Thursday, January 5, 2012

Fun is a “Must-Have” Too! Another Definitive List from Your EntreVIEW Team

Last week, my colleague Kermit Nash graced entreVIEW readers with his definitive list of the Top 10 iPad apps for entrepreneurs, with the conspicuous condition that non-productivity apps were NOT ALLOWED. While I’m sure most of our readers have begun the New Year with the resolve to continue working hard in 2012, I couldn’t help but be reminded of the old adage, “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.”  Since the antonyms to “dull” include “intelligent,” “sharp,” and “witty” (and who doesn’t want to be described as sharp and witty?!), I have decided to respond to Kermit’s blog post with my own list of the top 10 FUN iPad/iPhone apps for the new year. While these apps may not directly foster productivity (okay, they may not even indirectly foster productivity), sometimes playing a game on your phone or tablet is a perfect way to de-stress and recharge.
First, though, one major caveat. I am by no means an expert in “gaming.” In fact, it seems to me that many of the games that men in particular find to be stress relievers involve some sort of semi-automatic weapon, which stresses me out more than I think any job could. Thus, in order to provide an intelligent list of games for both genders, I elicited the help of a friend who just so happens to be a mobile game producer. A huge thank you is in order to Jimi Van Guilder from Recharge Studios, who helped me sift through the junk to bring you this list (disclaimer: a couple of the apps listed were developed by his company). Second, in terms of any other criteria, I followed only these rules: 1) Angry Birds, or any other game app so widely known that an additional mention of it on our blog would be overkill, is not included; and 2) I tried to incorporate a variety in the type of games listed (you can only shoot so many things in one sitting…can’t you?). Without further ado, and in no particular order, here are the ten apps yours truly recommends in 2012, to bring you hours of enjoyment, if not productivity:
Tiny Tower: One user described downloading this app as “the best decision ever.” Highly addicting, Tiny Tower is arguably entrepreneur-related; the goal of the game is to manage the resources in your tower, add floors and businesses, and maximize efficiency by placing the tower’s residents in their dream jobs.  FREE.
Drop7: This “critically acclaimed” puzzle game is at once a tough mental exercise and a great time waster. It seems a bit like Tetris at first, but becomes more and more challenging. High score charts are great motivators to keep playing. FREE.
Battle Bears Royale: As alluded to above, and according to my friend Jimi, “sometimes you just need to shoot things.” Battle Bears Royale is the best available online multiplayer game, meaning you can drop into a game and play with up to 8 players around the world in this quirky take on a first person shooter. FREE.

Rolando: This award-winning puzzle game requires using all of your iPad or iPhone’s tilt, tap, and multi-touch controls to maneuver around “Rolandoland.” Its cute characters have been compared to other iconic game figures such as Mario and Luigi or Sonic the Hedgehog, and one critic called the app “the best game you can buy for the iPhone.” $0.99.

Brew Masters: This game gets extra points because it combines two fun things: beer and games. As far as I know your tablet or phone still can’t conjure up real beer (despite the Bud Light commercial), but this is probably the next best thing. Reminiscent of Farmville, players attempting to become “Brew Masters” grow flavors of barley to create special recipes through the beer brewing process. If your brand of beer sells, you can upgrade your units to create more unique flavors. Relax and drink up! FREE.
Plants vs. Zombies: A winner of more than 20 “Game of the Year” awards in its former PC title format, this game hit the iOS market big with its simple interface and great artwork. A cautionary piece of advice from my friend Jimi: “You will probably not put this game down until you beat it or until your significant other takes your iPhone away.” $2.99.
Words with Friends: For a more civilized break, connect this app with your Facebook account to take on your friends in a game of Scrabble-like competition. Words with Friends has been called “social gaming at its finest.” You can start as many games as you want, so you'll always have something to come back to when you need to be distracted. