Posts Tagged ‘ipad’

I think I can say that I’m a little obsessed when it comes to the original Plants vs Zombies game. I became so addicted to the garden defense gameplay to the point that I had to own the game on every platform in my possession including my iPhone, iPad, and Xbox 360. I almost purchased it on PlayStation 3, but I was able to calm my gardening urges. With that said it looked like my obsession would finally calm down, but all of that would soon change when a certain sequel would arrive on my iPad and iPhone. Plants vs Zombies 2. The Crazy Dave in me has once again resurfaced as my obsession to defend my lawn against the endless zombie horde is back. Why? Because I’m crazy!

Plants vs Zombies 2, from PopCap Games, is a free-to-play game available exclusively on iOS devices. Wait a minute! A game published by EA is free? Did I just step in to the Twilight Zone? EA and free are two words that never go together. There’s got to be a catch. Well believe it or not there is no catch, no pop-up screens demanding money, or lite version of the game. Plants vs Zombies 2 is considered a “freemium” title where I can play the entire zombie defense game without spending a dime, but there are options available in the store for me to spend my hard earned money for some new plants or upgrades if I choose to, however it’s not required.

Just like the original game, Plants vs Zombies 2 still had me eliminating the zombie horde by using my army of plants and endless sunshine against them. Basically, it’s the same addicting game that I’ve been playing for the past couple of years. Just like the old saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. While the original game had me defending my home, the sequel had me going back in time to destroy the zombies in places including Ancient Egypt and The Old West. Each of these new stages looks colorful and fun, and I also like the Super Mario Bros. style overworld map for stage selection.

With a new game comes new plants to choose from. I did have some favorites to mix things up on my battlefield with my peashooters and sunflowers. I had a blast with the Bloomerang allowing me to hit zombies with boomerangs, the Bonkchoy which threw punches, and the Coconut Cannon shot coconuts for some big damage. While those plants were fun to use, the one I enjoyed the most was the Snapdragon. Any plant that can shoot fire across three rows is awesome in my book. Also added to the game was plant food which is obtained from killing the glowing zombies. Using plant food on one of my plants granted them momentary beefed up abilities to help take down a large wave of zombies.

While the gameplay is addicting and fun, there was one thing I didn’t like and that had to do with the store. One of things I noticed in the store was some plants that can be used in the game for a fee. These old favorites in including the Snow Pea, Jalapeño, and Squash would be really useful but they’re costly. I guess losing some helpful plants is the trade off between having a free game, and one that would cost a bit of money. Then again I do like some of the new plants so I probably won’t miss them that much. I can always play the original game.

Plants vs Zombies 2 is more of the same, but this same is still addicting and fun with tons of replay value. It’s a game where it doesn’t matter what skill level you are, because it’s casual enough for anyone to pick up and play, and have a good time. I didn’t care about the story, but I still love Crazy Dave and his antics. The zombies are also humorous and at times can put up quite a challenge. The best part about the game is that it’s free, so there’s no reason for anybody to not download this game.

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Developer: PopCap Games
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: Free

Celebrating it’s tenth anniversary Rockstar Games brings back my favorite Grand Theft Auto game of all time. Vice City. In my opinion, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is a mashup of Goodfellas meets Scarface. The other part that makes it so great is the fictitious Miami setting during the 1980s. I was hooked from the opening minutes as I just drove down the streets of a fictional neon lit South Beach to the club in the center of town. I even stole a police car, crashed vehicles, beat up a few bystanders, and created some random chaos and had a lot of fun doing it. I loved this game when i first played it on my Playstation 2, and now it’s on my iPad. Watch out Vice City because I’m back! Let me re-introduce you to Tommy Vercetti.

PROS:

The Story
Unlike Grand Theft Auto 3, Vice City features a more fleshed out story featuring Tommy Vercetti (Ray Liotta) at the helm. The mafia hitman is sent to Vice City to get a slice in the cocaine business for Liberty City boss Sonny Forelli when all of a sudden everything goes wrong. Now without the money and the drugs Tommy needs to find a way to make things right, and maybe in the process pull a Tony Montana and run the town. I really love all the angles that are played out in this game from drug lords, club owners, and even various gangs controlling their own piece of the city. Tommy makes Claude (the main antagonist from GTA 3) look like a low level errand boy. I had Tommy rising in power and creating an empire as I took control of the city and even buying a mansion similar to what Tony Montana had in Scarface. The story is awesome even though it seems to have been played out in many movies.

