Archive for the 'SlickTiger and the iPad2' Category


iPad Game Review: Kingdom Rush Frontiers

I was pretty fired up when I found out that Ironhide Studios was making a sequel to Kingdom Rush, because as a general rule game sequels (unlike movie sequels) are almost always better than their predecessors.

Making a game better than one of the best iPad games I’ve ever played is no easy feat. If you haven’t played Kingdom Rush, do yourself a favour. It is honestly one of the tightest games I’ve ever played.

Could Kingdom Rush: Frontiers top its predecessor? Could lightning strike the same flippin game twice? The answer is a resounding YES from your Tiger Pal, and here’s why…

First off to the uninitiated, KR:F is a classic tower defence game where you build defences on designated building sites along a pathway with the aim of destroying any bad guys walking along that pathway before they get to the end point.



It’s a simple premise, but trust me, shit ramps up pretty fast and before you know it, you’re elbows-deep in strategy, trying to figure out the most effective way to take the bad guys down and prevent them from bulldozing a path through your defences.

As with the first KR, you can choose one of four basic towers to build: Archers, Barracks, Mages and Dwarven Artillery.

Each has its own merits and weaknesses, adhering to classic gaming archetypes (ie. archers are quick but deal out low damage, barracks produce soldiers that can take punishment but also deal low damage, mages deal high damage but are slow and dwarves deal the highest damage but are the slowest).

What makes the game highly addictive though are the vicious enemies the developers think up to throw one spanner after the next into your carefully thought-out defence strategy and the awesome way the towers upgrade.



After you’ve upgraded a tower three times, you get the option of changing it into one of two specialist towers. The new specialist towers in KR:F are:

  • The Assassin’s Guild and the Knights Templar for the Barracks
  • The Crossbow Fort and the Windwalkers Totem for the Archer Tower
  • The Necromancer Tower and the Archmage Tower for the Mage Tower
  • The Battle-Mecha T-200 and the DWAARP for the Dwarven Artillery

Once you’ve created a specialist tower, it can be further enhanced with a number of special abilities to kick some serious bad guy ass.

The Crossbow Fort for example can be given the special ability to fire multiple flaming arrows at enemies, it’s like a burst of baddie-annihilating machinegun fire.

The Windwalkers Totem can be given special abilities that amplify damage and remove any magical spells the bad guys cast on their henchmen to make them more powerful.

It’s a water-tight system made even more awesome because of the incredible attention to detail Ironhide has put into this game. Finish a level having let 2 or less bad guys through and you get three stars which you can use to boost your various  towers’ abilities even further.

This gives you more than enough incentive to keep at the levels until you ace them and to play the levels at the two higher difficulty levels (Heroic and Iron Challenge) for an additional two stars.

What’s great about KR:F is that they’ve overhauled the entire Hero system and made it MUCH better than in the original KR game (you can choose one hero to fight alongside your army who typically deals a shiteload of damage and is a huge asset).



This time around, your Hero levels up steadily throughout the game instead of only levelling up during a level and then starting from level 1 again on the next level. Also, as they level up they get skill points you can assign to different abilities to make them even more badass.

What I also liked about KR:F is that there are six new non-upgradeable towers that are available on different levels where you can buy everything from genies to legionnaires to corsairs and Spear Maidens.

They’ve also introduced a lot of fun, random things into the game like a monkey on one of the levels that throws bananas at the bad guys, a giant desert worm that surfaces periodically on one of the levels and devours anything (good guys and bad guys alike) in its path and giant man-eating carnivorous plants on another level.

They levels play out first in desert setting, moving to uncharted jungle and ending in underground caves full of crocodile-men out to fuck your shit up.



It’s a great game by anyone’s standards. My only complaint are the goddamn in-game purchases which, in some instances, cost more than the game itself.

There are currently 9 Heroes in the release version of the game of which three are unlockable and the other six you have to buy. There is also a shop available for idiots who need to buy things like dynamite and nukes to help them finish the levels (granted, they do get VERY tricky, but c’mon! There is no excuse for buying stuff so you can finish the game quicker, it doesn’t make logical sense – you’re paying to finish a game faster and ultimately, enjoy it for a shorter period of time).

