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[Update] What's new? DEVICE 6, Batman Arkham Origins, Neurokult, and more
By Mark Brown 18 October 2013
Game Name: New releases round-up | Publisher: Steel Media | Format: iPhone, iPad
At the end of every week, we take time out to look at the new and noteworthy iOS games from the past seven days in both words and video.

This week, we're mixing things up a little. Yes, again. We're introducing "This week's top pick" so that you know which game you simply need to download... without having to read through 15 million descriptions.

We're also adding "Also out this week..." so that we can cover even more games (and make sure nothing falls between the cracks).

And we'll publish this story while we shoot and upload the video so you don't have to wait for my pitifully slow broadband to get started.

Let us know what you'd like to see us cover in this article, or which of these games you plan to download, or what your favourite animal is in the comments below. My fave is the monkey.

Update: Now with video.





This week's top pick

DEVICE 6
By Simogo - buy on iPhone and iPad (£2.49 / $3.99)

DEVICE 6

The new game from Year Walk developer Simogo is tough to describe. DEVICE 6 is essentially a text adventure, but the descriptions are laid out like a map. So, corridors are long thin sentences, and rooms are neatly packed paragraphs.

It's a unique way to package a game, and this offers you a better sense of place than your typical gamebook. The actual gameplay revolves around a handful of ingenious multi-part puzzles and riddles. They're all quite brilliant and involved, and most are even better than the smartest conundrums in Year Walk.

The game's also got a stunning '60s-style design, an unnerving psychological story, and plenty of surprises. If you like adventure games, you've got to get this one.



Batman Arkham Origins
By Warner Bros - download on iPhone and iPad (Free)

Batman Arkham Origins

The new Batman game for mobile is a touchscreen-tapping brawler. In in, the Dark Knight is pitted against every assassin in Gotham.

You'll tap and swipe on these enemies to beat up these masked goons, and use 'guard' to block incoming attacks. It's a bit simple, but somewhat satisfying.

The game is quite heavily free-to-play, so you've got an energy system and a huge economy of unlockable boosts, upgrades, and Batsuits. But you get a pretty substantial (and gorgeous) brawler for nothing, so it's tough to complain.

Indigo Lake
By 3 Cubes Research - buy on iPhone and iPad (£1.49 / $1.99)

Indigo Lake

Indigo Lake is the latest Slenderman-style horror shooter (we haven't had one of those in a while, have we?) from the guys behind The Woods. It's a dark, spooky game, and the claustrophobic atmosphere is pretty perfect.

I'm not sure if it actually gets more action oriented. The only time I've used my pistol is to blast some wooden bars. And I hope the scares are better than the comical suicidal crates with which I've had to deal.

But if you like horror games, this is definitely worth some further investigation. Our review is on the way.

Fist of Awesome
By I Fight Bears - buy on iPhone and iPad (£2.49 / $3.99)

Fist of Awesome

Tim Burr is the last free man in a post-apocalyptic world that's dominated by woodland critters. His job in this cute retro brawler is to punch every deer and bear in sight.

The controls are great, and the game dev clearly has a sense of humour (just wait until you get to the bear strip club). It is, however, a very traditional brawler, so you might find punching the same enemy a hundred times a little boring after a while.

MIMPI
By Crescent Moon Games - buy on iPhone and iPad (£1.49 / $1.99)

MIMPI

Any game in which you can pee on a fire hydrant to save your progress is alright in my book. In MIMPI, you follow a tiny dog on a surreal platforming adventure to hunt down his missing master. You get to manipulate the environment by moving platforms and solving simple puzzles.

The puzzles are never too difficult and some of the jumping bits can be a little fiddly. But this is a satisfying little game with an arresting visual style and a weird, otherworldly vibe.

Pocket Titans
By Kumotion - buy on iPhone and iPad (69p / 99c)

Pocket Titans

Pocket Titans is an RPG that's played out on the shifting game board of a match-three puzzler. Your heroes and enemies sit on the board, and you can shunt entire rows and columns to move the warriors about. Some characters need range, some work best up close, and some like to be diagonal from their enemy.

It's a smart idea, and it leads to some ingenious tactical puzzles. There's a full story and a multiplayer mode. Some underwhelming presentation aside, this is a fun little puzzle-RPG.

