Diner Dash Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Diner Dash RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network The Five Best Time Management Games for iOS You Need to Get https://www.gameskinny.com/97utv/the-five-best-time-management-games-for-ios-you-need-to-get https://www.gameskinny.com/97utv/the-five-best-time-management-games-for-ios-you-need-to-get Fri, 25 Nov 2016 11:00:01 -0500 SarahKel

Time management games are perfectly designed to hold a player's interest for a short period of time. Players effectively allocate resources in real time, in consequential order to fulfill objectives, whilst reacting to incoming requests to gain rewards. Spend rewards to upgrade resources, then wait patiently for the upgrades to be constructed. 

Whether the player is managing a farm, an airport, or a planet, there are so many different environments for everyone to experience. So we’ve dedicated this listicle to 5 of the very best iOS that are perfect for on-the-go gaming.

Diner Dash

This is the iOS version of the popular game series Diner Dash, where players must seat diners as quickly and as effectively as possible. Players level up their diner to eventually achieve a 5 star restaurant, whilst striving to keep customers happy. Match the colour of customer's clothing to the diner's seat colours for an additional bonus. Undertake general café duties -- handing out menus, drinks and food.

In order to proceed with the game, players can perform a Boost action by either spending the premium in-game currency, which unlocks coffee machines and other appliances that make the game easier; or sit and wait for the items to automatically unlock. The in-game currency is rare, so it’s worth the wait for items to unlock for free.

The career mode for this game is perfect for on-the-go gaming -- as the name suggests, it's a dash to please all customers, then can be left to progress in the player's absence.

Download Diner Dash for iOS for free.

Pocket Planes

This is a great business simulation game, where players purchase and upgrade assets, such as airports, whilst ferrying passengers and assembling planes across the globe. Making money and leveling up ensures that more items can be unlocked and more luxurious items become available, such as a better quality plane.

Players choose a starting region, with a small, humble plane, with the intention of expanding across the world. Assigning work to each winged vessel involves tapping selection buttons -- for example: which plane and to what destination. Select these carefully in order to maximise profit, as more money means the hangar capacity of the airport increases.

Obtaining the in-game premium currency of bux is reasonably easy to acquire, as when players level up, or complete tasks, hidden bux may be found. Spending bux is useful for instantly completing journeys. If players don’t decide to spend bux, then, like all time management games, it is just a case of waiting.

This game is perfect for on-the-go gaming, as it automatically syncs progress to the iCloud, meaning whether the game is played on iPhone or iPad, its there for the player.

Download Pocket Planes for iOS for free.

Disney Magic Kingdom

This is a great time management game set in the Disney universe. The Kingdom has been overrun by dark magic, where Maleficent is the prime suspect. The Kingdom is an amalgamation of Disney parks and players are required to unlock adjoining ‘lands’, where rides, houses and restaurants can be built.

The game is a light park simulation game, where players need to make as many visitors dreams come true as possible. Characters gain Happiness when they reach their desired location and the game's progress is reliant on Happiness. Happiness contributed by characters that have left the park disappears, encouraging players to play often. Time is spent employing characters to perform tasks, which in turn produces the in-game currency of Magic, earns XP, levels up characters and produces superior items. Actions take time to complete, which is beneficial in this game as characters can only perform one action at a time. It’s a great game for Disney fans.

The social media interaction with this game is great for on-the-go gaming, as players can view friends' parks for inspiration and improvements, so the game can be considered even whilst players are waiting for unlocks.

Download Disney Magic Kingdom for iOS for free.

Marvel Avengers Academy

A fun time management game set in the Marvel universe. This game looks great and naturally has a ton of recognisable characters and a ton of content.

Nick Fury is recruiting teenage superheroes to an institution to educate and train them to combat super villains, who are being trained in the rival school, Hydra. To combat Hydra's nefarious schemes, more students are needed and the school needs to rid itself of a mysterious barrier called timefog. This allows more facilities to be built. Employ workers to conduct more tasks and to build more buildings. There are also mysteries in the game, such as why was the school was built so close to the timefog.

If you keep building and keep waiting, it is worth the time to explore this fun game!

The diversely timed missions make this game a great choice for on-the-go gaming, as players can set up longer timed missions, in the knowledge that they won't be able to check in for a while. Yet if a player has a few minutes to spare, they can complete some of the smallest missions too.

