Sometimes you’re in the mood for engagement. You need deep and profound contemplation, an in-depth and multi-layered RPG or large-scale strategy game you can sink hundreds of leisure hours into. And other times you just want the gaming equivalent of a sugar rush.
If you’re in the mood for a mobile game you can just pick up and play, this little selection should fit the bill nicely.
Threes! $1.99 iTunes
Definitely one for the daily commute, this match-two puzzle game could very well take the place of your more traditional morning crossword. Begin with a 4x4 grid square of numbered tiles, and then slide them around to match 1s and 2s into 3s, then combine the matching tiles together.
Sounds simple enough in principle. But throw in the fact that each time you move a tile in your chosen direction, all the others slide across too, and what you get is Threes! And yes, there’s a good reason for the exasperative element of the exclamation point in the title.
This fiendish puzzler is addictive and challenging by turns, but you won’t find yourself growing tired with it anytime soon, especially if you're a fan of puzzle games.
Sunbingo free download iTunes
With a choice of many different bingo rooms, scratchcards as well as 50 different slot games available to play, all through one free-to-download phone app, this one should keep you busy for a bit. Games on offer at Sun Bingo include perennial faves such as Clover Rollover and Mystic Meg, alongside a host of colourful newcomers.
And if your phone is as cluttered as mine, and you simply don’t have the space left for any more downloads, then you can access all the games using your phone browser instead. Either way, you get access to a plethora of minigames to choose from, some of which are playable for free, and there’s always a special offer or two doing the rounds.
Ideal for a coffee break spent with one eye on the clock and the other on your lines.
Super Mario Run free download iTunes
There’s always room for a Nintendo classic on a list like this, so here it is. Super Mario Run is a great return to platforming form for the iconic Japanese games company.
From the slick precision of the controls to the vibrant scenery flashing past as you steer Mario on his giddy way through 24 joyous levels of colourful and challenging nature, this is the Mario you always wanted him to be, but now he’s right there on your phone. With hidden coins to find and hidden characters to unlock, the sheer exuberant confidence of game design on display here is a pocket-sized marvel to behold.
The free download gives you the first three levels, which is plenty to play with in itself. A one-off purchase of $9.99 unlocks the full glory of the game. Now watch the hours vanish.
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft free download iTunes
Drawing upon the mythos established in World of Warcraft, this turn-based digital collectable card game is ideal for dipping into if you have twenty minutes to spare. There’s tactics here, plus luck and strategy, as you juggle the draw of the cards with your army of minions, beasts and monsters and the hidden cards of your opponent.
There’s a huge international following for this game, and even a ranking system, so if you get good enough, you could one day even find yourself playing this game in a tournament arena. It’s easy and quick to join a game and there's an option to watch a game being played out. With impressive and consistent support across multiple platforms, the player lobby comes from PC, iPad, and Android land too, so there’s always someone around for a quick game.
The more games you win, the more gold you can bank to spend on new cards to add to your collection. And you’ll want to, because some cards are rarer and more powerful than others.
When the moves and spells start flying, Hearthstone can get pretty intense, but it’s never less than thoroughly enjoyable.
That’s your lot, folks…
Except of course for all the other inventive and excellent games on release for your mobile device. But these ones should keep you busy for the foreseeable future.