Roguelike Card Game ‘Pirates Outlaws’ Now Available on iOS and Android

Pirates Outlaws () is a new roguelike card game from Fabled Game Studio that you may have seen floating around the pre-order section in the App Store, and now it’s graduated from pre-order status to full release. Well, sort of. It’s currently live in some parts of the world but hasn’t quite arrived in the US App Store just yet, but that should be happening within the next few hours if previous pre-orders are anything to go by. What’s important is that Pirates Outlaws looks really cool. As stated it’s a roguelike card game where you play as a pirate captain who must recruit a team of other pirates to go on excursions to exotic locales plundering loot, new cards, and valuable relics. You won’t go unchallenged though, and you’ll have to partake in turn-based card battles to reap those rewards. Here’s a trailer.

Pirates Outlaws features 50 outlaws to battle and 20 unique bosses to defeat across three different chapters with more planned for updates. There are six different pirate captains to start off with that each have their own unique abilities and pre-made deck of cards, and there are more than 250 additional cards to collect throughout the game. The game costs 99¢ on both iOS and Android, but it does contain in-app purchases, and I’ll be curious to see just how that is implemented into the game as a whole. Whatever the case I’m very interested in checking out Pirates Outlaws and love the look of the game in the trailer. If you’re on iOS you can grab it with the link below and if it’s not quite out of pre-order in your area yet it should be in the next couple of hours. It looks like the version for Android on the Google Play Store is available already no matter where you are, and whichever version you end up with be sure to drop by the forum thread to share your thoughts about it.

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/03/05/pirates-outlaws-now-available/…

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Crime Scene Cleanup Game ‘Serial Cleaner’ Coming to iOS

Polish developer iFun4All, who you may remember from their mobile releases Red Game Without A Great Name ($1.99) and Green Game TimeSwapper ($1.99) from a few years ago, released Serial Cleaner on desktop and consoles back in July of 2017 with a Nintendo Switch port launching the following November. Serial Cleaner is a top-down 2D stealth game where you play as a “cleaner” who goes around cleaning up crime scenes for the mob. Disposing of bodies, cleaning up blood, and destroying evidence is your job but you’ll need to do it without being spotted by the cops. All of this is decked out in a really cool art style and a heavy ’70s vibe, and Serial Cleaner has received a ton of positive praise from its releases on other platforms. And now in partnership with East2West Games, iFun4All’s most popular game to date is heading to iOS. While there’s no mobile trailer just yet, the Nintendo Switch trailer should give you a good idea of what Serial Cleaner is all about.

We always joke on our podcast about how many games that are big hits on Steam make their way over to mobile and it gives us a chance to finally experience them. Not that we couldn’t play games on Steam, it’s just that we rarely do, and since we play games on mobile all day long it’s a lot more likely that that’s how we’ll experience any particular game. Sure that typically means we’re a year or two behind the times for lots of popular games, but I have a big enough backlog as it is so that’s not really a problem for me, you know? Anyway, Serial Cleaner is exactly one of those games that I’ve heard a lot of good things about but figured I’d never get around to playing it if it wasn’t on mobile. And now that it IS coming I can’t wait to see what all the fuss has been about. No release date has been specified but East2West says the iOS version of Serial Cleaner will be coming “soon” and we’ll be keeping an eye out for it.

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/03/04/serial-cleaner-iphone/…

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‘Letters & Sodas’ is a Tile-Sliding Puzzle Mixed with a Word Game, Coming March 28th

We’ve all played a tile-sliding puzzle before, right? I’m not talking about a mobile game, but those physical games that are a grid of different tiles with one blank spot, and it was your job to slide the tiles around to either form a complete image, or put numbers in order, or stuff like that. Here’s a gif from Wikipedia if you’re lost as to what I’m talking about. Anyway, I loved those puzzles when I was a kid, and we’ve even seen developers bring the experience to the digital world with various mobile games over the years. But Frosty Pop Corps. is doing one better and mixing the tile-sliding puzzler with a word game with their upcoming Letters & Sodas.

As you can see, your job is to slide the letters around the board and ultimately spell whatever four-letter word the game is asking you to. You’ll have the expected constraints of space on the game board, but since this is a digital game you also need to contend with more video gamey things like tiles that need to be unlocked, bombs, and even portals. There’s also a limited number of moves you can use for each word so you can’t just go sliding willy nilly until you get it right. Letters & Sodas will initially ship with 130 levels, but Frosty Pop is hoping to be able to update the game post-release and if it’s popular enough would like to add all 4,000-ish four-letter words in the English language. I always enjoy the stuff from Frosty Pop, and I love both sliding puzzles and word games, so I’m really looking forward to Letters & Sodas when it launches later this month.

