MacMost Now 128: iPhone Games-Scrabble, Galcon, Aurora Feint

Gary Rosenzweig looks at three iPhone Game Apps available at the iTunes App Store. Scrabble is the official version of the classic board game. Galcon is a strategy game played like an arcade game. Aurora Feint is an interesting adventure and puzzle game. You can also play free iPhone games at MacMost.com.

Video Transcript
Hi, this is Gary with MacMost Now.
Today let's take a look at three games I like for the iPhone. So it's been less than two months since the release of the iPhone Apps store and there's already a ton of games for you to purchase and some for free. Let's take a look at three of them.
The first is a no brainer for me,it's Scrabble. It's an official version of Scrabble and I love this game. I love it as a computer game, I've owned versions for the PC, the Mac and even for the iPod. So let's take a look at the iPhone version of Scrabble.
So you've got various options, you can do a quick play or a custom play where you can set the difficulty with various options and you can even set it to play against a real opponent rather than a computer opponent.
When you do the normal version of the game you go ahead and you start and you get your tiles and then you get to go ahead and place them on the board. Now the board's pretty small on the iPhone so what it does is it zooms in as you're placing tiles. So for instance here we want to go ahead and place axe in the middle of the board, it will zoom in like that. Then it calculates your tally. It'll tell you if your word's invalid and then the computer will move and then it's your turn again.
You get to do all the normal stuff like trading letters and things like that and you get to watch your score here at the top of the screen. This game is very similar to the computer versions of Scrabble and it plays very well.
One of the complaints I've got is that the difficulties are too far apart. The normal level is too easy for me, and the hard level's impossible as the computer guesses words you've never even heard of before. So there needs to be more tiers in there. Besides that it's a pretty good game, not only for Scrabble players, but it'll help you improve your game. It will set you back the full ten dollars though, so it might just be for Scrabble lovers.
So next here's a game from an independent developer. It's good to see that independent developers are doing will with iPhone apps, just as well as the large publishers. This game is called Galcon and it's basically a strategic conquest type of game in a space setting. But it's more than that because it's played at an arcade pace. Let me show you.
So there's many different levels of game play and game variations. But the basic level is classic, it looks like this. You get a bunch of different planets. You're the green one over here and then there's the orange enemy over here. And what you do is when you start you send your ships to other planets by simply tapping and dragging. When you do that you take over the planet. The larger the planet, the quicker you're going to be able to produce ships and your goal of course is to eliminate the other guy completely. You can do this by sending your ships to his planet and taking it over. Once you've done it you've won.
So, Galcon is a great twist on a strategy game, played in real time. It's simple enough that it's quick and easy to play, but with the higher difficulty levels it can be quite challenging and there's plenty of game variation as well. It's also ten dollars from the iPhone Apps store.
Another game that's quite interesting by an independent developer is called Aurora Feint. Now this is kind of an adventure game, role playing game, but with a lot of puzzle game elements to it as well, and there's an online portion.
Let's take a look.
So, the main part of Aurora Feint includes this big map and from the map you can go to several different places. You can go to for instance, the mine and the mine has the main game in it, where you can actually go ahead and earn points by playing this simple block moving game. What you need to do here is basically move the blocks in such a way so that it lines up three in a row like so and you continue to go ahead and do this to earn points here and then you also play the same game to be able to put together skill sets for yourself.
It's a fairly complex game and I haven't gotten too much into it, there's a lot to see here. But once you're done with the basic mine, you can go right back to the map and you can also go ahead and look at other statistics about your character, that you've created in the game.
It's actually tough to explain this game in a short review, so you're gonna have to try it yourself. Now trying it yourself is easy because the game is completely free. Just choose it from the iPhone Apps store and download it and you don't have to pay a penny, and it looks like the developer has a lot more in store because this game is called "The Beginning", meaning that there are going to be more episodes and there's going to be much more of an online component, playing against other people. So look for a lot of great things from this developer. and try out Aurora Feint.
Of course, I should mention that you can also play more iPhone games by using the Safari Web Browser and plugging into MacMost.com/iPhone games.
Until next time, it's Gary Rosenweig with MacMost Now.

Comments: 4 Responses to “MacMost Now 128: iPhone Games-Scrabble, Galcon, Aurora Feint”

    Daniel
    9/3/08 @ 11:05 am

    I own a first generation iPhone, so due to limited space I don’t buy or download games much… I have two. Although I do like the look of “Labyrinth Light.” It looks quick and fun, something you can play waiting in a doctor’s office or at the DMV line.
    I use Tris for moments like that, a Tetris clone thats free and lets you play your iPod music while playing the game.

    Always good to see others views on Apps. I stick with the productivity, utilities and photography areas of the App store except for one thing; Ambiance! very good to help you relax or focus in noisy work place.

    9/4/08 @ 1:43 pm

    Hey – thanks for the review :)

    inav
    1/29/09 @ 3:38 am

    hey can some1 tell how to download games from dis site to my iphone 3g

    1/29/09 @ 7:03 am

    inav: Use the iPhone app store either on your iPhone or in the iTunes music store.

Comments Closed.