Emerging Top-Grossing iOS Apps: Updates Support TeamLava, Bolt, PopCap

Very few new titles have broken into the top grossing lists again. New entrants on the iPad list were especially scarce, leading to a focus on recently updated old applications such as Quickoffice Pro HD and Angry Birds Rio HD.

Other older, and past profiled, apps for iPad that remained unhighlighted but still rank high and hold new updates are GarageBand (#10), ForeFlight Mobile HD Aviation Weather (#12), and Splashtop Remote Desktop for iPad (#15). That said, all of these apps are typically ranked fairly high.

New Titles Within Top Grossing iPhone Apps List

Hanging With FriendsHanging With Friends — Yesterday’s #2 paid app is now today’s #3 top grossing iPhone app. Hanging With Friends is social-mobile game from Zynga-acquired Zynga With Friends (formerly known as Newtoy). The $1.99 application (currently on sale) is a variation of the word game of “Hangman” that uses scoring mechanics similar to that of Zynga With Friends’ other title, Words With Friends. In the game, players must construct mystery words in order to try and stump their opponents in turn-based, synchronous play. Hanging With Friends is the first release from Texas-based Zynga With Friends since their being acquired. The game was released June 9th.

Bakery Story Rises With Weekly Updates — The iOS developer, TeamLava, is part of Redwood Shores-based Storm8, and is known for creating mobile variations of popular social games. One of its past hits, however, Bakery Story, is rising up the top grossing iPhone charts once again to reach #11 (#22 on iPad). In the game, players asynchronously work with friends to create and manage their own bakery, sharing gifts, leaving each other tips, and earning in-game currency. As a freemium game, it monetizes via the in-app purchasing of a virtual currency called “Gems.” The rise of the game appears due to weekly updates, with the last being a June 9th update, that added new features such as challenges and tasks (which can help guide newer players), manually collecting experience, and general bug fixes. Ironically, most players appear to greatly dislike the changes.

Baseball Superstars II Pro — In at #13 is another game from yesterday, Baseball Superstars II Pro. Released June 7th, the new baseball game is the latest in the Superstars franchise, but as is customary with the series, boasts a collection of ridiculous and off-the-wall anime-style characters. Each one has their own superpowers when it comes to abilities such as pitching, and now players can even create their own, customizable version of these “super skills.” As it stands, the game costs $0.99, but further monetizes itself via in-app purchases. Its developer is long time games developer and publisher, Gamevil, who is based out of both L.A. and Seoul.

Plants vs ZombiesPlants vs. Zombies Rises With Zen Garden Update — Popular Seattle-based casual and mobile games developer, PopCap Games knows how to make a strong game, and Plants vs. Zombies, at #16, is a perfect example. The game has always done well, but a significant content update, on June 9th, which adds not only more mini-games and achievements, but also a new game mode called “Zen Garden,” has spurred new growth. Reminscient of social farming games, Zen Garden allows players to grow and care for a garden of the game’s quirky plants on a daily basis and earn monetary rewards that can be spent on upgrades in the game’s Adventure Mode. The tower defense-style game runs $2.99, and while it’s iPad version holds the #21 spot, it hosts no similar update.

Pocket God: Journey To Uranus — Content updates show their lucrativeness once again as Pocket God: Journey To Uranus rises up to the #19 spot this week on the top grossing iPhone apps list. The game is a compilation of comical mini-games that often involve the killing of cartoon pygmies, that the Pocket God franchise is known for, in some way, shape, or form. Its latest update (June 7th) comes with a new mini-game called “Quantum Entanglement.” A memory game, users search for various “entangled atoms” that are floating in space. Once found, users must find the other that appears elsewhere, but must be wary of black holes. The game is made by San Francisco-based iOS developer Bolt Creative and currently costs $0.99.

New Titles Within Top Grossing iPad Apps List

QuickofficeQuickoffice Pro HD — Quickoffice Pro HD is an old iPad title that recently received a content update on June 7th. The application is a business tool that allows users to effectively create, edit, share Microsoft Office documents, presentations, and spreadsheets. Additionally, the app hosts a “Connected Filemanager” that allows users to remotely access web-based files such as those from Google Docs. The update has added features such as a new find and replace functionality to the Quickword and Quicksheet functionality as well as general enhancements. More than this however, the mobile office applications developer Quickoffice (a privately held, Dallas-based company, with offices around the world) has dropped the price of the Quickoffice Pro HD to $14.99 as a 40% off sale.

Angry Birds Rio HD — The $2.99 Angry Birds Rio HD holds the #16 spot on iPad this week due to a new content update. Like past games, it is yet another physics title in which users launch various types of destructive birds to topple structures atop enemies. Based on the film, Rio, players must rescue the heroes of the movie, Blu and Jewel while defeating an army of monkeys. The update, has added the latest episode to the game called “Samba,” and with it comes 15 new levels and a completely new bird type.  Creator Rovio Mobile is a Finland-based, and award winning, mobile developer founded in 2003. Moreover, the company recently announced the bringing of its Angry Birds franchise to web. Angry Birds Rio is also ranked #17 on iPhone.

The Waste LandThe Waste Land — Digital book, The Waste Land holds the #18 spot on iPad. The title costs $13.99 and is an iPad version of the 1922 poem, The Waste Land, from T.S. Eliot. That application also comes with a video performance synchronized to the text, audio readings, expert perspectives analyzing the poem, as well as added information on all of Eliot’s allusions and references in the piece. The company behind the app is a small London-based digital books publisher called Touch Press.

Osmos — Osmos is 2010’s iPad Game of the Year, and despite its age, appears at #35 on the top grossing iPad apps list. A very unique concept, players control an organic orb that must grow larger by consuming those that are smaller than it. That said, players must sacrifice size to move and collect these smaller “motes,” with levels ranging from petri dishes to deep space. Its growth is derivative of an “Equinox” sale that brought the price down to $0.99, but now that it is back at $4.99 its top ranking positions (both here and on the paid apps list) have begun dropping. The title is created by indy game developer Hemisphere Games, a small Canadian outfit with under ten employees. The game was last updated December 14th.

Snapseed for iPad — The last app today is ranked in at #42 and is also a title from yesterday’s top paid list. Snapseed for iPad is a new (released June 7th) photography app from developer Nik Software. The application is priced at $4.99 and allows users to easily fix, edit, and share their photos. Features include an auto correct function, image filters, image tuning (e.g. white balance), and borders. As for San Diego-based Nik Software itself, the company was founded back in 1995 and is a company focused on digital imaging and photography.