iOS Board Games

Among the best things in life is playing printed games in person with family and close friends. When those are not convenient we like iOS Board Games. News, reviews, previews, and opinions about board gaming on iPhones, iPads, iPods and even Android devices. (iPhone board games, iPad board games, iPod board games, Android board games)

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App News: Gloom Kickstarter Goes Live, 1775: Rebellion Beta Underway, Warlock of Firetop Mountain Gets a Teaser and more...

David Neumann
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Kickstarter for Gloom: Digital Is Live
Over a year ago we announced that the transparent card game, Gloom, would be coming to digital. Since last June, news of Gloom's development has been hard to come by. In fact, we haven't come across any news since then. That changed last week when we received a missive from the chaps at Sky Ship Studios telling us that the Kickstarter for Gloom had gone live.

The Kickstarter is for the PC version of the game, which is being developed first. A tablet (both iPad and Android) version will be following the initial PC release.

This will be a port of the second edition of Gloom, and it appears that the Gloom: Unhappy Homes expansion is being developed at the same time. Other expansions are planned as well, with the ability to buy a Season Pass which will snag you all expansions as they release.

The Kickstarter has 20 days to go and is still over $40K away from being successfully funded. In other words, they could really use our help. Head on over to the campaign and check it out. You can get in on the ground floor (base game + Unhappy Homes) for only $15.





HexWar Launches the 1775: Rebellion Beta
Back in early June HexWar opened beta signups for their upcoming port of Academy Games' fantastic 1775: Rebellion. Considering how much I love the game, I leapt at the chance to drop my name in the hat. Earlier today I learned that I was accepted into the beta, which I can only assume means that the beta is now underway.

The current beta is only for the PC version of the game which, considering I have a Mac, is problematic. No worries, I will find a way to play this.

I'm not sure if we can discuss particulars of the beta, but I have a call in with HexWar to figure out just how much I can talk about. If they give me the green light (and I can get it to work on my ancient desktop PC), I'll post some thoughts.

If you signed up for the beta, check your email. Mine was in my spam folder, so you might want to check everywhere before you assume that you didn't make it in. They're also sending them in waves, so keep checking.



Tin Man Games Releases Teaser for Warlock of Firetop Mountain
I love me some interactive fiction on the ol' iPad [Dave's trying to be folksy. We need to stop him. -ed.], especially the new breed of IF that feels more like an RPG or adventure title than a stodgy old book. One of my most anticipated apps is Tin Man Games' port of the Fighting Fantasy classic, Book 01: The Warlock of Firetop Mountain. Not only was that book a huge part of my geek training as a kid, but Tin Man has blown it up and turned it into something that looks absolutely amazing. Don't believe me? Take a look at the trailer below. I've watched it 16 times now, and it still looks awesome.

The Steam version of Warlock is due to release at the end of August and we're hoping that the touchscreen version will release shortly thereafter. If we can dig up any mobile particulars we'll be sure to pass them along. Until then, watch this. Again.




[Editor's (not really...Dave wrote this and is trying to pass it off on me - the real editor) note: The remaining items have nothing to do with actual digital boardgames, but instead cover games that interest us and, we think, might be of interest to you, our beloved readers. If you came here to read stories that only deal with digital ports of physical board/card/war/role-playing games, then the following three items could create feelings of unease or, worse, rage. Please proceed with caution.]


The House of Da Vinci Now On Kickstarter
Did you like The Room series of puzzle games? They're one of my favorite and I always kind of wondered why, after the initial game's success, that the App Store wasn't full of The Room clones. Maybe they're hard to make. Who'd have thunk?

A game that looks like it draws an awful lot of inspiration from The Room is now on Kickstarter. It's called The House of Da Vinci and, just like those other games, looks beautiful and chocked full of puzzles that you have to interact with in a 3D environment.

