iOS Board Games

Among the best things in life is playing printed games in person with family and close friends. When those are not convenient we like iOS Board Games. News, reviews, previews, and opinions about board gaming on iPhones, iPads, iPods and even Android devices. (iPhone board games, iPad board games, iPod board games, Android board games)

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First Look: Baseball Highlights 2045

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Baseball Highlights 2045
Availability: iOS (iPad Only), Android (Tablets Only)
Price: $5.99
App Store Links: iTunes, Google Play


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Tue Feb 2, 2016 5:00 pm
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First Look: Brass

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Brass
Availability: iOS
Price: $6.99
App Store Links: iTunes, Google Play


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Fri Nov 20, 2015 6:00 pm
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First Look: Le Havre: The Inland Port

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Le Havre: The Inland Port
Availability: iOS
Price: $4.99
App Store Links: iTunes, Google Play


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Fri Nov 20, 2015 3:26 am
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First Look - Dice Monsters

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Dice Monsters
Availability: iOS
Price: Free (with IAP)
App Store Links: iTunes


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Mon Nov 9, 2015 2:08 pm
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First Look: Camel Up

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Camel Up
Availability: iOS Universal, Android
Price: $4.99
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play


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Thu Oct 8, 2015 5:34 pm
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First Look: Sheriff of Nottingham Companion App

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Sheriff of Nottingham Companion App
Availability: iOS Universal, Android
Price: Free
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play


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Thu Oct 1, 2015 5:00 pm
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First Look: Magic Duels

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Magic Duels
Availability: iOS Universal, Console, PC
Price: Free (with IAP)
App Store Links: App Store


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Tue Sep 15, 2015 2:30 pm
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Review Roundup: Apples to Apples, You Must Build a Boat

Brad Cummings
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Apples to Apples
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: Free
App Store Links: App Store

While cloned endlessly on mobile, Apples to Apples was released officially last week. While we saw it digitally before on Xbox 360, this appears to be a whole new attempt for mobile.

Apples to Apples is a simple card game of funny comparisons. You have descriptive word and you match it with one of the cards in your hand, generally with a funny result. The key of this game is making people laugh and reading your opponents. These are two major elements missing from this digital version. You can communicate, but only by text, and the game moves so quickly that you don’t often have a lot of opportunities to do this. In terms of reading your opponents, games only last one round of each player being the judge, so it is hard to really learn what your opponents like. All in all, these are weaknesses you will find in almost any digital card game.

So while we can debate the validity of Apples to Apples on a tablet, I can tell you that the core gameplay is sound. The interface to play and select cards is very straightforward and equal to what you would expect. The only system is easy to use and there always seem to many active games (at least in this launch period). Games are on pretty tight timers so you will always be clipping along. If this core gameplay were taken in isolation, I would highly recommend this game if you could wrap your head around playing without table talk.

Sadly, Apples to Apples is packaged in a confusing free to play framework. There are two currencies: gold and silver. Gold is used to play games and can be purchased or earned by leveling up. Silver is earned by playing and is used to buy card packs and vanity items. Because cards must be purchased, you’ll find that you will see the same red cards over and over. It is also annoying to have your amount play artificially limited by your gold. Honestly, it feels like the way F2P was done back in 2012: ham-fisted and clumsy.

Apples to Apples is one I think you can avoid. While the core is great, the rest of this apple is rotten (I am so sorry).



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      43 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





You Must Build A Boat
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: $2.99
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play

10000000 was a surprise hit when it was released. It took puzzle gameplay and sprinkled it with same indie dungeon crawling charm. The long awaited sequel You Must Build a Boat is now available. Does it live up to its predecessor?

It is tough to follow an act like 10000000, which was a slow burn cult hit. You Must Build a Boat follows the same match three gameplay while expanding it in almost every way possible. There are new monsters, new dungeons, new blocks to break, and more. YMBAB feels like a fleshed out version of its predecessor. It takes what you love and ads new locations, more characters, and smoother gameplay.

The titular boat is also a fantastic addition. As you go through your adventure it will become full of life. It is a place you want to come back to. It adds buckets of charm and a fair touch of humor. It is an odd concept, but fits right in with the quirky nature of the game.

