App Store Review: Galaga Remix

1 06 2009

Addictive recreation of an old-time favorite.


Galaga Remix was created by Namco, and it is a brilliant remake of the original arcade game. Galaga Remix includes an updated version as well as the original 1981 Galaga. The old version of the game does allow you to reclaim a captured ship so you can have double the firepower with dual ships like in the old arcade game, however this app really shines with the updated version. The new Galaga’s graphics are much easier on the eyes, and includes new boss battles, multiple upgrades for your ship, and plenty of levels.

The rest of the review is after the break. Read more…

App Store Review: Flight Control

13 04 2009

I know this is a bit late for a review but better late then never!


Flight Control, created by Firemint, is an addictive little game where you draw the flight paths of different aircraft to their landing strips, basically you are an air traffic controller. There are 4 different types of aircraft, a blue helicopter, a yellow Cessna type plane, and two different kinds of red jets, one being faster than the other.


The graphics are simple but clean. There isn’t any in-game music while you are directing things, and you can’t listen to music and the game sounds at the same time. The game sounds are helpful, they warn you when aircraft get close to each other, and ding whenever you land one, but if you are playing a long time it is better to listen to music. Otherwise, the game keeps track of your statistics (most likely aircraft to crash, most planes landed, last game’s planes landed) so you can see how you’ve improved.

This game could use some improvements, like a fast-forward, especially at the beginning. Every time you restart, you have to wait a long time for airplanes to show up, which makes the start of each run very slow. Otherwise, the graphics are a bit simple, a plane or helicopter landing just shows them fade away as opposed to actually landing. When there is a mid-air collision, they just blink to show they have hit each other. It would be more interesting (and a better finale to each game) if they exploded. Lastly, a few more gameplay elements would be good, like if they had clouds float over the airport to make it harder to see what is going on. However, all of these minor faults don’t hurt the game enough to avoid buying it.

Flight Control is addictive and entertaining, and it only costs $0.99, which is a great price for this game! You can pick it up from the App Store here.

App Store Review: WordsWorth from 99 Games

1 04 2009

99 Games was nice enough to give us a review copy of their popular game, WordsWorth. Let’s take a look.


WordsWorth is a fun unique game for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Basically, its a combination of a solo player game of Boggle, and a ever changing word search.  Hexagonal tiles are spaced out along the board, and its your job to earn enough points to advance to the next level. It keeps getting harder, level after level, up to level 30. The game as two modes, Timed and Classic. I really preferred the classic mode, as a way to just relax and keep me busy when I had nothing else to do, since I always have my iPod Touch on me.

See more about WordsWorth, after the jump.

Read more…

App Store Review: Time Crisis Strike

30 03 2009

This week I got to play through Time Crisis Strike for the iPhone. This game has a great nostalgia effect on those of us who’ve played the arcade version.


Time Crisis Strike is a rail-shooter, fire-and-duck game just like his arcade brothers. Your goal is to stop the evil Wild Dog from his new (unknown) plot to cause mayhem. It’s a single campaign with 3 stages totaling 23 screens, and you face off against about a half dozen different types of enemies. Controls are simple, touch where you want to shoot, tilt the iPhone forward to duck and reload, then tilt it back to stand up and continue to shoot.


This game is a lot of fun, especially because it’s Time Crisis. Its graphics are good, and the music and sounds are all great. There were no noticeable bugs or gameplay issues, the game was very well polished. They also have five unlockable “Crisis Missions”, which each challenges you to accomplish a specific task, like only shoot the yellow soldiers. Overall the Time Crisis feel of the game is great, although it does lack the light-gun and foot-pedal, it is a great port to the iPhone.


The only drawbacks to this game are that even though you have a tilt-meter for ducking, sometimes it feels like a button would be much more useful. Otherwise, the game can feel short if you only play through the arcade mode once, but honing your skill at this game can be very entertaining, plus the unlockable challenge missions, or you can challenge friend to see who can get the highest score.

Fans of Time Crisis absolutely have to get this game. Otherwise, if you just want a good rail-shooter, Time Crisis Strike is the way to go. You can pick it up from the App Store for $5.99

Flip Mino HD Review

25 03 2009

I had the opportunity to get a review unit of (Recently acquired by Cisco, see last week’s Roundup) Pure Digital’s Flip Mino HD.

Flip Mino HD a

The entire Flip line is known for their ease of use, quality, and portability, but this is the first Flip to be High Definition capable, with a resolution of 720p. Since the Mino boasts a rather small size of 3.94″ x 1.97″ x 0.63″, and a light weight of 3.3oz, it’s really easy to throw into your pocket when you go out. It’s really great as a day to day video camera, when you just want to get together with some friends and throw something up on YouTube. It’s also a great starter camera for a tween, so that they can make their first home movies. It even includes some basic video editing and sharing software called FlipShare, which comes right on the camera. FlipShare is really nice, because it allows you to do some basic editing, like trimming and combining clips together, or adding a background audio track, and upload it directly to YouTube. However, if you want to use the clips in another program, like embedding a video into a PowerPoint, or cataloging them in Picasa, you will have to convert them first.

