Games

Guitar Hero 5 sales not exciting enough for you? Here’s an Xbox Live Deal of the Week we can really sink our teeth into: The Harvest is going on sale for $4.99, down from $6.99.

The Harvest is an action-RPG set in a distant future in which aliens have conquered humanity. Thanks to the development of armored mech suits, the remaining pockets of humans finally have a chance to fight back. Our review praises the game’s beautiful 3D graphics, easy controls, multiple playable characters, and diversity of upgrade options.

The Harvest is that rare thing – a really impressive Windows Phone-exclusive game. But many gamers passed over it or don’t know about it due to the dreaded $6.99 price point. The sale price should help Luma Arcade’s action-RPG finally get its due.

The Harvest’s $4.99 sale begins Wednesday and will last one for week. Buy it or try the demo here (Zune link) at the Marketplace.

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

Anyone who has small kids knows that they are fascinated by both phones and videogames. Handing off a phone to your child while in the car or at a restaurant can be a great way to keep the little one occupied. Indie developer Ganlok Studios has produced three fine kids’ games for Windows Phones: Mazoocard, Toy Xylophone, and Simon Cow. Each title offers clean, attractive graphics, simple gameplay, and a great user interface.

Head past the break for our full three-game review.

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0

Plan Bee updated, adds online ranking system

It's been a while since we first looked at the Windows Phone 7 game Plan Bee. It's a cute, mildly addictive game that has you flying around a meadow pollinating flowers and dodging spiders.  Plan Bee is one of those "something different" games that grows on you.

The free game for your Windows Phone was recently updated improving the online leaderboards to the game and adding an in-game ranking system to show your current position on the global leaderboard. The update also includes a few graphics improvements.

You can download your free copy of Plan Bee here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

0
loading...
0
loading...
10
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

22

Lunar Lander is this week's Xbox Live game

Last week’s Xbox Live game, Enigmo, broke three straight weeks of Game Room releases. To be fair though, Harbor Master also came out alongside Centipede. Anyway, I hope you like retro games, Windows Phone gamers, because this week’s Xbox Live title is another Game Room entry: Lunar Lander.

Atari’s original Lunar Lander arcade game came out in 1979. Yes, this week’s release debuted the same year I was born. It’s 32 years young! Lunar Lander was the first Atari title to use vector graphics (just as Asteroids Deluxe did a few years later). Its graphics are composed entirely of white lines on a black background. The object is to safely land a spacecraft on the surface of the moon. The original arcade game used an actual lever to control the craft’s thrust and buttons for steering. It will be interesting to see how the game’s controls have been adapted for mobile touch screens.

See that? I didn’t say anything negative about Lunar Lander or how inexplicable it is that someone chose to release it on Windows Phone over so many other Game Room titles. That’s me, Captain Optimism!

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
4

Earthworm Jim HD - Review

During the 16-bit gaming era, Shiny Entertainment’s Earthworm Jim made quite a splash. It boasted very unusual character designs, an off-beat sense of humor, and excellent graphics and sound. It was also frustratingly hard, but so were a lot of games back then. Earthworm Jim was such a success that it spawned a few sequels and its own cartoon series.

Fast-forwarding several years, Gameloft - the developer/publisher known for producing mobile clones of popular console franchises – has brought the original Earthworm Jim to Windows Phone as an Xbox Live title. Is Earthworm Jim still as groovy as he ever was? Yes and no. This version is pretty rough around the edges thanks to some poor design decisions from the ‘loft.

Swing past the jump for our in-depth review.

3
loading...
1
loading...
8
loading...
0
loading...
4

Infinite Flight - Review

If you are a flight simulator fan, Infinite Flight is being offered over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace that might suit your fancy. You can pilot a Cessna 172SP or a Cirrus SR22 (future updates will bring more aircraft to the app) around the San Francisco Bay area.

From realistic flight controls to multiple airport destinations, there is a lot to Infinite Flight. And to read more on this Windows Phone flight simulator, glide on past the break.

0
loading...
1
loading...
18
loading...
0
loading...
1

Ener-Jewels - App Spotlight

There are a few "bejeweled-like" games available over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. One such is ImproviSoft's Ener-Jewels.

As with most "bejeweled-like" games, the object is to create a vertical or horizontal combination of three or more of the same jewels. Ener-Jewels has four game modes,

  • Infinity: A never ending game mode.
  • Power-up: As you create the combinations, you obtain power to move to the next stage. The power-up meter is at the bottom of the screen and when it fills, you move to the next level.
  • Time Race: You race against the clock to score as much as you can. The more combos you create, the slower the countdown timer runs.
  • Burst: You have sixty seconds to complete each level. Fail to do so and the game's over.

