An updated list of my favorite games on the iPhone. All of these games were available as of December 2011! Click on the Game Name to buy it in the App Store!Continue reading
A couple of weeks ago, I offered my favorite iPhone apps. But since all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, here are the games that keep me entertained. Nearly every game has a lite or free version you can get to try it out first. But they’re all worth the (meager) price you’ll pay.
Zombie Smash is a fun, addictive game in which you’re defending your homestead from hungry legions of undead. How? By flinging them with your thumbs. It’s got a great set of up-gradable weapons, quite a few types of zombies (each with its own characteristics) and difficulty settings to keep it plenty tough. Plus they keep putting out upgrades for it, so the fun never stops!
Plants vs. Zombies + geoDefense
Okay, you caught me. I’m minorly obsessed with Zombies. But I grouped these two games together because they’re two of the best tower-defense games out there. In PvZ, you’re a homeowner who purchases increasingly deadly plants from your crazy neighbor to fend off the hoards of undead (who of course want to eat your brains). gD is a much simpler game in which you construct turrets to destroy wave after wave of geometric shapes (each with their own speed/strength). Both are challenging and addictive; they’ll keep you entertained (or, quite possibly, frustrated) for hours.
This is one of the most popular games out there right now (if Twitter and sales have anything to say about it). Two minutes of play will show you why. Evil pigs have stolen your eggs, so you do what any bird naturally would: you hurl yourself (via a slingshot you aim with your finger) at the pigs’ homes and castles in order to destroy them. You have four different kinds of birds and these levels are hard. You’ll have plenty of time to work on them, because once you download this game, it’s not like you’ll be working.
Speaking of reasons you’ll never work again, meet DoodleJump. This game is advertised as the most addictive game on the iPhone and they may be right. The gameplay is impossibly simple. You jump from platform to platform, steering your jumper by tilting the phone back and forth. Tap the screen to shoot monsters (or jump on them) and that’s it. The game has several different skins (space, undersea, world cup, Halloween, etc.) that change the gameplay ever-so-slightly to keep things interesting. I’ve only owned the game for about a month now, and my friends and I have already dumped several hours into it. Did I mention it’s addictive?
Words With Friends/ Chess With Friends
Scrabble is one of the most maddening games imaginable. How are you supposed to make a word with three O’s, an A, E, X and Q? Well, I can’t, which is why I always lose. So what better reason to play against me? Create an account and get started. Find a partner and then play as often as you like – each person will be notified when it’s his/her turn, and you can take as long as you need to find that killer word. I wish more than two persons could play a single game, but it’s still tremendous fun. My user name is jrforasteros, if you want to play (and if you’re a chess player, it’s equally fun).
SkiBall + Paper Toss
Both of these games are also good, simple fun. They both have the same gameplay – you swipe your finger across the screen to throw your skiball or paperwad. SkiBall is a blast, and just like in real skiball, you collect tickets you can redeem for prizes. I already bought Manda and panda bear and now I’m saving up for an 8-ball skiball. Paper Toss is perfect for the office – you are trying to become the world champion paper-tosser, throwing paperwads into a trashcan (taking into account the wind currents created by the fan). Since both games track high scores, you’ll constantly be fighting with your friends to maintain your first-place status.
Last, but by no means least is Flood-It! Again, the gameplay is pretty simple. You’re presented with a board comprised of squares of six different colors. You begin in the top-left corner and change the color of the squares until the whole board is one color. Oh, and you have an extremely limited number of moves. If you like puzzle games, don’t miss this one.
That’s it. My best-of-the-best. What are your favorites?
A bunch of my friends have recently gotten iPhones, and since I’ve had mine for about a year now, many of them have asked what my favorite apps are. So may I present my favorite, most useful apps! (Games are coming later)
Let’s start with Social Media
No surprise that Google would put out a great mobile app. It’s got a voice search feature and is pretty well-integrated with the full range of Google apps (mail, reader, ect., including the Maps app that comes on the phone). Keeps you connected and informed – everything you need to thrive on Web 2.0.
Again, probably a no-brainer, but Facebook’s app just gets better and better with each update. They just added a geo-tagging piece, presumably to compete with Foursquare. A few (very) minor complaints aside, this brings the full functionality of Facebook to the iPhone in an intuitive, beautiful interface.
Twitter: Echofon or Twitter (duh)
I used Echofon for quite a while (the pro version is $5), and I like it a lot. I recently started using Twitter’s own (free) app, and it’s definitely comparable – especially for free. If you’re a regular Twitter user, these apps are the best two options (with TweetDeck a close runner-up).
This is a reader app – it syncs like a dream with Google Reader. It’s a bit pricy, but fantastic. The interface is beautiful and intuitive and the sync is quick. It’s easy to customize and syncing it once a day lets you read your posts anywhere you go, even when you can’t access wifi or 3G. Oh, and it’s a snap to send posts to friends and colleagues. I tried several free reader apps before I broke down and bought Byline, and it’s well worth the price.
And now for productivity and lifestyle!
If you own a Mac, I’m pretty sure your iPhone and computer have a mystical, incestuous relationship where they’ll read your mind and transfer whatever you need back and forth. If you have a PC (and yes, I’m refraining from making jokes here), transferring files can be a bit trickier. Enter Evernote! Evernote is an excellent note-taking app that incorporates voice, picture and text and syncs it all with the desktop app (you can find here). I use it to jot down sermon ideas, create shopping lists, and books I want to buy later. You can do pretty much anything with it. Which is why it’s awesome.
Couch to 5K
This app is designed to take you from couch potato to 5K runner in 10 weeks. Amanda and I are only in week 2 of the program, but the nicest thing I can say about it is this: I hate to run. Hate it more than almost anything (except cats). And yet I can still imagine completing this. The interface is great, well-integrated with the music player and the stepped program is easy to use. Well worth the $3. If I can do it, so can you.
If you haven’t picked up on it yet, I’m not exactly a gym rat. I’ve always hated exercise, and lifting weights is no exception to that. iFitness is a great gym companion. It’s got tons of exercises, well-explained and easy to track and chart.
A big part of a healthy lifestyle is eating well, and if you’ve never counted calories, it can be tough. Lose It! is a simple app that’s easy to use and lets you figure out basically how many calories you’re taking in in a day. And since you can add in a surprisingly wide range of exercises, along with how many calories you’ve burned, it’s fun and easy to keep track of the goals you set for yourself. Again, well worth the small price.
Long story short: this is the best app to find new places to eat. We’ve been frustrated since we’ve moved to Dayton because it’s been difficult to find good, local eateries. No longer. Thanks to Yelp, we’ve found tons of great out-of-the-way places, and with the added social networking features (geo-tagging, reviews, friends, etc.) it’s easy to share the best (and worst) of our finds.
If you like to cook at home, this app is indispensible. Easy to find delicious recipes, rated by ease of preparation. The app prepares a shopping list for you and then guides you on an easy-to-follow, step-by-step cooking adventure. If you have even a modicum of cooking skill, do yourself a favor and discover some delicious meals starting now!
Delicious. Simple. It finds the nearest Chipotle (or you can tell it to go to your favorite) and sends your order. You get a pick-up time and you’re good to go. Show up, skip the line and leave happy. It’s that easy. I’m shocked more companies haven’t jumped on this band-wagon, but kudos to Chipotle for taking full advantage of the beauty of the smart phone!