I think they should unlock more heroes or bring down the cost to buy them. The best hero available, the dragon Ashbite, costs $6.99! What a joke!

That aside, you’ll still get plenty enjoyment out of the three unlockable Heroes in the game, so buying additional ones is not essential to completing the game in any way.

The game costs $2.99 for the normal version and $4.99 for the HD version from the iStore.

Final verdict: 9/10



iPad Game Review: Badland

badlands-icon-100032922-largeLookit your Tiger pal, banging out these flippin’ quality posts just like the old days – reviewing the shit out of shit, helping you guys find rad things to ram into your hungry little brains, what a badass!

Now that I’ve completed the creative writing course I was toiling away at for the past ten weeks, I have slightly more time to dedicate to this site, which I’m pretty happy about.

Believe it or not, every time I have to just repost a funny video to ensure there’s a constant stream of posts on this site, I die inside a little. But enough of that, let’s talk about BADLAND, the raddest iPad game you’ve never played.

I decided to splurge on the $3.99 this game cost based purely on the game’s cool-looking icon in the App Store (which I enlarged and posted above). Which is kinda like judging a book by its microscopic little cover.

Obviously the name sounded compelling as well and yes, I did scroll through some screen shots, eventually deciding fuck it, why not? There’s only so long you can sink countless months into Clash Of Clans before you start to get over it.



So I did it and 121MB later I was completely immersed in one of the best iPad games I’ve ever played.

BADLAND is beautiful (literally) in its simplicity. There is no complicated story or convoluted plotline to follow, there are no cut-scenes, there isn’t really a story in any form whatsoever.

You play as this weird little feathery round guy who, despite his distinctly poor aerodynamic design, must fly through one side-scrolling level after the other without being squashed, spiked, shot or left behind by the continually panning screen.

There also aren’t any controls. You touch the screen and he flies up, you stop touching and gravity does its thing. It is literally that simple.



I’ll admit that if it weren’t for the jaw-dropping rich background visuals, eerie atmosphere and incredible physics, it’s unlikely I would have carried on playing past the third level.

Which is the long way of saying the game starts out ridiculously easy. Don’t be fooled, it scales up quickly and before you know it the game’s throwing curveballs that are so devilishly wicked, you can’t help but enjoy it more and more despite the fact that, well, you keep dying.

Then the power-ups start coming thick and fast and with each one, the gameplay dynamic takes a drastic turn.



The only fault I can find with this game is that I know I’m going to finish it soon and that thought depresses me so much I’m actually rationing the number of levels I play everyday.

If you just play to complete the levels you’ll probably get through them in about 8 – 10 hours of uninterrupted play.

However, if you want to “three-star” (or in this case, “three-egg”) the levels, that takes considerably longer and adds at least another 15 hours to the gameplay.

With future updates planned, I have no doubt they’ll unlock a host of new levels later this year, but for the meantime if you’re looking for a highly entertaining game with stunning graphics and cleverly thought-out, addictive gameplay, you can’t go wrong with BADLAND.

Final Verdict: 9/10



The Three Types Of iPad Games

iPad-mini-blackI must be one of the biggest dooses on the planet when it comes to owning an iPad.

I mean here you have this super effective tool that can streamline your entire life, it can basically turn you into a super-human with the right combination of apps and what do I use mine for?

Games. Shitloads of games.

Oh, and FlipBoard – that app rocks. But if you had to take those two things off my ipad, all it would be is a very expensive paperweight.

On the odd occasion I take it into meetings and people are like, “What cool apps do you have?” I always flip the cover back on guiltily and bark “NOTHING!” before it’s too late and they realise what a dork I am.

So I’d say I’m pretty well-versed when it comes to iPad games, having played and completed more than I can remember but I’m not sure how much longer that’s going to be the case because I swear to God iPad games are designed to do one thing and one thing only – take your money.



Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, so here’s a breakdown of the 3 different kinds of iPad games out there, listed from the best kind to the worst kind:

1. Free games that are rad and don’t bleed you dry:

These are the best kind of iPad games and the rarest to actually find.

