Fresh iPhone Apps for June 3: CountCon, ONE Campaign, Velocispider, Feed Me Oil

Jun 3, 2011
Games

Next week is a big one. Monday sees the beginning of Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, and Tuesday is the beginning of the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles. So while you’re killing time waiting for all the latest news out of those two massive yearly events, use our leading fresh iPhone app, CountCon, […]

Next week is a big one. Monday sees the beginning of Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, and Tuesday is the beginning of the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles. So while you’re killing time waiting for all the latest news out of those two massive yearly events, use our leading fresh iPhone app, CountCon, an app that drops countdowns on your iPhone’s home screen, so you always have a handy timer. Following that is ONE Campaign, an app that helps organize political activism, and a couple of casual games to help whittle away the hours before Steve Jobs speaks. Velocispider is a lot like Space Invaders, except it has a cyborg dinosaur-arachnid, and Feed Me Oil has you positioning objects around the screen to divert oil from a pipe into the mouths of monsters.

CountCon (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

Setting timers is CountCon’s bag. The app uses a combination of number notifications and push notifications to let you know how much time is left before something happens, without you having to open up your iOS device to double-check. Pop it open and all you have to do is set how much time is left until a specific event, and CountCon will send you a notification when it’s time for that thing, e.g. letting you know when the dryer is done cycling or the burgers need flipping.

Set CountCon on your front screen of apps and you can get information about the countdown even faster. Once you’ve set a timer, CountCon will display a number indicating time right on its icon. It’s the same notification system that the App Store button uses to tell you when you have apps that can be downloaded: a little red balloon with a number in it. Only with CountCon, that number represents whatever unit of time you used to fill in your latest timer.

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ONE Campaign (iPhone, iPad) Free

Co-created by U2 frontman Bono, ONE Campaign is a non-partisan organization that helps people lobby for political change. Pop open the app and you’ll see numerous programs that need help through activism. Click one and you’ll get video, text and audio that explains the plight and what ONE would like you to do to help, running down the details of the issue and why it is important.

Find a cause you believe in and want to help out with, and ONE provides you with the means to do so. Is a campaign’s chosen method of raising awareness calling the White House? Click along within the app and you’ll be set up with the number. If it’s an online petition, ONE brings you to it. You can also integrate social networking accounts like Facebook to spread the word for the need for activism to friends.

Velocispider (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

As the title suggests, Velocispider is part velociraptor, part spider. He’s a robotic defender of his nest of eggs, which some unnamed evil guy wants to poach for breakfast. In order to do that, the unnamed evil guy sends scores of spaceships and other horrors to steal the eggs, and it’s up to Velocispider to fight them off using his laser cannons.

The game uses tilt controls to help you control Velocispider as you direct him back and forth across the screen, taking out enemies and dodging their incoming fire. It also includes Game Center support, so you can compare your scores and achievements with other players.

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Feed Me Oil (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

Each of Feed Me Oil’s puzzles starts out simply: there’s a big, weird-shaped creature on each screen, and a pipe that spews oil when you touch it. Your job is to position objects around each level that directs the oil into the creature’s mouth. Objects can be as simple as a platform you can set on an angle, or more complex, like water wheels that spin as they fill with fluid or fans that levitate oil through the air.

Feed Me Oil gets more complex as time goes on, and you’re scored by how few hints you use on each puzzle, as well as how few objects you use to complete your goal and how quickly you move. It comes with support from Game Center and Crystal to integrate in players’ friends lists and provide leaderboards.

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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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