New Birds Game “Guano!” Available On iTunes

Guano Birds Targeting Game for iPhone and iPadIt’s not the birds who are angry… it’s the people.

Guano! – The bird pooping game is the latest, hilarious and fun iPhone/iPad game from Big Goose Egg.

With a birds-eye view of parks, cities and campgrounds, Guano! users steer their bird characters overhead in search of targets.

The unsuspecting people below quickly catch on and begin to fight back. The better you get at hitting your targets, the more they throw things at you.

Steer by tilting the device to fly over never-ending maps. More

Derby Quest Horse Racing Wins April Platinum Egg

Platinum Egg Award Winner - Best iPad Games and iPhone GamesBig Goose Egg Games is all about bringing you the best free mobile games, whether they are ours or not. Every month, we issue a Platinum Egg Award that goes to the best up-and-coming iPhone or Android games. Most often, they are free. And for sure, my kids have to enjoy them. The winner for the month of April is Derby Quest Horse Racing by Tapsy.

Derby Quest Horse Racing lets you raise horses from babies up to derby champions. Raise them, feed them, breed them and race them. You can build a stable of several horses… even tens… I guess even hundreds (I’m not sure of the upper limit if there is one). But either way, it’s fun for everyone.

Derby Quest Horse Racing Wins April 2012 Platinum Egg Award - Best iPhone gameDerby Quest lets you control your horse during the races too. There’s the slower pace of feeding and maintaining your horses, making sure you’re keeping them in tip-top shape for the races. But then, you get the faster pace of an actual race or qualifying laps. Derby Quest Horse Racing has awesome graphics & because of that, is not formatted for older devices. So, double-check their description for whether or not your device is supported.

If so, get Derby Quest – it’s fun and it’s FREE.

Learn more about the Platinum Egg Award.

Ninja Bugs Plus Wins March Platinum Egg Award

Platinum Egg Award Winner - Best iPad Games and iPhone GamesThe Platinum Egg Award goes to the best up-and-coming (and often free) iPhone or Android games that my kids enjoy. The winner for the month of March is Ninja Bugs Plus by One Haze.

Ninja Bugs Plus takes the best of Fruit Ninja and the best of Ant Smasher and combines them into something better. Practice your crazy ninja skills with your sword slicing and dicing gestures. And you don’t just slice bugs. You also slice the pieces left over from the previous swing of the sword.

Ninja Bugs Plus Wins March 2012 Platinum Egg Award - Best iPhone gameAlong the way you have to avoid the bug zappers… because they’re also sword zappers. The pace of the game separates it from the others by adding an element of (good) stress as you near your high score. Ninja Bugs Plus has 4 modes to choose from – No Zappers, Sting Mode, Bug Attack Arcade Mode, and Bug Blast Classic Mode.

Try Ninja Bugs Plus – it’s FREE.

Learn more about the Platinum Egg Award.

iPhone Games in Education – NASA Engineer Demos Angry Birds in Space

Angry Birds Space demo by NASA is an example of using successful iPhone games to encourage learning about science, space, and physics (and probably an alternative revenue source for a government agency struggling for survival… but that’s not the point). Like learning from stories, learning through games is something kids do naturally. A single iPhone game is not enough for gamification of learning, though, it still requires engagement – by parents, by teachers, and by other children.

You can try Angry Birds Space here:

Just to be clear, these are affiliate links. This means that if you click through them, it is possible that I may earn a (piddly) commission. Of course, if you want, you could just go through the iTunes store directly.

Gamification – Medical Uses For iPhone Games In The ER

Gamification is applying game design features to non-games (usually to encourage participation or to make mundane tasks not-so-boring). And many of you know that, as a physician who loves marketing, persuasion, humor and making iPhone games, it goes without saying that my favorite part of what I do is when I combine all of these elements.

Well, not the ideal situation for me to try more gamification of healthcare, but nonetheless it seemed appropriate to me… My son has his second trip in seven months to the Emergency Department for stitches. This time, he collided with one of his sisters & then apparently fell hitting his head on the side of a chair. The head and scalp are loaded with blood vessels so you can imagine what a bloody mess it was.

Any time there’s head trauma, though, you have to be concerned to what extent. There is always a period of watching consciousness. Thankfully, he never lost consciousness, but during that period immediately after the injury and stopping the bleeding, I wanted to be sure that he was himself.

Gamification in Healthcare - Dr Tori Tries Using iPhone Games in the Emergency RoomThis injury occurred right around his normal nap time. So when you’re assessing for consciousness, you have to wonder – how much of this is just needing a nap (especially after all of the crying and commotion)? And how much of this is related to head trauma?

