Kingdom Rush

Kingdom Rush Menu

Hey, tower defense game fans! There’s a pretty awesome tower defense game on sale for $0.99 in the Google Play Store right now. It’s called Kingdom Rush, which might sound familiar because I blogged about the browser version a couple years ago.

Kingdom Rush LevelI’ve only played the first few levels so far, but it works really well on my tablet and it’s a nice, polished game. Definitely worth the $0.99!

Get it on Google Play Kingdom Rush HD

Apparently, they released a sequel called Kingdom Rush: Frontiers on iOS earlier this summer, so if you have an iPhone or an iPad, you might want to give it a try, too. Hopefully they’ll release it for Android soon. 🙂

Gigabit Internet, AOE, and Bike Parking

A collection of interesting tech-related news from yesterday:

Gigabit Internet coming to Seattle for $80/month

Gigabit Seattle announced its speed/price plans on Monday (source):

  • 5 Mbps download/1 Mbps upload free for 5 years (thereafter, 10 Mbps download/10 Mbps upload for $10/month)
  • 100 Mbps download/100 Mbps upload for $45/month
  • 1000 Mbps download/1000 Mbps upload for $80/month

Unfortunately, I’m not in one of the neighborhoods that will be getting initial coverage, but I’m hopeful that I’ll have access to gigabit Internet soon. 🙂

Age of Empires is coming to Android and iOS

Microsoft announced on Monday that it is working on a mobile version of “Age of Emprires” which will be released by March of next year (source). AOE is one of my favorite games of all time, so I’m excited to see how this turns out. Wololo!

Japan has an amazing underground bicycle parking system

Okay, maybe this isn’t news, but I found out about Japan’s incredible space-saving underground bicycle parking system yesterday. Just take your bike to a parking machine, which will read a chip on the bike and store it underground automatically. When you want your bike back, tap a card to the machine and it will retrieve your bike in seconds.

Scribblenauts Remix

Though it has been available for Android via the Amazon Appstore since April, Scribblenauts Remix is now in the Google Play Store for $0.99.

Scribblenauts Remix

Scribblenauts Remix is a mobile version of the popular Scribblenauts puzzle game franchise in which players complete puzzles by summoning objects, limited only by their imagination and the thousands of items in the database.

I first heard about Scribblenauts via Scribblenauts Unlimited on Steam and all the hype it generated on the internet, so I was excited to try Scribblenauts Remix when it came out.

Scribblenauts: Super giant spotted pegasus
Super giant spotted pegasus

The graphics are super cute and I really like the creative puzzle-solving. You can even spawn a “super giant spotted pegasus” if you want. The puzzles themselves are simple yet amusing, like helping step-brothers become friends through their love of sports or helping a knight in armor get across a river.

Scribblenauts Remix is a fun, think-outside-the-box type of game that people of all ages can enjoy. And for only $0.99, it’s totally worth picking up.

Get it on Google Play  Scribblenauts Remix - Warner Bros.

Want more Scribblenauts? Here are the other versions of the game:

Humble Bundle with Android 5

Humble Bundle is out with its latest bundle: Humble Bundle with Android 5. Humble Bundles are collections of DRM-free video games and you pay what you want for them. As long as you spend more than the average purchase, you also get a few bonus games.

The six games in Humble Bundle with Android 5 run on Windows, OS X, Linux, and Android. You also get the game soundtracks and, as long as you pay at least $1, you get Steam keys for the games.

The Games

I played each of these games for a little while (some longer than others) on my Nexus 7 tablet.

Beat Hazard UltraBeat Hazard Ultra
music-powered arcade shooter

The essence of Beat Hazard Ultra is that it creates levels for you based on your music and then you shoot away until the song is done. A lot of people seem to like Beat Hazard Ultra, but it didn’t do much for me… and it can’t play music from Google Music, which was a bummer. Maybe I’ll try it out on my PC later to see if I like the experience more.

Dynamite JackDynamite Jack
stealth action game with bombs

In Dynamite Jack, you play as a captured space marine who is trying to escape the mines where he is forced to work. You place bombs to draw the attention of the guards, collect crystals to try to reduce time, and make your way to the next level. It seems okay, but not really the sort of game I’d want to play.

