Millions of people play games on their phone or tablet every day, but even with thousands of apps to choose from, most tend to follow a few basic templates.
Even so, console and PC video game developers continue to break new ground all the time, creating immersive narratives like Firewatch – which players man a watch tower in Wyoming forestland, exploring the natural world and pursuing a path toward self-discovery. An increasing amount of daily human activities are being adapted for simulation via gaming app, so we’ve highlighted five of the more interesting and creative options below:
A product of the Dutch developer Game Oven Studios, the interactive dancing game Bounden takes the concept of simulation to the next logical level.
Rather than have players control avatars on screen, clicking buttons or swiping to control a character’s dance moves, Bounden gives you an opportunity to physically dance alongside a partner. In a game of Bounden, two players share a single phone in their hands, effectively connecting to one another as dance partners.
From there, your phone’s internal gyroscope is used to rotate a sphere on the game screen, and by moving the phone in various positions and patterns, the objective is to align special markers on the sphere with overlaid cross-hairs. That’s the nuts and bolts of Bounden, but the actual gameplay experience compels players to move and sway in sync as they go, dancing as a result.
The Bounden app – available on iOS and Android – includes eight different dance routines; four fun-filled Twister style patterns, and four elegant routines choreographed by the Dutch National Ballet.
Casino Games (PokerStars Casino)
Everyone has played card games like Solitaire on their phone, but simply maneuvering through the deck without an opponent to match wits with doesn’t offer much more than mindless entertainment.
Nowadays though, if you catch somebody playing cards through an app, chances are high they’re competing against another person – often with real money on the line. Classic casino games like blackjack, roulette, and even slot machines are made available through full-fledged casino apps.
Products like the PokerStars Casino mobile app, which is available on iOS and Android, connect players to a central server system that incorporates several popular casino gaming concepts. With play money and real money options available, players can enjoy a bit of practice time to refine certain strategies, or put a few chips down to recreate the thrill of a true casino experience.
Top of the line technology turns a tiny phone screen into a felt-lined table, complete with cards, chips, and other essential accoutrements. Even if you’re a thousand miles from Las Vegas, casino gaming apps give people a convenient way to grab a seat at their favourite table games and slots.
Essentially a puzzle-solver, the iOS-only 868-HACK challenges players with a series of computer programming scenarios displayed in a Matrix-like screen featuring grids, bits, and other symbols. These represent daemons, viruses, and a variety of glitches plaguing the game-screen’s “system,” and your job as the hacker is to identify the correct series of steps to solve each issue and defeat the game’s many enemies.
The appeal of a game like 888-Hack – which emerged from the eclectic mind of famed game designer Michael Bough – lies in its intentionally obtuse and opaque design scheme. Players take turns inputting moves while the AI responds in kind, but without clear directions on how the game’s assortment of symbols and features really works, you’re left to discover through the tried and true process of trial and error.