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.
The first thing you'll notice when starting up Lawless is the insane level of detail applied to the arcade-style shooter’s characters and environments. It’s seriously one of the best-looking mobile games this side of Infinity Blade III. But much like how an intriguing-looking book might be devoid of anything interesting to say, a game’s contents may not match its memorable sheen — and that's definitely the case here. The intense firefights and crew-based combat of Lawless quickly lose their shine, and it ultimately proves to be just another tepid free-to-play grind.
Even more so than the middling Angry Birds Star Wars II, Angry Birds Go! feels like an elaborate advertisement for other products rather than a purposeful game. The ever-in-vogue kart racer spinoff is tied into a series of marginally useful Telepods toys, and also tries to sell its soundtrack from the menu screens. But this free-to-play affair takes things much further via the introduction of sponsored boosts. Want to keep your kart from breaking down during a race? Use the State Farm Insurance power-up. Much more galling is the Goldfish-branded speed boost, which shoots a stream of virtual cheddar crackers behind your kart for the entire race. No, really.
Cloud storage is a rough business, with new competitors coming out of the woodwork on nearly a weekly basis with the lure of even more free space -- which is why SugarSync has decided to pivot in the opposite direction.
Romancing socially awkward elves might be on the outs in this free-to-play spinoff, but Heroes of Dragon Age for iOS nevertheless manages to capture the spirit of BioWare's beloved dark fantasy series from consoles and PC. However, the familiar music and faces merely amount to a pretty show. Strip away the ambiance, the lore, and the heroes, and this could be any one of the better collectible card games crowding the App Store these days.
PikPok’s latest Flick Kick game offers the most complete and varied experience in the series so far, with the whole gamut of basic on-field soccer situations backed by team building, a curious tale of revenge, and a multi-division league structure. But you’ll have to battle through a barrage of ads or pony up some cash to make the most of Flick Kick Football Legends’ solid gameplay.
Gameloft surely hopes that GT Racing 2’s flashy lighting and obsessively modeled licensed cars will make it stand out from — or at least keep pace with — a recent surge of App Store racing sims, notably genre leader Real Racing 3. Lens flares and dust effects are well and good, but GT Racing 2’s visual fidelity threatens to overshadow its real strength: as free-to-play racers go, it’s got great controls. GT Racing 2 doesn’t reinvent the iOS racing control scheme, but it executes it better than most of its competitors.
What's the fastest way to get the space bucks needed to get your giant galactic battlestation fully operational so you can terrorize the galaxy? Opening up a snack shop and peddling womp rat stew, apparently. Tiny Death Star leans heavily on its adorable pixel art presentation and silly personality to suck you in, as the cutesy Star Wars-skinned take on Tiny Tower reimagines the Death Star as a strip mall of sorts. And keeping it running smoothly is fun — assuming you don't expect any action, explosions, or space battles.
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.