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/03/04/letters-sodas-trailer-and-release-date/…

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‘Skylanders: Ring of Heroes’ Review: Who Exactly Is This For?

The Skylanders are back again with Skylanders: Ring of Heroes (Free). I’ll be honest here. I never managed to play any of the original Skylanders titles. I’m still not entirely sure how the original games play, but as a retail worker back in its heyday, I spent a lot of time restocking shelves with its colorful character figures and wrapping security tags around the more sought after ones. Yes, these things were prime shoplifting targets. My point here is that Skylanders: Ring of Heroes may be my first time messing around with its mix of quick-witted and brutish characters, but it’s certainly not my first time seeing them. So, is mobile the next logical step for Activision’s child magnet? Sadly, yes. But that doesn’t mean it’s a good game.

Skylanders: Ring of Heroes is a turn-based RPG, though not in the traditional sense. Rather than taking your time to issue orders and watching the action unfold before doing it all again, combat runs on a queue system with a constantly regenerating resource dictating how often you can strike. You take 3 of your chosen Skylanders into battle against enemy teams of various sizes and spend mana to queue your choice of attacks. Each Skylander can bring 2 attacks, each with varying mana costs, into each fight with other passive abilities further augmenting stats and strategy. You don’t select your attacks and hit an Execute or End button to kick things off, you’re just expected to think on your feet to efficiently spend your ever-regenerating mana to blow through waves of enemies until the stage or level comes to a close.

Skylanders Ring of Heroes review

That’s the entire game, honestly. The frankly overused base building mechanic seen in countless other games returns, but it looks thrown in as an after-thought and won’t manage to distract you from the core experience for very long. Expect to fight in gauntlets for varying rewards and do very little else.

What we’re looking at here is essentially Summoners War recreated with Skylanders assets. I say recreated because as a title released back in 2014, mobile graphics have come a long way in what is now close to 5 years. The core gameplay remains the same, but Skylanders: Ring of Heroes is a far more visually appealing title in today’s world with high-quality character models, flashy attack animations with some dramatic cut-ins for added drama, and a base building segment that isn’t forced to display sprites instead of actual 3D models to save the game burning through your battery in 10 minutes flat.

It’s difficult to properly review a videogame like Skylanders: Ring of Heroes. It’s clearly not targeted at me. But as a long-time fan of turn-based RPGs, I can say that the core gameplay is fairly solid thanks to the complex strategies enabled by each Skylander have more skills and abilities than the two they can bring into battle. But at the same time, it’s that fast-paced combat and dizzying amounts of customization menus that make me think this particular take on the franchise might not be a good fit for its prime target audience.

Skylanders: Ring of Heroes review

The gameplay loop is simple enough that younger children should be able to buckle down with relative ease, but I can …

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Best iPhone Game Updates: ‘Mortal Kombat’, ‘Fortnite’, ‘ELOH’, ‘Pocket Build’, and More

Hello everyone, and welcome to the week! It’s time once again for our look back at the noteworthy updates of the last seven days. As usual, lots of big and/or popular games got new content this week, along with a handful of less-frequently seen titles. I’ve gathered up a nice little bunch for you to scan over while you devour your Hot Pockets or Cinnamon Toast Crunch or whatever the devil you kids are eating for breakfast these days. Of course, you can keep an eye out for updates yourself using AppShopper or by participating in the TouchArcade forums. This weekly summary is just here to fill you in on the things you might have missed. Let’s go for it!

Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, Free

Hey, it’s time for another Animal Crossing Pocket Camp update already. I’m sure the developers are looking forward to the new console game’s release to help generate some new content and interest in this game, but for now, we soldier on as-is. The big new addition this time is the Happy Homeroom, which is like a small-scale version of that Happy Home Designer spin-off from a while back. There are also a bunch of improvements to the game’s UI to make it easier to get at things like the Fortune Cookie Shop. Bug fixes? Yep, some bug fixes.

Toon Blast, Free

Yes, it’s the requisite free-to-play match-3 update for the week. Toon Blast is the biggest non-King hit in this genre, and I couldn’t even begin to tell you why. But that’s hardly necessary for this article, which really only seeks to inform you of a list of games that got updates in the last week, of which this is one. It has 50 new levels themed around gardening because why not? Having said that, my work here is finished. I now move on.

