Readers’ App Reviews – May 2012

Ryan Poolos Ryan Poolos
Read about some great apps made by fellow readers!

Read about some great apps made by fellow readers!

This is a post by Reader’s Apps Reviewer Ryan Poolos, an iOS Developer and founder of Frozen Fire Studios. Checkout his latest game, Cyborg Livestock. Checkout his latest website, iHelp.

Its that time again! May came fast and we’ve got a ton of apps to show for it. You’ve all been very busy building some very fun games and useful apps.

This month there are a lot of super addicting games, making it very hard to actually write the reviews instead of playing. Sorry Ray! :]

You guys blew away Aprils record for submissions. Over 45 incredible apps came through my inbox this month. Thank you all for your submissions.

As you know by now there’s only room to post fifteen reviews per month. Remember its not a popularity contest or judging, this is just something we do to help out our readers and build community. As such, active readers, forum members, and those who submit all the required information gain priority. The apps are not posted in any particular order or rank. Make sure you check out the Honorable mentions to try out the apps I didn’t have room for!

So get ready to find out about some awesomely fun apps and games by fellow readers!

Bricks Trouble Origins

Bricks Trouble Origins is ultra addicting. You’re a space pilot named Jed, and you like to blow up groups of blocks floating in space.

Where’d the blocks come from you ask? Don’t ask questions private!

The trick is you have to convert uneven clusters of bricks into perfect rectangles so they explode, adding some fun strategy to the game.

Features Game Center and OpenFeint so you can compete with your friends for high scores as well!

Particulate

Particulate is a a fun tool for creating beautiful particle systems on your iPhone.

It’s very fun to play around with but it’s also very powerful. It even has the ability to layer multiple particles from a single emitter!

Performance in my experiments was very impressive as I pushed my aging iPhone 4 to the limits with 6 or 7 layers at a time all with radically different settings ranging from lifespan to color to spin.

It has everything you’d expect from a particle emitter. You can email yourself a plist for your newly created particle or use iTunes file sharing to download it to your computer. I didn’t try it but I’m sure using your created particle in CAParticleEmitter or Cocos2d would be a breeze. So get out there and start making particle systems on the go!

Blow Out Monsters

Blow Out Monsters is a great action/strategy game. You control a space ship with a powerful laser cutting through space. Your goal is to divide and conquer all the monsters, by cutting pieces of the board out so the monsters are trapped outside.

The twist is you can turn on and off your laser but when you turn it on you lose your shield and are vulnerable to the monsters attacks. This makes for a really fun game that requires good timing, and better strategy!

Color Pad for iPad

Color Pad is a freestyle drawing application with a clean and fun interface that gives you everything you need to make art.

How great that art is will depend on you :]

You can pull in pictures from your iPad’s photo library to give your picture a realistic background. Once you finish you can save it off to your iPad Photo Library or share it with friends through email and Facebook.

Color Pad for iPad is one of the simplest drawing apps I’ve seen. It gets all the interface distractions out of the way so you can just draw. Great for kids or overzealous adults who like to touch every button :)

Good news: Abdul threw in an extra promo for you guys! Grab it quick: YP3P6M4KRPEL. If you snag the code, please draw Abdul a thank you and post it to the comments :) Happy Coloring!

Gravity Pop

Gravity Pop is an ultra addicting puzzle game where you control gravity itself!

Simple swipes on the screen change the gravity of the game board. Use your new found power over gravity to tip the scales in your favor as you try to pop groups of colored bubbles.

With three exciting game types, three bonus power ups, and global high scores you won’t be bored anytime soon.

Beware, power over gravity is addicting and will ruin other games for you as you try to cheat with simple swipes in other games. I tried to swipe the gravity in Angry Birds but it didn’t work :[ +1 Gravity Pop! Angry Birds 0.

Good news: Jonathan was kind enough to throw in some promos for you guys too! M7MXY9A9NHN4,734K3JYE6EN3,3PNRH46RHFFR,WY4N9R9KNKE3

Video+

Video+ is a great app for recording video with effects. Some really really cool effects. Its like Camera+ for Video. Imagine that haha!

