Tag Archives: launches

Valiant Hearts: The Great War Launches on iOS

valiant hearts 650

Ubisoft has announced the launch of Valiant Hearts: The Great War on iOS devices. Developed by Ubisoft Montpellier, the app takes players to the era of World War I, and follows a group of characters working to escape or at least survive the war. The experience is technically categorized as a puzzle adventure game, but it can be just as easily described as an interactive comic book or graphic novel, with its heavy focus on emotional storytelling and impactful artwork.

In each environment in the game, users tap and swipe on the screen to control their current character’s movement. Prompts appear on top of key items, people to talk to, or items to pick up or otherwise interact with. Users then tap on the item or replicate the swiping motion that appears on screen to complete tasks, from removing a blockade or throwing a grenade to turning a crank or climbing a ladder. Each action advances the linear storyline in some (sometimes only small) way. To put it another way, each gameplay sequence leads players to the next storytelling moment that pushes the overall saga forward.

While the storyline here is fictitious, textbook entries appear throughout the experience for players to learn more about the real history of the war and world at the time. This historical content comes along with pictures, and can be shared with friends via Facebook and Twitter. Screenshots are also generated automatically when users pause the game, and can be shared to Facebook. Finally, Game Center support allows players to receive achievements as they play.

Valiant Hearts: The Great War is available to download for $ 4.99 on iOS. The game offers an episodic format (four episodes in total), with additional episodes available via in-app purchase for $ 3.99 each. A limited time bundle offers episodes 2-4 at a single price of $ 6.99.


Inside Mobile Apps

Valiant Hearts: The Great War Launches on iOS

valiant hearts 650

Ubisoft has announced the launch of Valiant Hearts: The Great War on iOS devices. Developed by Ubisoft Montpellier, the app takes players to the era of World War I, and follows a group of characters working to escape or at least survive the war. The experience is technically categorized as a puzzle adventure game, but it can be just as easily described as an interactive comic book or graphic novel, with its heavy focus on emotional storytelling and impactful artwork.

In each environment in the game, users tap and swipe on the screen to control their current character’s movement. Prompts appear on top of key items, people to talk to, or items to pick up or otherwise interact with. Users then tap on the item or replicate the swiping motion that appears on screen to complete tasks, from removing a blockade or throwing a grenade to turning a crank or climbing a ladder. Each action advances the linear storyline in some (sometimes only small) way. To put it another way, each gameplay sequence leads players to the next storytelling moment that pushes the overall saga forward.

While the storyline here is fictitious, textbook entries appear throughout the experience for players to learn more about the real history of the war and world at the time. This historical content comes along with pictures, and can be shared with friends via Facebook and Twitter. Screenshots are also generated automatically when users pause the game, and can be shared to Facebook. Finally, Game Center support allows players to receive achievements as they play.

Valiant Hearts: The Great War is available to download for $ 4.99 on iOS. The game offers an episodic format (four episodes in total), with additional episodes available via in-app purchase for $ 3.99 each. A limited time bundle offers episodes 2-4 at a single price of $ 6.99.


Inside Mobile Apps

Zynga’s NFL Showdown Launches on iOS, Android

NFL Showdown 650
Zynga has announced the launch of NFL Showdown on iOS and Android devices. The game is the first release under the company’s Zynga Sports 365 multi-game brand, and allows users to manage their own NFL team with the ultimate goal of winning the Super Bowl. Via partnerships with the NFL and NFL Players Inc., the game contains real NFL teams and athlete names for an authentic experience.

In NFL Showdown, players begin by choosing the team they’d like to manage. From there, they’re given one million dollars to create the best team possible. Users start with a complete team of players, but can purchase free agents from other players in the live auction house, or can list their own players for sale. Each player has his own stats, and players on the roster can be swapped out for others as gamers see fit. Along the way, players’ contracts will come up for renewal, and users must keep track of player salaries as well.

photo 1Players are also helped out along the way by an “Advisors Checklist,” which contains tasks to complete and rewards players with items (like more money, among others) for actually completing them.

