Apple’s giving away a copy of a fun and popular running game, Chameleon Run, on their Apple Store app. Note that I wrote “Apple Store app,” not “App Store.” You’ll have to download Apple’s Apple Store app, which is essentially an app version of their website, to get this game. Once you’ve downloaded it, go to the “Discover” tab if it’s not already open, and scroll down to the section that looks like this:
Then, download the game.
So what is Chameleon Run? It’s a fun, fast paced, level based platformer style running game with a twist. Continue reading →
Uber has engaged in questionable tactics since the company was founded. Long before we found out about the pervasive culture of sexism at Uber and the #deleteUber campaign, Uber was doing everything they could to reduce costs, increase business, and retain customers and drivers, and it would frequently cause them to break rules and even laws. Travis Kalanick, Uber’s founder and CEO, is willing to forgive and cover up sexual harassment, track customers long after their rides, start campaigns to harass and annoy competitor’s drivers, reduce payouts, and even break strikes. That behavior is only recently starting to backfire, as customers have grown fed up, and announced they won’t support such a company. But Uber was almost killed off once before, by Tim Cook, CEO of Apple. After finding out Uber was tracking users, Cook called Kalanick into his office, and personally repremended him, even threatening to pull Uber out of the App Store.
Starsceptre is a retro top-down shooter for the iPhone and iPad. Interestingly, it’s a game that was made for iOS devices, by iOS devices. The developers at 8bitMagicGames wrote the game using iPads and a programming tool called Codea, which uses the Lua programming language. Below, you can check out the trailer of the game in action, which is coming soon to the App Store. The game looks to feature the frantic pacing and controls the genre is famous for, with players tapping on the screen to shoot and tilting their devices to move, allowing them to shoot enemies and dodge obstacles and enemy fire. These kind of ferociously fast-passed shooters in space have always been popular with gamers, and have a long history. The first video game was Spacewar, which was also a top-down shooter. Making a game like this with a retro style isn’t just poetic, it’s a tried and true game genre, tons of fun and easy to learn. Continue reading →
Apple will be addressing the complaints of both iOS users and developers with two updates to reviews on iOS. The first change will be one to alleviate a problem that has likely frustrated users: annoying rating popups. Developers often send popup notifications while people are using their app, which asks the user to rate the app. If they choose a high rating, the app will invite them to post it to the App Store. If they give a negative review, the app will usually throw up another popup asking them to send feedback. This feedback will not end up in the App Store. if you decline to send feedback, you may be asked to rate it again, and again after that. Apple wants to make this less frustrating.
Apple’s second change will not only be delightful for app developers, but is one users may find helpful as well. Developers will be able to respond to users’ ratings in the App Store. This will allow them to provide customer support or address feedback right in the App Store, which improves everyone’s experience. Together, these changes will help make iOS apps better. Continue reading →
My first problem with Meitu has to do with the uncanny valley. Big anime eyes and unrealistic proportions makes some of these photos look a little off, somewhere between artificial (creepy) and attractive. My second is a feminist issue. Preying on our fears of looking unattractive with an app promising impossible beauty standards is the very reason some girls grow up thinking they’re never good enough because they’re not perfect. But, all of those are minor, and to be honest, I’d be lying if I said I never did some touching up of my own photos in Pixelmator or Affinity Photo. The real, or at least the most immediate, problem is privacy. The app is free, but it collects user information on both iOS and Android and sends it back to the company’s servers. Continue reading →
The last original RollerCoaster Tycoon game for iOS, RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile, was a disaster. It was ruined by freemium pricing tactics taken to an extreme. The game was almost unplayable, and certainly no fun. Fortunately, the series wasn’t completely lost, as the original publisher created a port of RollerCoaster Tycoon 3. This was a full port of the original Mac/PC game, and was available for a single price with no in-app purchases. It’s a great game, and I still play it on occasion. However, it made me miss the game I grew up with. I remember taking turns with my brother to play the original RollerCoaster Tycoon on our computer. The first game was a masterpiece, and the original creator, Chris Sawyer, was a mad genius. In order to cram the most features he could into the limited size of the game, he coded it in pure assembly code. There’s not a person alive who likes assembly code, but everyone loved what he created. RollerCoaster Tycoon was a blast, and RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 added some great features to the original. It’s frequently called the best RollerCoaster Tycoon game by fans of the series. Now Atari has an original game based off of RollerCoaster Tycoon 1 and 2, and the final creation, RollerCoaster Tycoon Classic, has everything we loved about the original, in part because Chris Sawyer came back to work on the game. Best of all, Atari abandoned their freemium pricing model for a much more traditional one. Continue reading →
The App Store is full of amazing games that often get passed over because of their “high” price. Which, by the way, isn’t that high when you consider the work that goes into them. Anyway, back to the cheap games. Most of these games have premium prices because players gain access to the full game, little to no in-app purchases. I didn’t even know a few of them had in-app purchases! These games are usually $5-$10, but for the holidays, you can get them for just $1. I already went on a little shopping spree. You can find fantastic premium titles like Alto’s Adventure, Assassin’s Creed Identity, Mini Metro, AG Drive, Space Marshals 2, Never Alone: Ki Edition, and much more. Get them while they’re cheap! (Of course, comin in at under $10, these are pretty much always cheap, but you get my point.)