Category: Reviews

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Squarewords

SquareWords is a brand new game that has recently been released for the iOS platform. It’s a game similar to Words with Friends although instead of the game being based on Scrabble, SquareWords is more of a free-form crosswords multiplayer game where your goal is to make as many words as possible and get more points than your opponent.

How to play: Every round you’re basically given a few letters to play, some of them being random, and you have to play these letters in a crosswords square board trying to match up as many words as possible both horizontally and vertically. For every word that you make, you get a few points. You want to get as many points as possible and make more words than your opponent whose board you do not see. Partials of words don’t count, so for a word like “Caring” the word “Car” will not grant you any extra points.

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It’s a very fun and challenging game that can get addicting depending on who you’re playing against. This game is a lot harder than Words with Friends due to the fact that you’re given a number of random letters per round that you have to play, and most of the time you don’t know what to do with those letters initially. You’re also not able to see your opponent’s board, which is another reason why this game requires a lot of strategy and strong wordplay ability.

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Where would you place these two letters?

This game only recently came out a few days ago, and while testing the game out yesterday, there were 0 reviews and only around 3-4 ratings. Checking out the game now, there are 3 reviews and 17 ratings! That just goes to show how quickly a game can become popular through word of mouth. The game has a leaderboard for every language contained and it remains roughly the same today as it was yesterday:

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Overall this is a brand multiplayer new game that is both challenging and fun to play. The game has a lot intuitive features such as the ability of choosing whether to play against a human or a bot, leaderboards, and also easy registration. Unlike most other games where you have to have a username and password, all you do to register for SquareWords is enter a username and you’re all set to go.

You can download and play SquareWords by visiting SquareWords at the iTunes App Store.

Review Written on: 5/4/2014
Last updated on: 8/26/2016

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Sheep Shave and Sheep Shave Pro

Today we’re going to take a look at a brand new game available for mobile platforms called Sheep Shave. Sheep Shave is an arcade game where you shave sheep going down a conveyor belt and pick up bits of fluff that drop on the floor in order to gain bonus points. We’re going to play and review these aspects of the game: Gameplay, Features, Graphics, and sound.

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Gameplay 7/10:

The premise of the game is simple, a sheep appears and you have to swipe your fingers the direction that the arrow points to in order to shave the sheep and move onto the next one. You get 30 seconds to shave as much sheep as you can and earn the most points possible. For every successful shave you get a multiplier point and once you get enough multiplier points, your multiplier increases.

Each time you successful shave a sheep by swiping your fingers in the right direction, three pieces of wool drop to the ground. Each piece of wool is hard to pick up as you have to accurately tap on the small white ball on the bottom of the screen in order to get its benefits. Each picked up wool will give you points towards the Golden Sheep mode which is unlocked once you pick up enough wool balls. As a bonus, sometimes a wool ball will also give you extra multiplication points, score points, or extra time in seconds. In Golden Sheep mode, the amount of points you earn per shaving sheep is increased significantly.

If you make a mistake in shaving the sheep however or if you don’t accurately tap on the wool ball, you can either lose multiplier points or lose your multiplier completely, which is bad for your gameplay if you want to get the most points as possible. If you accidentally swipe in the wrong direction, your multiplier is reset to 1. If you misclick on a wool ball, that could make you lose time and if you don’t shave the current sheep in time, you lose multiplier points.

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The gameplay and rules makes complete sense but it’s way too simple and there’s not much variety from one round of playing to the next. It’s definitely fun to play at first, but it simply gets old and boring after a few games. It’s the same swiping then tapping, swiping then tapping, it’s repetition that doesn’t do much to make the game stand out as something people want to play over and over again.

Features 8/10:

This game features a full high score board which both the iOS and Android versions are connected to. It also has multiplayer functionality through Skillz which allows one player to play against another player online by comparing scores. This might be where the gameplay becomes more addicting as the ability to play against other players online is a fun feature to have.

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The high score and multiplayer features definitely add a lot of extra juice to the gameplay quality, but the gameplay is still the same from round to round even if these features did make it much more desireable to play those same rounds over and over.

Graphics 4/10:

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The graphics are very well drawn but there’s not really much of it to see. Even the main menu of the game has roughly the same exact graphics as the gamplaye itself only without the main menu text. There’s usually nothing wrong with the main menu having similar graphics to the rest of the game, but the game is less enjoyable because it’s the same graphics over and over again.

