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Today's Best Apps: Strata, Pet Peaves Monsters, Where's My Water? 2 And More

The App Store takes delivery of hundreds of new apps per day. The overwhelming scene makes it possible to easily overlook an exciting game, valuable productivity suite, etc. However, we have a solution. Today’s Best Apps tackles this problem by providing you with a handpicked and tested list of apps that are truly worth your consideration each and everyday. Remember: Even though in-app purchases typically require your iTunes Store password for processing, you can further prevent them and other unauthorized actions by enabling local restrictions using the passcode locked iOS parental controls

Universal:

Pet Peaves Monsters by RED Interactive Agency (Free, 42.3 MB): Very similar to Little Inferno, this pet monster simulation app allows you to freely interact with strangely adorable creatures in a confined environment using many different objects. Identically essential as the aforementioned title, the attention you provide is the key to unlocking items and earning points. Among the items in the store, you'll find a Peave's favorite snack, fat and juicy grubs. Feed Peaves regularly to let them grow big and strong. Once they do, there's the option of having some extra fun. Likely the reason for their name, shaking Peaves makes them angry. That feistiness can then be put to entertainment use: battles. I know, pets attacking one another seems a bit evil, but think of it as roughhousing and, of course, the fictitious aspect. The game features 3-D graphics, charming sounds and music, 12 species, more than 80 food and toy items, three boxes and arenas, as well as Game Center achievements.

Strata by Graveck ($0.99, 26.1 MB): This wonderfully crafted puzzler is pleasing to many parts of the body, but most importantly, your mind. When I said crafty, I meant it as the elements and objective resembles an elegantly woven decoration. During each stage, you'll be shown a grid-like board containing colored blocks. On the sides of the board will be empty squares with accompanying arrows for indicating which direction the ribbon will extend. At the bottom of the screen are ribbons in identical colors as the squares. Your objective is to lay the ribbons over the squares so that the top one matches the solid square below. Difficulty stems from the layering aspect, i.e., extending the second ribbon overlaps any crossing below it, third overlaps the second and first, if present, and so on. To obtain a "Perfect" award, you mustn't retract any ribbons during attempts to solve, although, completely redoing a stage is acceptable. The game features flat graphics, instrumental soundtrack, dozens of stages spanning five sets with increasing board sizes and complexity, optional hints, and Game Center achievements. Access to the final two sets requires in-app purchases totaling $3.98.

Where's My Water? 2 by Disney (Free, 39.8 MB): In this sequel to the quirky physics-based puzzler, Swampy has new and trickier problems ruining bath time. For example, one of the first challenges is Duck Rush, an implementation of the endless falling mechanic. Basically, as the stage progresses downward automatically and uncontrollably, you're forced to dig paths based on no knowledge of what's ahead, potentially missing ducks and losing lots of water. Of course, that's only the beginning. Anyway, to balance these difficulty increasing bonus mechanics, Disney has also added handy power-ups like the Vacuum. Suffice it to say, there's a nice large variety of entertaining and mind exercising new content. The game features cartoony graphics, upbeat soundtrack, more than 100 stages, dozens of various challenges, power-ups, star-type duck rating system, Facebook friend leaderboards per stage, plus Game Center achievements.

Reeder 2 by Silvio Rizzi ($4.99, 6.9 MB): Primarily important for iPad owners, this successor to the acclaimed RSS reader is about bringing universal compatibility with a fine-tuned experience. Beyond a few button icon replacements, couple of hidden panel repositions, and some repainting, including an elegant black finish for the root screen, the user interface remains familiar. However, that doesn't mean things haven't notably changed, namely gestures. While viewing article and subscriptions lists, you can now pull the title bar at any time to refresh rather than scrolling to the very top of the page. If you're tired of marking entries as read one by one, just tap and hold at a point for options to mark everything above or below that line. Perhaps a little confusing at first, the final convenience involves edge grabs. In addition to swiping left almost anywhere while reading an article to open it within the built-in browser, doing the same from the very right side of the display will pull open the sharing panel. The same idea applies to the article list. A normal rightward swipe marks an article read or unread, but a drag from the very left edge sends you to the subscriptions and accounts panel. Regarding the iPad, everything is basically the identical except multiple panels may be shown on the larger display simultaneously.

Dead Effect by Bulkypix ($3.99, 354.3 MB): Get ready for some spooky action as you find a way to survive the mysterious and haunting zombie-like occurrences in this sci-fi first-person shooter. Taking the role of an elite combat unit, you awake unexpectedly from stasis. Not only does the vessel's artificially intelligent main computer indicate system failures, there are unidentified noises coming from the corridors as you investigate the problem. Soon, it will be apparent how dire the situation is, however, finding the cause and correcting the damage may take far longer. The game features 3-D graphics, story-based 5-hour campaign and survival arenas, male or female character choice, dual-thumb controls, two game save slots, and Game Center leaderboards.

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