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.
April was a big month for Android apps, especially if you like yours to come directly from Google. We've also got admirable entries from big web names like Dropbox and IFTTT, as well as surprising applications from smaller developers. This is the cream of the crop of Android apps for last month, plus a few honorable mentions, in no particular order.
Good grief, Google, you guys took your sweet time with this one.
Instapaper is a popular service for saving web pages to read later, one that competes with the likes of Pocket and Readability. Today the app hit the big 3.0, so I'm going to take a moment to highlight what's new. The headlining feature is text highlighting, the ability to save a section of an article to read or share with others later. The app groups all of these snippets together in an accessible location.
A Google Search update is usually an occasion to celebrate – not only do we get new Google Now cards, but the Google Now Launcher can also be augmented with new features and tweaks. But all was not well when Google Search 3.4 rolled out. Users of the popular Xposed GEL Settings Module (XGELS) found that it no longer worked. The developer was pessimistic at first, but now it's back.
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.