Gaming has come a long way over the past several years. What was considered "top notch" graphics not long ago is no longer impressive in the slightest, and each platform revision aims to bring faster, more realistic titles to the forefront of gaming.
Personally, I think the largest jump has taken place on mobile devices in the last two years or so. As far as Android is concerned, NVIDIA has essentially paved the way for more powerful titles to hit the scene on mobile devices – games like Portal and Half-Life 2 were the best PC gaming had to offer not long ago, and now you can play them on SHIELD Portable or SHIELD Tablet.
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 an interesting roguelike card game, a slightly insane space fighter, a Very Special adventure game, a much more interesting adventure game, a Ubisoft tower defense title, and a new take on Tetris puzzles.
Google Play Games has supported online multiplayer for a while, but now it's even easier to play against your friends who happen to be within gloating distance. Play Games now includes support for multiplayer with people who are physically near you.
After Star Wars, Marvel, and The Walking Dead, it seems like just about any property is fair game for Zen Studios' expanding pinball franchise. The latest addition is South Park, Comedy Central's foul-mouthed animated show now in its 18th season. As usual with Zen Pinball expansions, you can get the two new 3D tables as either a stand-alone paid app or as in-app purchase expansions to the original game. The separate app is $4, or each table is $2, so it works out the same.
Do you want to relive the adventures of The Lord of the Rings trilogy? Of course you do! It's not like reading the original books, watching a blockbuster film series, playing through countless console titles, and devouring fan fiction could adequately immerse anyone in the world J.R.R. Tolkien created six decades ago. So here's a mobile game that you can install on your Android device and take with you absolutely everywhere.
If you were a fan of "sim management" games in the early 2000s, you probably played at least one version of RollerCoaster Tycoon. Next year Atari will revive the franchise with RollerCoaster Tycoon World on the PC, but for now the official fourth installment of the series is oddly limited to mobile, arriving about six months late on Android. RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 uses the same basic structure of the original 1999 game, albeit with remixed limits and annoyances for the free-to-play format.
Humble Mobile Bundle 9 may now be just the fix for residents of America's mountainous Northwest who venture out to the warmer, southeastern portions of the country and suddenly find themselves homesick. The current bundle has been updated with two games that kind of take players on a virtual trip to the Rockies: So Long, Oregon (explicitly) and Mountain (not so much). These two titles will go out to anyone who pays over the average, including those who already have.
I love Sentinels of the Multiverse, even though my friends and I lose nearly every time we attempt to stand up against Baron Blade and the forces of evil (don't get me started on Omnitron). There's just something about this comic book-inspired card battle game that makes me want to give it my all and work with my teammates to resist the waves of damage being heaped upon us by villains and the environment alike.
Shortly before jumping into the set top box race, Amazon unveiled that it was ready to bring exclusive games to its platforms. Since then, Amazon Game Studios has released a number of titles, with Sev Zero launching with the Fire TV, followed by Saber's Edge and To-Fu Fury for Fire Phone. Now we see three more that are currently in development: CreepStorm, Til Morning's Light, and Tales From Deep Space.
Machinarium has been around for a few years on virtually every platform, but now we're finally getting something new (to Android) from Amanita Design. Botanicula shares a gameplay and art style with Machinarium, but it's a completely new adventure about five tree-dwelling friends who must save the last seed from their home tree, which has become infested with nasty parasites.