Download Marvel Avenger Academy for iOS for free.

Peter Rabbit’s Garden

The illustrations in this game are simply beautiful. It is worth playing simply for the illustrations alone, as it's based in the universe of the author Beatrix Potter.

Peter Rabbit is once again stealing vegetables from Mr. McGregor’s garden, but one day is forced to move away with his mother. Here, a new story unfolds, where the Rabbit family dig plots, plant crops and await their growth, whilst building various structures to provide income. Grown crops can be sold in a variety of locations and this unlocks other characters from the novel series, such as Mrs Tiggywinkle.

To ensure the other characters stay around, buildings must be constructed before a timer expires, or they will have to be re-recruited at a later point. There is a degree of stealth, as Peter still continues to pillage from Mr McGregor.  This is really cute twist on a farming time management game.

This game is great for on-the-go gaming as it is a lovely simplistic, indie game to play for 5 minutes, whilst players appreciate the gorgeous illustrations and visual treat for the eyes. All the while, your childhood is reminisced about.

Download Peter Rabbit's Garden for iOS for free.

So, there we have it...

5 brilliant and very differently themed iOS time management games. Whilst games may share a theme or sub genre, for example, farm management, even within that there is enough differentiation between the titles, as well as each being high quality, for a five minute distraction.

5 Easy Ways To Completely Ruin Any Game https://www.gameskinny.com/p6jb3/5-easy-ways-to-completely-ruin-any-game https://www.gameskinny.com/p6jb3/5-easy-ways-to-completely-ruin-any-game Sat, 20 Jul 2013 22:51:21 -0400 Ask Erin

Number 5: Design for the Top 5% of Your Audience

Game developers everywhere, let me introduce you to a bell curve...

No, no, no. Not a "belle" curve, you nitwits. A bell curve. Bell curve...

marketing bell curve from early adopters to laggards

There you go. A bell curve is a common distribution in which most of your measured population lies somewhere in the middle (like most tomatoes being maybe 3 or 4 inches across), with just a rare few members of the population existing at one extreme or the other (like running across a tomato the size of a watermelon). In the bell curve above, "innovators" (people willing to try a new technology just because it's new, for example) represent only 2.5% of the general population, while "laggards" (people who are highly reluctant to adopt modern innovations, like video games... cell phones... electricity...) represent 16%. Everyone else falls somewhere in between.

My number 5 pet peeve is game development that targets the top 5% of a gaming population while basically ignoring the middle 90%. (That doesn't add up to 100%, smarty pants, because of the bottom 5% at the other end. Now quit being so critical and work with me here.) The top 5% of an MMORPG population plays on $2,000+ machines with blazing internet connections. They live, breathe, and sleep thier favorite game. They play 10 hours a day or more, torso of a human skeletonand they spend the other 6 to 8 waking hours trolling through the game forums and sneaking peaks at game videos on their mobile phone in the middle of class... and dinner... and board meetings... As best I can tell, some of them are on the forums sleep typing, for all the sense they're making, but I digress. My bone to pick here is not with the gamers. It's with the developers.

Game developers love top-five-percenters because these superfans are all over the game forums talking about how awesome and amazing and scrumpdillyspectaculicious the game is, and how they desperately need new content right now or they are going to run screaming into the street or jump out a window in their heart-bursting angst. And, really, who can blame developers for wanting to be treated like stars? But 90% of the gaming population is made up of perfectly decent gamers with perfectly decent machines who don't have enough time to both play the game and be active on the gaming forums, so at the end of the day something like 80-90% of the feedback that developers are getting on the gaming forums is from more like 5-10% of the gaming population. It's no wonder they're getting a skewed view of player preferences.

So, what's the problem with designing for the top players? Dear God what isn't. Graphics are pushed too far for average graphics chips. The speed required to play even in PvE is pushed too far for average internet connections. The time required to gear is pushed too far for average work schedules. The time required to level is minimized to the point of absurdity until the game has almost no story left and becomes all about max level progression. (Yes, minimized. Hardcore gamers--and yes, there are exceptions, but I'm talking as a general population--want alts, alts, and more alts. And they don't want to wait for them.) The list goes on and on. 

The developer loses out too, by the way, because the top 5% of the population in a pay-to-play system accounts for an equally small percent of their overall income. Now, designing for the top echelon in a pay-to-win system at least makes more economic sense because the top 5% are paying a lot more than everyone else, but the resulting play experience is going to be just as miserable for the average player, if not more so.