Players are placed in a league, playing one game every day over a season that lasts 21 days. These 32-team leagues see players going head-to-head with real-world opponents. If players make the playoffs of the current league, they’ll advance their overall league level. These games take place at real-world scheduled times, so users are encouraged to come back to the game to watch them take place.

While an overall team rating is important, player confidence also impacts the team’s success, and introduces one of many premium currencies to the game, as users can purchase confidence boosts for their players (these can also be earned for free from friends).

Outside of leagues, users can complete practice events to train their players. These practice events include running drills, scrimmages and weightlifting exercises, and each take time to complete. They also drain some of the players’ energy, which recharges automatically over time, or can be recharged instantly with energy boosts (these too can be purchased in the store).

Users can wait for the practice events to complete automatically, or spend premium currency to finish them instantly. Each individual team player levels up on their own, and earns their own skill points. These points can be auto-assigned, or spent manually in a variety of categories, including grip, fitness, awareness, speed, receiving and more.

photo 2Between games, players can change their overall strategy, deciding how many interceptions to allow before benching their quarterback, for instance. This also includes choosing base offensive and defensive strategies, depending on the strength of a team’s players. That is, the game may suggest a strategy that takes advantage of high-rated wide receivers, if the team has them. If not, players may be encouraged to focus on plays that capitalize on great tight ends, and so on.

“With Zynga Sports 365, we are reimagining what a 21st century sports franchise looks like on mobile. We are developing sports games with the right level of control, community and competition that fit the mobile lifestyle of today’s consumer,” said Mike Taramykin, vice president of Zynga Sports 365, in a company statement.

“At Zynga, we have teams with deep experience developing high-quality sports franchises. With NFL Showdown, we are marrying our social gaming expertise with the NFL and NFL Players Inc.’s world class brands to provide football fans with compelling experiences that fit into their everyday lives and let them engage with the NFL in a way they never have before.”

NFL Showdown is available to download for free on iTunes and Google Play. The game will come to Windows phones and tablets, as well as Facebook, in the future. The game offers cross-platform support via Facebook Connect, allowing users to take their team with them across devices.

Another Zynga Sports 365 game was announced in early August, and will “bring the world of Tiger Woods golf to life for consumers.” The first game in this Tiger Woods partnership is in development for a mobile release in 2015.


Inside Mobile Apps

Microsoft launches the (Miracast) HD-10 Screen Sharing for Lumia

Published by at 10:23 UTC, September 4th 2014

Also launched at IFA 2014 by Microsoft was the HD-10, a Screen Sharing accessory for Lumia devices. Essentially a HDMI-connected Miracast dongle, this allows casting of screens and video streams to any suitable digital screen.

Microsoft HD-10

From the press release and data sheet:

Microsoft Screen Sharing For Lumia Phones lets people simply beam content from their smartphone to a HDMI-connected screen like a TV, and enjoy their smartphone content on a larger screen, making it perfect for reliving memories with friends and family, or for sharing presentations at work. 

Screen Sharing is designed for people who enjoy a lot of content on their phones – be it photos, videos, music, premium streaming movies, games, internet – and would like a simple, hassle-free way to get that same content onto a big screen for better viewing or for sharing with others.

With the smooth mirroring of everything on the phone on to a big screen, it can also be used for work. With a simple tap, people can work with documents and presentations and share them with a group. 

The set-up process is interesting here, with a ‘coaster’ that comes with the dongle and which is NFC enabled, containing the ID of the dongle. So, on Lumia phones you just tap the coaster and you’re paired and set-up and ready to ‘share’/cast.

In practice, there are bound to be some latency issues – the datasheet does admit that action games won’t provide a very good experience because of these delays.

