Happy New Year From iOS Affairs: Here’s What’s Coming in 2014

Hello iOS Affairs readers! I actually thought there would be no one left reading the blog after all the time I was away recovering, but I recently started looking at the blog visitor numbers again, and I was very wrong. In fact, on an average day, iOS Affairs still gets 200-300 visitors! I'm absolutely amazed!

You can check out the end-of-the-year stats in a fun WordPress-created report (put together by stat monkeys!) & you'll see that about 95,000 people read iOS Affairs in 2013!

But, this post isn't about last year. It's not a review, it's not another apology for being away so long (although I did miss you all), & it's not another false start at returning the blog to an active status (barring some huge catastrophe like flying monkeys taking over the world, of course).

What this post IS about is what's coming up in 2014.

New, Newish, & Just a New Look for 2014

  • An overflowing list of cool reviews of new apps & some very cool apps you may have missed last year while I was away (Did everyone see Frax HD? How about Poshlight or Springle or …? Okay, I'm going to force myself to stop now!)
  • Some new blog features & special types of posts (still being finalized, so you'll have to wait for more on this).
  • More posts featuring how-to's, apps for specific people/professions/hobbies/etc., analytic/news posts to help you make decisions when buying new toys, apps, & accessories, pro/con posts on using new iOS 7 features or buying new devices, & the list goes on & on.
  • A look back at past posts including much-needed updates to key posts for apps like Instagram & Camera+ by Tap Tap Tap, just to name 2.
  • Posts with insight from the people who make all these apps possible – the developers. I want to talk to some of the great developers I've been able to get to know while writing iOS Affairs & I want to share some of their valuable advice, knowledge, & tips with you.
  • Reviews of some new products like fiftythree's fabulous new Pencil stylus that goes perfectly with their Paper iPad app, but can be used anywhere you usually use a stylus. Other products include the iPad Air; I know it's a little late, but it'll have my personal how-to's & tips that you won't find anywhere else. And, we'll see what else comes out this year. As a unrestrained early adopter, you can bet I'll have whatever it is as soon as possible.
  • And of course, new roundups of Big Fish Games! They've put out some incredible games for iOS in the past year & I will tell you which ones are worth playing & which ones you should skip. My pie in the sky plan is to eventually provide you with a list of every single Big Fish Game available for iOS with mini-reviews & links. That will take a bit of time, though.

All of this & much, much more will be coming to you very soon. I have a few ducks I need to make stay in a row before I can start writing again on a daily basis (those crazy ducks simply won't stay where I put them!).

My Word (I Pinky Swear)

I promise (within reason) that this is not another false start. I've wanted to start writing again for some time, but I didn't want to keep coming back, realizing I'm still too sick, rinse & repeat. So, I waited. I waited & waited & waited (I HATE waiting) until I felt healthy enough on a daily basis for a long enough time that I could be sure that I am up to the job of consistently bringing you important readers the news & reviews you're looking for.

What I Learned While Away

While I was waiting, I was too sick to do much. But, being sick couldn't keep me from my iDevices. Most of the time, it was all I was capable of doing. The upside is that I have SO much to tell you!

I started making a list of projects I did over the past 7 months, research I did in the App Store, little known apps I managed to find in dark, hidden corners, cool ways to save & actually make money using your iOS device, amazing gifts to give no matter what your price range, new social media groups/apps that have popped up (especially with a focus on photography), etc., etc., etc.

I read articles & magazines that gave me insight & ideas that I want to share with you, played with more apps than you can conceive of (I passed the 7,000 mark for apps I own!), found better ways to do many everyday chores using my iOS devices, & truly became an iDevice-only user when the only computer I had access to decided to die.

I have so much to say, so much to share, so much I want to show you, but I'm going to say goodnight now before this gets too long even by my standards. I'll leave you with some highlights from the list of more than 100 items I made of experiences I've had in the past 7 months in the iOS arena that led to ideas for posts.

I'm sure some of these will change a bit, some will combine with others, & some just won't work out like I planned, but this will give you an idea of what you have to look forward to.

Overly Long List of Upcoming Post Ideas

  • Doing Christmas iOS Style & Giving Gifts Digitally
  • How to Set Up Multiple Devices Within Families So Everyone Has Their Own iCloud Account, But Apps Are Shared
  • Is the 128GB iPad Worth It? Can iOS Handle That Much Data?
  • Explaining the App World to Complete Novices
  • Setting Up a Private Social Media Circle for Families/Groups of Friends: Which Apps Work Best?
  • Making Apps: Even Kids Can Do It With Newer Teaching Apps Available
  • Problem With an App You Just Bought? The Best Way to Resove It Isn't a Complaint in the App Store, It's Talking to the Developer: Here's How
  • How Do I Own 7,000 Apps? I'm Far From Rich, but I Know Where & When to Look for Paid App Sales
  • Banking on iOS: Is it Safe?
  • Are Game Reviews Rigged? Here's What I Learned
  • Justifying the Price of More Expensive Apps
  • Why AppleCare+ is an Absolute Must & the ABC's of AppleCare
  • New Arrivals on the Hidden Object Game Scene
  • How to Live Without a Computer
  • Social Apps for Photographers
  • Could iOS Gaming Ever Replace Consoles?
  • Why So Many Developers Choose to Make Apps for iOS First or Only Make Apps for iOS (It's Not About Money Really)
  • I Crossed the 2,000 Apps on 1 Device Mark & My iPhone Got Very Angry
  • Everything You Need to Know to Use Shared Photostreams
  • Why Your Mobile Phone Company is NOT the Place to Go for Device Problems
  • 2-Step Verification is Becoming Quite Popular: How it Works & When You Should Use It
  • Angry Your Favorite App Was Replaced With a Newer Version Instead of an Update After iOS 7? Here's Why It Happened
  • iOS 7: “Change for Change's Sake” or “Change or Perish”?
  • Why the Original iPad is Becoming Obsolete & Why I Think That Will Happen Faster for the iPad 2
  • How to Tell if an App is Abandoned & Why/When You Should Avoid Abandoned Apps
  • Is Apple Really That Expensive or Is It Just an Image?
  • How to Get the Do Not Disturb Feature to Really Not Disturb You (But Still Let the People You Want Get Through)
  • Has the iPad Finally Lost It's Entertainment Device Only Image?
  • Where to Find Cell Usage Data in iOS 7 & Other Apps You Can Stop Buying Because Your iOS Does That Now (plus, How to Save Data by Shutting Off Specific Apps)
  • The New Generation of Bluetooth Stylus'
  • The Best non-Safari Ways to Search the Internet
  • What Is That List of Apps at the Bottom of the Settings App For?
  • How Augmented Reality Is Going to Change What You See
  • iBook Alternatives: They Keep Making More!
  • Learning to Read Faster Using Cool New Apps
  • What's So Different About iOS 7 Wallpaper? (plus, a list of new key words & their definitions)
  • Best Dictionary/Thesaurus Apps & Why They Need to Do More Than Give Word Definitions Anymore (plus, a how-to on setting up the integrated iOS dictionary, in case you don't know it exists)
  • Everything I Learned During the iOS 7 Update Process (Possible Fix for Hung Up Update!) & You Won't Believe How Much Faster Restoring 64GB Via the iPad Air Is!
  • Train Your Brain, Improve Your Memory & Focus Using the Best Puzzle Apps & Other Assorted Helper Apps
  • Mood-Measuring & Tracking Apps; I've Tried Almost All of Them – Here Are the Best of Them
  • I Made My 1st Kickstarter Purchase: How It Works & Is It Worth It?
  • Device Peripherals: I Finally Found a Decent 3rd-Party Lightning Cord. Plus, Cases, External Battery Sources, Camera Adapters (and Why They Aren't Needed), Other Cords, etc.
  • Is a Quad-core Device Really Better?
  • Biggest Innovations of 2013 & What May Be Coming Next
  • Does Anyone Actually Know What's “Best” for Batteries? Truth, Fiction, & Who Knows
  • Paid vs Free: Does It Change How We Behave? A Look at the Paid, Free, Freemium Choices Developers Make
  • When Reading Reviews Is Worth It, When It's Not, & How to Know the Difference (plus, How to Be a Discerning Reader)