Overall, the Flip Mino HD was really fun and easy to use. All you have to do is hit the big red recording button, and you’re ready to go! You line up your shots, and playback your shots on the built in 1.5″ screen. Personally, I think it would have been nice if it was a little bit bigger. The camera also had battery life, you get about two hours of recording off a single charge, and you can record about one hour of HD video using the cameras built in 4 GB of storage.

Read the rest of the review, after the jump.

Read more…

App Store Review: Rasta Monkey

23 03 2009


Rasta Monkey is a 2D platformer where you play as a (gasp) monkey swinging in the trees trying to collect fruit to make smoothies. It uses a nice little physics engine to accomplish jumps, swings, and some puzzles. You’ll have to contend with monsters and some tricky jumps to finish each level.

The game only comes with 10 levels, two of which are tutorial levels. The levels aren’t very long, though they do have a lot of variety. Each level you are given a set amount of each type of fruit to collect. The game definitely doesn’t make it hard to collect these fruit, and a lot of the time you’ll find you’ve collected more than you needed. It never penalizes you for falling out of the trees, which is a huge relief in some of the harder areas. All it will do it set you back to your last checkpoint, which are never too far off.


The controls work surprising well. You hold the the corner of the screen where you wish to go, and hold with two fingers to swing on the branch. If you let go of both fingers at the same time you’ll jump, or you can abort the jump by letting go of one finger at a time.

The art is cartoony and colorful, which fits the game very well. The music, even though there seems to only be two songs, are catchy and, at worst, can just be turned off.

The only downsides to the game are its intermittent slow-downs and some frustrating monsters you face later on in the game. On my first generation iPod Touch when the camera zoomed out I’d occasionally run into a frame-rate drop. It wasn’t terrible, it was still playable, though it does makes the game feel buggy. Lastly, certain monsters are just plain annoying to get past. Some are big and move fast, and constantly knock you off the branches. It gets tricky, you either have to move fast and nail the jumps to avoid them, or get lucky and have the monster boot you in the right direction.

For the (currently introductory) $1.99 price tag it is definitely worth the couple days of fun you’ll get from this game. It isn’t a huge amount of content, but the actual game has a lot of variety and was put together very well.

Using Twitter on your iPhone: Tweetie 1.3 Review

22 03 2009

Tweetie is by far the cleanest, most versatile Twitter client I have ever used for the iPhone. Find out what makes Tweetie stand out from the rest below!


Twitter, one of the most pervasive social networking services has grown to encompass over 6 million active monthly users. It seems that everyone from President Obama to Britney Spears is now tweeting everything from breaking news to interesting articles and cool events going on. If you’re new to Twitter, or don’t have an account, you should sign up here. If you’re on a Mac be sure to check out my previous article on “Getting the Most from Twitter on your Mac” to get started from your computer.

Twitter Main View Tweeite 1.3

The iPhone provides one of the greatest interfaces to Twitter seen to date- arguably much nicer than the Twitter web interface or other Twitter (computer based) software- with its integrated camera, GPS (or GPS like capabilities) and multi-touch you can not only stay on top of Twitter but interact with it in new ways. Although there are dozens of Twitter applications for the iPhone platform, there are only a few that really stand out.

Twitter Profile Page Tweetie 1.3

Tweetie implements the full Twitter API- which means all the possibilities Twitter offers to developers is implemented in Tweetie. Upon first glance, Tweetie displays tweets and messages making use of the iChat style bubbles. At the bottom menu you can quickly switch between your Tweets, @Replies, Messages, Favorites and More- which includes “My Profile”, “Go to User”, “Nearby”, “Trends” and “Search”.

Twitter Location Tweetie 1.3

Tweetie is very simple, easy to use and works the way you expect it to. Everything you would want to do is available to you fast- starting with support for multiple Twitter accounts, updating your location, browsing tweets by location and even Twitter searching and trend viewing. You can view links posted in tweets through the built in Safari browser or even re-tweet the link! And all links posted are automatically shrunk with the service. Even photo uploading is simple, as Tweetie allows for quick access to your photo library or camera and will compress and upload each photo you tweet to

Until Tweetie came around in November 2008, Twitterific and Twinkle respectively held the titles of the best paid and unpaid Twitter clients for the iPhone. Although Tweetie costs $2.99, it clearly provides quite simply the best Twitter experience on the iPhone OS platform. If you are on Twitter, this application is a must have.

iStat for iPhone Review: Hardware Statistics, Information, Remote Computer Monitoring and RAM Management

20 03 2009

The iStat application is quite easily the best hardware monitoring application available on the App Store today.

iStat for iPhone Icon

Bjango, an exclusive iPhone developer team is a new venture of iSlayer who developed iStat Pro, iStat Menus and Organized. The team has also published a number of high quality applications prior to iStat including Darkness, Jobs, Cities and Phases.

iStat Pro Widget Display

For those familiar with the iSlayer team and use iStat Pro or iStat Menus already know why iStat makes for a killer iPhone application. Keeping on top of your hardware is a crucial- not only will it allow your iPhone to preform better but extend your battery life. While there are a handful of other applications that promise to do the same in the App Store and even Cydia or, iStat does it the best and with more features without question.


