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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)

Archive for Bradley Cummings, Editor

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Live Stream: World of Tanks: Generals. Watch for chance to win a Beta code!

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I have been wanting to stream World of Tanks Blitz, one of my favorite games of last year, for a while now. This week the new World of Tanks Generals card game has entered beta, and we have a handful of codes to give away.

World of Tanks is a pretty fun and respectful wargame series, albeit buried beneath of mountain of abrasive PR. This card game is a new world of mystery. Is it more than just a Hearthstone gold rush cash in? Come watch live to find out.



If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Thu Mar 5, 2015 2:00 am
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Wargame Review Roundup: Ultimate General: Gettysburg, Pike and Shot, and Hell: Fight for Gilrand

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Grognards unite! The last few weeks have played host to the release of several new wargames for digital devices. The settings vary from the American Civil War to a ghoulish fantasy realm. As I am very behind on my reviewing schedule, lets take a quick look at each.



Ultimate General: Gettysburg
Availability: iPad
Price: $7.99
App Store Links: App Store

This game has been tempting us with its beautiful design for more than a year. Ultimate General: Gettysburg is slow-paced RTS based on the famous battle. For an RTS, it really sticks to the history and provides the same challenges and lines you expect. On iOS the battle is split into different scenarios which cover a set number of hours. You are free to play both sides. While it is limited to the one battle, there is a fair number of scenarios and variety.

Units are controlled in real time but take quite a while to respond and move, this is not a twitch based affair. Units have some basic controls such as run, charge, fortify, and retreat. The use of these commands is key to success. There are also general units which an exert influence and increase morale. As you command your units you will see soldiers fall and lines form up. It is all presented in a beautiful way. This is hands down one of the pretties wargames I have played on iOS.

Ultimate General Gettysburg is difficult. I wouldn’t call myself an expert but I have played a few wargames in my day. With this one, however, I lose repeatedly. The biggest issue is I am not sure what to fix. While the game features an excellent tutorial, I feel like the first mission is directly into the fire. That being said, those wiser than I will not have issue, but for a more casual wargamer it is almost impossible to breach.

I really admire this game for its presentation, UI, and controls. They are literally some of the best on the platform. For me personally I found the game too crunchy and impossible to comprehend form a casual point of view. Your strategy game chops will really be the guiding light here. If you consider yourself a strong strategy gamer, this is not one to miss.



Poll
How would you rate Ultimate General: Gettysburg?
5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star
      59 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





Hell: Fight for Gilrand
Availability: iPad
Price: $12.99
App Store Links: App Store

Back at Slitherine’s press convention in 2014, we learned about a fantasy wargame built in the BA2 engine by Hunted Cow. That game was Hell and last week it was summoned onto iOS. In Hell you command an army of fantasy units through a campaign fighting demons and other monsters. Much like Battle Academy 2, the game is all about using terrain to your advantage and properly flanking/supporting troops.

The main difference here is the fantasy world. instead of tanks and artillery, you have knights, wizards, and paladins. Each mission features a different mix of units and using each type of units wisely is key. The games features two lengthy campaigns and a well done tutorial. It is great to see the presentation of Hunted Cow improved through the Battle Academy engine.

If I have one complaint about Hell, it is that is too similar to Battle Academy. In many ways it feels like a quick re-skin. Many of the attributes and mechanics from BA2 are carried right over. This is not necessarily a problem as the BA series is very well done, however, it often does feel to dwell with the setting. Because it stays so close to its roots, battles feel slow and cautious. This made sense for WW2, you need to set up positions and attack the enemy. With a fantasy world, I expect more boldness and recklessness, but the system just doesn’t allow it. You are always on even power level with the enemy and need to use any advantage to get the upper hand. It feels disjointed.

It is great to see the Battle Academy engine branch out but here I think more could have been done. Hell is a fine strategic wargame but does not seem to bring much new to the table compared to the series it stems from.



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How would you rate Hell: Fight for Gilrand?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      21 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





Pike and Shot
Availability: iPad
Price: $19.99
App Store Links: App Store

Pike & Shot is another title built in the Battle Academy 2 engine. Unlike Hell, however, the game feels fresh, different, and entirely unique. Some mechanics remain, but the core gameplay is very different.