Celebrating Everything ’80s
One thing that made Grand Theft Auto: Vice City so unique is the fact that throughout the game I was able to point out so many ’80s references. I grew up in the ’80s and seeing references to Scarface, Knight Rider, The A-Team, Miami Vice, Rambo, The Village People, and so much more was really cool. The city itself was a reflection of everything ’80s with all the neon lights all the way down to the random people on the street with how they dressed and acted. Cars reflected their ’80s style and when I jacked a car the music of that decade was blaring into my speakers. I absolutely loved it.

The Soundtrack
One of my fondest memories of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City was when I was strolling through the streets and I came up to an unsuspecting cop, stabbed him, and then jacked a car. While getting chased by the police the radio played “Cum On Feel The Noize” from Quiet Riot. The song fit so right with the chase which was awesome. Throughout my experience with the game I would flip around the various radio stations jamming out to all the songs as well as the hilarious DJ chatter and commercials. Sometimes I would just sit around for an hour or two just to listen music and do nothing in the game. Maybe I should have bought the soundtrack CD instead. In my honest opinion, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City’s ’80s soundtrack is my absolute favorite of the series.

Doing Whatever I Want
What makes the Grand Theft Auto games so much fun to play are the moments where I go off the beaten path of the main storyline. Driving around the city jamming to ’80s music, acquiring property, civil missions (fire, police, taxi), rampage missions, getting dances at the strip club, robbing stores, picking up prostitutes to regain health and then kill them to get my money back, beating up and killing random civilians, and wreaking havoc in the city are just a few of the things I did. Doing whatever I wanted in the streets of Vice City really adds to the awesomeness that this game is. Grand Theft Auto games were not made for me to follow a linear story arc. They’re meant for me to go hog wild in the big city and do all sorts of shit that I wouldn’t do in the real world and that’s fun.

CONS:

Touchscreen Controls
It took some time for me to get used to the touchscreen controls when I first started playing Grand Theft Auto 3 when it was released on the iPad. This game is no different. The touchscreen controls are the same layout as they were in GTA 3. Now I come from console gaming, and when I saw how many touchscreen buttons there were on the screen I was a little overwhelmed. There’s a button for everything. Running, jumping, shooting, and even jacking cars. Driving cars (which can be difficult) takes a little finesse, but once I got it down it was easy. Actually driving a car in Vice City is better than it was in GTA 3. My advice to everyone playing is take the time to get used to the touchscreen controls before diving deep into the game or else you might get really frustrated.

IN CONCLUSION

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is back, and it’s a welcome addition to the App Store. Sure it takes a little time to get used to the iPad controls, but once I was past that the memories came rushing back making my time with Tommy Vercetti fun once again. Wreaking havoc in the city, especially in a tank or attack helicopter, was awesome. Doing it while jamming to the ’80s soundtrack was even better. Nostalgia sure, but with this version I was creating all new memories to have for hers to come. GTA fans this is a must buy! The best part is that now I have this game on both my Xbox 360 console and mobile devices which will make it even harder for me to turn the fun off and go back to reality.

Developer: Rockstar Games
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: $4.99

GAME STATUS: Defeated Zhaka Mu and discovered the secret of the island.
ACHIEVEMENTS EARNED: 16 out of 20 (320 Gamerscore)

For my original review on Zuma’s Revenge click HERE.

After washing up on a mysterious island it was up to my ball heaving frog to find out it’s dirty secret. After more than 60 levels that ranged from too easy to near frustration it became known to me that my frog was no longer alone. Of course that’s what the island natives told me. Ms. Zuma was my reward! A female companion, or maybe it’s PopCap Games revealing the next Zuma adventure along the lines of Ms. Pac-Man and Ms. Splosion Man. A female frog with balls coming out of her mouth solving color based puzzles. Did that sound right? Oh who cares…moving on.