Brawl Stars, Free

Hey now, it’s-a Brawl Stars, get the game on, go play. Like… like the song from Mystery Men that became the song from Shrek, you know? It’s very popular with a certain demographic. And so is this game! Flawless, Shaun. Absolutely flawless. Now segue into the update. Real smooth-like. There’s a new game mode here called Siege where you have to fight over parts that are then used to build a robot which in turn will be used to smash enemy bases. Nice. And a new Brawler is joining the line-up soon! His name is Carl. He has a pick axe.

Gardenscapes, Free

I won’t stop including these games in the round-up until Austin the butler gets into Smash. You know my terms, Mr. Sakurai. Um, anyway, what’s new in Gardenscapes? Apparently a wedding story line with Alex and Jason. You get to help make the wedding dress and everything. This update adds in a couple of new elements in the match-3 portion of the game, and sets a couple of other events rolling as well. Austin for Smash. Do it.

Star Trek Fleet Command, Free

If there’s one thing you can say about Star Trek Fleet Command, it’s that it is certainly a game that exists and can be downloaded on your iPhone or iPad. Probably …

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‘Radiant One’ Episode 2: The Secret Review – Does The Subscription Model Work?

I truly enjoyed Radiant One (Free)when it came out; in my review I gave it 4.5 stars and praised it for the narrative involving mental illness, astral projection, and the supernatural. The developer then announced the game was turning to a subscription model, and I cringed. Based on what I played though – which is now episode one, The Awakening – I wanted to give this new model a chance. The future of gaming is kind of up in the air, with some companies wanting to turn to a Netflix-like model, so it’s not an unreasonable thing to do. The second episode, The Secret, is now available, and I was anxious to dive into it (ironic, based on the narrative).

Jared has already detailed the subscription model, but briefly: the subscription is $2.99/month. If you bought the first episode, the second should unlock for free. For a limited time you can purchase the first two episodes for $4.99; otherwise, each episode sells individually for $5.99. This is where I had my first problem: I had to pay for a subscription to access The Secret, despite already owning the first episode. Still, I did it for the sake of… I don’t know, science? I also have a hard time with change so try to push through that, which is what I’m trying to do here. Each episode takes an hour or two to play through; personally, I find $2.99 is reasonable assuming one episode is actually released per month; otherwise, for an hour of playtime, $6 seems a tad expensive.

This episode centers around Rachel, who wakes up in a mysterious mansion filled with dark shadow monsters. She needs to avoid the monsters while solving puzzles with little to no mistakes, or the monsters will take over. The game is essentially a point-and-click adventure with puzzle elements. Rachel struggles with anxiety over being perfect at her job, and seems to sacrifice fun for the sake of it. Prior to her arrival at the Mansion, which was a last-minute call from work, she was in Hong Kong.

Whereas The Awakening involved astral projection, The Secret takes its cues from time travel. The supernatural is still heavily present, as mental illness manifests in physical forms that make life, and mere existence, seem impossible at times.

Radiant One: The Secret is completed through environment puzzle-solving. Think escape room plus shadow monsters. For example, in the first level Rachel has to find the key to a drawer (the right key, as there are several) to pry wood off a closet, take a spray bottle from inside to extinguish a fire and crawl through the fireplace to an alcove. The level continues like that, as do the later ones. The further you progress, the more difficult it becomes to avoid the monsters that have manifested from your mind.

At times, Rachel has to concentrate to do something. A white bar shows up at the bottom that you have to try and follow by touching the marked area and staying over it – the mechanic it reminds me most of is fishing in Stardew Valley. I call it the concentration bar because it appears when Rachel needs to focus all her energy on one task, …

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Captain Marvel (and Nick Fury) Take ‘Marvel Contest of Champions’ Higher, Further Faster as New March Characters

Whether you’ve been playing Marvel Contest of Champions (Free) religiously for several years or come and go from the fighting game, you likely already know that its developers keep it supplied with a steady stream of new characters. Fairly often, the latest champions are tied into a Marvel film or other big happening of some sort, so with Captain Marvel due in theaters soon, you probably shouldn’t need any help from the thinking face emoji to determine who is arriving in the game this March if you don’t already know.

Marvel Contest of Champions

If you guessed Captain Marvel herself, Carol Danvers, you got it on the first try. And yes, there are multiple versions of Carol already in the game and likely even on your roster, but this is a movie -influenced iteration, with her own set of abilities and an Event Quest that plays off both the core conceit of Marvel Contest of Champions and some classic Marvel characters to explain why there are so many Carols flying around. To further avoid confusion, the pre-existing Danvers is now Captain Marvel (Classic), and she’s wearing a mask while the new one is not. A small but important difference.