Overall there should be much more of these well drawn graphics throughout the game as well as more graphic special effects.

Sound 2/10:

Basically the only sounds you will hear in this entire game are the “Baa” sounds of the sheep and the two other sounds in this game, the conveyer belt noise and the electric shaver noise, but mostly the “Baa” of the sheep. There’s no music, no background noise, and no other sounds other than the three mentioned.

Background music can make a game more exciting, the lack of any kinds of fun sounds in Sheep Shave make it less fun to play and less enjoyable as well.

Overall score: 19/40

Overall the game is fun to play but could definitely use a lot of graphical and musical improvements.

Download the Pro iOS Version of Sheep Shave

There are also Android Play Store versions of Sheep Shave for Android users.

Review Written on: 5/14/2014
Last updated on: 8/26/2016

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Snap Lotto

Today we’re going to take a look at the Snap Lotto iOS app for iPhone and iPad. Snap Lotto is a brand new app released on May 7th, 2014, that is very similar to Snap Chat. The main difference between Snap Lotto and Snap Chat is that you don’t need an account to use Snap Lotto. This means that you can use Snap Lotto right away and take pictures, but it also means that you can’t have a contact list to share pictures with other people.

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Snap Lotto right now barely has anyone using it, so there were only six pictures shown and refreshing it by scrolling all the way up didn’t bring about any new pictures. Once the community grows I can imagine that refreshing Snap Lotto would bring about six or more new pictures, instead of simply showing the same pictures over and over again like it does right now.

It has a very simple interface and colorful interface with a few buttons. Pictures you haven’t seen yet appear blended in with one color, like the picture of the green man. If you tap and hold the picture, you can view it in its full and original color. Keep in mind though you can only view a picture once, so once you click and view it, the picture turns gray and that means you can no longer look at it. You can also ‘like’ a picture by tapping on the heart icon in the middle of the picture, or report it as inappropriate by tapping on the exclamation point in the bottom right corner.

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You can easily take a picture yourself to add to the Snap Lotto list by tapping on the camera button in the upper right hand corner. Once you take a picture it automatically adds it to your current list of pictures, and shows you a view count and heart count of your picture. The pictures are removed from public view within 24 hours.

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This is an awesome app idea where it brings random pictures from people all around the world and I definitely can’t wait when more people start using it and more pictures are shown. It’s just a great way to spend your time when you’re not doing anything else such as when you’re standing in line or when waiting for someone, you can view random pictures that people took online that same day or take some of your own pictures and show them to different people.

Overall it’s a great and creative app idea but at the moment it has a lack of users. It is quickly gaining momentum though with over 200+ downloads after the initial week of launch. 200+ downloads for an app may not seem like much, but it’s definitely a good start for a new up and coming social app.

You can download Snap Lotto at the iOS App Store.

Review Written on 5/17/2014
Last updated on 8/26/2016

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Hopping Bunny

Today we take a look a new game in the app store called Hopping Bunny. Hopping Bunny is a free to play fun and addicting arcade game where your goal is to score as many points as possible by tapping on green blocks one after another. We will review the game through the four basic gameplay criteria of: Gameplay, Features, Graphics, and Sounds.

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Gameplay:

There are three basic game modes of Survival, Time, and Distance. They are all very similar to one another. For Survival, your goal is to get as many points as you can without messing up. For Time, your goal is to hop 50 times in the shortest time possible, without messing up. Finally for the Distance game mode, your goal is to hop as many times as you can in 30 seconds without messing up.

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It’s all very fun and easy to do, however it does make the game limiting in the number of things you can do. It’s a really fun and addicting game where all you do is tap, and tap, and tap different blocks as they appear and try to complete the challenge of the game mode.

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This game is really addicting even though the gameplay concept is so simple. It’s basically tap as fast as you can, tapping each consecutive green block in the order that they appear, if you accidentally miss and tap on a blue block for example, you lose the round and your score is displayed. It’s a really addicting game, hard to stop. Very simple, yet addicting.

