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 unique top-down shooter, a reverse Mario game, a 2D zombie sniper, a group-based shooter, a cartoony racer, and a digital RPG board game.
Monument Valley remains one of the finest puzzle experiences on a mobile device, but it's unfortunately somewhat short. There's a little more to love today with the release of Ida's Dream, a chapter that was originally created for a charity promotion on iOS. You can get it for free if you've already purchased Monument Valley—no extra IAP required.
Amazon's latest app giveaway is worth more than $50 and will remain available for the next week. As you can see in the hero image, some of the headliners include The Bard's Tale and Weather Live, though there are several more that may interest you. And while the super-popular Monument Valley has disappeared from the promotional page, it's free too. This is bigger and better (and longer-lasting) than its typical free daily deal, though it isn't their best ever. Beyond those already mentioned, you might want to pay special attention to Quell Memento and Alarm Clock Pro.
Here is the full list of what's on offer, all of them free for now:
Square Enix, listen to me: stop making Android ports. Please. You're really bad at it. All of these games, most of which are decades old and extremely expensive by mobile standards, are embarrassingly lacking in polish and features.
Take the latest, Dragon Quest VI. By all accounts it's a classic JRPG, and one that many never got to play in the west since the original Super NES version was only released in Japan. On Android it's fifteen bucks. It comes with zero Google Play Games features (no cloud saves!), has no compatibility with Bluetooth controllers or Android TV, and it doesn't even work in landscape mode.
Pity poor Sonic the Hedgehog. The guy is basically the Dallas Cowboys of the video game world: after gaining almost universal appeal in the 90s, his victories over the last few years have been few and fleeting. But SEGA isn't giving up on its blue mascot, if only because he's probably the only marketable franchise that isn't a Kickstarter campaign or a hyper-sexualized murder machine. So here we are, with a new Sonic game that sees one of the most iconic platforming stars in the world... aping mobile endless runners.
To be fair, Sonic as an endless runner makes a lot of sense, and Sonic Runners (a bit on the nose, ain't it?) does a good job blending the genre's standard single-tap controls with classic Sonic elements.
Yep, we're reviewing the iOS version. Don't worry, we're not planning on making a habit of this. Fallout Shelter is one of the only mobile games in recent years to garner true attention from the mainstream gaming press, and it has skyrocketed to the top of the App Store since its release. It is an exceptional case. Since an Android port is currently under development and the ETA unknown, I felt it would be best do a review now while the game is still fresh in the minds of many people, instead of waiting months to review something that would already be old.
Baseball fans who recall more pixelated ages of gaming will remember R.B.I. Baseball as one of the more consistently good MLB franchises, and it's been revived for mobile platforms. Surprisingly, it's a true premium game - five bucks gets you the entire experience, complete with licensed teams, stadiums, and player likenesses, all without an in-app purchase in sight. It's an odd and happy thing to see come out of a pro sports license.
The 2015 edition of R.B.I. Baseball is more than just a roster update. This year's version includes 3D stadiums for each team that mirror their real-world counterparts, roster management in full simulation style or the 16-player lineup you may remember from the original games, "over 1000" pro ball players with accurately modeled statistics (and no BS leveling up), and the ability to save and resume full games.
Activision's Geometry Wars series is one of the more popular casual shooters ever developed and really needs little introduction. Instead of writing something tiresome, I'll just let you watch the trailer for the newest entry in the franchise, Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions.
Warning: Viewing The Following Video Is Not Recommended For People With Epilepsy, An Aversion To Techno, Or Who Find The Mass Slaughter Of Innocent Shapes To Be Objectionable.
The big news here is that the franchise has finally released one of their games on mobile platforms. It was first made available a couple months back on iOS, but as of today, it is also available for Android.
Developer Digital Tales has been hyping its latest Superbike game for a few weeks, and today it's finally been released on Google Play. SBK15 is a simulator in the general sense, and it tries to bring a feeling of realism to its motorcycle races. The tracks are based on real tracks, the bikes are based on real bikes, and the riders are licensed likenesses of world championship racers, complete with authentic sponsor logos plastered to their helmets.
And don't get me wrong, SBK16 definitely has some good points. The graphics are appealing without being too taxing, the sense of speed is decent, and the tilt controls actually make sense in the context of leaning into a curve.
The new game Xenowerk takes place in a mysterious underground science laboratory. It's not clear what sort of research was being conducted there, but whatever it was resulted in an infestation of gross mutants. It's up to you to eradicate them.