Number 4: Design for the Bottom 5%

I don't see developers making this mistake as often, but the result is just as bad. Near the end of a game's life cycle, after it has been developing content for the top 5% for too long and has driven away far too many of its middle-of-the-road players, a developer will sometimes flip-flop strategies, trying too hard to fix the problem by doing too much too late, simplifying what was once a complex game to the point of absurdity, in an attempt to cater to the other end of the spectrum and expand their market by attracting younger players. The developer adds things like pandas and pokemon in a complete 180, finally abandoning the voice of the top 5% by catering to the bottom 5%. It's a sign of the end, my friends, a sign of the end.

Number 3: Income-stream Overkill

My number 3 way to kill a game is to push so hard for income streams that the game just stops being fun at all. When you work for three months to get some in-game item and then the very next day the developer offers something that looks even cooler for the bargain price of $9.95 you have to ask yourself what's the point of playing? If I wanted to spend my online free time spending real life money to try to look as cool as the next gal I'd spend my afternoons cruising Piperlime for boot sales. 

Just as bad is the game developer that moves a solid PC title onto a mobile platform, making it free to download but then ungodly difficult to get that perfect score without "powerups" that you have to buy... and buy... and buy... (Can you say Diner Dash?) Yeah, let's take a perfectly decent casual title and turn it into a black hole of death just waiting to suck a gamer's money down into its greedy maw. Enough said, I think.

Number 2: Deviate from Your Core Identity

Every game has a core look, a core play style, a core feel that first attracts the people who come to love it. But sometimes a game's very popularity can become its downfall. Suddenly the developer is getting user requests all over the map, pulling them in a thousand different directions. If the developer doesn't have a core vision that it can stick to against the rising tide of clamoring players, it's going to be tempted to try to be everything to everyone and end up being nothing but a hodge-podge of gaming cliches that don't even hold together.

Add animals! Add pets! Add facebook! Add twitter! Add achievements! Add leader boards! Add motorcycles to the medieval castles! Add castles to the racetrack! Add a racetrack on my farm! Add a farm to my training camp! Add a training camp to my pirate ship! Add a pirate ship to my land-locked fortress!


The only game in the world that could really work being this eclectic is Disney's upcoming Infinity, rated E for Everyone, by the way, 10 and up because of some cartoon violence. If you're not Disney, you can't get away with it. Pick a direction and stick with it.

Number 1: Bad Interface Design

As bad as all of the above gaffes are, none is as bad as a poorly designed interface--period--making this my number one pet peeve in bad game design. When you enter the gaming world for the first time, getting around should be intuitive. Even if achieving a game objective is difficult, navigating the interface shouldn't be.

Let's look at two examples. First, the bad: James Cameron's Avatar, The Game. I'm not talking The Avatar from the cartoon series. I'm talking the one from the movie. Oh, right, they were both movies. But I'm talking about the movie with the tall blue aliens. Yes, that one. I loved that movie. When the game came out on Playstation 3 I just had to have it. I bought it when it was first published, at full price, which I almost never do, because I just couldn't wait to be immersed in that world. Only immersed was a little too like it. As in immersed over my head. As in drowning.

I love a game that makes me think, but I want to be forced to think about problems inside the gaming world--how can I get around that mountain?--how can I open this treasure box?--not, which of these stupid buttons is forward again?

Now compare that to Call of Duty MW3, a game I picked up on something of a whim since I don't usually go for first-person shooters. The first thing I ever did in the game was to PvP as a level 1 in a death match with a ton of level 80's. I got decimated, obviously, but at least I could move around. Within moments I could run, I could shoot, I could duck, I could reload, all without ever thinking about it again.

Sure, I sprayed about 37 bullets in the general direction of a level 80, who calmly turned around and one-shotted me in the face while running backwards and jumping over a retaining wall. But at least I understood what happened. That's a place you can learn from.

So please, game developers around the world, I'm begging you. Even if you insist on designing for the top or bottom 5% of your audience; even if you add so many income streams to your revenue plan that I can't turn around without stumbling over something else to buy; even if you introduce elves and engineers, pandas and motorcycles into the same gaming universe; please, please, at least make it easy for me to find my damn sword and point it at something appropriate.