sports

Throw Em Balls Will Have You Entertained for Hours

Sometimes the games that are the most fun, and most addicting are also the seemingly simplest. When I first looked at Throw ‘Em Balls I didn’t think that it would hold my attention much more than a few minutes tops. I couldn’t have been more wrong! Throw ‘Em Balls is one of the most addictive games I think I’ve ever played on the iPhone. It keeps you saying “1 more time, I know that I can beat that level with one more try”. It reminds me of the old claw games where you try to win the stuffed animal but invariably you never do. You always come “so close”… Close enough to make you want to give it just one more try. That’s what Throw ‘Em Balls does to you. It hooks you in and before you know it you’ve spent an hour throwing a virtual basketball, tennis ball, etc. at a virtual target. It’s so addicting and I can’t get enough of it!

How it Works

The basic premise is deceptively easy. You pull the ball (whatever type it may be) back like you would a slingshot (think Angry Birds) and “shoot” the ball towards the goal. Some levels have baskets for the basketball themes, some have tennis balls, some have cups and ping pong balls for beer pong but there is always a target and always a ball. That’s it. Sounds like it would get boring quickly right? I would have said the same thing 4 hours ago when I started playing it…

Some of the key features of this App are the simple yet elegant graphics. It doesn’t fill the screen with flashing lights or anything to distract your eye, rather it does a really good job of placing what would actually be at the depicted scene. While we’re talking about the graphics, I should note that it supports retina display so the balls will be shown and thrown in high res. So Easy you say right? Wrong! The developer used a really good algorithm to simulate how you would expect the balls to travel in real life. I was pleasantly surprised to find that trajectory changes equally effected bounce angles etc. In Short, it’s like real life.

To unlock higher levels you have to get a certain score just like with any game. As you progress through the levels you will find that the game gets harder and harder (as it should) and the misses closer and closer. The game is on a timer however every time you score you extend the clock by a few seconds so it’s all up to you how much time you have! Hitting a target, or making a ball in whatever the target may be, adds points to your running total. Missed balls are scattered throughout the floor/surface to remind you of all of the failed attempts and close calls but it keeps it fun!

The Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a fun, deceptively challenging game that will have you entertained for hours, Throw ‘Em Balls is for you! Just remember to keep track of the time or you’ll look up and a few hours will have gone by!

You can get Throw ‘Em Balls for your iPhone for $.99 from the iTunes store here: iTunes

 

Yahoo Fantasy Football, Baseball, Basketball, and Hockey

Manage Your Fantasy Leagues from Your iPhone

I’ve never been a huge sports fan (short of MLB), but in an attempt to learn more about what’s going on in the NFL I decided this year was the year that I would join my brother’s fantasy football league. This is going to force me to pay attention to different games Sunday mornings other than casually checking out the local team. So I sat down with my brother and his friends and and did the (virtual) draft adding my players (almost all from the lists because I didn’t know what I was doing). When we were done, my brother explained that I needed to keep track of my players, and move guys around depending on who was playing that week. This sounded exactly like a task best done while the kids were practicing ballet or, soccer so I went looking for an App to manage my team. My brother’s league uses Yahoo, who have really created a feature packed App that allows me to watch, manage, and adjust my players.  This App takes Fantasy Football from my computer to my smartphone allowing me to have total access from wherever I am. It will definitely make the experience “that much better”.

 

Do It All From Here

 

The most important thing to me is being able to do everything I can from the computer, from my phone. From within my phone I can view as many teams/leagues as I’m signed up for with my particular user name. As you can see above, I am in two different leagues (groups of people) and I have 1 team in each league. So for my first league (League B) my team name is Show Me Your TDs. In league two (Sneaky Sundays) my team name is simply lykins. I can enter the respective league by tapping the team name. Once inside, my options are just as they are within the desktop/web interface.

I can see the entire league including what players other people have. I can access my team which houses all of my players both starting and bench. I can see the matchups which are what teams within the league are playing each other on a respective week. I can see what players are available to pick up (add to my team). I can also see any messages that are sent to me or general messages that are sent to everyone. All of these options are available through the tabs at the bottom of the screen.