The Kickstarter is pushing the game for iOS and Android. Not sure how they're going to distribute the game for iOS backers, though. As we've seen with Twilight Struggle, getting iOS games into backers' hands is harder than it should be.

The developer, Blue Brain Games, is looking for just over $30K to get this project off the ground, and with 22 days left has only gotten about 1/3 of the way there. Head over and check out the Kickstarter, but first take a look at this gameplay to see if this is up your alley. If you're a The Room fan, it should be.





Guild of Dungeoneering Now Live on iOS/Android
This released last week, but I'm old, slow, and, as my wife keeps reminding me, not particularly bright. As a result I missed it, but you should be used to my suckitude by now so this shouldn't really be a big surprise. Of course I'm talking about [More like rambling about. Pick up the pace. -ed.] the release of dungeon-crawling card game, Guild of Dungeoneering, which had been released on Steam last year but just found its way to iOS and Android.

Guild of Dungeoneering is a turn-based RPG which, in true Dungeon Lords style, puts you in charge of the dungeon and tasked with keeping those disgustingly decent adventurers out. It also has "hilarious writing!" Oh boy. Speaking as someone who's deluded himself (and his readers!) multiple times about his own "hilarious writing", I can only say that's a bold claim.

I'm done here...it's blurb time:

Gambrinous wrote:
Features:
• A turn-based RPG card game with a truck ton of personality, unique pen and paper visuals, catchy music and hilarious writing!
• Take control of your fledgling group of heroes and lead them to victory! (after admitting to a few defeats of course)
• Entice, coax and bribe your heroes to clear the dungeons you build by strategically placing rooms, monsters and loot from the cards you are dealt
• Get to know each of your hero’s personality and traits, upgrade your existing heroes, and add new heroes while you try out new strategies to keep from sending them to their doom!
• Manage your guild carefully and spend your hard earned ‘glory’ wisely to level up and unlock more rooms and equipment. Improving your guild means you'll have a better chance at beating the harder dungeons as you progress and take down the ultimate dungeon overlord.


It actually looks like a lot of fun and costs $4, but that will snag you all future content as well. Not a bad deal.

- Guild of Dungeoneering for iOS Universal, $4
- Guild of Dungeoneering for Android, $4
- Guild of Dungeoneering for PC/Mac, $15



New Puzzle Title, Colorcube, Released for iOS
Right after interactive fiction, I love me some puzzle games. It might be the perfect genre for mobile: playable in short, quick bursts with just enough brain-burniness to make you keep coming back. A new puzzle game was released late last week, and it looks like it fits the bill.

The game is called Colorcube and is designed by abstract board game designer Dieter Stein. The game gives you different colored pieces and your goal is to overlap them on the board to recreate a target image. This isn't just making the pieces fit, but also worrying about blending colors as pieces overlap.

Colorcube offers over 200 levels and also different color schemes for those with colorblindness. You can snag it for iOS Universal for $2.

- Colorcube for iOS Universal, $2
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Mon Jul 25, 2016 8:12 pm
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First Look: Maquis

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Maquis
Availability: iOS, Android
Price: $2.99 (Free onn Android)
Store Links: App Store, Google Play

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Fri Jul 22, 2016 4:23 pm
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App News: Playdek Servers Shutting Down (For Maintenance), Ogre Coming to PC, and Catan Gets an Update

David Neumann
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Playdek Shutting Down Servers Today
Ever since Twilight Struggle was released for iPad last month my friends keep telling me that I'm spending way too much time playing it. They're probably communists. Then again, they might be right. Earlier this week I had a dream in which Nikita Khrushchev banged his shoe on a desk but then a nude Eisenhower leapt through the window on the back of a unicorn (also nude) and pulled me to safety. It got weird after that.

Lucky for us (me?), Playdek has my back and will be curtailing my Cold War activities today. They're moving their servers and they'll be going offline for most of the day. Here's the official announcement:

Playdek wrote:
All Playdek game servers will be offline for most of the day on
Wednesday, July 20th as we will be migrating them to the cloud. Some
servers will come down starting this evening (July 19th PST) while
others will go offline in the morning (July 20th PST).

