Thursday, 10 June 2010


by The Critical Alien (on the iPad)

In my last blog post, I talked about trends. Well the iPad certainly is one. So I've got mine (have you?) and am now typing this up on it. I don't want to use this space to big this gadget up. I just want to make it clear that yours truly now owns one (and adores it).

The concept of an app (or widget in old speak) is nothing new. The rise of the iPhone in 2007 gave birth to, or at least propelled, the concept. However, no matter how good a game is on any smartphone I've always considered their screens to be too small to really get to grips with gaming on them. In my opinion, the iPad is much better suited for solid gaming. And so I've taken the leap into perhaps what is a new era, or at least platform, for computer games.

I'm going to talk about apps. Gaming apps. There are already some great ones available through Apple's App Store and so far I've been genuinely impressed, and surprised, by the calibre of these games. In this post, I'm going to list some favourites.

Angry Birds HD

Based on the popular iPhone app, this is an incredibly good little game. It's extremely addictive and based on a simple premise; to sling shoot birds via
multi-touch with the aim of penetrating defences and flattening those evil pigs. It's war against pigs and birds and about as brutal as any Wii game. To me, this game represents pure old school gaming goodness but, combined with the flawless tech that drives the iPad, it seems new to boot. This is pure gameplay combined with great, uniquely responsive touch technology on an incredible LED screen.

PInball HD

Another example of a gaming staple but one that greatly benefits from the merits of its platform. This is a brilliant pinball game and comes at a time where pinball as a gaming genre has surely been tilted out of the scope of consoles and the PC. It's really a perfect pinball game and better than any measly Xbox Live Arcade or PSN title you might find that boasts balls and the odd flipper.

Plants vs Zombies HD

A PC game brought to the iPad. This is a classy app and certainly got me reevaluating what ingredients are needed for a great game. It's just simple base defence in the form of plants you select and place in a yard repelling a zombie horde hell bent on busting your garden fence.

Worms HD

This is a games blog and no one reading it needs any introduction to
Worms. If you do, I suggest a visit back to Google. I was very impressed by this particular version of the Worms template. All the coolest weapons are here, along with multiplayer options and enough customisation options to keep teams varied. The key is the iPad's screen and, again, the intuitive nature of multi-touch for a game like this. A match made in heaven perhaps. WASD style is the way Worms evolved but I was able to very quickly adapt and now simply love playing Worms in this new way.

This is really just a little report on my current gaming time with the iPad. All I know is that I've been gaming on this more in the last week than I've been riding into sunsets on Red Dead Redemption. I've been iPadded.