games

After running part one of our interview with Patrick Wylie, the VP of Big Fish Game Studios, your friendly neighborhood gaming journalist got sidetracked a bit with health problems. Don't worry, I seem to have pulled through okay. In case you missed the interview, Big Fish - one of the leaders in casual gaming on PC - has announced both Xbox Live Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 ports of their marquee title Fairway Solitaire. The game is already a huge hit on PC, Mac, and iOS – even people who don’t normally care for Solitaire games (like me) love it.

Check out part two of our exclusive video interview after the break!

More →
1
loading...
2
loading...
26
loading...
0
loading...

As expected, the Xbox Live for Windows Phone game Shoot 1UP landed in the Marketplace this morning. The vertically scrolling shoot-em up game from Mommy's Best Games and Microsoft Studios was first spotted at E3 and made a nice first impression.

Shoot 1UP's claim to fame is that unlike other shoot-em up games where you battle the enemy with one ship, Shoot 1UP allows players to build up groups of ships to take on the enemy at the same time. Instead of earning extra lives, you earn extra ships.

More →
2
loading...
3
loading...
21
loading...
0
loading...

The keynote address for Unite 12 has seen the announcement that Windows Phone 8 will get full support for the Unity engine.  Unity is a very popular engine and it was notably absent from the Windows Phone 8 announcement. The next version of the OS looks to be getting some excellent gaming support with native code and these powerful rendering engines.

The engine is used to power a host of games across and number of platforms and hopefully this means rapid porting of those games to WP8 devices. Unity is one of the top engines on the market so this support is pretty exciting for Windows Phone. 

Here is what David Helgason, CEO of Unity Technologies, had to say on Windows Phone 8.

 “Our mission at Unity has always been to provide solutions for developers to effortlessly bring their work to as many different platforms as possible. The Unity community has been asking for access to Windows Phones and have been eagerly anticipating the release of Windows 8. We’re happy to announce that we will support both.”

More →
8
loading...
16
loading...
73
loading...
0
loading...
1

Windows Phone Game Review - Dream Sleuth

Dream Sleuth isn't your run of the mill Windows Phone game. It's part I SPY, part puzzle game, and party mystery novel. You play the role of Catherine, who must figure out all the clues to a mystery through her dreams.

Dream Sleuth start out a little on the slow side but once you get into the game portion of the adventure, it picks up a little steam.

More →
0
loading...
0
loading...
13
loading...
0
loading...
4

Windows Phone Game Review: Trapped Birds

Trapped Birds is a Windows Phone game that comes across as a play on Angry Birds (with the story line) but the game play doesn't include a sling shot. Trapped Birds is a physics puzzle game where you spin your trapped bird through a puzzle of jumps, loops, and ramps to rescue its egg.

The game reminds me a lot of Daredevil Mouse (which incidentally has been pulled from the Marketplace) and for good reason. The two physics games were developed by QBM5.

More →
1
loading...
0
loading...
19
loading...
0
loading...

It looks like plants and zombies will be battling it out once again for dominion over your front lawn. PopCap Games, makers of the wildly popular first installment of  Plants vs. Zombies, announced today in a press release that a sequel to the tower defense-style game will be slated for a "late spring" release in 2013. Though no specifics were mentioned, PopCap indicated that the sequel will "include a bevy of new features, settings, and situations, designed to delight the franchise's tens of millions of fans around the world."

An unidentified spokesperson connected to game had this to say:

"Spring is crullest curlie ungood time, and plantz grow dull roots. So, we are meating you for brainz at yore house. No worry to skedule schedlue plan... we're freee anytime. We'll find you."

The Seattle-based maker of such hit games as Bejeweled and Peggle was acquired by entertainment powerhouse, EA Games, last year. Plants vs. Zombies was a huge success, spanning multiple platforms including, iOS, Android, Xbox 360, PC and Windows Phone. We expect the same kind of widespread availability for the sequel as well although no platform-specifics were given at this time.

