Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn’t get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can’t wait for our weekly roundups, and don’t want to wade through a whole day’s worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we’ve got a twist on Minesweeper, a beautiful avant-garde puzzle game, an arcade digging game, a skateboarding game, an arena shoot ’em up, an .io brawler, and a Disney-licensed RPG. Without further ado:
At some point in our lives, most of us have fallen victim to boredom to the point that we have explored the game Minesweeper on our computers. For me, I never found the number-crunching brain teaser gameplay that enjoyable. That is until now. Minesweeper Genius takes the core gameplay of Minesweeper and adds a fresh coat of paint that makes it all that much more a pleasure to play. Sure, the gameplay by and large is the same, as you will still have to calculate how many mines are in each column and line, but there are also a few surprises in store for the player such as randomly generated levels and cloud saving support.
Monetization: $1.99 / no ads / no IAPs
Inspired by the classic computer game from our childhood, Minesweeper Genius is a brain teaser that will challenge your mind and logical thinking. Help Aristotle – the genius with a broom – sweep the minefield to regain his memory and escape from the aliens’ scientific experiments, discovering where all the bombs are hidden.
With a busy schedule sometimes you can’t cover everything you’d like. This is why I wanted to make sure Homo Machina made it into our bonus round this week. If you enjoy avant-garde artwork, learning about the internal workings of the human body through puzzle solving, and anything to do with the 1920s, then Homo Machina is the game for you. Just take one a look at the beautiful screenshots below, and you can see exactly what I’m talking about. This game is a work of art, and not only that, the puzzles are quite enjoyable, and the story and music shouldn’t be missed either.
Monetization: $2.99 / no ads / no IAPs
Homo Machina is a puzzle game inspired by the work of avant-garde scientist Fritz Kahn. Set off on a crazy journey to solve the surreal puzzles of Homo Machina and learn about the internal working of the human body, represented as a gigantic 1920s factory. In this narrative puzzle, players are plunged into an ingenious system of nerves, vessels and valves.
Diggerman – Arcade Gold Mining Simulator
Last week I published a roundup of games that ideally need to be properly ported to Android. One of those games was Mr. Driller, which in my opinion is one of the best digging games ever made. This is probably why I was instantly drawn to Diggerman. It takes some of its design cues from Mr. Driller, such as air capsules that you need to collect as you dig. What’s nice is that this actually has a story as to why you are digging, and it also has a few boss fights. Plus the controls are dead simple and the monetization is fair.
Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $0.99 – $4.49
Dig, dig, dig. For love, for fame, for money. The world was beautiful some time ago. We lived together in our lovely cottage digging some mud every day. Suddenly everything has changed. HUGE ANGRY MOLE has come and kidnapped my beautiful sweetheart. Will you support me? Will you dig with me and help me saving my beloved?
Epic Skater 2
I’m not quite sure what to make of Epic Skater 2. The swipe-based skateboarding gameplay is very gratifying, to the point that I would say mechanically this is one of the best skating games on Android. The problem is there are way too many interruptions. Multiple currencies, loot boxes, and a bunch of other flashy garbage are thrown in your face every time there is a break in the gameplay, which is not only intrusive but frequent. All I want to do is skate, but it seems the game would rather I spend all my time wading through its numerous splash screens and menus designed to pilfer my pockets. So yeah, if you can deal with the crappy design, there is actually a really enjoyable skateboarding game underneath.
Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $1.99 – $9.99
Epic Skater is back, rebuilt from the ground up and bigger than ever. Thank you for your feedback. Hop in, unlock and upgrade all of your tricks to land the biggest combos. Play the way you want. Look the way you want in Epic Skater 2. Explore the Streets of Epicwood. Launch up to the Rooftops for a long half pipe session, or cruise down to the Subways to catch every rail.
Aero Smash -open fire
ZPLAY Games’ Aero Smash -open fire is a top-down voxel-based shooter that plays a lot like any other shoot ’em up. The thing is each stage has a border, and you are free to roam around inside, which makes it a lot less linear than your average shooter. Once you rack up enough kills you will face off against a boss. Your end goal is to collect as much currency as you can while shooting those enemies and bosses so that you can afford all of the cool skins available for your aircraft.
Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $0.99 – $19.99
Drive you plane to guard your territory and shoot down all the enemies. You can collect and own more than 135 kinds of planes. An unknown and thrilling adventure will be started from a random unique map. The world will show up as a huge map. 360-degree free shooting.
Crescent Moon Games is known for publishing many phenomenal titles on Android such as Shadowblade, Morphite, and The Deer God. So it is no surprise to see that they had something to do with the release of AXE.IO. If you are at all familiar with how most .io games operate, then there shouldn’t be too many surprises here. Surviving as long as you can is the name of the game, and within this release, you can do so with style thanks to the pleasant graphics. I have to say I’ve enjoyed my time with it as there is nothing that brightens my day more than mowing a few people down with an axe and sword.
Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $1.99 – $99.99
Thrown into a small battle arena with a squad of other deadly knights, you’ll have to slay them with throwing axes and survive as long as possible if you want to get out alive. With action packed, fast-paced gameplay and brutal combat, AXE IO will have you on the edge of your seat.
Disney Heroes: Battle Mode
What can I say about Disney Heroes: Battle Mode that I haven’t already said in my hands-on? As a high profile release, it contains some great artwork (if a little drab), along with fantastic voice work and a somewhat interesting story. The level of polish is assuredly high, but then you have to consider the gameplay. For the most part, it plays okay as a free-to-play RPG, though if you don’t enjoy hero collection games, you’ll probably want to skip this. What turns me off is how aggressively this is monetized, especially when you consider that it’s clearly aimed at children. But hey, as long as you know what you are getting into, I see no reason not to check it out, after all, who doesn’t want to build a team of fighters out of their favorite Disney and Pixar characters?
Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $2.99 – $99.99
Join the battle in this action-packed RPG starring Disney and Pixar heroes from The Incredibles, Wreck-It Ralph, Toy Story, Zootopia & more. Welcome to the digital City… and enjoy it while you can. A wicked virus is corrupting every pixel, turning even the heroes’ own friends and family against them.
Be sure to check out our gaming coverage from earlier this week: