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Need for Speed Shift leads Android Games of the Week

by Kristen Nicole

The gaming industry’s big players unleashed some big titles to end the year. EA Games launched Need for Speed Shift. GetJar also spread some holiday cheer with a free play version of Gameloft title Modern Combat: Sandstorm. Several new titles also rocketed to the top of the charts, making for a diverse mix of hot Android games this week.

Big news

EA Mobile has brought another title to Android: Need for Speed Shift. It’s a thrilling release, with detailed race courses, well done accelerometer integration, and a variety of game options. Choose your car, track and difficulty settings and hit the road. This $4.99 game is also gearing up for an Android tablet release too.

GetJar delivers free game play of Android’s best premium titles, acting as a secondary market for gamers to explore. This week, a couple of Gameloft titles made their way into GetJar, starting with Modern Combat: Sandstorm. This wartime action game pits you against terrorists on their own turf, and it’s up to you to use the right weapons to help you advance.

With news of nullDC, a Dreamcast emulator, supporting Android, console titles are still gamer favorites for the mobile crowd. Emulator ROMs has its own success story this week, gaining over 10k downloads within its first week. This free app offers thousands of ROMs for NES/FC, SNES/SFC, GBA, and MD/Genesis. A directory of throwback games, and a new generation of players is born.

Pure entertainment

A mix between Alchemy and Bejweled, Gem Buster is a swap game where three-of-a-kind earns points and clears the board. A casual arcade title, Gem Buster is one of many jewel-themed games in the Android Market. Call it jewel-mania, but the real bling comes with your high scores, which can be shared across leaderboards for some bragging rights of your own. Grab the full version for $1.99.

Toyshop Adventures is a delightful game to play, no matter how old you are. Set in a toyshop, your aim is to help the shopkeeper find all his lost marbles. With each level-up you collect more marbles, though you’ll need some strategic methods to outsmart each obstacle. With a colorful toy store as a backdrop, this free Android game is intriguing, justifying its 10k downloads within weeks of launch.

Based off Settlers of Catan, Island Settlers for Android takes a look at the challenges of creating civilization. Build up your land, buying supplies, seeds and materials, and trade with other players to make the most of your growing community. A social experiment all its own, Island Settlers is a free game.

Full Force

A popular release from Polarbit, Armageddon Squadron takes you back to WWII for daring dogfights in the skies. Shoot your way through enemy plane attacks, with this simulator game responding to every move you make. From bomb drops to air raids, this $2.99 game is good for a few rounds of shoot-em-up play time.

Like Diner Dash for a game house, Game Dev Story gives you an entire company to run in its efforts to reach fame and fortune. In this creative simulation, you create various aspects of your game, including a console, which could affect your long-term success. See how well you run operations, with this new game costing just under $5.00

New to the Android Market, Rocket Bunnies has scored more than 10k downloads in less than a week. This action-puzzle game zooms you from one planet to another, avoiding obstacles along the way. This free Android game is one of timing, where an early bunny launch could send you crashing into an electric portal, or enemy ships.