Carcassonne wins a place in this week's Windows Phone Red Stripe Deals
It’s another week with no new Xbox Windows Phone game. Things could be worse – most of us are probably too busy with Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (and maybe even Throne Wars) to feel Achievement pangs. But a little Xbox Red Stripe Deal action can’t hurt either. This week’s deal is Carcassonne from Exozet Games for 99 cents. Carcassonne was part of a Black Friday sale in 2012 but has never been a Red Stripe Deal before.
The remaining Red Stripe Deals offer some fine gaming choices as well. There’s Action Bowl 2 from Atomic Bullfrog, Duudle from Visiarc, and Mini Dash from PlayCreek – all for 99 cents. Artifex Mundi’s high quality hidden object game Dark Arcana: the Carnival rings up at $1.49, and the handy app Lock Widgets from Windows Phone Hacker is 99 cents too. Descriptions and Store links after the break!
Carcassonne (Windows Phone 7 and 8)
Regular price: $2.99 Sale price: $.99 Download size: 45 MB Store Link
Carcassonne is a board game in which players take turns placing land tiles, trying to build cities, complete roads, and score the most points. Once the tiles run out, everyone’s score gets calculated and the winner emerges triumphant. The core game itself has been translated accurately to Windows Phone and can be very fun.
One big problem though: Carcassonne’s online mode is fairly buggy and unintuitive, nullifying what could be a great selling point. You can still engage in local multiplayer (which would actually be pretty cool on a large device like the Lumia 1520, I bet). But mostly you’ll end up playing against the computer in single-player. Also, a couple of the Achievements will take over 100 hours of grinding.
The multiplayer and Achievement issues always lingered on my mind. A while back, I actually interviewed developer Exozet games in person in order to get to the bottom of them. Check out the revealing interview and don’t miss our full review.
Action Bowl 2 (Windows Phone 8)
Regular price: $1.99 Sale price: $.99 Download size: 46 MB Store Link
This game is really called Action Bowling 2, but the publisher lists it as Action Bowl 2 in the Store for some reason, and thus so shall we refer to it. Sure it sounds like an American football game, but Action Bowl 2 is all bowling, all the time. You don’t get to kick a bowling ball between goal posts or anything fancy like that.
The game features 3D graphics, realistic physics, pass-and-play multiplayer, and a variety of lanes and balls. It’s a bit on the homely side, especially the menu font. I could forgive the game’s looks much easier if it let us tackle the player with the ball, but no such luck.
Dark Arcana: The Carnival (Windows Phone 8)
Regular price: $2.99 Sale price: $1.49 Download size: 252 MB Store Link
Polish developer and publisher Artifex Mundi is well-known for its hidden object puzzle adventure (HOPA) games. Dark Arcana is one such game, blending the adventure genre’s tradition of well-written stories and mystery with puzzle solving and the occasional hidden object scenes.
The story of this one involves a search for a missing woman. She has disappeared into a carnival’s Hall of Mirrors, which actually leads to a dark dimension. Carnivals are spooky places at night, providing Dark Arcana with plenty of atmosphere. We haven’t reviewed this one, but check out our review of Artifex Mundi’s Nightmares from the Deep for a better idea of what to expect.
Duudle (Windows Phone 7 and 8)
Regular price: $1.99 Sale price: $.99 Download size: 4 MB Store Link
Windows Phone doesn’t have an official Pictionary game, but dude! I hear Duudle is the next best thing. Play online games with 3-10 players, taking turns drawing pictures and trying to guess what everyone else’s pictures are. Duudle supports asynchronous play across Windows Phone and Android, so it shouldn’t be hard to find people to play with.
- SINGLE-PLAYER with Leaderboard - Unlimited Duudle Action
- MULTI-PLAYER (3-10 PLAYERS): Play with Friends on Windows Phone 7 and Android (iPhone/iPad coming).
- REPLAY & SHARE DUUDLES: We save all Duudles. Some Duudles will be fun and hilarious. Duudles can be replayed so that you can show them.
- PUSH NOTIFICATIONS: Know when you have Duudle actions! Pin Duudle to the start screen and the Live Tile will let notify you.
- MULTI-LINGUAL APP & DICTIONARIES: Dictionaries: English, French and Swedish (more to come soon)
Mini Dash (Windows Phone 8)
Regular price: $1.99 Sale price: $.99 Download size: MB Store Link
From the makers of Death Worm comes this charming platformer – that’s right, it’s not an endless runner. Mini Dash stars a little bee guy who is totally not one of the Cheetos from Despicable Me. It features simple platforming controls – just left and right movement and a jump button. If you like touch-screen platformers, this is probably one of the better ones.
- TONS OF LEVELS: 3 huge worlds packed with challenges in either ‘Hard’ or ‘Easy’ flavours
- I LOVE VIDEOGAMES: Mini Dash is a love letter to the golden age of videogames with a whole world of ‘retro’ themed bonus levels but totally fresh gameplay
- COLLECT EM’ALL: Collect the mushrooms and purchase new characters like ‘Stickman’, ‘Superstar’ and ‘Zombie Boy’ as well as power-ups and unlocks
- MISSIONS IMPOSSIBLE: From warming up in Boot Camp to becoming an ‘Epic Gamer’, Mini Dash is packed full of missions that will keep you coming back for more!
Lock Widgets (Windows Phone 8)
Regular price: $1.99 Sale price: $.99 Download size: 1 MB Store Link
We all want more stuff on our phones’ lock screens; that’s a fact of life. To really get the most information and numbers and stuff on there, you’ve got to go to apps like Lock Widgets. This one displays the day’s weather, the next day’s forecast, and battery information on the lock screen. The latter is unusual among lock screen apps, so battery fiends will want to give Lock Widgets a look.
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Paul Acevedo is the Games Editor at Windows Central. A lifelong gamer, he has written about videogames for over 15 years and reviewed over 350 games for our site. Follow him on Twitter @PaulRAcevedo. Don’t hate. Appreciate!
Is this how 2014 is going to be, because at this rate we're talking about WP being seriously competitive..... We just need more devices launching in the US, and China.... The OS, services, and ecosystem are fine.. We're just lacking a proper number of devices launching to get the attention of consumer's, and change the attitudes of those pesky store associates...
I sure hope Microkia's plan for 2014 is to increase market share in the US, and China.....