Account Services (new account creation and password reset) will be
unavailable starting today at 12 noon Pacific.

Further updates will be provided as servers come back online starting
Wednesday evening.


Seems simple enough, and I can always get my Cold War fix by going to sleep and having that recurring Yuri Andropov/Ronald Reagan mudwrestling dream. Hmmm. Maybe I should just play Lords of Waterdeep or Agricola.



Steve Jackson Bringing Ogre to PC
In the biggest news for ogres since Shrek the Third, today we received word that Steve Jackson Games would be bringing their classic tank battler, Ogre to digital with a PC version that's to be released in 2017.

The game is being developed by Auroch Digital who you guys might remember from the digital port of the classic solitaire game Chainsaw Warrior.

Not a lot of other info at this point, but we'll stay on top of things and keep you in the know as it moves forward.



Digital Version of Catan Gets Hefty Update
It's easy to think of digital board games and look at the newer and shinier ones that seem to be coming out every month and forget that the grandaddy of all these euros also has a home on the App Store. I'm talking about Catan, and the digital version just received a fairly major update.

I'd love to figure out a way to be witty about all this, but I'm writing this very late at night and I have that Yuri Andropov dream to get to, so let's blurb this:

USM wrote:
Catan 4.6.0 brings many improvements and new features. As a special thank you, the Seafarers scenario “Heading for new Shores” is now available for all players.
Now available: Mysterious, uncharted lands await you. Accept the challenge and explore varied random scenarios from the “The Islands” scenario pack!

Further news and changes:
- Fixed possible “dead end” in the tutorial
- Various smaller performance enhancements and optimizations


Catan is available for iPhone, iPad, and Android but this latest update only appears to be for the iOS versions for now.

- Catan for iPhone, $5
- Catan HD for iPad, $5
- Catan for Android, $4
- Catan for Kindle, $4
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Wed Jul 20, 2016 1:00 pm
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App News: Sushi Go Coming to Mobile, Heroes of Normandie for iOS Dated, Castles of Mad King Ludwig Updated and more...

David Neumann
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Sushi Go! Coming to iOS
The most incredible thing about Sushi Go! is that it's not the first game I've played with raw fish as a theme. Who'd have thunk that yummy, delicious sushi could have it's own section here on BGG? While the theme is interesting, the best news about Sushi Go! is that, while it's currently only a card game, it will soon be making the journey to digital.

Sushi Go! will be coming to iOS late summer/early fall of this year from Lummox Labs, a new developer made up of devs from Button Mash Games Inc. who brought us the excellent ports of Forbidden Island and Forbidden Desert. If Sushi Go! can even get close to the quality of those apps, I think we're going to be very happy.

The digital version of Sushi Go! will be for iOS Universal and will have both solo play vs. AI and online multiplayer using Game Center. It will also have cute animations, which is 98% of why I play digital board games.



Sushi Go is currently in beta and Lummox Labs are looking for testers. If you want to sign up and help bring a more polished Sushi Go! to the App Store, you can head over here and give it a go.

We should be getting more information--and hopefully more screenshots or videos--as we near release and we'll pass them along to you guys. Until then, take a gander at these early shots.





Heroes of Normandie for iOS Gets Dated
Heroes of Normandie arrived for PC last year and it was warmly received with the exception that the game's action cards weren't available in the digital game. That all changed this May when the action cards landed via a mega-update and Heroes of Normandie became one of the best board game ports on Steam. Still, the question remained when the long-awaited iOS version would be landing. Turns out we won't have to wait much longer.

Last week Slitherine Software and developer Cat Rabbit announced that the iOS version of HoN would be landing on the App Store on July 28th.

The iOS version will be Universal and should be a full port of the PC adaptation. Slitherine also hinted at more news upcoming, which sounds very much like expansions are in the works. We'll have to wait and see.

