Reviews

Heli Gunner 2 – frontline air combat is a first person shooter Windows Phone game that places you behind a helicopter mounted machine gun. In a nutshell, you fly around a village destroying enemy targets as they appear.

Graphics are nice, game mechanics could be a little better and the variety of targets range from enemy helicopters to ground troops. In just playing Heli Gunner 2 for the past few days the game has potential but just lacks that "something-something" to keep you pulled into the game.

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One of the best features of Windows 8 is that it allows us to run PC games and apps on touchscreen devices like the Surface Pro. Whereas Windows RT tablets are limited to playing Windows RT games, full Windows 8 tablets can play not only tablet-oriented Windows 8 games but also Windows 7 games.

Of course, hardly any PC games actually support touch screen input. Civilization V is touch-optimized, but that's practically it. If you want to play a PC game on your tablet, you generally need either a controller or mouse and keyboard. But a handy new app called Touch Fox adds virtual controls to a handful of PC games that don't otherwise support touch. How does it work? Check out hands-on impressions with video to find out!

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For those with small children, your Windows Phone can be a convenient way to sneak in a few learning lessons while traveling in the car, waiting on a meal at a restaurant or any other occasion you have a few minutes to burn.

ABC for kids all alphabet free is a user friendly educational app that helps your child learn the alphabet by using audio and visual aids. The app isn't going to appeal to everyone but if you are looking for an educational app to help your children pass the time, ABC for kids all alphabet free is worth a try.

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Surface Pro 3 Review

Does the Surface Pro 3 really replace your laptop? Microsoft makes some bold moves with their new Surface design but it remains to be seen if people will buy it.

Microsoft has big goals and a new message for the Surface Pro 3. Instead of attempting to compete with the all-popular iPad from Apple, they're targeting laptop owners and wannabe in-betweeners. Emblazoned everywhere is their new motto: "The tablet that can replace your laptop." So has Microsoft achieved this goal with the redesigned Surface Pro 3?

After spending four weeks with the Surface Pro 3, I think for the most part the answer is a resilient 'yes', but it won't necessarily convince diehard laptop users to switch. Regardless, it's an impressive, category-defining device, even if there's limited adoption by the masses.

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City Dodge is a rather unique Windows Phone game where you race back and forth on the screen, hoping to avoid getting pancaked by a collapsing ceiling. The game increases in speed, difficulty and you play until your character gets crushed by the ceiling.

You have hints, magnet and other boosts to collect to enhance your chances of survival and side missions to help the game from getting stale. City Dodge is a fast-paced game that has a certain amount of appeal to it. I can see it being a good choice when you are looking for something different to pass the time with but I'm not sure City Dodge could hold up to longer gaming sessions.

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Munchem is an interesting Windows Phone app that lets you search for nearby restaurants, check out their menus and order food for pick-up or delivery (if available).

The Windows Phone app comes across as a convenient way to order food on the go. I can see it coming in handy on those nights you don't feel like cooking and want to grab some grub on the way home from work.

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We often like to look to the forums to discover new games and apps to cover. The stuff that you guys have on your minds enough to share it in the forums is probably interesting for us as well. And being a gaming guy, the most interesting forum thread for me is the " Newly discovered games thread." I use it a lot!

One of the games I recently came across within that thread is Super Tap Ultra from InHuman Entertainment. The same developer released an interesting organization app called Node last year, although that app seems to have been abandoned. Super Tap Ultra shows a lot of the same cleverness – it's super simple to play, features great retro pixel art and chiptunes, and is a universal app. Oh, and it's free till the end of the month.

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If you are struggling to get things rolling during Mobile Nations Fitness Month (or any other time of the year) and need a push in the right exercise routine direction, check out the Windows Phone app Gym Master.

Gym Master is a collection of gym exercises that are designed to help you lose weight, increase metabolism and strengthen your body. The app includes step-by-step directions, do's and don'ts and a little background information on the exercise's history.

While it lacks video demos on the exercise, it makes up for things by providing a ton of information on the exercise. Gym Master has an exercise database well suited for all levels of fitness buffs and is an appealing addition to the Windows Phone fitness library.