Rabbids Big Bang
By Ubisoft - buy on iPhone and iPad (69p / 99c)

Rabbids Big Bang

The latest game to star those insufferable squawking Rabbids is an Angry Birds Space-inspired physics-puzzler. In each level, you knock a Rabbid into orbit with a baseball bat, and then use the planet's gravity well (and a handy jet pack) to get around.

Missions involve picking up coins, landing on other planets, and finishing other objectives. The controls are floaty and hard to get to grips with, and we'll have to see how all the buyable boosts and upgrades change things.

Neurokult
By Joerg Doneit - buy on iPhone and iPad (£1.49 / $1.99)

Neurokult

Neurokult is an addictive score-chasing arcade game.

The idea is simple: coloured nodes fly across the screen, and you must "derezz" each one before it disappears by tapping. But you can only tap when you've changed the screen colour so that it's the same as the node.

You can also chain together nodes with a swipe, and must avoid neutron bombs. Oh, and the whole thing plays out at a lightning-fast pace, turning the whole thing into a thrilling neon-dipped Whac-A-Mole nightmare. Good fun, and worth a look.

Robo & Bobo
By Nice Touch Games - buy on iPhone and iPad (69p / 99c)

Robo and Bobo

Robo & Bobo is a game about simple programming. Rust bucket robot Robo wants to get to his bear. So, you give him a string of commands - like turn left, jump, press a button - that will hopefully get him to his teddy.

Its a good idea, and it looks absurdly great. But those gorgeous graphics come at a cost - lengthy loading screens between stages. Couple that with an annoying animation to sit through after every level and it all gets a bit tedious, sadly.

Paint it Back
By Casual Labs - download on iPhone and iPad (Free)

Paint it Back

Paint it Back is the latest picross game - a fabulous Japanese logic puzzler in which you uncover an image by deducing the position of individual pixels - on the App Store. In this one, you are in charge of restoring blank paintings in an art gallery.

It's lovingly presented, has a great style, and contains a lot for free (there's a £1.99 / $2.99 in-app purchase to get the rest). It even has a very dependable pinch and zoom system for the larger puzzles, making it perfectly playable on iPhone.

Disclaimer: I previously released my own picross game on the App Store.

Mega Dead Pixel
By Chillingo - buy on iPhone and iPad (Free)

Mega Dead Pixel

Chillingo-published timewaster Mega Dead Pixel is all about precision. You must guide a falling white pixel so that it scrapes past big black pixel-art shapes (thus 'painting' them with colour) without actually touching the shapes.

And while turning into the eponymous super-pixel that can ramrod through black shapes is good fun, the actual goal of precisely lining them up into a very specific column is a fiddly (especially on the touchscreen) and often unenjoyable chore.

I like the art, but this game is simply more frustrating than fun.



Also out this week…

Machinarium Pocket Edition
By Amanita Design - buy on iPhone (£1.49 / $1.99)

Machinarium Pocket Edition

Utterly charming robot adventure game Machinarium has been squeezed down to iPhone size. Amanita makes good use of pinch and zoom here to let you hunt down hotspots.

CSR Classics
By NaturalMotion - download on iPhone and iPad (Free)

CSR Classics

NaturalMotion's rhythm-driven drag racer CSR Racing gets a spin-off with old school motors and meaty muscle cars. You're still switching gears and applying boosts to outdo your opponents, mind.

Arc Squadron: Redux
By Psyonix - download on iPhone and iPad (Free)

Arc Squadron Redux

Silver Award-winning space shooter Arc Squadron returns in a free-to-play remake. It's largely the same slick Star Fox-alike, but now with more in-app purchases. Yay?

Mr. Ludo
By YoAmbulante - download on iPhone and iPad (Free)

Mr Ludo

A free-to-play Parcheesi-inspired game with real-time online multiplayer, a training mode, and lush 3D graphics.

Runaway: The Dream of the Turtle - Part 1 By Bulkypix - buy on iPhone and iPad (£2.99 / $4.99)

Runaway Dream of the Turtle

The second in Pendulo's spotty point-and-click trilogy is probably the best of the bunch. Some of the puzzles are clunkers and the comedy is cringeworthy, but it's worth a look.
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