The HD-10 is expected to be available in September 2014, and available from EUR 79 / USD 79.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions

    • Diameter: 80 mm
    • Thickness: 21 mm
    • Weight: 115 g
  • Connectivity

    • Other wireless connectivity: Screen projection, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Miracast
    • Charging connectors: Micro-USB 
    • AV connectors: HDMI-A 
    • NFC: Connecting 
    • Wi-Fi: WLAN IEEE 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct
  • Usage

    • Video resolution: up to 1080p (Full HD, 1920 x 1080) 
    • LED indicators: Power on indicator 
  • Audio

    • Audio features: Up to LPCM 5.1 surround sound 

As usual, there’s a promo video (rather concentrating on what you can’t do, rather than what you can do, but….!)

Filed: > >

Platforms: Windows Phone 8
Categories: Hardware
 

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All About Windows Phone

Microsoft launches the (Miracast) HD-10 Screen Sharing for Lumia

Published by at 10:23 UTC, September 4th 2014

Also launched at IFA 2014 by Microsoft was the HD-10, a Screen Sharing accessory for Lumia devices. Essentially a HDMI-connected Miracast dongle, this allows casting of screens and video streams to any suitable digital screen.

Microsoft HD-10

From the press release and data sheet:

Microsoft Screen Sharing For Lumia Phones lets people simply beam content from their smartphone to a HDMI-connected screen like a TV, and enjoy their smartphone content on a larger screen, making it perfect for reliving memories with friends and family, or for sharing presentations at work. 

Screen Sharing is designed for people who enjoy a lot of content on their phones – be it photos, videos, music, premium streaming movies, games, internet – and would like a simple, hassle-free way to get that same content onto a big screen for better viewing or for sharing with others.

With the smooth mirroring of everything on the phone on to a big screen, it can also be used for work. With a simple tap, people can work with documents and presentations and share them with a group. 

The set-up process is interesting here, with a ‘coaster’ that comes with the dongle and which is NFC enabled, containing the ID of the dongle. So, on Lumia phones you just tap the coaster and you’re paired and set-up and ready to ‘share’/cast.

In practice, there are bound to be some latency issues – the datasheet does admit that action games won’t provide a very good experience because of these delays.

The HD-10 is expected to be available in September 2014, and available from EUR 79 / USD 79.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions

    • Diameter: 80 mm
    • Thickness: 21 mm
    • Weight: 115 g
  • Connectivity

    • Other wireless connectivity: Screen projection, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Miracast
    • Charging connectors: Micro-USB 
    • AV connectors: HDMI-A 
    • NFC: Connecting 
    • Wi-Fi: WLAN IEEE 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct
  • Usage

    • Video resolution: up to 1080p (Full HD, 1920 x 1080) 
    • LED indicators: Power on indicator 
  • Audio

    • Audio features: Up to LPCM 5.1 surround sound 

As usual, there’s a promo video (rather concentrating on what you can’t do, rather than what you can do, but….!)

Filed: > >

Platforms: Windows Phone 8
Categories: Hardware
 

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.


All About Windows Phone

Zynga’s NFL Showdown Launches on iOS, Android

NFL Showdown 650
Zynga has announced the launch of NFL Showdown on iOS and Android devices. The game is the first release under the company’s Zynga Sports 365 multi-game brand, and allows users to manage their own NFL team with the ultimate goal of winning the Super Bowl. Via partnerships with the NFL and NFL Players Inc., the game contains real NFL teams and athlete names for an authentic experience.

In NFL Showdown, players begin by choosing the team they’d like to manage. From there, they’re given one million dollars to create the best team possible. Users start with a complete team of players, but can purchase free agents from other players in the live auction house, or can list their own players for sale. Each player has his own stats, and players on the roster can be swapped out for others as gamers see fit. Along the way, players’ contracts will come up for renewal, and users must keep track of player salaries as well.

photo 1Players are also helped out along the way by an “Advisors Checklist,” which contains tasks to complete and rewards players with items (like more money, among others) for actually completing them.

Players are placed in a league, playing one game every day over a season that lasts 21 days. These 32-team leagues see players going head-to-head with real-world opponents. If players make the playoffs of the current league, they’ll advance their overall league level. These games take place at real-world scheduled times, so users are encouraged to come back to the game to watch them take place.