 

When in the team button, in the top right corner of the screen is a small pencil icon. Tapping that icon brings up my team edits. From inside of this section I can swap my players from starting to the bench, and from the bench to playing. This is extremely important when a player gets pulled last minute and you want to bench them as to not lose points.  In the top left corner you see a home button. That will take you back out to the main screen showing all of your leagues and teams.

 

The Bottom Line

If you’re involved in Fantasy Football through Yahoo, you can’t afford not to have this App. It’s extremely well thought out, feature packed, and amazingly easy to use. During Fantasy Football, it’s a must have for me and after you try it, I’ll be you too!

MLB-At-Bat

MLB is Back for 2012

MLB.com is Back for 2012!

It’s no secret around here that I’m a huge baseball fan, especially the Cincinnati Reds. I count down the days to spring training every year and for the past few years accompanying spring training has been MLB.com’s App MLB.com At Bat. This year has been no different. I counted down the days until the Pitchers and catchers reported to Goodyear Arizona to the Cincinnati Reds new multimillion dollar training facility, and I also kept an eye on the App store for the updated version of At Bat. Last week At Bat 2011 disappeared so I knew 2012 was coming. What I found today both surprised and excited me! Not only did they release this year’s At Bat, but they made it 50% cheaper and as full featured as ever!

50% Cheaper!

The biggest improvement to MLB.com At Bat is the cost of the App. In years past At Bat was $14.99 per year which hasn’t changed. What has changed however is that it’s now a universal binary! So now, instead of paying $14.99 for my iPhone and another $14.99 for my iPad, it’s one price and one App across both devices! So if you used the previous versions of the App only on your iPhone, it’s no cheaper but if you are using it on multiple devices, you save $14.99! There is of course the “light” version that is free but you don’t get all of the features that you do in the paid version. Most notable for me is Gameday which is the live pitch by pitch account of the game.

Everything That You Love

The newest version of MLB.com At Bat has dropped the year indicator at the end of the name but that’s all it’s lost from last year. All of your favorite features from last year have been carried over to the 2012 version. Pick your favorite teams to keep track of, watch live games on your device (with a MLB.com subscription), read the latest news, stats, player bios and more! Everything that I mentioned in my review of MLB.com At Bat 2011 still holds true for this new version, but it’s just cheaper!

The Bottom Line

If you’re a Baseball fan, you can’t afford to not have this App. It’s the best way to enjoy the MLB anywhere you have your iPhone or iPad.

One Addition That’s Not For Everyone

If you have your iPhone or iPad Jailbroken, go to the Cydia store and download Location Spoofer. Location Spoofer lets you trick MLB.com At Bat (or any App for that matter) into thinking that you are in a different location than you really are. This is important for At Bat because there are times when games aren’t televised in your local area and are “blacked out” on MLB.com live view. If you trick your iPhone into thinking that you’re somewhere else, you can watch the game no matter what!

You can get MLB.com At Bat from the iTunes store for free here:  iTunes (Note: the $14.99 is an in App purchase)

 

NFL'11

NFL All Of The Time On Your iPhone and iPad

Here in Cincinnati, it's hard to be a NFL fan… Really hard… But we do the best we can to support our Bengals. Even as hard as the Bengals make it, I still like to follow what's going on around the NFL, particularly our division. Thanks to the NFL, we have NFL '11 for the iPhone and iPad to handle all of our Professional football needs. Like any App developed by a major entity (think Facebook, MLB, Twitter, etc.) expectations were high for me when I downloaded NFL '11 and it didn't disappoint.

Tons of Features Packed into One App

I don't know about you, but the first thing that I want to see when I fire up any sports App is the current score for my preset favorite team. As much as I hate to talk about what I don't like in an App almost first in the review, there is only ONE thing that I don't like so I hope you'll forgive me .;) I'd really like to see the ability to have more than one favorite team (especially on the iPad). I have a few teams that I follow, so it would be a nice inclusion.  Okay, done with what I don't like, on to what I DO like, which is everything else! The ability to set your favorite team is there, and when you launch the App that team's current score and live game activity (if a game is being played) shows up immediately.  

