It's a good day to be an NVIDIA SHIELD owner. Valve's Android ports of PC shooter classics Portal and Half-Life 2 just dropped in the Play Store for $10 a pop. They're only for the SHIELD (even other devices with the Tegra 4 chipset aren't invited to the party), which is a bit of a mixed blessing - these games really require a full controller to play.
While there is no shortage of puzzle and arcade games on the Android platform, it can be easy to get drawn into the mainstream hits like Angry Birds and Cut The Rope. The first time I stumbled onto a "darker" game, I had downloaded World Of Goo as part of a Humble Bundle, and was instantly mesmerized by its graphics and sounds. There was something hauntingly beautiful about it, and I ended up on the Play Store looking at the "Similar Apps" and "Users also installed" sections.
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 frontier version of Sim City, another toy-flavored defense game from Chillingo, an 8-bit falling game, and a Breakout clone that spends too much time on the Internet.
It says it all, really.
PC gamers will recognize the logo for Valve's much-loved science fiction shooter Half-Life 2 emblazoned on the bar, which is the iconic starter weapon for the game. "What Would Gordon [Freeman] Do?" and NVIDIA's SHIELD logo, along with NVIDIA's signature green color, makes this a not-so-subtle indication that the game is coming to the Android-powered SHIELD at some point.
Rebel Twins, the developer of Daddy Was A Thief, is back with another zany Android game. Aliens Drive Me Crazy puts you in the shoes of a young lad who is understandably upset when aliens decide to invade. He grabs his nearest weapon, hops in the car, and speeds off. Despite the difference in concept, the gameplay is largely similar to Rebel Twins' previous work. Players hop between floors by swiping up and down, collecting coins, overcoming foes, and rescuing innocent Earthlings in the process.
Sometimes you can just tell something is evil from the silhouette. Giant scorpion? Evil. Flying lizard-thing with long talons? Also evil. There are all sorts of evil silhouettes to kill in Dark Lands, a game that took a run at Kickstarter earlier this year before pulling out to go with publisher Bulkypix. Now you can grab it on Android. Well? Goblins, orcs, skeletons, and trolls aren't just going to slay themselves.
So, we've designed games, built malls, managed soccer teams, run farms, and that's just scratching the surface of the Kairosoft game catalog. This developer has found a formula that works and it's not about to stop now. The newest title in Kairosoft's stable is Magazine Mogul, and I'm sure you can guess what it's about.
Someone has to report the news in this small town, and that's the core of gameplay in Magazine Mogul.
Google's recent foray into Maps-based monster catching has proven that even full-grown Android users love them some Pokemon. Maybe that's why storied publisher SEGA has decided to make its own entry in the monster-catching genre. But why, oh why, is the core mechanic in Dragon Coins based around those little quasi-gambling quarter-shooter arcade games?
Try to follow along here: in Dragon Coins, your party of anime-style monsters is represented by little drawers in a shelf.