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Retro-style games are modern classics

After reviewing Devious Dungeon, it occurred to me that the classic platformer game genre is far from dead. Even though the graphics for smartphone games have reached amazing heights with games like Real Racing 3, the Modern Combat franchise, and countless other top-tier titles, what's interesting to me is that games that look like they could be played on a '90s-era gaming console continue to be popular with today's gamers.

A steady stream of retro-looking platformer titles have had great success and continue to fly up the App Store's most-popular lists, relying more on tried-and-true gameplay than … Read more

Samsung unveils a new foundation for the smart home

The Samsung family of smart appliances and devices is about to get a lot more tight-knit.

Today, Samsung announced a new platform that will enable users to manage all of their connected appliances and devices -- everything from wearable tech to washing machines -- from a single application. The platform, called "Samsung Smart Home," is set to debut at CES 2014 in Las Vegas, with a planned roll-out during the first half of the year.

Initially, the platform will provide users with three main services: Device Control, Home View, and Smart Customer Service. Device Control will allow users … Read more

Jet Car stunts is back and better than ever

Jet Car Stunts 2 is the long-awaited sequel to the physics-based racing and stunt car game that was a hit way back in 2009 in the App Store. But with this installment, the game has several new cars (each with different handling), different race types, and tons of high-flying action.

The control system is mostly the same as the original game, with tilt controls to steer and onscreen gas and brake buttons. But even with its pitch-perfect controls, Jet Car Stunts 2 is extremely challenging, and is probably not a good fit for casual racing game fans.

It's also … Read more

Super Mario 3D World: The Wii U gets its first must-have game

In the midst of the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 debuting and throwing their muscle around, Nintendo is like the kid in the corner: quiet, patient, unnoticed. While the Nintendo 3DS might have found some staying power, the Wii U remains a problem console. Make more games like Super Mario 3D World, however, and that might not be the case.

Nintendo's latest game featuring its tentpole franchise mascot lives up to the reputation, and is a heck of a lot of fun. In fact, it might be my favorite game of the fall, even surrounded by the PS4 … Read more

Self-driving cars: Why? (The Next Big Thing, Episode 2)

Awaiting you in this episode:

Self-driving cars are coming It won't happen in one step, but it will probably happen during the introduction and improvement of a dozen or so technologies that might be in your car already.

3D gesture technology We are on the cusp of moving from the 2D gestures of touch screens to 3D gestures that happen the way humans have always communicated.

What's next for mobile platforms? If you're waiting to see who will shape up to be the third major mobile platform, you might want to change your viewpoint to if there … Read more

Storify is fittingly acquired by Livefyre social curation platform

Livefyre's acquisition of Storify seems to make sense -- it's the marriage of a social storytelling tool to a social curation platform. The two companies announced their union on Monday.

Although not a household name, Livefyre lets millions of users share, tweet, and post news stories they see on the Web. The company's more than 400 customers include CNET's parent company, CBS, and dozens of other news sites such as the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and Fox News. Brands including American Idol, Sony PlayStation, and Nascar use the service.

Storify is a tool … Read more

Apple TV said to be getting Vevo music video app

Word on the street is that Apple TV owners may soon be able to access Vevo's vast music video library. The free entertainment platform is said to be developing an app for Apple TV that will let users watch music videos 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, according to AdAge.

Vevo launched its service in 2009, which lets users watch music videos from the platform's catalog of more than 50,000 videos. The service offers videos from three of the four major record labels, including Universal, Sony, and the bygone EMI.

Apple TV won't be … Read more

Limbo is an eerie puzzle masterpiece for iOS

Limbo for iOS is a spooky, and award-winning, indie puzzle-platformer, which first made its name on Xbox 360 and now is out for iOS. The touch-screen controls are spot on, making it a great purchase for any iOS device, but you might be left wanting more.

The storyline is both straightforward and mysterious, with only this line as an introduction from developer Playdead: "Uncertain of his sister's fate, a boy enters Limbo." That's all you have to go on at the beginning of the game, but through trial and error, you'll quickly learn the swipe … Read more

Review: Dead Ahead breathes new life into the decrepit Endless-Running genre

The Endless-Running genre of mobile gaming has been getting stale. Dead Ahead hopes to revive some of the fun by bringing the dying genre back to life with zombies.

In Dead Ahead, you take control of your little scooter and navigate the mess that is the post-apocalyptic highway, all the while being chased down by the undead hordes. Dodge cars, buses, and barricades; mow down stray zombies, and collect bonuses such as speed and weapon boosts, in glorious 8-bit graphic and funky arcade BGM. Your scooter can only speed up or go up and down. The game lets you choose … Read more

Box pays developers to bring in more apps

Enterprise storage company Box will pay its third-party developers for users that help grow the platform, the company announced Thursday.

The company's new developer program, which launches with 10 developers but will expand to all developers within a month or two, will pay app creators based on user activity.

The focus is on users who not only spend a lot of time on the productivity apps provided by Box's OneCloud platform, but also draw in others by sharing files with people who are not Box users yet. Box already tracks how customers use various apps, so it's … Read more