As you power up, the levels become more challenging. Should you get stuck, there's a hint button just below the power bar to help you out.

Ener-Jewels shares the same addictive quality that the original Bejeweled possesses. Graphics are crisp, sound effects nice, and with the multiple gaming modes there's plenty of game time available.

Ener-Jewels comes in two versions. You have Ener-Jewels TGIF, a free, ad-supported version and if you don't like the ads, there's a paid version without ads that runs $1.99.

0
loading...
0
loading...
6
loading...
0
loading...

Rocket Riot, the Xbox Live twin-stick shooter from Dutch developer Code Glue, received a minor update this week.

Rocket Riot version 1.2 change log:

  • Control bug completely eliminated

Rocket Riot’s virtual twin-stick controls are extremely smooth and fun to use.  But as I mentioned in our review, the game’s controls used to bug out occasionally in certain levels. That won’t happen anymore, thank goodness.

We’ve also learned that Rocket Riot will receive a more significant update in the future. Among other things, it will improve the game's handling of Achievements. I’m glad Code Glue continues to improve their already standout title.  Rocket Riot costs $4.99, and it has a free trial. To join the riot, grab it here (Zune link) on the Marketplace.

Fun fact! The Rocket Riot version 1.1 update article was my first post here at WPCentral. Time flies (with rockets).

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
4

Race and Battle - RC Cars with attitude

A Trillion Games has launched a rather fun looking race game over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. Race and Battle has RC cars armed with rockets that battle on a miniature race track.

The 3D graphics look impressive and you can battle against the phone or a friend (two players on one Windows Phone). You control your race car by a tiny RC Controller that sits in the bottom corner of the screen. Tapping and holding the controller gets your car moving and by wiggling your finger on the controller, you control steering. Rockets are fired at your opponent by double tapping the screen. The controls take about a lap or two around the track to get used to.  I can imagine the two player mode gets rather cramped.

0
loading...
0
loading...
17
loading...
0
loading...

Last week, super tough Earthworm Jim was the Xbox Live Deal of the Week. This week’s sale game is much easier. It’s Guitar Hero 5 from Glu Mobile and Activison.

On consoles, Guitar Hero has long been outdone by the excellent Rock Band series. Activision, Guitar Hero’s publisher, even made it a point to run the ‘Hero series into the ground by releasing numerous sequels and spin-offs every year. Bad mistakes, Activision’s made a few. But hey, Guitar Hero 5 is the only Xbox Live music game on Windows Phone. It’s committed no crimes. Plus it’s actually decent, with 32 songs from artists like Blink 182, David Bowie, and Garbage, and easy Achievements.

Guitar Hero 5 is on sale for $4.99 (the price it always should have been), down from $6.99. There is of course a free trial. Get your rock on here (Zune link) in the Marketplace.

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
2

Square Off - Review

Given that both Xbox Live Indie Games on Xbox 360 and games on Windows Phone use the XNA development environment, it’s surprising how few indie games have made the jump from Xbox 360 to Windows Phone so far. Twin Blades is the earliest game to have made the transition (becoming an Xbox Live title, no less). Indie gaming fans sick of puzzle games now have a more hardcore game to play: Square Off, courtesy of Australian developer Gnomic Studios.

Square Off’s story, told through a series of full screen stills in the intro and ending, involves a prolonged alien invasion of the earth. Humanity is unable to defeat the aliens for some reason, so a mad scientist comes up with a plan. He splices alien DNA with his own brain cells, creating a team of Square Avengers. These little guys strap on jet-packs, grab some guns, and head out to save the planet.

While the silly story sets the stage, Square Off is really just about shooting a bunch of aliens. The game consists of seven levels: the first three have four regular waves followed by a boss wave, while the final level contains two waves and a big boss wave. In normal waves, a group of UFOs act as enemy generators. They spawn numerous smaller enemies and must be dealt with before the bad guys overwhelm you with numbers. Helpful color coded arrows indicate the location of off-screen enemies and UFOs. Finish everybody off and it’s on to the next wave.

Rocket past the break for our full review.

0
loading...
0
loading...
14
loading...
0
loading...
0

Pitfall! - Review

Many younger gamers’ first exposure to Pitfall! came from the console title Marvel Ultimate Alliance, which featured a Pitfall! minigame. But Pitfall! started its life way back in 1982 on the Atari 2600. The product of a single Activision developer, David Crane, it sold over 4 million copies and skyrocketed Activision to stardom. Now developer Krome and publisher Microsoft Game Studios bring the ‘Fall! To Windows Phone as both an Xbox Live and Game Room title. Is it better suited to mobile play than cranky ol’ Asteroids Deluxe? Yes!

