Welcome to G4's Knuckle Up, where we bring you a byte-sized view of our five favorite mobile games every week. The phone and tablet space is filled with incredible games that will keep you busy for minutes, hours, or even days -- we'll let you know what we're playing and why we're playing it. Here are our top five games this week:



iOS ($4.99)

“Wow.” -- That’s the first word out of our mouths after booting up the iOS port of Bastion on our iPads, and it’s well deserved. If you’re not already familiar with Bastion, it’s the first game from developer Supergiant Games, and it’s been showered in awards and accolades across multiple platforms (XBLA, Steam, Linux, Mac App Store, and even the Chrome Web Store). Now, it’s been brought to the iPad, and it’s just as transcendent.

We don’t want to give too much story away, so we’ll just say this: You’re a kid who’s world is shattered, and you’ll have to work alongside a mysterious stranger to help rebuild it. It’s simple, yet effective, and the interactive dialogue between you and the stranger as “The Kid” progresses through each level is masterful. Oh, and the voiceover for the stranger is downright incredible -- no joke -- and takes Bastion to another level of perfection. He’ll speak reactively as The Kid wanders through the world, offering exhibition and comments that set the mood of the world.

Bastion’s combat system and control schemes have been revamped for the iOS port; they’re very well done, offering a fluid and fun gameplay experience. There are also plenty of upgrades available for different types of weaponry, and any combination of items are viable in combat. Bastion is one of the best games we’ve ever had the pleasure of playing on iOS, so if you’re on the fence about picking it up, we’re telling you to take the leap. You won’t be sorry.

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As we learned yesterday, Amazon has rekindled the Kindle Fire by introducing a new, Kindle HD family of tablets. The idea, of course, is to provide a versatile, powerful tablet at a reasonable price.

To get more information, we caught up with Jay Marine, Vice President, Amazon Kindle, to get a first look at the Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HD 8.9", and the Kindle: Paperwhite.

"Today we introduced Fire HD," Marine told us. "We are really entering the high-end tablet market here. This is extremely advanced hardware. You will not find better hardware or a better tablet out there," he added.

Check it out in the video below:

Amazon's Kindle Fire HD Family First Look Preview »

Tags: Mobile, Tech, Videos

Crytek's First Mobile Game, Fibble, Coming To Kindle FireGame maker Crytek (the people who brought us Crysis) have created their first mobile game. Fibble: Flick and Roll is set for release on the Kindle Fire, Amazon's tablet.

The physics-puzzle game features a "cute but curiously brave extraterrestrial" named Fibble, who crash lands in a suburban home on planet Earth. Fibble becomes separated from his crew as they’re scattered all over the mysterious house. That's where you come in. You help Fibble regroup with his mates, by searching every bit of the house.

Alright. I'm on board.

For more about Fibble, check out the Fibble site. For more about the Kindle Fire, check out our Kindle Fire news.

Wikipad Gaming Tablet Arrives In October For $499

The nifty-looking Wikipad gaming tablet now has an official price and release date: you'll be able to pick one up for yourself at GameStop on October 31, 2012 for $499. The Android-powered device includes a packed in console-style gamepad controller that acts as a sort of dock for the tablet to slot into.

Pre-orders for the Wikipad open on September 7 -- that's today (though there's no product page at the time of this writing) -- on the games retailer's website and in stores. All pre-orders come with a handful of bonuses, including unspecified "full-length game titles" and an issue of Game Informer Digital.

Check out our original Wikipad announcement for more on the upcoming tablet and its capabilities.

MOGA: The Evolution Of Mobile Gaming Controllers

MOGA, the mobile gaming controller for Android phones from PowerA, is the next evolution of mobile gaming controllers. It snaps right on to any Android smartphone, giving you full control over the games you play. Playing games on your phone can be tons of fun, but we think most people would agree, when the game's UI takes up half the screen, it can be a little frustrating. That's exactly where MOGA comes in. We got the chance to give the device a whirl at PAX Prime 2012, and you can read on to see our thoughts.

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Ubisoft's unofficial mascot is ready to make the jump to mobile devices with Rayman Jungle Run. Using the UbiArt framework engine, Rayman Jungle Run will boast the same style as Rayman Origins. Rayman Jungle Run will be a wacky side-scrolling adventure with leaderboards, unlocks, and I imagine lots of bouncing.

Rayman Jungle Run Debut Trailer »

Rayman Jungle Run will be released on September 20, 2012. It will be released on Andriod, and iOS devices.

Assassin's Creed: Utopia Goes Mobile As A City Sim

Players can now look forward to exploring yet another portion of the Assassin's Creed universe in the coming months, with Ubisoft's reveal of the mobile-based spin-off city sim, Assassin's Creed: Utopia. The iOS/Android game sees players building an American colony to serve as a home for Assassins in the New World, with the goal being to keep it safe during the 150 year period between the colony's founding and the eventual revolution (via Eurogamer).

It seems that there are some combat elements to the game as well, with players able to participate in asynchronous 3D battle or team up to take on bigger threats in "limited time epic battles." Utopia shares the same general 17th century setting as Assassin's Creed 3 and Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation, but Ubisoft confirms that the only link for the mobile game is as a lead-in narrative.

Assassin's Creed: Utopia is expected to hit iOS and Android platforms sometime this winter.

