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brain challenge

Nokia has been known to run various gaming promotions since it came to Windows Phone a couple of years ago. Most obviously they sponsored the production of more than 20 Xbox Windows Phone games; titles that we probably would never have gotten otherwise. There was also a brief period last year in which a non-Xbox version of Sonic CD became available for Lumia owners. We never found out why the giveaway game lacked its Xbox features, nor would Nokia comment on it.

Fourteen months later, it looks like Nokia has a new promotion going on. Owners of some very specific handsets (Nokia Lumia 625, 1020, 1320, Icon, and 1520) can get free versions of nine games from mega-publisher Gameloft! These aren’t stripped down versions, either. They’re the full Xbox titles with working Achievements, albeit with different Store pages than the general versions. Head past the link for more details on how to find the free games!

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Earlier this week, three Xbox Windows Phone 7 titles from Gameloft suddenly got delisted from the Store. It’s not totally unusual for games to be delisted; at the end of September a record-setting 11 games received the same treatment. But most of those games handled In-App Purchases (IAPs) via now-defunct Microsoft Points. None of the newly pulled Gameloft games had IAPs.

The main thing these latest delisted games had in common (besides their publisher and being Windows Phone 7 launch titles) is that all three went on sale on September 26, the same week as the mass IAP delisting. Head past the break for details and our speculation as to what happened.

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Older Xbox Windows Phone physics puzzle game iBlast Moki is the Red Stripe Deal of the Week, and that’s cool. Wouldn’t you like some more games to go on sale though? Of course you would! And you’re getting your wish, buddy. Three more games have their prices knocked down to 99 cents for the week!

Don’t get TOO excited just yet though. The three sale games are all older Gameloft titles: Assassin’s Creed: Altair’s Chronicles, Brain Challenge, and UNO HD. All three games were just on sale in June, along with a larger selection of titles. But they cost two bucks at that time and only one buck now, so this IS a better sale.

Head past the break for descriptions and Store links!

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The Xbox Red Stripe Deal of the Week doesn’t update until Thursday, but that doesn’t mean you won’t find a new Xbox Windows Phone deal today. The good folks at Gameloft are running a little sale of their own, with almost every single one of their titles marked down in price. The best deals of the bunch have to be The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises for three bucks apiece - those games only came out in March!

Full list with descriptions and store links after the break.

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Yesterday we reported that Full House Poker is the Xbox Live Deal of the Week. It still is, but we’ve learned something unusual. Something magical… There are four Xbox Live games on sale this week instead of one. Madness! Joining Full House Poker (on sale for $1.99) are Puzzle Quest 2, Brain Challenge, and Gamechest: Logic Games. These are weekly sales, not price drops.

Puzzle Quest 2 from Namco Bandai is on sale for $4.99, down from $6.99. Like Castlevania Puzzle, PQ2 is a puzzle role-playing game. It’s got beautiful art, multiple playable characters, and a lengthy quest, plus a few tough (due to their luck-based nature) Achievements. If you like Bejeweled and RPGs, you really can’t do any better. We’ll have a full review soon (long game!).

Brain Challenge from Gameloft is on sale for $2.99, down from a ludicrous $4.99. BC is a collection of brain-teasing minigames that you should be wary of. It sports an amazing five Broken Achievements, and has yet to receive an update. Seriously, Brain Challenge is buggier than an entomologist's laboratory.

Gamechest: Logic Games is on sale for $1.99, down from $2.99. It includes three different games: chess, sudoku, and Minesweeper. Sure, free versions of Minesweeper and Sudoku are already available on Xbox Live, but what about chess? Our review praises the chess game’s multiplayer feature, which allows a Windows Phone player to compete against a PC player asynchronously. Certainly a good idea, though the implementation is so rudimentary as to not be worth the effort.

Gamechest: Logic Games also boasts a leveling system in which players earn experience and level up by winning games. But to reach the max levels in each game and earn all of the Achievements requires a horrendous amount of grinding. Never have I been more bored with a game than when toiling after Gamechest: Logic Game’s Achievements, and that’s not hyperbole.

At any rate, it’s great to see more than one Xbox Live game on sale this week. Let’s hope Microsoft makes a habit of this! You can find Full House Poker here (Zune link), Puzzle Quest 2 here, Brain Challenge here, and Gamechest: Logic Games here on the Marketplace.

Thanks for the tip, DarkSynopsis!

UPDATE: Brain Challenge is part of the sale too.

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Broken Xbox Live Achievements on Windows Phone

For many gamers, Xbox Live Achievements are the Windows Phone platform’s main selling point. They provide primary and secondary goals to strive for in games. They also make it easy for other people to see what you’ve accomplished. Earning Achievements contributes to GamerScore – an overall score that quantifies a person’s accomplishments across Xbox 360, Windows Phone, and Games for Windows Live games. It’s a brilliant and addictive system.

Except when something goes wrong. Despite the apparently rigorous testing that games undergo during the Xbox Live certification process, sometimes a game is released with one or more with unobtainable Achievements. We call an Achievement broken or glitched when it is impossible for gamers to unlock through any means.

Why are glitched Achievements a big deal? As I said, people get addicted to earning Achievements. Obsessive compulsive types eat them up. People who really buy into the Achievement system sort of calculate the full 200 GamerScore into a game’s purchase price. They feel ripped off if they can’t get the full 200 no matter what they do. Even for less compulsive gamers, it can be frustrating to go through the effort to satisfy an Achievement’s unlock conditions and find that it didn’t unlock.

Head past the jump for the full list of broken Xbox Live Achievements and what’s being done to fix them.

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The Windows Phone Marketplace is quickly approaching 1,000 apps which has a large contingency of gaming titles. Gameloft has posted a video over at their Youtube channel highlighting a few of their HD titles that will be available for the Windows Phone 7.

The teaser video highlights Earthworm Jim, UNO, Assassin's Creed: Altair's Chronicles, Brain Challenge and The Oregon Trail. All look really good, especially Assassin's Creed.

November 8th can't get here quick enough.

via mobilitydigest.com

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