Codename: Granati

Home Planet: Leende

Favorite Color: Green

Likes: Being a Canon Cadet, Grenades and Sunshine

Dislikes: Evil Monkeys, Cages and Bad Jokes

When Rocketboy and Pop arrive on Leende they learn of a fellow named Granati who really loves to have a blast. After searching high and low for him they finally track him down in the dusty desert. When they free him from the confines of his cage they soon realize he lives up to his reputation and then some. Granati is a welcome addition to the crew and they head off to their next adventure hot on the trail of Gordo.

For news on Cannon Cadets, follow XMG Studio on Twitter and Facebook.

Codename: Pop

Home Planet: Sorriso

Favorite Color: Blue

Likes: Aiding his fellow Cadets beat Gordo, Laughter and of course, Having fun

Dislikes: Bananas, Robots and Eye Patches

On the planet Sorriso, RocketBoy rescues a funny little guy named Pop. Pop can be hard headed, but all his friends say that he is three times as fun as anyone else they know. When Pop joins RocketBoy and RocketGirl the trio officially form the Cannon Cadets. Gordo is still traveling through the galaxy leaving a trail of
unhappiness behind him, but the Cadets have him running scared.

For the latest Cannon Cadets news, follow XMG Studio on Twitter and Facebook.

Codename: RocketBoy

Home Planet: Hauska

Favorite Color: Red

Likes: Building rockets, Playing with friends, Yelling “Yee ha!” as loud as he can.

Dislikes: Monkey Fleas, Metal Buildings, Cannons that Backfire

Our hero began his life on the planet Hauska as a regular, happy little boy who spent his days climbing trees with his friends, building toy rockets and generally having fun. But when the evil monkey Gordo arrived on his planet replacing fun and happiness with despair and misery, the little boy knew he had to act. He built a rocket powerful enough to fly around the galaxy and strong enough to blast through the cages the evil monkey and his robot minions were using to imprison their captives. And with that, our hero emerged as RocketBoy and began his crusade to bring the fun back into the world. As he travels from planet to planet he is recruiting new heroes into his team, the Cannon Cadets, an elite force with the mission of restoring fun to the galaxy and showing Gordo how to be happy again.

Check out Rocketboy in the upcoming game Cannon Cadets, by XMG Studio!

Want to the first to know about Cannon Cadets? Follow XMG Studio on Twitter or Facebook for announcements and free download codes!

Montreal, Quebec – Dlux Studio today is pleased to announce the release and immediate availability of elasticr 2.0 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. An Alien invasion, a clumsy janitor, a vat of rubber and a burst of radiation lay the groundwork for the latest release of “elasticr, the Stretchiest Superhero” game for the Apple iPhone.

The games hero elasticr could very well be the distant cousin of Mr. Fantastic of the Fantastic Four or Helen Parr, aka Elastigirl with his powers of super body elongation, allowing him to fling himself acrobatically around a room to avoid evil aliens, devious traps and sharp spikes as he struggles to save the human race.

In the latest version of elasticr, Dlux Studios has added twenty additional levels along with a level chooser, full OpenFeint integration, and significantly more hair gel to manage elasticr’s super sized pompadour. The elasticr app’s physics engine creates realistic flying, bouncing and stretching effects unparallel in the app store.

Fun for kids from five to one hundred, elasticr’s is rated 4+ and is both suitable and enjoyable for children. Higher levels will test the skills of gamers of all ages as elasticr encounters increasingly difficult obstacles such as disappearing hand holds, spinning blades and numerous chances for electrocution. Please ignore the smell of burning rubber…

To experience the most fun with rubber since the first rubber band was shot across a room at a co-worker, find the elasticr arcade game in the iTunes app store for only $0.99. elasticr is compatible with all iPhone’s and iPod touch devices running iOS 3.0 or higher. Go ahead and run it on your iPad too… elasticr is more than happy to stretch onto the bigger screen for you.

