
There's no shortage of emulators for older gaming consoles on modern mobile platforms. The latest addition to the list is PPSSPP, a PSP emulator that self-admits to being a work in progress. Of course, there are a couple of things you should know up front: for starters, it's possible this won't last long on the Play Store, since emulators tend to have a pesky problem with legal and policy gray areas.
On the Venn diagram of gaming genres, shooters and rhythm games rarely intersect, with the exception of some oddball titles like Space Channel 5. But with Beat Hazard Ultra, shooter fans and music junkies now have something that they can agree on. With success on iOS, Steam, Xbox, and PS3, developer Cold Beam has created a game with stunning visuals and an impressive tie to music that everyone will love - their own.