Well, I guess I decided to give you a little more than a peek! You know me though – I'm wordy & always write too long. That's what you like about me though, right?

Tell Me Your Ideas & What You Think of My Ideas, Please!

Let me know what you think of the list & other plans I have for iOS Affairs. Tell me what you want to see 1st or what you're not interested in seeing at all. Send me an email with any other ideas you might want to see instead or in addition.

I'm so glad to be back & to be able to write to all of you. It's been far too long!

Who, What, When, Tumblr?

I don't have an exact date for when iOS Affairs will return officially. It will be within the month. When I know the date, I will send a Tweet (follow @iosaffairs on Twitter) & put it on Facebook (like IOS Affairs Facebook Page). I'm looking into how to to short notes using the current design of this blog. Hopefully I'll find a way to place a note on the website, as well.

Did you know there is a Tumblr Edition of iOS Affairs? It is mostly the same posts you read here on the WordPress website, but I often publish extras on the Tumblr edition (things that won't fit or will be too long, extra infographics that may be off-topic, Instagram photos from the iOS Affairs Instagram account, & other tidbits & fun things).

I haven't said this for such a long time, but:

That's it for me today. Until later, …

 

Another 6 iOS Games You Should Play

Tracy:

I'm reblogging this useful & funny iOS game review both because of my writing absence (have you noticed?) & because Hedge (the writer) is one of my favorite bloggers at Funk's House of Geekery.

His taste in games may vary a bit from mine at times, but he is an excellent writer (he actually knows how to use commas correctly. oops my copy editor genes are showing) & he reviews games from almost every genre.

His knowledge of gaming history is extensive & I often have know idea what he is referring to, but I trust that he knows that from which he speaks.

So, enjoy this review of 6 iOS games you should give a try. I'm going to play Paper Monsters right now.

Originally posted on Funk's House of Geekery:

by Hedge

iOS. It’s becoming more of a legitimate gaming platform by the day. Since the last article of this nature got such a welcome response, I’ve been thinking of, and listing up, games ever since although honestly I’ve been playing so much Prison Architect that everything else in my life has come second place. Sorry family, friends and employment.

But recently I’ve been exploring the platform again. More specifically, this past weekend where I found myself in the Perth Apple store, leeching their wifi to finish the download of KOTOR – more on that soon.

So here, for your perusal, are six more iOS games you should give a shot. Maybe not as obscure as the previous list, nor as long, but still a really good collection no matter what kind of games you enjoy.

Carcassonne

By The Coding Monkeys

Available for iPad/iPhone

Played on iPad

Slowly conquering the world one little blue guy at a time.

I’ve recently, partly…

View original 1,555 more words

Ultimate Guide to Memorial Day Weekend iOS App Sales

I’ve been kind of hibernating for a few days, so I thought it only fair that upon my return I bring you something amazing. I’ve prepared a list of Memorial Day weekend app sales to end all lists. It’s your ultimate guide to all the best apps on sale. Not just games. This list has everything!

What makes this list better than most holiday app lists? I own almost every app on the list & do mini-reviews of each app. This is not just a list of the usual big-ticket games, this list includes apps I guarantee you will not find on most other lists. Even the games I pick are not the usual. Well, check it out & see.

Some of these apps don’t explicitly say that they are on sale for Memorial Day, so don’t get mad at me if they’ve gone up in price again by Monday. I’m just going to show you the best FREE & reduced price apps available today that look like they will be available all weekend. But, I’m not psychic

Games

World Conqueror 2

One of the only FREE games I could find that I could actually recommend is World Conqueror 2 (universal). There are scattered listings of FREE games for this weekend, but to be honest, most games are just reduced price. Most are discounted to 99 cents, which is actually a really good deal when you consider that many of them normally cost anywhere between $5-$10. Don’t be disappointed though! Check out some fabulous FREE apps in non-game categories. 

W.E.L.D.E.R.

W.E.L.D.E.R. (universal): This very popular & highly rated word game was an App Store New & Noteworthy app when it was 1st released. Usually $2.99, W.E.L.D.E.R. takes classic word-building & adds wackiness & fun. You can play solo or against your Game Center friends & random opponents.

99-cent Deals

EA games

All EA Games: As usual for a holiday weekend, almost all EA (Entertainment Arts) games have been reduced to 99 cents. Titles range from the likes of Max and the Magic Marker (iPad version) to The Sims 3 (iPhone only) You can browse all of the EA games by searching the App Store for “EA games” or “Entertainment Arts games.” Either works & will bring up a listing of all of this developer’s games.

Gameloft games

All Gameloft Games: Another developer who’s put all of their titles on sale this weekend is Gameloft. These games usually run you about $6.99, so 99 cents is a pretty good deal. A good example of a Gameloft game is Wild Blood (universal). The fact that most Gameloft games are universal (unlike most EA games) makes them an even better deal. 