While an overall team rating is important, player confidence also impacts the team’s success, and introduces one of many premium currencies to the game, as users can purchase confidence boosts for their players (these can also be earned for free from friends).

Outside of leagues, users can complete practice events to train their players. These practice events include running drills, scrimmages and weightlifting exercises, and each take time to complete. They also drain some of the players’ energy, which recharges automatically over time, or can be recharged instantly with energy boosts (these too can be purchased in the store).

Users can wait for the practice events to complete automatically, or spend premium currency to finish them instantly. Each individual team player levels up on their own, and earns their own skill points. These points can be auto-assigned, or spent manually in a variety of categories, including grip, fitness, awareness, speed, receiving and more.

photo 2Between games, players can change their overall strategy, deciding how many interceptions to allow before benching their quarterback, for instance. This also includes choosing base offensive and defensive strategies, depending on the strength of a team’s players. That is, the game may suggest a strategy that takes advantage of high-rated wide receivers, if the team has them. If not, players may be encouraged to focus on plays that capitalize on great tight ends, and so on.

“With Zynga Sports 365, we are reimagining what a 21st century sports franchise looks like on mobile. We are developing sports games with the right level of control, community and competition that fit the mobile lifestyle of today’s consumer,” said Mike Taramykin, vice president of Zynga Sports 365, in a company statement.

“At Zynga, we have teams with deep experience developing high-quality sports franchises. With NFL Showdown, we are marrying our social gaming expertise with the NFL and NFL Players Inc.’s world class brands to provide football fans with compelling experiences that fit into their everyday lives and let them engage with the NFL in a way they never have before.”

NFL Showdown is available to download for free on iTunes and Google Play. The game will come to Windows phones and tablets, as well as Facebook, in the future. The game offers cross-platform support via Facebook Connect, allowing users to take their team with them across devices.

Another Zynga Sports 365 game was announced in early August, and will “bring the world of Tiger Woods golf to life for consumers.” The first game in this Tiger Woods partnership is in development for a mobile release in 2015.


Inside Mobile Apps

King Launches Diamond Digger Saga on iOS, Android

diamond digger saga 650Social and mobile game company King has announced the launch of Diamond Digger Saga on mobile devices. The match-three game was originally released on Facebook earlier this year, and challenges players to dig their way into the ground, spreading water through their created tunnels to complete quests. The game offers cross-platform support, allowing existing Facebook players to connect to their accounts and begin playing where they left off.

Each level of Diamond Digger Saga contains a move limit and a different goal. Some levels may ask players to simply clear enough gems to earn a large number of points, while others ask users to collect toys by clearing matches on top of toy-locked squares. Another level type sees users waking fireflies by touching them with water, but the gameplay is different from the company’s other titles (like Candy Crush Saga), in that players travel between multiple rooms and game boards in each level.

photoPlayers destroy gems by tapping on groups of three or more like-colored symbols. In doing so, they remove dirt from the screen. This dirt blocks the path of water throughout the level. Therefore, once it’s removed, the water flows into those new areas. Once the water hits an exit door somewhere in the stage, players move onto the next room or game board, even if they’ve yet to collect all of the toys, or clear all of the dirt from the current room.

Gamers earn two bonus moves for each room they clear, and will have access to additional power-ups and obstacles as they play. Some water doors may be locked with keys, for instance, requiring users to touch keys with water (typically in hard-to-reach locations) before the door can be opened. Powers include rockets that clear whole rows and/or columns of gems from the board, bombs that clear all symbols a particular color (a free version must be charged by clearing gems), TNT charges that clear one small section of gems from the board, and so on.

Players lose lives if they can’t complete a level’s requirements before running out of moves. Lives recharge automatically over time, or can be purchased with real money. Some power-ups are also premium items, and must be purchased with real money once the game’s free samples run out.

Social features allow users to compare their high scores against friends on each level, or send friends free lives to keep playing.

