In A Day in the Woods, you help to protect Little Red Riding Hood, who apparently lacks the sense to avoid woods infested with wolves and bears while she wanders haphazardly from cottage to cottage. Well, Red doesn't actually move at all - she stays stationary on her hexagonal puzzle tile, and you move her and the adjacent tiles to get her to the house on each level. You're given a limited amount of moves per stage to hit par, and you'll also have to grab the flowers that grow before clearing the stage.
It's more complicated than it looks. Certain tiles like rocks and trees can't be moved, and you'll have to keep Red at least two tiles away from a bear or wolf to avoid mauling - there are no handy lumberjacks to take them out.
Real-time strategy seems to be all about hundreds of actions per minute these days, if you can even find a strategy game that's not a clone of Clash of Clans or League of Legends or Army of Alliteration. SPACECOM takes a different approach: it's a minimal sci-fi game where your captured star systems are just solar diagrams, your ships and fleets are a series of triangles, and there's a definite lack of guns or explosions.
If you've ever played Wing Commander: Armada, SPACECOM plays out like a real-time version of the strategy portions of that game (minus the full 3D space battles, of course).
Google acquired WordLens a while back, eventually integrating its visual text translation technology into the Translate app. It only supported seven languages at the time, but today's v4.0 update adds a lot more, and Google is showing off the visual translation feature with a nifty Google Translate vs. “La Bamba” video.
Francisco Franco, of franco.Kernel fame and several other root applications, has just released a new media gallery browser for Android: Focus. Designed by our very own Liam Spradlin (#halleliam), Focus brings a big, erm, focus on design, usability, and efficiency. It's decked with Material Design elements and animations, but it still keeps a unique look and approach to image, gif, and video viewing.
Focus' differentiating feature is that you can see all of your images, literally ALL of your images, from the app's main screen. No need to delve into submenus, open folders, go back, and try again until you can find that one cat photo you took three months ago. Photos are organized by collections, which seem to follow the folder hierarchy on your phone and SD card, and thumbnails are scrollable horizontally to display every media item a folder contains.
Microsoft surprised Android developers last year with the launch of a brand new emulator designed for performance and features that aren't available anywhere else. While the initial Preview release only included an image for KitKat, subsequent updates introduced an expanded set of emulator images and some valuable new features. While a high-speed emulator is certainly compelling, many developers still didn't adopt it because it had to be downloaded and installed alongside a very large Visual Studio package, not to mention it was also frustrating to set up for use with other IDEs. Last week, Microsoft unburdened the emulator and released it as a standalone download along with step-by-step instructions to set it up to easily run with Android Studio and Eclipse with ADT.
The Galaxy S6 has wireless charging. The HTC One M9 does not. There's a pretty good reason for this: metal interferes with the current methods for wireless charging, so you can't have your fancy metal phone and charge it (wirelessly) too. Engineers at Qualcomm have a solution to that, at least according to the company's latest press release. It's a newly-announced functionality of the existing Rezence wireless power standard, which is different from Qi and PMA.
According to Qualcomm, the Rezence/WiPower standard operates at a frequency that's more forgiving of extra material in between the contact and the receiver, including everything from metal to empty space.
The Moto X Style isn't the only new flagship that Motorola revealed at its press conference this morning. The new Moto X Play is basically a "Maxx" version of the phone, with a smaller 1080p screen, but a gigantic 3630mAh battery (plus Turbo charging) for what Motorola calls "48 hours of mixed use." The price will reflect the slightly lower specs, since Motorola claims that this phone will be "$300-400 cheaper" than flagship phones from the competition.
You won't have to fumble around with remembering the year with the newest Moto X. Or should I say, Moto Xs. This time the company is introducing multiple versions, and each has a name that sets it apart from the crowd. One Moto X has style. Moto X Style.
The Moto X Style is an updated version of the 2014 Moto X, the device we expected from Motorola. The screen makes a predictable jump up to a 5.7-inch quad-HD display. It also makes the leap to a less predictable 21MP camera on the back of the device. A 5MP one resides on the front.
Motorola's press event is underway, but various portions of the company have already revealed the star of the show: the new Moto G. The 2015 version of Moto's mid-range device is a mix of old and new, keeping some of the more affordable portions of the phone intact while upgrading some of the most important elements. Specifically, the 2015 Moto G offers optional extra RAM and storage and improves its predecessor's lackluster camera to a 13-megapixel model.
Here's the breakdown: the phone keeps the 5-inch 720p screen from the 2014 version, but upgrades the internals with a Snapdragon 410 processor from Qualcomm and a 13MP rear camera (5MP on the front), the same camera as the Nexus 6, plus a color-balancing flash.