Raceline CC To Launch Alongside iOS 9

Raceline CC

Raceline CC

Oxford-based studio Rebellion,  the independent games developers and comic book publishers (Yep they publish comics too) creators of Sniper Elite 3 and Zombie Army Trilogy, has announced that their upcoming mobile game; Raceline CC, will be one of the very first games to take advantage of Apple’s upcoming iOS 9 update.

Rebellion’s new first-person street racer will be supercharged with iOS 9-exclusive features, Metal-enhanced graphics and much more when it launches alongside the new iOS update.

Raceline CC sees players enter the world of motorcycle street racing, where glory is everything and milliseconds are vital. They will take on rivals in fast head-to-head races, weaving through traffic as they slipstream and boost along neon-lit streets.

System Requirements for the game are, iPhone 5s or above / iPad mini 2 or above / iPad Air or above and of course iOS 9.0 or higher.

This game is set the speed off on iPhone and iPad when it launches net to iOS 9 as a free download later this summer.

What do you think about the game? Share your opinion in the comment box below.

The World Ends With You 2 is Still a Possibility

The World Ends With You

The World Ends With You

You know what’s awesome and underrated? The World Ends With You. This action-RPG game came out in 2008 in PAL regions and North America on the Nintendo DS and has since became a bit of cult hit. There has been very little murmurs in this potential franchise since the games release, but Square Enix continues to show interest in it.

In July of 2012 the cast of The World Ends With You appeared as characters in Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance. Not only did they appear, but within the context of their story in that game and the story of the original game, their time in Kingdom Hearts 3D could potentially be canonical within their own series. Fans surely thought this was a sign of interest in a sequel, but nothing seemed to come from it. Then, in August of that same year, a teaser website for what appeared to be a sequel came up. It counted down the days until an announcement on the franchise will be made with each day the music on the site getting more complex. Fans were disappointed to find out that the announcement was not for a sequel, but for a port of the game on iOS. However, from that disappointment came hope. This image appeared at the end of the mobile port, which clearly seems to be concept art for a sequel.

The World Ends With You

Sadly, nothing about that image has been elaborated upon, and it has been three years. The only things that can really be gathered from the image is that the girl is a new character, seemingly a mixture of all of the main characters from the original game (Neku’s headphones, Shiki’s Mr. Mew, her clothes are the same colors as Beat’s, Rhyme’s pose, and her hair is the same color as Joshua’s), that the term “New 7 Days” logically means a sequel, and that fans have dubbed this girl Hype-Chan.

Square Enix is clearly interested in this game, and a sequel on iOS devices or 3DS would make sense for the franchise. Possibly Square Enix has been at work on a sequel but don’t want to announce it since they already have so many games announced that are nowhere near being released, like Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy XV, and the Final Fantasy VII Remake. Either way, I hope at some point this series is revisited, and quite frankly, Square Enix would be insane not to.

Fallout Shelter: An Average But Important Game

Fallout Shelter

Fallout Shelter

You may have noticed that Fallout Shelter, Bethesda’s free-to-play mobile offering where you manage an underground Vault and its dwellers, has been doing rather well lately. It has stormed the iOS App Store charts in many countries, making headlines for knocking mobile legends like Candy Crush off of the top spots.

I have been playing Fallout Shelter since it was released two weeks ago and whilst it has managed to keep my attention, I wouldn’t say it’s a great game. Your job is to build up your vault and populate it either through having your dwellers procreate or by attracting survivors from the Wasteland. You assign them a room to go to and each room will provide a resource such as food, power, water and health packs. From time to time your vault will experience some kind of catastrophe, whether it’s a fire, rad-roach infestation or a gang of randy raiders looking to ruin all your hard work. Shelter is at its best when you only pick it up for five minutes or so; collecting your resources, perhaps building a new room or two and leveling up your dwellers.

Fallout Shelter

But there are so many times where you will have long stretches of not really having anything to do. You won’t have enough caps to build new rooms, no new people in your vault to assign a job to and no new resources to collect from any dwellers you may have sent into the Wasteland. The way the game handles combat is also uneven and unintuitive. One minute you’ll be taking on heavily armed raiders with no problem at all, and the next you’ll be losing half of your population to one, lone roided up rad-roach. What I’m saying is that the game definitely has its issues.

And yet despite these issues, I love Fallout Shelter. Not because of what it is, but because of what it represents. It is a free-to-play game that doesn’t shove its monetisation options in your face at every opportunity. It isn’t pay-to-win; the in-app purchases only provide you with the same items and resources that non-paying users receive. And the prices aren’t extortionate. The most expensive purchase is $19.99; and whilst that isn’t exactly nothing, it’s a far cry from the $99.99 that gets asked for Gold and Gems in games like Game Of War and Clash Of Clans respectively.

