Upcoming iPhone games: MotoHeroz, Bitter Sam, and more

Next week's most promising iPhone and iPad games

Upcoming iPhone games: MotoHeroz, Bitter Sam, and more

Every Friday, we like to finish off the week by looking ahead and talking about the iPhone and iPad games that are just over the horizon.

Next week will see the launch of the iPad 3 - sorry, "the new iPad" - with its 3.1 million-pixel screen, a 5-megapixel camera, and more bands than Glastonbury.

Hopefully, you'll still have a little cash left over to buy one of these hotly anticipated games.

Note: Dates, prices, and features are subject to change at the whim of the developer and Apple's approval team. Dates were correct at time of publication.

By Event Games - coming to iPhone and iPad on March 15th


The original rComplex, a stylish Canabalt-style game with IGF award ambitions, was built in just eight days. But, it took almost three years for the indie app to make the leap to iPhone.

That was, in part, due to a failed Kickstarter pledge drive and a last-minute funding opportunity from publisher InterWave Studios. But, the extra time in publisher limbo has given Event Games time to expand the idea, overhaul the design, and turn it from a tech demo into full game.

The new rComplex is visually striking, inked in bold colours, defined by sharp edges, and presented in silhouette. While your character is essentially just a black shape, his fluid animations give him a surprising amount of realism.

In the game, you run away from an ever-approaching darkness, leaping over obstacles and dodging hazards in eternal evasion. If you manage to keep away from its tentacle grasp for a while, you'll eventually piece together the story, and figure out exactly how you ended up in this predicament.

The game's PR spokesperson confirmed to Pocket Gamer that "March 16th is the launch date. Finally!"

By RedLynx - coming to iPhone and iPad on March 15th (source)


For developer RedLynx, platformers and racers go together like Lionel Messi and goals. Xbox time sink Trials HD was ostensibly about dirt bikes, but you moved through each stage like a slightly tipsy Mario. 1000 Heroz may have been a platformer, but it was all about beating times.

MotoHeroz seems like the purest expression of RedLynx's symbiotic ideal yet. In this game, cartoon cars bounce and leap and flip through side-scrolling levels as you collect coins (like in a platformer) and beat rivals (like in a racer).

There are six vehicles to get to grips with on 30 different tracks, the latter of which you unlock by beating opponents and meeting different challenges in the single-player mode. There are leaderboards to compare your best times with friends, and daily races delivered through the web.

If the game rings a bell, it's because it originally launched on WiiWare towards the end of 2011. It earned some pretty stellar reviews, and ended up with an admirable Metacritic score of 82.

Super Lemonade Factory
By Initials - coming to iPhone and iPad on March 15th (source)


Top tip for indie developers: if your game has a pixel-art aesthetic or a retro sensibility, slap the word 'Super' in the name and you'll have a hit on your hands... guaranteed. It worked for Super Crate Box. It worked for Super Meat Boy. It worked for Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP.

Startup studio Initials obviously hopes to emulate the abovementioned three titles with Super Lemonade Factory, a puzzle-heavy platformer that is draped in chunky pixels and features a chiptune soundtrack.

The game focuses on Andre and Liselot: a married couple who own and operate a soft drinks factory in the tumultuous post-World War II era. Turns out that running a lemonade factory is mostly about sliding heavy crates and avoiding spikes.

It's not all fun and spikes, though. Scratch beneath the bouncy platformer surface to find mature themes like labour relations and the moral dilemmas of running a business in wartime being tackled. You'll touch on those as you discover, and talk to, the game's cast of pixel-high characters.

The developer has come up with 72 levels, but if you think you can do better, you can make your own stages, using the same tools as Super Lemonade Factory's designers. You can then submit them to Initials. The best homemade levels will feature in upcoming updates.

Bitter Sam
By Moon Active - coming to iPhone on March 15th (source)


Sam is bitter. But, you would be, too, if you were kidnapped by a scientist, dangled on a rope, and lowered into the depths of a mysterious laboratory.

To get through each stage alive, you'll need to tilt your iPhone to navigate around dangerous obstacles, and get Sam's tether snagged on pieces of scenery to swing past dangers. You'll also get power-ups to help him survive his journey, like exploding inflatable pigs and speed-boosting anvils.

The goal is to collect crystals, which will bring Sam closer to freedom (and give him a shot at a brighter future), across 100 levels in five different worlds. You'll also want to share your scores on the global leaderboards - you get more points by avoiding walls and obstacles.

The whole thing looks like a sharp mix of Doodle Jump (in reverse) and Cut the Rope. There might be an alarming surfeit of physics-puzzlers on the App Store these days, but we're still open to any game that's carrying a fresh idea.

Mark Brown
Mark Brown
Mark Brown spent several years slaving away at the Steel Media furnace, finally serving as editor at large of Pocket Gamer before moving on to doing some sort of youtube thing.