Apple’s App Store for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch is home to a plethora of puzzle games. Three of the top titles all support the popular OpenFeint social gaming network and were recently featured in OpenFeint’s “Free Game of the Day” program.
These three titles all sport top rank gameplay as well as great graphics and presentation. This makes them especially stand out amongst the multitude of App Store gaming options.
The Memory Matching Fun of DoubleTake
DoubleTake is puzzle game based on memory matching techniques. The title, developed by RetroDreamer, is still available as a free title for the iPhone and thus is a must download.
The gameplay involves tapping on squares each containing a certain shape. Gamers must match the same shape to score points and remove those shapes from the game board. Extra points are scored when stringing together multiple matches.
The game features four different modes. Sprint mode involves scoring as many matches during one minute which makes it perfect for a quick gaming break. Other modes include Timed, where the allotted time increases with each match. Survival mode which is like Timed mode, but substitutes “health” for time. Finally there is a basic mode where the gamer tries to match the whole board as fast as possible.
OpenFeint achievements and leaderboards simply add to the game’s replayability. DoubleTake is another great title from RetroDreamer who could become an American version of Donut Games, the Swedish casual game giant.
Puzzle Column Action with Kascade
Kascade is a column clearing title from developer, myCodeStudio. The game plays like a version of Connect 4 on steroids with sharp graphics and sound.
Kascade’s two game modes each require the user to match any three (or more) blocks of the same color. Classic mode requires the gameboard to be fully cleared, while the longer-lasting Columns mode adds new blocks whenever a full column is removed.
The game has over 50 OpenFeint achievements as well as its own leaderboards in addition to the ones provided by OpenFeint. This is a top title sure to please fans of color matching puzzlers.
The Beautiful Shape Matching of Rune Trails
Rune Trails is a simply beautiful tile matching game developed by Argentinian mobile development house, Quadion Touch. The graphics are near the top as far as iPhone gaming is concerned with exquisitely-designed tiles and gameboards.
The game requires the user to match five runes together to clear them from the gameboard while earning points. After each move, more tiles are added to the board. The game ends when the gameboard is completely filled. Certain color-coded tiles add to the strategy by offering score combos or freezing the addition of new tiles for a few turns.
The game’s various modes include a time mode as well as varying the amount of color-coded tiles, which make the gameplay easier. Rune Trails also features OpenFeint integration and a nice set of achievements as well as leaderboards. Its addictive gameplay and quality graphics make it one of the top iPhone puzzle games, just like DoubleTake and Kascade.
Shaun White Snowboarding Origins for the iPhone
To snowboarding fans, Shaun White is arguably the biggest household name in the sport. His success in the Winter Olympics and the Winter X-Games has led to both massive popularity and his name on a snowboarding videogame series.
The iPhone version of the Shaun White Snowboarding series allows fans to race down the slopes, busting a few tricks and earning points along the way. Support for the iPhone’s OpenFeint social gaming network only enhances the title’s replayability.
- Shaun White Snowboarding Origins for the iPhone Features
- Four Different Locations (Chile, Japan, Alaska, Spain)
- Various Tricks and Combos (Grinds, Grabs, Flips, Turns)
- Free Mode or Challenge Mode
- OpenFeint Social Network Support (Achievements, Leaderboards)
- Accelerometer-based Steering
Snowboarding Tricks, Flips and Grinds
Developed by Advanced Mobile Applications and published by UbiSoft, Snowboarding Origins features both great graphics and tight control, which nicely leverages the iPhone’s accelerometer. While the graphics aren’t the equal of the console versions of the Shaun White series, or even Bode Miller Alpine Skiing for the PS2, they work well for the iPhone.
The ultimate goal of Shaun White Snowboarding Origins is racking up points on the slopes at one of the game’s four locations. Points are earned by completing various tricks, with bonuses awarded for stringing together different tricks into combos.
Both a virtual directional controller and a snowboard are overlaid on top of the screen to accomplish tricks. The directional controller works for flips and turns, while tapping the snowboard performs a grab. There is also a boost icon to gain extra speed and air time.
The iPhone’s accelerometer is used for both steering throughout the course and also to keep the snowboarder’s balance during a grind. Each course in the game features a nice array of rails to perform grinds and ramps to gain air time for flips and turns.
Support for the OpenFeint Social Gaming Network
Shaun White Snowboarding Origins supports the iPhone’s OpenFeint social gaming network which allows gamers to earn achievements and check their best score on the online leaderboards for the game. It is also possible to challenge ghosts of their OpenFeint friends’ best runs, or even the best players on the network.
Support for OpenFeint adds greatly to the replayability of Shaun White and more and more games are starting to support this relatively new social network for iPhone and iPod Touch gaming.
Snowboarding Origins is a great little winter sports game for the iPhone. While it doesn’t equal the best games of the genre on the console, it’s a great way to get some Winter Olympic fun going at the App Store.