Pitfall! stars the adventurer Pitfall Harry. His sprite was comprised of four separate colors on a platform in which most sprites were made of only one or two colors. Harry’s surplus of colors produced such a realistic effect at the time that many people thought an actual human being had somehow become trapped in their game cartridge. Thanks to modern computer technology we now know that this was not the case, but Harry still retains a certain visual charm after all these years.

Grab onto a vine and swing past the jump for our full review!

0
loading...
0
loading...
10
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

0

Shut The Box - App Spotlight

Looking for an interesting game for your Windows Phone? Shut The Box is being offered over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace that is an Old English puzzle game.  It's a simple, yet challenging game.

You have your box, a pair of dice, and tiles (or shutters) numbered one through nine. The object of the game is to turn down all the tiles. You do so by rolling the dice and turning down the corresponding tiles that equal the sum of each roll. When you roll the dice with a sum that won't drop any tiles, game over.

It's a simple game that has a Yahtzee feel to it. Shut the Box has fantastic graphics and is an enjoyable way to pass the time with. Shut The Box also includes a statistics page so you can evaluate your performance and a settings page that includes a Move Hints settings. This is a good feature to help you learn the game strategy.

There is no trial version for Shut The Box and the full version will run you $.99. You can purchase the game here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

0
loading...
2
loading...
16
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

1

Monkey Madness - App Spotlight

Phoebit Software is offering Monkey Madness over at the Windows Phone 7 Marketplace. The platformer game has you controlling your monkey with the phone's accelerometer. You work your way through a moving maze/ladder to reach the top of the screen. Jumping is controlled by tapping the screen to leap through openings in the walkways or rungs in the ladder.

Along your journey you try to collect bonus items and avoid dangers such as snakes and ghosts. If one of the monsters catch you, you will loose one of your three lives. You also need to be careful not to bump your head on the walkway above or fall through the gaps in the moving rungs. You won't loose a life but your monkey will be stunned for a short period.

Monkey Madness has an online leader board to compare your scores with others. As you advance in levels, the game becomes more challenging and you really need to stay on your toes as the direction of the rungs will change.

0
loading...
0
loading...
10
loading...
0
loading...
0

Asteroids Deluxe - Review

Centipede, the first Game Room title for Windows Phone, impressed many with its faithful arcade emulation and stellar presentation. Asteroids Deluxe is the second portable Game Room entry. It’s still a very faithful port (perhaps even more so than the console/PC version), but the game itself is more of an acquired taste.

Asteroids Deluxe is the 1981 arcade sequel to the original Asteroids. Players pilot a ship through an asteroid field, blasting space debris for points. Once a large asteroid is fired upon, it breaks into two smaller ones. Each of those splits into two really tiny, hard-to-hit rocks. Clear a wave of all asteroids and a new wave starts up with even more rocks to avoid and destroy.

Fly past the break and into hyperspace for our full review.

0
loading...
1
loading...
13
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

Two Microsoft Game Studios titles recently received software updates – Full House Poker (review) and Hexic Rush (review). We’ve worked tirelessly from the moment they were updated to find out just what was changed, and it has finally paid off. Don’t say we never did anything for you!

The following issues were fixed in the Full House Poker version 1.1 update:

If listening to Zune music while playing the game, and you turned the game music volume all the way down (in the game settings), after exiting the game, you could no longer turn up the volume on your Zune music without rebooting the phone.  The game music slider no longer controls the Zune music volume as that’s what the phone volume buttons control.

If you tombstoned during a tournament at the right time, when you went to continue your game the blinds would reset to 5/10.  This was very frustrating in a high buy in game or late in a tournament where they should be much higher.

It’s great to have both of these issues fixed. However, Our own George Ponder has recently experienced a separate problem with his temporary save game (not the permanent one) disappearing, so we hope to see that tackled in the future.

0
loading...
0
loading...
18
loading...
0
loading...
2

Steel Avenger - Review

Billed as one of the most cheesiest story lines for a Windows Phone 7 game, Steel Avenger turns out to be a rather decent game for your Windows Phone. Reminiscent of the classic arcade game Spy Hunter, Steel Avenger puts you in the role of Harry Kersey, an ex-cop who is trying to avenge hiis wife's brutal death.

Kersey takes out his revenge on the streets of downtown Farlix against the criminals responsible for his loved ones untimely death. With the assistance of sympathetic police force, who conveniently drop power-ups from helicopters, Kersey will weave through traffic taking his vengeance out on the bad guys.