These days, if an iPad game is free you can almost bet your bottom dollar that you will get bent over the table by “in-app purchases” and bombarded with ads for other games by the same publisher until your eyes bleed.

Some examples of rad free games that are challenging to play but not impossible to complete without spending money on in-app purchases are:




One of the first games I got for my iPad. Sure, you can spend real money on unlocking the weapons but it’s not too tricky to unlock everything in the game if you put in the hours.

The gameplay is pretty straight-forward, you drive down a highway, tilting the iPad to steer and shooting / smashing zombies into the other cars around you as they latch onto your car and try to tip it over.

Also, it has arguably one of the best taglines I’ve read on a game in ages: “Your goal is to survive. But you won’t".




A game I downloaded over Christmas and immediately got hooked on. Again, the premise here is simple – you’re a shark whose life slowly drains unless you eat EVERYTHING YOU SEE!

As you feed, your shark levels up and gets bigger. Once you’ve hit level 10, the next shark is unlocked. Eating golden fish / turtles / humans gives you coins that you use to increase your speed, bite and boost.

Sure, the game does have a gem system where gems are notoriously difficult to come by but can buy you some cool added stuff in the game, but it’s not essential to buy any of this stuff to complete the game.

Again, this game is just challenging enough that you won’t crack it in under 10 hours but not so much so that it’s impossible to complete without spending real money.



2. Free games that are rad and DO bleed you dry

“Hey wow, this game looks SICK! And it’s FREE! How motherflippin’ awesome is that?!”

Pretty awesome. Until you’ve been playing the game for a few hours and start to realise that it’s fucking impossible to get anywhere without spending real money!

Here’s the best example that comes to mind…




Clash Of Clans is currently the top grossing game in the iStore because why? Because it’s the sneakiest fucking iPad game you’re ever likely to find.

In the game there are three basic forms of currency: gold, elixir and gems. Gold and elixir you can mine (at a painfully slow rate), but gems you can only get for completing goals and moving random rocks and trees from your map and when you do so, you get them in tiny quantities.

It’s a classic strategy game where you build a village, train up troops and attack other clans. The graphics are pretty awesome and the gameplay is fun so it’s easy to get hooked.



Here’s the rub though – each time you upgrade one of your buildings / defences in the game, it takes slightly longer that the time before.

At first it’s a small amount of time; maybe 10 / 15 minutes. Even then you’re like “What, 15 real minutes or 15 game minutes?” Yeah, it’s 15 REAL minutes of watching something upgrade. Woo. Hoo.

So you go make yourself a cup of coffee and come back and hey presto it’s done, no biggie.

BUT that 15 minutes soon becomes 30, then an hour, then 12 hours, then 1 day, then 3 days, then I shit you not 4 days to fucking upgrade something!

Of course, you can speed the entire process up to happen instantly IF you spend gems, but to give you an idea, a 3-day upgrade needs about 500 gems to speed up. If you buy a “Pile Of Gems” (the smallest amount you can buy, 500 gems) it costs you $4.99.

So you’ve just paid R45 to upgrade your imaginary gold mine. What. The. Fuck?

Tell me you feel that!



Games like this are becoming all to frequent, but they’re not the worst kind.

The worst kind is…

3. Games you PAY FOR and that BLEED YOU DRY

The worst kind. You fork out a good $5 for a game thinking, this looks awesome and I’m pretty sure isn’t going to fleece me for every cent I have because, you know, I’ve already paid for it.

Wrong again bucko. That amount you forked out was just a down payment. If you really want to get anywhere in this game you better be ready to fork out some serious cashola.

A prime example is:


Infinity Blade is not a cheap game. You’re looking at $5.99 to buy the first one and $6.99 for the second and it’s a big download (595MB). But man-o-man is it an awesome game.

The graphics are stunning, the hack-and-slash gameplay is awesome and the enemies scale up in difficulty perfectly as you progress into the game.

Then shit starts slowing down BIG TIME.

The only way you can level up in the game is through the items you carry. The experience points you accumulate when you kill enemies goes into your items until they fill up to the max and you master them.



Problem is, once something is mastered, any experience points that would have gone into that item are immediately forfeited. In other words, once an item is mastered it immediately becomes almost useless because it can no longer fill up with experience points.

