AS THE SUMMER HOLIDAYS come and go for many, and the return of school/college/whatever looms, it might be a sage time to reflect on some of the best games to help you chill out and make the most of whatever downtime you’ve got left.
Let’s start with one that you might not find immediately appealing, but will become hopelessly addicted to if you try it. Carcassonne (€3.99) is based on the board game of the same name that has won bucketloads of prizes in both its native Germany and beyond.
Named after the French town of the same name known for its heavily fortified medieval enclaves, the game offers you seven followers, or ‘meeples’. Depending on how the town expends (players pick tiles at random which can contain pieces of roads, cities, farms and monasteries) you can deploy your followers as thieves, knights, farmers or monks respectively.
Naturally, the bigger your towns, farms and roads get, the more points you accrue. The problem is making sure you don’t find yourself too short of followers as the game goes on. The description doesn’t do it justice – try the free version you can play online, and if you splash out for the app, you’ll easily get your money’s worth.
- Monopoly Here and Now: World Edition (€3.99) – arguably the world’s favourite board game, Monopoly has kept people amused through incredible poverty amidst the depths of economic depression. And that’s just in Ireland in the last three years. The latest iPhone edition, however, is the hyper-modern Here And Now edition where streets are replaced with cities.
This modern edition captures all the great nuances of the board game, even allowing you to customise the rules to include your own house rules (like the classic ‘double the money if you land on Go’ or ‘all taxes go into a Free Parking fund’). It’ll keep you amused for hours. If not days. If not, in fact, forever.
- Office Heroes (free): Here’s one to keep you amused when you hit the 3pm slump. Think of it as Farmville, but for offices. Climb the ranks of bureaucracy by completing valuable office assignments like updating your CV and playing Solitaire, and use the points you’ve earned to customise your office cubicle into your own little fortress. You can even share your office with others and can help you friends with their tasks.
It’s a format that shouldn’t work – but does. If you’ve ever envied the working lifestyle of David Brent or Michael Scott, you’ll enjoy it.
- Tap Tap Revenge 3 (free): It’s Guitar Hero, but on the iPhone. Enough said? You can tap along to current chart songs and classic tracks, which are regularly updated to allow you bop along to the latest hits. Even the default track that comes supplied, ‘Tap Tap DomiNation’, is catchy as hell. It’s worth paying money for, and they don’t even ask you to.
- Flick Kick Rugby (79c): The soccer season is back up and running so for those more inclined for the oval ball comes this mindbogglingly captivating – and yet stunningly simple – game.
Simply flick your finger across the screen and try to land the ball between the posts for a successful penalty/conversion/what-have-you. There’s sudden death, arcade, time attack and practice modes. Even the wind speed has an impact on how accurate your kicks will be.
Appy Monday is TheJournal.ie’s weekly round-up of the latest and greatest in iPhone apps.
All links in this post open the appropriate app’s page on the iTunes Preview website.