“Having already launched Diamond Digger Saga on Facebook, we’re so excited to be bringing this charming, yet challenging digger adventure to mobile devices,” says Tommy Palm, games guru at King, in a company statement. “We think players will love all aspects of this game, from the fun gameplay modes to the delightful characters, to the bright and colorful graphics.  We can’t wait for fans of our games to start their mobile digging!”

Diamond Digger Saga is available to download for free on iTunes and Google Play.


Inside Mobile Apps

Zynga’s NFL Showdown Launches on iOS, Android

NFL Showdown 650
Zynga has announced the launch of NFL Showdown on iOS and Android devices. The game is the first release under the company’s Zynga Sports 365 multi-game brand, and allows users to manage their own NFL team with the ultimate goal of winning the Super Bowl. Via partnerships with the NFL and NFL Players Inc., the game contains real NFL teams and athlete names for an authentic experience.

In NFL Showdown, players begin by choosing the team they’d like to manage. From there, they’re given one million dollars to create the best team possible. Users start with a complete team of players, but can purchase free agents from other players in the live auction house, or can list their own players for sale. Each player has his own stats, and players on the roster can be swapped out for others as gamers see fit. Along the way, players’ contracts will come up for renewal, and users must keep track of player salaries as well.

photo 1Players are also helped out along the way by an “Advisors Checklist,” which contains tasks to complete and rewards players with items (like more money, among others) for actually completing them.

Players are placed in a league, playing one game every day over a season that lasts 21 days. These 32-team leagues see players going head-to-head with real-world opponents. If players make the playoffs of the current league, they’ll advance their overall league level. These games take place at real-world scheduled times, so users are encouraged to come back to the game to watch them take place.

While an overall team rating is important, player confidence also impacts the team’s success, and introduces one of many premium currencies to the game, as users can purchase confidence boosts for their players (these can also be earned for free from friends).

Outside of leagues, users can complete practice events to train their players. These practice events include running drills, scrimmages and weightlifting exercises, and each take time to complete. They also drain some of the players’ energy, which recharges automatically over time, or can be recharged instantly with energy boosts (these too can be purchased in the store).

Users can wait for the practice events to complete automatically, or spend premium currency to finish them instantly. Each individual team player levels up on their own, and earns their own skill points. These points can be auto-assigned, or spent manually in a variety of categories, including grip, fitness, awareness, speed, receiving and more.

photo 2Between games, players can change their overall strategy, deciding how many interceptions to allow before benching their quarterback, for instance. This also includes choosing base offensive and defensive strategies, depending on the strength of a team’s players. That is, the game may suggest a strategy that takes advantage of high-rated wide receivers, if the team has them. If not, players may be encouraged to focus on plays that capitalize on great tight ends, and so on.

“With Zynga Sports 365, we are reimagining what a 21st century sports franchise looks like on mobile. We are developing sports games with the right level of control, community and competition that fit the mobile lifestyle of today’s consumer,” said Mike Taramykin, vice president of Zynga Sports 365, in a company statement.

“At Zynga, we have teams with deep experience developing high-quality sports franchises. With NFL Showdown, we are marrying our social gaming expertise with the NFL and NFL Players Inc.’s world class brands to provide football fans with compelling experiences that fit into their everyday lives and let them engage with the NFL in a way they never have before.”

NFL Showdown is available to download for free on iTunes and Google Play. The game will come to Windows phones and tablets, as well as Facebook, in the future. The game offers cross-platform support via Facebook Connect, allowing users to take their team with them across devices.

Another Zynga Sports 365 game was announced in early August, and will “bring the world of Tiger Woods golf to life for consumers.” The first game in this Tiger Woods partnership is in development for a mobile release in 2015.


Inside Mobile Apps

Microsoft launches the (Miracast) HD-10 Screen Sharing for Lumia

Published by at 10:23 UTC, September 4th 2014

Also launched at IFA 2014 by Microsoft was the HD-10, a Screen Sharing accessory for Lumia devices. Essentially a HDMI-connected Miracast dongle, this allows casting of screens and video streams to any suitable digital screen.

