Keep in mind that up untill now games were downloadable only through Jailbreaking the device and were always free, sacrificing quality. After all, without the prospect of making money or gaining fame, programmers didn't really work that hard to make their games beautiful and perfect. However, App Store is now open and sadly (but not unexpectedly), there are only a few free games. Despite that fact, some of them are awesome and others are literally masterpieces.
This game will not impress you with its looks and doesn’t seem to be an application someone should shed sweat upon. But on the contrary, Cube Runner is extremely addictive. Its essence consists of controlling a triangular object, using the accelerometer with the goal being to evade cubes, which will block your way. The game is 3D, but those two shapes (triangle and cube) are the only ones you will see. However, you will still remain addicted, because of its simplicity and the incoming obstacles and increasing speed. At a certain moment you will get tired of it and stop playing, but then you will see your score is barely 300 and you will pick up the iPhone again with the lifetime goal to hit 1000. Cube Runner even supports the integration of other level packs so that when you get tired of evading random incoming cubes, you can download some man-made runway.
We’ve all played Arkanoid and we all know that breaking flying blocks with a ball can turn into a passion. In our quest for similar free games, we found out that the best looking one is actually free! Jirbo Breaks’ graphics are very impressive as both lightning effects and art. The backgrounds look great and the explosions and power-ups are pure eye candy.
Like any other Arkanoid clone, here you also have to break blocks using a steel ball and have a platform to bounce the ball off. A wonderful innovation in this game is the presence of a small button in the middle of the bottom screen, which detects the slightest movement and thus you can manipulate the platform with the least amount of effort and with full visibility. Unfortunately, the game is not bug-free and you will have to get used to the fact that the platform doesn’t always bounce the ball back, even though you might slide right below it. You’ll have to get used to the periodical glitch, because it seems Jirbo Break is not fully optimized to run on the iPhone.
Everyone else reviewed it, why shouldn’t we? First of all, we must note that the game is claimed to be a massive multiplayer online role playing game, but no matter how you look at it, it’s just a puzzle. All the noise that it is “the first iPhone MMO” is more of a marketing strategy to increase the interest of the hardcore gamers looking for another platform on which to compete with the rest. Unfortunately, Aurora Feint is not what it is claimed to be and even though it’s great in its own way, it has nothing to do with the word “Online”.
If we ignore those reproaches, Aurora Feint is actually pretty nice. It’s played like Diamonds, but instead, you will be arranging trios of cubes bearing the signs of the natural elements. Collecting three or more cubes on the same horizontal or vertical line, you win the respective resource (element), which you later on use to enhance your abilities. Aurora Feint even has its own world map, which is basically a menu divided in Blacksmith, Mines (The place you collect the elements and play the puzzle), Tower (You overview your progress here) and a few others, which unfortunately, just like the rest of the game, are overdressed and force you to think you are playing something complicated. For example, you level up by collecting resources, and then you play a bonus level in which you collect resources. When you collect enough resources, you’ll have to craft a weapon, which to help you collect resources faster, but in order to do that you have to play a mini game in which… you collect resources again.
But let’s not be rude, the game is entertaining, the leveling system makes it addictive, the music is beautiful and motivating, the art is equaled to none in any other iPhone game and as a whole, it deserves some praise. And even though it is not an MMO, you’ll still get the chance to form a “party” with some other player, creating the illusion that you’re actually online.
Here is another game that grabbed our attention. This one is a bit more innovative from the rest of the arcades. In Comet Lite, you take the role of a space cowboy! Using your finger, you will have to make laser lassos around meteorites and the beauty here is that the form of the lasso itself depends strictly on what you will draw. There is a time trial in which you must collect a certain amount of meteorites or you will fail the level. The comets in this free (demo) version vary in size and are either normal or made out of “dark matter”. The last ones are invisible to the radar. The game is truly addictive and if it didn’t have to end on level five, we would have played it a lot more. Unfortunately, in order to go on you will have to buy the full version from App Store for $3.99.
This is an interactive application which, we are sure, will appeal to the elderly iPhone users. TanZen is a very pleasant puzzle game where your goal is to arrange the geometrical pieces in the shape of something that has already been drawn on the ground. You can move every figure wherever you want, rotate it 360 degrees using two fingers or flip it around by double tapping.
The game is obsessive, mostly because the levels are not mercilessly hard and there are 100 of them. This gives you over 6-7 hours of gameplay and considering this is a free application, that’s a godsend!