NightSky HDNightSky HD
physics-based action-puzzle game

The basic idea of NightSky is that you maneuver a sphere around various worlds using physics. The interface is simple and intuitive and there are occasionally mechanics like pinball flippers, vehicles, and reversing gravity to keep things interesting. I don’t usually care for dark designs, but I enjoyed NightSky and it makes a great mobile game.

Solar 2Solar 2
open-world space sandbox game

Solar 2 is easily one of my favorites in this bundle. You start the open-ended game as an asteroid and after you crash into enough other asteroids, you become a planet. As a planet, you try to get asteroids to orbit you and after a while, your planet supports life and you get ships to defend you from asteroids and other ships. Absorb enough asteroids and you’ll turn into a sun, and so on.  Super fun. I ended up playing a lot longer than I had planned. 😛

The next two games are unlocked if you pay more than the average (currently, $6.65).

Dungeon Defenders Second WaveDungeon Defenders
action RPG tower defense game

With Dungeon Defenders, you get Dungeon Defenders: Second Wave on Android devices, which has a hefty ~700MB additional data download when you first launch it. You also get non-mobile version of the game and all DLC (downloadable content). The game with all its DLC is $49.99 on Steam, so you’re getting a great deal by buying the bundle. I first played Dungeon Defenders on the PS3 a couple years ago and liked it. I didn’t care for playing it on my tablet; though. Although the graphics were great, I felt clumsy using the controls and the build phase took too long. It’s a good game; I just don’t think it works well for mobile devices.

Super HexagonSuper Hexagon
minimal geometric action game

Super Hexagon is a super fun, quick, challenging game. You guide a triangle around by moving it left and right and you try to avoid the incoming, rotating lines. It’s a simple idea, but it’s really tough! The games are very quick (I got tired of hearing “Game over!” all the time lol) and there are only two controls (left and right), which makes it a great mobile game. Super Hexagon is ridiculously simple, addictive, and challenging… and another one of my favorite games from this bundle.

There are less than 12 days remaining, so if you want to grab the Humble Bundle, make sure you do it soon!

Monopoly

This week, it was announced that there would be a change to Monopoly’s tokens. Monopoly fans from around the world have chosen a new token, a cat, to replace the iron token.

New Monopoly token possibilities
New Monopoly token possibilities

Fans voted on a handful of potential new tokens: robot, helicopter, guitar, ring, and cat. They also voted on their least favorite current token and it apparently came down to the wheelbarrow, iron, and shoe. I’m so glad the shoe pulled through; it’s my favorite. 🙂

I was cleaning up my tablet a week or two ago by uninstalling apps I wasn’t using. Before I uninstalled, though, I played the games to give them one last chance to redeem themselves.

One of these games was Monopoly, which I got from Amazon’s free app of the day a year or so ago. It only has an average rating of 3.0 in the Google Play Store, but it seems like most of the complaints are from people whose devices can’t handle the game (it runs fine on my Nexus 7 😛 ). Other complaints are regarding poor customer service (which one should expect from EA) and the AI which is “too hard” (you can adjust the AI difficulty level, though).

Monopoly app

It’d been a long time since I’d played Monopoly, so it was fun playing it again. The graphics and animations give the game a realistic, polished feel. It’s also fairly customizable; you can change some of the rules, the appearance of the “room” you’re playing in, etc. You can even play multiplayer, but I haven’t tried that out. It’s a decent app, but I’m glad I got it for free; I don’t think I’d pay $4.99 for it.

I wonder when there will be an update to reflect the new tokens. 😛

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

Looking for a fun, new game to play for Halloween? Last week, Swift Creek Games released our newest game: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow: Jar of Marbles III, which is currently featured in the Google Play Store.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow: Jar of Marbles III

This physics-based match 3 marble popper takes you through Washington Irving’s classic American ghost story about Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman. It has 3 game play modes, more than 70 objectives, and over 50 achievements to keep you engaged.

Sleepy Hollow ScreenshotThe Legend of Sleepy Hollow: Jar of Marbles III is available in both free-to-play and standalone versions on Android and Kindle Fire and is coming soon to PC, Mac, iOS, and web.

