I have a friend who had to ask her partner to uninstall Freecell from all the computers in their household so she could continue living her life. I just took a leaf out of that book.
You keep a virtual fishtank, cleaning and feeding as required. The amusing part of the game is that you can breed different species of fish to create hilarious and sometimes beautiful mutants. It takes about 3 days for the fish to breed, so the pace of Tapfish is slow and ongoing- which is somewhat refreshing. The downside of this game, however, is you have to use real money or engage in advertising and promotional behaviour to buy the interesting fish. As I refuse to do this, I will uninstall this game as soon as I have created my long-nosed angel fish and taken a screen grab for posterity.
The music in this is mesmerizing and relaxing. There is a “winds of change”-like sound effect when all your coloured balls snake into the black-hole and you lose. There are about 90 levels. The aim is to match strings of coloured balls which then burst and reduce the length of your snake. If you can’t burst them, they disappear into the hole and you get to try the level again, and again…and again. It’s similar to Puzzle Bobble, but more varied and with an Asian bent – each screen has a ying and yang area and the coloured balls roll along different shaped paths in each level. Highly recommended.
The graphics of this game scream early nineties rave. I didn’t really play it much.
The Art of Glow
An experimental application made by the team (person?) who made Glow Hockey. This is an interactive realtime graphics display, which makes you feel as you have stepped into a good wharehouse party at the docks. There’s no aim to it -or levels- it’s just lovely to look at. I think this could keep a child or a graphic designer amused for at least 3 minutes.
The original text-based game invented in 1984 is one of my top 3 all-time favourite games.* You are a drug dealer with a measly starting budget. You must travel to different locations in New York, buying drugs when they are cheap and selling them when demand is high (for big profits.) Police and thieves attempt to thwart your efforts. The Android version is disappointing because you constantly get mugged if you don’t put your money in the bank. What a drag.
I was introduced to the original version of this game (Bejewelled) on the internet by my friend’s mother. When the player groups three or more of the same type of gemstones together, they shatter and the arrangement shuffles around. It’s a long and constant battle to create order, which never arrives. This version is all about the sound effects – imagine dropping marbles into a cannister followed by thin, expensive glass shattering. Delightful.
Installed on a recent whim, I’m not convinced this will be a stayer. Capitalising on the swipe touch-screen action, your finger is transformed into sword which slices through 3D fruits such as pineapple, pears, strawberries and so on. It is a fun idea. I am obsessed with the inside view of the fruit, which happens to be rendered quite well on this game, so Fruit Slice did capture my imagination.
Sokoban TAG (Pictured left.)
Out of all the phone games I have played, I think this one is the best for challenging the brain. It is a copy, or version, of the 1982 Japanese game Sokoban (meaning “warehouse keeper”) where a cute character strategically pushes boxes into designated spaces. Objects and wall obstacles ensure the box-moving is carried out carefully and in a specific order. I’m stuck on level 10.
Remember those plastic sliding puzzle toys from the 80s? This is similarly puzzlish, but a lot more challenging because the sliding shapes vary from the square norm.
It’s just like the nine-letter target word from The Age newspaper. I couldn’t love it because it allows ‘s’ plurals and weird slang.
Air Control Lite
This game reminds me of work: stressful multi-tasking to the point of mental and physical breakdown. Not recommended for playing before bedtime.
*The other two are Ms Pacman and Rez.