Welcome to the 283rd edition of Android Apps Weekly! Here are the big headlines from the last week:
- Google now lets users watch videos for in-app goods. This isn’t a new premise and many games already allow for this. However, Google announced a new set of tools for specifically this purpose. In addition, the ad viewing works in both apps and games instead of just games like normal. This helps users obtain premium features without paying money, a problem Google Play has in comparison to Apple’s App Store.
- Metal Slug Infinity is nearing release. In fact, it’s now available for pre-registration on Google Play. The classic games from the 1990’s were 2D shooters with platformer elements. This new version of the game is an idle RPG. The developers boast original game sounds, graphics, characters and weapons. This takes a lot of the action out of the series and that’s why people liked it to begin with. We’ll see how it turns out upon its official release.
- Google announced some new stats this week. The Play Store bounced over one million apps for pre-release security issues over the last several years. It covers a bunch of potential issues such as SQL Injection, various types of scripting, and various types of injections and hijackings. Most of these apps are legit. They simply had to fix the problem before launching live. You can hit the link for more details!
- Nintendo wants to limit its use of in-game purchases in mobile games. The company does a decent job of it with its own titles. However, it also tells developers working on Nintendo properties to do the same. The company simply doesn’t want to tarnish its reputation over a few extra bucks in the short term. That’s admirable and Nintendo’s current freemium games are highly lauded for their lack of aggression with in-app purchases.
- Google Duplex is making its way to a full-on release. Google announced some promising things about the feature this week. That includes support in 43 out of the 50 states in the U.S. along with a promise to bring the service to every device running Android 5.0 or higher as well as iOS devices with Google Assistant installed. That is just a bunch of good news. In addition, since Google Assistant is the one making the call, it once again takes large leap forward in the whole virtual assistant race.
World of Legends is a new open world MMORPG. Players can recruit and train sidekicks for their adventures, play with friends, and engage in online PvP. None of that is unique, really, but it’s nice to have. The game uses more relaxed graphics along with some goofy animations for a less intense atmosphere. That’s in contrast to most MMORPGs that, well, take things quite seriously. The game is brand new, still in beta, and has some bugs here and there. It should be a decent MMORPG for casuals when it gets all polished up and released.
OH Web Browser is a decent new web browsing app. It boasts easy one-handed use with a cleverly designed UI. The app also boasts no unnecessary permissions. That means it wont’ ask for your location, camera, microphone, or contacts. Some of the other features include an ad blocker, privacy browsing, a PDF converter (because why not), a web archive converter, and a download manager. The UI and the gesture controls take a little bit to get down. However, it’s otherwise a surprisingly ergonomic web browser. It’s still new so there are some things to iron out (like LastPass support), but it’s otherwise quite good.
LifeAfter is a classic freemium survival game. Humanity is wiped out after a deadly virus with only a few survivors remaining. Players must survive in a barren, empty wasteland. NPCs can either be friendly or hostile and it’s basically random. You also scavenge materials, kill monsters, and party up in teams. It’s a surprisingly full game considering the freemium price tag. The shooting mechanics are decent and the game uses a third-person shooter perspective. There are bugs, sure, and the freemium elements exist in this game. However, it’s not half bad for a freemium game.
Calendar Notify isn’t the newest app on the Google Play Store. However, it recently released version 2.0 and the change is actually quite good. This is a calendar companion app. It shows your schedule on your lock screen, notification area, and in widget format. The app boasts a simple design, an advanced editor for more customization, and a backup and restore function. The premium version adds the advanced editor as well as a few other features as well. Thankfully, it’s a one-off purchase and not a subscription. This one is pretty good, especially for people who lean on their calendars a lot.
Jagex launched Old School RuneScape a while ago. It turns out that actual RuneScape is also in the works. It boasts the full RuneScape experience on mobile, but with mobile controls. RuneScape also boasts cross-platform play. Thus, you can play on mobile and switch over to PC whenever you want to and we really love that feature. We didn’t get a chance to test this one because it’s a semi-closed beta and it’s only available to existing RuneScape members at the moment. However, keep an eye on this one, because it’s likely to be one of the best MMORPGs on mobile when it hits the Play Store shelves for real.
If we missed any big Android apps or games news, updates, or releases, tell us about it in the comments! You can also click here to check out our latest podcasts!