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Mobile - The Weekender: Home Edition

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The Weekender: Home Edition

It’s felt like a very busy week – plenty of news to write-up, and I’ve been experimenting with a wider range of topics and angles to see what happens as there’s not as much to review at the moment. Got a few more things in the pipeline for February, but expect a more conservative approach from me as we approach the beginning of March as the new team will likely be in place by then and I’ll need to facilitate a formal handover.

Meanwhile, in the world of mobile games…

New App Releases


Disgaea 1 (iOS & Android)


The Disgaea series is very well regarded as far as tactical JRPGs are concerned. Over-the-top, bonkers, but also featuring some quite clever twists on the genre that has even won fans amongst western audiences. If you like Final Fantasy Tactics but felt there wasn’t enough anime in it to make it pop, then this series is for you.

Luckily, you can now travel back in time to experience the birth of this series with the complete edition of the first game, now available on iOS and Android. Buyer beware though – NIS have taken a page out of Square’s book and are charging $32.99 for the game. Hopefully you save up that pocket money this month.


Spelltower+ (iOS Universal)


I’m not even sure Pocket Tactics existed when this game was first released back in 2011, but we do have a lot of time for Zach Gage and his slightly off-kilter creations. This was a word-puzzle game, but one that involved tumbling towers of letters and modifiers and other unique elements not often seen in this genre.

If you never played this game the first time around, then now’s a great time to start with the ‘+’ edition, which is mainly about making it work better on modern devices (it has been nearly a decade, after all) but it does have 11 game modes to keep you occupied. It’s an ad-supported free-to-play game with a $5 unlock to remove them.


Top free-to-play offerings that caught our eye:

  • Magic: Manastrike is a more traditional lane-based auto-battler that seems surprisingly tactical and obviously as that MtG sheen to it. Available on iOS and Android.
  • Might & Magic: Chess Royale – is meant to be some kind of bizarre hybrid of Auto Chess and Battle Royale. It looks bonkers, and we’ve got someone having a proper look at it as we speak. iOS & Android.
  • Dungeon Faster – the art-style reminds me of Meteorfall, and bills itself as a “fast-play” rogue-like card game. Offline mode and available on iOS and Android.

App News & Updates


We quite liked Grimvalor when we originally reviewed it, so we’re pleased to learn that the dev team are working on an update that not only localises the game into eight new languages, but also includes a New Game+ mode as well. They’re currently looking for Beta testers, and you can email them here if you want to take part. This news comes via the TouchArcade forums.


Arnold Rauers, fresh off the release of his newest Tinytouchtales creation Maze Machina, has just released a breakdown of how the first two weeks went. Some interesting insights to be gleaned here, including:

  • The game was developed in about a year with a three-man team doing part-time work.
  • Miracle Merchant, TTT’s last game, was released in August 2017 and the app store has changed a lot since then.
  • Maze Machina has brought a revenue of $14,000 in the first two weeks, 99% of it from iOS. This is compared to Miracle Merchant’s $40,000 in the same period (~35%)
  • The experience has led Rauers to the conclusion that he needs to fundamentally change the way he sells his games.

It paints a bit of a bleak picture for premium mobile games made by small developers, but we’re glad Mr. Rauers isn’t totally disillusioned by the experience. We’d hate to see him stop making great games.

While we’re talking about the business of making mobile games, PocketGamer.biz have posted an interesting breakdown of top app performers for the week January 12th – 18th. It breaks down the top ten apps by Downloads, Active Users and Consumer Spend, and it’s interesting to see which games are succeeding in which category. PUBG Mobile had the most people playing it, but the Honour of Kings player base spent the most money.

Book of Demons is a rather interesting desktop game that combines dungeon-crawling with deck-building, and it’s being brought to tablet after a year of delighting PC players. The developers are currently looking for beta testers for the Tablet Edition, if you’re interested in checking it out. Again, this news comes via the TouchArcade forums.


Last but not least, if you’re a fan of Pokemon and the Pokemon ecosystem, you might be excited to learn that Nintendo have announced the pricing and launch features for their planned Pokemon Home hub service that will in theory connect all of your Pokemon games together via the cloud. It will be coming to mobile and the Nintendo Switch, although some features will be unique to specific platforms.

There’s also a free and a ‘Premium Plan’ option, with that latter scaling from $2.99 a month up to $15.99 for the year. You can read more about it on the official website.

pokemon home

App Sales


It’s a bit of a dry week for app sales, although all of the Holy Potatoes! games are discounted again to their Christmas 2019 price of $1.99. This only on iOS sadly; what HP! games are on Android (which is not all of them) are still full price.

Seen anything else you liked? Played any of the above? Let us know in the comments!



https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/2020/01/...e-edition/
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