Desperate for a gaming fix but spent all your hard earned cash on pints, pies and particularly peculiar Peruvian pornography for Si’s birthday presents? (Editor’s note – It’s tomorrow). Worry not, I’ve got the gratis goods for you right here.
First of all we’ve got 94 Seconds. As the name suggests, this is a timed game in which you have 94 seconds to suggest answers to a series of questions, such as naming a unit of measurement beginning with the letter K, capital cities beginning with the letter O.
Simple, common answers award you one point, a more difficult answer would earn you 2 points and an incorrect one obviously lands you nothing. Handily, an incorrectly spelt answer will still net you your points, which is handy because you’re often rushing to input text.
The questions are very simple but it’s an alarmingly regular occurrence to have a complete mental block when trying to think of an answer, leading you to skip a question and forfeit 3 seconds. I quite often find myself looking at the suggested answers after the game has finished and thinking “Obviously!”
A simple concept, but this is a great little game and you can find yourself sinking a fair bit of time into it as you try to beat the top scores of yourself and your friends. 94 Seconds is currently available and free on Android phones and tablets, iPhone and iPad.
Next up we have The Wild Kingdoms, a mish-mash of a card game and a chess in which you pick an army of creatures, from dragons to crocodiles, to do battle against your opponent. After picking the collection of cards you want, you position them as you wish across a board and the object of the game is to capture the opposition king, much as you would do in chess.
The game contains no single player AI, so your options are limited to a 2 player ‘skirmish’ on the same device or playing online. The only method to play online is to compete against Facebook friends who also have the game.
The unique artwork is very impressive and each card is a well designed representation of the creature or special power. The African-inspired roots shine through and it’s obvious that a lot of time and attention went into this department.
The Wild Kingdoms is certainly worth a look if you’re a fan of card games and has recently had a free ‘lite’ version released on Android and iOS.
We’ve also got the Facebook game, Go Fishing. It’s not chasing after the hyper-realistic ‘simulator’ style of fishing game, this is a cartoony representation of the past time, although the locales are real life photos of places like Lake Michigan.
Go Fishing does a good job of walking you through the initial stages, giving you tasks in order to familiarise yourself with the menus and controls. Although it’s not overly complex there is a fair bit to get to grips with and thankfully this is all clearly explained. You can also upgrade your equipment and buy a wide array of extras, from new bait to boats.
All in all it’s a nicely relaxing game, and this interested in the sport may take extra enjoyment from it. One word of warning, it could end up a little heavy on micro-transactions so just keep an eye on any add-ons you may be tempted to purchase.
In the classic corner we’ve got the phenomenally addictive New Star Soccer. Despite having been around for some time NSS is still much loved and well played, and probably not a month goes by when someone doesn’t ask me “Hey, have you heard of this?”
In NSS you’ll create a fresh, young, 16 year old footballer desperate to make it big. After a quick tutorial to get you to grips with the control method you’re offered a contract at a lower league team (think less West Ham, think more Weston-super-Mare) and thrust into your first professional game.
Control is easy to get to grips with but becomes more challenging as the game progresses when elements such as wind and rain come into play.
New Star Soccer is a deceptively deep game too. You don’t just compete in matches, you also have to train to level up your stats, but this takes a sizable chunk of your energy meter. Dropping too low will have the negative effect of being unable to play in the next match, angering your manager along the process. You can boost your energy back up using the boosting drinks and these are purchased with the in game currency which in a refreshing change is earned during the matches and doesn’t involve micro-transactions in any way.
In other depth adding elements there’s also boots you can purchase to improve your stats, plus you can delve into the more materialistic aspects of a footballs life by splashing the cash on homes, cars and clothes, or even try your luck down at the casino. Still worthy of your attention in the toilet gaming stakes.