Well, here’s my theory (and it is just a theory, now tested only on an n of one): Parents can detect subtle changes in their children by watching them perform a task they’ve performed many times before. Obvious right? Well, why not try that with iPhone games? My theory was that if my son could play my new game (test build) like he had been playing the past few days, then his drowsiness a few minutes before is more likely to be from needing a nap than from the effects of brain injury. (Anyone who has kids knows that when they’re tired, they can briefly snap out of it to do something they love… and he loves the new Big Goose Egg game, Guano!)

Let’s be very, very clear, though… Total brain rest is recommended in the early post-concussion period. This means no video games, no TV, etc. But that is for treatment. Right now, I’m talking about diagnostics. I’m talking about a parent detecting differences in their child enough to tell a clinician.

(And although I am a physician, none of this should be taken as medical advice. Your situation is unique to you and requires its own doctor-patient relationship with a qualified professional.)

So, anyway, he’s fine. With pressure the bleeding stopped and he tolerated the stitches with only local anesthetic. The only problem now is convincing him he doesn’t need a Band-Aid anymore and keeping him away from my iPhone and my iPad.

Doodle Fire Wins February Platinum Egg Award

Best iPad Games and iPhone Games - Platinum Egg Award WinnerThe Platinum Egg Award goes to the best up-and-coming iPhone or Android games as determined by nothing other than me and my kids. The game has to be fun to play, easy to start playing, fun, and visually appealing. And all of my kids must love it. And preferably, it is a game that not a lot of people heard of yet. This month’s winner is Doodle Fire by JUUQ Mobile.

Doodle Fire has awesome doodle graphics, hilarious sound effects, and surprisingly good game physics. I have mentioned before that having six children like I do, often means that it is difficult to find something they all like. Not so with Doodle Fire… My younger ones love the fire trucks & fire fighters (especially my son). My oldest loves the fact that she’s saving people from a burning building. And the ones in between can barely get past the second or third levels because they’re giggling so much – mostly because of the things the people say when you save them.

Doodle Fire Wins February 2012 Platinum Egg Award - Best iPhone gameYou know how sometimes you play a game with the sound effects off? Maybe because you’re in public? Or maybe your spouse won’t look too favorably upon you playing yet another game? Or maybe the kids need to do their homework and hearing you playing on your iPhone or iPad is the last distraction they need, right? Well, Doodle Fire is one of those games you find yourself saying, “Who cares? I’m turning this up.” The sound effects are superb.

The only frustrating part about Doodle Fire, at least in it’s early versions, is that the levels do not seem to stay unlocked if you leave the game & come back to them. So far, though, neither I nor my kids seem to care. Doodle Fire is fun.

Learn more about the Platinum Egg Award.

Help An Awesome Artist Make An iPhone Game

Check out this project from artist Jesse Kuhn from RawToastDesign – he’s using his artwork from The Departure as inspiration for a fun iphone game. And you can be a part of that through his KickStarter project (and get some cool prizes in the process).

Personally, I’m debating about one of the higher levels of sponsorship and getting flying behind one of the planes in the game. Plus, I’d love to have some of Jesse’s artwork on gift cards, postcards, etc. He’s really giving away some great stuff to sponsors. Check it out.

I have the RawToastDesign app on my device. I use it for cool backgrounds.

Related Links:

Monster Magic Wins The January Platinum Egg Award

Best Free iPad Games and iPhone Games - Platinum Egg Award WinnerWhen trying to find the best up-and-coming iPhone or Android games for the Platinum Egg Award, one of the first signs of a potential winner is if my youngest children (I have 6) can pick up the game and start playing immediately… without instruction. That’s exactly what happened when they tried Monster Magic by Secret Headquarters, Inc.

Awesome cartoon-type graphics with spiffy animations add to the attractiveness of the game. But with six kids of varying ages, it is usually hard to find something that appeal to all of them. Not so with Monster Magic… There are 12 different characters to choose from. Most of my daughters love the unicorn. My son loves the wooly mammoth-looking thing. And me? I like the Jawa Dude… (I’m a Star Wars geek)

Monster Magic Wins January 2012 Platinum Egg Award - Best iPhone gameSome might argue that Monster Magic is similar to many in the jumping game genre, but I have them. Both me and my kids find ourselves playing Monster Magic more than the others.

Part of that might also be the music. In addition to the awesome graphics, balanced gameplay, and choices of characters, the music is actually kind of stressful and fun at the same time. And when we’re competing against each other, it’s even more stressful. The kids looking over your shoulder making comments, the music in the background…. man, it’s fun.

Learn more about the Platinum Egg Award.

Mobile Gaming – Big Goose Egg Is Here!

Free iPad Games and iPhone Games from Big Goose Egg

Most Big Goose Egg games are free, ultra-fun mobile games for iPhones, iPods, iPads, and Android devices. They are free because, well, who wants to pay to try a game? Not us… And not you, either.

So, how does Big Goose Egg make money then? Is it through ads? Nope. Ads are annoying. Don’tcha think? More