Five to Try: Nintendo's Fire Emblem Heroes ignites, and Fox Sports has Super Bowl clips in VR

Check out the Play Store's most exciting new apps and games.

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Credit: Andrew Hayward

Looking for some fresh Android apps and games to keep you busy this weekend? Well, Nintendo might have something for you, thanks to this week’s release of Fire Emblem Heroes, a rich, free-to-play strategy game. It leads off our latest Five to Try roundup, which is co-headlined by Fox Sports VR, an updated app that promises streaming Super Bowl footage in VR this Sunday. 

Also new this week are the official Lego Life community app, board game adaptation Potion Explosion, and WWE Champions, a blend of theatrical brawling and matching gems. Grab a few fresh apps and make sure you’re all set for the days ahead.

Fire Emblem Heroes

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Don’t know Fire Emblem? Heroes can ease you into it.

Nintendo’s first big Android game isn’t Super Mario Run; no, we’ll have to wait another month for that one. Instead, we get Fire Emblem Heroes, a game that isn’t as widely known but is surely worth a look by anyone who digs a meaty strategy game. This turn-based tactical combat game drops you into a fantasy world of warring nations and dimensions, and you’ll bring a squad into each battle and try to emerge victorious via smart attacks and movements.

Fire Emblem Heroes is scaled down from the cult-favorite entries on Nintendo’s own systems, but still maintains enough of a strategic edge to appeal to fans of hardcore games. It’s a free-to-play release, however, and you’ll have plenty of opportunity to buy orbs to spend on unlocking heroes and other premium perks. At first blush, it seems really slick and nicely optimized for touch devices, although we’ll have to see if it has longevity to match.

Fox Sports VR

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Hope the Super Bowl is still super in bite-sized VR clips.

Looking for somewhere to watch the big game this weekend? How about in virtual reality? That’s the tantalizing proposition (sort of) provided by the Fox Sports VR app, which can be used with a Cardboard viewer, or you can simply view the footage on your device if you prefer not to jam your phone up to your eyeballs.

The Fox Sports VR app won’t have the entire game streaming on Sunday; instead, it will offer highlights that are uploaded quickly after they happen, and you’ll be able to view those from the virtual screening room. And each clip will be viewable from six different angles on the fly, so at least there’s one cool advantage even if things aren’t unfolding in real time. However, note that you’ll need a cable or satellite login to use the app this weekend.

Lego Life

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Living that Lego life? Here’s the app for you.

Android has no shortage of Lego-inspired games—including the recent The Lego Batman Movie Game—but if you’re immersed in the world of the plastic bricks, then you’ll probably be pleased to dig into Lego Life as well. Something of an official community for Lego-ficionados, Lego Life lets you make your own digital minifigure, share photos with Lego stickers on them, and take part in amusing photo challenges. 

Some challenges simply have you decorate digital images within the app, while others task you with taking a photo of a real Lego minifig in some particular environment. Although there’s nothing really at stake or up for grabs with these challenges, it could provide a quick bit of fun for die-hard Lego fans.

Potion Explosion

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Brew magical concoctions and trounce your friends, too.

From the board game to your Android phone—and thankfully free of any actual explosions, mind you—Potion Explosion ($5) brings the multiplayer favorite to the Play Store. Gone are the colorful marbles and potion cards from the physical game, but Potion Explosion maintains the charming look in this digital format, and lets you play in both local and online brewing battles.

Each turn, you’ll pick an ingredient from the dispenser and add it to your stockpile, all while hopefully creating some chain reactions on the puzzle grid. From there, you’ll attempt to concoct special potions that can give you an advantage against foes, or others that you can turn against your opponents. Can you win out in this battle of witchcraft and chemistry?

WWE Champions

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Yes, this is a very odd mash-up.

Of all the strange WWE spinoff video games over the years that don’t have you control an actual wrestler in a ring, WWE Champions might be the strangest of them all. True, there are hulking wrestlers on the screen, trading blows and executing their iconic moves, but all you’re really doing is matching Bejeweled-like gems at the bottom of the screen to make them fight.

Yes, the WWE really made a puzzle RPG. You’ll swap turns finding the best match on the board, and once you’ve linked up three or more like-colored gems and set off any combo chains that follow, your fighter will lay the smack down on his opponent. It’s silly, for sure, but it works—and WWE Champions has loads of top current and classic fighters, all portrayed in a nicely cartoonish, over-the-top fashion.

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