- Heroes of Normandie for PC, $30





Castles of Mad King Ludwig Updates to Version 1.1
One of 2016's best board game ports is the digital version of Castles of Mad King Ludwig from Ted Alspach and Bézier Games, Inc.. Early this morning we learned that a fairly major update landed for the game, bringing it to version 1.1.

Version 1.1 does what most updates do: fixes bugs. It also brings two new levels to the solo campaign: Waldeck and Sauerburg. Here's the update's full blurb:

Jeremiah Maher wrote:
• Two New Hidden "Bonus" Campaign Levels: Waldeck and Sauerburg
• Resolved issue with disappearing Corridors on restored levels
• Resolved issue with Pass button being shown when switching back from viewing another player's castle
• Other bug fixes and enhancements


The update is available right now on both iOS and Android.

- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for iOS Universal, $7
- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for Android, $7
- Castles of Mad King Ludwig for Kindle, $5



Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal Gets Major Update
We don't talk too much about wargames here on the blog, but Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal is a pretty good one from a one-man developer that deserves your attention. It's a solo wargame that puts you in charge of the US Pacific fleet against a rather ruthless AI-driven Japanese Navy during World War 2.

Last week, the game received a major update which fixed bugs and added some new functionality. A previous update also added a new scenario: the Battle of the Bismarck Sea.

Full blurb:

Cyril Jarnot wrote:
Custom search patterns
New launch icon
Better CAP management at sunset
Night landing is more severe on airfields

Bug fixes:
- the Japanese were using torpedoes to attack ground targets
- Air to ground air attacks were less effective than expected by the rules


If you're a wargamer and having a complex solitaire wargame on your touchscreen gives you warm fuzzies, you should give Carrier Battles a try. This is not an entry level wargame, but will take time for grognards to figure out. Luckily, there's about a million tutorials to walk you through every part of the game but, even with the tutorials, the game is hard to get into for wargaming newbies. I know this from first hand experience.

- Carrier Battles for Guadalcanal for iPad, $5
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First Look: Out There Chronicles

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Out There Chronicles
Availability: iOS, Android
Price: $2.99
Store Links: App Store, Google Play

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Fri Jul 15, 2016 3:00 pm
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App News: Smash Up Headed to Mobile and Police Precinct Released

David Neumann
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Nomad Games Ready to Unleash Smash Up on Mobile This Autumn
We all know and love Nomad Games Ltd (II) for their detailed and polished take on the venerable Talisman: Digital Edition, one of the finest board game ports you'll find on the App Store. Later this year, however, they'll be branching out into an entirely new franchise, Smash Up from Alderac Entertainment Group.



That's right, soon you'll be able to pit your zombie pirates against your friends' robot ninjas or dinosaur wizards. Smash up will be coming this autumn for iOS, Android, and PC/Mac via Steam.

Nomad Games wrote:
When the game begins, players take turns drafting one of several faction decks. Once each player has two decks, they shuffle them together, combining their distinct abilities into a unique 40-card deck. Players then deal out a number of Base cards, and play their decks to attempt to have the most power on a base when it is scored.

It may sound simple, but how simple is it when your opponent’s Zombie-Ninja Assassinate your minions then create an Outbreak, loading the Base with minions from their discard pile? Or when their Pirate-Dinosaurs Full Sail onto the base with the mighty King Rex, whose massive power dwarfs that of other minions?




Smash Up will offer both solo play vs. AI as well as multiplayer for up to four via either pass-and-play or online. As for factions, the game will launch with eight. Don't worry, though, as Nomad has stated that the cardboard expansions will be coming to digital via DLC.

As usual, we'll pass along any new information as we get it.





Police Precinct Available for iOS Universal
This may come as a shock to you, but Brad and I occasionally [often -ed.] miss things happening in the digital game world. Oh, sorry, I probably should have warned you to sit down before I broke such a shocking story. It happened [again -ed.] just this week when we were informed by you guys about a recent iOS release, Police Precinct: ONLINE.