Ease on past the break to read more on Steel Avenger and how you can help Kersey extract his justice.

0
loading...
17
loading...
9
loading...
0
loading...
0

Extreme Lines - Review

Ran across an interesting, somewhat addictive Windows Phone 7 game the other day. Extreme Lines by Blue Trading is a $.99 game over at the Marketplace that is line game with a puzzle twist to it.

Extreme Lines offer two game plays, Classic and Extreme and two Game Modes, Lines and Squares. With two gaming levels (easy and hard) Extreme Lines comes with plenty of game to it.

Ease on past the break to read more on Extreme Lines.

0
loading...
0
loading...
13
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

1

Juice Factory - Review

We made mention of the Windows Phone 7 game Juice Factory a while back. It's a slice and dice game reminiscent of Fruit Ninja. Your task with the game is to throw your meat cleaver (yes, your slicing fruit with a cleaver) at various arrangements of fruit.

Along the way you'll have barriers, wooden logs and moving walls to contend with. There are over 80 levels to Juice Factory, giving you plenty of playing time. To game modes and an online leaderboard help give the game a competitive edge.

0
loading...
2
loading...
17
loading...
0
loading...
0

Escaping Lava - App Spotlight

Escaping Lava is a jumper game of sorts for your Windows Phone. You play the role of an archeologist who is exploring a volcano. While your searching, the volcano begins to erupt and, you guessed it, you have to escape the lava flow.

You have a wall with various protruding rocks and instead of jumping your way to the top of the screen, you use a grappling hook and rope. You shoot your grappling hook by tapping on the rock you want to swing to.  You then use your momentum to swing to the next rock, working your way up the screen. The higher you climb, the greater the score.

It sounds easy but some rocks explode, some give away to your weight and you can out stretch your rope. Then there's the lava. If your momentum pulls you too low, you run the risk of being overtaken by the lava.

There is a free trial available for Escaping Lava with the full version running $.99. If you like jumper games but are looking for a new twist to the concept, Escaping Lava might be worth a try. You can find the game here (opens Zune) at the Marketplace.

0
loading...
0
loading...
16
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

0

Gridd -- new side shooter for Windows Phone [Video]

We like our "arcade" style games around these parts, call us old or whatever, but there's something fun about these types of games. Gridd is fairly basic: you have a ship, you tilt the phone, it auto-shoots and you dodge or destroy on coming enemies.

For us, it's like TapSlosion + OMG mixed.

The game fetches for $1.99, which is a bit higher than the $0.99 range we usually see such games fall in. It lacks global leader boards and the tilt sensitivity needs to be increased (it's a bit sluggish). Having said that, the graphics and sound are pretty top notch and we like the design--heck with an update or two, it can be a real break out game. So although we like it, we'll have to recommend you give the trial a go (user feedback suggests it doesn't run on the Surround, for be forewarned)

Grab it here in the Marketplace.

0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

6

Zombie Attack! 2 - Review

Windows Phone 7 has no shortage of tower defense games. In addition to numerous indie offerings, Xbox Live games Star Wars: Battle for Hoth, Plants vs. Zombies, and geoDefense will all be available by the end of June. Then there’s Zombie Attack! 2 (AKA Zombie Attack! The 2nd Wave) from IUGO Mobile Entertainment. “Sweet, zombies and tower defense go together like brains and ketchup,” you might be thinking. Don’t get too excited just yet…

Zombie Attack 2’s claim to fame is that the player controls a human survivor that runs around planting and upgrading towers. Standing next to a tower boosts its damage by fifty percent. The survivor can attack zombies directly with a machete or shotgun, but zombies can hurt him or her as well. If the human dies, he or she will re-spawn at the base after several seconds. The base has its own health meter. If the zombies destroy the base, the game ends.

The six playable characters include: Survivor, Red Ninja, Fighter, Super Spy, Santa, and Daisy Mae. They don’t play differently and are fairly generic, except maybe for Daisy Mae. She’s actually the star of a separate indie WP7 title from IUGO.

Creep past the break for our full review.

0
loading...
1
loading...
15
loading...
0
loading...
0

Pinball League: The Juggler - Review

Tainicom has brought the pinball experience to your Windows Phone with Pinball League: The Juggler. How does the song go? He's a pinball wizard there's got to be a twist....

While you may not become a pinball wizard with Pinball League, we found it to be an entertaining game to pass the time with. The 3D graphics looks really good and the realistic game play represents pinball machines really good.

Ease on past the break to read more about Pinball League: The Juggler.

0
loading...
9
loading...
12
loading...
0
loading...

Register or Login to add comments

Pages