When Apple redesigned its apps for iOS 7, the iPad versions got something of a short shrift. Stale staples like Notes and Calendar were happily stripped of their skeuomorphism—but somewhere along the design process, they lost their character too, as Jony Ive sought to bring greater aesthetic harmony across the various iOS screens. Flexibits’ Fantastical 2 for iPad does well to avoid this trap. Instead of a dull port from the smaller screen, it sets a new standard for universality, reinventing its brilliant calendar concept with a streamlined interface that takes everything good about the iPhone app and makes it bigger and better.
Holy smokes, if digital photography and image editing is your thing then hurry your butt over to the App Store this week, because there are some rocking app sales for the shutterbugs among our readers. We've flagged a few of them, but it's freebies and price cuts galore on dozens of apps. Plus, we've got a few notable names with flagship products on the discount rack, so this weekend is a good one to stock up.
We’ve got a wide array of interesting new releases on deck this week, including the officially licensed R.B.I. Baseball 14, long-awaited free-to-play motorbike platformer Trials Frontier, and the new Rollercoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile. And if none of those catch your eye, there are seven other intriguing options in the mix. Be sure to keep an eye out for full reviews of some of these titles in the coming days, and then check back next Thursday for an all-new list of notable games to consider.
You’re never too old to play with LEGO. The colorful, interlocking plastic bricks do wonders for creative thinking and enhancing your imagination, and they’re fun too. We’ve picked out 10 cool, useful, and fun LEGO-themed or related apps and games that appeal to adults as much as—or even more so than—the young’uns that’ll be pulling at your iPhone or iPad the moment they see them. Whether you’re a big LEGO collector, a lapsed or current builder, or just someone with fond memories of a childhood filled with the bricks, these apps are sure to help keep the fire burning inside.
Purchase an iPad for a loved one or family member, and without fail, the recipient will ask, “Does this work with Microsoft Word?” Thankfully, the answer is now a resounding yes—at least for those willing to pay for the privilege. With few exceptions, Microsoft Word for iPad is well worth the wait. While the iPad-only app doesn’t offer the same full-frontal feature assault of the Mac or Windows editions, the majority of the most frequently used, make-or-break tools (including track changes, charts, and rich formatting) are all present and accounted for.
Monument Valley couldn’t be much more different in tone and approach than developer ustwo’s first game, Whale Trail—a delightful, rainbow-filled float through the clouds as a marine mammal—but both excel at charming you with remarkable ease. In this case, it’s done with a quiet, contemplative trek through illusion-soaked puzzle stages, wherein spinning the perspective or tweaking a dial reveals new pathways to traverse. And it’s one of the most beautiful games we’ve ever played.
Death comes in many flavors in FTL: Faster Than Light for iPad. Will your crew slowly suffocate from depleted oxygen? Be eviscerated by carnivorous space spiders? Get caught by the heavily armed armada fleet that's always in hot pursuit—or something far worse, perhaps? An unpleasant fate is almost a certainty in this challenging strategy affair, but the push to survive and conquer the obstacles thrown your way with each light jump is where FTL's magic lies.
Our neighbors to the north have a long and colorful history of strong public funding of the arts, and NFB StopMo Studio from the National Film Board of Canada demonstrates that a government agency can indeed create something of true value for the creative minds of the world. It’s perhaps the single most usable, slick, and capable stop-motion creator we’ve seen on iPad, and it’s a truly unbeatable value for aspiring movie makers.
The latest iOS devices are capable of producing amazingly high-quality video footage, but the resolution tops out at 1080p HD. Thanks to Ultrakam, a new third-party camera app, the iPhone can squeeze out even more pixels—even if the current hardware isn’t quite up to the task. Ultrakam is capable of shooting video with up to 70% more pixels than standard HD. While there’s no denying that it manages to cram in a whole lot more pixels into each frame of video—and the additional detail is certainly noticeable—there are too many tradeoffs made to get there.
Your challenge is simple: fly a wedge-shaped spaceship around an orange slice of space, collecting circular coins. All you need to do is grab 15, and each successful pick-up increments a circular score indicator at the center of the screen. How hard could that be? The twist is that your actions are cloned and represented on screen by an increasingly large robotic swarm of black ships. Collide with one of your echoes and it’s game over.