Most strategy games have you working as some kind of commander-god, floating over the battlefield and handing out orders to nameless minions while building up your stronghold. In the PC strategy game Mount & Blade, you move and command your party, capture bases, and expand your territory... but you're also a fully-controllable warrior, dishing out punishing blows against your opponents right next to your carefully raised army. Mount & Blade: Warband, the second game in the PC series, is now available for the NVIDIA SHIELD and other Tegra 4 devices.
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 Grim take on platforming, a quiz game revolving around the Chromecast, and a detective-themed adventure puzzle game.
It has been a long, hard week and you deserve some relaxation time. Well, I'm assuming you do. If you've been slacking off all week, please disregard. Go pay full price for your apps. Everyone else, read on.
Nvidia wanted to wow us when it unveiled the Shield over a year ago at CES 2013, so naturally it pre-announced a bunch of games for the device. One of the titles mentioned at that event has only now arrived on Android. Rochard is a sci-fi platformer that was originally developed for the PlayStation Network and Steam, but now it's in the Play Store for $6.99.
Free-to-play games make us nervous. Let's face it, there's no shortage of them available for Android, and a sizable number sacrifice gameplay in their quest for riches. The original Royal Revolt was an exception. It didn't cost a dime to download, and the entire experience was enjoyable even if you opted out of buying any of the in-app purchases. Now the sequel is available in Play Store, and hopefully it keeps the tradition alive.
The Stig isn't your average racer. Actually, the character is. Hidden behind the same black visor that prevents us from knowing who is behind the wheel of any racecar before their helmet comes off, the character is both no racer and every racer at once. What does this matter? It doesn't, really. Here's what does - despite its name, Top Gear: Race The Stig isn't actually a racing game. Instead, it's a pretty straightforward endless runner driver.
The folks at game developer Mediocre have given us such classics as Sprinkle and Granny Smith, but now it's time to break some stuff. Smash Hit has come to Android with neat physics and compelling gameplay. It's a good opportunity to get some of that aggression out too.
Smash Hit is equal parts on-rails shooter and physics simulation. You coast along, approaching various glass barriers. You have to tap to launch balls that break the glass to clear your path.
If you've been craving a game of Trivial Pursuit but can't manage to get your friends together, you may want to check out one of the newest additions to the Play Store. QuizUp is a slick and fast trivia game with a focus on head-to-head multiplayer. The easy matchmaking, varied topics, and impressive presentation have made it a hit on iOS, where's it's maintained a 4.5-star rating.
The game is very simple: log in via Google+, Facebook, or email, select a category, and you'll be automatically matched with a random player who's near your skill level.
February is the shortest month of the year, and it also happens to contain the biggest Android-related tech conference, Mobile World Congress. Between the two of them, you might think we'd be short of good games this month. On the contrary - February has given us one of the better crops of high-quality and diverse Android games we've seen in quite a while. Here's our pick for the top seven, in no particular order, with some honorable mentions thrown in for good measure.