Police Precinct: Online is the digital port of popular cooperative title Police Precinct from Common Man Games. In the game, players are tasked with solving a murder while also maintaining order on the streets.

The digital version is from A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. Games and that's where the blurb comes in:

A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. Games wrote:
Features:
-Online multiplayer (First ever online cooperative mobile board game)
-Pass and play mode
-Solo play mode
-Play and save multiple games at the same time
-Supports 1 to 6 players
-Choose from 16 cops (Contains real officers for characters)
-Invite friends to play
-In-game chat
-Board game comes to life with HD graphics, moving game pieces and various SFX
-Easy to set up, and learn the game while you play!


I think the guys from Handelabra Games might take issue with the whole "first ever online cooperative board game" part but, then again, Sentinels of the Multiverse, is a card game so, technically, they're correct.

Police Precinct is available for iOS Universal and runs $9 with no IAP in sight.

- Police Precinct for iOS Universal, $9

Hat tip: Eric Herman
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Wed Jul 13, 2016 2:02 pm
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First Look: Warhammer 40k Battlefleet Gothic Leviathan

Brad Cummings
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Warhammer 40k Battlefleet Gothic Leviathan
Availability: iOS
Price: $5.99
Store Links: App Store

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Tue Jul 12, 2016 7:00 pm
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App News: Huge Pathfinder Update Lands, 7 Wonders News(?), Boardnaut Releases Maquis and more...

David Neumann
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Huge Update for Pathfinder Adventures Finally Lands
We've spent the last couple weeks covering smaller updates for games like XenoShyft and Twilight Struggle, but the update everyone has been waiting for is for Obsidian Entertainment's excellent port of Paizo Publishing's card-based RPG, Pathfinder Adventures. As luck would have it, it appeared on the App Store this morning and it's a doozy.

The update is numbered 1.0.3.5 and the list of updates, fixes, and new stuff is huge. Take a gander:

Obsidian wrote:
-Over 30 new boosters added!
-Card frames are now color coded to make it easier to tell rarities apart.
-Previously, players would gain a free chest upon their first successful login. This has been changed to be granted after first successful completion of Brigandoom.
-Gold now scales based on party size and difficulty in Quest Mode and Story Mode Legendary scenarios.
-Treasure and Gold pages revamped
o Ten chests no longer grants a bonus chest; price unchanged
o Forty Chests upped to Fifty Chests; Bonus chests no longer included
-Augury: Fixed a progression break when you cancelled Augury.
-Character: Harsk: Gaining Reconnaissance, Track and Survivalist no longer causes a progression break.
-Location Close: Fixed a progression break when you cancelled a close attempt at a location that required a Banish.
-Location Close: A crash that occurred when rolling for items/weapons at the General Store/Goblin Fortress has been resolved
-Location: Warrens: Fixed a progression break when force closing the app during the villain cutscene
-Loot Rewards: Fixed a possible progression break when acquiring Loot rewards if a character in the party had already acquired the rewards in a previous instance
-Quest Mode: A Progression break is fixed when encountering Goblins at the Shrine to Lamashtu when the Goblin Difficulty Increase power is active
-Quest Mode: A Progression break when Encountering Rogors Craesby with the Summon Ancient Skeletons on Undead Encounter power is fixed
-Tutorial: Fixed a progression break that could occur in the tutorial if messages with confirmation windows were clobbered
-Haunt Cutscenes in Foul Misgivings now have unique audio.
-Dogslicer now has unique audio when rolling 1s.
-Barl Breakbones: The ghosts of characters defeated by Barl's first check no longer hang around to fight the second check.
-Blessing of Zarongel: Now has the Zarongel trait
-Cape of Escape: Now correctly usable outside of an encounter.
-Goblin Warchanter, Hags: Before You Act text has been rewritten to better communicate the implementation of the cards.
-Impaler of Thorns: Now correctly penalizes non-proficient characters.
-Orb of Firestorm (Booster): Fixed an issue where you could discard it instead of burying it.
-Rat Swarm: No longer shuffles into the deck when summoned and not beaten by 12 or more.
-Wand of Scorching Ray: Now correctly has the Arcane and Attack traits.
-Loot: Fixed an issue where Loot cards wouldn't always show under the correct filters
-Kyra: Using Heal then a location's exploration power no longer renders her unable to explore
-Kyra: Incorporeal monsters can now be properly defeated with Enemy Lore: Undead
-Skill Panel: Combat is now split into Melee and Strength and can be chosen at will. There are some outstanding functionality issues.
-Into the Mountains: No longer incorrectly deals damage when the Full Packs of Painful Memories wildcards are in play and activate.
-Characters: You can now have a maximum of 24 experienced characters in each mode, up from 20.
-Daily gold: Fixed an issue when Daily gold wouldn't remove itself after the timer expired
-PnP: Fixed a possible progression break if an offturn character played Cape of Escape
-PnP:Fixed an issue where an encountered card would visually disappear when requesting aid
-A number of problem scenario powers have been removed.
-Black Magga is no longer available as a villain.
-Fixed an issue where a character could die and level up but not receive their rewards.
-Ezren's Evoker specialization now correctly shows his hand size of 9 in the store.
-Effects Panel: Fixed a minor issue where the effects panel wouldn't close if it was open when opening the settings menu
-Card Selection: Fixed a minor issue where cards usable on the last turn of a scenario would retain the 'playable' highlight when performing post-scenario deck management
-Gallery: Unobtainable boosters that were incorrectly viewable in the gallery have been removed.