It is hard to say a lot about this. If you have played 10000000 this is no brainer. If you’ve have yet to, You Must Build a Boat is the definitive experience. I highly recommend picking this up today.



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Poll created by thequietpunk
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Tue Jun 9, 2015 12:01 am
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Review Roundup: Knights of Pen and Paper 2, EarthCore: Shattered Elements

Brad Cummings
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Knights of Pen and Paper 2
Availability: iOS Universal, Android
Price: $4.99
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play

As you may recall, the first Knights of Pen and Paper grabbed me with its style but failed to deliver in the long term. It was with cautious optimism that I approached this sequel. Have they managed to overcome the weaknesses of the initial release?

In Knights of Pen and Paper 2 you take on the role of both a DM and a group of players in a tabletop RPG. The game features a series of quests that you can follow as well as endless numbers of battles you set up. You can have up to 5 heroes each with their own combination of class, race, and persona. My strongest character right now is a Cheerleader Human Warrior for example. The game almost entirely deals in the American stereotypes from the 80s and 90s. Like any RPG, you can travel from location to location, visit shops, explore dungeons, etc. While you can move anywhere you like at anytime, you will be generally focused along the games set story route.

You will generally use your DM freedom for grinding. The game has a pretty steep curve so you will find yourself murdering wave after wave of easy mobs to level up. This was a weakness of the game before and is definitely carried over. Battles (even on low levels) can feel very back and forth and so even grinding must be watched closely. There is not real option to just “mash A” so to speak.

In moderation the combat is pretty enjoyable. Each character class has a wide variety of skills and can be used in combination for great results. They really added some tactical choice and award players who think a few moves ahead. Of course, boss type characters are still a slog, but I am really enjoying the combat this time around.

The game is quite long you will find a lot to do. The story is nothing to write home about and the humor is a little off this time. That being said, I do find myself coming back from time to time to continue my adventure. It must just be the pace of game that fits of neurosis right now.

Knights of Pen and Paper 2 is a bit of a disappointment. A lot of the issues it had before still exist and the experience feels a little shallower overall this tie around. That being said, if you liked the first one, you will find a nice second helping here. The art is still charming and it is a charming homage to tabletop RPGs.



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How do you rate Knights of Pen and Paper 2?
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      45 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





EarthCore: Shattered Elements
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: Free
App Store Links: App Store

The app store is full of “card games” that are little more than slot machines disguised with gameplay elements. I have to admit, when I first heard about EarthCore, this was my assumption. I am happy to report that I was wrong. Earthier: Shattered Elements is a fully fleshed out digital card game that does several new things while appealing to existing sensibilities.

In EarthCore, your goal is to lower your opponents health to zero. This is done through a series of rounds in which you will each play a card to each of the three lanes on the board. After all cards are played, the cards battle winning based on their element. Earth beats Water which beats Fire which beats Earth. This simple Rock, Paper, Scissors mechanic is compounded with a few wrinkles. For example there is actually a fourth element called Dust that always loses, but can be evoked at certain times. many cards have abilities that either activate automatically or must by used by the player. These abilities really change the course of battle and are key to success. You are also looking ahead for the write combo to lead your opponent into a trap. Since each card you lay down is visible immediately, you have to figure out how to respond to their eventual counter.

Each card in the game has a risk value. This value is the amount of damage you will take if that card loses the battle. So while you can play strong cards, you also need ensure you will win or they will back fire on you. This is by the most unique element of the game and turns it into a really enjoyable push your luck affair.

This is a collectible card game, so a lot of your success will come from deck building. You will unlock cards by playing and can also buy packs through in game currency. Admittedly, the pricing structure is not extremely clear. You’ve got two currencies, one you pay for and one you earn, and they can be used in different ways. Decks are limited to 25 cards and you typically want to have a mix of all three elements. Cards come in different rarities and there is a limit of three copies of a card in a deck.

The game features a lengthy campaign that features some challenging battles and will net you a bunch of free cards. There is also a pretty robust online system with ranked play and different leagues. I am still in the lowly bronze league, but so far feel like things are pretty evenly matched.While it will take more time for it to mature, online play is enjoyable right now.

