kottke.org posts about addictive Flash games
Idleplex starts you off playing sheep pong and when you earn enough money from that, you can buy other mini-games which you can level up enough to play themselves, and then you become a manager of sorts of the games. The game's creator, John Cooney, attempts to explain:
I approached this game wanting to return to simple game mechanics. In fact, I considered how simple game mechanics could go, with simple shapes and single-button mechanics controlling everything. After defining these simple mechanics, I wanted to let the games play themselves, and let the players focus on cultivating a mosaic of these moving pieces.
I love these types of games. (via waxy)
Occasionally I'll go to my page of addictive Flash games to revisit some old favorites. I mostly play games on my phone now, but some of these are still pretty good. One of my absolute faves is a game called Cyclomaniacs, which I've played all the way through several times over the years. Last night I discovered there's a Cyclomaniacs 2. So good.
Update: There is also Cyclomaniacs Epic and a one-off called Gregmaniacs. (via @ISeeFrants)
With Typing Karaoke, instead of singing the songs, you type along to the lyrics and get points for lack of errors and how well you keep up. Too fun!
Don't know why exactly, but I am loving the hell out of Happy Wheels. The game is pretty simple -- it's a cross between CycloManiacs, Line Rider, and Jackass -- you ride on a bike or Segway or mobility scooter through a course avoiding obstacles and trying to reach the end. Which is fun enough except that when you hit something hard, you body flies apart and blood sprays all over the place. Hilariously. Like this Skate 3 video, which is also inexplicably gut-busting. (via mlkshk)
Been a few months since we've had one of these. Constellations is a simple game where you shoot jellyfish at stars and shoo fish out of the way. What, I was just playing that for 30 minutes? Oof.
Axon Mar 23 2012
Oh, have plans this weekend? Cancel them. There are neurons to build and Axon will help you build them. I think zombies might like this game, too, because it's all about brainzzz.
(via Noah Gray)
Wonderputt is a wonderfully inventive mini golf game. You might even call it whimsical. (via waxy)
Ok, if you don't want to be playing this game for the next 20 hours straight, click away now. Kingdom Rush is my latest tower defense addiction and it may be the best one yet. That the music sounds a lot like the Game of Thones theme isn't hurting it either.
That's how Clockwords bills itself...you try words containing the available letters to shoot badguys coming your way. More fun than it sounds, especially for Boggle/Scrabble nerds.
Forgive me Internet for I have sinned. It has been several months since I regularly posted addictive Flash games to kottke.org. As penance, I offer up Love, in which you get your spinning square close to (but not too close to) a bunch of squares. More funner than it sounds. Go in peace.
Z-Type is a fun typing game...falling enemies each have a word associated with them and you type it to blow them up. More fun than it sounds. (via @nathanperetic)
A little Friday fun: Clock Blocks. It took me a bit to figure out how to play, but basically you clear a grid of clocks by shooting from clock to clock at the angle of each clock's rapidly spinning second hand. Ok, maybe not so basically, but you'll get the gist after playing for a few seconds. There is also an iPhone version.
Uh oh, this one is going to be a big timesink. Timetub? Timelake? Anyway, try out Solipskier and feel the rest of your day slipping away. My top so far: 18.7 million...I got a lot better once I tried it on the iPad. (via waxy)
Entanglement is a fun little Flash game that reminds me a lot of those old Pipe * games. (thx, kathryn)
Gluey Jul 20 2010
Gluey is a short game (~15 minutes) that's like a liquidy version of Bejeweled.
Got sucked into this game for more than a few minutes: Ragdoll Cannon 3. (via buzzfeed)
This tower defense game is really really addictive. Like don't start if you want to get something done today. (via buzzfeed)
Oh, man. Now you can play the original Super Mario Bros game as Link from Zelda, Mega Man, Samus Aran, and others. Really really fun. The only thing that could make this better is if you could play as NHL94's Jeremy Roenick or Tecmo Bowl's Bo Jackson. (thx, will)
A fun dogfighting game; here's the premise:
1835: Sir Albert Pembleton accidentially discovers low temperature fusion. His invention changes history. A nuclear hotbox is installed in an early aeroplane. Super heated steam, the technology of the age, drives all the systems.
Oh, I can see where this game would get maddeningly addictive after awhile, especially if you like to shoot pool. (thx, marc)
A strategy shooter game that gets pretty hard in the later levels...like level 19, my nemesis.
You've gotta have a scroll wheel (or trackpad) to play Record Tripping, a game in which you utilize DJ scratching to solve little puzzles.
