Sideways scrolling platform games aren’t as popular as they used to be. To maintain interest in a genre, developers need to come up with unique twists that will keep gamers coming back for more. Failing that, a good movie tie-in never hurts. Fortunately, GameLoft has managed to do both with The Adventures of Tintin.
Recent Reviews - Page 17
You may remember the developer's name from Mobile Darts, which I reviewed last year? This has now been updated but, in case you're wondering, many of the same criticisms apply to the new version. But while Darts Scorer stays with the same theme, it's an application designed to help you play the real world game. And, although somewhat primitive in interface, may be helpful to those for whom mental maths is not their strongpoint.
You may remember that I reviewed the rather limited HDR (High Dynamic Range) Photo Camera back at the start of the year, concluding that it was extremely limited in what it could do on the phone (not all its fault) but that it had vague possibilities in terms of gathering bracketed exposures for later HDR processing back on the desktop. And now we have HDR Pro Camera, from a different author - can it achieve better results, either on the phone or back on your PC? In short - not really, though as with the earlier application, the real limitations are in Symbian OS itself and in the amount of RAM available.
I get a lot of Tower Defence games across my desk. It’s amazing how many variations on a simple genre you can have. Then again, it’s not a simple genre – Tower Defence combines strategy with resource management, or at least it should. With Elemental War you have to pitch the power of the elements against endless hordes of enemies. Is the gameplay more than elementary though?
Symbian has had rather limited options when it comes to dealing with podcasts. Since Nokia's Podcasting client disappeared, the only option has been Podcatcher - or side loading MP3s via a desktop media manager. A new podcast client, Podmaster, is now available - but only for Nokia Belle handsets. Is this the master of all podcast clients, or just a pretender to the throne?
One of the simplest and most addictive games I've seen yet on Symbian, a combined puzzler/arcader that works absolutely superbly as a 'one more go' casual title. On your own, or against a friend, you guide your car towards refuelling points and service centres, and away from hazards. The further you get, the higher you score. A game for one or more players (via Bluetooth), it's an insanely good way to while away a few minutes here and there during your day.
It's not often I highlight a theme here on AAS, but this one's worthy of the spotlight. A lot of our Symbian^3/Anna phones have AMOLED screens, which means that the blacker a theme is, the more power you'll save. Yet a totally black theme (as per the Nokia-supplied 'Midnight' defaults) is pretty boring - surely there's a compromise between boring and really colourful? Something power efficient yet with good colours and a consistent 'message'? Rush Hour, by Arjun Arora, caught my eye as having all these attributes, here are screens of it in action. Along with a few more general musings on themes in general...
Either Christmas is season for small utilities or perhaps now is the time of year when I finally get round to looking at them? Either way, here's a look at Decibel Meter, an ultimate one trick pony application that works surprisingly well. Go on, have a guess what it does...
It's all very well having 'Equaliser' presets in Symbian's Music player, but what about if you want a different EQ profile? There's no way to edit the defaults, out of the box, but smartEQ promises to allow this, plus the creation of your own custom EQ profiles. How does it work and how effective is it?
What do you get if you cross Breakout with Doom? No, really. Breakfest provides all the gameplay of the famous ball and block games, complete with every power up option you've ever seen, in full animated texture mapped 3D, with explosions and other visual effects. And, yes, you even get to fire missiles at various points. All that's missing are the monsters...