Looking at the close relationship between PopCap, EA, Microsoft and Nokia, we do expect a Windows Phone 8 tie-in.

See the entire press release after the break.

More →
0
loading...
17
loading...
42
loading...
0
loading...

World of Rabbit - The Dig is an interesting, well animated adventure game for your Windows Phone. It's really hard to put your finger on what type of game World of Rabbit is. It's part time management, part adventure and part strategy.

You are tasked at managing a rabbit population that will dig deeper into the ground to create burrows that generate energy and food as well as rooms for rest and entertainment. As you generate energy you can build more levels. As you generate more food more rabbits become available.

You use your entertainment and sleep areas to keep your rabbit population happy. World of Rabbit is a game of balance, management and patience with a bit of addictiveness added in for good measure.

More →
0
loading...
2
loading...
23
loading...
0
loading...

Wednesday, August 8 was an unusual time for Xbox Live on Windows Phone. The Windows Phone Developer site and Marketplace both underwent some upgrades that week. Not everything went according to plan though, and that week’s new Xbox Live game Sally’s Spa didn’t show up until Thursday the 9th. Coincidentally, the Xbox Live Deal of the Week program came to an unceremonious end that week for unknown reasons.

More →
0
loading...
2
loading...
28
loading...
0
loading...

Looks like Windows Phone’s big brother Windows 8 has coughed up some interesting details on allowing games to be paused, resumed across various platforms. The Xbox Live games, Minesweeper, Solitaire and Mahjong all seem to indicate we’ll finally experience the dream of picking up one device and resuming play on with another.

Early on in Windows Phones lifecycle, we saw a demo of the continuous client principle with the arcade shooter The Harvest, but so far, this kind of interaction has all but eluded us. Whilst these games are essentially turn-based, this could be the start of great interactive experiences coming to Windows Phone.

More →
9
loading...
13
loading...
26
loading...
0
loading...
7

Mush: Xbox Windows Phone Review

People play games for many different reasons: to be challenged, to be stimulated artistically or intellectually, for the narrative, and even for the Achievement points. Not every game needs to be a high-pressure experience or a bombastic assault on the senses though; sometimes you just want to relax and play. In fact, I would argue that calming games are especially suited for mobile play since we often play them on the go during our otherwise hectic days. Mush - from student developers Angry Mango - is just the game for such an occasion.

More →
0
loading...
3
loading...
24
loading...
0
loading...

At lunch time on Wednesday, we were a bit hesitant to post a story about the Marketplace updating late. What if it updated within the next few minutes after the post went live? As it turns out, we needn’t have worried. Sally’s Spa, this week’s Xbox live release, finally went live around 1 am EST Thursday. That’s officially the latest a Windows Phone Xbox live game has ever been posted. Cheers?

There is some good news, however. While Game House quoted the game’s price as $4.99 to us, it’s actually showing up at $2.99 right now. Could the lower price be a mistake? I don’t know, but if you’re interested in helping Sally start her own spa chain, I would advise buying now rather than waiting. That price increase on Fling makes me antsy! But you know, $2.99 certainly is fair for Sally’s Spa given that it’s a bit shorter than its predecessor Sally’s Salon and retails for $2.99 on iOS anyway.

More →
1
loading...
1
loading...
24
loading...
0
loading...

Brazilian Windows Phone owners have always complained about the lack of games (including Xbox Live titles) available for the platform, and rightly so. The Brazilian government has strict regulations that require video games (or any 'game') to be certified by its own ratings system, which has proven to heavily delay the release of said games to the Windows Phone Marketplace for owners in the region.

We previously looked at Microsoft adding a batch of 300 titles to increase available content on the Marketplace, but still numbers dwindled compared to other regions. Today, the Brazilian Ministry of Justice filed a statement that plans were in place for games to be certified by distribution companies themselves. 

