The Apple App Store crew released its list of top North American apps for 2011 this week, naming EA's Dead Space as its choice for best iPad game and NimbleBit's skyscraper-sim Tiny Tower as its favorite pick for iPhones.
Announced as part of iTunes' Rewind 2011 feature, the mobile games were chosen by the App Store team for their creativity, production values, and overall contributions to the iOS gaming; and not necessarily how much digital coin they raked in over the past year.
Justifying their selection of Tiny Tower to Wired.com, for instance, Apple reps said it was the sim's freemium model that attracted them most, explaining, “We believe that Tiny Tower’s success has sprung from putting players first and giving them a fun and unique game that truly is free to play. There is nothing in the game that you can only get by paying, and a lot of players really respect that.”
But while Isaac Clarke and tiny workers ruled out West, the results were different across the globe. In the UK, Chillingo's Contre Jour was named number one for iPads, while Andreas Illiger's one-tap Tiny Wings flapped into first place for iPhones. Elsewhere, Firemint's (also EA) Real Racing 2 was reported as Apple's favorite iPad game in its Australia and New Zealand zones.
Gripe about mobile games all you want, but we can't disagree with Apple's picks. Both Dead Space, Tiny Tower, and we certainly developed a crush on Tiny Wings as well. What do you make of these App Store honorees?