Curiously, I don't see a fix for the issue that some were having with Black Magga's scenario locking up, but you can check out the full patch notes and see that it has been taken care of.

One thing that hasn't been taken care of is the lack of new content. I think we all assumed that the next adventure pack, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Fortress of the Stone Giants Adventure Deck 4, would be included in the next update. No such luck, so those of us who have already unraveled the Hook Mountain Massacre have to wait a bit to try out those new skills we earned at the end of that adventure deck.

The update is now available for both iOS and Android. We'll let you know when the new content manages to see the light of day.

- Pathfinder Adventures for iPad (iPad 3 and up), free
- Pathfinder Adventures for Android, free


7 Wonders Resurfaces
Hey guys, it's Brad popping in to add something that happened just moments ago: So I woke this morning to a notification that there was a new update to the 7 Wonders beta. The last update was in September of last year. I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but it is uplifting to see a build appear again. Let's see what happens next!



Solitaire title, Maquis, Released for iOS and Android
Boardnaut Studios arrived on the scene earlier this year with Land 6. Turns out Land 6 wasn't their first digital port. Earlier last year they released another print-and-play title, Maquis, on Android. Today they also released it for iOS.

Boardnaut wrote:
Maquis is a solitaire worker-placement game with variable goals. The player places his resistance agents on spaces around town to achieve his goals (blowing up trains, publishing underground newspapers, aiding spies etc.). At the same time collaborators and soldiers patrol the area. Agents who can't make it back to the safe house at the end of the day are arrested, and never seen again.


Maquis has nine different missions to play and six different difficulty levels.

- Maquis for iOS Universal, $3
- Maquis for Android, $3





Atacama Lands on the App Store
From the I-have-no-idea-what-I'm-talking-about-files comes a digital port of a little known title, Atacama. The game's title on the App Store is Atacama - The Mining Conflict, so at least now we have a theme.