Zuma’s Revenge was a big step up compared to the original game even though I was doing more of the same. Matching colored balls while avoiding the end of the line. Ok, so it sounds like your typical puzzle game, but Zuma’s Revenge is more involving than just solving a particular puzzle. The game had fun and challenging boss fights, using earned tokens to raise the levels of four different spirit animals, and a few unlockable game modes beyond the original adventure that hooked me in and made me want to keep playing just to see what comes up next.

Unlike most other puzzle games that I have played Zuma’s Revenge had an addiction factor that kept me playing. Factors that included achieving that high score, weekly challenges, and finding a way to get that last token or two on each level for the spirit animals. Of course there’s also the achievements for me to earn as well. No other puzzle game has been able to hook me in better than Zuma’s Revenge and that’s saying something. This addiction goes even further than my Xbox 360, because I also have this game on my iPhone and iPad.

WHAT OTHER SECRETS DOES THIS ISLAND HOLD?

Iron Frog, Boss Rush, Weekly Challenges, and the last four achievements to unlock. There’s still so much to do. It’s pretty obvious that my addiction to Zuma’s Revenge means that this game is staying put. The island has drew me in, and it will take more than finding my female frog companion to unlock all it’s secrets. The fog may have been lifted, but it’s time to venture further into the island. Time to play more Zuma’s Revenge.

Developer: PopCap Games
Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
Players: 1
Price: 800 Microsoft Points ($10.00)

I can’t tell you how much I’m enjoying playing both Borderlands and Borderlands 2 on my Xbox 360. I’m so addicted to both games as I kill and loot and repeat for hours either by myself or with my friends. Then I found out that Borderlands was coming to my iPad. “Holy shit! That’s awesome!” Was my response as I went right to the App Store and made my purchase. I couldn’t wait to boot it up. Then I started playing the game and I quickly said “What the fuck is this?” This isn’t the first person shooter/role playing hybrid that I love. Borderlands has gone real time strategy. It took some time for me to get used to this which made me ponder whether this version of Pandora was worth visiting.

PROS:

The Original Cast Is Back
The vault hunters from the original Borderlands are back once again. Roland, Lilith, Mordecai, and Brick are out on the search of tons of loot and riches. Standing in the way are plenty of bandits, creatures, badasses, and so much more. Each of the characters once again feature their special abilities and upgrading skill trees to bring them to their full potential. It was so cool to see Brick hulk up once again and take out enemies with his bare fists, Lilith’s phase walk, and Roland use his turret. Mordecai’s Bloodwing, on the other hand, was a little out of whack especially when trying to take enemies out on higher elevations.

CONS:

This Is Not The Borderlands I Know
Borderlands Legends as an RTS game represents a dramatic change to what fans like myself are accustomed to. Basically it boils down to a love/hate relationship. For me it’s more about the hate, because the Borderlands games that I love are more about shooting, leveling, and looting all in a first person perspective. Instead of controlling one character, I now control all four characters making decisions for all of them on the fly, and sometimes that doesn’t work out to well due to the fact that the touchscreen controls are not that responsive. I also want to mention that the writing seems to have taken a different direction as well. Where’s all the comedy? Borderlands is more about the game that never took itself so seriously. Legends feels like I’ve been teleported to The Twilight Zone. What the heck happened?

Where’s The Loot?
Another big change. One thing I loved was when I killed enemies they would leave behind some valuable loot for me to take or trade with my friends. In Legends all there are no gun or shield drops…only cash from a certain enemy or two. Well that sucks, because that kills a lot of the fun. When I want an upgrade I have to wait until I get to a vending machine and take the little money that I have to buy and sell weapons for all my characters. I have to decide what’s more important. Is it the cool rare weapon, or a much needed shield for extra protection. The only thing that hasn’t changed is the fact that Marcus still lives on the same two word concept, “No Refunds!”

Inconsistent Difficulty Spikes
What really drives me to drink in this game is the fact that the difficulty seems to ramp up really quick. When I mean really quick I mean by Level 2. Then for some strange reason it gets easy again. What the fuck people! Borderlands Legends doesn’t seem to stay consistent with level progression on par with enemy difficulty. It’s a real pain in the ass when I have low level characters with shitty weapons taking on a horde of tougher enemies where I end up dying a lot. Then I proceed to the next level and it’s a piece of cake only for the difficulty to spike again in the next level. Aargh!