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Even at points where you would expect the game to throw up reminders, such as when you try to spend more caps than you have  or when you have a long wait time till your next resource collection, it doesn’t. It won’t suggest purchasing a pack of lunch boxes to maybe get more caps, and there are no purchase options to speed up wait times. The game never forces you to the purchase screen and barely even mentions it. Only when you look for the purchase screen will you find it.

The reason all of this makes me so happy is because Fallout Shelter has done so well; it is in the top charts for many major markets on both iPhone’s and iPad’s. Ok so it isn’t the number one grossing game of all time, but it has made the charts within two weeks with minimal marketing and attracted an audience that normally wouldn’t go anywhere near free-to-play mobile apps.

As of June 29, Fallout Shelter is in the following positions on the iOS Games Charts (data from App Annie):

US, iPhone – No.3 in Free Apps, No. 10 Grossing
US, iPad – No. 15 in Free Apps, No. 24 Grossing

UK, iPhone – No. 4 in Free Apps, No. 10 Grossing
UK, iPad – No. 4 in Free Apps, No. 14 Grossing

You can check out the full stats for yourself at App Annie. These are good numbers, and Bethesda didn’t even need to call in Kate Upton for help or plaster CGI trailers on every single YouTube video in existence.

Fallout Shelter shows that it is possible to deliver a successful game without having to resort to addiction tactics and locking off content behind a pay wall. Bethesda have treated their players with actual respect, as if they’re human beings and not just a vessel housing a wallet. And it brings a smile to my face knowing that there is probably a games analyst at some God-forsaken analytic’s firm looking at the games numbers and going insane because none of it makes sense. How could a game appear from nowhere, with no marketing budget, no pay wall, no ads and no extortionate in-app purchases and still make money and get into the App Store Gaming Top 10?

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This is why Fallout Shelter is important; because it sets an example. It shows that you can make a game that people enjoy, and make money from it without having to be under-handed. Yes, the game had help by being announced at E3 and by being based on an already popular IP, but that doesn’t mean Bethesda had to make it the way it is. They could have easily made the game pay-to-win, or flooded it with ads or made the in-app purchases go up to $100, but they didn’t. They kept it free and fair, and have been rewarded justly.

My hope is that mobile game developers will see this example set by Bethesda, and take it into consideration with their future games. I hope that they see it as an alternative to just trying to squeeze as much money out of players as possible. And maybe, just maybe, we’ll get some better games out of it.

The Best Games You’ve Never Heard Of: Men’s Room Mayhem

Mayhem

Continuing our journey into the more obscure corners of the Gamingsphere, we have another indie release. This time, we’re fleshing out one of video games’ more neglected genres: the Help Tiny Cartoon Dudes Not to Pee on the Floor ’em up. Because that’s totally a thing, mostly courtesy of Men’s Room Mayhem.

This arcade title was brought to us by Ripstone. It’s a cheeky little touchscreen affair, akin to the acclaimed Flight Control in its toontastic visuals and control system. Only, here, we’re directing a stream of patrons around the men’s room, and trying to prevent lapses in hygiene/fistfights/puddles of pee on the floor. Yes indeed.

Men’s Room Mayhem consists of a series of… bathrooms, increasingly fancy locations which serve as the game’s levels. You’re presented with a topdown view of your urine-smelling domain, and a fairly strict time limit. ‘Customers’ will enter the bathroom of their own accord, and you must draw a path for them to follow. From the entrance to the urinal/toilet (a charming little icon above their heads will show you which they need) and back to the door, put simply.

Etiquette bonuses, handwashing bonuses... they're all here for the wily player.
Etiquette bonuses, handwashing bonuses… they’re all here for the wily player.

Naturally, though, there’s more to it than that, which is where that big ol’ MAYHEM in the title comes from. As with Flight Control, you’ll need to manage everybody on the screen at once. Your stylus-flailing skills will have to be top-notch to avoid all of the dangers, as this deceptively simple-looking game has a lot of factors to consider.

Firstly, patrons cannot cross paths. This will instantly cause a fight to break out (perhaps symbolic of men’s extreme intolerance for small talk while they’re having a wee). This will give you one ‘strike,’ of which you have a limited number before game over. The same applies to taking too long to get somebody ‘relieved,’ which will yield you another strike and a mess on the floor.

Suffice it to say, once the game has introduced you to the basics it gets very hectic very quickly. Later, special characters will appear, and have particular requirements (for rather obvious non-dangly-anatomy reasons, the rare female visitor can’t use the urinals). Men’s Room Mayhem is an odd little package, but one full of achievements to earn and highscores to tackle. If it strikes a chord with you, there’s a very addictive experience here.