Archive for Game of the Week

TextTwist 2 released on Windows Phone, marks 100th XBL-enabled game

TextTwist 2 Banner TextTwist 2 released on Windows Phone, marks 100th XBL enabled game

Test your knowledge of the English language with TextTwist 2. The game presents players with a series of letters which are used to find all possible permutations greater than three characters long. Are you smart enough to find every single one? Playing all of the letters at once rewards players with the option of skipping to the next level. TextTwist 2 isn’t new to the world of smartphone gaming, but it’s certainly a lot of fun.

Try your skills in five challenging game modes. Play the original Timed and Untimed modes or take it to the next level with three other exciting modes: Letter Mania, Lightning, and Daily Word. In Letter Mania, fill in the whole anagram grid before time runs out. Each letter used is replaced by another. In Lightning, unscramble all five words as quickly as possible. Finally, with Daily Word, challenge yourself once a day to find the longest word available.

The release of TextTwist 2 also marks the 100th Xbox LIVE-enabled title on Windows Phone. The Marketplace has many, many more standard games, but Xbox LIVE generally indicate a higher quality bar. They also are the only games to include support for Xbox LIVE achievements and leaderboards.

TextTwist 2 TextTwist 2 released on Windows Phone, marks 100th XBL enabled gameTextTwist 2
Developer: GameHouse Live
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements

[Xbox | Karl Stricker]

Bug Village released on Windows Phone

Bug Village Banner Bug Village released on Windows Phone

Windows Phone hit another milestone this week, thanks to the release of the first freemium game on Microsoft’s smartphone OS. Developed by Glu Mobile, Bug Village places players in control of ant and bee colonies. What makes this title notable, however, is that it is completely free to download and play. Those that want to progress through the game faster are given the option of paying for premium DLC in the form of coins and acorns or unlocking promotional codes.

This is BUG VILLAGE, a tiny town where you build and nurture a colony of ACTIVE ANTS and BUSY BEES!  Construct homes to attract PLAYFUL BUGS and direct them to the garden, where they can gather resources to expand your village.  Feed your bugs to keep them energized and healthy.  Add cute decorations and flowers to make the colony BUZZ WITH EXCITEMENT!  Small is beautiful in BUG VILLAGE!

Thankfully, premium DLC isn’t required to earn any of the achievements. So what are you waiting for? Download this fun, free game right away.

Bug Village Bug Village released on Windows PhoneBug Village
Developer: Glu Mobile
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne) released on Windows Phone

Z0MB1ES 560x336 Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne) released on Windows Phone

The hit twin-stick zombie shooter is now available on Windows Phone. Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne) [ed. Yes, that's the actual name] contains a collection of three games: the hit Xbox LIVE Indie Game I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1, Time Viking, and ENDL3SS Z0MB1ES. The title also includes “Mega Games Creator 2000″ and original music, including the popular Z0MB1ES theme.

Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne) is a themed twin-stick shooter collection headlined by I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES 1N IT!!!1, the solidly executed and utterly self-aware celebration of gaming culture through an epic musical masterpiece. Z0MB1ES does its best to span both musical and gaming genres in a streamlined series of choreographed music video gameplay mashups. Paired with an exclusive music-driven psychedelic shooter, Time Viking, as well as the ENDL3SS Z0MB1ES game mode, Z0MB1ES is infectious fun.

I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1 was originally released as a user-created game on Xbox LIVE’s Indie Games Marketplace. It quickly rose to fame, becoming both the highest-rated and second bestselling title of all time.

Z0MB1ES on teh ph0ne Z0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne) released on Windows PhoneZ0MB1ES (on teh ph0ne)
Developer: Ska Studios
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


Spider Jack released on Windows Phone

Spider Jack Banner Spider Jack released on Windows Phone

Microsoft is closing out 2011 with Spider Jack, the latest Xbox LIVE-enabled title to hit Windows Phone. The game starts out simply, but quickly escalates in difficulty. Players are tasked with swinging Jack around anchor points in order to collect flies and stars. Surprisingly, the real challenge is reaching the spider web–which serves as each level’s end point–without Jack falling to his death.