Playdek games

All Playdek Games: Although they have a smaller library of games, don’t count Playdek out. Most of their games tend more toward the board game genre, but I love board games. Check out the highly rated Ascension: Chronicle of the Godslayer (universal) for an exciting magic-like card game, or Fluxx (universal) for a game the whole family will love trying to figure out. 

Shiny The Firefly

Shiny The Firefly (universal): I haven’t played Shiny, but it is rated very highly & is on my AppShopper Social wish list. It is a platformer that may look like it is only for children, but I think it may appeal to everyone. Shiny usually costs $2.99. 

Jacob Jones

Jacob Jones and the Bigfoot Mystery: Episode 1 (universal): This game aimed at children, but yet again appealing to everyone, was in the App Store’s New & Noteworthy category just last week. Usually priced at $2.99, it has been discounted for a limited time. I was really excited to see this on the list of sale apps, except for the fact that I bought it last week at the normal price :( Oh well!

Penumbear

Penumbear (universal): I haven’t bought this platformer yet, but it looks absolutely amazing! Usually $1.99, Penumbear gets almost 5 stars from critics & App Store reviewers alike. The twist in this game is that you can only walk on the line between shadow & light. Luckily, your best friend is a firefly who can turn lights on & off. There are more than 100 levels of puzzles based on this premise, plus lots of extra things to find & bosses to fight as you help Penumbear escape a creepy castle. 

Everything Else

Photography – FREE Apps

InstaDaily

InstaDaily (iPhone only): Usually $2.99, I picked this little app up yesterday for FREE. This is 1 of the apps that I’m not sure why it’s on sale, so it may not last all weekend. InstaDaily lets you add a magazine-like feel to your photos. You can take them with the frame showing while you shoot, or you can import photos & see what works with what. It’s pretty cool looking!

TypoPic

TypoPic – Text 3D Rotation (iPhone only): This very cool app (usually 99 cents) is new to the App Store this week, but already it’s 1 of my very favorite text on photos app (& I have a zillion of them). What makes TypoPic stand out from the crowd is the fact that you can not only adjust type in about a million ways (expect a full review coming soon), but you can also rotate the text in any direction so that it looks 3D. & it actually works! It looks just amazing. 

Albu

Albu – Beautiful Photo Manager (iPhone only): Albu is an app that organizes all of the photos in your Photo app on its own. All you have to do is enjoy your photos in neat albums that usually make sense. You don’t have to do anything but open the app. Usually 99 cents. 

PhotoCal with Event

PhotoCal with Event (universal): Usually $2.99, PhotoCal is a great way to organize & view your photos. The app arranges all of your photos by date & even lets you view it all in a calendar-like view where you can see a sampling of what you took a month at a time. 

Text On Pics PRO

Text On Pics PRO (universal):  Another app where you can add text on top of photos, but this 1 has an astounding 180 fonts & is universal. Other than that, this is your standard app for doing this kind of task. But, it’s FREE! Download it & judge for yourself. What do you have to lose?

Strut Type

Strut Type (universal): This very cool camera/photo editing app just got even better, which is what they’re celebrating. Not so much about Memorial Day. It’s still a good time to pick up Strut Type for FREE. Strut Type transforms your photos into vintage, old-fashioned black & white photos. That may sound pretty limited, but there are actually 94 editing designs & with other factors added in, there are 500 possible combinations for diverse results. 

Photography – Discounted Apps

All JixiPix Apps: As you know if you read iOS Affairs, JixiPix is 1 of my very favorite developers because they make the very best photo editing apps. & this weekend, all JixiPix apps are only 99 cents! Yay! My favorite of the Jixi bunch is definitely PhotoArtistaHD – Haiku (iPad version), which is in the photo above. Haiku is a mix of watercolor, India ink & handmade papers. Other Jixi apps include Pop Dot Comics (iPhone version, although all are on sale), Grungetastic HD (iPad version) & Portrait Painter HD (iPad version). I have reviewed absolutely every Jixi app. You can find reviews of all the specific apps listed above here & here & here

ToonCamera

ToonCamera (universal): I know that a cartoon effect is included in just a ton of camera & editing apps, but ToonCamera just does this 1 thing, so they do it really well. Much better than some effect that you add on & can’t even edit with a cheap camera app. Usually $1.99, ToonCamera is on sale for 99 cents, and is also universal. You can take photos & video with many variations of cool cartoon styling with your iPhone or iPad.

Lifestyle Apps – FREE

Shatoetry
Shatoetry (iPhone only): This is a really funny app! What Shatoetry is about is writing poems (Shatisms) using words the app gives you (& they update the word list a lot). What makes it funny is that all the poems are read aloud when you’re done by William Shatner. For real. I’m not making it up. He recorded each word that you use & the app strings all the words together. Each word & even spaces can be emphasized with intuitive gestures. You can even save the voice recording as video & share it. Usually 99 cents. 

Cardio Buddy

Cardio Buddy – Touchless Camera Heart Rate Monitor (iPhone only): I’ve been using Cardio Buddy for some time now & it’s incredibly accurate as compared to what my heart rate is at the doctor’s. The algorithm that measures your heart rate just by looking at your face was developed by researchers at Berkeley & Stanford. It measures color variations in your face that are imperceptible to the eye. Plus, it will impress your friends. Usually $1.99. 

Smart Alarm Clock

Smart Alarm Clock for iPad: This app isn’t just an alarm clock. It also says (I own this app, but haven’t used it yet) that it tracks your sleep cycles & wakes you up at the best possible time based on when your body is coming out of deep R.E.M. sleep & going into a lighter sleep. Usually 99 cents (most apps that do this cost much more). 

Lifestyle Apps – Discounted

Social Diary

Social Diary – Automated Journal (iPad only): The name of this app is much longer because it actually includes all the social media the app supports. I shortened it, because that’s insane. Social Diary itself, though, is a cool concept & really neat to use. It imports all of your Facebook posts, Tweets, Instagram photos, & lets you choose which ones you want to write about more in your diary. All currently for 99 cents!

Sky Guide

Sky Guide: View Stars Night or Day (universal): I’m not that into astronomy (although I seem to own all the major apps), but Sky Guide really wowed me this week. It is in the App Store’s New & Noteworthy right now, so I can’t say what it usually costs, but the developer’s say the 99 cent price will double eventually. Still, that is not bad for an app of this kind. What’s so special about it? It uses actual photos of the sky, not simulated points of light, so it feels more real. Plus, the info that is written on everything is in-depth & not from Wikipedia. There is music that changes based on the size & temperature of the star you’re looking at. I could go on, but this is supposed to be brief. 