Device Requirements:
* iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad
* Requires iOS 3.0 or later
* 9.7 MB

Pricing and Availability:
elasticr 2.0 is only $0.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Games category.
Elasticr 2.0
Purchase and Download
Media Assets
YouTube Video

Founded in 2004, Dlux Studio is a privately held company with a staff of over 2 people… corporate giants beware! Purveyors of fine iPhone applications, Dlux Studios offers mobile applications with advanced graphic, web, interface and game design with a philosophy of finding the most simple, elegant and convenient solution to any problem without losing the purport. Even their proposals rarely exceed two pages. The Studio’s headquarters is situated in Montreal, Quebec. Copyright (C) 2010 Dlux Studio. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.

By Aaron Watkins, Co-Founder, Appency PR & Marketing

Any developer who has ever tried submitting an app to iTunes that contains “Chuck Norris” in its keywords or features knows that the reviewers at Apple are keeping a watchful eye on precious copyrights and intellectual property rights… or are they?  More and more developers are raising red flags as an alarming number of blatant copyright infringements make their way past the watchful eye of big brother app store and into general circulation, taking profits away from hard working developers who have followed the proper channels.

It used to be common for copycat developers to throw dozens of keywords into their app descriptions in order to ride the coat tails of the successful. In response to complaints however, Apple instituted revised search features that no longer used the description as a source for keywords. Now, the only searchable items to find an application are the apps name, the 100 characters of keywords allotted to each app, and the company name.

Leave it to the dastardly to find a way around it.

Method #1: Don’t just create a copycat app – steal the app title as well!

While there will always be a number of quotes apps, 23,000 Great Quotes was one of the first, and its aesthetics and vast amount of content has helped it reach the top Lifestyle lists and the HD version get chosen by Apple to promote during the iPad launch.

Launched this week, 23,000 quotes is… well… the same app, but without the great design, and by a different developer. While I have not given the developer the $1.99 to check to see if it’s the same 23,000 quotes, it’s a funny number to magically appear on a another quotes . A few months ago we also saw “+ 23,000 Great Quotes” appear on the app store, only to be taken away when Cramzy submitted a formal complaint to Apple for the obvious rip off.

This is not as uncommon as you might think, as in just the last week another of our clients encountered the exact same problem:

FirstWords: Animals has been a run-away hit with the toddler crowd. My own year and a half year old actually steals my iPhone and walks around the house saying the letter i over and over until I turn this app on for her. A YouTube video of the iPad version of the app being tested by a two year old had over 1MM  viewers around the time the iPad launch. It’s a simple concept, children can move the letters around on the screen to spell the animal pictured. Once the word is complete, the animal makes its noise and you move on to the next one. A picture is worth a thousand words… and the image from the app store is very self explanatory.

With the success of FirstWords however, the app Xerox machines moved in. May I present to you – My First Words: Animals!

I think what bugs me the most about this one is that they didn’t even have the creativity to change the images in iTunes to make it look slightly different! I mean really… couldn’t you have at least gone with “DOG” and “PONY” for your show… Or maybe just the cat image three times to show how much of a copycat you really are.

The most recent tactic has been even more devious.

Method #2: Cant rip off the app? Just take its branding.

I love the icons for Little Metal Ball and its supped up version, Little Metal Ball Gold. The colors are great, the image is clear and the contrasts really make it pop. Today, XMG Studio, the developers, sent me an email telling me to look at a new app called “Ball Jumps”.  Here’s what I found:

Not only did the app blatantly steal the icon from a classic app store game (one that reached #1 worldwide!), but the app itself is, to put it nicely, crap. It’s a poor attempt at a Doodle Jump clone, and the app itself looks nothing like the icon.

There is a huge difference between abusive cloning, and creating new apps of the same genre. You’ll find a million FPS games, Tower Defense and Match 3 games in iTunes, all of which take their own approaches on the style. Some of the biggest hits in the app store are not the first to do their style –  Doodle Jump is a great game, but  PapiJump was there first, and Im a huge fan of Pocket Devil and Angry Birds , both of which came after originals (yes, even Angry Birds – if you ask what came first, the Angry Bird or the Egg, the answer is actually neither – try an app called Crush the Castle! Personally, I’m looking forward to “Cannon Cadets” by XMG Studio which looks like a great new approach on this genre.)