I didn't count the effects but I'd bet theres over 30. And each effect has a full range of settings to adjust it. Some can be edited so far it's almost a completely different effect.

After you've recorded your video it's saved to your Camera Roll so you can do whatever you like with it. Including AirPlay out to your Apple TV. Definitely worth checking this one out.

Missing Melody

Do you more the death of CD's? Vinyls even? Do you love and miss the good old days of 8bit soundtracks? Then this game is for you!

In this game, your goal is to save the dying record industry. To do this, you transform into one of three characters and embark on a quest to retrieve all the lost CDs and records. But watch out for brick walls, snowcats, and giant pits in the ground!

Missing Melody has some awesome music. And a very cool controller system allowing you to pick between good old buttons, hidden touch zones, or simple swipe based controls.

Don't let the record music industry down!

Gemstone Challenge

Gemstone challenge is a super addicting puzzle game based on matching gem blocks by color and shape. It has single player classic, timed modes, and online multiplayer through GameCenter.

If you're like me, then it won't take long to find the gems closing in on you. Thats where the multicolor super bombs come in to save the day and blast away entire rows at a time!

Brag about your high scores in the comments all you want (but don't expect to beat my 98,300)!

Good news: Julien was nice enough to give me an extra copy to pass along to you guys. Grab it quick! YLW76JNFEN44

Flip the Bird

Flip the bird is a very special bird. His hunger knows no bounds. So much so that he devoured his own siblings!

Understandably, that made his parents kinda mad so the kicked him out of the nest. Your goal is to help him survive in the scary world outside, by dodging deadly bees and rocks.

Try to hitch a ride on a runaway crow or high strung squirrel. Use unsuspecting birds and mushrooms as boosts while you bounce and flap along.

You've never met a bird quite like Flip!

Quadrobounce

Quadrobounce is single player pong on steroids, where you control four separate paddles using your iPhones accelerometer.

Did I mention there were four paddles? How about that they move around simultaneously exactly based on your tilt? Ok cool. ;]

This game is super simple to pick up and play but it definitely takes practice to master. GameCenter integration brings it all together. Quadrobounce!

RPS Mutants

RPS Mutants is fresh take on a good old favorite. Its rock, paper, scissors like you’ve never seen it before. In fact, its the cutest, most addicting rock, paper, scissors variation I’ve ever seen!

Rocks, pieces of paper, and you guessed it, pairs of scissors rain from the sky for some strange reason. You’re randomly assigned an item and you’ve got to stay clear of enemies that can hurt you and copies while trying to snag as many victories against the weak enemies as you can.

But beware or dangerous, shape-shifting, lightning that will mutate you into another RPS artifact and throw you off your game. Keep an eye out for powerups too like invincible shields and turboboosts.

Pool Chalkboard

Pool Chalkboard will help you take your Pool to the next level.

You can use it to plan out your next shot with painstaking precision. Or you can show off that really cool trick shot you did down at the pub. Or if you’re like me and can’t play pool to save your life, you can show everyone what you were actually aiming for. :p

However you use it, Pool Chalkboard will make a great addition to any complex pool master conversation.

WordJams

Word Jams is a fresh take on word games.

After picking your difficulty (Hard Crust if you’re a man!) you’re given a fresh batch of toast to jam. One at a time you are given letters to place on your toast board. The goal is to try and lay them out to create as many words as possible.

After you’ve laid all your jam it will score your toast and determine how many words you made. Swiping will show you words made and tapping the words will show you their definition. Definitely original, definitely fun!

Picross HD

Picross is a fun puzzle game that give you numerical clues to help solve a pixel grid design.

It’s a very addicting game, with tons of puzzles to keep you going. If you manage to run out, there are several puzzle packs to buy in the app – including an Unlimited Daily puzzle upgrade for you hardcore Picrossers!