ScrapBook

ScrapBook – Tell Your Story (iPad only): This is an app I’m planning on picking up today. It looks really amazing & has everything you need to make great digital scrapbooks. You can include photos, text, maps, voice recordings, & there are a lot of ways to lay everything out in many cool themes. ScrapBook is by Left Coast Logic, a developer who has put all of there apps on sale this weekend. Most are quite expensive & are really more productivity apps, like calendars, but they are extremely innovative & worth a look. Usually $4.99, ScrapBook is on sale for $2.99.

Writing & Productivity Apps – FREE

Goodo Cal (iPhone only): Usually $3.99, this uniquely named calendar app is FREE right now. It is a very clean looking, non-traditional calendar (which I downloaded but haven’t gotten to yet). It may look minimalistic (which is the point), but it says it has many integrated functions, including Stream View, fast event creation, & ability to sync with Google Calendar. 

Getodo

Getodo – To-do Lists for Your Circles (iPhone only): I just downloaded this really amazing looking to-do list (to-do lists & to-do list apps are an obsession of mine). Getodo promotes itself as helping people who may be procrastinators or who feel inefficient. It helps these people by breaking down tasks into smaller, more do-able bits (I may need to try this). What attracted me, of course, are the beautiful themes & design. They really need to spell-check their app description, though. Usually 99 cents. 

Timer+ Touch

Timer+ Touch HD (iPad only): This is a neat app despite the fact that I think the app icon is really a turn-off & the claim that it is 1 of a kind because it is touch-enabled is stupid. However, if you have an iPad & need a timer, this is a really good 1 that you set just by swiping around the circle. Easy as can be & that’s about it. Usually 99 cents. 

Writing & Productivity Apps -Discounted 

TaskPaper

TaskPaper – Simple To-do Lists (universal): Usually $4.99, TaskPaper is on sale for $1.99. This 1 is on my wish list, but it looks really great & is very highly rated. The goal of TaskPaper is to feel just like you’re using a sheet of paper. It syncs with Dropbox to make sure you don’t lose all your precious info. 

TextGrabber

TextGrabber + Translator (iPhone only): This incredibly useful & accurate app grabs & translates words in anything you can photograph. You can even import existing photos that include words. Usually $9.99, TextGrabber is on sale for $4.99. When I say it grabs the text, I mean that it copies the words & changes them into editable text on your iPhone that can also be translated into a lot of different languages within the same app. 

Pencilicious

Pencilicious *Plus: Note taking, sketching, and drawing (iPad only): This is my go-to scratch-pad when I need to take notes quickly & I want to feel like I’m using a sheet of paper. The hand-writing is out of this world! The only thing Pencilicious is missing is the ability to use it in landscape mode. Other than that, this is a great app for taking notes by hand & I can see how it would be an awesome sketching app. Usually $2.99, it is on sale for $1.99. 

Songwriter's Pad

Songwriter’s Pad (iPad only): I saw this app, which is made by the same developers as Poet’s Pad (on my biggest wish list), & I had to share. Songwriter’s is usually $9.99, but this weekend it’s on sale for $1.99. For that price, you get a place to write lyrics with an integrated rhyming dictionary, dictionary & thesaurus. There is also a place to note chords with the lyrics & even a record function so you can sing or hum or whatever when the mood strikes you. Now, if only Poet’s Pad would go on sale this much!

That’s it for the list right now. I may update over the weekend if I see anything exceptional. Have a great holiday & thanks for reading my very long list!

That’s it for me today. Until later, … 

Big Fish Weekend Sales Continue Until Sunday Night

Big Fish Games

All Big Fish Games are on sale!

I apologize for not letting you know sooner, but Big Fish Games has begun their Mother's Day Weekend sale event. It started a few days ago and will continue until midnight (Eastern time) Sunday.

Almost all big name games for the iPad are running $2.99 and for the iPhone 99 cents. Smaller name games and most time management/strategy games are $1.99 on the iPad and 99 cents on the iPhone.

The price holds true whether you buy the game outright or buy the game with an in-app purchase.

Following is a list of posts that will help guide you to finding the best game for you:

Little Inferno Combines Arson, Chemistry for Fun

Little Inferno

I know a lot of you like the game My Laboratory. I know because you search for it & read that review a LOT! Today, I’m going to tell you about another game that uses chemistry-like combinations to create big fun. It’s called Little Inferno (HD universal game here).

Little Inferno is a lot more complex than My Laboratory. But, deep down, the premise is very similar.

LIttle Inferno

The story of Little Inferno involves your new ownership of a Little Inferno fireplace set. You just received it. Now it’s time to set things on fire. You don’t know why. You don’t know where you really are. You don’t really know a whole lot. You really don’t know what that face in the back of your fireplace is.

Little Inferno

But soon, you’ll be lighting stuff on fire with abandon & loving it without question. As you play, you unlock videos that tell more of the story (which I’m not going to reveal here) & letters from your neighbor (& others) who also owns a Little Inferno come regularly (you can burn those, too).

Little Inferno

You start out with a certian amount of money to buy things to burn out of a catalog. Each item costs a certain amount of money, but will create even more money when you burn it. That’s how you make money. You buy things. Burn them. Money comes out of them as they burn. You collect the money. You buy more things to burn.

There are little spiders that come crawling around, too. Tap on them to earn a little extra money.

Little Inferno

You’ll get new catalogs to buy things out of as you progress.

Now, you’ll be surprised how this in & of itself is fun. I’m not kidding. I have no arsonist tendencies, but each of the things you burn do funny things & watching them burn is fun.

Little Inferno

But, that’s not where this story ends. The fun really comes (& extra money & new catalogs) when you start figuring out combinations of things to burn together to meet the Combo requirements. All you get is a title (like Seafarers COMBO) & you have to figure out which things to burn together to get that COMBO.

This is where Little Inferno is a lot like My Laboratory. You must figure out what 2 or 3 things combined together create another thing. Little Inferno just adds some destruction to the process.

If you get stuck, there’s a terrific walkthrough that give you hints or outright tells you the answers to each of the combos.

This is really a beautiful game graphically. The story is compelling. And, you get to light things on fire for fun.

So, get crackling (excuse the bad pun).

