March 10 iPhone Picks
It's our first iPhone roundup of the year and we're starting with a bang. With the likes of Broken Sword: Director's Cut, Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars and Plants vs. Zombies, the iPhone is finally worthy of being referred to as a competent gaming system in the same breath as the Sony PSP and Nintendo DS. Besides the increasing number of gaming ports, there are also signs of some great original titles such as Cogs and X2 Snowboarding. Without further ado we begin with my personal favourite iPhone game of recent months, Broken Sword: Director's Cut.
Broken Sword: Director's Cut (2.99 GBP)
Broken Sword has been around quite a few years in various forms. Originally on the PC, its director's cut came across to the Nintendo DS and Wii last year, and now we see it for the iPhone. So what makes it a cut above the rest in the point and click adventure genre? It's many things. Broken Sword's story is compelling throughout with much of this thanks to the vulnerable main character, George Stobbart, being instantly endearing. Throw in more twists than you can shake a stick at and it's memorable to say the least. The director's cut has made a few minor tweaks to existing puzzles while also adding extra scenes involving Nico, the female protagonist, as well as extra touch-based puzzles which fit well into the style of the game. The iPhone adaptation is actually stronger than the Wii and DS version which is credit indeed when you bear in mind the significant price difference. An essential addition to anyone's iPhone game collection.
Cogs (0.59 GBP) (extra puzzle packs available for 0.59 GBP each)
Cogs is really rather clever. You have to build machines using sliding tiles in various 2d and 3d environments. Like so many before it, its Cogs simple nature that makes it so addictive. For the initial fee of 59p you get 10 puzzles with additional sets of 10 puzzles for further investments of 59p. It might put some players off slightly but its well worth the price considering it only works out at 6p a level. The early levels are rather easy to complete but its not long until youll be scratching your head trying to solve the challenging and ever perplexing conundrums. Dont expect an easy ride but do expect to feel very satisfied once youve solved each level. One for the old grey matter.
Giana Sisters (2.99 GBP)
Older gamers may remember Giana Sisters from once upon a time. It was released originally on the Commodore 64 but quickly pulled from shelves due to an extremely obvious similarity with Super Mario Bros which made Nintendo none too happy. However those who did get a chance to play the game remembered it fondly as a terrifically enjoyable platformer. So to see an iPhone port of this cult classic is excellent news indeed. Much like the 8 bit version all those years ago, Giana Sisters is brilliant, traditional platforming fun. With 32 retro levels and 80 brand new levels to traverse, there's plenty to do at an excellent price.
Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (5.99 GBP)
It was only a matter of time before we saw a Grand Theft Auto game appear for the iPhone and I'm so pleased to say it's Chinatown Wars. It was already phenomenally great on the DS and PSP, and in many ways more enjoyable than the almighty Grand Theft Auto IV. The very fact that you can buy this for a mere 5.99 GBP makes it an utter bargain. Returning to a graphical style more reminiscent of the first two GTA games was an inspired touch. The control system has been ably converted to the iPhone's touch based controls. Everything about Chinatown Wars oozes class that belies its low price. Nothing vital has been missed out with hundreds of missions, two complete islands to explore and plenty of weapons and cars to acquire. You'd be mad to miss out on this brilliant slice of gaming.