Marvel Contest of Champions

In any case, the new Captain Marvel has a Poison Immunity passive, plus Super Strength and Energy Absorption, both very true to the character. But her most interesting abilities are Binary Ignition, which activates when she stores up enough Energy Charges and increases her Attack power and Armor Break percentage while allowing her to deal extra energy damage, and her Binary Durability signature ability. That one makes her temporarily indestructible and gives her a regeneration buff to boot. Fitting for Earth’s mightiest mortal.

Marvel Contest of Champions

(Whoops, that is the DC Captain Marvel. Mea culpa.)

You can look for Captain Marvel the first full week of March, but joining her later in the month will be the man with the eyepatch himself, Nick Fury. The SHIELD leader (sometimes, anyway) also plays a part in the Battlerealm Under Siege Event Quest, along with getting his own Nick Fury’s Recon Initiative quest line. Because you don’t become the top super spy without being able to get people to gather some of your intel for you.

Marvel Contest of Champions

Comic fans will really appreciate Nick’s signature, Life Model Decoy. Think you’ve knocked Fury out? Nope, that’s simply his LMD, so he returns to full health along with a Fury’s Fury buff and Stun Immunity. Before you can cry out “OP!” you should know that the Infinity Formula only goes so far, and Nick begins to degenerate quickly until he is down to 30 percent health or less. It’s still a nifty trick that you’ll enjoy. Unless you’re playing against him, in which case obscenities are more likely to follow.

Marvel Contest of Champions

Fury also has some nice-looking visual effects, like an energy shield in the shape of the SHIELD logo when he blocks. Plus he’s Nick Fury, darn it, which means he’s simply cooler and more in the know than you. He’s slated to hit Marvel Contest of Champions on March 21. No word on Goose the Cat, but we can always dream.

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/03/01/captain-marvel-and-nick-fury-take-marvel-contest-of-champions-higher-further-faster-as-new-march-characters/…

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NetEase’s ‘LifeAfter’ Hits the App Store

For some reason, I recently decided to get back into watching the TV show Walking Dead which has kicked off an entire bender of consuming other zombie-related content. (Like, did you know 28 Days Later has a sequel? Apparently I missed the bus on that one.) So, in my life, I’ve got a zombie TV show, more zombie movies than I could ever watch in one lifetime, which leaves zombie games as the next thing I need to get super obsessed with. Thankfully, NetEase just released LifeAfter (Free) which is set in a post-apocalyptic universe where a virus has caused almost everyone to turn to zombies- In this world, the only way to survive is through mastering a surprisingly in-depth crafting system where you’ll be harvesting, collecting, and combining all sorts of materials to create all the tools (and structures) you’ll need to survive.

While you’re doing all your hunting and gathering to survive, you’ll be completing all sorts of other missions to try to make some sense of the zombie hellscape you’ve found yourself in. Interestingly enough, like a lot of zombie scenarios, zombies aren’t your only threat. It turns out humans can be pretty terrible too. When you meet other survivors, you really never know if they’re going to attack you and try to take your stuff, or offer you a new mission and a share of some loot. Oh, and unlike the zombies of the Walking Dead universe, these zombies actually move pretty quickly and are quite threatening- Particularly when you encounter larger boss-style zombies. In a way, this component of LifeAfter reminds me a lot of Left 4 Dead.

One really neat thing that immediately stands out is when you start the game and create your character, you also get a customizable animal companion. You get to name your dog and everything, and this animal companion sort of works like having Dogmeat following you around and helping you out in a Fallout game. While we’re making game comparisons, if you’ve spent any time playing NetEase’s Knives Out (Free), you’ll be right at home with how the game controls and how the menu systems work. Whether intentional or not, it seems like they’ve borrowed quite a bit from Knives Out (which is a really good thing).

What’s really surprising about LifeAfter is that it’s free. This is the kind of game that had it been released in a different time period of the App Store, it would’ve easily been $9.99 all day long. Since we live in a world where few things make sense in mobile games anymore, LifeAfter is free. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first downloaded LifeAfter, but we’ve been pleasantly surprised by how full-featured this game is. The crafting components are weirdly cool, and survival games are super in fashion right now so LifeAfter is pushing a lot of our buttons. Definitely check it out.

