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Aralon: Sword and Shadow HD available for free through new Free Play program

Touch Arcade blogs about iOS games, and they've just announced Free Play, which will periodically feature selected iOS games for free. There are quite a few programs like this around, of which Free App a Day is probably the most popular. But a lot of those programs do things such as charge developers to be promoted on the service, essentially selling installs to boost chart listings, Touch Arcade's Eli Hodapp tells TUAW that this program will specifically pick games based on quality.

"Everything 'free' nowadays," he says, "has a catch deserving of a giant asterisk and a load of fine print. We just want to work with developers to get people playing their games."

Free Play will target games chosen by the site's editors as quality titles and one that have only been sold as paid apps, making them free for a limited time.

"Take your typically heavily promoted free game," Hodapp says. "Chances are moments before the game goes on sale, an update lands that totally rebalances the game into a free-to-play [in-app purchase]-powered experience, at which point it's hardly even a 'sale' or 'deal.'"

The Free Play promotion will offer new titles periodically, and Hodapp says the plan is to offer selections "as often as we can but seldom enough that they still feel special."

The first title chosen to go free is Crescent Moon Games' Aralon: Sword and Shadow HD, a 3D-roleplaying game that's been popular on the App Store. It'll be interesting to see which titles are chosen with a strategy like this, and the end result is a great one: We all get more free games.

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