Gaming historians believe that there was once an age when developers didn't update their games. Instead, video game makers just released their products and that was it.
Sounds fairly unlikely to me. I mean, how did they fix all the bugs? Checkmate, historians. I await your response.
In this more 'enlightened' age, though, our Android and iOS games are patched more frequently than a repenting chain smoker.
So, to help you keep up with the gaming firmware update deluge, we'll be bringing you a weekly round-up of noteworthy new levels, characters, and bug fixes for iOS and 'droid games, as well as the weirdest and silliest patch notes going.
Right, let's get this patch party started...Skylanders: Cloud Patrol
By Vicarious Visions - buy on iPhone and iPad
"Giants are here!"
Wait, where? Quick, readers, arm yourselves!
Hang on. Pitchforks down, everyone. The patch notes have been misleading me. It turns out that the giants are only in the game, and they're actually quite friendly.
In fact, you'll be putting them to good use destroying the nasty trolls alongside the Skylanders.
The ranks of the Skylanders themselves have been filled out in this firmware update, too: say 'hello' to the fantastically named Thumpback and Eye-Brawl, and the deliciously named Hot Dog. Mmmm.Cut the Rope
By ZeptoLab - buy on iPhone
or buy on Android
Looks like Om Nom is a bit of a Sinophile. Why? Because he's celebrating Chinese New Year with a fresh pack of themed levels, thank you.
In The Lantern Box, you will find 25 new puzzles that must be negotiated with the help of floating paper lanterns.
It does appear, however, that Om Nom will still be feasting on sweeties rather than prawn crackers.Heroes and Castles
By Foursaken Media - buy on iPhone and iPad
The office coffee machine must have been put to good use by the Foursaken development team, for it's belted out a big update for Heroes and Castles
in double-quick time.
Less than three weeks after it debuted, this action-strategy game now boasts new heroes, a Siege mode (in which you play as the baddies), and, best of all, 1v1 multiplayer.
There's also a very healthy pile of post-release bug fixes and gameplay tweaks.Clay Jam
By Fat Pebble - download free on iPhone and iPad
and download free on Android
The adorable Clay Jam
has become even more adorable thanks to a delightful Valentine's-based update. You know, 'coz nothing says 'I love you' more than rolling around squishing monsters and absorbing them into your pudgy flesh.
A new game mode - the disturbingly dubbed "Monster Love" - has also surfaced in this update, along with a new set of monsters, the Love Bugs, and a few behind-the-scenes changes.
Apparently, Fat Pebble has improved the game's visuals, too, which by my reckoning takes Clay Jam
's cuteness rating dangerously close to baby hedgehog territory.Respawnables
By Digital Legends - download free on iPhone and iPad
Are you Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese, Korean, or Japanese?
If you are, congratulations! You can all now play the free multiplayer shooter Respawnables
in your own language! I know! Crazy.
In this latest update, there are some new guns and gadgets, too, like the Scoped Assault Rifle and Super Grenade.
The latter sounds particularly ominous, truth be told. I like to think it's the size of a cannonball and covered in glitter.
PG's Patch Notes of the Week Awards
This week's runner-up is:Heroes and Castles
: "NEW hero: Mage. Summons an armoured turtle-like native warrior." I'm sold.
This week's winner is:
Also Heroes and Castles
: "Captain and Longbeard buffs no longer stack." What about captains with long beards? They are surely the manliest of men?