Archive for the ‘Apps’ Category

iPad Games

When it came to joining the ranks of tablet owners I’m sort of a late bloomer. After skipping the first two versions of the iPad, I’ve recently gotten a 64 GB wifi model. I have to say that this singular device and my iPhone 4s still amazes me. In retrospect it doesn’t make sense that I’d wait this long. Being in the IT profession you would think that I’d be an early adopter of these amazing products but I did hold off. The reason I did so on the phone was because a former employer had provided me with a company phone (BlackBerry). On the tablet side I just didn’t have a need for one. I wouldn’t say that need has changed; my iPad is provided by my current employer.

With the iPad I’ve been able to find it incredibly useful for research on the go. When I’ve got topics to research for my work I can easily pick up the iPad and find web sites, online books, videos, etc and some apps that enhances what I can do for work. It’s not all work and no play. I have been able to find some choice games that I’ve enjoyed and would like to post a few thoughts on them here.

Catan HD

This is a spectacular iPad game that’s a direct conversion from the award-winning board game original. In it you are in a race against your competitors to collect resources. Whichever dice number is rolled then a resource tile with that rolled number on it will provide a resource to the player that has a settlement on the tiles border. That player can then build a settlement or road or trade with his competitors to get the resources that he needs. This is very much a social game due to trading that’s absolutely necessary to win. With each map there is a victory point (VP) requirement to win and those VPs are acquired from settlement/city count, road length, development cards, etc. I can’t recommend this game enough whether it’s in board or tablet form.

Settlers of Catan – How to Play


This was one of the first games that I had purchased for the iPad. The reason why I did so was just to find something to get me started with a board game that’s been converted to the iPad. This is not a board game though as it’s a tile based game where each player lays out tiles based on what’s adjacent to what’s on the table. They can also lay down player markers to indicate that they’ll acquire points from cities, roads, fields or cloister. It sounds easy, but I’ve yet to place any higher than last. What I need to do is watch some videos of how to play on youtube. It’s still a game that I fire up with hopes to do better. Either I’m sadistic or just hopeful on doing better is a testament to how captivating this game can be.

How to Play: Carcassonne 

Small World

This game is fantastic! It’s a mixture of Risk and some form of fantasy where you get random races with a random trait each time you play. You take over segments of the map with the custom race that you’ve chosen and take points at the end of each of your turns to get points. At the end of several turns who has the most points accumulated wins the game. This is a game that I would love to get into but since it’s a 1v1 against the AI or another opponent it’s not one that I regularly return to.

Watch It Played – S03E01 – Small World – Introduction And Rules (skip to 3:24 mark) 


Being a deck-builder card game I wasn’t too sure how I would like Ascension. However, it came highly recommended from a few gamer podcast that I regularly listen to. So it was a purchase that I’ve originally made on my iPod Touch that was copied to the iPhone and then purchased again for the iPad. This is a game that I love for the short duration per game. Usually I’m playing against the difficult AI, but a few times I’ve gone against other players over the network. It’s just a really fun game that’s easy to pick up, play a full game and put down. As some pod-casters has joked about and I can attest to, this is a bathroom break game.

iReview: Ascension – Chronicle Of The Godslayer 

Elder Sign: Omens HD

Man, of late this game has gotten under my skin. It’s a game that I know nothing about and just dove into based on reviews from IOS board game sites. So after the purchase I tried learning by playing. Like Carcassonne I haven’t beaten this game yet, but it’s just incredibly engrossing that when I have some time to play something I find that more often than not I return to Elder Sign. From what I understand the conversion to digital has been incredibly accurate. As cool as that is what really gets me is the beautiful graphics and foreboding music.

Elder Sign: Omens Review

Ticket to Ride

Not only is the board game original a lot of fun, but this digital conversion makes it easier to get into due to the speediness of the setup and game play. Like Ascension I would also give this game a sub-category as a bathroom break game. When competing against the AI it’s a fast paced game and can be a challenge to win. Unlike other previously mentioned games where I haven’t done much better than last this is a game that I win enough times to keep me coming back for more.

Ticket to Ride for iPad

Groove Coaster

In a nutshell this is a rhythm game with a truly funky soundtrack. It’s a wonderful game that breaks away from the norm.

Groove Coaster – iPad 2 – US – HD Gameplay Trailer

Draw Something

This particular game seems to be the flavor of the week. As much as I wanted to avoid the game I was unable to and recently installed it. As I got into playing the game with friends on Facebook I found the results to be different and that depended on the opponent. Where some players drew actual images some drew words as their clue to the secret word. An example was a friend of mine who wrote, “mamma mia” and “dancing queen”. Naturally I guessed ABBA and was correct. This was a disappointing to me when my previous hard word for him was lawyer. To get him to guess I drew blind justice in a box, with a red X pointing to it, followed by a guy in a suit carrying a briefcase with a green check-mark to the guy. My friend guessed lawyer, and was right. Now, I have to come up with something clever to get him to guess Jeter (I think that I’ve got a plan).

Draw Something FREE iPad App Review 

Angry Birds Space HD

What more do I have to say to this game that most everyone should have some familiarity with.

IGN Reviews : Angry Birds Space