In Pike & Shot war is a formal affair. On a given battlefield, you can get a clear view of all units on the board. Fitting in with the time period, this game is more about assessing the situation and finding a way to break your opponents. Each of your units has a very clear use that is explained beautifully by the game’s tutorial. Your goal is to correctly match up these advantages and hopefully cause the enemy unit to break. Most units have the ability to attack at range, but also the ability to charge. This ability is key as it is the main way you will set up fronts and push enemy units back. Charge also has its tradeoffs as it locks units in combats and prevents ranged attacks.

Much like Ultimate General: Gettysburg, this is game is all about setting up lines and knowing when to charge. Making these calls is the key to victory. The game features a tutorial along with two campaigns. They do seem lengthy and battles quickly escalate to a very large scale. There is a ton of wargaming goodness in this package.

I’ve really enjoyed Pike & Shot. It is a refreshing take on wargaming for iOS and shows great potential in what the Battle Academy engine can do. I really recommend checking this one out.



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How would you rate Pike and Shot?
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Poll created by thequietpunk
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Wed Mar 4, 2015 3:00 pm
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Weekly Stream: World of Tanks Blitz and World of Tanks Generals. Come win a beta code! Wednesday 3/4 9pm EST

Brad Cummings
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I have been wanting to stream World of Tanks Blitz, one of my favorite games of last year for a while now. This week the new World of Tanks Generals card game has entered beta and we have a handful of codes to give away.

World of Tanks is a pretty fun and respectful wargame series, albeit buried beneath of mountain of abrasive PR. This card game is a new world of mystery. Is it more than just a Hearthstone gold rush cash in? Come watch live to find out.

Here are the details:

When: Wednesday, March 4th, 9:00pm EST
Where: BoardGameGeek on Twitch
Who: Dave and I


If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Tue Mar 3, 2015 3:00 pm
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Review Roundup: Capitalism Quest, Auro, Sopio, and Trouble with Robots

Brad Cummings
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I am ashamed. I have been playing many great things, but PAX and Toy Fair have made it hard to find solid review writing time. As a glorious cop out, I present a series of quick hit reviews.




Capitalism Quest
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: Free
App Store Links: App Store

This game is a mystery. It is a free to play (no IAP) timer based game that has me totally hooked. Capitalism Quest is all about building resource producing buildings, collecting those resources, and building more buildings. Each time you exploit a natural resource your charity level goes down, but can go back up by planting forests. All this is done on a shared world with other players. You can build houses that you can eventually sell (and other players can buy) as well as establish markets to sell excess resources.

The gameplay is fairly simple but great for dropping in every couple of days. While timer based, there is no need to constantly be checking in. The developer has said he intended most people to check in about once a week. The real hook here for me is the persistent, shared world. In my few weeks of playing, I have seen new players come into the game and suddenly start building up around me. The players even teamed up to build a road that runs down the vertical and horizontal middles of the current map. Imagine Sim City lite in a shared world.

Capitalism Quest is an interesting social experiment. Much like Peter Moleyneux’s Curiosity app, this game keeps you coming back to see what they community is doing. I highly recommend it.



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How do you rate Capitalism Quest?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      22 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





Auro
Availability: iOS Universal, Android
Price: $2.99
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play

Keith Burgun is back again with another weird, bizarre, brilliant game. In Auro you are trying to bump all enemy monsters off the board with the titular character Auro. You have a series of spells and abilities to help you in this task, but it will also require a healthy amount of brain power. Auro is a deep, challenging puzzle game.

The game features a pretty lengthy tutorial which walks you through all the monster types you will encounter and the spells needed to defeat the. Some monsters are “heavy” and cannot be bumped without using a spell, others can only be bumped once they are frozen. You will want to do a good portion of the tutorial as the main game will expect you to have the majority of the knowledge contained within.

The main gameplay is a series of “dungeon runs” where you are trying to make it to the end of the dungeon and bump monsters off the board. Bumping monsters earns points towards a target score for that run. As you complete goals, you will level up which will unlock more challenging boards. The game is not afraid to throw almost anything at you. If you are a puzzle lover, you are going to find perfect gameplay here.