The game comes from developer ycyclop games and has both pass-and-play multiplayer as well as 4 levels of AI for solo play. The biggest question is just what the hell Atacama is:

ycyclop games wrote:
Excitement in the Atacama! Valuable mineral resources — gold, silver and copper — have been found in the 1,200 km long desert in Chile and Peru along the coast of the Pacific Ocean. Several companies are already busy prospecting by erecting huge drilling rigs as the resources are deep under the surface. Due to security reasons, the drilling rigs cannot be installed too close to one another, so each new rig limits the possibilities for erecting new ones in the surrounding areas.

What’s more, the mining rights have been limited by the government. The companies have received a concession for only two of the three commodities – and extracting the “wrong” type of commodity will result in penalties. Becoming rich is a difficult business, but the stakes are worthwhile.


Sounds good, and it's also an area control game which are usually in my wheelhouse. Even better, it's only $1 so it won't screw up your budget if you give it a go. On the downside, the app isn't Universal so be prepared to play it in 2x mode on your iPad.

- Atacama - The Mining Conflict for iPhone, $1
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App Mystery: Nomad Posts New and Mysterious Image

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A Smashing New Image Appears on Nomad Games' Facebook Page
Any ideas? We'll have more details next Wednesday. Until then, mull it over in the comments.

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App News: Armello Gets Major Update, Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft Update and more...

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Armello Updates to Version 1.4
Armello has been live for PC/Mac on Steam for so long now that it's hard to remember that, yes, it is coming to mobile devices someday. When it does land on mobile, it's going to be incredibly polished as the Steam version was just updated for the fourth time with an update dubbed Battle Tides.

If you're not familiar with Armello, developer League of Geeks has created an original board game that looks like furry heaven. Players control one of four anthropomorphic animals all vying to become king now that the king (a lion, of course) has gone mad and is dying due to something called Rot. The game has combat, exploration, strategy, and some very clever card play and is actually quite awesome.

Version 1.4 brings a slew of new to the game including combat system improvements and new cards, as well as fixing up some lingering issues and tweaking the balance of this and that. If you want to take a peek at the entire list of changes, check out the patch notes.

If memory serves, we shouldn't expect to see Armello on our tablets until 2017. Until then, you can play it on your PC/Mac.

- Armello for PC/Mac via Steam, $20

Hat tip: Esteban Vasquez



Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft Get Updates
We usually don't talk about app updates unless they're whoppers or bring some new content to the game. That said, Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft are two of the best board game ports you'll find on the App Store, so today we're making an exception.

Twilight Struggle was just released a couple weeks ago, and this is already the second update showing that Playdek is staying on top of things. It's a short patch list, but here goes:

Playdek wrote:
- fixed removing influence with Cuban Missile Crisis
- fixed available space race attempt indicator lights
- fixed action round display during end of turn
- adjusted AI handling of 3 or more scoring cards in hand


In other Twilight Struggle news, Playdek also released a Kickstarter update yesterday indicating the troubles they're having distributing iOS codes to backers. This isn't a Playdek issue, but instead revolves around the iron fist with which Apple controls the App Store. There just aren't any good methods of getting iOS codes to backers. As such, they are offering the following for backers who have not yet received their codes:

Playdek wrote:
We have a plan to address the unfortunate inconvenience and will cover the options below. These options relate to the $15 Tier and all Tiers $30 and up (except for the $25 Digital PC Tier and the $35 Digital Sony Tier):

Backers at the $15 Tier who have not yet received their iOS copy and have not already switched platforms may choose one of the following options:

-Select one of these platforms to replace iOS: Android, PC or Mac
-Request a refund of $15

Backers at the $30 and up Tiers who chose iOS as their platform, have not yet received their iOS copy and have not already switched platforms may choose one of the following options:

-Select one of these platforms to replace iOS: Android, PC or Mac
-Request a cash rebate of $15

Backers at the $15 Tier and above who purchased the Mobile Add-on and selected iOS as your add-on platform:

-Request a cash rebate of $5


You can find more information and instructions on how to do all this over at the Kickstarter page.


