App Attack!: Tap Tap Radiation (iPad)

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Tap Tap Radiation is a game that came out back in April on the iPad. The game was created by Tapulous, the same developer that brought you the immensely popular Tap Tap Revenge on both iPhone and Android, and aimed to give iPad users a new, unique twist on the music genre game.

The general concept of the game is very similar to Tap Tap Revenge, which takes it’s cue from Guitar Hero and Rock Band. You have three “buttons” on the board. As a note hits the inside of the button, you push it, and earn points. The difference between Tap Tap Revenge and Tap Tap Radiation, however, is the placement of the buttons. In Revenge, the buttons are all at the bottom of the screen with a very organized “line” of notes flowing down the board. With Radiation, the buttons are in the middle of the screen, floating in space with no clear view of what notes will hit what button. The concept seems pretty cool, but the execution gets awfully confusing.

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The new interface for Tap Tap Radiation. Looks cool, gets confusing.

To try the game, I played one of my favorite songs of the moment: Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO. On easy, I found it to be alright. As soon as I stepped up to medium, however, I found myself to be lost as to where each note was going. The buttons, as a mentioned before, are floating in space. They move. The notes come from above and sometimes, from the sides. It can become absolutely confusing as go what is going where. It’s a lot harder to get a 8x multiplier in this game, and even harder than that to get a 16x (I have yet to do that at all).

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The concept is all well and good…and then the notes start coming from the sides!

Once you get used to the controls (if you even have the patience for it), the game is kinda fun. I don’t even think I personally want to attempt anything on hard, but that’s just me. You’ll want to download more songs, right? Well, good luck with that one. The store in this game has not been updated in quite some time. I first downloaded Radiation back in May, and booted it up for the first time in about a month today for this review, and there was nothing new available in the store. This is incredibly disappointing, as it does get kind of addicting, and I do want to try more.

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The Radiation Store has not been updated since I originally downloaded the app.

Overall, Tap Tap Radiation is a clever concept. It is a great evolution of the music game, and although the execution may be confusing and frustrating at times, it still has the potential. With the lack of support from Tapulous, however, you may want to pass on this one until they can get more content online.

App Attack: Flipboard

This is the first edition of App Attack, a headlining feature here on Digital Lust that will focus on giving you the scoop on the latest and greatest mobile apps. Today, I’ll be talking a little bit about Flipboard for iOS, the social aggregator that turns your social networking habits into a magazine. Let’s take a closer look!

The concept of Flipboard is very similar to other aggregation apps, like Pulse, for example. With Flipboard, everything turns into a magazine layout. For example, by logging into your Twitter page, you are able to view news stories that pop up in your feed as if they were a page out of today’s issue of The Daily. The layouts are incredibly clean, and the end result is unlike anything else I’ve played with thus far.

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In the above image, you see my Twitter feed, shown in the aforementioned magazine layout. You can see a news story from a Disney fan site, but instead of showing it as a link, it shows the story. Clicking on that portion of the story will bring up a new window with the rest of the story. You can just click back and continue reading. You can also see all of the other updates in my feed on the sidebar (XL 106.7 got a little tweet-happy this morning). By swiping to the next page, you’ll see the next set of stories and tweets. Everything looks so clean, accessible, and easy to read–something that is becoming more and more necessary for a good app.

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Next, let’s take a look at the home screen (yes, this probably should have been covered first, but the Twitter functionality had me too excited). The home screen displays all of the subscriptions that you’ve added to your page. A simple click on these tiles will bring up all of the latest stories that have been posted. Anything with an RSS can be added, and there are plenty of other sites that are already built in. Your tiles on the home screen will update with an image of the latest story. In a sense, it kind of reminds me of Windows Phone 7. And finally, clicking on the More icon at the top right will bring up an entire list of feeds that you can add to your page. You can easily add existing feeds that are already supported, or you can search for your own and add them that way. Hint: Add Digital Lust to your Flipboard!

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As I mentioned above, the manner in which Flipboard displays your news is very much like a magazine layout. A white background dominates the app, giving it a much cleaner and presentable appearance. Images appear large and crisp, and text shows up in a way that is extremely easy to read. Viewing in either Portrait or Landscape mode is equally the same, with Portrait giving you more of the content at once.

In this new era of the Internet, app inventors are really looking to get users away from their browsers and spend more time in-app. Apps like Flipboard are the easiest way to get your news together, and this one will definitely be a hit for years to come. At a price of free, it makes it even more worth the download. Flipboard is available on iPad.