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If you are struggling with a good weight loss diet there's a Windows Phone app out there that could be of help. Fat to Fit Diet Plan Pro is a twelve week diet plan designed to help you lose weight. Coupled with an exercise routine, the app claims to be able to shed up to sixty pounds.

Fat to Fit Diet Plan Pro has a simple interface, weight tracking, a BMI calculator and a wide range of recipes to get you through twelve weeks of dieting. You can even create a shopping list to stock your kitchen pantry will everything you need for the week.

The app comes across as a well rounded Windows Phone fitness app that could help you reach your Fitness Month goals.

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Fitness Log, a simple gym log for your Windows Phone

One of the many tools to staying fit is keeping track of your exercise sessions and there are plenty of Windows Phone apps available to help you log all your trips to the gym, running track or other workout venues. Whether you are taking advantage of the Mobile Nations Fitness Month as motivation to get you up off the couch or just looking for a way to log your workouts, Fitness Log may be one of the simpler options to consider.

The app offers a calendar and analysis page to get a better overview of your workout history, categorizes your workouts by muscle group and offers OneDrive backup support. What Fitness Log will not do is provide the exercises you will be tackling. You'll need to enter the exercise manually which may not be too appealing to someone just starting out but does help the app fit your individual needs a little better.

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8.1 HD Tiles is a Windows Phone 8.1 app that will let you add transparent Live Tiles to your Start Screen. The app not only offers transparent tiles for two hundred apps but 8.1 HD Tiles also offers tile options for settings, websites and blank tiles that can be used as spacers or to categorize groups of Windows Phone Live Tiles.

The app is compatible with Windows Phone 8 devices but some of the system settings will not be available and the tiles are not transparent. 8.1 HD Tiles is an easy way to add transparent Live Tiles and a nice addition to the Windows Phone 8.1 app library.

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Wings review, a Windows Phone WWII air combat game

Wings is an air combat game that is set during World War II that has you bouncing around the South Pacific battling enemy ships, island embedded camps and dodging enemy aircraft.

The concept sounds appealing but unfortunately, Wings falls a little short on the execution. The Windows Phone game has potential but really needs a little fine-tuning before it can hit on all cylinders.

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Guess That is a collection of three trivia games that calls upon you to identify flags from various countries, corporate logos and celebrities. The Windows Phone 8 game has 21 level packets that total 420 trivia levels of play.

The game has a nice, clean layout with plenty of challenging trivia levels. A slight spacing issue is present with the game screen but nothing ruins the gaming experience. After playing Guess That for a few days, it comes across as a nice collection of trivia images that will test your knowledge and is a fun way to pass the time.

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Ballance Resurrection is a fun, challenging, wonderfully drawn-up puzzle game for Windows Phone 8. The game is a Marble Madness styled game where you have to navigate a ball through a series of platforms, rails, and other obstacles.

The gaming platform is set high in the clouds and one wrong move will send your ball plummeting to its demise. Ballance Resurrection is a multi-level puzzle game with a bit of an arcade feel about it. The game requires a gentle touch, steady hand and a good bit of patience. In playing Ballance Resurrection for a short time, it comes across as an entertaining option for your Windows Phone.

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Last month we named a little twin-stick shooter called JoyJoy as one of May's best new Windows Phone games. Now it's time to follow up with a full review!

JoyJoy comes from Radiangames, maker of the similarly fantastic Bombcats Special Edition. Radian originally published this one as an Xbox Live Indie Game on the Xbox 360 way back in 2010. Now a whole new audience can experience JoyJoy's simple shoot 'em up bliss along with an array of improvements and tweaks for mobile play. Fans of the genre won't want to miss it.

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Unroll Me - unblock the slots is a puzzle game for Windows Phone 8 that has you solving a puzzle, which in turn creates a path for a white ball to travel safely to the finish point in the gaming levels. The game can be rather challenging in that you need to stay one step ahead of the rolling ball as you solve the puzzle or you'll see the white ball crash and burn, ending your hopes of completing the puzzle level.

The game has had a decent amount of success of on iOS and Android platforms and in playing Unroll me for the past few days, it should do well on the Windows Phone platform.

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For many, pizza is a staple food item and the Windows Phone app Pizza Pointer is designed to help you seek out the nearest Pizza Parlor (and yes, technically Little Caesars is a pizza parlor).

