iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • This might come as a shock to you, but I have a few board games stowed away in my basement that I have yet to play. Actually, it might be a few dozen. Yep, brand new games, still in shrink wrap, just waiting for someone to come and play with them. My basement is basically the Island of Misfit Toys, but without that creepy Charlie-in-the-box. One of the games that remains unplayed is Eight-Minute Empire by Red Raven Games. I think I picked it up because it’s a 4X-style game that plays in slightly longer than eight minutes, but my wife will tell you I picked it up because I have a mental disorder that forces me to continually buy games. Whatever. Anyway, it’s coming to mobile soon so, while my copy will remain in shrink, I might actually get a chance to play it.
iOS, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • “What game had you up so late last night,” my wife asked. I had been up until 1 AM or so, a rare thing is the age of the barbarian-monkey children, aka our seven-year old twin boys. “Predynastic Egypt,” I replied and was quickly greeted with a look of confusion. I explained it was a game set in Egypt, but well before the pyramids. It was a strategy simulation covering two millennia of ancient Egyptian history where you play as a nomadic tribe and grow that tribe, turn by turn, from humble origins toward the ultimate goal of unifying Egypt under your control within 220 turns. “Oooh, I want to play it,” was her immediate response. [Nick’s wife is cooler than my wife. Mine just elbowed me in the back and called me an idiot. -ed.]
iPad, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • When Prison Architect landed on our tablets earlier this year, it was a big deal. It not only marked another major PC title making its way to mobile, but it was also published by Paradox as part of their new focus on mobile gaming. We never got around to writing a review for Prison Architect here, mainly because it’s too damn big and I just never felt like I got deep enough to have an opinion that’s worth a damn [as opposed to your other opinions? Okay… -ed.]. The parts I did play seemed pretty polished and right in line with what I was familiar with from the desktop version. Apparently, however, the game had more bugs than an entomologist’s fever dream. Version 2.0 was just released and, judging by the patch notes, all the bugs have received a death sentence.
PC/Mac/Linux • We’re still holding out hope that, one day, Darkest Dungeon will find it’s way to our iPads. It was originally a “maybe” and then a “we’ll see” and lastly an “hmmm”, so it’s looking more and more that, if you want to play Darkest Dungeon (and you should), you’ll need to get it on Steam or GoG. For those of us already playing it on our laptops, however, today is a good day. More content in the form of DLC was just released, The Crimson Court.
iOS Universal, Android, PC/Mac/Linux • When Terra Mystica was released for iOS and Android back in April, I had hoped to get a review up about a week or so after release. Surely, one week would be enough time to get a few games in and form an opinion. You would think so, but then Race for the Galaxy happened and the rest is history. Luckily for me, this week I can give Terra Mystica a go on my Mac instead of my iPad, meaning I can play it without RftG softly whispering my name.
iPad, Android Tablets, PC, Mac, Linux • I’ll admit that when I first heard praise being heaped upon a PC title called Prison Architect, I was a bit suspect. I love builders and simulation games more than I love my second and third children (my eldest is okay, I guess), but the theme turned me off and I didn’t give it another look until well after it had been released. As it turns out, the only thing waiting did was keep me from playing a fantastic builder. This morning, Paradox released the mobile version of Introversion‘s Prison Architect for iPad and Android tablets and it sure is nice to test my electric chair while sitting on the couch.
PC, Mac, Linux • World-class style isn’t just reserved for the catwalk in Milan. Going by the likes of Mixed Bag, Santa Ragione and now Antab Studios, Milanese game development is about matching substance with impeccable visual kung fu. Having had my senses tickled by the likes of forma.8 (currently on sale, you know what to do), Futuridium (first-person or bust) and FOTONICA (PC or iOS; a personal pick for endless runner), it’s time to stir a little Last Starfighter into Lawrence Angelo’s coffee. Behold, the freshly-released GRIDD: Retroenhanced.
PC, Mac, Linux • The current go-to city builder on my laptop is Paradox‘s Cities: Skylines. Looks like it’s getting some competition, and soon, from…Paradox? That’s right, Paradox is publishing another city builder in the near future, but set in the distant future, and I think both will coexist peacefully on my hard drive. It’s called Surviving Mars and it looks pretty freaking great.
iPad, Android Tablet, PC, Mac, Linux • While you’re probably familiar with the fact that, last year, HexWar published a digital version of Academy Games‘ wonderful 1775: Rebellion, you might not be aware that 1775 isn’t the only game in the series. It’s actually only one of three games dealing with early American warfare with the others covering the French and Indian War of 1754 and the War of 1812. The games aren’t clones of each other, but they do share several similarities, so I had been wondering if HexWar would be porting the others to digital at some point down the line. We aren’t sure about 1754, but today they did confirm that 1812: The Invasion of Canada will be coming to in June.
PC, Mac, Linux • I remember talking with Owen back in the day and listening to him gush over Empire: A Deck Building Strategy Game as if it were the second coming of XCOM. Was his love for Empire a tad overzealous? Perhaps, but just a tad. Designed by Keith Burgun, Empire and his other titles, 100 Rogues and Auro, have all been the cream of the App Store crop since their release. Thus, you’ll be happy to hear that Mr. Burgun is working on another title and he’s currently funding it via Kickstarter. You’ll be less happy to hear that there’s no plan to bring it to mobile.