I’ve always loved the Lego suite of licensed games more than most people do. They’ve always been the perfect storm for me: a unique combination of geekiness, humor, and obsessive collection and completion. Every time I pick one up, I don’t stop playing it until I’ve unlocked every character, found every collectible, and beat every secret level.
Lego The Lord of the Rings by TT Games Category: iOS Games Works With: iPhone, iPad Price: $4.99
Needless to say, I am a fan.
The iOS version of developer Traveler’s Tales sweded version of the Lord of the Rings film trilogy is out now; the epic 1.3-gig game contains Lego recaps of all three Lord of the Rings films, over 90 characters, and all the soon-to-be-dead orcs, goblins, and Uruk-Hai you can tap. And while the game is every bit as cute and collectastic as the other ones I’ve played, its easily confused controls bog it down a little.
That’s not to say that it’s unplayable, but you’ll have to muster all of your fandom and patience to really enjoy it.
It’s been a little while since I reviewed a fantasy game with a branching plot, so I picked up Sorcery! 2, a new title from developer Inkle Studios and designer Steve Jackson, co-founder of Lionhead Studios (maker of the Fable series of role-playing games for Xbox and Xbox 360 consoles) and writer of the gamebooks on which this franchise is based. Not the Steve Jackson who created the GURPS tabletop RPG platform, but that’s an amazing coincidence.
Sorcery! 2 by Inkle Studios Category: iOS Games Works With: iPhone, iPad Price: $4.99
Sorcery! 2 is the second (duh) in what will be a four-part adventure series, and it’s equal parts visual novel, RPG, and gamebook. And it all takes place in a beautiful, hand-drawn world with multiple paths and interesting old men to talk to. I mean, I don’t think you only talk to old men, but I spent about an hour with the game, and I did talk to some old men of varying crotchetiness. And a restauranteur who may or may not have been a star-spawn of Cthulhu.
Roman Ruins HD — Reference — $4.99 (special launch price; reg. $9.99)
If you’re a fan of ancient Rome — and who isn’t? — but can’t justify the expense to actually go and look at its old buildings, you might want to have a look at Roman Ruins HD. It’s a new iPad app that collects a wealth of high-definition pictures, virtual tours, and/or 3D overhead shots of over 350 sites. You can read all about the places, and some locations also use the app’s cool Google Street View integration to let you pretend you’re walking through them. But you’ll have to provide your own bored, screaming children, tired feet, and sunburn for the full experience.
Hidden object games don’t usually catch my fancy, to be honest. I’ve never been a big fan of the mechanics, which typically require you to find objects to then reveal other objects, which can then be combined to become actual useful objects. I’ve also never been too taken by the typical romanticized story lines, either.
Pahelika: Secret Legends by Ironcode Gaming Category: Mac Games Works With: Mac OS X Price: $4.99
Big Fish’s new game, developed by India-based IronCode Games, Pahelika Secret Legends has found a way to convince me otherwise,t hough, and I find myself being drawn back to playing it often. There’s a fairly interesting story, and the puzzles are tough enough to provide a challenge without busting a brain.
If you’re like me and have been ambivalent about trying a game like this out, perhaps this is the one to start with.
Dyslexia is a disability that likely affects 70 – 80 percent of people with poor reading skills, with one in five students having a language-based disability that could include dyslexia.
Many folks with dyslexia have trouble differentiating between different letters of the alphabet, many of which–especially in digital text form–look very similar. Many of the letters in our alphabet, like ‘i’ and ‘j’, or ‘n’ and ‘u’ can be mistaken for each other, especially if someone has a visual processing difference and reverses or rotates the letters when reading.
There’s a new font that aims to help, and a great eBook reader, vBookz PDF Voice Reader, has recently inclded that as a font choice in its iOS app.
EveryThink, an amazing get-it-all-done-and-in-one-place app, has just updated to version 1.3.1, bringing a host of improvements to an already pretty great app.
The new update adds Dropbox to the already existing Google Drive support, meeting invitations from within the app itself, Siri Reminder integration, and Facebook support, which brings contact photos and Facebook calendar events in automatically.
New usability features have also been added, including a guided introduction to the many features of the EveryThink app, as well as landscape orientation, so you can hold your iPhone the way you want to and still use the spatial organization central to the app’s interface.
Mint.com, the slick and extremely useful financial tracking website, also has iOS and OS X apps to natively keep an eye on your finances. The Mac app came out in early July of this year, and was updated to version 2.0 at the end of August. Today, however, it has gone from being a free app to asking for a cool $4.99.
If you haven’t had the chance to play Basion on the Xbox or your Mac, yet – heck, even if you have – you owe it to yourself to pick this game up for your iPad.
Bastion is available on Mac or the Xbox gaming console for around $15. The iPad version was released today at a fantastic $4.99, making this the best gaming deal you can get for a brand new out-of-the-gate game.