I have heard it said that there is nothing good to be found on the App Store for gaming. It's a lawless wasteland of microtransactions, puzzle games and cheap Minecraft rip-offs. I tend to point these people towards Juniper's Knot. It's a small little visual novel released on April 13th of 2012, first available for the PC/Mac but now on the App Store. The game was made by Dischan Media (now sadly non gone like the dinosaurs) in little under a month. The game centers around two characters, known only as "Fiend" and "Boy", as they help one another to overcome the others problems.
Firstly I'd like to say that it's a visual novel, and I know that always leads to the question of if a visual novel is really a video game or not. We'll dive into that argument one day, just not today. The reason I picked it to discuss first is because I really like it, and it always pains me to see something that is genuinely good go ignored.
You'll have noticed in the first paragraph that it was made in less than 30 days and this is by no means something you're going to notice while playing the game. The attention to detail is astounding and right off the bat I found myself thinking that it must have taken around a year to make considering how small the list of people who worked at Dischan Media was. I finished Junipers Knot in about thirty minutes when I first played it but despite its length the visual presentation and writing are superb, which is always a pleasant surprise when you look at anything advertising itself as a game on the app store.
I don't want to spoil the plot for you too badly because I do think you will enjoy it more going in knowing as little as possible and figuring it all out for yourself but here's a basic summary: Boy is lost and stumbles upon Fiend as she muses on her current predicament and the two begin to talk. Juniper's Knot centers around the ensuing conversation and the soundtrack that is constantly playing in the background the entire time is very good at helping set the mood and tone, as there is no voice acting. The most interaction you get with the game is clicking the screen to bring up the next panel of the story, but I that's the same with most every game on the App Store. The soundtrack is emotive but it isn't at all overbearing in the slightest and you'll quickly forget there is even music playing as you become immersed in what's happening on your screen.
All in all, Juniper's Knot has a odd but unique plot and was a great read and every few months I find myself going back to re-play it. My only regret is that Dischan Media no longer exists because I would gladly pay another dollar or even five for a sequel. It's perfect for if you get stuck on the train or bus, or need to kill some time. Right now its $0.99 on the App Store but is free to download for your computer from the Dischan website.