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2010: Phil’s picks

I’m a pretty avid toucharcade reader, and I got inspired by the staff picks posts to do one of my own. In the past decade I haven’t been much of a gamer, but I think in this past year I’ve really begun to game much more consistently. I think the introduction of the iPad was the biggest influence in that. The iPad is a gaming device that really works for me. For whatever it’s worth, I often game on my iPad using a pogo sketch stylus, which gives much better precision than a finger and makes it so my finger doesn’t obscure the action.

As for gaming, I’m a pretty tough customer and not many games truly strike my fancy. Personally I’ve always had a draw to side-scroller games and point-and-click adventure games, so you can see my bias towards those in my selection. I’m a rather casual gamer, so the games I like tend to work well as short-players. The gameplay does not require me to dedicated my life to mastering the game or enjoying it. That said, here are the few games that I really latched onto and played to death this year (in no particular order):

Babylon Twins

This is a side-scroller game and the best one I’ve played on the iPhone. The mechanic of having the two dependent characters really add that “difference” to make the game unique. I played this game on my iPod touch.

Robot Wants Kitty

This was a great series of flash games written by my friend Mike Hommel. These are mini Metroidvania games starring a robot who is seeking out various items (a kitty, a puppy, a gold fish, and finally some ice cream.) I had so much fun playing these games I dressed up as the character for Halloween this year.

Scarlett and the Spark of Life: Scarlett Adventures Episode 1

This is an adventure game and the writing in this game is hilarious. I’d say if you enjoyed Monkey Island you would enjoy this game. This is only the first chapter of the game, but I’m very eager to see the next. The game combines a very fun mix of characters and nonsense to build a very fun experience. I played this game on the iPad using a stylus.

Helsing’s Fire

This is a great game. The user interface was very touch oriented, which I always appreciated. The reverse-stealth mechanic really appealed to me since I’m working on a stealth game right now. And the main characters camaraderie was depicted in such a “mobile friendly” fashion that I just really enjoyed the whole game! I played it on my iPad using a stylus.

UFO on Tape

This game simulates a person in a car video taping a UFO sighting. It is a perfect simulation of the experience. I’m a huge X-Files fan, so getting to live out the attempt at videotaping a real UFO sighting from a car was a ton of fun. I played this game on my iPod touch.

There have been a TON of other really great games that came out this year. And in fact there were a few others that I invested some serious time into that I haven’t listed here. I wanted to keep my list to 5 apps, so I had to make some cuts! And if I were some kind of review site that was obligated to highlight all the best of the best, well, I’d have more to say. But really – those games are the ones I latched onto, and maybe you’ll like some of them too 🙂


One Response to “2010: Phil’s picks”

  1. strom Says:

    Somehow, I had looked a Pogo stylus for drawing apps on iPad and hadn’t considered playing Galcon with it. Now I definitely have to go buy one!

    (Thanks for the game list. I haven’t played any of those, but I loved Monkey Island, and I’ll be checking them all out.)