Your only choice is to wait to pick up another unmastered item or buy one using the gold you collect in the game. Of course, the cost of the items in the game far outweighs the amount of gold you pick up so once again, you’re forced to use real life money to buy fake money.

Or you just slowly and painfully collect gold while all your rad items max out and you stop levelling up almost entirely.

iPad game developers need to sort their shit out and stop making games whose only purpose is to extort money from us.

I don’t mind paying even up to $7 or $8 for a game as long as the game is awesome and I don’t get eyeball-raped by ads or made to spend more money because the difficulty level has scaled up from “retardedly simple” to “insanely difficult” after 5 hours of gameplay.

Cool examples of games like these include Kingdom Rush, Machinarium, The Remade Monkey Island Games and Contre Jour.

Other iPad games could learn a thing or two from those titles.



iPad Game Review: Kingdom Rush

kingdom rush squareI heard about Kingdom Rush from a tweet I picked up from @wobblyonion, managing editor of, who tweeted that while he generally doesn’t play iPad games, he was going batshit for Kingdom Rush.

I hit up the iStore to read some user reviews and was pretty blown away by the fact that EVERY REVIEW published had given the game 5 stars.

There had to be a catch. There’s no way an iPad game could legitimately get 5 star reviews across the board. Thing is, having played it for the last 3 weeks I can vouch for it. It IS legit. Kingdom Rush is that awesome. And here’s why.

In a nutshell

Kingdom Rush is a tower defence game, meaning you build different towers at specific points along a pathway to stop the advancing hordes of bad guys who get bigger, faster and meaner with every oncoming “wave”.

Your four basic tower types are Archery, Barracks, Mage’s Guild and Artillery. Each has different strengths and weaknesses that follow standard RPG lore.



The Archery Towers don’t do a lot of damage but are fast, Barracks towers deploy troops that engage and slow down the badguys, but unless you upgrade them the troops die quickly, Mage’s Guilds do medium damage but are slower than Archery Towers and Artillery Towers do massive damage but are the slowest of the lot.

Your placement of your towers is crucial in deciding the outcome of a level, as is your choice of which tower to upgrade when. Upgrade a tower three times and on the fourth upgrade, two new tower types become available.

So instead of just making standard troops, on your fourth Barracks upgrade you can turn it into a Barbarian Hall, which makes axe-wielding Barbarians, or a Holy Order that spits out armour-clad Paladins.



You are given a set amount of gold at the beginning of a level to get started and you earn more gold with every bad guy you obliterate.

Ideally, you don’t want more than one or two bad guys at the most to make it through the gauntlet of towers you set up. Get this right and you’ll earn 3 stars at the end of every level.

You then use those stars to buy permanent upgrades for your towers that increase the strength of your attacks and reduce the amount of gold it costs to build them, a sneaky incentive to make you want to ace every level.



What makes it awesome

The attention to detail in this game and the tight-as-a-drum level and character design are what make Kingdom Rush awesome.

It also scales up in difficulty enough that it doesn’t scare you off from the outset, but does offer a solid challenge that veteran gamers will sink a good couple of hours / days / weeks into.

What I also loved is that an update was recently released for the game that allows you to unlock “Hero” characters once you’ve earned 15 stars. These characters level up and add a nice extra layer to the gameplay. The only downside is that three of the six heroes have to be bought for $0.99 once you’ve unlocked them, but to be honest I’ll gladly chip in the extra $2.97 for this awesome game.


TOTAL TIME SPENT PLAYING: I’d estimate I’ve sunk about 30 or 40 hours into this game so far and still have about another 15 or 20 to go before I’ve unlocked the whole game
FINAL VERDICT: I love the quote Jayisgames gave Kingdom Rush: “Kingdom Rush can be filed in the thin folder marked ‘games that are pretty much perfect’”. I agree 100%. If you have an iPad why are you still reading this? Go buy this game immediately and smash it in your FACE!



Brilliant App For Music Lovers

mzl.skszqkpl.175x175-75If there’s anything that having an iPad and frequenting the app store almost daily has taught me, it’s the value of the “Staff Favourites” section.

