With all of Suda 51’s penchant for socio-political psychobabble, surrealism and punk-rock sensibilities, universal Frog Minutes is not the kind of game one would expect from his company, Grasshopper Manufacture. Frog Minutes is Grasshopper’s iOS debut, and when it was announced as a charitable project whose proceeds would aid victims of the recent earthquake and tsunami to hit the developer’s native Japan, all that was known about it was its name and amphibian-based logo. With Grasshopper’s pedigree and following, they probably could have released a game about navigating Japanese tax software and people would still buy it, and in some ways the quiet Frog Minutes is almost as mundane -- it’s an unexpected little app that involves, you guessed it, catching frogs.
If you weren’t rocking a Super Nintendo or Sega Genesis in the early '90s, chances are you got your game on with a TurboGrafx-16. Or maybe you didn’t -- the console never matched the popularity of rival systems, but offered plenty of nifty original titles and sturdy translations of lesser-known arcade games. Those days are here again with the TurboGrafx-16 GameBox, a free app that lets you browse, buy, and play these grunge-era favorites emulated on your iPhone or iPod touch.
War has broken out on the moon -- again! -- and Allied victory is up to you in Military Madness: Neo-Nectaris, an iOS sequel to 1990’s venerable turn-based strategy game, Military Madness. True to its old-school roots, Nectaris delivers hours of simple yet deep solo gameplay and occasionally punishing difficulty. Despite a clunky presentation, die-hard touchscreen generals will find plenty to like.
Digital music lacks one important element from the analog days: romance. Contemplating album art and reading lyrics on jacket sleeves was a wonderfully tactile experience that only enhanced the listening. Aweditorium -- a free, iPad-specific app from global indie music community thesixtyone -- offers that with an online twist.
The latest in a series of academically inclined iOS applications that rely on Wolfram Alpha’s computational engine to do their heavy lifting, Wolfram Astronomy Course Assistant is designed to meet the specific needs of students enrolled in college-level computational astronomy courses. This ain’t Star Walk, and for its intended audience, that’s a good thing.
Gone are the days of ruining your mom’s coffee cups with chalky bubbling color tablets. Martha Stewart is here, and with the Egg Dyeing 101 app, she’s got more ways to fancy up your eggs than you ever dreamed possible. And that’s a good thing. (See what I did there?)
Wim Crouwel, a well-known Dutch graphic designer and typographer, has an interesting quote about Helvetica in Gary Hustwist’s documentary of the same name. “It shouldn’t have a meaning itself,” Crouwel said in praise of Helvetica’s neutral qualities. “The meaning is in the context of the text, not in the typeface.”
While few people are probably unaware of Helvetica’s existence at least peripherally -- it’s used in everything from advertisements to street signs -- Crouwel’s quote is particularly apt for describing Vetica, a vertical shooter based entirely around this most popular of typefaces.
ReaddleDocs gives your phone a robust Documents folder that lets you do everything you need to do with important files, including edit and save, rename, move, copy, archive, mail and store -- and it supports everything from PDF to image files and web pages, as well as all your word processing documents.