Touchscreen platforms typically do a solid job of recreating individual aspects of a sport (like swinging a bat or kicking a ball), but they're rarely good at offering full simulations. While it might be a decidedly unrealistic take on football, Football Heroes does provide a fairly complete — and, more importantly, a very fun — version of the sport. Heroes is a straightforward version of 8-on-8 football with a few key differences, the most notable being your ability to punch opponents and use various power-ups.
Updating a beloved app for iOS 7 is no easy task. Simply tweaking the interface to match Apple's lighter, cleaner style can affect the user experience in unexpected ways, but a full-on overhaul can bring its share of problems too, as features are squeezed out in the name of simplicity. Released as a new standalone app, Fantastical 2 has neither of these problems. With an effortless redesign that refines everything we love about the original version, the calendar app retains its spot at the head of the class.
Death is permanent in Rogue Legacy, but it is never final. When a plucky Barbarian Queen is invariably fried by a warlock or chewed up by a warg during her quest to conquer Castle Hamson, one of her children will always be available to take up the mantle. Here's the catch: almost everything in Rogue Legacy is randomized, procedurally generated, or otherwise the result of some cosmic roll of the dice.
In some games, story is the spice; in others, it’s the whole meal. Steve Jackson’s Sorcery! fell into the latter category, as a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure style series of choices unwrapped into seemingly endless possibilities. Sorcery! 2 is largely a continuation rather than a fresh iteration on the concept, since it’s meant to pick up right where the last one left off — though new players can start fresh here if they see fit. And while it’s a little less novel this time around, the game still packs the unique flavor that made the first such a unique treat.
Unlike its comparatively breezy predecessor, Rayman Fiesta Run has teeth. The mechanics haven’t significantly changed, and the game is still as amusing and beautifully presented as before, but a revised level progression and brutally precise platform action make for an absorbing and terrifically challenging experience. Even if you’re not the type to play and replay stages for high scores or collectables, Fiesta Run will pinpoint your perfectionist streak and make you leap and lunge until every last glowing Lum is in hand.
After nearly two years, the mobile edition of iPhoto has finally hit version 2.0, leaving skeuomorphic UI elements behind in order to better fit into an iOS 7 world. Unlike iLife companions iMovie and GarageBand, there’s not a whole lot to get excited about, aside from editing improvements for Camera Roll images. That’s not to say that iPhoto 2.0 isn’t worth the upgrade, particularly now that it’s free with new devices.
Even if it wasn't the only automatic chart-maker in the App Store, we're pretty sure that Viz would be the best. With a unique interface that churns out professional-looking graphs without the need to mess with spreadsheets or percentages, Viz does one thing very well — so well that we've already started looking for excuses to use it.
Thor is one truly badass warrior, but even his trusty hammer, electrifying moves, and a gaggle of armored cohorts to summon into battle can't quite save his latest jaunt from feeling a bit rickety around the edges. On a visual level, Thor: The Dark World is certainly an attractive-looking top-down brawler, which sends you through beautiful 3D environments to smash up evildoers and demonic beasts. Unfortunately, pushy microtransactions and shaky combat break the spell early on.
You’ll have nightmares for days after playing Somethin’ Else’s spookily excellent audio-only survival horror game, Papa Sangre II. This sequel to the innovative 2010 original returns you to the land of the dead in a hunt for trapped memories — this time guided by the voice of Game of Thrones star Sean Bean, who brings a delightful British charm to the proceedings. Papa Sangre II builds well on the successes of its predecessor, but it demands too much from you at times and ultimately sinks into frustrating, tiresome repetition.
Bit.Trip Presents… Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien is arguably one of the best games to hit Mac this year, so the debut of a gorgeous iOS version is more than welcomed. And for the most part, Bit.Trip Run! manages to carry over the intense platforming action while attempting to keep things working on a touch screen. But amid all of that fantastic gameplay, you'll sadly find a game that isn't quite ready for prime time, and desperately needs an update to smooth over some notable issues.