Perusing Pointless Puzzlers

It’s the weekend so you’ve all probably got some fun filled, action packed adventure planned for the next couple of days, no doubt involving copious amounts of liquor, beaches (if your weather is anything like ours) and optional pirate extras. Of course if your weekend is looking more like the WASDuk teams, in that the highlight might be poking your head out of the window just far enough to shout at the passers by for getting too close to your secret lair, while simultaneously claiming that you breathed enough fresh air that it counts as getting out of the house, you might want to take a look at these mobile games. Just so you’re ready when our personal nukes hit and you can only barter in the resulting apocalyptic wasteland, with points achieved on addictive puzzle games.

We’ve taken a look at the top new puzzle games available in the Play Store and given them a bash so you can download the pick of the addictive mobile games’ catalogue and get so engrossed you’ll be back in work before you know it. Except it’ll be Wednesday. And you won’t have shaved. And you’ll smell like cheap whisky. Yeah welcome to our world too.

pr_sourceThe Branch
Ketchapp

The Idea: You play as a little figure standing on a branch in a side scroller that forces you to continually move forward, while the branch grows extra branches from it. You have to tap the screen to rotate the branch or get squished when the screen catches up with you. Careful you don’t rotate the branch while another branch is growing on the section you intend to stand on, else you’ll be catapulted off screen to your doom. (I suppose – it might be a really low branch).

Is it easy to play?: Exceptionally. Unlike some puzzle games which require a few trial and error runs before you can get to grips with it, The Branch is simple from the get go.
4/5

Is it addictive?: Somewhat. It certainly doesn’t have the masochistic appeal of frustratingly hard mobile games, it is simple enough to encourage play and difficult enough to call you back. The appeal is more in the fun of it. It’s more like weed than heroin… well this went downhill fast.
3/5

How intrusive are the ads?: Horribly, horribly so. Around every third retry you’ll get smacked out of no where with a full screen, still advertising a game which you will inevitably accidentally click on trying to play again. The ads that run during the actual game, however are less intrusive, occupying just a small part at the bottom of the screen. Also, disconnecting from the internet won’t save you from the horrible pop ups.
2/5

Worth a shot?: It’s a decent little game that’s a lot of fun, even if it isn’t the most captivating.
4/5

icon1024x1024-2Jumping Fish
Ketchapp

The Idea: You’re a fish, who spends a surprisingly little amount of time under the water, in favour of jumping out and back under the deep only to jump back out again. You control when the fish jumps out and when you want him to jump back in, avoiding bombs, which have just been left floating in the sea for any small fry to detonate.

Is it easy to play?: The controls are a little clunky, in that it’s a little difficult to judge when to tap the screen to drop the fish back under the water. It doesn’t side scroll and so if you don’t jump out of the water you don’t carry on moving, you just stop.
3/5

Is it addictive?: Nope. Not even a little bit. Maybe it’s because the controls aren’t the most fluid but instead of finding it challenging it’s just annoying. When you hit a bomb you smack into it and wait a few moments for it to explode before retrying, maybe it’s the unceremonious way you just drop into bombs but it doesn’t give the feeling of wanting to drop everything and carry on; it’s just a case of ‘oh there we are there then’ and finding something else to do.
1/5

How intrusive are the ads?: What little ads there are, are small and out of the way and happily ignored.
4/5

Worth a shot?: Nah, don’t bother. It’s not a particularly great game and considering what it is, you will easily find a different and better app to piss about on.
2/5

imagesOrbit Jumper
Artibus Games

The Idea: You are a small dot in orbit of an expanding planet (or exploding star – either way something is growing and it will crush you if you remain in orbit). The only way to escape it is to jump into the orbit of the next planet as you pass, and then the next, and the next and so on until you are crushed on the inside or you miss your jump and get crushed by gravity…or something.

