Look, I've got nothing against the pixelated graphical style, sometimes erroneously referred to as "8-bit." But for the last few years it's often been used as a crutch for developers who can't be bothered to make truly good 2D graphics. That doesn't apply to Sword of Xolan, the latest game from developer Alper Sarikaya of Manuganu fame. The environments, enemies, and main character have enough definition that you can actually see what's happening on screen, and the excellent animations make the world come to life in ways that developers could only dream of back in the old SNES days.
It's Wednesday, which means there should be some Google app updates at some point. Nothing much has happened yet, but here's a good way to pass the time while waiting—get some new apps and games. We've assembled some deals to help you justify the cost.
If you're a fan of the super-popular top-down MOBA genre (think Dota, League of Legends, and Heroes of the Storm), you'll want to sit up and take notice of a little game called Vainglory. This mobile interpretation of the well-known formula has been built from the ground up for touchscreens, and the experience has been praised on iOS since its launch back in November. It's available for free today on the Play Store.
Vainglory doesn't make an attempt to hide its inspiration. If you're not familiar with the standard MOBA formula, it's basically a shorter and more action-packed version of a real-time strategy game where each player controls a single unit.
Remember Bomberman? You know, that cute little maze-based puzzle game that got infinitely more fun when you played it with friends? Right, well imagine a Bomberman game... set in a schlocky slasher movie. That's basically BRAWL, the latest console pilgrim to come exclusively to NVIDIA'S SHIELD Tablet and SHIELD Android TV. It's also notably the first Android game we've seen on the Play Store with an "Adults only" 18+ ESRB rating, though that might be a mistake - the game's trailer (which looks like it's taken from the PS4 version) brands it with the slightly less salacious M rating.
In BRAWL, you take control of one of eight characters that seem to have popped out of a Halloween party sponsored by Hot Topic.
You've heard of Borderlands because of the original multiplayer-centric first-person shooter that appeared on consoles and the PC. But there's a decent chance that the reason you're thinking about it now is the result of TellTale's point-and-click adventure game 'Tales from the Borderlands' (and no, not just because you're reading this article). This title has simply been a rejuvenating way to dive back into the cel-shaded world, and now that episode three is available, players have another reason to return.
Episode one came in December, with number two following in March. The latest installment places Rhys and Fiona in the jungles of a terraforming facility as they continue their quest to find a lucrative Vault.
You know, it's not as if cartoons based on video games are new. Mario. Sonic. Mega Man. Excuuuse Me Princess Zelda. The thing is, I don't think I can recall any of those ever being good. Fruit Ninja developer Halfbrick Studios seems intent on following in the steps of Rovio and ZeptoLab by adapting its most popular game into a TV series. Interestingly, the company is partnering with YouTube to do it.
The kid-focused Fruit Ninja series will be thirteen episodes of eleven minutes each, which is a sizeable commitment even for relatively inexpensive CG animation. According to the Australian company's press release, the series will be aimed at 6-to-10 year olds and their parents, and it will be accessible from the specialized YouTube Kids app and the various Fruit Ninja games on Android and other platforms.
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. Without further ado:
Silver Bullet looks like an unofficial game for the Underworld series of movies...
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.