Jewel Craft Presents Thought-Provoking Puzzles That Keep You on Your Toes

Price: $2.99     Score: 9/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm Jewel Craft Presents Thought Provoking Puzzles That Keep You on Your Toes

Puzzle games are beautiful.  Not only do they feature some of those most colorful graphics, but they also feature some of the most mind-boggling challenges a game can offer, putting those typical first person shooter games to shame.  Jewel Craft by Blue Onion Soft, Inc is no exception.  Jewel Craft offers multiple differentiations of the same concept, allowing users to choose their favorite puzzle experience and excel at what they do best on the Game Center leaderboards.

When you begin, the main menu displays all the game types available: Classic, Crazy, Battle (all with links to their Game Center leaderboards) and Puzzle (with a link to its list of Game Center achievements).  The buttons at the bottom of the page allow you to adjust the sound and vibrate controls, while the Help button teaches you how to play.

The basic idea of the game is to simply switch adjacent jewels to make a set of three so they will clear, earning you points and making room for other jewels to fall into place, possibly making new sets when they appear.  Classic mode revolves around this simple task, and if you attempt to move a jewel that will not lead to the creation of a set, it will automatically be rolled back to its original position.  Also, be aware, for these levels are timed.  If you do not reach the goal score for the level in the allotted time frame, you will lose and have to start over.  Crazy mode is similar to Classic, except your jewels will not roll back if they don’t make a set, allowing you more freedom and potentially more chances to create sets.  Puzzle mode, my personal favorite, requires you to break all the jewels on the board – an exceptional challenge that I simply adore!  And Battle mode allows users to play versus an opponent via Game Center, allowing for 60-second game play on a 6×6 board to see who can beat the other.

Users will also find some of the jewel placement tricks helpful.  When a four jewel set forms, this creates a bomb, which will also break its neighboring jewels.  Two crossing sets creates lightning, which will break jewels all along that row and column.  Five jewels together will break all the jewels of the color of a switched jewel throughout the entire board.

Also available in HD, users will immediately notice Jewel Craft’s vivid array of colors and sparkling graphics.  Both visually and mentally appealing, you can be sure to get a lot of entertaining play time out of this single application.

For a preview of what Jewel Craft has to offer, click here for a video demonstration.

Jewel Craft [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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ICECare Stores Emergency Information, Prepares You for Disaster

Price: Free     Score: 10/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm ICECare Stores Emergency Information, Prepares You for Disaster

In the event of an emergency, are you prepared?  With ICECare by Corsoft Corporation, users can now have an all-in-one guide right on their portable device, allowing them to not only keep a protected record of their critical medical data, but also an educational training tool that will ensure them some peace of mind if caught up in a disaster.

As a comprehensive emergency preparedness tool, ICECare provides users with the necessities to survive and recover from any emergency or disaster situation.  Make sure you have all your vital medical information available for emergency crews just in case, learn first aid, and plot out you family’s emergency plans all with this single, intuitive and useful application.

Users will begin by creating an account with their basic information.  A confirmation code will be sent to the email address you provide in order to finalize your setup and protect your privacy.  As you continue with the Setup Wizard, you will begin to expand upon your profile, inputting information that can only make the app live up to its fullest potential.  However, all information entered is optional and can be updated at any time using the Edit Settings button under the Tools tab.  (Note: You settings cannot be changed without your password, so be sure to remember what you enter during setup!)

As you proceed, you will begin to enter more specific information, such as whether you use a hearing aid or contact lenses.  Also, specify if you’re an organ donor, enter your insurance provider and reference number, upload a photo of yourself, and even enter your address and daytime and evening phone numbers.  Include your blood type, blood pressure, describe any chronic conditions you may have, such as diabetes and asthma, list your allergies and any medications you currently take, plot out your health history and enter any and all possible emergency contacts.

By having all this information at hand, emergency medical technicians and doctors will have all they need to know right at their fingertips in case you are ever knocked unconscious or become incoherent.  However, users will most definitely want to order their ICECare sticker as soon as possible.  This sticker, which easily adheres to the back of your device, provides a unique identification code that allows medical staff to access all your vital information even if your phone is inoperable or locked.  They will only be able to access the information you have authorized, which can also be found on the ICECare.net website if necessary.  In fact, this ability to access your information from the Internet also includes the added benefit of locking or deleting your information remotely if your device is ever stolen.

