Maybe I was a little critical with the last batch of Free Android Games. I found this latest group more enjoyable — but that doesn’t mean that they’re objectively better. Time for a trip…
Around the Dumpster in 80 Minutes: “I hate myself for loving you” edition
100 Floors by Tobi Apps: This game isn’t a full 100 floors — they’re still developing the last few levels — but that’s okay because I got hopelessly stuck around level 28. Each level is a puzzle room where you tap, swipe, shake, and tilt your device to open elevator doors and access the next floor. It’s frustrating when you don’t know whether your’re using the wrong technique or just blocked by fickle touchscreen controls, but I like this one overall.
Bug King by Leadersgames: This was done better when it was Landgrabbers by Big Fish Games, but I put a shamefully large amount of time into Bug King before deleting it. Each stage is a group of bases connected by paths, and you trace routes to capture (or reinforce) bases so you can keep generating troops to overwhelm your computer opponents. It’s real-time strategy for the impatient and easily distracted.
Cheezia: Gears of Fur by Pauhu Games: This gimmick in this platformer is that you’re in a studded hamster wheel that lets you climb walls. The thumbstick controls aren’t completely awful, so I’d call this one pleasantly surprising. The first installment is free, with the option to pay for more levels.
Defender of Diosa by Sigma Game Limited: With its hostile touchscreen controls, difficult game mechanics, and small screen that doesn’t capture all the action, there’s no reason for me to love this game as much as I do. But it’s strangely compelling. Your princess was turned into a chicken, and you have to protect her from goblins by switching your units between jobs with different attack styles — and each job has a unique, chicken-themed outfit. More than anything, I love this game’s artwork. I’m married and have kids, but I would break the laws of God and man to marry this game’s artwork and have its artwork babies.
Monster Galaxy: The Zodiac Islands by Gaia Interactive: I respect this game’s moxie, and its willingness to blatantly copy Pokemon to create a turn-based monster capture-and-combat adventure. Having said that, the story is terrible, the flat dialogue relies too much on self-aware meta jokes, and the attack animations are just the still images of monsters moving back and forth on the screen (mind you, it manages to be better-looking than anything from Phantasy Star III). You run out of “trainer energy” after just a few battles, and have to recharge it either with real money or by going off and doing something else.
Monster Park by Kiwi: Honestly, this is a virtual dollhouse. You arrange rooms and their resident monsters in your building, and then you buy additional decorations. The complete lack of interactivity didn’t stop me from trying to get one of every monster available, and after that there’s not much left to do. Apparently, Kiwi’s way of addressing this achievement plateau was to accidentally ruin everyone’s save files while installing an upgrade.
Paradise Island by Game Insight: I’m kidding about loving this one — this game is the stinkiest pile of poop to ever fall out of a butthole (sorry about the strong language). There’s nothing to love about this tropical-themed game of “place buildings and wait around while they don’t make you money.” See also: Rock the Vegas.
Rule the Kingdom by Game Insight: This is one of the most cunningly disguised “click me so you can wait around” games that I’ve ever seen. The range of activities available is impressive, having you plant crops, build villages, and fight monsters in a game that bridges several genres. I thought I’d be able to enjoy it without spending real money, but then I had to wait while minions repaired three structures that each took half an hour of real-world time, which was immediately followed by a quest to harvest four apple trees, waiting 45 minutes to finish with each one. Luckily, deleting the game takes almost no time at all.
Wind-Up Knight by Robot Invader: This is full of win. It’s the prettiest free game I’ve ever seen, and the jokes manage to be clever. It’s also nice to be in a platformer with a compelling reason to move in one direction — you’re a wind-up knight trying to rescue the princess before you wind down. I could do without the constant encouragement to spend real-world cash in the game’s equipment store, and it’s a shame that you have to pay for later episodes, but this one is still pretty good.
With games like these, it’s almost enough to restore your faith in the existence of free Android games worth playing. Or maybe I’m just suffering from Stockholm syndrome.
Do you know any free Android games that are winners? Make your mark in the comments section, or submit a game for review!Tweet