Avengers Initiative Official Launch Trailer »

An episodic Avengers game, Avengers Initiative, hits iOS and Android tomorrow.  It will run you $6.99 on the iTunes store and the Android App Store.

Avengers Initiative features beloved Marvel characters, both heroes and villains like Wendigo, Abomination and the Skrulls.As you can see in the trailer above, the first episode features the Incredible Hulk, so get ready to smash, people. In episode one of Avengers Initiative, players assume the role of the Hulk in the wake of a mysterious event known as the Pulse, which has freed hordes of super-powered criminals and monsters from a top-secret S.H.I.E.L.D. holding facility. Players must level up, gear up and smash some of the world’s most notorious villains, including

The story and gameplay that will continue over the coming months with free episodic content featuring more Avengers, so get it, tomorrow.

Jurassic Park Builder lets gamers build their own Jurassic Park. Honestly, do I have to say anything else to convince you buy it right now? If I do, Blair Herter breaks down exactly why hatching dinosaurs, building cages and laying roads for jeeps is more fun than a bag full of raptors!

X-Play Recommends: Jurassic Park Builder for iPad »

I used to play Zoo Tycoon's Dinosaur expansion pack all the time! I need to borrow someone's iPad...for work.

Angry Birds makers have announced their next IP, Bad Piggies. The evil Pigs from Angry Birds are finally getting time in the spotlight, and this time they'll be the heroes. Bad Piggies will be a physics puzzler, similar to its counterpart Angry Birds.

Rovio is attempting to launch the Pigs into their own IP. Fingers crossed Pigs in Space is released next year. In Bad Piggies, the green swine must travel across a desert island to get to those precious eggs. Despite still having egg-lust, these pigs are friendly, bouncing, and dare I say cuddly.

Bad Piggies "Something PIG Is Coming" Teaser Trailer »

Bad Piggies will be released on iOS devices, Androids, PC and Macs on September 27, 2012. It will cost $.99 for mobile devises.

You can read more at Fast Company, who got a sneak peek.

Dishonored: Rat Assassin Announced For iOS -- Fruit Ninja But With Rats!

Dishonored: Rat Assassin has been announced for iOS devices. While gamers patiently await the console and PC release of Dishonored, they'll get to rid Dunwall of its infestation, one rat at a time. I would describe Dishonored: Rat Assassin as Fruit Ninja meets rats. If that's not appealing to you then I'm sorry, I can't help you.

Dishonored: Rat Assassin is available now in the App Store and it's FREE!


Double Fine has announced their next title, Middle Manager of Justice. This marks a change in pace for Double Fine as they prepare to launch this free-to-play iOS title. Middle Manager of Justice combines super heroes and office politics in a way only Double Fine can. The game will allow games to become the new Middle Manager of a branch of the Justice Corp. See what I mean in the trailer below.

Middle Manager of Justice Debut Trailer »

Middle Manager of Justice will be out soon as an iOS title.

That iPhone in your pocket is good for something besides playing video games and taking pictures and texting with your friends, you know. You could actually do something productive with that iPad. You could download a bunch of free apps that will help you be more productive and organized and thrifty, meaning you’ll have more time to play video games and have more of them to play. It pays to be efficient!

Five Free iOS Apps To Get Organized For School

Orchestra To-do will run on your iPhone, iPod touch, or your iPad provided you’re running iOS 4.0 or later. You can add items to the list manually or use voice recognition and speak your to-do items out loud. You can upload your to-do list onto the Orchesta website and keep your smartphone and the site in sync so that you can make changes in either location. You can set reminder alerts for when it’s time to do something. If it’s a task you have to commit repeatedly on a regular schedule, you can set up recurring task alerts.

Orchestra isn’t just a tool for individuals. It can also be used to help groups organize their efforts. Real-time chat supports multiple simultaneous users. You can set up different groups, like one for your family and one for your classmates and one for your World of Warcraft guild to assign tasks accordingly, share lists, and collaborate more effectively.

Read More »

Metal Gear Solid: Social Ops Mobile Game Coming From GREE

The Metal Gear hits keep on coming with news from the game's 25th anniversary event in Japan that GREE will be releasing a mobile game chronicling Snake's adventures, Metal Gear Solid: Social Ops (via Andriasang). The Unity-powered game will be designed by Kojima Productions and developed internally by GREE, with plans for a late 2012/early 2013 worldwide release.

Social Ops runs through stories pulled from previous games in the Metal Gear series. Players will build battalions to do battle with using cards, seemingly a riff on the Metal Gear Acid games. There will also be some kind of focus on building up your Mother Base, similar to what you did in MGS: Peace Walker. Metal Gear Solid: Social Ops will be playable for the first time at Tokyo Game Show.

[pics courtesy of Famitsu]

Archos GamePad Tablet Features Built-In Gaming Controls

French electronics company Archos is taking aim at price-conscious tablet gamers with the newly revealed GamePad, an Android 4.0-powered 7-incher fitted with built in dual analog nubs, a D-pad, face buttons, and shoulder buttons (via The Verge). The clincher is the sub-$200 price tag, with an announced price of "less than €150," which converts to roughly $188 in U.S. dollars.

The device is powered by a 1.5 GHz dual-core processor and features a Mali 400mp quad-core GPU, the same graphics processor used in the Samsung Galaxy Note mini-tablet. Oddly, there's no mention in the press release of screen resolution.

Read More »

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