Gameplay Rating: 8/10

Features:

The main features of the game are that it has three game modes, and a high score system that works with Game Center. These are basic and nice features, what takes away from the app though are the excessive advertisements:

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The only reason the advertisements are here is for you to accidentally click on them. They pop up at the most unexpected moments such during the main menu screen of the game, and after every few rounds, an advertisement will randomly pop up. I honestly clicked on a few of these by mistake, the game is a tap-tap-tap kind of game, if you accidentally tap the water by mistake, and you tap the screen again, you’ll most likely click on an advertisement.

This advertisement method is brilliant in terms of earning revenue, but it’s very dishonest and a cheap method to have excessive advertisements and it’s generally frowned upon in the industry.

Only three game modes combined with excessive advertisements and the only good thing being Game Center high scores, makes for a low features rating.

Features Rating: 3/10

Graphics:

The game menu screens have good graphics, they are colorful, the buttons are centered, and the layouts are simple. These graphics make sense. The clouds are nice, the grass is nice, and the bunny mascot is very well rendered in the different screens.

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Step into playing the game itself however and the graphics become a different story. The main graphics of the gameplay are basically colored rectangular blocks with the only complicated drawing being the bunny feet. So for the different game menus, the graphics are excellent but for the gameplay itself, the graphics are horrible. It probably makes sense in a way though because the gameplay itself is very simple, but there’s too much a dramatic difference in the graphic qualities from screen to screen.

Graphics Rating: 5/10

Sounds:

The only sounds of the game are the spring noise from the jumping, the menu clicks, the gameover screen, and the winning screen. The sounds make sense though, and this game proves you don’t need music to have a good sounding game. Although it would probably be better with music, this game can definitely be played and enjoyed without it. There could also have been a much better selection of sounds used in the game too though.

Sounds Rating: 3/10

Overall Rating: 19/40

Overall it’s definitely an addicting game to play, that is why the gameplay reached such good scores. However, the limited game modes, excessive advertisements, inconsistent graphic quality, and lack of engaging sounds gives the game a lower score overall.

Come check out and download the game at: Hopping Bunny on iTunes

Review Written on: 5/20/2014
Last updated: 8/26/2016

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Start-Up Budget

Today we review the Start Up Budget iOS premium app by Thomsen Business Information. Even though this is a relatively new app, it already comes up as 6th place if you search for “Business Budget” in the iOS app store. Start Up Budget app is an app targeted at business owners, entrepreneurs, and start ups, to help them figure out how many sales they need in order to earn a certain amount of money.

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For example let’s say you’re a small business owner that sells vegetarian a vegetarian product, and you want to earn $50,000 a year in profit working on your business. You put that into the box in the app that says “Demand for profit per year.” Now you still have to pay off the mortgage on your house, on your car, phone bills, electric bills, etc, and let’s say that all adds up to $25,000 per year, so you place that into the “Fixed costs per year” box. You have 4 employees and you pay them each $5000 per year, so you put in $20,000 into the “Salary to employees per year” box.

Let’s say you sell this vegetarian product for $10 a piece, but it costs $5 each to make, you put this data into the “Sales price per unit sold” and “purchase price per unit sold” boxes respectively. Now you’re ready to calculate, hit the calculate button and it lets you know how many products you have to sell per year to make that profit.

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In my opinion this should already be very easy to calculate to begin with, but this app makes it easier for business owners and entrepeneurs who want to make things simpler for them

Even though this app is mainly targeted at business owners and entrepeneurs, you can also use this app if you are an employee working at a company and want to figure out how many hours a week you need to work, earning a fixed rate per hour, in order to meet certain quota.

It’s a similar process to the one above, except you must set the “Salary to employees per year” and “Purchase price per unit sold” to 0.

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So if you want to earn $20,000 in profit working an hourly wage of $20 per hour, and you also have to pay apartment rent that is $1000 per month, you have to work at least 5 hours a day for a total of 1600 hours a year.

This app makes it easy for anyone to calculate how many units they have to sell or how many hours they have to work in order to meet a certain quote. It’s definitely recommended if you want to download an app that lets you do this quickly, although as stated earlier, it is very easy to do these calculations yourself on paper.

If you would like to check out Start Up Budget and give it a try, you can download Start Up Budget at the Apple App Store.

This review was written on: 5/27/2014
Last updated: 8/26/2016