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 IPHONE FEATURE
Pocket Gamer's Top 10 Games of the Year 2012 - iPhone Edition
Cream of the crop
 
Top 10 iPhone charts iPhone, thumbnail 1
It's been another incredible year for Apple and its increasingly-popular App Store.

iOS developers have conjured up a staggering number of Pocket Gamer Award-winning titles over the course of the past 12 months.

To be honest, it's been rather difficult to whittle an entire year's worth of excellent new iPhone apps down to just ten.

Beat Sneak Bandit, Squids Wild West, Angry Birds Star Wars, and dozens more iPhone games could easily have been included on the list below. But, they didn't.

These, however, did...

Rayman Jungle Run
By Ubisoft - buy for iPhone



Rayman Jungle Run
is great for many reasons. It looks amazing, for starters, but that's hardly surprising considering it's powered by the same engine that powers console hit Rayman Origins.

It's challenging enough to keep you entertained throughout, too, and it's been designed specifically for touch-enabled devices.

It's an auto-run platformer, you see, meaning you can focus all your attention on avoiding obstacles and making precision jumps.

Punch Quest
By Madgarden - buy for iPhone



In Madgarden's brawler, the developer employs the same auto-run mechanic that Ubi does in Rayman Jungle Run. This is a good thing.

Instead of worrying about the speed at which you're running, then, you can concentrate on uppercutting skeletons in the face, jabbing mean ogres in the solar plexus, and riding on the back of a dinosaur that fires lasers out of its gaping gob.

Enough said.

New Star Soccer

By New Star Games - buy for iPhone



If you're looking for a casual kickabout, New Star Soccer definitely isn't for you.

If you're wanting to buy expensive apartments, date gorgeous women, and generally live the life of a real-world footballer, on the other hand, it'll be right up your alley.

New Star Soccer is stupidly addictive, so be prepared to sink countless hours into it.

Need for Speed: Most Wanted

By FireMonkeys - buy for iPhone



Need for Speed: Most Wanted is proof that Apple's iPhone can compete with dedicated gaming handhelds like the PS Vita and Nintendo's 3DS.

Put simply, there's no doubting that this is a 'triple-A' title.

This iPhone version of EA's latest racer bagged an extremely shiny Pocket Gamer Gold Award at review, while its Vita counterpart picked up a Silver. I refer you to the opening paragraph of this segment. Yep, exactly.

Super Hexagon
By Terry Cavanagh - buy for iPhone



Super Hexagon is a minimalist action-packed title from indie sensation Terry Cavanagh, who's the guy behind both rock-solid platformer VVVVVV and Don't Look Back.

This game is all about survival. You take control of a small craft that's stuck in orbit around a hexagonal sun, and attempt to avoid the waves of barriers that move towards you.

Simple, right? Wrong. Very wrong. It's tough as nails.

True Skate
By True Axis - buy for iPhone



Fancy yourself as the next Tony Hawk, do you? Think you can pull off the fabled 900, do you? Here's your chance to prove your skills.

True Skate is one of the most authentic skating games on the App Store. In it, you can perform a multitude of cool-looking tricks with simple flicks and taps of your device's display.

Our favourite feature: the fact you can mess up a trick without breaking your neck.

ZiGGURAT

By Action Button Entertainment - buy for iPhone



You're the last human on earth.

You're stood atop a large pyramid watching never-ending waves of aliens assault your once-precious homeland.

Your death is inevitable.

ZiGGURAT is an endless-shooter in which you're tasked with a single mission: wipe out as many intergalactic invaders as you can before they melt your face clean off.

Zookeeper Battle
By Kiteretsu - buy for iPhone



We'll be blunt: Zookeeper Battle is a crazy match-three puzzler. And we do mean CRAZY. We're talking John Wayne Gacy crazy.

In this game, Kiteretsu gives you 30 seconds to match three or more cute and colourful animals. Certain animals increase your defense capabilities, whereas others improve your attacks.

Once your 30 seconds are over, your in-game avatar will duke it out with the avatar of another player from somewhere else in the world.

FIFA 13

By Electronic Arts - buy for iPhone



FIFA 13 for the iPhone may not be as complex or as challenging as its console counterparts, but, boy, is it fun.

It's fast and fluid, and it handles perfectly.

