New iPhone apps worth downloading: Swell Radio, Limbo, Cling Thing

Jul 5, 2013

Hit the weekend with a few great apps worth downloading that can keep you busy and keep you informed. Up first is Swell Radio, an app that acts like Pandora, but brings you talk radio shows instead of music. Following that is Limbo, the award-winning and critically acclaimed puzzle-platformer previously on Xbox 360 and PC. Limbo tells the dark story of a boy lost in Limbo as he searches for his sister (and gets killed a lot). Finally, Cling Thing is a casual physics puzzler in which you play a creature that uses its tentacles to stick to walls and move through each of the game’s many stages.

Swell Radio (Free)

What’s it about? Stream talk radio shows from radio stations such as NPR and ABC, and content such as TED Talks, straight to your device with Swell Radio.

What’s cool? Swell Radio is a lot like other radio apps, bringing lots of different audio content streamed to your device over the Internet. The difference is that Swell has a specific focus: talk radio. That means it brings things like news content from stations like the BBC, ABC, CBC and CBS, NPR radio shows such as “This American Life,” and even TED Talks on various topics. You can switch between broad categories like News and Technology to find the content you’re interested in, and the app can scan your Twitter feed to seed content based on who you follow.

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Who’s it for? Fans of news and talk radio should find lots to enjoy in Swell Radio.

What’s it like? Grab BBC News and NPR News for more talk radio programming.


Limbo ($4.99)

What’s it about? Side-scrolling puzzle-platformer Limbo is a dark experience of a boy trying to find his lost sister and hoping not to die along the way.

What’s cool? Previously only available on Xbox 360 and PC, Limbo is an award-winning puzzle-platformer title in which a players control a boy searching through a strange, nightmare-like world for his missing sister. The game has players navigating dangers such as brain-controlling slugs, reversed gravity, massive flooding and giant spiders, and features a dark tone and desolate, spooky soundtrack. If you’ve heard of Limbo but haven’t tried it, you really ought to.

Who’s it for? Anyone who likes platformers, puzzles, or sharply made games with great art should check out Limbo.

What’s it like? Contre Jour and Trundle have similar art styles and mechanics, although they’re not as dark as Limbo.

Cling Thing ($0.99)

What’s it about? Navigate puzzle-like levels as quickly as possible by firing off tentacles and sticking to walls in Cling Thing.

What’s cool? Players in Cling Thing work through sticky, weird levels by sticking to different walls along the way. You’ll have to stick to walls because, as a weird amoeba-like creature in Cling Thing, you don’t have any limbs. Your only means of movement is to fire off a tentacle that can stick to certain surfaces, and use it to fling yourself forward. Along the way through Cling Thing’s 96 different levels, your goal is to snag a stars and to try to get to the end of each level as quickly as possible, and the more efficiently you can pass through each stage, the better your scores you’ll earn.

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Who’s it for? If you like physics puzzlers and casual arcade games, check out Cling Thing.

What’s it like? Check out Tentacles: Enter the Dolphin, which has some similar mechanics and level design.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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