IN CONCLUSION

Ok, so it may have Borderlands in the title, and in it’s style, but the familiar game I know and love is not here. Honestly, I’m just a little disappointed here. I don’t know who thought that an RTS would be a good idea. First person shooters do work on iOS devices and if Borderlands Legends was like that, along with the loot, then this game would be a winner. Instead it’s more like a game I just want to delete and forget it ever existed which is what I’m going to do. I think I’ll just stick to Borderlands on my Xbox 360.

Developer: 2K Games
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: $6.99

I, along with many other people on this planet who own a smartphone, am completely addicted to Angry Birds. For those of you out there still in denial don’t be afraid to admit it. Better yet let’s take a moment to reflect on that addiction statement I made, and then I’ll move on…Ok, good. Now that we got that out of the way let’s move on because I want to talk about the new Angry Birds game. Yes, there’s another however this new pig busting game now features one my favorite franchises. Star Wars! Yes, two popularly “milked” franchises have come together into one game and the result is pure addictive awesomeness.

PROS:

Loving The Star Wars Theme
With the Original Trilogy as the backdrop, Angry Birds Star Wars once again brings it’s classic destructive style with a Star Wars twist. Stages are set in places like Tatooine and the Death Star. Dagobah (Path of the Jedi) is available for a small fee while Hoth will be available later as free DLC. Even the birds themselves are styled after popular characters including Luke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Han Solo, Chewbacca, and Princess Leia. R2-D2 and C-3PO show up in bonus stages. The pigs are styled as Stormtroopers, Tie Fighters, and even Darth Vader himself. The story is told through cutscenes and there’s a moment where Han encounters Greedo. Yes, even in the Angry Birds universe, Han shoots first!

The Red Bird Has A Powerup?
In every Angry Birds game the red bird is usually nothing but your average bird with no special abilities making him rather useless compared to the others. Not here in Angry Birds Star Wars. The red bird is Luke Skywalker, and once he meets up with Obi-Wan Kenobi he gets a lightsaber. Now he can slice through walls and take down enemies in style. The red bird is useful for once as he joins a group that includes Obi-Wan’s force ability, Han’s blaster skills, Chewie’s Wookie brawn, and so much more.

Still The Same Addictive Angry Birds Game
Nothing’s changed in the game’s formula except for the characters and abilities. Angry Birds Star Wars is a combination of the original games along with Angry Birds Space released earlier this year. The Mighty Falcon also makes a return as well, but with a Star Wars twist becomes the Millenium Falcon shooting down everything in it’s path. Rovio basically takes the approach of “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, but you can always improve it.” Once I started playing I couldn’t stop as time flew by all around me while I was too busy trying to score three stars on each stage.

CONS:

Day One DLC?
Are you kidding me? Along with all the Star Wars goodness that I have, there’s a section called “Path of the Jedi” which takes place on Dagobah. Here Yoda will teach Luke the ways of the Force along with the ability for the red bird hero, Luke Skywalker, to branish a new lightsaber. Ok, while all this sounds cool the only problem I had with this is the fact that it’s an in-app purchase of $1.99. Sure it’s more levels (tough levels by the way), but to me it’s sort of an insult considering the fact that I just spent $2.99 on the game. C’mon man.

IN CONCLUSION

Who would’ve thought that Angry Birds would venture to “A Galaxy Far, Far Away” and be this much fun. Then again when is an Angry Birds game not fun? Rovio and Lucasarts combine forces to make a gem of a game that’s fun for everyone. Of course there’s that other part about bringing down office productivity and not wanting to spend time with the family because your trying to get three stars on a level thats kicking your ass. Angry Birds Star Wars is great for fans of either milked series along with anyone who likes a fun casual game. Beware, it does get very addictive.

May The Force Be With You.

Developer: Rovio, Lucasarts
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: $2.99 (99 cents on iPhone)

Fairhaven…mobile sized. Not only do I have the latest Need For Speed game on my Xbox 360 I also made the purchase of Most Wanted on my iPad and iPhone. It may be a bit downscaled, but this version of the hit game still packs an amazing punch. On the go and running from the law…what could be better? Doing it in real life maybe. I do have the car for it, but for now I’ll be a good samaritan and just stick with the games. So is this smaller version of the game just as good as the console? Absolutely!