There are too many apps in iTunes to properly police them all, so it has become even more important for developers to keep a mindful eye on their apps and bring it up to Apple when a violation occurs.

Please note – we have not provided links to the cloned apps here as we don’t think they deserve the traffic. Have you seen other blatant clones or rip-offs? Let us know!

Text’nDrive today launched the first iPhone application to read and reply to emails with intelligent speech technology. Designed to help curb the increase in accidents caused by distracted driving while texting or emailing, Text’nDrive enables drivers to listen to and respond to email messages by voice using any hands-free device, so they can keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. No other app allows drivers to reply by voice.

Montreal, PQ – Text’nDrive(TM) today launched the first iPhone application to read and reply to emails with intelligent speech technology. Designed to help curb the increase in accidents caused by distracted driving while texting or emailing, Text’nDrive(TM) enables drivers to listen to and respond to email messages by voice using any hands-free device, so they can keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. No other app allows drivers to reply by voice. iPhone users can currently use the Text’nDrive(TM) app to read and respond to their emails while the SMS text feature will be added shortly.

In-car speakerphones, wired connections, Bluetooth headsets, and manufacturer-installed hardware are all supported. Text’nDrive(TM) marries road safety and text and email connectivity for the first time.

Many countries and jurisdictions have adopted legislation prohibiting the use of mobile phones while driving unless a hands-free device is used. In North America, 19 states and six provinces have already enacted these laws while most others are applying partial bans or are in the process of passing similar legislation. Text’nDrive(TM) offers an easy-to-use solution for drivers who wish to stay connected and avoid costly fines and the dangers associated with texting and emailing while driving.

A recent study from the University of Utah found that each time a driver writes or reads a text message they take their eyes off the road for almost five seconds and increase their risk of a collision by up to 23 times.

“Texting and emailing while driving has unfortunately become commonplace and is the cause of numerous accidents. These incidents alone prove the danger of texting and emailing while operating a motor vehicle” said Text’nDrive(TM) CEO, Daniel Robichaud. “We are thrilled to present Text’nDrive(TM) as the innovative solution which we hope will entice

more responsible driving habits and ultimately make the roads safer for everyone.”

Device Requirements: * iPhone, iPod touch and iPad * Requires iOS 3.1.2 or later (iOS 4.0 Tested) * 4.0 MB

Pricing and Availability: There are both free and pro versions available. Text’nDrive 1.0 is $19.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Navigation category. For more information on Text’nDrive’s features and benefits, please visit Text’nDrive online.␣ ␣ Text’nDrive 1.0: http://www.textndrive.com/

Download Lite From iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/textndrive-lite/id374026946?mt=8

Tara Stiles, personal Yoga trainer to Deepak Chopra and “the coolest yoga instructor ever” according to Vanity Fair, has taken her unique brand of Yoga out of the studio and into the streets, grocery stores and even the bedroom with her new DVD “Yoga Anywhere – The New York Sessions”, and an iPad version of her highly successful “Authentic Yoga with Deepak Chopra and Tara Stiles” iPhone application.

“It’s easy to be intimidated by the modern yoga studio” said Tara, when asked about the concept of Yoga Anywhere, “but location should not stop you from enjoying the health benefits of a proper yoga workout including weight loss, better sleep and reduced stress.” With the inclusion of Tara’s iPhone and iPad applications to her already comprehensive line of DVD’s, yoga has officially broken out of the bounds of the studios

The iPhone and iPad application were put together with the guidance of holistic health guru Deepak Chopra, who Tara trains whenever he is in New York.  “”Even though there is massive interest in yoga as a form of physical exercise, there is very little understanding of the spiritual aspects of yoga and what yoga is really about. I wanted to create an app that will help people reap the benefits of yoga from all aspects of mind, body, and spirit” said Dr. Chopra

The Authentic Yoga with Deepak Chopra and Tara Stiles apps feature a comprehensive set of yoga routines for any level and grouped into flexibility, strength, body awareness and balance. More advanced practitioners can create their own routines by combining various poses into sets that can be saved and used later. The recent iPad upgrade has updated the content with high definition images and videos of Tara and Deepak to take full advantage of the devices features.