You don’t know Jack… yet. But you will! Say hello to Spider Jack, an adorable arachnid with an appetite that’s hard to satisfy. Capture all of the flies in a variety of environments – from an abandoned barn to a buzzing laboratory – and help Jack get his fill!

Spider Jack contains 75 levels spread across the barn, bathroom, and laboratory. The 25 “Oval Office” levels added to the iOS version over the summer are nowhere to be found, but the game is still enjoyable despite this glaring omission. In fact, the missing levels could be easily added in a future update. Those in need of a mobile game while they’re on vacation might want to download the free trial.

Spider Jack Spider Jack released on Windows PhoneSpider Jack
Developer: Chillingo
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


MiniSquadron released on Windows Phone

MiniSquadron Banner MiniSquadron released on Windows Phone

Update: It appears the developer is aware of the control bug and is working on a fix. In the meantime, just restart your device to fix the problem.

MiniSquadron, the latest Xbox LIVE-enabled new release on Windows Phone, is a game we wanted to like. It has an interesting art style and it is the first side-scrolling acrobatic air combat game on Windows Phone. Unfortunately, a critical issue keeps it from being playable, let alone fun.

The flying controls refused to function on our Samsung Focus, breaking the game and making it impossible to play. The game plays just fine on the LG Quantum, but which other devices it will work on is currently up in the air, so to speak. We sincerely hope that Supermono Studios is able to resolve this issue with a quick update. But in the meantime, make sure to download the trial before you buy.

MiniSquadron is a frantic shooter involving lots of little planes all vying for supremacy of the skies! Perform loop-the-loops, Immelmann turns and other daring feats of aeronautical acrobatics with a super fluid control system. Experience the joy of freedom in the air!

MiniSquadron MiniSquadron released on Windows PhoneMiniSquadron
Developer: Supermono Studios
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


Breeze, Battlewagon, and Doodle God released on Windows Phone

Doodle God Banner Breeze, Battlewagon, and Doodle God released on Windows Phone

Talk about app-happy. In addition to the flood of new app releases, Microsoft has released not one, not two, but three brand-new Xbox LIVE-enabled games this week!

Breeze is a free ad-supported title in the vein of Shuffle Party, Minesweeper, and Sudoku, and includes 50 gamerscore. Navigate your flower through the air with either touch or tilt in your quest to collect Sunshine. Battlewagon and Doodle God, meanwhile, are premium games. The former tasks you with destroying four evil Barons with a massive battlewagon, while the latter encourages you to combine elements to create worlds. Doodle God, a strangely addicting game, also includes exclusive episodes and concepts.

Breeze puts you in control of the wind as you gently blow a flower towards the goal. Master both tilt and touch controls to guide the flower across 60 seasonal themed levels while listening to Breeze’s smooth, relaxing soundtrack. Add to your Xbox LIVE account’s gamerscore by earning achievements. Breeze is light entertainment for all ages.

Breeze Breeze, Battlewagon, and Doodle God released on Windows PhoneBreeze
Publisher: Microsoft Studios
Price: FREE
Purchase | More Info | Achievements

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Hasta La Muerte released on Windows Phone

Hasta La Muerte Banner Hasta La Muerte released on Windows Phone

This week’s Xbox LIVE new release on Windows Phone, Hasta La Muerte, is something you won’t find on any other platform. Not just because it is a Windows Phone exclusive, but because it has a unique art style. The French developer seems to have been vaguely influenced by games like Doodle JumpParachute Panic, and Max & the Magic Marker, but it has its own personality.

Sometimes the living die in large number without explanation. You are an emissary of death. Your mission is to free the souls of the living whose time has come. Hasta La Muerte is a unique game in which the player acts as the Death itself and must seize the soul of those who are ready to leave our world. In case of failure, the human souls shall turn into lost and cursed soul and shall try to send the emissary back in its world.

Hasta La Muerte, which translated into English means “Until Death,” is controlled by tipping the device forward, backward, left, and right. Even the menu is navigated in this fashion, so it can take a bit of getting used to. The game play itself is fairly straightforward, requiring the player to navigate the Death around the map and “run over” eligible souls. Run into those that aren’t ready to be taken and you’ll lose a life. Play through more than 30 levels in a quest to defeat the Scientist and his Machines.

