Playground Theory’s new Bonsai Slice ($3) has already gotten some press for its unique play mechanics. The game makes players move and swing their iPads around in their hands as if holding a sword. Onscreen, a swinging sword slashes through items to earn points and coins — sort of like Fruit Ninja, but with actual iPad motion, opposed to touchscreen swipes. Some parts of the game even require spinning around with your iPad in hands to slash at the correct items. You can also upgrade your sword by accumulating coins. It’s more fun to watch someone play the game than to play it yourself. First of all, there are way too many bombs to avoid. They do turn into coins, but instead of getting to swing freely, you’re trying to miss the bombs, necessitating more subtle movements, which isn’t as fun. But even those movements can be annoying — you’re forced to watch the items pop up, then physically move your iPad, all while trying to keep your eyes on the screen. It’s a prime recipe for motion sickness.
Bounsy is a new game from karzy. An iOS exclusive, Bounsy is a physics-based game that has players using their fingers to guide a stream of balls to a set target. There are plenty of great physics-based games in the App Store by now, so it’s become tougher to stand out. Bounsy’s issue — which plagues plenty of touchscreen games — is that your fingers and hands cover up too much of the screen. This causes the gameplay to feel a bit more frustrating than it should be, but it might bother some more than others. If you’re looking for another physics game, Bounsy is free to play, and the full version costs $1.
IMDb’s IMDb Movies & TV (free) has updated to version 4.2. The app now tells users when a title is available on Amazon Prime — if you have the Amazon Instant Video app, you can tap a title in the IMDb app to play instantly. US TV listings are also now included within the app, and movie showtimes are now accessible from the title page. The iPhone app also features a new design for the showtimes page.
The Weather Channel Interactive’s app, The Weather Channel, has updated to version 6.0. Redesigned for iOS 7, the app introduces Social Weather, inviting users to share weather conditions in order to improve the forecast for “hard-to-predict spots.” Radar maps are now faster, and improved navigation and design have also come to the app. Note: This is the Weather Channel app designed for iPhone, not The Weather Channel for iPad app.