iOS games

Hone your Hollywood knowledge with Movie Crosswords

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Movie Crosswords game on iPad (screenshot)
You can play Movie Crosswords on your iPhone or your iPad.
Image: Digiluna Games

There’s nothing like a good crossword puzzle or word-search game to stimulate the brain. But a lot of themed crossword puzzles offer just a few clues and sometimes an image related to the subject. Not so with Digiluna Games’ Movie Crosswords game.

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This post is brought to you by Digiluna.
The clues in all of the easy-to-play crossword and word-search puzzles relate to the cinematic theme, making them unique — and a great way to boost your Hollywood knowledge.

5 fun iPhone games that won’t spam, scam or screw you

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Games on iPhone
There’s a bunch of fun games on iPhone… if you know where to look.
Image: D. Griffin Jones/Cult of Mac

So many games on the App Store are thinly veiled vessels for sucking away your money through in-app purchases, a problem that Apple is both the cause of and solution to. Today, I’m going to give you my five favorite non-spammy games for iPhone. They’re all highly addictive time-killers.

All of these games are devoid of manipulative game mechanics, pay-to-win schemes and scummy in-app purchases. They’re all free, included in a $4.99-a-month Apple Arcade subscription, or very cheap to buy. I don’t make a lot of time to play video games, so I’m certainly not going to waste time on a game that doesn’t respect me as a player.

Harry Potter: Magic Awakened game takes you back to Hogwarts

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‘Harry Potter: Magic Awakened’ game takes you back to Hogwarts
Harry Potter: Magic Awakened mixes role-playing with card collecting.
Image: Warner Bros. Games/Netease

Players become students at Hogwarts and engage in magical duels against dark wizards in Harry Potter: Magic Awakened, which launched Tuesday. It’s a collectible card (CCG) and massively multiplayer (MMO) game, and is free to play — with in-app purchases.

There are versions for iPhone and iPad. (Android too.)

iPhone and iPad hop on Sid Meier’s Railroads! gaming train

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Ready to build an empire by rail?
Ready to build an empire by rail?
Photo: Feral Interactive

Here’s your chance to build an empire of rail — and even beat notorious railroad barons of yesteryear at their own game. Take that, Cornelius Vanderbilt.

The classic strategy game Sid Meier’s Railroads! arrives April 5 on mobile devices including iPhone and iPad. And you can preorder now via the App Store thanks to Feral Interactive.

5 fun reasons you should be playing Spire Blast

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5 reasons you should be playing 'Spire Blast'
Spire Blast is a mix of challenging puzzles and the simple joy of blowing stuff up.
Screenshot: Orbital Knight

Spire Blast is one of the best casual games on Apple Arcade. It’s a physics-based match puzzler that involves plenty of fun destruction.

With more than 200 titles on Apple’s gaming service, it’s not easy finding the best. Here are five reasons Spire Blast is worth trying today.

A great new game, camera controls and a better budget app [Awesome Apps of the Week]

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Awesome Apps of the Week with iPhone in middle of desk
Whether you're interested in a fun iPhone game, a better way to budget, or want to master your camera controls, this week's Awesome Apps has something for you.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

The last time we published an Awesome Apps of the Week roundup, I asked for you (or your friends) to email me or tweet at me with new apps (or app updates) worth checking out. And, as evidenced here, some of you came through. Also, it seems like there have actually been some cool/interesting new apps coming out lately. Thanks to the combination of those two things, we’re back with a great camera app, a super-fun new game, and an app that’s helping me budget better!

New Pokémon card game hits iOS and macOS in beta next week

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Pokémon Trading Card Game Live
But only for those who live in Canada.
Image: The Pokémon Company

Pokémon Trading Card Game Live, the newest game from The Pokémon Company, enters beta testing on iOS and macOS next week before it makes its official debut. But there is a rather large catch (excuse the pun).

If you want to be one of the first to play Pokémon TCG Live, you must be Canadian.

Pascal’s Wager brings mouse and keyboard gaming to iPad

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Pascal's wager
The best looking game on iPad just got better.
Photo: TipWorks/Giant Network

Want to take iPadOS 14’s keyboard and mouse support for a gaming spin? Pascal’s Wager has you covered.

The dark fantasy action RPG, showcased at Apple’s 2019 iPhone event, is reportedly the first iPad game to benefit from this treatment. Apple said it would bring keyboard and mouse support to iOS devices at this year’s Worldwide Developers Conference.

These new apps will bring you some holiday cheer [Awesome Apps of the Week]

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We could all use a little Christmas cheer right about now, couldn't we?
We could all use a little Christmas cheer right about now, couldn't we?
Image: Cult of Mac

So far, 2020 has been a total Grinch. Find a little fun with these new and recently updated apps, which will guide you to Christmas light shows, plunge you into Marvel superhero brawls and even boost your darts game.

Plus, Canadian CBD connoisseurs can gain access to all the latest info on what’s available and where. And iPhone 12 Pro/Max owners can see in the dark.

Family-friendly games to play at your virtual Thanksgiving

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iOS Games on iPhone 11 Pro
There are plenty of great, classic games to play virtually with family this Thanksgiving
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

2020 has been a year of change and adjustment, and Thanksgiving is no exception. With family gatherings put on hold and more people looking for ways to interact virtually, there’s still plenty of fun and games to be had with your distant friends and family.

Whether you’re into board games, card games, or just looking for ways to interact between turkey and pie, these are some of the best iOS, Apple TV, and Mac offerings you can play virtually.