Yoga has never been more convenient, and professional yoga instruction has never been more affordable with the iPhone and iPad application available in the iTunes App Store for only $1.99. Tara’s “Yoga Anywhere” DVD can be purchased at tarastilesdvd.com.

About Tara Stiles

Tara Stiles, author of Slim Calm Sexy (Rodale), personal yoga instructor to Deepak Chopra, and resident expert of the Women’s Health Yoga Channel, promotes the ideology of “yoga for everyone.” Tara has inspired a wide audience around the world with her healthy and relatable approaches to exercise, awareness, nutrition, and everyday well being. Her intention is to spread the benefits of yoga into preventive healthcare, and normalize the practice by translating ancient yoga traditions and ideas into something more people can get involved with, regardless of lifestyle and body type.

Mobile Music Apps for Kids Provide Both Educational and Entertainment Benefits

In a modern age of technology, parents are more frequently relying on their mobile phones as part time entertainment for their children. Which apps are the best for young minds? Those that strongly incorporate music alongside bright visual imagery says Genera Interactive, cCreators of the Kids Song Machine for the iPhone  and iPod Touch.

Genera has developed a solution for parents looking for the perfect children’s app. Music is an important part of the growth and development of toddlers, according to experts who say that it provides a “rich sensory environment” for children and helps in the development of neural pathways in the brain. Kids Song Machine, developed by Genera, is a children’s app that provides that exact environment. Children who play or sing music regularly not only do better with math and reading in school, but play better with others and have been reported to have a higher self esteem.. With the application, parents can help their children on the go or between tasks – spurring development rather than mindless entertainment.

With that ina focus on both child development and fun, mind, Genera introduces Kids Song Machine is- an application centered on music, specifically for young children. Children’s brains develop fastest when they are young, with 80 percent of brain development occurring by age 3,2 and with music being both a fun and beneficial activity, they should get the most through actively experiencing it. The application uses rhythm and song to make the transitions from one activity to another a memorable learning experience – not only because children enjoy them, but because it helps in learning numbers, letters, and songs.

Kids Song Machine gives parents the option of not only entertaining their children, but it allows them to both interact with the program throughplay in the digital world  touching and sing in a grouping. Characters are set in a rich and cartoon-like environment, where toddlers and young children will be drawn into a world with a host of nursery rhymes and familiar children songs. The easily readable lyrics will also allow kids to follow-along, even if they aren’t familiar with the old classics.

While many of the currently available children’s song apps in iTunes only boast one tune, the Kids Song Machine boasts six classic children’s songs including “Wheels on the Bus”,  “I’m a Little Teapot”, “If You’re Happy and You Know It”, “Row Row Row Your Boat”, “Hickory Dickory Doc” and “Old McDonald Had a Farm.”

Kids Song Machine is available for immediate download for $1.99 through the iTunes app store. It is compatible with any iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad with operating system 3.0 or higher. For more information, visit http://www.generainteractive.com/apps/kids-song-machine or search in iTunes.

Originally Posted by By Tom MagrinoGameSpot

EEDAR study finds gamers more likely to like, buy, recommend a high-quality title if first exposed to critics’ thumbs-up.

Gaming executives often emphasize the importance of a game’s critical reception, and a new study by Electronic Entertainment Design and Research and the Sothern Methodist University offers one reason why. The study, which measured how game reviews affect perception of quality, purchase intent, and likelihood to recommend to others, found that positive scores can dramatically elevate a high-quality game in the mind of consumers.

Plants vs. Zombies won the hearts, and ate the minds, of critics.

Conducted in conjunction with SMU during the week of March 29, the study involved 188 participants (23 of which were disqualified as inappropriate for the research). The study made use of Plants vs. Zombies, a highly regardedtower defense-style strategy game that participants had no prior knowledge of. Participants were divided up into three groups, with the first initially exposed to high-scoring reviews before participating in a 20-minute play session. The process was repeated with a group who were shown low review scores and a control group who was shown no review scores before its play sessions.

