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Mid-week iOS releases: Autumn Dynasty, Virtua Tennis Challenge, Slingshot Racing, Air Mail, and more

Bring it on

New iPhone, iPad, and Android Games iPhone, thumbnail 1
As you may know from previous mid-week articles, normally we send Ant into the future to report on games that will be making their way over to the US and UK from midnight on the Wednesday.

Alas, a malfunctioning in the time manipulation process has resulted in two Anthonys existing on the same timeline as each other, a problem that was cleverly solved by 'removing' the clone and 'disposing' of it in the PG Towers Dungeon.

Due to a breakout earlier in the week, though, we've had to quarantine vast sections of the building, which unfortunately included the wing the real Anthony was residing in at the time.

So, it's fallen to me to pick up the baton and create a clone to bring you the best of tomorrow's iOS releases. All I have to do is press this green button, flick the hamster to make it run faster, and...


Autumn Dynasty
By Bulkypix - buy for iPad

It's Okami-meets-Total War in this striking and unique-looking RTS game for iPad, in which you command your Chinese forces to overrun and outplay the opposition - AI or human.

This is one title where I'd heartily recommend viewing the trailer, as it looks rather special.

A review of Autumn Dynasty will be coming soon, but if you can't wait until then, you can buy it for £2.99 / $4.99 from midnight tonight.

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Air Mail
By Chillingo - download for iPhone and iPad

Do you like Pilotwings? Do you like putting out fires with a bucket suspended from a biplane? Do you like lamps?

If the answer to all of those questions was 'yes', then you might be interested in Chillingo's first new game of the week, Air Mail. This sees you barrel rolling and colliding into the water, as you fly around some rather beautiful-looking islands.

The crashing part is optional.

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Virtua Tennis Challenge
By Sega - download for iPhone and iPd

*Thwack* Oh, hi there. You've just caught me in the middle of a tense rally with fictional sporting titan Theron Tenniel on Virtua Tennis Challenge.

*Thwonk* Yes, that's right. The game that managed to pick up a Pocket Gamer Gold Award when it launched on Xperia Play earlier in the year.

*Boink* There's an SPT world tour mode, 18 stadia, and some ultra-smooth animations to 'love'. Ah-ha-ha!

*Crack* Ahh, my head! I think I'm bleeding! Someone call for the physio!

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Slingshot Racing
By Crescent Moon Games - download for iPhone and iPad

'Neeeoow!', 'screech!', and other such noises are likely to come flowing from your voice box as you fling the race cars of Slingshot Racing around the attractive Retina display-supporting tracks.

Boasting multiplayer for up to four racers, unique controls, and some arcade staples - such as jumps and speed boosts - Slingshot Racing looks like it could be another hit for Crescent Moon.

Will it defeat the might of rival unique touchscreen racer DrawRace 2? We'll let you know soon.

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Zombie Ace
By Hothead Games - download for iPhone and iPad

Have we had enough of games featuring floating coins and an aircraft? No! Well, not if the aircraft is packed full of bizarre zombies on a mission to land in cities around the world and eat brains, that is.

Hothead's excellent sense of humour is on full display in its latest casual title, with the graphics and concept both being darkly brilliant.

And if you didn't at least smile at the sound of the flight attendant in the video, you're (un)dead to me.

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Tiny Plane
By Chillingo - download for iPhone and iPad

Oh, hello, it's another game featuring an aircraft and floating coins. It seems jet planes are the new busses.

Tiny Plane differs from Zombie Ace, however, by featuring a funky cartoon dog piloting the plane. Also, it packs in four-way multiplayer, homing missiles, and fruit! Fruit, damn it!

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Sakura Slash
By Gamevil - download for iPhone and iPad

Fruit! No, wait, sorry - we're onto the next game, already? What's going on?

In fairness, Sakura Slash does take its cues from Halfbrick's popular Fruit Ninja from a mechanics point of view. So, you're slashing away at on-screen... err... 'things' in an effort to fight back against a host of evil demons.

There are upgrades to be earned, skills and new brushes to claim, and it's free to download.

Uh-oh, here come the Men in Black / The galaxy defenders...

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Men in Black 3
By Gameloft - download for iPhone and iPad

Actually released prior to this article going out (but still in the mid-week vicinity), Gameloft's latest blockbuster tie-in is a little unusual as far as the much-maligned category of movie spin-off games go.

Rather than play out as a series of disconnected and unsatisfying mini-games, Men in Black 3 is a freemium base builder - with turn-based strategic combat on the side - in which you manage the good guys dressed in black, remember that / just in case we ever face-to-face and make contact.

I really need to stop quoting that song.

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Subway Surfers
By Kiloo Games - download for iPhone and iPad

Time for your weekly dose of promising-looking 3D casual endless-running game (that sentence was shorter in my head).

Subway Surfers sees you dashing and jumping between trains, collecting coins, and leaping on what appears to be a Magical Skateboard. It's also free, which is always nice.

I'm not sure if a game based around skating and running down railway tracks picking up goodies is a particularly good message to send out to kids, mind, but then I also believe they should stay off my damn lawn. Hooligans! The lot of them!

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Defenders Chronicles II: Heroes of Athelia
By Gimka Entertainment - download for iPhone and iPad

How do you make tower defence fresh again? Turn it on its side! Probably.

Defenders Chronicles II: Heroes of Athelia (gotta love those fantasy subtitles) takes the TD template and then puts it into the second dimension.

It also coats everything with a very thick layer of RPG mechanics, so expect upgrades, levelling-up, looting, and skill point-ing. That's a real verb, by the way.

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Reviewer photo
Will Wilson 23 May 2012
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