That’s it for me today. Until later, …

Sadistic To-Do List CARROT Has Anger Issues

Carrot

CARROT is always watching you.

If you're looking for a to-do list that really works to motivate you to get things done (not in that traditional GTD way, though), look no further than CARROT: The To-Do List with a Personality.

Carrot

Really. I'm being quite serious. CARROT is chock full of personality, most of it malevolent.

Part game, part to-do list, part virtual pet, CARROT is an iPhone app that's great for people who don't take their to-do lists, very seriously. As entertainment goes, though, CARROT is tops & the list of features recently just got much longer. With 3 huge updates in as many months of existence, it looks like CARROT is just going to keep getting better & better.

When you open up CARROT for the 1st time, you will be greeted as the lazy human you are with your empty to-do list.

Add & complete some things & CARROT will gleefully give you points so you can level up, plus be very happy with you. (Pull down from the top to create a new item for your to-do list. Swipe right to complete the item.)

Carrot

Poke CARROT repeatedly in the ocular lens & CARROT will turn on you with a vengeance. (See what CARROT finally had to say to me at right.)

This is really my very favorite quick way to make CARROT mad at me & to make me laugh. I know it's not the intended use of CARROT or the most productive use of my time, but I already have a to-do list that meets all of my needs (read the Priorities review here), so CARROT's place is to meet my entertainment needs.

Carrot

That's where the game elements & all the extras come in.

See, for everything you do that's good (like complete a task on time), you get points. Points add up so you can attain new levels of greatness. With each new level, fun new things are added.

Some of these Unlockables are useful, like an icon badge that tells you how many items you have left to do or the ability to edit & delete or see completed items.

Some of these Unlockables are just for fun, like the cat you are gifted at level 5 that you can't see until you get Cat-Cam (a new update to the app) at level 10.

Some are just surprises.

Carrot

You can always check to see what mood CARROT is in by swiping left.

This is also where you can find customizable options that you can purchase in the Shop N Slack, a list of the Unlockables you have to look forward to, Challenges you can meet based on CARROT's mood, a Customizer that lets you, well, customize, the Cat-Cam (once you get to level 10) & Settings & such under More.

Also under More, you can Tweet and post to Facebook funny things that CARROT forces you to say. CARROT loves when you share! This is my 2nd favorite thing to do with CARROT, so far.

Carrot

In addition to the hilarity already mentioned, there is an overarching epic tale that is told while using/playing with CARROT. I'm not yet sure what this actually means, but if it's anything as good as the rest of the writing for this app, it's sure to be a winner.

Just the app description & update lists are amusing in themselves. I'm also really interested to see how some of these Challenges play out.

Carrot

People looking for some serious kick to their to-do list abilities won't be disappointed, either.

Among the Unlockable features are things like the ability to tell Siri what you need to do & have CARROT integrate the request when you open the app. Unfortunately, that doesn't come until level 24.

The ability to add reminders comes at level 18, recurring tasks at level 28, and nag alerts at level 13. The levels do go quickly, especially if you click off several tasks in a row quickly.

Carrot

My favorite Unlockable, that I may never see, comes at level 100. CARROT writes you a symphony. It does draw you a portrait at level 14, but I want the symphony!

On top of all of this, you can customize CARROT in many ways.

The Mood Ring Theme lets CARROT show you emotions in a more colorful way. There are Task Icons you can buy to replace the boring checkmark when you complete a task. There are even outfits for your famous kitten.

Speaking of my kitten, I just received her & have no idea where she is or what she looks like.

Off I go to irritate my to-do list & try to level up so I can see what's next!

That's it for me today. Until later, …

Mad Libs Meet Digital Age

Mad Libs

Mad Libs app for kids (and big kids).

Adult Mad Libs

I’m feeling awfully silly this morning, so I decided to spread the silliness with a review of the official Mad Libs and Adult Mad Libs apps for iOS. Both apps are universal, meaning they can be played on the iPad, iPhone & iPod.

Mad Libs

Random Mad Libs facts …

I’ll go out on a limb here in thinking that most of you know what Mad Libs are. If you’ve been living under a rock for the past 30 years, Mad Libs is a game where you are given a story with blanks that you fill in with random words & it ends with hilarity.

The only difference between the Mad Libs app & the Adult Mad Libs app is in the maturity of content for the stories. The regular Mad Libs has your usual stories about writing book reviews, saving princesses, etc., that you probably remember from grade school. Adult Mad Libs has stories about pick-up lines & getting drunk. Personally, I like the regular Mad Libs better, but either can be fun given the right group of people.

Adult Mad Libs

The honestly ridiculously simple instructions for playing Mad Libs.

The fun of Mad Libs really comes from playing with the right people. Sure, you can play with people who when asked for a noun always answer “yarn” or “dog.” But, play with the right people & you get answers that cannot be printed here.

Mad Libs can be fun either way & with whomever you play. Even yarn & dog can make a funny sentence when placed in the right blank. You just never know. Sometimes a Mad Libs result will have you laughing for days. Sometimes it will have you rethinking your life. Sometimes it will just have you rethinking your pastimes.

Mad Libs

Hit hints for examples of words that you could use.

Now, with Mad Libs for iOS, you can actually play all by yourself, something that is impossible to do with the books you buy at the store (which are getting more & more expensive by the year). It may not be as much fun as playing with a group of friends, but it can pass the time & make you laugh all by yourself.

The reason you can play by yourself is that Mad Libs & Adult Mad Libs for iOS has you choose words without seeing the story at all. All you know is the title. You do 1st pick out the story you want to play, but then, you just see a blank like the 1 pictured above.

The checkmarks keep track of how many words you have answered & have left to answer & you can press Hints to get a list of words that meet that blank’s requirement flowing below the blank. Use 1 of them or just use them to get an idea & fill in the blank on your own.

Mad Libs

The selection of books available in Mad Libs.

Adult Mad Libs

Mad Libs & Adult Mad Libs are both FREE to download & include 1 FREE book to play, with about a dozen or so stories in each book. Additional books are available for purchase & are considerably less expensive than their paper counterparts.

Adult Mad Libs

Both apps contain the same things on the main screen: Statistics about how you’ve been playing & sharing, Instructions to play, Quick Review of word functions & an About section.

The Quick Review can be helpful, because even the most astutue among us do sometimes forget what an adverb is & how it is used.

Mad Libs

Keep track of just about all the stats you could ever want.