Build your network, set up your blasters & mortars, get some energy stores in place, and try not to play Creeper World for like 12 straight hours. And this is just a demo for a downloadable for-pay game with more than 50 missions. (via buzzfeed)
Pictogrid starts off deceptively simple but is difficult to stop playing after a few rounds. (via buzzfeed)
I didn't think much of this one at first (yet another tower defense game, right?) but the megatower wrinkle helps make Bubble Tanks Tower Defense almost unputdownable.
Oh, and there's a level with unlimited money to spend on towers and upgrades to defend against unlimited enemies (it's the last board in the top row). I built up the board as much as I could and let it run overnight. After 10 hours or so, the game got to level 2758 before all 20 lives were gone.
Completely trippy version of Tetris where pushing the rotate button ROTATES THE WHOLE WORLD. (thx, ryan)
If you liked Hedgehog Launch, you'll also like Fly Hard.
New Super Mario Bros Wii may be difficult, but the simple Hoshi Saga had me tearing my hair out way more than Bowser's minions.
And call your hairdresser because there is also Hoshi Saga 2, Hoshi Saga 3, and Hoshi Saga Ringo. (via buzzfeed)
Endless Migration is a fun Flash game where you control a flock of geese while dogding airplanes and weather systems. (thx, neil)
A simple but oddly compelling multiplayer basketball game...after each shot, you're shown how you're doing against everyone else (~1000 players when I was playing). (via waxy)
Let's get your Monday started off on the wrong foot: Warzone Tower Defense. A worthy alternative to Desktop Tower Defense. (thx, shay)
GFB is a game and it's totally safe for work unless you want to actually get something done today. From a review at Jay is Games:
There is a certain paradigm shift that must occur when playing this game for the first time before the light goes on and the player 'gets it'. I believe this is due to a sort of cognitive bias we have as gamers: when firing a turret we expect things to explode... and to go fast.
However, this game is anything but fast. The gameplay forces the player to slow down, think first, and to plan each shot carefully. Each game therefore becomes a careful placement of orbs rather than a quick-fire session to arrive at the end result. The slower pace gives way to excitement as an orb inches ever so close to that fearsome dotted line, and strategy emerges as the key ingredient to an award winning recipe. Those who don't experience the paradigm shift may never appreciate the subtlety and the genius of this very simple gameplay design.
There's also a version for the iPhone called Orbital.
Update: Here's a Java version with rotation.
Continuity is an ingenious little Flash game that is one part side-scroller and one part magic square puzzle. (thx, carl)
I don't have time for a proper play, but the sequel to Hedgehog Launch is out. It's more of the same, only different. (thx, ben)
PS. In case you missed it on Friday, all the fun Flash games I post have their own page now: addictive Flash games. There it is, your whole day. Waiting to be ruined.
Shields of Gemland is a fun Snood-like game. (via buzzfeed)
BTW, I've collected a bunch of the fun Flash games I post occasionally into a tag of their own: addictive Flash games. Hundreds of hours of fun, all on one page.
The goal of the UPGRADE COMPLETE! game is to upgrade the game fully. (Yes, this game was inspired by Achievement Unlocked.)
This game has crummy graphics... UNTIL YOU UPGRADE THE GRAPHICS ENGINE! And no sound? UNTIL YOU BUY IT IN THE SHOP! And no mute button!? You guessed it, this game requires you to buy that as well!
Which seems a bit lame but then when you get into it a bit, it's a little less lame but the game is totally easy and it just takes some time to get through it and get everything. I guess what I'm trying to say is: I finished it.
CycloManiacs is Excitebike all grown up...it can drink alcohol and tie cherry stems in knots with its tongue. Warning: this is literally hours of fun. Hours.
Boggle + Tetris/Snood = Must Pop Words. This is difficult for poor typists like me. (via vsl)
Max Damage. You didn't want the rest of your afternoon, right?
The Circle the Cat game is addictive until you figure out the optimal strategy (which took me way too long) and then it's pretty easy. (via @dunstan)
In Multitask, you start off playing one game and then another and so on until you're playing several games at the same time. I am horrible at this. (via waxy)
Pixel Aug 04 2009
I could have played Pixel all day but my mouse hand fell off.
Usually free Flash games take about 30-45 minutes to get through but BridgeCraft has a whopping 140 levels (70 each on easy and normal settings)! You could build actual bridges in the time it would take to finish this game.
Catch musical notes as they fly by to the rhythm of a classical soundtrack. I enjoyed this game way more than I thought I would...it's likely my love of games where you tidy up. (thx, dylan)
Aaaaaaand if you liked Hedgehog Launch and Learn to Fly, you'll also probably enjoy Micro Olympics and Micro Olympics on Mars.
