App Games: A Traveler’s Best Time Killer

One of the most exciting things about going on a trip, whether you’re going out of the country or exploring a new state entirely, is packing things you like to do to occupy your time on a flight, in the waiting area, or in the car. As someone who travels often for vacation, my must-bring items for any trip are a book, my iPod, my journal, and my portable handheld game system. It’s almost guaranteed you’ll make the time go faster if you bring your 3DS or PS Vita, while waiting to get to your final destination. I do think there may be times when you might not feel up to investing too much time on the game you’ve brought and want something much simpler and requires less focus. This is where app games become your solution.

Smart phones, iPads, and other tablets are all equipped with mostly free downloadable app games you can play at your leisure. Each game has short levels you can complete within a few minutes and you don’t have to worry about concentrating on the task at hand. Some levels in certain app games can be a challenge, but not in the same way a video game may make you want to keep at it until you get past the hurdle in front of you. App games are considered casual games because you can start and end wherever you like without feeling as if you need to remember where you last left off.

App games are helpful for those times when I’m not in the mood to continue that RPG I’m in the middle of, but want to still play something. As I prepare to go on vacation next week, I decided to make a list of the various app games I have enjoyed playing for those times when I’m waiting at the airport terminal for my flight to start boarding.

angrybirds_rovio1. Angry Birds. Just about everyone knows what Angry Birds is. This simple app game has you throw birds at these pigs who are encased in a wooden or glass structure you have to break apart to ultimately eliminate the smug pigs. The levels get progressively harder as you unlock a new one, but it takes the right aim and maybe a little bit of luck to get past these levels. There’s also something really satisfying about launching birds at a tall structure and gleefully watching boards and glass break, as the pigs are knocked right off of their “safe” little box or fortress.

cuttherope_omnom2. Cut the Rope. This game has you literally “cutting a rope” to free the dangling peppermint swirl candy to feed a cute little green monster named Om-Nom. It’s similar to Angry Birds in which aim matters and you have to really think about what’s the best way to free the candy, so it swings its way into Om-Nom’s eager and waiting open mouth.

fruitninja_screenshot3. Fruit Ninja. There’s something really fun and addicting about slicing and dicing fruit with a “sword.” As the title implies, various types of fruit fly up on the screen and you have to use your ninja skills and swipe at the fruit as fast as you can to chop it in half on a timer. Slicing fruit at the same time, instead of one at a time, earns you extra points on your score. You get special little power ups where you can either freeze fruit for a short amount of time to chop as many as you can or it slows down the speed of fruit making it onto your screen. Just be careful of the occasional bombs that get thrown into the mix of delectable fruit. Slicing one of those will mean game over for you.

templerun_screen4. Temple Run. This game has a simple premise––run away from these intimidating half human and ape like monsters after stealing a relic. There isn’t any real purpose to the game other than to see how long, fast, and able you are to avoid obstacles in your way. The longer you can keep running, the higher your score will be. There isn’t a real end to this game, but it’s fun if you’re looking for something to keep you entertained for a while.

sushicat_smile5. Sushi Cat. As I’ve mentioned in a past review of the game, it’s an adorable app where you feed a fat cat sushi to bring him closer to his kitty lady love. Each level is really easy to progress onto the next one and there’s something fun about fattening up a cat with sushi. That and I love watching this fat cat bounce around like a squishy ball.

Have any app games you’d recommend on the go? Share your favorites.

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