Once you have finished entering your information, the Emergency tab will display links to your vital health history, while the Contacts tab will contain you Essential Numbers.  The Tools tab brings users to the educational tools and settings buttons, which teach users important basics, such as first aid training, disaster recovery procedures and so much more.  Never have I ever seen one application cater to preserving your well being as much as ICECare does, but one can tell they truly care, for they do not put a price on this application, as one cannot put a price on saving a life.

ICECare [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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DT Calculator Determines Server Downtime Costs

Price: Free     Score: 7/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm DT Calculator Determines Server Downtime Costs

We live in an age where technology controls much of what we do.  And when the technology we depend on fails, our productivity flies right out the window.  With DT Calculator by Storagepipe, users can calculate exactly how much money their business is losing any time their servers crash.  The Downtime Cost Calculator uses specific information to estimate how much money a business may lose for every second of server downtime, giving those in charge a better way to calculate their losses and report these figures to anyone higher up.

Amongst IT administrators, server downtime has become quite a concern considering that data storage requirements continue to rapidly increase despite the economic downturn.  They now have less money to clean up such messes, meaning they must do all they can to maintain their system’s efficiency.

The calculator acts as the applications main attraction, needing only a few bits of data in order to figure out your losses.  To figure out your lost sales, input the yearly revenue, business hours in one year, and impact to sales figures.  To determine lost productivity, input the number of employees affected, average employee cost per hour, and the average percentage they are affected.  Then, hit the panic button the moment servers crash to watch the application calculate the amount lost as the counter tracks the amount of time passing while the servers are down.

DT Calculator also offers a Videos tab, which draws you in simply out of curiosity, for it is hard to imagine why such a calculator would come with a slew of videos.  However, these “What If?” videos simply summarize the online backup, data archiving, email archiving, high availability and business continuity systems and services Storagepipe offers businesses.  These services seem to fit seamlessly with the product’s main feature, for these services seem to promise no more downtime worries for such companies.  They provide you with this free calculator, all in hope that you will find their other services extremely enticing.

Though the calculator itself seems to be quite a useful tool, the application as a whole seems more like one giant advertisement for all the other services Storagepipe offers for businesses.  With an entire section dedicated to videos that conjure images of server failure disasters and burning building-type panic, one cannot help but feel as if they have been tricked into watching numerous cartoon videos that they originally had hoped would teach them something new about coping with server downtime.  (Though you basically catch on to the fact that you won’t be learning anything after two or three video clips.)  If your services are that helpful, make this known right away, for nine videos is pure overkill and quite the deterrent.

DT Calculator [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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Help Save the City from Fast Food Monsters with Hamburger Hunter

Price: $.99     Score: 7/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm Help Save the City from Fast Food Monsters with Hamburger Hunter

The city has come under attack and only you can save its citizens from the impending terror.  With mutated fast food monsters running amuck all over the city streets, only you can defeat these encroaching enemies and preserve your dwindling community.  Hamburger Hunter by Navigation-Info Kft puts you in control, giving you the weapons that will destroy the hamburger and hot dog monsters that roam the streets, ready to kill any human in their path.

Upon startup, users will find the main menu screen, which features the Play, High Scores, How To Play and Credits buttons.  The Play button is self-explanatory, while the High Scores button connects users to the Game Center leaderboards.  How to Play demonstrates the key device movements and taps one must learn in order to adjust run speed, change weapon, jump and fire their weapons.  To run, one must tilt their device.  However, I suggest tilting only slightly until you develop your skills, for the application is extremely sensitive in regards to tilting, making your character run exceptionally fast with even just the slightest tilt, which can lead to quite rapid, uncontrolled game play.

Once you begin playing the game, the top of the screen will display your score to the left and your health gauge to the right with a pause button.  The bottom navigation bar indicates that a left screen tap will allow your character to jump, while a right screen tap will allow you to fire your weapon of choice.  The middle of the navigation bar will display an array of available weapons, such as a club or a gun, of which there are nine different types throughout the game.

Then, just dive right in and begin defending the torn up city streets by shooting and destroying those causing the destruction.  Take down the hamburger and hot dog monsters, descend into the subway where even more of these dreaded creatures dwell, and be sure to kill them before you get killed.  Rather simple and straightforward, Hamburger Hunter provides users with a silly shoot ‘em up game that is sure to entertain (and make you hungry in the process)!

To view Hamburger Hunter’s game trailer, click here.

Hamburger Hunter [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 4.1 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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Learn All You Can About Kissing with Art of Making Out

Price: $0.99     Score: 6/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm Learn All You Can About Kissing with Art of Making Out

Kissing can be quite an entertaining pastime (when you’re with the right person, of course).  With Art of Making Out by Dolcinema, users can peruse a list of the most popular local make out and date night hot spots, learn an expansive array of kissing games, and read up on kissing tips and the history of making out.