Following the play session, participants were tasked with providing a numerical score to the game on a 100-point scale, as well as selecting whether they’d prefer to receive $10 in cash or a copy of the game as recompense for their time. The study’s results found that those who were shown a high review score on average rated the game six points higher than the control group and 14 points higher than the group shown negative scores.

“Even with first-hand experience of time spent playing the game, those exposed to high review scores give the game a higher review and those exposed to low review scores gave the game a lower score,” the study noted. “Clearly, this initial review exposure influenced their opinion, even after they played the game themselves.”

The data also indicated that 38 percent of those shown high review scores took a copy of the game over the $10 payment. That figure dropped to 21 percent who took the game from the control group and 17 percent from the negative-score group.

“The findings of this study indicate that critic reviews, independent of product quality, significantly influenced participants’ willingness to purchase the product,” the study found. “As painful as it may be for developers to consider, even with the creation of a high quality game, a game is likely to achieve greater commercial success if reviewed highly, than if reviewed poorly or not at all.”

Continuing the trend, those shown a high review score also said they would be more likely to recommend Plants vs. Zombies to a friend. Ninety-one percent of those shown high review scores said they’d recommend the game, whereas only 65 percent of the negative-score group and 79 percent of the control group said they would.

“The most surprising result is Group B (low review exposure), where the majority (65 percent) indicated they would still recommend the game to a friend even though 73 percent of the group would not purchase it themselves…Group B’s review score was higher than the anchored review score of 61, indicating that, while reviews influenced their behavior, they still felt that the game was much better than what the ‘experts’ suggested. This suggests that if a company releases an inherently good game that receives lower than ‘deserved’ review scores, the company may be able to increase sales through a widely played demo.”

As for other real-world applications, EEDAR’s study noted that publishers could be well served to offer select media outlets a period to review a game prior to release, for the purpose of selecting choice critique for use on box art. However, the study notes that this method would only work if the prerelease review process remained untainted and that the game itself is of a high degree of quality. These blurbs could also be used in game demos, as well as other marketing campaigns.

EEDAR also said that its conclusions only apply for those games regarded by professional critics as high quality. The market research firm noted that a variety of other factors could contribute to a game’s success, or lack thereof, including “marketing, pricing, release timing, and brand awareness.”

Ever wonder what happens to your favorite soccer team when they get their ball handed to them and the chance to win the World Cup is gone? If it was up to many fans, banishment to the depths of hell seems like an appropriate punishment. Don’t have a direct line to the underworld? Take your frustrations out while celebrating your patriotic spirit with Pocket Devil chapter 10 – “UnderWORLD Cup” for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Are you disappointed in your favorite soccer team? Do you want to impale them on spikes and kick balls at their heads? While human impalement is generally frowned upon in all fifty states,  iPhone users can take out their World Cup frustrations with the newest chapter of Eyedip’s hit app “Pocket Devil – Hell Yeah!” which has just been released to the iTunes app store in the wake of America’s poor showing in South Africa.

In Chapter 10 – “UnderWORLD Cup” players have access to a new mini game for the footy enthusiast, which allows you to practice your skills by firing soccer balls at unsuspecting Mugat2 during practice mode, and then try your skills against Spike, the demon turned goalie with the Penalty Kick challenge. Defend your own goal from ball busting Mugat2’s and celebrate your victories by tying your unsuspecting minions to some leftover bottle rockets and blast them into the sky in a blood red fireworks celebration.

But hell on the soccer green is not the only addition that the hellish overloads at Eyedip have cooked up recently. In response to user demands, Pocket Devil is now fully integrated with the OpenFeint gaming system to deliver global leader boards, trophies, and a way to keep track of how good you are at decapitating Mugat2.  As long as you are in a decapitating mood, try out the Underworld Massacre mini-game where you can slice, dice, and puree your way to a devilish bloodbath, using a variety of weapons from a Machete to Handsaw to every Texan’s favorite, the Chainsaw.

You can find “Pocket Devil – Hell Yeah!” in the iTunes App Store Entertainment category for only $0.99. Chapter 10 is fully compatible with any iDevice using iOS 3.0 or later including the new iOS 4.0 system. For devilish updates, follow @ThePocketDevil on Twitter.