Welcome to the 460th edition of Android Apps Weekly. Here are the big headlines from last week:
- Google rolled out several useful search features last week. Google Lens is getting a “multi-search near me” feature that looks for things you take photos of in your general location. Google Maps now has a new Live View, which also includes several features for EV owners. The list is too long for a summary like this, so hit the link to see all that’s new.
- Samsung owners are seeing an increasing problem. Many Samsung owners use the word Samsung as the password on their Samsung phones. That’s a security issue for many reasons, not least of which is that you shouldn’t use a password that’s the name of the thing you’re using. If you are one of those people, please consider changing your password.
- Android is an amazing ecosystem, and our writer Curtis Joe wants to explain why he thinks he is. As it turns out, being able to play the Japanese versions of many Japanese games, which are often much more developed than the global variants, is one of them. We’ve linked the article above if you want to read more about it.
- Google Messages adds the ability to react to any message you receive with any reaction you want. Currently, you’re limited to seven choices, but the beta now has a selector to use whatever you want. We don’t know when it will make it to the main app, but it should be in the coming weeks.
- Google warns users about common scams that occur during the holiday season. That includes donations to fake charities, gift and gift cards, crypto scams, and more. This is quite common this time of year as scammers like to take advantage of people’s good nature. Hit the link to learn more.
Price: Free to play
Neural Cloud is a gacha RPG. This one stands out in a sea of gacha RPGs with its unique combat. It’s a strategy RPG where you place pieces on the board, and they battle units that are already there. The developers say there’s a roguelike element where you can choose how you do battle, but it was a bit difficult for us.
In terms of general gameplay, there’s a lot you’ve seen before. You collect dolls to battle as you progress through the story. It has the same min-maxing as other gachas. The story and artwork aren’t too bad either. This should be quite popular as it does feel a bit different from other gachas.
Price: Free / $1.49 per month / $5.99 per year / $10.99 once
Goaly is a goal tracker app. It integrates with Google Calendar to help you see your goals in more than one place. This app works like many other purpose apps. You enter what you want to achieve and the app helps remind you to do those things. It boasts an AI that adjusts your goals based on your performance so you finish anyway, but maybe not in the original time frame you’d expect. We think overall to-do list apps are better for this, but something specific to your goals might be of use to some.
Price: Free to play
Canned Heroes is an idle RPG from Buff Studios, developers of some of our beloved visual novels. It uses a mix of idle RPG mechanics with a collection of gacha characters for its main mechanic. You increase your character’s power and, thus, progress through the game faster. This is a cute game with simple mechanics. The game is also playable offline, so you can play it anywhere. It’s a bit buggy, as new games usually are, but other than that, it’s a relatively cool experience.
Price: Free trial / $4.99 per month / $59.99 per year
OYE Wellness is a mental health wellness app. It supports English and Spanish. This app tries to help you define and understand your emotions. It then offers a variety of videos to help you work through what you’re dealing with on any given day. There is a free trial that lasts for two weeks, and then you have to pay for it. The app still needs work, but the idea is solid.
Sword Art Online VS
Price: Free to play
Sword Art Online Variant Showdown, or Sword Art Online VS for short, is the newest mobile game that uses popular anime properties. It follows Kirito and Asuna into a new game that reportedly causes memory loss in players. It’s an action RPG with pretty standard controls. You move around the game world and tap on the attacks you learn to deal damage. There’s also character customization, various power-up cards, and more.
We thought SAO’s use in other games was a bit old, and the game did have some issues out of the gate. However, we hope that these issues will be resolved sooner or later, and fans of the series will enjoy some of the new content from it.
If we missed any news or a major Android app or game release, let us know in the comments.
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