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LATEST iPHONE FEATURES
New releases round-up - Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage, Where's My Mickey?, XCOM: Enemy Unknown, and more
By Mark Brown 20 June 2013
Game Name: New releases round-up | Publisher: Steel Media | Format: iPhone, iPad
Every Thursday, we take time out to look at the week's new and noteworthy iOS games in both words and video.

You may have noticed that we recently took a week off. With the E3 gaming mega-show and Apple's WWDC in full swing, last week proved a very quiet week for new iOS releases.

Luckily, iPhone and iPad game developers the world over have made up for it over the past seven days.

Between physics-puzzler Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage, tactics epic XCOM: Enemy Unknown, a Mickey Mouse-themed puzzler, and some horror-adventure games, it's been a pretty packed week.

But enough talk. Watch the video, then read on for prices, pretty pictures, and App Store links.



Leaping Legend
By Everplay - iPhone, iPad (Free)

Leaping Legend

I had high hopes for Leaping Legend, the new game from 1001 Attempts maker Everplay. The idea at the core of this fresh game is actually very similar to the one at the heart of 1001 Attempts.

So, you leap between walls (this time horizontally, rather than vertically), and attempt to dodge all manner of dangerous obstacles.

But Leaping Legends isn't as good as 1001 Attempts. It has weird controls (gamers' brains are not designed for running up and down walls), doesn't have that habit-forming immediate retry, is poisoned by in-app purchases, and is stuffed until its guts explode with embarrassing Reddit memes.

Kill me now.

Cover Orange 2
By FDG Entertainment - iPhone, iPad (69p / 99c)

Cover Orange 2

Cover Orange is an enjoyable (though sickeningly saccharine) little game about an anthropomorphic orange who has to hide from acid rain clouds. So, you need to hide the little fruit ball beneath a handful of objects before the storm blows through.

Sometimes, that's as easy as putting a box on his head. Sometimes, you need to construct a more complicated Rube Goldberg-style chain reaction contraption.

There are some quite ingenuous little puzzles in Cover Orange, though there's quite a bit of trial and error involved.

This sequel is more of the same. Apparently, our zesty clementine pal got stuck in a wormhole and popped into medieval times. I'm not quite sure what effect that has on the game, besides boxes being replaced by treasure chests.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown
By Firaxis - iPhone, iPad (£13.99 / $19.99)

XCOM Enemy Unknown

In XCOM: Enemy Unknown, you take part in a series of tense turn-based battles against alien scumbags, where you'll have to use cover and smart strategy to keep your small squad of soldiers alive.

XCOM: Enemy Unknown has permadeath, you see. So, yep, dead soldiers are gone for good.

You'll also have to look after an enormous underground facility, where you'll conduct research, engineer weapons, hire new troops, put satellites into orbit, balance the budget, and shoot down UFOs. All while keeping every country safe from E.T.

It's an enormous game, and a largely faithful port of last year's PC version. So, don't let the monster price point put you off - this terrific tactics game is worth every penny.

Forever Lost: Episode 2
By Glitch Games - iPhone (£1.49 / $1.99), iPad (£1.99 / $2.99)

Forever Lost Episode 2

I enjoyed the first Forever Lost game. It was a pretty standard escape-the-room puzzler, with quite basic graphics. But it had an intriguing storyline, an eerie atmosphere, and - most importantly - top puzzles.

Glitch Games doesn't stray far from that winning formula with this follow-up. You're still solving cryptic puzzles with numbers, keys, jigsaw pieces, buttons, and combinations. And you can still take photos of curious glyphs and markings so you can carry your hints with you.

I can't wait to play more and see where this storyline goes. If you liked The Room, then do check out this pair of puzzlers. Now.

Lineable
By Physmo - iPhone (Free)

Lineable

Lineable, from Mos Speedrun dev Phsymo, is a pretty clever spin on the whole match-three puzzler system.

In this one, you need to run your finger over interconnected wires in a big messy tangle of cords and circuits. It's a simple but enjoyable time sink.

