Friday, January 30, 2009

ITouch Games Review

This is a short commentary on using the iTouch as a portable game
system, it is not comprehensive. Keep in mind that I have only had the
system since Christmas :) This is based on what I have played, your
mileage may vary. One problem the Touch has, is that the battery life
is fairly short. I usually have to charge at least once a day. In
comparison, the PSP and DS would make it through much longer gaming
stretches. On the upside, many of the games for the Touch are more
casual and are meant to be played in small bursts rather than marathon
sessions. Also, for good or bad, the Touch has basically one control,
the touchscreen. Yes, I know it has an accelerometer, usually using
this in a game just annoys me and feels like a gimmick. Fortunately
the touchscreen is very responsive and works well for many games.

On to the games:

TapDefense (Free) - A decent Tower Defense Game.

Topple (Free) - It is a game kind of like Jenga with different shaped
blocks that you try to balance. Fun.

Labyrinth LT (Free) - Try to get a marble from one point to another
without falling in holes along the way. Control the marble by tilting
the Touch. I got bored pretty quickly with this one.

CrystalDef Lite (Free) - Tower Defense Game, I haven't played much but
it looks pretty good.

Frotz (Free) - Play text adventures like Zork where all interaction is
through typed commands. Comes with a selection of good games and I
found it fun. You can download more games from within the game.

FieldRunners - Tower Defense Game. Pretty Basic but a lot of fun.
Good graphics and sound. Good controls.

Reign - RPG/Strategy. I want to like this one, but every time I play
it, I get frustrated with the controls.

Enigmo - Weird Game, but fun. Reminds me of Rube Goldburg type
machines. You need to get dripping water into an flask by using
various tools.

Dr. Awesome - Remember Qix? Fun and cheap. Has some pretty nice
graphics but the game play gets a little repetitive. Basically you are
a surgeon closing off portions of the infection without getting hit by
the nastiness.

7Cites TD - A Very Fun Tower Defense Game. Adds a little variety to
tower defense with tower upgrades and experience points for new tower
abilities. Well thought out controls.

Tiki Towers - World of Goo Clone. Build structures to get your
monkeys to safety. Fun so far but WoG is better! :)

Aurora Feint II (Arena) - Puzzle Quest/Bejeweled type game.
Interesting game but a little hard to get into. Does not quite capture
the fun I experienced with Puzzle Quest.

Chicktionary $1.99 - Fun Word Game. Find different word in the 7
letters you are given. Lots of nice little touches like,
achievements, good graphics, and quick gameplay.

Drop7 $0.99 - Fun Bejeweled game with numbers. This game is so simple
but very hard to put down!!! Well worth the buck.

More to come as the days go by...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

iTouch Apps

Random musings about the Apple iTouch:

iTouch apps I have so far: (* denotes free)

*eReader - Excellent eBook reader (the Touch is a great ebook reader)
*Stanza - Very good eBook Reader
*Twitterrific - Manage Twitter account, it was free. They have a
version without ads for pay.
*Flickster - Movie Showtimes (might get rid of this, I think it duplicates i.TV)
*Remote - Control iTunes on your PC (haven't tried it yet)
*Shazam - Record and identify songs (you might get more use out of
this since you have a built-in mic)
*Google Earth - nifty
*i.TV - TV/Movie Guide - does NetFlix, Tivo (ad supported, I like it so far)
*PhoneFlix - mange Netflix Queue (might be replaced by i.TV)
*Ping Lite - useful for network diagnostics
*Watchmen - Loads of info & trailers for the movie
*SaiSuke Free - Calendar replacement that syncs with Google (free
version does 7 days)
*1337pwn - XBox Live friend list (slow but kind of fun)
*IGN - Game reviews
*Wathchmen - Info and clips of the movie
SplashID - Password Database Program (syncs to a desktop version)
Wikipanion - Reformats and allows offline viewing of Wikipedia articles
Photogene - Crop and simple photo editing
Converter - Measurement conversion (nice and simple)
HanDbase - Database Program (syncs to a desktop version, supports CSV/PDB files)
Brushes - Basic drawing program (sometimes tough to adjust the sliders
but it is a nice and simple app)
Take A Note - Text/Draw/Record notes and lets you share them with a PC
(I used this to get my Palm Memos copied over)
Air Sharing - Lets you view a variety of files and use your Touch like
a Flash Drive
Score - Keep scores for up to six players in any type of game
iSSH - SSH client
Toodledo - Task Manager (web sync)

*TapDefense - Tower Defense Game
*Topple - Game like Jenga
*Labyrinth Lite - Marble Moving Game
*CrystalDef Lite - Tower Defense Game
*Frotz - Text adventures like Zork
*Labryinth LE - Marble rolling
FieldRunners - Tower Defense Game
Reign - RPG/Strategy
Enigmo - Weird Game, but fun
Dr. Awesome - Remember Qix? Fun and cheap.
7Cites TD - Very Fun Tower Defense Game
Tiki Towers - World of Goo Clone?
Aurora Feint II (Arena) - Puzzle Quest/Bejeweled type game

*Lightsaber - Motion active lightsaber
*Flashlight - White Screen
*Backgrounds - Good background downloader (ad supported)
*PktSounds - A variety of sounds (sounds are soft when playing through
the speaker)
iFart - Gotta have fart sounds
MachDice - Die roller

I Want to look closer at these things:

Pocket Informant - calendar replacement & google sync
VNC?/Remote Desktop
MazeFinger (free)
Spore Origins
Pandora Radio
Fring - (trying today!)
Line Rider iRide
Manifesto (free?)
omz:software Newsstand
LateNiteSoft Sketches
Tap Tap Revenge (free)

AirCurve - (Interesting speaker enhancement gizmo?)
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7 $125-220 (Headphones)

More to come as I continue to explore this great little device!

Thursday, January 08, 2009

iTouch First Impressions

Since my wonderful wife got me an iTouch for Christmas I am going
through the process of replacing my Palm TX as my main device. So far
the Touch has really impressed me.

Things I miss:
Datebk5 - I have yet to be able to get my Calender in some form on the
Touch. I wish it would support Google Calendars!!!
PDA Cookbook - I haven't found a compelling replacement yet.
DragonEdit - Editing my web site offline and then uploading it later
when I am connected is probably a no-go on the Touch.
Connection to my Bluetooth GPS (I haven't looked to see if there are
Wireless GPS units yet)

Things I don't miss:
*Palm Resets*
Hacks to make the OS work the way it should!

Things that are much better on the Touch:
Web Browsing
Speed & Simplicity
Watching Videos and playing music
eReading - This rivals the Zodiac for reading eBooks!

Things they could improve:
Battery Life

More on this as I continue my transition.