Beyond your favorite teams, there is a scores section that shows the scores for the rest of the NFL. Tapping the game time to the right of any game brings up one of my favorite parts of the App, the alerts box. Inside of this box you can tell the App to alert you when the game Starts, there is a scoring play, highlights happen, when the quarter is over and what the score is for that quarter, or when the game is over and what the final score is. All of these alerts are sent via Push so you never miss an important event in your selected game!

Of course like you would expect there is a news section showing you not only the entire league news, but also an option to quickly see just your favorite Team's news. There are lots of times when you want to quickly see what's happening with your favorite team, this makes it easy!

Personally, I don't get into Fantasy football. My brother (and I think half of the rest of the US) however really gets into it. NFL '11 has you covered. At the bottom, one of the main tabs is Fantasy 2011. From here you can log in to your fantasy league and… Do whatever it is that you do in Fantasy football.

Not to be forgotten there are options to see the schedule for the rest of the year for all of the teams, highlights, video clips, and photos from that week, buy tickets, shop at the NFL shop, and visit the about section for the App.

Keep Up With All of the Scores and More

If you are an avid football fanatic, or just the casual fan, get NFL '11 to help you easily keep up with your favorite teams and the rest of the league on your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.

 

Get NFL '11 for the iPhone from the iTunes store for Free here:iTunes
Get NFL' 11 for the iPad from the iTunes store for Free here: iTunes

MLBatbat2011

MLB.com At Bat 2011

 

Why you have to have it

I love baseball in Cincinnati. To me there's nothing better than an evening at Great American Ball Park with friends enjoying a game and maybe a hotdog and beverage. To that end, I really enjoy watching or keeping up with the Cincinnati Reds no matter if I'm at home, on the road, or just around town. With MLB.com At Bat 2011 I can do that and much, much more! At Bat 2011 is the BEST App available for MLB lovers bar none. Packed with enough content to make even the most stat hungry super fan happy but with an interface simple and streamlined, this App is perfect for any level of fan. If you are reading this review to see if you should get At Bat 2011 for your iPhone or iPad you can stop right here. You should. If you want to know about some of the features that make this App great… read on.

 

On the surface

On the surface this App is great for showing you your favorite teams, their schedules, latest scores, and current (if playing) scoring info.  When you launch the App for the first time you are presented with a screen to choose your favorite teams. For me this was easy. I chose the Cincinnati Reds, our division rivals the St. Louis Cardinals, and the Tampa Bay Rays. From there you select which of your favorite teams that you would like to know about at that time. For me I chose the Cincinnati Reds. You are presented with a screen that shows either the score of the current game (if playing), or the next scheduled game and who they are playing against. Below that you can get your Schedule and results along with many other choices. If you are like me, and don't get too into the stats of each person on the team, this is about as far as you'll go. You can see what is currently going on, when they play next, and what the outcome of the last game was.

If you want to dig a little deeper

If you want to dig a little deeper, they have you covered as well. You can press the little baseball silhouette directly below the current score and stats. This will take you into what's called "Gameday". Gameday is a live showing of what is currently going on at the game. There are icons to show how many men are on base, what the count is, pitcher and batter stats, etc. There is also a a graphical representation of the pitches that are being thrown to the batter that indicate where around the plate the ball was thrown, and also if it was a strike, ball, or foul.

 

Get it!

There are many, many more features that dive really far into the game of baseball that I never use. One of which is the MLB.com live viewing of the game with a subscription charge. The list just goes on and on. The features that I have mentioned above already make it a "Best App" in my book. Try it for yourself, tell me what you think.

 

You can get MLB.com At Bat 2011 for your iPhone from the iTunes Store for $14.99 here:iTunes

 

You can get MLB.com At Bat 2011 for your iPad from the iTunes Store for $14.99 here:iTunes