Get GPS directions and hack and slash your way to glory: iPhone apps of the week

<p>This week's apps include an affordable GPS directions app and a dungeon crawling RPG that had a brief development hiccup, but is back and ready for you to start hacking and slashing.</p>


According to a new study I came across at AppleInsider, Apple's iPhone OS has 40 percent of the Web market share. This study doesn't specifically reflect iPhone or iPod Touch sales, rather it shows that the iPhone OS dominates around the globe when it comes to mobile handset Web browsing. The two areas where iPhone doesn't dominate (Asia and Africa) are places where the Symbian OS had an early foothold and continues to be number one.

We all know the iPhone is doing extremely well around the world, but I have to think this particular dominance (52 percent, just in the U.S.) is more about the simplicity of the iPhone and iPod Touch Web browsing experience than it is about the number of Apple handsets. My hunch is that people are not just using Safari for iPhone, but using it often because it's almost like browsing on a desktop computer. In any case, it's great news for Apple, but even greater news for us--as the iPhone continues to rise in popularity (by whatever means), you can bet that cool new apps are going to keep on coming!

This week's apps include an affordable GPS directions app and a dungeon-crawling RPG that had a brief development hiccup, but is back and ready for you to start hacking and slashing.

MotionX GPS Drive
Find the nearest coffee, gas station, or restaurants, or you can type in an address (Credit: Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET)

MotionX GPS Drive ($2.99) is an affordable GPS directions system you can use for driving directions or just to find nearby restaurants and other common locations. The interface for this app is extremely well-designed, letting you not only enter an address for step-by-step driving or walking directions, but it also locates commonly searched locations making it easy to find what you're looking for. When you're ready, view your route on the map to begin your journey.

MotionX GPS Drive claims to be always up-to-date, meaning that search, maps, routing, and points of interest always come with the latest information (like up-to-date phone numbers for chosen locations or immediate routing changes when you miss a turn, for example). The app also offers voice directions, so you can keep your eyes on the road; the first month is free, but you'll need to purchase a plan for voice directions beyond that. Overall, though other GPS systems at the app store provide more features, MotionX GPS offers up an incredibly useful tool with a slick and intuitive interface at a fraction of the cost.

Dungeon Hunter
Beautiful animated 3D graphics and endless character upgrades make this title one of the best RPGs to date (Credit: Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET)

Dungeon Hunter is a hack-and-slash RPG with excellent graphics and fun for any RPG enthusiast. Start by choosing between three classes including a warrior, a rogue, or a mage. The Warrior gives you the slow but steady strength to endure tons of enemies, while the rogue is more about killing quickly before you take too much damage. The mage has spells to zap monsters and a protective magic shield for defense. Each character provides a unique way to play the game so it's fun to go back and complete levels using different fighting styles. Dungeon Hunter will appeal to fans of Diablo and Dungeon Siege, because it offers a similar kind of hack-and-slash gameplay along with quests, character advancement, and numerous abilities to choose as you progress.

This the second time Dungeon Hunter has appeared in the iTunes Store because during their initial launch a major bug prevented players from passing a certain level of the game. Fortunately, the game has been patched up and made it through its second round of Apple's somewhat infamous app approval process. In any case, with clean console-like graphics, surprisingly good onscreen controls, great sounds, and a staggering amount of skills to obtain and use, Dungeon Hunter is a great purchase for fans of the dungeon-crawling genre.

What's your favorite iPhone app? Did you purchase other more expensive GPS apps like Tom Tom app and have thoughts on newer cheaper GPS apps like MotionX GPS Drive? Is Dungeon Hunter the best hack-and-slash RPG so far for the iPhone? Let me know in the comments!

About Jason Parker

Jason Parker has been at CNET for more than 13 years. He is the Senior Editor in charge iOS software and has become an expert reviewer of the software that runs on each new Apple device. He now spends most of his time covering Apple iOS releases and third-party apps.