The main screen provides buttons to the application’s three main sections: Locator, Make Out Games and All About Making Out.  On the Locator page, use the “Find A Spot Near Me” button to detect your location, or enter a specific city, state and country in order to find the hottest make out spots for your party or various places in the area to take your date.

The Make Out Games button takes users to a ridiculously long list of kissing games, some of which you may play in groups, while others cater more to one-on-one, intimate activities for you and your significant other.  There are indeed too many games to count, honestly, for the list seems to scroll endlessly.  However, this section also provides some tools that may come in handy for those dedicated to kissing games.  To the bottom left of the screen, users will find a Spin the Bottle button, which presents a virtual bottle with cues for what to do.  Rather untraditional, this bottle seems best used in a game for two.  The bottom right of the screen offers a button that provides a convenient timer for those wishing to play Seven Minutes in Heaven.

All About Making Out tells you everything you could ever possibly want (and not want) to know about making out.  Read about kissing throughout history, tips, how to deal with a bad kisser, how to give someone a hickey and types of kisses.  Weirdly enough, you will also find a category dedicated to movie scene kisses you may wish to re-enact.  However, some of their choices are slightly unsettling, for a number of these films (if not all) eventually resulted in the death of one of the characters.  And we can see that the developer must have an affinity for the forbidden, choosing kisses from ‘Fatal Attraction’ and ‘Unfaithful’ for this reenactment list.  Also, users (namely women) may be a bit put off by the last category – Top Ten Chick On Chick Kissing Scenes.  (Though I’m sure this will immediately attract the perverted male population.)

Perfect for the make out obsessed, Art of Making Out’s comprehensive collection of games and information is actually quite baffling, for I never knew there could be so much to learn about kissing.  However, that does not negate how strange (and slightly useless) this application is unless you are desperate for some tips.  While I do give the developers credit for compiling so much information, this application has that kinky weirdness that makes one feel rather dirty just having it downloaded to their device.

Art of Making Out [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.1.3 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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StarTeeth Teaches Children the Basics of Brushing

Price: Free*     Score: 9/10     By A. Papachristosbadge appstore sm StarTeeth Teaches Children the Basics of Brushing

As children, we spent years learning the basics all people need to know in order to optimize their health and intelligence.  Our parents spent precious time teaching us essential hygienic practices every child must learn.  However, not all children are exactly cooperative, making some lessons harder to teach than others.  For those trying to teach their children how to brush their teeth, StarTeeth by FUNGAMENTAL Labs s.r.o. offers a kid-friendly interface that makes brushing simple and mildly fun.

Upon startup, users will want to begin by exploring the buttons at the bottom of the page.  The question mark icon describes what every other button does.  For instance, the button to its right, the toothbrush icon, leads users to a tutorial on How to Brush.  The demonstration of how children should brush their teeth begins by reinforcing the fact that everyone should brush their teeth twice a day – once in the morning after breakfast, and once at night before bed.  From here, Charlie and Lucy will guide you through the steps.  (Anyone else sense that a Peanuts fan must’ve had a hand in naming the lead characters?)

First, you will learn about your teeth and gums and how you should move the toothbrush.  Start by brushing the teeth in the back of your mouth, use the end of the brush to efficiently clean the backsides of your teeth, gently wipe between the red of your gums and the white of your teeth for those easy to reach front teeth, and brush in circling motions on the tops of your chewing teeth.  These tips and instructions not only teach children the best way to proceed, but it also refreshes the minds of parents whose own brushing habits have simply become second nature.

Once you think your child has mastered the basics, tap Let’s Start on the main page to begin!  First, have your child select their brushing mate, who will guide them through the process.  Choose from Charlie, Lucy, a dog, a cat, a princess or a superhero.  Next, put toothpaste on your brush and prepare to start the two-minute timer.  Once the time begins to countdown, simply have your child follow their mate’s gestures, for your child should aim to mimic the same movements in the same time frame so they will eventually master this basic routine.  Of course, you may want to stand by and hold your gadget for them, for I don’t recommend letting them get your iPhone too close to the sink’s running water.

Like all lessons, repetition is key, so keep this application handy until your child has definitely mastered the task.  Also, after they successfully follow the instructions, your child can then have a bit of fun with the Choose and Vote button on the main page.  Here, they can vote for their favorite characters in an effort to have them become part of StarTeeth’s Christmas edition, on sale December 5th.

*Introductory price available for the first week only.

StarTeeth [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.

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