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Wild Blood leads iPhone Games of the Week

by Andrew Koziara

This turned out to be a pretty huge week for big game releases, and I feel bad for having to leave some games off of this list. We've got a great variety of titles though, from premium priced console-alikes to charming one dollar arcade games. Topping the list is Wild Blood, the latest epic from Gameloft. We've also got a new Square Enix RPG, an action-packed aerial combat game, and an Infinity Blade type game where you play as the Incredible Hulk. Here are this week's top iPhone games!

Wild Blood ($6.99)

So, as a new Gameloft game, you're probably wondering what big console game is being cloned here. The answer? Well, I'm not really sure. Primarily, it's a God of War/Devil May Cry style beat-em up, but it takes elements from several other titles as well, from Darksiders to Too Human. It's all about a re-imagined story of King Arthur and Lancelot. Arthur has gone mad with jealousy due to Lancelot romancing his wife, Queen Guinevere, and his sister Morgana Le Fey tricks him into unleashing the demonic forces of hell. The level design is very straightforward and repetitive, but I'd dare say this is the most "original" Gameloft game out there.

Avengers Initiative ($6.99)

This is the first of four planned Avengers games, each themed after one of the four main heroes. This one follows everyone's favorite green giant (the Hulk) and it's one of the most hilarious Infinity Blade knock-offs I've seen. Now, I am easily what you would call a "Marvel fanboy" but this honestly seems like a re-skin of Infinity Blade more than anything, with the same kind of interface, camera angles, animations and the rest. It honestly made me laugh out loud. Still, the gameplay seems pretty solid, and they do mix things up a little bit with some more Arkham City: Lockdown type mechanics. Also, it pretty much uses the exact plot of the Earth's Mightiest Heroes cartoon show, which I confess to loving. Like that, you clean up after a big super villain prison escape, which is pretty neat.

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Super Hexagon ($0.99)

Terry Cavanagh was the developer behind the gravity manipulation platformer, VVVVVV. It was a simple, elegant, but challenging game with retro visuals and excellent chip tunes. I highly recommend it. Likewise, I recommend his first iOS outing, Super Hexagon. it's a simple, pure arcade title in every sense of the word. You control a small triangle that rotates around the edge of a hexagon at the center of the screen. Each side has its own lane, and it's up to you to switch lanes while avoiding the lines headed your way. The soundtrack is crazy awesome, and the game is ridiculously challenging, but I couldn't stop hitting the "try again" button.

Drakerider (Free)

Developed by Witchcraft Inc and published by Square Enix, this new iOS JRPG is quite interesting, and it's all about dragon riding. It involves a unique combat system that is more about how tightly you control your dragon companion, sliding the chains to adjust. Giving your dragon some freedom will let him unleash powerful attacks, but too much and you might lose control. Like a lot of recent Square titles, such as Final Fantasy Dimensions, this game is episodic in nature, and really quite expensive when you look at it as a whole. The intro chapter is free, but each of the five subsequent chapters are seven dollars each.

VS. Racing 2 ($0.99)

This is a simple, fun and surprisingly stunning-looking new racer. It's a top down 2-D racer with drop dead gorgeous 3-D visuals that I can't praise enough. Being completely top down makes for some interest depth of field-type visual effects too. Gameplay involves auto-accelerated cars, with you only focusing on steering. As you complete the single player races, you'll unlock those levels to be used in the local or unique online multiplayer, all the while earning coins to buy better cars and upgrades. To be frank, it's a little light on features, especially on the single player side, when compared to other big iOS racers, but its simple gameplay and great graphics make it worth a look.

Scorching Skies ($4.99)

Taking after aerial combat games like Ace Combat, this new game from Overpower Studios is pretty interesting. In it, you build your own fleet in a kind of sub-game, but have direct control over your heroic ace pilot in the battle portions. Over time, you'll build and customize every plane in your fleet, unlocking better blueprints as you go. There is even multiplayer! This game is also pretty gorgeous, with high quality HD visuals, but there is a snag: it's optimized for the iPhone 4S and iPad 2 or higher. It isn't recommended for 3GS or lower, and the game still chugged along heavily on my iPhone 4. Only get this one if you have the device to run it.