Games

Broken Age for iPad [App Store Link]

Broken Age for iPad

For anyone unfamiliar, Broken Age is the delightful point-and-click adventure game I wrote about on Tools & Toys not long ago. I'm super excited to see it make the transition to iPad, much like I was when Machinarium did the same. These kinds of games just feel more natural to play on a touch screen rather than with a mouse or keyboard.

Even if you've already played Broken Age before, you should consider the iPad version. This isn't some cheap port—the wonderful soundtrack and quality voice acting are all still there, as well as the gorgeous, hand-painted design aesthetic. If you haven't had the chance to play it yet, you're in for a treat.

Note: this is still just Act 1 of the game, with Act 2 releasing later this year as an in-app purchase.

Get Broken Age for $10 on the iOS App Store.

Monument Valley

Monument Valley

My latest iOS gaming obsession is Monument Valley, a new platformer inspired by the art of M.C. Escher. You play as Ida, a silent princess who must navigate a series of seemingly impossible architecture by solving puzzles and avoiding the Crow People and other strange inhabitants.

Each level presents a structure that looks impossible to traverse at first, but by moving or rotating sections of the environment, you can alter these optical illusions to create a path where none existed before. Watch the official trailer and you'll see what I mean.

Monument Valley - 2

As noted in a behind-the-scenes video, every stage is like a different work of art, beautiful enough to be printed out and hung on a wall. As you interact with Ida's world, you are greeted with pleasant sound effects and music, so I recommend playing with headphones for the best experience. (I wonder if the developers plan to release the soundtrack, because I would buy it.)

Monument Valley is one of the most gorgeous and thoughtfully considered games I've seen on iOS, one that answers the question, "Are video games art?" with a resounding yes! And it's only $4, so there's not much reason to stay away.

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Loren Brichter's New Game, 'Letterpress'

Transient

Loren Brichter, creator of Tweetie (now known as the official Twitter client for iOS), is back to developing apps independently. Today, he has released a new game called Letterpress for the iPhone and iPad.

Transient
Transient

(note: both of these screenshots display the 'Retro' theme and not the default 'Light' theme)

It looks a bit like SpellTower, but the mechanics are totally different. The object of the game is to take turns with another player, creating words on a 5x5 board of letter tiles. As each player creates words, letters on the board are highlighted in their respective colors, until either the entire board is colored or both players have passed their turn in a round. The biggest difference between this and SpellTower is that you can create words using letters that are not connected together in any way.

The rules as explained in the app:

  • Words must have at least two letters.
  • Words may only be played once.
  • Words may not be a prefix of a previously played word. For example, if Player 1 plays the word "QUILTS", Player 2 cannot play "QUILT" (but "QUILTED" and "QUIT" would both be fine).

The sounds and animations in the app are charming, the asynchronous nature of the online multiplayer makes it easy to pick-up-and-play whenever you feel like it, and even the typography is pleasant.

The game itself is free, but you can also unlock the full version for $0.99 within the app, which allows you to have multiple games going and also unlocks the other themes. I definitely recommend this game.

Letterpress (App Store Link)

Update: MacStories did an interview with Loren, wherein he described how he created the sound effects used in the game. Not what I expected.