Auro features a beautiful animation style with sprites reminiscent of the SNES era. That being said, the monsters can be just plain weird, but that is part of the fun. Auro is a challenging game but a rewarding one. It makes you think and lets you celebrate your victories. This is a strategy puzzle game that should not be missed.



Poll
How do you rate Auro?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      27 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





Sopio
Availability: iOS Universal
Price: $1.99
App Store Links: App Store

Imagine, if you will, that Fluxx and Munchkin were designed from the ground up to fit perfectly on mobile devices. Both have a lot going on the table that really hinders mobile play (while the Fluxx app is a noble effort). Sopio is a game in the same genre (you lose because I played a card, haha) as the above, but is an digital original. Because of this the gameplay fits perfectly on mobile. This is by far its greatest strength.

In Sopio, your goal is to reach 1000 points. This is done by playing cards on yourself or others. Any card in your hand can be played on any player. You play one card each turn and draw one additional card each turn. Some cards give you points while others take them away. Additionally there are several cards that provide special actions like reversing the flow play or forcing a player to discard cards. Games go until either one player reaches 1000 points or a the deck runs out and ever card has been played. Generally it is the latter. It becomes this push your luck game of holding on to certain so your last play puts you in the lead.

Sopio is the best fit of this type of game on iOS. The flow is easy to follow and gameplay is quick. However, overall the game just didn’t grab me. This gameplay is fun in the right setting but solo against AI on mobile is not really it. It is a well done app, but a lackluster game.



Poll
How do you rate Sopio?
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      16 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk





Trouble With Robots
Availability: iOS Universal, Android
Price: Free with IAP
App Store Links: App Store, Google Play

Don’t we all love a good defense game from time to time? Trouble With Robots takes the defense formula and mixes it with deck building. You are a fantasy army trying to stop an onslaught of robotic invaders. Accompanying your battles is a silly story with moments of humor.

Before each battle you select a deck of five to seven cards. These are then dealt to you in random order during the battle. Each card will either producer a certain type of unit such as peasants, elves, dwarves, and more, or a card may represent a spell. Unlock many defense games, the goal is to build up a larger and larger army throughout the battle. You even received rewards for not losing a unit during a wave. Healing is key and one of the main strategic choices in the game.

The game features half a dozen missions to try and then additional chapters via IAP. While not reinventing the genre, the deck and hand management does add a welcome twist to the defense gameplay. Definitely give this one a try.



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4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
      35 answers
Poll created by thequietpunk
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Fri Feb 27, 2015 1:49 pm
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Live Stream: Ultimate General Gettysburg. Watch now!

Brad Cummings
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Ulimate General Gettysburg deployed on the app store over the weekend, coming from a successful stint on Steam. This is a modern take on traditional wargames. It is sort of RTS but the action is much slower and ponderous than your typical game of that genre. This is not a twitch based affair.

The Battle of Gettysburg holds a special place in my heart, and this game is an interesting and beautiful take on it. Tune in live and watch I try to convince you that this RTS is perfect for turn-based wargamers.

Here are the details:



If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Fri Feb 27, 2015 2:00 am
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iOS Board Games at PAX East: Will You Be There?

Brad Cummings
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It’s that time of year again, time to gather in Boston for one of the best board and video game conventions of the year. Next week, I will trek to the frozen, post-apocalyptic wasteland that is Boston to bring you updates and news on the latest in digital board games and strategy games from the show.


For Game Publishers, Developers Designers
We are looking to do video demos of the latest digital board games and strategy games at the show. Do you have a game debuting at the show or coming soon that you want to show off?

We would love to meet with you. To schedule an appointment you can geekmail me or email me at brad(at)boardgamegeek.com

Note: Our time at the show is limited, so we may not be able to fulfill every request.


For the Rest of Us
You can follow all the action here on BoardGameGeek. We will be posting news updates throughout the show and in the week(s) following. We will be running around the show covering all the latest from the show.

For more minute to minute updates, be sure to follow us on Twitter:
iOS Board Games Twitter - @iosboardgames
Personal Twitter - @bradbgg
Instagram - @bradleyjamescummings

Also, I would love to meet up with BGG users at the show. We should be hanging out in the open board gaming area most nights, so be sure to send me a tweet or geekmail if you want to meet up.