More →
2
loading...
2
loading...
22
loading...
0
loading...

As folks ‘in the know’ know, updating a platform’s Marketplace/app store is a challenging and laborious thing. Regular occurrences like publishing the latest Xbox Live game and updating the Deal of the Week might seem (to simple laymen) like things that could be easily set up in advance, but that is not the case at all. If you need proof, just notice how the Windows Phone Marketplace hasn’t updated yet. Challenging, I tell you!

All sarcasm aside, these late updates happen from time to time, most recently in June when Fling was scheduled to launch. Today’s delay means Sally’s Spa is not available just yet, much to my dismay (the last game was seriously fun, naysayers). Nor do we have a new Deal of the Week. Interestingly enough, last week’s sale, Need for Speed: Undercover actually ended on Monday, well before the scheduled end time of Wednesday morning. More evidence that running a Marketplace is super hard? You tell me.

More →
1
loading...
0
loading...
20
loading...
0
loading...

Namco Bandai’s Windows Phone output has been somewhat uneven so far. Some of their games like Puzzle Quest 2 are great, many are overpriced (Pac-Man Championship Edition DX anyone?), and a few like More Brain Exercise are simply duds.  Their previous release, Pac-Man Kart Rally, fell somewhere in the middle of the quality spectrum, but I respected the developer’s boundary-breaking use of local Wi-Fi multiplayer. Now Pool Pro Online 3 pushes things even further, becoming the first mobile Xbox Live game with true real-time online multiplayer. While its online mode is unparalleled, a few fouls keep Pool Pro Online 3 from being a truly great pool game.

More →
1
loading...
1
loading...
24
loading...
0
loading...
2

Windows Phone Game Review: LeaderFlip

I really had no clue on what to expect when I first started playing the Windows Phone game LeaderFlip. It's a jumper game where you jump various world leaders as high as you can in an effort to reach the moon.

Now you might say, "Joy, another jumper game" but LeaderFlip was surprising fun to play. You have enough bonuses to help boost your way up the screen (some in a rather creative way) to keep things interesting. And in the end, while I don't see playing LeaderFlip for marathon sessions, it's not a bad time waster for short bits.

More →
1
loading...
4
loading...
20
loading...
0
loading...

Over the weekend Windows Phone Central reported on a killer bug introduced in the latest Farm Frenzy 2 update. Since then, developer Alawar notified us that they are indeed aware of the problem and working on a fix. They also let us in on some good news: they have a new game on the Marketplace.

Farm Frenzy 2: Pizza Party is an expansion to the enjoyable Xbox Live game. But unlike its predecessor, Alawar has chosen to self-publish Pizza Party as a non-Xbox Live title. The decision seems to stem from Pizza Party’s similarity to Farm Frenzy 2; it is an expansion, not a true sequel. The Farm Frenzy series is already several games large on other platforms. By publishing this one as an indie title, Alawar can get Windows Phone caught up more quickly and without publishing too many similar Xbox Live releases.

More →
2
loading...
0
loading...
25
loading...
0
loading...

Last week’s Xbox Live release, Pool Pro Online 3, boasted a highly impressive online multiplayer mode and like, three different pool games. How could this week’s release possibly hope to top that? Why, with girl power of course! Game House has exclusively revealed to Windows Phone Central that Sally’s Spa comes to Xbox Live this Wednesday.

More →
2
loading...
3
loading...
17
loading...
0
loading...
1

Windows Phone Review: Cat Lab!

There is a new Windows Phone game on the Marketplace. Cat Lab! is a multi-level game that has you playing the role of a cat who must capture experimental mice that have gotten loose in the lab.

To progress to the next level you have to collect two of the three mice that are scattered about the screen. Cat Lab! starts out a little slow (not necessarily a bad thing) but the challenge grows as the game progresses.

More →
1
loading...
7
loading...
17
loading...
0
loading...

Pages