Infinity Blade leads iPad Games of the Week

Dec 12, 2010
Games

What a week to be an iPad owner – or dreaming of one as a holiday gift. App developers have outdone themselves in recent days, launching a set of top-shelf games that are sure to impress, inspire, and enthrall you through your holiday downtime and well into 2011. Infinity Blade ($5.99) Fans of hack and […]

What a week to be an iPad owner – or dreaming of one as a holiday gift. App developers have outdone themselves in recent days, launching a set of top-shelf games that are sure to impress, inspire, and enthrall you through your holiday downtime and well into 2011.

Infinity Blade ($5.99)

Fans of hack and slash sword-fighting games should run, not walk, to the App Store and get their hands on this instant iPad classic. Coming from the creative minds of Epic Games (and its Chair division), Infinity Blade is the first game running the full Unreal 3 engine on a mobile platform.

Infinity Blade is the best-looking game to date for the iPad, with realistic castle environments, epically detailed fighters, and even pixel-perfect sunbeams, cloud cover, and other scenery touches that put you right in the action. The overall game field is curiously small, however, bolting your character to a set of rails as he fights his way into a distant castle to avenge the death of his father. Again. And again. And again…

Infinity Blade is an excellent beginning, showing us the true power of the Unreal engine on Apple’s device. Future updates are well underway for this must-buy title, adding fresh enemies for us to vanquish, a full multiplayer environment, new equipment, plus an all-new “Dread Dungeon” level (yes, please!) that will present unparalleled challenges that go far beyond the God King in the form of Titan Guardians.

Rock Band Reloaded ($9.99)

Rock Band Reloaded hit the App Store a few days ago, and it successfully brings the familiar rock star-wannabe, candy-colored button mashing you’ve experienced on other consoles to your iPad.

The iPad’s touch screen makes holding and sustaining notes a breeze, with a little wiggle in your digits serving as the whammy bar to add extra points and grab extra Star Power during sustained white notes. As usual, your multi-star performances will earn you cash and fans, as well as unlock a seriously-deep set of new venues in which to perform.

The app also brings voice recognition for aspiring singers out there. This takes the entire experience to a whole new level — the original Rock Band app was sadly lacking this feature — so long as you’re in a quiet place with little background noise.

Plus, the game includes Bluetooth multiplayer, as well as same-device multiplayer which takes over both sides of your screen in landscape mode. If you’re not worn out by these kinds of games (yet) and are looking to get your rock on no matter where you may roam, Rock Band Reloaded is a perfect purchase this holiday season.

Time Geeks: Find All! HD ($1.99)

My nine-year-old is a huge fan of the Where’s Waldo? series of books. We’ve spent more nights than I can recall scouring jam-packed, oversized pages for Waldo and his friends, family, pets, and more.

The ’80s teenager in me immediately took a shine to Time Geeks: Find All! HD, which marries this familiar seek and find experience with pixel art graphics (think 8-bit) and a truly retro style that harkens back to a time when video games were enjoyed in mall arcades and graphics were blocky.

You and your kids will spend hours working your way through each level, challenging you to find people, animals, and objects and then selecting them so they instantly return to their proper locations. There’s six game modes to explore (history, challenges, arcade, relax, mini-games, and editor), along with 140 challenges to master.

Best of all, you can take on the role of level maker to drag, drop, and rearrange items on a level of your very own. When you’re done with your masterpiece, you can easily share it with your friends and family on Facebook.

Time Geeks is the rare app that will engage multiple generations of gamers on your iDevice, and is my kid-friendly pick of the week.

Eenies at War (FREE)

For years, kids of all ages (hint!) have been blasting their way through hostile environments, arming cute worms with all manner of rifles, grenades, missiles, and other ordinance, in order to take out baddies (and each other.)

Titles like Worms and Scorched Earth have successfully addicted at least two generations of gamers on this turn-based, aim-and-fire game play mechanic. Now there’s Eenies at War, and it’s time to hook the iPad generation on this strangely addictive style of gaming.

This time around, everything is customizable. Equip and fully arm mobiles and avatars, switch your strategy based on the kinds of enemies you’re facing, and grab new equipment along the way. Each round (12 in all in the single campaign) grants you experience points, and you can upgrade yourself to level 64 as you progress. With more than 2,000 weapon combinations, you’ll find all manner of creative ways to make the bad guys go SPLAT.

The secret sauce of this Worms-clone is massively multiplayer battles. Join with up to seven opponents to blast your way across multiple battlefields. But wait your turn, please. This is turn-based Worms-style combat, remember?

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Tim McLain

Tim McLain is a freelance writer and an online marketing manager, helping serious researchers and students find and make use of the best online content found on the deep Web. His passion for all things computers/tech started when he was a teenager, working with his twin brother to set up a C64 BBS in their bedroom.

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