It’s there that I discovered this radass music app called “Band Of The Day” that is free to download and is literally changing my life every time I use it.

The app is brilliant in its simplicity – it’s like an advent calendar full of cool bands with a new one uploaded every day to sink your teeth into and trust me, these are not your run-of-the-mill bands everyone knows already. In the entire month of March there was one band I’d heard of.

Selecting a band brings up a menu of options where you can access reviews of their latest album, bios of the band, Q&As (sometimes), a list of all their albums and videos and a player that streams some of their tracks.



With some bands the player is limited to three or four tracks, but in some cases there are eight or more tracks to listen to which, considering it doesn’t cost a cent, is pretty damn sweet.

The first time I fired the app up I lost myself for a good hour or so, trawling March’s bands and finding some very cool shit.

The “Buzz” option in the menu is also really sick – it pulls all the recent Tweets mentioning the band you’re listening to so you can see how may mentions they’ve been getting and what people are saying.



You can of course tweet and post to Facebook straight from the app as well to share new bands with your networks.

The only issue I’ve had using the app has to do with my ropey 3G connection which results in songs stopping while they buffer, but otherwise I literally cannot find fault with this killer app.



SlickTiger Gets His Mits On Angry Birds Space. Kisses Life Goodbye

angry-birds-space-launch-trailerI got the original Angry Birds on my Nokia N8 to kill some time when I was waiting for important life-stuff to happen and ended up getting hopelessly addicted to it for about a week or so.

Even after that I’d still revisit levels and shoot for 3 stars on them just for the hell of it. The physics were water-tight and there’s no denying I got a kick out of destroying shit and popping green pigs.

Then two weeks ago I read that NASA had partnered with Rovio for the newest instalment in the franchise, Angry Birds Space and, 3 days into playing it, I can honestly say the results are nothing short of brain-meltingly awesome.

If I was single, I have no doubt I would be elbows-deep in this game right now, but I’ve had to ration my playing to avoid BECOMING single, so as I write this, I’m about to finish “Pig Bang”, the first of two worlds (“Cold Cuts” is the second) that make up Angry Birds Space.



There is a third world called “Danger Zone” that can be unlocked with an in-app purchase (although on the iPad version I bought, it came unlocked) for hardcore Angry Birds fans who want to experience some insanely difficult gameplay.

The premise is the same as previous Angry Birds games. You fire birds in a slingshot to create domino-effect destruction on a massive scale in an effort to pop some smug little (and not-so-little) green pigs.

However, the massive change with Angry Birds Space is the way they’ve tweaked the gravity to make for an amazingly addictive and challenging gaming experience.

When firing birds in space their trajectory is dead straight, but the minute they enter an asteroid’s gravitational field their trajectory warps significantly. Depending on their angle of entry, this can result in them orbiting an asteroid at breakneck speed only to smash some piggy structures into splinters in the most satisfying way imaginable.



They’ve also thrown some new twists into the game in the form of “Eggsteroid” levels you can unlock by finding and smashing the golden eggs strewn about the normal levels.

These unlockable levels take the form of popular old-school games like Mario and Space Invaders and add a nice additional dimension to this addictive-as-crack demolition physics masterpiece.

You also get randomly awarded Space Eagles, which open up gigantic black holes, sucking those smug green basterds into piggy oblivion.

The new birds on the block are the ice birds who freeze the pigs and structures they collide into, thus making them more brittle for your other birds to decimate.



I really don’t think I need to bang on about this game for much longer. Buy it, play it and if shit gets too intense, swing by First Methodist on Tuesday nights. We have a group that kicks off at 7.00pm – the coffee is free but if it’s your first time, all we ask is that you introduce yourself to the rest of the group.

Admitting you have a problem is purely voluntary Winking smile



SlickTiger Learns the Fine Art Of Bashing Zombies Into Parked Cars

4a122b1d01e3a3f5dcae480f078cbb47You could do a pretty interesting study on why so many people in our generation have a total fixation on zombies.

For me, there’s just something about the entire system grinding to a complete halt that kinda appeals to me. No more mundane routines, no more work pressures, none of that fabricated bullshit would matter anymore.

