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Fresh iPhone Apps for Aug. 16: Jack Lumber, Random Heroes, Flip’s Escape, Puzzle Quest

by Phil Hornshaw

This morning’s Fresh Apps sees the weekly blast of fresh iPhone games hitting the iTunes App Store, and we’ve got four one dollar offerings worth your attention. Up first is Jack Lumber, a Fruit Ninja-like slashing title in which you’ll split a whole lot of logs. Following that are Random Heroes, a side-scrolling action title from the creators of League of Evil and Flip’s Escape, a vertical scroller from the makers of The Last Rocket. Finally, there’s Puzzle Craft, a game that splits matching gameplay with simulation as you build your own medieval settlement.Let’s get started.

Jack Lumber (iPhone, iPad) $0.99 (through August 18)

Fruit Ninja may have popularized the “slicing” game genre, in which players use their fingers as blades to slash through different objects, but Jack Lumber wants to make something new of that formula. Instead of slicing through a number of pieces of fruit, players need to slice logs lengthwise. Touching the screen slows down time so you can get to work, and the goal is to make one continuous slice through all the logs on the screen.

Jack Lumber changes things up by throwing in various logs that require you to slice them in different ways. Some have corners that you’ll have to move around and others require more than one slice or a slice in a certain direction. You score more points for getting through the logs as fast as you can and for not making mistakes, and all your scores are cataloged on Game Center leaderboards.

Random Heroes (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

The makers of the League of Evil titles have put their phenomenal touchscreen controls to work again, this time in a side-scrolling action game instead of a platformer. Random Heroes has players fighting through various levels as they take down monsters, grabbing money along the way to upgrade weapons and buy new costumes.

Random Heroes includes 30 levels and 10 different weapons to find and purchase. It also packs a few extra cool features, including iCloud saves, iOS Universal support, and Game Center.

Flip’s Escape (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

Flip’s Escape is a direct sequel to puzzle title The Last Rocket, continuing its storyline. This one is a vertical scroller in which players guide a rocket named Flip away from an exploding star, dodging meteors and grabbing stars to increase his speed. Your only ability in avoiding meteors is to tap the screen to hit the brakes, but if you gather enough stars, you enter warp speed.

You can also earn gems from meteors that allow you to unlock power-ups and upgrades to your rocket that let you survive a bit longer. Scores are tracked on Game Center leaderboards, and you can unlock achievements as you play.

Puzzle Craft (iPhone, iPad) $0.99

Marrying matching gameplay with simulation is Puzzle Craft, a game in which your ultimate goal is to build a medieval town from the ground up. In order to do that, you’ll need to lay down buildings and hire peasants to work the land while matching different objects laid out across grids in order to gather resources from farms and mines.

The more you play, you’ll have access to more diverse  buildings. You can find and hire more villagers to increase productivity, or add different specialty buildings to be more efficient. There’s also Game Center support to see how your international rank.

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