Evergreen smash hit Pokémon Go rakes in $1 billion this year alone

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birthday
Still raking in the cash more than four years later.
Photo: Niantic

When it comes to people’s spare dollars, Pokémon Go really is taking that “gotta catch ’em all” mantra seriously!

According to a new report by app analytics firm Sensor Tower, Niantic’s still-ultra-popular AR game, which launched in July 2016, has raked in $1 billion in the first 10 months of 2020 alone. Lifetime spending, meanwhile, hit $4.2 billion globally.

Pokémon Café Mix lets you form teams, download Snorlax costume Pikachu

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Pokemon
D'awwwww! Isn't he cute?
Photo: Pokémon Café Mix

Poké-hit Pokémon Café Mix just got an update that will let you join other players to form teams, as well as get your hands (virtually, that is) on a range of items, including a Snorlax costume Pikachu.

The team feature lets you to share an ID with a buddy to hook up for special events. The teams you form can be both public and private. The feature promises to add a new dynamic to the popular food-serving game.

How to fix ‘805’ error codes in Mario Kart Tour for iOS

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Fix '805' errors in Mario Kart Tour
There are some simple fixes that should get you back in the game.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Many Mario Kart Tour players continue to experience mysterious “805” error codes almost a year after the game’s release. They typically appear when attempting to download new game data.

If you’re experiencing one of these yourself, you’ll be pleased to know you’re not alone — and that there are some simple workarounds that should allow you to jump back into the action in no time at all.

Try these fixes first.

China crackdown could boot thousands of iOS games from App Store

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screenshot from App Store China
China is strictly enforcing licensing laws for game apps that generate revenue.
Screenshot: Apple

Plague Inc., the popular game pulled from the Apple App Store in China last month, may soon have company – by the thousands.

A new report predicts some 21,500 App Store for-pay titles in China could get tossed because developers will be unable to meet a June 30 deadline for having a license.

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is as bloody brilliant as ever on iOS [Review]

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Castlevania- Symphony of the Night
The classic PlayStation vampire game finally arrives on the iPhone.
Photo: Konami

Classic video game Castlevania: Symphony of the Night landed in the App Store last week and, boy, is it great!

The 23-year-old side-scroller pits Dracula’s half-son Alucard against the evil count himself. The game, widely regarded as one of the best video games of all time, has made its way onto various games platforms over the years. Now you can finally play it on your iPhone. Frankly, that’s the best news I’ve heard in ages.

Call of Duty: Mobile loses its Zombies mode because it’s not good enough

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Call of Duty: Mobile racks up amazing 100m downloads in first week
It may be back, but probably not.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Call of Duty: Mobile is losing its popular Zombies mode this month because it doesn’t meet the “level of quality” Activision expects.

It’s unclear whether Zombies, which was added last November, will return at a later date. The game’s developers are currently focused on more important aspects of Call of Duty: Mobile, like Multiplayer, Battle Royale, and Ranked Mode.

Forget anagrams, Sticky Terms is a word puzzle game with a twist

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Word puzzle game
You're not just rearranging the letters here.
Photo: Sticky Terms

Want a text-based puzzle game that will stretch your brain, help you relax and, heck, maybe even teach you some new words? Sticky Terms is the game you’ve been searching for.

Created by 28-year-old iOS game developer Philipp Stollenmayer, it’s a playable head-scratching lexicon of words covering a wide array of languages. The game presents each word as a puzzle, torn into between two and five pieces. It’s up to you, the player, to arrange them into a completed word. No timers, failures or high scores apply.

And you know what? It’s kind of addictive.

Stardew Valley’s massive 1.4 update is coming soon to iOS

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Stardew-Valley-1-4-iOS
It's just waiting for Apple's approval.
Photo: Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley’s gigantic version 1.4 content update is coming soon to iOS. It brings a new farm map, fish ponds, a new end-game mystery, and more than 60 brand-new items. There are also 14 music tracks and “hundreds” of fixes.

The update is already live on Android (it first rolled out on PC and console late last year), and it’s now waiting for Apple’s approval before it hits the App Store.

Award-winning strategy game Company of Heroes lands on iPad

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Company-of-Heroes
A must-have for any RTS fan.
Photo: Feral Interactive

Company of Heroes, the award-winning World War II strategy game, today makes the leap to iPad.

The mobile version is a complete port of the original, which first debuted in 2006 — but it has been completely rebuilt for tablets. And if you’re into real-time strategy games, you’re going to love it.

“Our aim is that the experience of playing Company of Heroes on mobile should be as fantastic as it was on desktop,” publisher Feral Interactive told Cult of Mac.

Tumble Wrestling wants to lay the smackdown on other iOS games

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Tumble Wrestling wants to lay the smackdown on other iOS games
If you smell what the, err, Block Solid is cooking.
Photo: Tumble Wrestling

There’s a new challenger hoping to seize the title of best wrestling game on iOS — a quirky, physics-based fighting game called Tumble Wrestling.

Part retro flashback to pro wrestling games on the NES and part Super Smash Bros., the game lets players compete to knock opponents out of the ring with a barrage of grappling moves.

Apple to host surprise event for apps and games on December 2

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apps
The best apps of 2019 will be showcased at the event.
Photo: Apple

Members of the press received surprise invitations from Apple this morning to attend a first-of-its-kind event to honor 2019’s top apps and games on December 2 in New York City.

Apple routinely gives out awards for the best apps of the year, but this is the first time the company has hosted an event to hand them out. Get ready for the Oscars of apps.