Of course, you’d live every moment in blood-curdling fear and probably have to do some pretty unspeakable shit to stay alive, but as long as you’d done your homework, watched every zombie movie known to man and played games like Zombie Highway, you’d definitely survive at least a week or two.

See, Zombie Highway (available for free on iPads from the iTunes ap store) is an entire game based on those classic scenes from movies where the bad guy is clinging to the car and the good guy is bashing the car against all manner of shit to get him / it off.

The gameplay is dead simple (yes, I just did that). You drive down a long, straight highway while zombies jump out of nowhere and cling onto the side of your car.



When this happens you can either slam the zombies against conveniently-placed barricaded cars or feed the basterds some lead salad by touching circles on either side of your car which turn red when a zombie grabs onto the car.

The downside of just shooting them of course is you very quickly run out of ammo and then you’re completely fucked. Before you know it, your car will be flush with zombies and when that happens they start rocking your car until it tips and then it’s warm brains all round.



As you get further along the highway and destroy more zombies, you unlock more weapons, levels and cars. The zombies also get stronger and regenerate health which is a total bitch once your ammo runs dry.

It all sounds pretty mundane, but trust me, you can easily sink three hours into this game without even breaking a sweat.

Bashing zombies into shit is possibly one of the most satisfying things I’ve ever done in a game, and for that reason I’m stopping this post right now.

It’s cutting into my zombie-bashing time.

TOTAL TIME WASTED: At least 8 hours and counting… 
FINAL VERDICT: If you own an iPad or iPad2, there’s no conceivable reason why you shouldn’t download this game. It’s smaller than 20MB, doesn’t cost a cent and is awesome. Case closed.



SlickTiger And The iPad2 – the Saga Continues

redneckHi and welcome to the second instalment of a series of posts I’m planning on writing about my new iPad2 from the perspective of a complete tech retard.

When we last left off, your trusty narrator and host SlickTiger had just fired up his shiny new iPad2 3G for the first time when he encountered his first major hurdle – no micro SIM card.

Micro SIMs are identical to normal SIMs, only about 2 thirds the size. Not too sure why Apple decided you need these irritating little things, but apparently it’s the same for iPhones.

The good news is you can actually cut a regular SIM card to make it fit, but be sure to read this blog post first so you don’t fuck it up because I know you, all gung-ho, a meat cleaver clenched in your fist, just itching to cut your SIM cards up.

Be cool daddy-o. You own an iPad2 now, you’re better than everyone so start acting like it.

I decided not to go the SIM card cutting route and instead investigated getting an iPad2 data package through 8.ta because I got a tip off from my main man Callegari that they are the only network that currently have official iPad data packages and their data rates are pretty cheap.



Fast forward to Saturday morning and I’m sitting at the 8.ta shop on Adderley Street, iPad2 in hand with all the RICA docs the website said to bring only to be told that they can’t help me when it comes to anything iPad related because no one in the store has done the training yet.

Brilliant! You offer a product that no one in the shop is qualified to sell! Sheer genuis!

Even better than that is the fact that the sales dude then asked me where we lived so he could check what the coverage in our area (Vredehoek) is like which I’m really glad he did because there is none.


Next stop was the 4u Vodashop in Gardens Centre where my main man Ahmed hooked me up with a micro SIM (R210 on contract) and 1.5GB monthly data package for R249 in no time.

He said to try the data SIM in about 4-6 hours as they take a little while to activate. Twenty hours later, my iPad was still saying “You are not subscribed to a data service” every time I tried to fire up the 3G which was driving me fucking nuts.

Turns out all I had to do was get into “Settings”, select “Mobile Data”, hit “APN Settings” and enter the word “internet” in the APN field.

I hard boot the iPad and next thing I know, BOOM! I got the whole wide world in my hands.

From there with two touches I was in the iTunes app store, browsing the top free apps. Moments later I was downloading Zombie Highway and that’s pretty much as far as I got because if there’s anything radder than owning an iPad2, it’s using it to smash zombies against cars whilst popping round after round into their soft, brown skulls.



NEXT UP: SlickTiger reviews Zombie Highway and reveals the first downside of using a 3G connection on an iPad2.