Although I didn’t do any programming for this game, I was involved with some of the game design decisions and testing.

Be sure to check it out! We would love to hear your feedback. 🙂

Update: Now also available on iOS, GameHouse, and Big Fish.

 

Unolingo

Unfinished Unolingo Puzzle
Unfinished Unolingo Puzzle

Yesterday, Amazon’s free app of the day was a word puzzle called Unolingo. It’s a cross between Sudoku and word games like Scrabble and crossword puzzles. I play Sudoku daily on an app called Enjoy Sudoku and I love word puzzles, so I definitely wanted to give Unolingo a try.

The game is pretty self-explanatory; you can jump right in to playing without reading instructions. You get to choose your difficulty level and are then given a 10 by 10 crossword grid made up of letters and 26 empty spaces. There are no clues. You just have to place each letter of the alphabet into the puzzle once to form words.

I like how quickly I was able to start playing. The puzzles are challenging, but it seems like they can generally be completed within 5-10 minutes, so it’s perfect for when you want some quick entertainment. My only complaint was that it prompts you to post your score on Facebook after every puzzle completion, but you can turn that off in the game settings.

Assorted Casual Games I Used to Play

I used to play most of these games at a call center job I had while I was in college. In between calls, we were allowed to do homework, study, read, play games, or whatever as long as there weren’t other jobs to do. Because I had to be able to drop what I was doing to answer a call at any moment, I had to find games that didn’t require my constant attention.

Shakes and FidgetShakes & Fidget

http://www.sfgame.us

Shakes & Fidget is a Flash-based role-playing browser game. You can go on quests to gain gold and experience, buy gear from shops, battle other characters, join guilds, and fight bosses in dungeons. The characters are pretty autonomous, though; they do their own fighting and you control their gear and tell them what to do. It’s not a challenging game, but it was a nice way to pass the time.

GodvilleGodville

http://godvillegame.com

Godville caught my attention when it claimed it was a massively-multiplayer zero-player game. I wondered how the heck it could be a zero-player game. Kind of like Shakes & Fidget, your character is autonomous, though Godville takes it to the extreme. You have very little control over your character’s actions. They fight things, go adventuring, buy and sell gear, learn skills, join guilds, adopt pets, fight other characters, etc. all on their own. As their god/goddess, all you can do is use your limited “godpower” to make suggestions, encourage and punish them, and resurrect them when they die. Godville is available as a mobile app and a browser game.

Lord of UltimaLord of Ultima

http://www.lordofultima.com

I was really excited when I heard about Lord of Ultima, a massively-multiplayer real-time strategy game. It is reminiscent of Age of Empires – you start with one small town and build an empire. New players’ cities are protected for the first week, but after that, other players can attack you. You can join alliances for protection, though, and you can trade goods with other players. I had a lot of fun playing Lord of Ultima for a while, but things became too difficult to manage once my empire got too big, so I gave away my cities and stopped playing. Lord of Ultima is done in JavaScript, rather than Flash, which I thought was pretty impressive.

Kingdom of LoathingKingdom of Loathing

http://www.kingdomofloathing.com

Kingdom of Loathing is a silly primarily text-based humorous MMORPG playable in web browsers. Unlike Shakes & Fidget and Godville, you directly control your character’s actions. Kingdom of Loathing uses a turn-based system and incorporates a lot of humor through word play, pop culture references, and goofy ideas. Players can complete quests, join clans, and fight each other in PvP combat.

Corporation Inc.Corporation Inc.

http://armorgames.com

Corporation Inc. is a browser-based strategy game. You start with a little money and the goal is to build the world’s most profitable company. You can build offices; hire, fire, and promote workers; add decorations to improve workers’ moods; etc. It’s a fun game, but, like Lord of Ultima, it becomes difficult to manage once you have a large corporation. I recently started playing a similar game, Tiny Tower, on my phone. Tiny Tower is different in that you can only build your tower vertically and you can move the workers (called “bitizens”) between different jobs. Bitizens also have dream jobs and vary in how good they are in certain types of jobs. So if you like Corporation Inc., be sure to check out Tiny Tower (or vice versa).