Sponsored ContentThis article is sponsored content written by TouchArcade and published on behalf of NetEase to promote the latest update to their free to play zombie survival game LifeAfter. For questions or comments, please email ads@toucharcade.com

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/02/28/neteases-lifeafter-hits-the-app-store/…

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‘Pigeon Wings STRIKE’ is a New Endless ‘Pigeon Wings’ that’s Looking for Beta Testers

What started out as a small two month project between two indie developers back in the summer of 2015 actually ballooned into a two YEAR project called Pigeon Wings ($2.99), which launched back in August of 2017. Pigeon Wings is a side-scrolling racing game that plays like a cave flyer mixed with a shoot ’em up, and it’s extremely awesome. We loved it in our review, chose it for our Game of the Week when it released, included it in our Top 100 Games of 2017 list, and I picked it as one of my personal favorites of 2017. So yeah, it’s pretty good. Unlike most cave flyers Pigeon Wings is a level-based game, but a few months after its release an update added a cool endless mode to the game, which fans had been requesting. The only problem was that, according to the developer’s own analytics, hardly anyone played that endless mode. Enter: Pigeon Wings STRIKE, a brand new fully-featured endless follow-up to Pigeon Wings.

Pigeon Wings STRIKE will include many of the features that the developers had wanted to include in the original game’s endless mode but didn’t have time to implement. It’ll feature brand new unlockable characters like Cunningham the hotshot hamster and Presto the “literal fish out of water.” There will also be a local multiplayer mode so you can party up with friends IRL and get your Pigeon Wings on. Finally Pigeon Wings STRIKE will feature more enemies, more layout parts, more achievements, and is basically a full sequel to the original game. Pigeon Wings STRIKE is only weeks away from release but the developers could use some beta testing help to iron out any last minute issues, so if you’re interested in that then head over to our forums and register your interest and look for this one to launch in the very near future.

from TouchArcade https://toucharcade.com/2019/02/28/pigeon-wings-strike-beta-testing/…

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SwitchArcade Round-Up: ‘Pokemon Sword’ and ‘Pokemon Shield’ Revealed, ‘RemiLore’ Review, ‘Ape Out’, ‘Deltarune’, and Today’s Other New Releases, the Latest Sales, and More

Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for February 28th, 2019. Another month has passed us by, full of exciting news and new releases for the Switch. March is looking to be another big month, at least in terms of eShop releases, and it’s only going to pick up from there. Today, we’ve got a look at the new Pokemon games, the big list of today’s releases, some sales information, and a review of RemiLore.


‘Pokemon Sword’ and ‘Pokemon Shield’ Were the Stars of the Pokemon Direct

Yesterday’s Pokemon Direct ended up being about exactly what everyone suspected it would be about: the latest entries in the mainline Pokemon series. Dubbed Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield, they take place in a fictionalized version of the United Kingdom. The three starter Pokemon were revealed, and we also got to see some footage from the games. The games will launch worldwide simultaneously later this year, and are currently available for pre-order on most popular online shops.


RemiLore ($39.99)

RemiLore is a bit of an odd beast. Its production values are quite good, with nice graphics, full voice acting, and an overall heavily-polished feel. It definitely comes off like something from at least a mid-sized publisher rather than an indie. Mechanically, however, it’s about as straight-forward as it gets. You hack, you slash, you find some loot that hopefully includes a better weapon now and then, you gather up resources and trade them for upgrades, and do whatever you have to in order to get from the start of each stage to its exit. And there really isn’t a lot more to it than that. Combat is extremely simple and only two steps away from just hammering away at an attack button. There’s a strange gap here; a decidedly small, focused concept is dressed up in some impressively fancy clothes.

I’ve been doing this kind of work long enough that I can easily poke at RemiLore‘s weak points. The combat isn’t completely brainless but it begs for a little more variety and flexibility. The voiced dialogue is sometimes excessive, and the somewhat-randomized order conversations appear in sometimes leads to bizarre outcomes like a character asking what another character’s brothers are like only to immediately after ask if said character has any siblings. The procedurally-generated levels have that familiar issue where chunks start to repeat and little about them feels satisfyingly designed. It’s probably, probably a little too easy for its own good. And above all, it definitely has an issue with repetitiveness. Not enough enemies, not enough enemy patterns, not enough variety in the stages, not enough moves for your character.

And yet, I somehow really enjoyed this game. It’s not that those negative points didn’t bother me sometimes, because they did. But the gameplay was just engaging enough, the characters just interesting enough, and the bizarre arsenal of loot just intriguing enough that I couldn’t stop playing until I made it to the end. It’s silly and colorful and light-hearted in just about everything it does, and that is such an unusual thing in a game like this that it gave the whole thing the layer of novelty it needed to patch over its shortcomings. …

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