This week I tried out a few more of the free games featured on iTunes under “Best New Games,” and these are the two that I really enjoyed.
First we have the return of a fantastic game by VisualDreams, Slam Dunk Basketball 2, which was released last week on the 13th. If you’re not familiar with the game, Slam Dunk Basketball is a side-view game in which you drag your finger to aim the ball with a “shot line”, and score as many shots in a row in order to increase your score multiplier and achieve the goals the game sets for you.
Multiplayer has been added in this second installment. You can either play as an anonymous guest or sign in with your Facebook account. Unfortunately it seems like nobody wants to sign in with Facebook, so I end up playing with “guests” the majority of the time. I say it this way because there are a lot of accusations that the “guests” you play against are only CPU. As far as I know, VisualDreams is yet to confirm or deny these accusations, but it makes little difference to me. I have a lot of fun playing this game. At the end of each match, you get a chance to make a shot from insanely far away, and they call it the Last Shot. These Last Shots are what make this game so addicting. I find myself wanting to play “one more” just so I can sink one of these crazy shots.
There is in-game currency, which immediately opens up the opportunity for micro transactions. Although they’re a part of the game, they’re hardly ever required. In-game currency is used to purchase balls, entry to tournaments and as an ante for 1v1 matches. The good thing is that everything (except for the majority of the balls and some of the Scratchers that act as in-game lottery tickets) can, with time, be bought using your in-game winnings. Every time you play, you will spend money. But you always have a chance to win more than what you paid.
Slam Dunk Basketball 2 is a good game, has amazing basketball physics, and is one of the most well-done free games I’ve played in a while. Its multiplayer is a little sketchy at times, but that Last Shot is definitely what keeps me coming back for more.
The other really fun, but a little more mentally demanding game, is the new update to The Sandbox by PIXOWL INC. The Sandbox was actually released in early 2012, but due to its new update that offers a new campaign for free players, it’s been listed once again under “Best New Games.”
In The Sandbox, you are given tasks by a little deity. Little God gives you certain tasks to complete as he asks for some extra help in creating this cute, fun, pixelated world. Given a few elements of the earth to start with, you find ways to combine them in order to create new ones. With a handful of elements and plant seeds, you can complete the scenarios that little God assigns you to. There’s also a Free Mode, where you can do whatever your creative heart desires. It’s a lot of fun to combine different elements together, and try it all out with the different weather settings.
The game is free, though all but seven of the campaigns are for free players. These other campaigns, one given the title “Alien Invasion” (sounds awesome), cost $2.99 each. But don’t let this be a turnoff for you. This game is pretty fun.
I hope you enjoy these games as well, if you decide to check them out. In the case that these don’t interest you, I’d like to know what helps you waste time. What’s the most fun free game you own or have played on the iPhone lately?
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