Mad Libs

Of course, there has to be social side to to it since it is a game on an iDevice in this century. So, the creators of Mad Libs made the Stats section to help you keep track of how many Mad Libs you own in your library & how many you’ve completed, tweeted, emailed, shared, etc., plus, how much time you’ve wasted playing this funny game.

You can also Tweet or share on Facebook any finished story or really anything in the app.

Adult Mad Libs

Stories are displayed on coaster-like boxes that you shuffle through.

Mad Libs

The original Mad Libs has the same story choice selector.

So, just download 1 of the Mad Libs’ apps, pick a story, from 1 of the books you own & pass your device over to someone so you can enjoy the hilarity that comes from throwing random words into the ether & ending up with a story.

Mad Libs

Finish up your funny with a silly photo.

Oh, I forgot to mention that besides just choosing words, you also get to choose a photo to represent the story you’ve written.

You know how there is always a little drawing at the top of the Mad Libs in the paper editions? Well, in the digital version, you can choose a photo from your Photos app or take a new photo of your silly group to illustrate the story you’ve just done.

The completed story looks like this:

That’s it for me today. Until later, …

About Mad Libs

About Mad Libs

New Hidden Object Game Based On TV Show Lost Girl a Winner

Lost Girl

I’ve never seen the TV show, but the game is wonderful!

I downloaded the brand new game Lost Girl yesterday with some trepidation, frankly out of desperation. I have completed every Big Fish game, & I needed something to play. I have played the type of game Lost Girl is before & I’ve always hated them. But, like I said, I was desperate.

Lost Girl

I am SO glad that I gave it a try. The fact that it is a completely FREE hidden object/adventure game (unless you buy power-ups and such that you really don’t need unless you’re impatient) was the biggest reason I downloaded it. The reason I’m continuing to play it, however, is a combination of interesting storyline, decent hidden object scenes (although they can get repetitive), strong characters, & lack of annoying tasks that are pointless.

You see, Lost Girl is not just a hidden object game. It’s not like a Big Fish game where it has 1 storyline that is cohesive & ends. Lost Girl is a never-ending game that keeps coming up with new mysteries to solve, new assignments & tasks to complete & introduces new characters & locations periodically.

Lost Girl

This is the map that allows you to travel from place to place in Lost Girl.

There are many of these types of games. If you search for hidden object games in the App Store on the iPad, the biggest games to pop up are games like Gardens of Time & Mystery Manor. I’ve tried these games before, but I absolutely hate them!

They give you endless & pointless tasks to find objects that have nothing to do with what you actually need to find. The tutorials last forever, they guide you on exactly what you’re to do next with absolutely no exploring or free play & they make their money off selling you energy to keep playing & trinkets for good luck.

Lost Girl

Now, Lost Girl does have many of the same characteristics of those endless play games, but for some reason, it is able to pull it off without seeming contrived & being downright annoying. I have not seen the TV show that the game is based on, but the stories & characters seem strong & this game was obviously carefully thought out. It is not just some afterthought made to try to get more viewers (although, I’m sure they’d like that).

Since I haven’t seen the show, I can’t really tell you if the premise is accurate or not. But, here’s the story.

Lost Girl

The create a character set-up.

You play a new Fae (different types of fairies and magical beings) who has just come to town. You have a knack for finding things & are quickly swept up in controversy & mystery. Your finding things skill makes you a desired asset for many of the main players in town, so you have no trouble finding things to do to make money. I have not played very far into the game, so I can’t tell you much more, but I have played for several hours & it is an intriguing world the game is set in, filled with magic, mystery, & mayhem.

The game starts out with you designing your own Fae character to play, which is a very nice touch that is reminiscent of console games, although without quite as much depth. The tutorial is extensive, but in this case it was quite necessary at least for me, because I am unfamiliar with this type of game play. Unfortunately, there is no way to skip the tutorial or at least parts of it if you are familiar with this type of game. I think I would be annoyed if I had to go through half an hour of tutorial when I knew what to do.

Lost Girl

This is a hidden object scene you’ll become quite familiar with.

Basically, you start out in 1 place (a bar), where a bartender explains the game to you. You are given tasks and assignments that you read & accept. Then, you go to the designated hidden object scene that hides the object necessary to fulfill said assignment & find objects that are not the things you actually receive.

I totally don’t understand that last point. Why do I have to find a helmet, globe, & moon, when what I’m actually after is tomato juice? It is asinine. But, I digress.

The tutorial ends (kind of) & you are left to find the city map on your own (top, right corner). From that map, you can travel to any designation that pops up & is relevant to the assignment you’re trying to complete. The tutorial pops up here & there when you encounter something new, like fighting.

Lost Girl

Here’s the guy you need to fight 1st.

The fighting is a new element that I’ve never seen in this type of game. It is not difficult. You just press buttons to block & punch & you can use your Fae powers that you’ve been developing as you level up to defeat your enemy. It is actually pretty cool & really shows off how awesome the graphics are in this game.

There is truly too much going on in this game for me to do a complete walkthrough like I usually try to do, besides the fact that I’ve barely started playing. I am confident that you will do well with it though, because it is not overly hard & the walkthrough is extensive, extensive, extensive.

You do have to watch your energy level, which is the 1 thing I really don’t like. If your energy level gets too low, you can’t do anything without eating something that you have to pay for or find. Most of the time, you will pay for it. However, you can wait & come back to the game when your energy has been refreshed (it will refresh even if the game is closed). The game also does start you with a generous sum of money & you make a lot of money while playing.

Lost Girl

This is the item store. There is also a clothing store.

If you want to buy clothing & other things in the store, you could easily start spending real-world money. But, unlike other games of this type, they don’t seem to be pushing that path overly much or requiring things you can’t find with perseverance.

Speaking of perseverance, many of the things you need to find will require you to find the same objects in the same scenes over and over and over again. It can become tedious, but the scenes are actually difficult enough & they move around the objects you need to find, so it isn’t as bad as it could be. Plus, you have to find more & more objects the higher up you get in the game.

There are no hints, but you can use your Fae powers (you have to pay after a few) to find things. They do refresh naturally after 24 hours.

Lost Girl

I like to play games like these, well Big Fish-like games, for hours upon hours. Unless you spend some money, you will have to take breaks to refresh your energy in this game. Now, I’m not opposed to spending money on games.

You know what an advocate I am for developers being able to make a living. But, I’d much rather spend $5 or $7 on a game upfront & just be able to play it. I really don’t like the buy a little here & buy a little there strategy. It can quickly build up to massive amounts of money.