Hasta La Muerte Hasta La Muerte released on Windows PhoneHasta La Muerte
Developer: Pohlm Studios
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


Ghostscape and Shuffle Party released on Windows Phone

Ghostscape Banner Ghostscape and Shuffle Party released on Windows Phone

Windows Phone gamers get not one, but two games this week: Ghostscape and Shuffle Party. The first is a somewhat spooky ghost-hunting game. It’s a decent title, but it’s nothing special. At least the achievements are relatively easy to collect.

The real treat, however, is Shuffle Party. It’s a fun shuffleboard game that is–best of all–absolutely free. In fact, it’s only the fourth free Xbox LIVE-enabled game to be released on Windows Phone to date (provided, of course, that you don’t count titles like Halo Waypoint, Avatar Gadgets, etc.). It was preceded by Flowers, a Windows Phone launch title, as well as Minesweeper and Sudoku. Shuffle Party, like the latter two games, is ad-supported by Bing and only includes a total of 50 Gamerscore.

Shuffle Party brings the classic table game to Windows Phone with a twist. Knock down spares and strikes in Bowling Mode with easy to use touch controls. Perfect your skill shot in a series of puzzles in the exciting new Challenge Mode! Earn cash for your high scores to spend on custom pucks, pins and tables. Play traditional shuffleboard solo or get your friends in on the action with pass and play multiplayer. Your Avatar can even join the fun as you unlock Achievements for your Xbox LIVE account. Shuffle Party will bowl you over.

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Farm Frenzy 2 released on Windows Phone

Farm Frenzy 2 Banner Farm Frenzy 2 released on Windows Phone

The string of sequels continue with the release of Farm Frenzy 2 on Windows Phone. It’s almost like a mobile version of Farmville, minus the social element and Zynga’s touch. Younger children are sure to love Farm Frenzy 2, but it can be enjoyed by all ages, as evdienced by the positive–if small–ratings so far.

The fun never stops as you grow grass, feed chickens, collect eggs and take your produce to market. From there, you’ll spend the money you earn on additional buildings that produce exciting new products, including delicious steaks, tasty cakes and quaint down home apparel. You’ve got to stay on your sun-kissed toes, though, to keep the bears from tearing up your farm.

The only downside is that the game does not yet support Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” features like fast app switching. Hopefully, the developer will rectify this problem in the near future.

Farm Frenzy 2 Farm Frenzy 2 released on Windows PhoneFarm Frenzy 2
Developer: Alawar Entertainment
Price: $2.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements


Let’s Golf 2 released on Windows Phone

Lets Golf 2 Banner Lets Golf 2 released on Windows Phone

If RTS-like shooters aren’t your thing, then maybe a good round of golf will keep you satisfied. Let’s Golf 2 is the latest Xbox LIVE-enabled game to hit Windows Phone, finally giving gamers the ability to hit a few rounds on the go. Let’s Golf 2 features eight different characters–each with their own special ability–and a customization system for gear and clothing. The gameplay itself takes place throughout six exotic courses totaling 108 holes.

Looking for a faster, more colorful and fun golf experience? Then this newest edition of the popular Let’s Golf series is just the thing you need for the most exciting golf adventure you’ll ever find!

Let’s Golf 2 is also a massive game, weighing in at a whopping 186MB. That’s fine for most platforms, but it can be a bit large when most Windows Phone gamers only have access to 8GB or 16GB of internal storage. It’s also a bit pricey. Microsoft has managed to keep most of the recent releases in the $2.99 range, which we’re most certainly grateful for. In fact, 11 of the last 13 games were at the $2.99 price point, while the remaining two are available for free. The last two games to go for $4.99 were Sally’s Salon: Luxury Edition and excellent title Tentacles.

Lets Golf 2 Lets Golf 2 released on Windows PhoneLet’s Golf 2
Developer: Gameloft
Price: $4.99 (free trial available)
Purchase | More Info | Achievements