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iOS Board Games

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The Week In Review: NyxQuest, Hippos and Crocs, Thunderstone Facebook, and a little more...

Brad Cummings
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Connecticut
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The Week In Review


iOS



Here are some highlights and comments on some apps I have been playing this week, spoiler alert...it has been a light week:

iOS Platformers
Platformers are one of the genres that I feel do not work very well on iOS. Virtual controls often leave so many opportunities for failure that it is hard to perform the precise movements needed for this type of game. However, occasionally it is possible to get it right.

Paper Monsters is a recent platformer from Crescent Moon games. It has a cute arts style and theme that it carries throughout. It also gets through the usual control problems by using a virtual joystick and dividing the action areas to either side of the screen. This one was actually quite fun to play through and I was impressed by how complete of an experience it was. You can check it out here.

NyxQuest is a beautiful iOS platformer that was originally a WiiWare game. It is not a new title but certainly one to check out if you are an iPad user. NyxQuest does not have spot on controls but the platforming is more mild and the movement is floaty, so the controls are easier to forgive. Nyx Quest is about the experience and the atmosphere, similar to the recent Journey. I would recommend this to anyone looking for a light platformer. You can check it out here.


Hippos and Crocs
A few months ago, during a busy holiday season, Nestor games told me about their latest app Hippos and Crocs. I apologize for not mentioning it sooner, but I saw again the other day and decided to put it here. Hippos and Crocs is a abstract game where players are either hippo pieces or croc pieces, which are different shapes. Players are trying to place their pieces and prevent their opponent from placing pieces. The first person to be unable to place a piece loses. It is a fun little game and at $0.99 it is one that you really should check out. It even has online multiplayer. For me, I am still getting trounced by the AI. You can check it out here.

Draw Something Pics of the Week
I received some really great drawings from BGG User deadsqwirl this week. If you want to share your drawing please submit your drawings to iosboardgames@gmail.com, with your BGG username, and you may see them show up here.


Other



Thunderstone for Facebook
Thunderstone in Facebook is an excellent implementation by Zabu games. Facebook games have something of a taboo among gamers (as does iOS), but in some cases Facebook can just be the platform for delivering great content. Thunderstone on Facebook may not have the easiest interface, but it works well enough with a little experience. The single player campaign is fun and it is usually easy to find an online opponent. This will definitely be more played by me on iOS, but it is great to have an electronic version of this game to enjoy. You can check it out here.

Other



Castellan
Castellan by Steve Jackson games is a two player game where players compete to complete enclosed sections of a castle. It shares similarities to the dot game you may have played as a child. At PAX East I was lucky enough to get an early version of this game. It is quite fun and very tactile. Each turn you play cards to obtain building materials (walls and towers) for the castle. The key is to know when to spend your cards, as you only draw one per turn but may play as many as you like on a turn. It is a fun back and forth game that plays fairly quickly. That said, I am terrible at it. Seeing the castle fill the table gives the game a fun toy factor and should appeal to older children. Check this one out when it releases later in the year. You can read more about it here.

Thought of the Week



Many games on the market, videos games and sometimes board games, tend to objectify women (arguably they objective men too, just in a different way). Some recent examples for me include the "16 year old" from Hero Mages and Sharla, a character form Xenoblade Chronicles. Most pieces of armor worn by Sharla in the game are revealing and, sometimes, down right ridiculous. One recent rare drop is simply a bikini top. Sill, right?

So for this week, can you think of any situations where men or women are objectified in a game in a ridiculous, exploitative manner? Is this right or wrong, is there a line or perhaps a line based on the intended audience?
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