Few websites have as much property to talk about iPhone games as Pocketgamer.co.uk. Today the site released its list of the best iPhone games of 2010. Check it out
In the last 12 months, the iPhone and iPod touch have gone from being interesting mobile gaming devices to being the leaders of the portable gaming block.
2010 will be remembered as the year that the iPhone and iPod touch became the center of the hype for handheld gaming.
Not only famous companies have collaborated with iOS, but also Apple itself has aggressively invested with new devices, features and services.
iPhone 4 and fourth generation iPod touch entered high-definition graphics territory, and Game Center – along with iOS' other achievement systems – represented a true rival to Sony and Nintendo.
What really transformed the iPhone and iPod touch platform so dramatically in 2010 was the amazing games. From heavyweight franchises like Grand Theft Auto and Assassin's Creed to casual surprises like Cute the rope and Fruit Ninja, 2010 was an exceptional year.
There are many great games and some great games had to be left out, but one thing is for sure: these ten titles deserve praise for their commitment to quality, innovation and pure fun.
Real Racing 2 – Firemint
Undoubtedly the best racing game for iPhone and iPod touch, Real Racing 2 sets a new standard with its superb design and many features.
It's the closest thing to an ultimate racing sim experience on iOS, offering incredible visual quality, solid gameplay, and affordability in a stylish package.
Technically speaking, it's an innovative title with races for up to 16 players online which also provide huge replay value. The vehicle driving differential ensures that each licensed vehicle is distinct from the others and the damage system further promotes the simulation factor.
What really impresses about Real Racing 2, though, is that the fun hasn't been lost on the spirit of simulation. Career mode is full of challenging events, online multiplayer is all fun, and there are a number of difficult achievements to unlock via Game Center.
A true benchmark for iPhone and iPod touch games, Real Racing 2 is not just one of the best games of 2010, but one of the best handheld games ever released.
NOVA 2: Vanguard Alliance Near Orbit – Gameloft
Unbeatable FPS for iPhone and iPod touch to date, NOVA 2 combines an exhilarating single-player campaign with a robust multiplayer experience in an unforgettable game for a handheld.
Contrary to the naysayers who claimed that FPS is not a good genre for iPhone, NOVA 2 showed polished and easy controls combined with fast gameplay. NOVA 2 builds on the series of improved controls over various FPS produced by Gameloft.
There's nothing on handheld that comes close to phenomenal multi-player and it's certainly the definitive title for online deathmatch.
The game wears these improvements on its sleeve, boasting rich, detailed graphics that rival the best PSP games. A clear leap from the first game and an evolution for the genre.
Infinity Blade – ChAIR / Epic Games
While Infinity Blade terrifies with the best graphics ever seen for iPhone and iPod touch, it is the game that has convinced us that it is among the best-selling titles of 2010. Long after the glamor of its graphics has become commonplace, the Simple game of swords, yet with just a few RPG elements will keep you playing.
The game is simple and its approach works – the gesture-based control scheme is surprisingly approachable and challenging, and the role-playing is deep enough to reward you for investing in your character, without overwhelming you with ridiculous stats and customizations.
It's this ideal combination of accessibility and depth that makes it one of the best of the year and a sign that things are happening.
Sentinel 3: Homeworld – Origin8
An example of tower defense, Sentinel 3: Homeworld has it all: a reasonable variety of defense at its disposal, a challenging difficulty level, and massive replay value.
Cleverly evolving with iconic elements of the genre rather than trying new features or confusing controls, this is “tower defense” done right.
Instead of just throwing a bunch of enemies at you and drastically increasing the difficulty, there's an emphasis on tactics and learning where to place turrets.
Strategy and how you spend money and experience gained from completed levels on new units and skills, this is the law of the game. These elements, combined together with various modes and OpenFeint integration, give Sentinel 3 infinite replayability and make it one of the most robust games of the year.
Chaos Rings – Media.Vision/Square Enix
Square Enix has built a reputation for developing quality RPGs and Chaos Rings lives up to that with an immersive battle system, depth of character customization, and an original cast of characters that come together in a bizarre story.
Going against the old school 2D RPG fad on handhelds, Chaos Rings is proof that not only can 3D epics be made, but how well they can be made.
Minor improvements to genre conventions, including turn-based battles and item-based abilities, ensure accessibility, while the game's original story and replay structure encourages.
Among the best RPGs for iPhone and iPod touch, it's easily one of the most important releases of the year.
Spider-Man: Mayhem Total – Gameloft
No other third-person action title delivers satisfying action with such variety. Through this beat'n up packed in 12 levels, you'll be swinging across the New York skyline, battling notable villains from the Spidey universe, climbing skyscrapers.
There's a nice mix of moves that are easy to pull off, which encourages you to vary your attacks and spice things up. It's a fast-paced action game ideal for any age with authentic cel-shaded graphics.
Cut the Rope – Zeptolab/Chillingo
A darling game with a “cute” charm that everyone loves. Cut the Rope is simple, smart and fantastically fun.
Guiding a piece of candy to a voracious little troll couldn't be more enjoyable, each level of tricks and traps providing a good balance of fun and challenging gameplay.
Variety is one of the game's strengths, with dozens of hazards to overcome and useful items to use from bubbles and sliding pulleys to rubber bands and hungry spiders.
New levels offered for free through updates makes Cut the Rope an endless game. Zeptolab Chillingo have created a wonderful game that deserves all the recognition among the best of 2010.
Carcassonne – The Coding Monkeys
For sheer design quality rather than game invention, Carcassonne earns a spot among the best of the iPhone and iPod touch this year.
In a year, when online multiplayer was a rare feature, Carcassonne exceeded expectations with its online game. Also, setting the benchmark for board games with such propriety – most continue to scoff at the notion of online multiplayer as developer Coding Monkeys continue to lavish this stellar adaptation with new features like voice chat and push notifications.
More impressive than the online multiplayer is its superb design, which perfectly captures the spirit of the physical board game. A remarkable game that will influence the conversions of boardgames for the iPhone and iPod touch.
Fruit Ninja – Half Brick
A simple idea polished into an excellent Arcade hit, Fruit Ninja is the most outstanding example of a casual game of the year.
Its simplicity makes it all accessible, but the attention to detail and commitment to expanding the game's modes and features set it well apart from other arcade titles.
Slicing banana, apple, mango, strawberry and other assorted fruits with one finger is easy and fun the wealth of gifts to unlock, achievements to earn, and achievement to unlock make you stuck in the game.
Strong production values also contribute to the game's high quality, guaranteeing it a spot as one of the best of the year.
Dark Nebula, Episode 2 – 1337 Game Design
Among the dozens and dozens of ball games on the iPhone and iPod touch scrolling platformer, Dark Nebula, Episode 2 surpasses them all with expertly designed levels and intuitive control.
Firstly, precise controls, proving that the accelerometer can be used to great effect in the hands of a talented game designer. Frustration never creeps in as a result – you're able to easily navigate the varying levels, collecting treasures and tackling a range of challenges from narrow passageways to aggressive enemies.
Dark Nebula, Episode 2 is an example of a platform game made for the iPhone and iPod touch, it's tuned in controls and challenging levels worthy of a place alongside the best of the year.