From first launching the application, you are presented with a well laid out screen with all of your vital statistics in a number of panes laid out before you. The first group is information pertaining to the iPhone’s memory. A pie chart of the iPhone’s RAM displays the Wired, Active, Inactive and Free number of megabytes combined with a display of Page Ins and Page Outs. You can also free up RAM by pressing the Free Memory button.

The second pane has a small graph of the disk usage on the iPhone and displays the space available.

The third pane contains the IP addresses on the Wi-Fi and Cellular network.

The forth pane contains the iPhone’s uptime, along with the past load averages for 1 minute, 5 minutes and 15 minutes.

Finally, the last pane contains the Unique Identifier and the Wi-Fi MAC Address along with three buttons “Email ID”, “Email Both” and “Email MAC”. These pieces of information are handy when registering the Wireless MAC address to a new network, or sending the iPhone’s UID to get an Ad-Hoc distribution.

While iStat organizes a great deal of information about your iPhone, it isn’t where the functionality ends. iStat can give you remote statistics on any Mac running OS X Tiger (or later) and connected to the internet. By simply downloading the iStat server and installing it on your computer you can start looking at statistics from computers thousands of miles on your iPhone or iPod touch.


The installation of the server is simple and can be found on Bjango’s website here. Once running, you simply enter a four digit number randomly generated on the server side into your iPhone, assuming all of your routing is in place. Once this is done you can now start viewing statistics of your Mac! The statistics are laid out in the same format as the stats for your iPhone, but depending on the age of your Mac, will most likely contain more information (such as the different network interfaces, battery or fan status and more).

iStat for the iPhone is an excellent application for monitoring both your iPhone and your Macs from on the go. Check out iStat in the App Store here, on sale for $1.99 (limited time only)! We would also like to thank Marc Edwards at Bjango for giving us the opportunity to review iStat.

Newer, Smaller iPod Shuffle

11 03 2009


New to the list of Apple’s recent product revisions is the now smaller $79.00 iPod Shuffle. They sport 4 GB storage in a 1.8″ x 0.7″ x 0.3″ housing weighing less than an ounce. It can play for about 10 hours from a full charge, and as always is compatible with Mac and PC through iTunes.

Apple quietly updated the iPod Shuffle today, closing the online store early in the morning and reopening it with the new iPod. The iPod Shuffle is much like the his older cousins, small, sleek, and uses a clip to hold on to whatever you want. The Shuffle comes only in two colors, silver and black aluminum, and the clip is made of shiny stainless steel.

The major feature Apple is pushing for this new iPod Shuffle is VoiceOver, which can tell you the song you are playing (without interrupting the song), recite playlists you have loaded onto it, and warn you when your battery is low. This is a great improvement over the old shuffle, where you were stuck with one playlist, and there was no way to find out what song you were listening to. However, the computerized voice may get on your nerves if you are sensitive to it.

Lastly, when you buy the shuffle, you are stuck with Apple’s earbuds. They have removed buttons from the actual device, and have placed them on the right side earphone cord. Although this is handy, if you don’t like Apple’s earbuds, there is nothing you can do about it until an adapter comes out, and that adapter will be a separate purchase. Not to mention the controls you will have to memorize a combination of controls just to use it, take a look:


Pros: VoiceOver, Smaller, Long Battery Life, Very Nice Look

Cons: Proprietary Headphones, unknown Adapter price-tag, VoiceOver voice can be irritating, only 2 bland colors (black and silver)

If you plan on buying an iPod, the Shuffle is the cheapest and does music like all the other iPods. You lose out on the screen and video that the 8GB $149.00 iPod Nano would give you, though if you only want the music in a small package, Apple has the answer in a fashionable package.

App Store Review: Enigmo

17 02 2009


Enigmo is a game with a simple concept – get the water/fire/oil into their respective containers. You get to use a variety of tools, like ramps, cannons, sponges, and springs to move the droplets around the level. The goal of the game is to fill up containers to their maximum of 40 drops, simultaneously,  to move on to the next level. What’s interesting is that you also have to deal with obstacles, like force-fields that you have to turn off by shooting some of your drops through a ring to shut the force field down.

There is a lot of content in this game. The game comes with 50 levels, and you can download user-generated content so you never run out of challenges. But you won’t fly too quickly through all of the original 50 levels, some are very difficult and require a lot time to figure out.


The biggest downfall of the game is that the difficulty curve isn’t gradual. At times you’ll be ready to delete the game  in frustration because it’s so hard, and you don’t want to deal with it anymore, but then the next level is a cakewalk.

For the $1.99 price tag, you could do a whole lot worse than Enigmo. The game gives you a lot of content for a small price, and when you feel like your brain needs some exercise it’s a great little game to play.