Following the holiday break and a very quiet first week of the new year — which brought us just a handful of releases, like Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed and Lyne — we’re back with our first weekly roundup of 2014. Luckily, there’s a much larger and more interesting slate of new releases out today, including the tank-blasting Battle Supremacy (from the makers of Sky Gamblers), Adult Swim’s Castle Doombad, and Joe Danger Infinity.
Movies take us on wonderful journeys without ever leaving our seats. Together, they comprise a business worth billions of dollars, and we sure do love to watch them — be it in the cinema, on a bus, or in the comfort of our own home. And for anyone who wants to engage with the medium just a little deeper, there’s a multitude of resources available, whether it’s trivia, biographies, recommendations, videos, photos, reviews, analyses, and more. Naturally, iOS gets its share of the action, with dozens of great apps that let you learn more about films, catalog your personal collection, check showtimes, discover the classics you missed, or even watch a thing or two. Here are 10 of the best such options for film aficionados.
The deals this week are all the newest refurbs we could find. Nothing older than a one year old, if that. We're going for so new a refurb there's still that fresh box smell. Elsewhere, we've got the cases and the power you need to keep on going and going and going.
Can there really be one iOS email app to rule them all? Moscow-based Mail.ru thinks so, and is bringing its experience serving more than 100 million users in Russian-speaking countries to a new mobile email client for the rest of the world. myMail consolidates multiple email accounts into a free, universal app, and the service uses proprietary algorithms to detect settings for virtually any IMAP or POP email service, including Gmail, Yahoo!, AOL, and Outlook. All that’s required is the address and password.
It's been quite a year for iOS. Jony Ive's redesign shook things up, but developers once again stole the show, taking the Helvetica Neue Light ball and running with it. From slick, minimal buttons to beautiful fonts and menus, 2013 was the year iOS apps fully matured and finally left its iPhone OS roots behind. So without further ado, here are my favorite designs of the past 12 months.
This minimalist puzzler’s name is styled as LYNE, but we’re having none of it. Uppercase suggests someone’s getting all shouty, but Lyne (as we’re calling the game) is as reserved as they come. Lyne’s all about forming pathways between like-colored shapes positioned on a grid — you’re essentially joining the dots, but are restricted to 90- and 45-degree angles. As you work on each puzzle, abstract noises pleasingly chirp away in the background, confirming every connection like a panpipe-playing robot.
True Axis made all the right changes for the sequel to the 2009 hit driving game Jet Car Stunts, with a big visual upgrade, loads of new levels and play modes, a third difficulty level, and intuitive player creation tools added to an almost identical core experience of racing against the clock and navigating insane courses. Jet Car Stunts 2 pushes the challenge factor a bit far at times, but it’s a fine improvement on its predecessor and a fiendishly awesome game in its own right.
For all of its strengths, Fightback is a game that feels tuned to reward in-app purchases more than strategy or skill. Ninja Theory, the studio behind the '80s-tinged brawler, is known for big console projects like last year’s Devil May Cry reboot and 2010’s Enslaved: Journey to the West. Those games were great — underrated, even — which is why Fightback’s shortcomings come as such a surprise.
Every time a new photo effects app pops up, it’s often frustrating to see the same sepia toning filters, blur effects, and other reliable features that are all getting rather long in the tooth. This fact makes the appearance of Fragment all the more exciting, as it produces effects that nothing else in the App Store even attempts to mimic, yet remains exceedingly easy to use and explore. The app lets you choose from one of 46 built-in base effects, which are essentially distortion masks based on a variety of shape combinations, from simple frames to abstract designs – including crystal shards, geometric patterns, and circular constructs – which distort the image in any number of ways.
Sega’s first attempt to mine the Mario Kart formula worked out rather well on iOS with Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, though it already looks a bit weathered by time (especially without iPhone 5+ widescreen support). Luckily, console sequel Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed has now likewise made the leap to the App Store, expanding the arcade-style approach with the addition of flight and boating segments across an array of colorful tracks inspired by classic Sega properties. It’s once more an entertaining concoction, though slow-paced progression and paid power-ups slightly diminish the effect of this mobile port.