Sadly, any hope of competing on the leaderboards is just ruined by some overzealous power-ups. One particular 'boost' highlights all the possible matches in bright colours, making it incredibly easy to rack up massive scores and multipliers.

Gloomy Hollow
By Skyrock Games - iPhone, iPad (69p / 99c)

Gloomy Hollow

Here's a cheeky little Diablo-like loot whore action-RPG for you.

Gloomy Hollow ticks all the right boxes, so, yes, you will complete quests, rummage through chests, and shoot hundreds of cannon fodder baddies here.

Sure, it's not going to win any prizes for originality or creativity or even quality, and it's stuffed with in-app purchases. But if you're craving an iOS game in this understaffed genre, what else are you going to do?

Play Gameloft's Dungeon Hunter 4!? I didn't think so.

Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage
By Nitrome - iPhone (69p / 99c), iPad (£1.99 / $2.99)

Icebreaker A Viking Voyage

Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage is a cute and clever mixture of games like Cut the Rope and Fruit Ninja.

In each level, you need to get some trapped Viking chums back to your longboat. How? By chopping up bits of ice, lopping off ropes, and solving little puzzles.

It's funny, absolutely heaving with content, and contains some of the most gorgeous pixel-art we've seen in a while. Angry Birds maker Rovio made a very good call when it choose Icebreaker: A Viking Voyage as the lead game from its new publishing initiative Rovio Stars. Get this game.

Home - a Unique Horror Adventure
By Benjamin Rivers - iPhone, iPad (£1.99 / $2.99)

Home

Home comes with some very strict requirements: turn off the lights. Put on headphones. Finish it in a single sitting.

But they all make sense. This indie PC port is a creepy and engrossing little horror game. And it demands your full attention.

As you wander about the claustrophobic house, encased in the glow of a torch, you'll get to edit the events of the story by making different decisions. In the end, it's worth playing through multiple times to see how the story changes in accordance with your choices.

This iOS version is a little shoddy. It's way too easy to skip text by accident, and there are some graphical glitches in the retro sprite work. But if you're into experimental interactive fiction, it's well worth sticking with.

Where's My Mickey?
By Disney - iPhone (69p / 99c), iPad (£1.49 / $1.99)

Wheres My Mickey

Disney is really milking this "Where's My... ?" franchise, isn't it?

Following in the footsteps of Swampy the Alligator and Perry the Platypus comes a new entry in the series, starring Mickey Mouse.

The main objective in Where's My Mickey? is the same as in all previous franchise entries. You re-route some water to a pipe by tunnelling through dirt, avoiding harmful liquids, and overcoming obstacles. This one includes weather effects like clouds and wind, and some cute Mickey cartoon cutscenes.

It's not the best entry in the franchise. And if you've never played this excellent puzzler before, you'll get way more value for money from the original Where's My Water? But it's a fine little follow-up for those still obsessed with re-routing water.

Spiral Episode 1
By Pixel Hero Games - iPhone, iPad (£2.99 / $4.99)

Spiral Episode 1

Spiral's creator is the latest game developer to promise a touch-friendly control system for an action game. And Pixel Hero Games is mostly on the money with its promise.

You tap to move, tap on baddies to fight, tap on your character to do a defensive blast, tap here, hold there. It works well, actually.

The actual game looks interesting. It's powered by the Unreal Engine and boasts rather spiffy visuals. It even has voice acting and a halfway intriguing fiction. This is definitely something that we'll investigate further.

Zorbie
By The Game Atelier - iPhone, iPad (£1.99 / $2.99)

Zorbie

Zorbie
is a bizarre little game. You control this weird little bloke who likes to lob his medieval axe at harmless birds. The main concept of the game is simple: you throw the axe up to murder birds, and try to make sure the weapon doesn't land on your head on the way back down.

It's simple but fun. The bonkers music and art remind me of weird French comics or unintelligible Japanese arcade games. One of the characters is called "Dickhead". How did that get past Apple's App Store approvals team?

A weird and kind of wonderful game.
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