You know the drill here. You can choose your favourite team (Barcelona) from some of the world's most prestigious leagues, and then spend 90 minutes trying to slide tackle Wayne Rooney.

VS. Racing 2

By Maciek Drejak Labs - buy for iPhone



This top-down racer doesn't look very special from afar, but didn't your mother ever teach you not to judge a book by its cover?

VS. Racing 2 is incredibly fun. Play on your own, and it's a pretty standard racing game. Get some friends involved, however, and it becomes a Mario Kart-style title full of oil slicks and other power-ups.

There's no blue shell, though. Thankfully.
 

Reviewer photo
Anthony Usher 26 December 2012
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Joined:
Oct 2011
Post count:
19
divisionbell7 | 17:10 - 31 December 2012
No Bastion, waking mars, walking dead or arc Squardon? Really??
Joined:
Aug 2012
Post count:
79
RockinIt | 21:13 - 27 December 2012
Hmm can't agree with a lot on this list, no Bastion? On Metacritic it's the most well reviewed iOS game of the year with a score of 94, it's been a huge hit on other formats like Windows/PC, and the controls were optimised perfectly for iDevices. It's probably the most enjoyable gaming experience I've had on on my iPhone..probably ever, everything from the gameplay, graphics, the narration, it all oozes class, there's no in app purchases to ruin or alter the experience.

Waking Mars should also be on the list, again another it's another genuinely interesting and innovative title, you guys gave it a gold award!

I'm ashamed to say this as we're talking about EA lol, but Fifa 13 is wonderful on iOS, everything that was wrong with Fifa 12 has been fixed, and then some, I'm glad to see that on the list!
Joined:
Oct 2012
Post count:
32
Marco Latini | 18:46 - 27 December 2012
Really poor list....these are the less interesting games of the year....what about fairway solitaire, bastion, inkoboto, kingdom rush, mickey shorts, nihilumbra, walking mars, bad piggies, wimp, pudding monsters, anomaly korea.....do i have to go on? Jesus Christ....
Joined:
Dec 2008
Post count:
1336
klouud | 17:23 - 27 December 2012
Not trying to be a jerk... but I could care less about any of these games. Poor list.
Joined:
Dec 2012
Post count:
1
@AonesoftGames | 10:19 - 27 December 2012
Why don't have Zombie Smasher HD? it's really a very interesting iOS game! You should be have a try!
Joined:
Jul 2012
Post count:
490
Contest Chris | 08:55 - 27 December 2012
Ok yeah memorization is needed, but then your reflexes become so quick it helps. On average, to get the latter levels flawless, it took me 5 runs, which is not too bad really since each level is about a minute long.
Joined:
Jul 2012
Post count:
490
Contest Chris | 08:52 - 27 December 2012
@Eriatarke, 15 levels in I felt the same as you. I wanted to stop playing. It was just death upon death - some levels my deaths exceeded 100 even! But then I persevered, and by Lvl 30 the game suddenly became "easy" even though its difficulty was actually increasing.

I never got into the endless mode though. Waste of time for me personally.

Anyway, I never attempted to get perfect scores while on my first run through. I didn't care how many deaths I took either...I just played right till Lvl 50 and enjoyed the little story progression. Then, once you go back to collect the artifacts and attempt to get flawless runs, you can do that with almost two eyes close!
Joined:
Nov 2012
Post count:
25
rodgerrodger | 07:32 - 27 December 2012
Rayman and Super Hexagon are both excellent games, both among my favorites too (I also really liked Squids Wild West and Angry Birds Star Wars). I haven't played any of the others to be able to comment on them.

Except for Punch Quest which I'm torn on. The original release was great, but because the developer couldn't figure out how to monetize the game they basically ruined it since then. The cost for upgrades now is outrageous. I shouldn't have updated the app.
Joined:
Dec 2012
Post count:
90
Eriatarka | 20:05 - 26 December 2012
The difficulty of Polara was too screwed up for it to be fun longterm in my opinion - it was too easy to finish the levels due to infinite lives, but (after the first 15 levels or so) basically impossible to complete them perfectly unless you memorized everything. The endless mode was fun though.
Joined:
Jul 2012
Post count:
490
Contest Chris | 18:26 - 26 December 2012
Yeah decent list. Where is Lili and Polara though?
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