Microsoft HD-10

From the press release and data sheet:

Microsoft Screen Sharing For Lumia Phones lets people simply beam content from their smartphone to a HDMI-connected screen like a TV, and enjoy their smartphone content on a larger screen, making it perfect for reliving memories with friends and family, or for sharing presentations at work. 

Screen Sharing is designed for people who enjoy a lot of content on their phones – be it photos, videos, music, premium streaming movies, games, internet – and would like a simple, hassle-free way to get that same content onto a big screen for better viewing or for sharing with others.

With the smooth mirroring of everything on the phone on to a big screen, it can also be used for work. With a simple tap, people can work with documents and presentations and share them with a group. 

The set-up process is interesting here, with a ‘coaster’ that comes with the dongle and which is NFC enabled, containing the ID of the dongle. So, on Lumia phones you just tap the coaster and you’re paired and set-up and ready to ‘share’/cast.

In practice, there are bound to be some latency issues – the datasheet does admit that action games won’t provide a very good experience because of these delays.

The HD-10 is expected to be available in September 2014, and available from EUR 79 / USD 79.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions

    • Diameter: 80 mm
    • Thickness: 21 mm
    • Weight: 115 g
  • Connectivity

    • Other wireless connectivity: Screen projection, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Miracast
    • Charging connectors: Micro-USB 
    • AV connectors: HDMI-A 
    • NFC: Connecting 
    • Wi-Fi: WLAN IEEE 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct
  • Usage

    • Video resolution: up to 1080p (Full HD, 1920 x 1080) 
    • LED indicators: Power on indicator 
  • Audio

    • Audio features: Up to LPCM 5.1 surround sound 

As usual, there’s a promo video (rather concentrating on what you can’t do, rather than what you can do, but….!)

Filed: > >

Platforms: Windows Phone 8
Categories: Hardware
 

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.


All About Windows Phone

Microsoft launches the (Miracast) HD-10 Screen Sharing for Lumia

Published by at 10:23 UTC, September 4th 2014

Also launched at IFA 2014 by Microsoft was the HD-10, a Screen Sharing accessory for Lumia devices. Essentially a HDMI-connected Miracast dongle, this allows casting of screens and video streams to any suitable digital screen.

Microsoft HD-10

From the press release and data sheet:

Microsoft Screen Sharing For Lumia Phones lets people simply beam content from their smartphone to a HDMI-connected screen like a TV, and enjoy their smartphone content on a larger screen, making it perfect for reliving memories with friends and family, or for sharing presentations at work. 

Screen Sharing is designed for people who enjoy a lot of content on their phones – be it photos, videos, music, premium streaming movies, games, internet – and would like a simple, hassle-free way to get that same content onto a big screen for better viewing or for sharing with others.

With the smooth mirroring of everything on the phone on to a big screen, it can also be used for work. With a simple tap, people can work with documents and presentations and share them with a group. 

The set-up process is interesting here, with a ‘coaster’ that comes with the dongle and which is NFC enabled, containing the ID of the dongle. So, on Lumia phones you just tap the coaster and you’re paired and set-up and ready to ‘share’/cast.

In practice, there are bound to be some latency issues – the datasheet does admit that action games won’t provide a very good experience because of these delays.

The HD-10 is expected to be available in September 2014, and available from EUR 79 / USD 79.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions

    • Diameter: 80 mm
    • Thickness: 21 mm
    • Weight: 115 g
  • Connectivity

    • Other wireless connectivity: Screen projection, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Miracast
    • Charging connectors: Micro-USB 
    • AV connectors: HDMI-A 
    • NFC: Connecting 
    • Wi-Fi: WLAN IEEE 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct
  • Usage

    • Video resolution: up to 1080p (Full HD, 1920 x 1080) 
    • LED indicators: Power on indicator 
  • Audio

    • Audio features: Up to LPCM 5.1 surround sound 

As usual, there’s a promo video (rather concentrating on what you can’t do, rather than what you can do, but….!)

Filed: > >

Platforms: Windows Phone 8
Categories: Hardware
 

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.


All About Windows Phone