Best of 2012 Nominations...
Aww, poor little armadillo. Too heavy to fly because of that thick armor on your back? Don't worry, you're great at rolling, and we're sure that if you get enough speed going, you can jump really really high, which is pretty similar to flying. In a way. The mobile release of the browser game of the same name, Dillo Hills is a charming and rather engrossing game of quick reflexes and gradual mastery!
One of the early hits on the iTunes App Store and a strong leader in Android game sales, the Doodle Jump games quickly turned into the definition of a successful mobile game. As of the end of 2011, over 15 million copies of the arcade game have been sold across various marketplaces, and it has remained one of the best-selling iOS games since its launch. With such a simple premise and creative visuals, it's no wonder Doodle Jump has gained such enormous popularity. Now, with mobile markets still growing, Doodle Jump's various incarnations have spread to include NOOK and Kindle Fire!
It's escaping time! Flip's Escape is an arcade follow-up to The Last Rocket, an iOS puzzle game also by Shaun Inman. The goal is to fly as far as you can, passing light years of space in just a few seconds. Crash and you start back at the beginning, but not without earning some coinage and achievements in the process. One look at the clean pixel visuals and you might think you're in for an easy ride. But flight after flight, failure after failure, you'll realize you've got a lot of skills to sharpen before you get anywhere.
God of Blades is an endless running/combat game designed by White Whale Games. Instead of focusing on jumping around like a little grasshopper, you are given the ancient and epic powers of sword combat, dispatching foes by unleashing various swipes and abilities as you take on a stream of enemies who stand in your way. It's all about the artwork and aesthetic in God of Blades, and the development team absolutely nailed the look that will remind you of fantasy novels and prog rock album covers from the 1970s. Even if you weren't alive and kicking back then, everyone needs a little unabashed sword combat now and again!
Kung Fu FIGHT! is a non-stop jump and run arcade game from Nostatic Software, creator of Quiet, Please! It's a game where you fight the bad guys to save the girl, just like in the cheesy old movies and video games from yesteryear! Sporting a variety of obstacles and a number of ways to deal with them, you'll fight your way across dojo and village on your quest, and since Nostatic loves us so very much, there are plenty of unlockable trophies as well as checkpoints to record your progress. Hooray!
It may be One Epic Knight, but it's several hundred different runs. From Simutronics, the creator of the inverted defense game Tiny Heroes, this tongue-in-cheek third person running game puts you in the golden greaves of a knight destined to run through a dangerous dungeon time and time again. The place is filled with dangerous spikey things, broken floors, tricky stairs, cuboid blobs, and much more. It's an absolute riot to play, so taking a jog or two through the halls is definitely a good idea.
Paper Galaxy from Liquid Entertainment is an arcade game that's just about as charming as a game can be. Once upon a time there was a happy little blue-eyed moon named Luna. While momma Earth was snoozing, Luna caught sight of a beautiful space butterfly. As she followed it, she encountered some space dust that gave her a terrible case of the sneezies, propelling her off into the wild yonder. Now, lost in the cold blackness of space and far from her home, Luna needs to find her way back, navigating an array of planets, black holes, comets and other obstacles using little more than the power of her own sneezes.
Polara from Hope This Works Games is a jump and run mobile game with a little added color. Instead of simply hopping over gaps or testing your reflexes with split-second timing, you've also got to keep an eye out for an obstacle's color, switching your character's color to slip through each danger unharmed. Layered on top of that are some nice futuristic Tron-like visuals and a story that, while predictable, is actually kind of interesting in a semi-cheesy sci-fi sort of way!
New from Rocketcat Games, creator of Mage Gauntlet, Hook Champ, Super QuickHook, and Hook Worlds, Punch Quest is an endless running game built on the quest completing/loot gathering system found in games like Jetpack Joyride. Instead of flying around like a little beetle, though, you play as a well-muscled lad or lass who simply must punch everything in sight, from bats to skeletons, dinosaurs to priceless vases, all in the name of gathering coinage and upgrading your skills.
Surprised to see Rayman in a place like this? Time to reconfigure your expectations, as our limbless hero is making a run for the casual mobile market. Quite literally, too! Rayman Jungle Run from Pastagames brings the platform star to a new genre that feels quite at home on the iOS screen: endless running. Instead of randomly generated drab worlds, though, you can expect some startlingly lush visuals paired with challenges and abilities that gradually evolve as you play. It's such a good jump and run game, you'll probably wonder why more titles haven't adopted a similar layout!
If you mixed Robot Unicorn Attack with a great big helping of Jetpack Joyride and threw it all into the ocean, this incredibly colorful arcade game would jump up and smack you with a rainbow. Sea Stars gets your finger tapping to help these cute undersea creatures swim and jump past obstacles that would otherwise ruin their good time. Hothead Games made sure you wouldn't miss out on the fun by putting the app in every mobile marketplace. Just dive right into their vast ocean home so you can begin a journey that ends only when you put the app down.
Have you ever watched an Indiana Jones movie and thought "I could totally do all of that stuff. Easy!"? Well, thanks to Imangi Studios
, creators of Temple Run, you can give it a shot! Just don't expect hundreds of thousands of adulating fans, actual fortunes gained, or a fine battle-worn fedora to suddenly appear on your melon.
The darling little arcade flying game for iOS, Tiny Wings, has just gone through a metamorphosis, turning itself into twice the game it used to be and spawning a native iPad version in the process! Tiny Wings 2.0 is sort of a sequel to the original, but creator Andreas Illiger decided to release it as a free update instead of a standalone app, allowing owners of Tiny Wings to grab it for free. And like mama always said, free is better than fooling around with in-app purchases.
So, whales can't fly, right? Keep that in mind while playing Whale Trail, a colorful one button arcade "cave flying" game that has recently spread from iOS devices to include other mobile markets. Baron von Barry is chasing Willow the Whale, and in order to escape, she has to take to the skies, staying afloat by collecting bubbles scattered throughout the clouds. It's cute and colorful,
Oh no! The king of the realm needs you to save the princess from the evil clutches of the Dark Knight! Go figure, right? Wind-up Knight is a mobile run and jump adventure very similar to Canabalt HD except you get a fancy sword and armor to fight enemies while dodging traps to make your way to the princess. Convenient items in adventuring, yes, but it won't save you when the Dark Knight starts getting really serious about stopping you. A knight's mettle will never be more tested and neither shall your timing skills as pits, enemies, and environmental dangers stand in your way.