If small addictive Flash games were advertised through Hollywoodesque trailers: if you loved Hedgehog Launch, you'll go penguins for Learn to Fly.
A pox on thee and thine house, Andy Baio, for introducing me to Crush the Castle, which prevented me from crushing on some PHP I should have been doing tonight. BTW, if you get stuck on the last few levels, check out this video. Not that I did for the last level. Not at all. Nope. (via waxy)
Keep hail afloat with your mouse's wind to grow it large enough that it can crush houses, skyscrapers, and buildings. Effing Hail! Addiction level: my eyes are bleeding.
BallDroppings might be the next Line Rider. Or maybe it was the original Line Rider. If you don't know what that means, congratulations and go play this fun thing with musical balls and lines. You can also get it for Windows or the Mac. Has anyone made actual music with this sucker? If you take a crack at it, send me a link to a video of the results. (via this is that)
Who knew that radically expanding the size of the game board in Tetris makes the game almost completely unplayable, unless the object is to die in the least amount of time possible. Reports, which I have sadly corroborated with my own play, say that it take 15 minutes to complete one line. OCD, anyone? (via waxy)
From the folks who brought you Desktop Tower Defense comes The Space Game. The gameplay looks daunting (a huge mistake for online embeddable games like this) but skip the training crap and click on the missions tab to get right into it. Playing The Space Game, I'm fondly reminded of Dune II...loved that game. (via buzzfeed)
Yet another addictive puzzle + physics Flash game: Totem Destroyer 2.
Perfect Balance is one of those "I'll just play it for a bit" games and then you're all like, wait, it's 2:30am? (via waxy)
Two Rooms is a simple Flash game, part puzzle and part fast-twitch, in which you move items around in two adjacent rooms in order to get one of your movers to a goal. (via buzzfeed)
Your next 45 minutes are spoken for: Auditorium. I wish this game went on forever but it's only a demo for an eventual larger game.
If I am to maintain my current levels of productivity and balance in my life, I do not need a tower defense game on my iPhone. But if I *were* to bring such a thing into my life, Fieldrunners looks like a good candidate. I can't wait until playing video games falls under the rubric of parenting. (Just kidding, Meg.)
Also, after a long period with no activity, Desktop Tower Defense is set to be updated soon (hopefully):
Version 1.9 announced! I am working on an updated version DTD which will include multiplayer, extra modes and extra creeps. It will be released in the next few weeks so stay tuned!
But they have a lot of other games under development so I'm not holding my breath.
Update: DTD 1.9 is available here. (thx, christopher & jason)
Fun Flash game: Nano War. It's pretty easy to brute force your way through level 10 but after that there's some strategy required that I didn't have the patience to work out. (via buzzfeed)
Don't Shoot the Puppy is a simple but difficult Flash game, the perfect Friday time waster. I drained my reserves of patience in doing so, but I finally finished level 15.
Wednesday noontime timewasting game: Splitter. Reminiscent of Crayon Physics and Fantastic Contraption, but you should be able to finish it by the time your lunch break is over.
Fans of Desktop Tower Defense, if you're tired of the same old boards and enemies, check out Whiteboard Tower Defense. Can you feel that? The afternoon slipping away? (via buzzfeed)
I know it's only Wednesday, but I'm going to lay ruin to your productivity for the rest of the week with this little number: Chronotron. It's a Flash game where you and your past selves work together to complete puzzles. Just like in The Five Doctors. (Sort of.)
Warning, addictive Flash game: Fantastic Contraption. You build a little machine to push, pull, drag, or fling a special wheel into the goal. The best part is that when you complete a level, you can see how other players completed it (and how unimaginative you are). Really, really fascinating. For a level requiring some stair climbing, one fellow built a Theo Jansen-like beast that walked right up those stairs. For another level, another person built a catapult. (via buzzfeed)
Race Usain Bolt in this button mashing Flash game. I was a fair Track & Fielder back in the day so I beat Bolt on my first attempt. [Insert elaborate archery pose emoticon here.] (thx, scott)
Addictive Flash game of the week: Hedgehog Launch. There's something really clever about the game play here but can't quite put my finger on what it is. The objective of the game -- to launch the 'hog into space -- is so beside the point the first time around that you forget all about it until it actually happens. My best time was 7 days. (via cyn-c)
Update: Woo, 5 days! My technique: upgrade to a parachute as quick as you can, use it to float for valuable multiplier, then get rockets and band/launcher.
Update: Got it down to 4 days. 3 days is possible but I'm retiring.