But overall, Lost Girl is a winner in my opinion. It has some quality that escapes naming that makes it just different from other games of this kind. I think I can get over the need to play endlessly (for hours) if I get to play this game endlessly in the long run (for a year).

Lost Girl’s real strength lies in the excellent graphics, FAR better hidden object scenes than usual in this type of game, & characters & storylines that grab your attention & make you want to keep going to find out what happens next.

P.S. I’m sorry that this deviates from my normal reviews. I didn’t walk you through exactly how to play & I didn’t have only positive things to say about the game. I promise I’ll be back to my normal reviewing self by tomorrow :)

That’s it for me today. Until later, …

Lost Girl

New characters & storyline will be coming up, developers promise.

Top 10 Best Big Fish Games of 2013 (So Far)

wpid-Photo-Apr-2-2013-1203-AM.jpg

It is about time I did a Big Fish roundup of their hidden object games (although, I’ll mention a few bonuses that are not). I decided to do the 10 best games that have been released so far this year, along with a warning about 2 games you should probably avoid.

In case you haven’t heard of Big Fish, they are developers who specialize mostly in games where you are finding and interacting with objects in scenes that are brought together through the telling of an overarching story. Many of the games are simply find hidden objects, but many require you to use the objects that you find in a certain way to move the story forward.

Most of the games are free to try for the first few levels, and then you can purchase the rest of the game. Big Fish games cost between $2 and $7 for the full version. Although, they have recently starting having a sale price on brand new games for 20%-30% off the full price of the game for the first few days it is out.

As a note, you may want to buy the collector’s editions and not the full version of games. Collector’s editions often give you bonus features like strategy guides and extra game play that the full games may not have. That means you need to download the free versions of the game and buy them in-app, but they are still on sale there. When not on sale, collector’s editions cost about $2 more than the full versions usually. But, they are well worth if they contain extra game play and a strategy guide.

I apologize for just screenshots of screenshots in this post, but all of these games are large and I delete them after I finish with them to make room for more. The games have gotten even larger since the iPad got the Retina screen, which necessitates even more MB.

The Top 10 (in no particular order)

Surface

Surface: Mystery of Another World Collector’s Edition

This iPad only game that was released in January tells the story of a father and son traveling by train when the son suddenly goes missing. The father (you) goes to all lengths to get his son back, even as far as leaving this world behind for another.

What sets this game apart, like many in this top 10, are the stunning graphics, fantastic puzzles, and smooth storytelling. I actually played this game 2 times in a row I liked it so much. The journal that the father keeps also keeps time as a map of the world or area you are in currently and a portal to jump to any of those times. Plus, you can watch any cut scenes that you miss through the journal as little video clips.

Surface is as smooth as can be. All rounded corners, no jagged, unfinished edges. I really can’t recommend it highly enough.

iPad edition

Dark Parables: Rise of the Snow Queen

Dark Parables: Rise of the Snow Queen Collector’s Edition

Rise of the Snow Queen came out just late last week. It tells the story of an investigation led by you into the disappearance of an entire village of children. It is said that the Snow Queen steals children away during snowstorms with her supernatural powers. This time, she may have gone too far and the fate of the world rests in your hands. It is a shame I can’t tell you more about this story because it is built on a well-loved and known fairy tale told in a new and unique way. You’ll be surprised as the story unravels. I’ll say only this. Sometimes bad guys need to be saved, too.

Dark Parables is a line of games by Big Fish. This is the most recent edition for iOS. It is practically flawless in design. The graphics are sensational and the method of play is innovative. The story is not overwhelming, but it is told at a steady pace that will keep you hooked.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Haunted Mansion

Haunted Manor: Queen of Death Collector’s Edition

Haunted Manor came out in mid-January and is still 1 of the scariest Big Fish Games I have ever played. I’ve played it twice, and it retained its scary grip on me even the 2nd time through.

In Haunted Manor, you do not play a detective. You play a young girl who gets a letter from her twin sister that tells of the rest of the family’s demise. You rush home to help save your sister only to find her elusive. You actually witness the deaths of each of your parents during the game, along with a postman, and your nanny. This is a harsh game in storytelling. I hesitate to say much more about the plot, but suffice it to say, you must fight hard to at least save yourself if nothing else.

Haunted Manor has great hidden object scenes with objects that must be uncovered in the scenes themselves. The puzzles are uncommonly good, and the graphics are perfect. Haunted Manor is a long game made even longer with the extra gameplay in the bonus section. It will make the hair stand up on the back of your neck, but you’ll still want to play more.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Devil's Triangle

Hidden Expedition 4: Devil’s Triangle

Devil’s Triangle actually came out a few days before the new year, but I had so much fun playing it that I decided it was close enough to count in this roundup. The story continues what was started in Hidden Expeditions 1-3, all of which are out on iOS, I believe, but this is by far the best of the bunch.

Devil’s Triangle is of course the Bermuda Triangle. On assignment with the agency that employs you, you venture there in search of a lost crewmate only to be stuck on an island that shows up on no maps. I’ll warn you though, this story ends on a cliffhanger.

Devil’s Triangle stresses the puzzle over the hidden object scenes, but both do exist. It’s just that using your logical skills and figuring out your next moves will play more heavily in this game than they do in some other pure hidden object games. Graphics are so stunning that this is a BIG download. You may even want to download it on iTunes and sync it to your device, but I didn’t.

If you’re a fan of the hidden object/adventure type games, this game definitely fits in and is up to snuff.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Cate West Velvet Keys

Cate West: The Velvet Keys

The 2nd Cate West game for iOS came out around Valentine’s Day. This series is highly acclaimed on consoles, but doesn’t fare too well with App Store reviewers, which is a shame. Most of the complaints have to do with there being too much dialogue and having to read too much. 1. This is part story. It can have a lot of dialogue. 2. There are voice actors to read you everything, so there’s no actual reading involved.

If you haven’t played the 1st Cate West game for iOS, I’d recommend you do that 1st. The story will make more sense. For those of you who know it, this game finds Cate and Ben on another case that will lead them closer to the truth about who they are and where they are going. The story is extraordinary!

I love the Cate West series because there are about 4-5 types of puzzles and hidden object type scenes per chapter and there are about 15-20 chapters, making this a long game. The games can be somewhat glitchy, but I found just signing off and signing back in were enough to fix them. And, it is worth doing that to play such an awesome game.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Redemption Cemetery 2

Redemption Cemetery: Children’s Plight Collector’s Edition

In early January, Redemption Cemetery 2 was released. It is better than the 1st 1, in my opinion. The story told is different than in the 1st, but the actions taken to get things done are the same. You must help put to rest the concerns holding the deceased to their resting places in 1 cemetery.

