It’s a big week in the iTunes App Store for gaming. First up, we have Rovio Mobile’s long anticipated follow-up to Angry Birds, the first new game it has made since 2009: Amazing Alex. It’s a game that features physics and intricate puzzles, and packs more than 100 levels at the start. Following that is Tiny Wings 2.0, a new update/sequel to the game that, for a time, bested Angry Birds in the App Store. Finally, there’s aquatic-blasting Fishing Joy II, a game that has players endeavoring to zap fish with a gun to catch them, and one in which choosing the right tool for the job is key.
Amazing Alex (iPhone, iPad) $0.99
Angry Birds maker Rovio Mobile’s newest intellectual property, Amazing Alex, is finally available, combining the physics puzzles the developer has come to be known for with Rube Goldberg-type machines that players construct, piece by piece. Each puzzle has a goal players need to meet, like knocking books off a shelf or a ball into a basket. You’ll need to add components to each machine in order to make sure everything works correctly.
Each of Amazing Alex’s 100 levels includes three stars that players need to try to snag with the moving parts of each machine in order to get the best scores. Amazing Alex also includes Retina display support on the iPhone 4, 4S and iPad 2, and you can also create your own levels and share them with the community of Amazing Alex players, or download player-created levels to test your skills.
Tiny Wings 2.0 (iPhone, iPad) $2.99
The sequel to the super-popular hill-ramping endless runner Tiny Wings is actually an update to the original game – which means if you already own Tiny Wings (and you should), you get the new game not as a new app, but just by updating your old one. And there’s good news if you’re an iPad owner, because Tiny Wings 2.0 also has a proper, Retina-enabled iPad version just for you.
In terms of gameplay, Tiny Wings 2.0 adds a second chapter to the game that changes the terms of how you play. In the first chapter of the game, players help a flightless bird gain altitude by skiing down hills and launching up their slopes. In Chapter 2, things get escalated, with players racing against other birds in an attempt to get to the end of each stage fastest. Where Tiny Wings was originally about finesse, the second chapter focuses on speed, changing the game. Best of all, the update is free.
Fishing Joy II (iPhone, iPad) $0.99
At its heart, Fishing Joy II is actually a turret game. You man a big laser gun that’s used to incapacitate fish and capture them. The turret packs a number of weapons in it, each suited to a different size of fish, and each requiring a different amount of “coins” to fire. The strategy comes from trying to aim and hit fish with the proper weapons to earn more coins than you spend to avoid running out of ammo.
Fishing Joy II includes two undersea areas to explore, and two more that will be available sometime in the future through updates. It also includes features that let you snap photos during the game and share them on Facebook and Twitter, and you can purchase more ammo through the in-game store with in-app purchases.