See you at the show!
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Wed Feb 25, 2015 6:00 pm
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Weekly Stream: Ultimate General Gettysburg. Wargaming fun! Join us Thursday 2/26 at 9pm EST

Brad Cummings
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Ulimate General Gettysburg deployed on the app store over the weekend, coming from a successful stint on Steam. This is a modern take on traditional wargames. It is sort of RTS but the action is much slower and ponderous than your typical game of that genre. This is not a twitch based affair.

The Battle of Gettysburg holds a special place in my heart, and this game is an interesting and beautiful take on it. Tune in live and watch I try to convince you that this RTS is perfect for turn-based wargamers.

Here are the details:

When: Thursday, February 26th, 9:00pm EST
Where: BoardGameGeek on Twitch
Who: Dave and I


If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Tue Feb 24, 2015 3:00 pm
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Live Stream: Kingsport Festival. Come Watch Live Now!

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Kingsport Festival slipped on to the App Store last week. It is the latest app from iNigma, the developers of Inkognito and Kingsburg.

Dave and I will dive into this surprise digital board game. Can we be the most despicable cultists? There is only one way to find out. Join our live stream this Thursday.

Here are the details:



If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Fri Feb 20, 2015 2:00 am
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Weekly Stream: Kingsport Festival. Tune in for some Lovecraftian fun! Thursday 2/19 at 9pm EST.

Brad Cummings
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Kingsport Festival slipped on to the App Store last week. It is the latest app from iNigma, the developers of Inkognito and Kingsburg.

Dave and I will dive into this surprise digital board game. Can we be the most despicable cultists? There is only one way to find out. Join our live stream this Thursday.

Here are the details:

When: Thursday, February 19th, 9:00pm EST
Where: BoardGameGeek on Twitch
Who: Dave and I


If you can’t make it live on Twitch, be sure to check out the YouTube archive after the fact.
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Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:00 pm
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Toy Fair 2015 Round Up: King of Tokyo Coming, NorthStar Digital News, Upcoming Releases from R&R Games, and more

Brad Cummings
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This weekend I had the chance to head to New York Toy Fair. This very business focused show sees offerings from the mainstream as well as our beloved board game studios.

While this is a slow time of year for announcements, I was able to get some updates on several projects. Let’s dive right in:


King of Tokyo Coming in 2016
We’ve been following King of Tokyo in the pipe for nearly a year now. This lively game seems like a perfect fit for iOS and it is one of our most anticipated titles.

Chatting with the team at Toy Fair I was informed that King of Tokyo is looking at a 2016 release. Part of the long development cycle is the inclusion of new content from designer Richard Garfield. When I asked if they app will contain content from both King of Tokyo and King of New York, I was told there will be some sort of combination.

Check out the video for more details:





Multilingual One Night from Bezier Games
While Bezier Games has not announced any new digital products, they are hard at work on a major update to One Night. This update will add support for 15 languages. This includes not only the text in the game but also localized voice overs. This is a pretty huge undertaking and shows a great level of commitment to their users. Languages include Dutch, French, Korean, Chinese, Spanish, and even Canadian (eh?). Look for that update coming soon.


NorthStar Games Starts on Evolution
As we announced at Gen Con, NorthStar Games is starting their own digital studio. Things have progressed since then and they now have a team in place. The first project on the docket is Evolution and they are in the early planning stages now. This looks like a great opportunity and we look forward to seeing the first product from this in-house studio.


Martin Wallace's Steam coming Third Quarter 2015
At Gen Con we learned that Steam was coming to digital devices. That was really all we knew and even now, details are still limited. However, I have confirmed with Mayfair games that the title is on track for release during third quarter 2015. We should have more details soon, so stay tuned for that.



A Busy Year for R&R Games
R&R Games is working on a ton of things in the digital realm. First of all, they have a developed a platform app for all their digital and physical products. This app features a catalog of all their physical products with direct links to the app store. The same is true for their physical catalog. Additionally the app features helper tools for many of the R&R products. These include timers, first player selectors, and more. If you are an R&R fan, look for this tool in the next few weeks.

Additionally, a digital version of Plucking Pairs is in the works, aiming to release in April or May of this year. Also the multiplayer update for 1st and Goal should be out in that time frame as well.

Check out the video for more info:

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Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:36 pm
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