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Published on September 18th, 2014 | by gareth

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4 Console Companion Apps & How to Use Them

4 Console Companion Apps & How to Use Them

As smartphones and tablets have become a ubiquitous part of our media experience, game developers and designers have sought to integrate them with our gaming experiences. Second screen use is here to stay. 85 percent of smartphone users reported using a mobile device as a media companion at least once a month, according to Business Insider. While TV producers are happy with apps that allow for a social experience while watching, game developers have taken companion applications to a whole new level. Here are just a few companion apps you should check out.

XBox Smartglass

XBOX Smartglass is a console companion app that allows players to use their mobile devices and tablets as a second screen or game controller. Linked in with many XBox games, it allows stat tracking and social media access for various titles, applications, and more. According to WP Central, it even featured a tool to track 2012 United States Election coverage. Microsoft’s app strives to enhance your experience with your XBox with access to walkthroughs for your games, behind-the audio commentary, and real-time multiplayer strategy guides all in the palm of your hand. With the XBox Smartglass app, you can navigate the entire Xbox Dashboard and even use your smartphone as a remote for console applications such as Netflix.

Assassin’s Creed IV Companion

The Assassin’s Creed: Black Flag companion is a unique app that allows the immersion of the game to continue off console. Featuring a fully interactive world map that allows players to see objectives in-game, search the map and set objectives. If you have a smartphone with an HD screen like the Galaxy S5, use the device to involve a friend in your single player game while you’re away from home. The Kenway’s Fleet feature in the app allows you to manage your pirate fleet entirely from the app, sending your ships on trade missions or battling privateers across the Atlantic ocean. The Animus Database is a treasure trove of in-game lore, and the Initiates Feed lets you stay in contact with friends and check in on in-game community challenges. All in all, the Assassin’s Creed IV companion app is well-appreciated addition to the game.

Destiny Companion

While Destiny is still available only to beta players for a few more excruciating weeks, the Destiny app has already been released by Bungie for those lucky gamers who are testing the game before its release in September. Bungie (creators of the acclaimed Halo) have created the official Destiny Companion app with the ability to track your Guardian’s statistics, perform player analytics, and compare Grimoire scores with friends. The Destiny app is well-tested and ready for second screen use, but if you aren’t beta testing the game right now, you can still use it to keep track of any Destiny news and updates while you wait for the game to be released September 9th.

Watch Dogs: ctOS

Watch Dogs developer Ubisoft has gone further than any other game developer when it comes to creating an immersive companion app that mirrors the feel and mood of their game. Not only is the official page feel ripped right out of the gritty world of Watch Dogs, but the app itself seamlessly creates an entirely new type of multiplayer experience that feels perfectly in line with Watch Dogs’ hack-centric gameplay. Playing in-app as a CTOS operative in control of the Chicago Police Department, you connect with in-game players and control the entire city as you try to thwart them from racing through various checkpoints. This multiplayer mode lets you interact with friends and rivals in the world of Watch Dogs from wherever you may be, and the unique nature of this new multiplayer mode is unlike anything you’ve played before in a companion app.


About the Author

Syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. His work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site and publication “Skewed and Reviewed”.He has three books of film, game reviews and interviews published and is a well-received and in demand speaker on the convention circuit. Gareth has appeared in movies and is a regular guest on a top-rated Seattle morning show.He has also appeared briefly in films such as “Prefountaine”, “Postal”. “Far Cry”. and others. Gareth is also an in-demand speaker at several conventions and has conducted popular panels for over two decades.



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