PROS:

Traditional Racing Formula
Like many racing games on the past, this version of Most Wanted sticks to what works best. Racing and unlocking cars with my speed points. Everything is kept right to the point as I can move around the map of the open city of Fairhaven and pick races.The cop chases are fast and frantic and are just as relentless as the console versions.

Looks Amazing
Need For Speed: Most Wanted is clearly the best looking racing game on the iPad and iPhone. I shit you not. The first thing that hit me was how awesome Fairhaven looks. At times it can be a bit hard to notice especially when I’m in the middle of an intense race or cop chase. I also have to comment on the sense of speed when I hit the nitrous and blast past the competition while praying that I don’t hit the wall in the process.

Excellent Controls
Most racing games never seem to get the controls down right. Well I didn’t need to worry about that with Most Wanted. Picking up my iPad and using it as a steering wheel while in a third person view was really cool. Swiping upward activated my nitrous and swiping down braked. The controls are kept simplistic mailing it easy for pick up and play for me. Casual gamers will also enjoy this, and hardcore gamers will use the options to the fullest to fulfill the toughest challenges.

CONS:

Multiplayer?
While Most Wanted features a great single player campaign with tons of cars and options to unlock the multiplayer however is a bit lacking. The only competition I had was beating times on races. Sadly , there is no head-to-head multiplayer action which hurts the game just a bit. To me racing is all about competition. Who has the faster car. Who can take turns better. Winning by an inch or a mile. I want multiplayer! Oh well. At least I have the Xbox 360 version for that.

I Want To Play As The Cops!
I know it’s not Hot Pursuit, but once again I’m jumping on the bandwagon to EA about some sort of update that would allow me to play as the cops. This game would be even greater to put me in the role of the enemy and take out the Most Wanted. I can only dream.

IN CONCLUSION

Need For Speed: Most Wanted is clearly the best racing game that I have played on the iPad. I also like it on the iPhone as well especially when I’m out and about. It’s easy for anybody to pick up and play, yet difficult to master which is great for gamers like myself. Whether I’m playing on my Xbox 360 or my mobile devices, Need For Speed: Most Wanted is a winner and a must buy for anyone who likes racing games.

Developer: Electronic Arts, Firemonkeys
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: $6.99

This is the question I’m asking myself today. I’m sure everyone has seen the latest trailer for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 featuring the new Avenged Sevenfold track “Carry On” by now. Call me interested, but is it enough to sway me back to the franchise I’ve loathed as of late. Hmm…

Now I’ve always been against the franchise since Modern Warfare 2 and the ridiculous amount of cheating in the game’s multiplayer. I did play Black Ops back in 2010 and enjoyed the thrilling campaign along with the ever so popular zombie mode. The other multiplayer is still kind of “meh” to me except for the remote control car bomb which I used a lot. Every time a new map pack arrived, I bought it just for the zombies map. Pathetic I know, but I was that addicted. I also have both World at War and Black Ops Zombies games on my iPhone and iPad. Maybe it’s just me, but Treyarch really has something going here. Why not just have a game with just zombies?

The new zombie themed trailer gave me that Left 4 Dead kind of vibe as survival is still the name of the game. The horde of zombies continue to make their way through would be defenses, but the new portrayal of what is called “Tranzit” features more in terms of both exploration as well as tight defenses while telling a unique “B” movie story. There’s also a 4v4 team based competitive zombie matches as well as the classic gameplay seen since World at War. Once again I mention the topic of why doesn’t Treyarch make a zombie game?

So I sit and think. Yes, I was really unimpressed with the demo I saw at E3. Yes, every GameStop clerk across this country thin that Call of Duty is the greatest game ever (it’s the only game they know and talk about), because of the multiplayer. I personally haven’t liked the multiplayer since World at War because it hasn’t truly evolved. It’s just rehashed shit, but filled with glitchers, cheaters, and wannabe snipers ruining the experience. Plus Battlefield is much better. Treyarch’s new emphasis on the zombies game mode has really got me interested, but Is it enough to make me pay $60 for a copy, or should I wait? The answer will come soon.