Good news: Tod was nice enough to give me some extra promo codes for you guys! Get them while they’re hot! Y3PRN9FRYW3T, JWNF39Y6W7AP, NXW737MWJ336

Zip Zap

Zip Zap is a killer 3D space game. Asteroids are all over the place crashing into your ship. Its up to you to blow them up with your power shield.

Tap where you want to go and blow up all the asteroids along your path. As you beat back the asteroids more will come. If you’re really good you’ll get more ground to cover. Powerups will help you along the way. Its super addicting once you get started.

Defend your ship at all costs! Oh, by the way, I made it to 338,807! Beat that!



Honorable Mentions

Here are the apps that didn’t get reviewed. Remember it wasn’t a popularity contest or even a rating contest. Forum members got priority among other factors. Your apps were great and I’m sorry we didn’t have time to review them all!

Feed Browser

Worktime Radar

Awesome Cowbell

Monster Mayhem Apocalypse

Picky Fruit

iBehave

Dream Guy

Period Plus

Linsanity Rush

iSalePrice

Reddit Photo Clock

Qi iQ – Learn Two letter Words

Baby Shaper

BallsBreaker

Dilemmas

My Kids Health

Where2Boss

World of Luck

Where To Go From Here?

Thats it for May! Looking forward to the apps you make next month! Since we’re getting so many responses to better your odds, please make sure you include all the requested information the first time around.

If you are a reader of this site and would like to be considered for this column, click here!

I hope you enjoyed this column, and I look forward to seeing what you guys come up with this month! :]


This is a post by Reader’s Apps Reviewer Ryan Poolos, an iOS Developer and founder of Frozen Fire Studios. Checkout his latest game, Cyborg Livestock. Checkout his latest website, iHelp.

Ryan Poolos
Ryan Poolos

Ryan Poolos (@EmperiorEric) is currently a Senior iOS Engineer full time for BMW. However he also has his own company Frozen Fire Studios and subsidiary PopArcade. He also keeps up with iHelp in his freetime.

Ryan also has over 10 years of web development experience and 6 years of Graphic Design experience. Ryan loves everything tech and tries hard to stays up with the latest and greatest.

If you are a reader of this site and you would like your app reviewed, click here!

User Comments

4 Comments

  • Thanks Ryan for the mini review, and thanks Ray for...everything. Your site really got me started with everything I have done in the last year, development wise. I finished my first app (quadrobounce) in a little under 8 months in my spare time. It hasn't been a runaway success. In fact I have only made about $25 total from it. But I learned so much by going through the whole process, and your site was instrumental in that journey. I actually just signed up for my second year in the developer program, so hopefully there will be more to come.

    If it would be possible, my website has changed to http://jonathanhirz.com, and it would be nice if the link in the post could be changed to that. Thanks.
    jonathanhirz
  • Thanks for the review of Gemstone Challenge.
    This is a game that I made in my spare time to learn obj-C and ios development and your site helped me so much, every tutorial is so well written and explained.

    Here is some extra promo codes I give you :

    A4XNWNRNKMJA
    XY46L6RMHYX6
    7MW6NMXAREXT
    HNHMHTR3LXEW
    AE7EX69PJK67
    codejunk
  • Thanks a lot for the mention! You guys are great! I got inspired from your previous reviews and hired a guy to write me some background music for my app :) This month's list is great - I already tested 2 of the games and they are so cool. Thanks and have a nice day!
    dchakarov
  • Hi Ray and the entire team. Although my app (Feed Browser) was not reviewed, I would like to say thanks for your complete team who made it possible to reach app-store. I am newbie to any kind of software development and it feels really nice to have an app in the app store. I was lucky to have your tutorials coming out at the right time for me (like the RSS reader tutorial inspired me to develop this app, then "How to Submit Your App to Apple: From No Account to App Store" came when I was just ready to submit the app and also came in "How To Market and Promote Your Games and Apps" at exact time when needed). You guys are doing an awesome job. Thank you.
    shri

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