Is it easy to play?: It is an exceedingly simple set up, so much so that you can pick it up instantly without needing to die a couple of times to get the hang of.
4/5

Is it addictive?: Very much so, and quite frantic due to the beautiful soundtrack (a mobile game really has no business having such an immense soundtrack) which gives a compelling sense of urgency.
3/5

How intrusive are the ads?: Given how much I was enjoying the game I was a bit put out when it suddenly cut out in favour of an advert that took up the entire screen. Good oh. This continued, much in the same vein as The Branch, every so often the game would, without warning, cut to adverts. I get that this is how they make their money but it is very distracting.
2/5

Worth a shot?: I’d consider it one of the best puzzle games on this list. It has a surprisingly good soundtrack, with the ability to change the colour of your galaxy which lent it a lovely ambience. It was fun, well paced and catchy. Probably one of the few games I won’t bother to uninstall.
4/5

unnamedRunning Circles
BoomBit Games

The Idea: See Orbit Jumper above? It’s a take on that. It’s exactly the same game, but this time it has a rather minimalistic styling compared to the galactic look of Orbit Jumper.

Is it easy to play?: Again, as with the above it can be picked up instantly.
4/5

Is it addictive?: Not all of the orbits have a time limit requiring you to escape. Instead there are some with obstacles to avoid by switching to the outer orbits, as there are diamonds to collect to assist you if you die. All in all it’s actually great fun, and you have multiple routes to choose from in levels that are continuously randomly generated so you can never rest on your laurels.
4/5

How intrusive are the ads?: Huzzah they’re not. Instead if you die you are offered the chance to watch an ad for free (once per game) and carry the game on from the point where you died.
4/5

Worth a shot?: It may not have the compelling soundtrack of Orbit Jumper but it does add some nifty features that make it well worth a play. You can collect diamonds in it which you can spend to continue the game rather than die. (You can also buy diamonds at some impressive price breaks – if you’re willing to pay. Or get them the usual way by liking them on Facebook). There are additional ‘characters’ to unlock so there is actually a surprising amount in such a small game to keep you coming back.
4/5

triple-jump-iphone-ipadTriple Jump
Ketchapp

The Idea: You are a ball and must jump over spikes and other obstacles lest you explode into ink splots. You have three jumps with which to clear the leap so you have to time it well.

Is it easy to play?: It’s a little difficult to get to grips with the three jump system, it takes a while to get used to it and the game itself? That shit is hard. Like ridiculously, good luck surviving the first jump hard.
3/5

Is it addictive?: To begin with, yes. But once you put it down, it doesn’t draw you back to it. Probably because it is so annoyingly hard.
3/5

How intrusive are the ads?: Like The Branch, they are horribly distracting. They take over the game when you think you are about to replay it and take up the entire screen in the process.
2/5

Worth a shot?: Probably not. It doesn’t strike a very good balance between being fun and challenging, focusing far too much on the challenging to make for a rounded experience. Although a very simple concept it’s a difficult game which allows it to be put down and not picked up again.
2/5

unnamedSpider Square
BoomBit Games

The Idea: You are a square and must negotiate your way across a map by swinging from the ceiling on a rope, but if you touch anything; ceiling, floor, suspended blocks etc you will be smashed into oblivion.

Is it easy to play?: It is very easy to grasp the gameplay. You tap the screen to swing yourself, tapping quickly will cause you to move quickly and tapping slowly will draw you into higher, but longer swings.
4/5

Is it addictive?: Probably the most addictive game on this list. If The Branch is weed, then this is most certainly heroin.
4/5

How intrusive are the ads?: Like other BoomBit Games titles the ads are incorporated into the game itself. You can carry on from where you die if you watch an ad, however if you want to buy diamonds, any purchase you make will remove ads from your game.
4/5

Worth a shot?: The best game on this list in my opinion. It’s good fun, it’s addictive, there’s a lot of things to unlock and it’s easy. There’s an ‘easy’ mode to the game you can pay to unlock but that’s not to say standard mode is impossible. There’s also a multiplayer option which records your game and pits you against another player/friends in a battle. Though, I’m not sure what you get, if anything, if you win.
4/5

 

All of the games featured are currently available in the ‘Top New Games’ of the Google Play Store.

 

 

 

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