Pizza Pointer has the ability to map out all the pizza places in your area, generate driving direction and, if available, provide you with phone numbers, websites and other details on the pizza joint. In using Pizza Pointer over the past few days, it comes across as a handy Windows Phone app to help satisfy your pizza cravings.

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Stress Scale Calculator is a Windows Phone app designed to measure your potential for illness based on several stress factors in your life. Stress affects our health, moods, and general fitness.

The app is extremely simple and is based on the Holmes and Rahe stress scale (more on this in a second) that presents you with a series of stress factors. The more stress, the more risk of illness.

While the Stress Scale Calculator may not be your typical Windows Phone app to be highlighted during Fitness Month, identifying areas of stress may help your overall health and welfare.

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Life360 is a family location app for Windows Phone 8 that will map out family members smartphones using GPS tracking technology. The app also has features to locate lost phones, alerts for when family members reach their destination, and more.

Life360 is available for Windows Phone 8, iPhones, Android devices and even non-smartphones can be registered and tracked. The app has plenty of features but does require each smartphone to have the app installed and each family register for membership. While the core Life360 service is free, it takes a little more effort to set-up than, say AT&T's Family Map but may end up saving you a little cash along the way.

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Dog Parks is a Windows Phone app designed to help pet owners find pet friendly parks in their area where they can run their pets. It can be a challenge for some pet owners to find open spaces where their dogs can exercise and enjoy the outdoors.

Dog Parks is an easy way to see what parks are in your area and while traveling. The app is a tad restricted in the size of its dog park database and only covers areas within the United States, Canada and Australia. The developer is working to expand the coverage and while limited, Dog Parks can be a useful Windows Phone app to have.

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Dumbbell Workouts is a handy Windows Phone app for those who are looking for an easy way to tone muscle groups using the free weight dumbbells. The app is a small collection of exercises that can be useful for those who choose to workout from a home gym or for those who have active memberships at a formal gym setting. In addition to the dumbbell exercises, Dumbbell Workouts also contains a few dumbbell-free exercises designed to firm up your abs and butt.

Dumbbell Workout has a straightforward layout and can help you make the most of Fitness Month. It's a nice Windows Phone app, probably more appealing to someone just starting out on the fitness path looking for an exercise regiment.

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Last week, Disney released yet another game for Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 devices - Words of Wonder. The game is word search game that has a match three game ( Maleficent Free Fall, Frozen Free Fall, etc.) feel about it.

The game has you following the Disney character Watson the Owl as he fights the grey curse that is erasing the color from his storybook. You use the power of words to unlock bonus items and restore the color to the book.

Words of Wonder is a simple, yet challenging for players of all ages and a nice addition to the Disney Windows 8/Windows Phone gaming collection.

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Two Dots is a casual, Windows Phone puzzle game that appears to be the third installment of connect-the-dot styled games from Data Arc. Two Dots follows Pop The Dots and Dots, sharing the same minimalistic design and mildly addictive game play.

Two Dots has over three hundred levels of play, which gives the game a little staying power and while game play is easy to pick up, it's no pushover. Two Dots does a nice job of picking up where Pop The Dots left off and is an entertaining puzzle game for Windows Phone 8.

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Commando Jack is a tower defense game for Windows Phone 8 that has you battling wave after wave of alien invaders. While game play isn't much different than other tower defense game, Commando Jack steps out slightly by letting you jump inside a defensive turret for a first person perspective on things.

The game has plenty of weapons upgrades, a wide range of enemies to defeat and several global venues to defend. Graphics are nicely drawn up and with plenty of gaming variations and difficulties, Commando Jack will keep you on your toes. Commando Jack has been well received over on iOS and should see similar success here on the Windows Phone platform.

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Slingcat is a Windows Phone game where you play the role of a cat, which bears the same name, who is on a mission to find buried treasure. Armed with only a bow, Slingcat faces an assortment of dangers during his quest for treasure that include charging bulls, canaries armed with boulders, bomb dropping vultures and more.

Gameplay is a combination of a platfomer styled game and an action shooter. This combination of game play styles helps add to the games appeal and will definitely keep you on your toes. Animations are nicely drawn-up, game play challenging and Slingcat makes for an enjoyable gaming option for Windows Phone 8.

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