Let's move onto XenoShyft now. When it comes to board game ports, I can't think of another one that gets as many regular updates as XenoShyft. Cool Mini Or Not has been stellar in adding new content, addressing issues, and tweaking the UI. It's hard to imagine now, but when XenoShyft first launched last summer, it was nigh unplayable. Now, it has a permanent spot on my iPad's home screen.

Last night saw the latest update come XenoShyft's way. No additions or expansions in this one, but they did manage to do something cool, shrinking the download and footprint size of the app by optimizing the hell out of it.

Cool Mini or Not wrote:
-Installation and download sizes for the game should be much smaller now, thanks to some nifty optimizations
-Game now waits for players to be ready after a Fight step resolves
-Wrap-up phase will no longer be auto-skipped if you have any troops in lane(s)
-UI will no longer briefly show the "ERROR" dialog when quitting a finished game
-Grave Titan Tarantula ability and its ilk will now properly highlight the burned cards on clients
-Fixed an issue with Division cards ending up in the wrong place during Solo Play
-Fixed an issue with some Hive buffs being removed before they should
-Under the hood rules engine improvements


You can pick up Twilight Struggle and XenoShyft at the following:

- Twilight Struggle for iPad, $10
- Twilight Struggle for PC/Mac, $15
- XenoShyft for iOS Universal, $5
- XenoShyft for Android, $5
- XenoShyft for PC/Mac, $10



inkle Studios Discusses Sorcery! Part 4
According to the byline on their blog, inkle Studios released this new info about the upcoming Steve Jackson's Sorcery! finale back in early June. Somehow I missed it. I say somehow because there are few titles that I'm anticipating more than the digital version of Sorcery! Book 4: The Crown of Kings and I thought I had been staying on top of any new news coming from the inkle camp. As I say as least 26 times a day, I was wrong.

Many of you are probably aware of inkle from their globe trotting adventure, 80 Days, which is understandable. It's a fantastic title and one of the best pieces of interactive fiction ever created. That said, inkle stole my heart with their take on the Sorcery! gamebooks from the early 80's and I consider the existing three volumes to be their magnum opus. It's only going to get better when the final piece is put into place and we can bring an adventurer all the way from Analand to Mampang to complete their quest.

Last month's update delves into where they currently are with part 4 of the series. The writing is complete, but they're not ruling out adding or tweaking more as the beta wears on:

inkle wrote:
Writing on the game has now finished, again. That means we've done our first pass, fleshing out all the rooms, encounters, characters, secrets, jokes, puzzles, hidden endings. And we've also done our second pass, playing through everything, smoothing it, checking for logic and story consistency, and getting the pacing as slick as we can.

We're now embarking on the long process of beta-testing - gathering feedback from early players, and hunting down all the strange nooks and crannies of the story-flow. A lot of the details can and will still change at this point - good ideas are never thrown away, even close to release - but if we had to put down our pens tomorrow, we could, and the game would work.


Of course, writing the text is only one step. They still need to add audio and other visuals. For the first time, they'll be using 3D miniatures on the maps and are also busy creating an epilogue for those of us who bring our adventurer all the way from Analand.

This will also be the first time that they're releasing the title for all platforms simultaneously.

inkle wrote:
For the first time, we're planning to launch the game on the App Store, Amazon Store, Play Store, Steam, Humble and Green Man Gaming all on the same day. You can buy the game on any platform to continue your adventure - cloud saves work from one device to another. (Just remember to write them down somewhere!)


Unfortunately, they still aren't giving a definite release date other than "later this year". It's going to be a long wait.

If you haven't played any of the previous Sorcery! titles and are a fan of interactive fiction, you're missing out. I really cannot recommend them highly enough.

- Sorcery! Part 1 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 1 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 1 for Kindle, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 2 for Kindle, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for iOS Universal, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for Android, $5
- Sorcery! Part 3 for Kindle, $5

- Sorcery! Parts 1 and 2 for PC/Mac, $10
- Sorcery! Part 3 for PC/Mac, $10
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