The fantastical places you’ll visit seem like you’re visiting other worlds. The play on light and dark, both literally and figuratively, give Redemption Cemetery a wonderful look. The hidden object scenes are interactive and the puzzles are well worth playing.

iPad Edition | iPhone Edition

The Fool

The Fool

The Fool just came out yesterday, but I have already finished it (that’s why this is being published today and not last night). I wasn’t sure what to think of it at 1st, but by the end, I was in love.

You play The Fool, who is hardly a fool at all. Your character enters a town that has been beset by a dragon. The king has promised the princess and half the kingdom to anyone who can kill the dragon and bring proof. That’s all I’m going to tell you, but do let me say that the journey your character goes on is a long 1 that seems as it it is coming to an end many times only to be extended.

The hidden object scenes are both beautiful and interactive. The graphics are gorgeous. The story is original. There’s really no reason I can think of that you should not try The Fool. Plus, it’s only $3.99 on the iPad for the next few days.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Elixir of Immortality

Elixir of Immortality

Elixir of Immortality, which was released about 2 weeks ago, is kind of sci-fi meets the dragon age. You play a detective (surprise, surprise) who has been assigned to investigate the mysterious goings on of a group of “scientists” working for the castle owner on an island. Someone in the bunch is a murderer, and you have to figure out who it is without being discovered as a detective.

This is not your usual suspense/adventure game. It is full of fun and fancy. The hidden object scenes are beautiful, but the puzzles are so much fun. So many of them are just completely original.

If you’re looking for something new and original that doesn’t scare you much at all, Elixir of Immortality is definitely a game for you.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Dark Strokes

Dark Strokes: Sins of the Fathers Collector’s Edition

This addition is another little cheat of mine on the date part, because it was released New Year’s Eve, but close enough.

Dark Strokes (besides having a kind of, um, well, interesting name) is a stunningly beautiful game all around. You play Ethan, who is trying to save his fiancé from something known as the Faceless Ones. The journey takes you all over a completely destroyed city that is teeming with supernatural forces.

This Collector’s Edition does get you extra game play, which is great, because recently not all Collector’s Editions have had it. Sometimes they just include stupid things like wallpaper and music from the game.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

Phenomenon

Phenomenon: City of Cyan

Phenomenon came out at the end of February. I had a hard time picking a 10th for this list, because although I loved so many other games, including this 1, they all seem to have some drawback or something that just didn’t sit well or play right.

City of Cyan is a great game, though. Particularly because the story it tells is so original that you will not feel like you’ve heard this 1 before. The puzzles and interactive hidden object scenes are just as original.

Oh, the story. You play Monica, who has returned to the City of Cyan to try to uncover the secrets surrounding her childhood in the city and find her parents. You are alone in the city, almost, because 20 years ago a dangerous experiment destroyed much of the city and turned the citizens into strange creatures.

iPad edition | iPhone edition

2 Games I’ve Already Reviewed This Year

There are 2 games I have already reviewed this year, or they would’ve made the top 10 list. So, I thought I would send you to their full reviews for more information.

2 Games I’d Avoid

There are 2 games that were so awful I either didn’t buy the full game (G.H.O.S.T. Hunters: The Haunting of Majesty Manor) or bought but soon deleted (Escape the Museum: The Complete Series). Both of these games had graphics so horrendous they made my eyes hurt trying to play them. They had weak stories and even weaker design sense.

What Did I Miss? and Assorted News

Did I miss any of your favorite games from this year? Let me know in the comments section what you liked and didn’t like or if you disagree with 1 of my selections.

Just because I didn’t mention every game that came out on this list, doesn’t mean that almost all the others lacked some redeeming quality. Except for the 2 games I mentioned, I have played every single game that came out this year (forever, I think). If you have any questions, please feel free to ask.

2 games I didn’t mention but that I will do full reviews on at a later date are Fetch and Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened. I’m in the midst of playing both games and they are absolute winners! Fetch was even an Editor’s Choice app of the week in the App Store. However, neither game is a hidden object game, so they seemed a little out of place in the Top 10 I wrote today.

By the way, if you’re waiting for the next Big Fish sale, I think it will be Mother’s Day weekend. I will Tweet and post here as soon as I know.

That’s it for me today. Until later, …

Related Links on iOS Affairs:

 

 

New Game by Hullabu: Dream Day True Love

Dream Day

The pictures and story from Dream Day are said to be based on a true story.

A new hidden object game by Hullabu, the makers of The Great Gatsby: Classic Adventures (free trial version here), celebrates the 70th anniversary of a couple by reliving their entire relationship. Dream Day: True Love is a beautiful alternative to the typical mystery/suspense-style hidden object games that predominate the market.

Dream Day

My favorite-looking hidden object scene in Dream Day.

Don't let the emotional theme fool you, though. Dream Day is full of some tough puzzles and hidden object scenes. It is a really well made and thought out game by Hullabu. Their Great Gatsby game is 1 of my all-time favorite hidden object games (read the full review here)!

The premise of Dream Day involves you as a wedding designer/party planner. You are asked by the son of a couple who will be celebrating their 70th anniversary soon to plan a surprise party. Hijinks and hidden object scenes ensue.

Dream Day

The scrapbook tells the story of the celebrating couple.

The story of Dream Day is told through phone calls from the son and by the couple themselves in voiceovers as you go through their scrapbook, which is where many of the games and hidden object scenes are located. The scrapbook covers every 10 years in the relationship and highlights many of the things going on in the world during those times, as well.

There is 1 story sequence and 4-5 games and hidden object scenes per decade in the scrapbook. In addition, you should also find all the bluebirds in the game to get presents to open at the end of the game and special objects per decade that are kept track of at the top of the book.

Dream Day

My decorated house at the end of the game.

Between decades, the story of you as the party planner continues. You must get the house and yard ready for the party, deal with disasters, and decorate after said disasters inevitably happen. The decorating is fun and something I haven't seen before in this type of game.

Don't worry if you don't collect everything the 1st time through the book. During the bonus section at the end of the game, you have a chance to go back through the book to replay the games and find the things you missed. Once you find everything, you unlock some new sections in the game.

Just like Great Gatsby, Dream Day is a multi-layered game with much to do and be dazzled by.

That's it for me today. Until later, …

Dream Day/Hullabu