The game is certainly free to play but I have enjoyed my time so far with no spend. There is a lot of content upfront for you to get a good feeling for the game before dropping a dime. Because of the way the online leagues are split, you should be able to find someone at your spend level to play against, and stronger cards will not always win.

I’ve enjoyed EarthCore much more than I predicted I would. While it is hard to dethrone Hearthstone, this game is a nice alternative with a different play style and focus. I highly recommend it.



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Poll created by thequietpunk
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Mon May 25, 2015 1:46 pm
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Review Roundup: Legends of Grimrock and SpaceCOM

Brad Cummings
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Legends of Grimrock
Availability: iPad
Price: $4.99
App Store Links: App Store

When I first played Legends of Grimrock on PC, I was fascinated by they way it captured dungeon crawling. Forced into a locked first-person perspective, you are both limited and immersed. There were hours and hours of dungeon exploration and puzzling to encounter. Now on iPad, Legends of Grimrock is simultaneously open to a new audience and right at home on a great platform.

Legends of Grimrock is of the old school style of RPGs. You control a party of four adventures in a fixed perspective. You can always move, map permitting, in the the four cardinal directions as well as rotate your facing. Most of your time in the dungeon you will be moving around and exploring. Items and secrets are scattered throughout each level, so you have to move slow and be meticulous if you want to catch everything. This game throws you your characters in a pretty bare state, so each peace of loot feels like a triumph.

Combat is real-time to a point. Each character can attack, but said attack has a set cool-down based on the weapon. Monsters can attack you from any side and it is up to you to control your facing and positioning. Kiting enemies and similar tactics are essential to success. Character control is fairly deep with an extensive inventory system and skill trees.

For the most part, Legends of Grimrock feels right at home on iPad. The controls have been rethought in a clever way to fit on the device and the graphics look great. Maybe the only weakness with the iPad controls is when you need to move quickly in combat. It is possible, but I find myself pressing the wrong direction at times. This of course is more a weakness of virtual controls in general.

Legends of Grimrock much like FTL is, dare I say, ideally played on iPad. The platform does not lose any of the graphic fidelity but instead offers convenient access to the hours of fun found in this game. The touch controls add a new element to the exploration and combat is generally as straightforward as usual. If you have yet to explore Grimrock, I highly recommend picking it up. If you’ve delved before, it may very well be worth a return trip.



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How do you rate Legends of Grimrock?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      77 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





SpaceCOM
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: $2.99
App Store Links: App Store

In the far reaches of space, two factions vie for control of systems and resources. Published by the studio behind Anomaly, SpaceCOM is a semi-RTS game the has you conquering and controlling planets in deep space. Imagine it as a more thinky Planets Under Attack.

In SpaceCOM your goal is to defeat your opponent by conquering planets, raising fleets, and controlling key footholds. The game centers around three types of ships. One type is used for space combat against other fleets, another for conquering planets, and another for razing planets. The tradeoffs of each are central to the game. Do you focus on conquering and holding a planets or do you just bombard it and force your opponent to lose the resource? You have limited number of shipyards and travel takes time, so you really need to plan your strategies in advance.

Planets in the game often have strategic resources such as income, repair yards and more. The value of controlling a system has to be weighed against your gain and how difficult it will be to hold. Combat occurs when opposing fleets meet in a system. It is automatic with a superior force generally succeeding. Each unit can also gain seniority which gives it an edge in combat. The goal is generally to conquer your opponent’s home world and claim victory.

While realtime, the game is not twitch based. Ships take several seconds to move from system to system, so you are always trying to plan a step ahead. Apart from that, there are several choices in strategy. Which planet do you take next? What sort of fleet should you focus on? Many questions.

The game features several missions which can be seen as a tutorial, along with online and local play. I have not dived into only play yet, but the local Skirmish mode works well against AI. As you would expect from this studio, SpaceCOM looks great. The UI is highly polished and the iconography is clear. You’ll be able to jump right in and start your space empire.

SpaceCOM is a polished take on the mobile RTS. It has depth in the right places and also streamlined where it needs to be. While the pace may not be for everyone, it is definitely worth checking out.



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How do you rate SpaceCOM?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      22 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk
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24 Comments
Tue May 12, 2015 3:00 pm
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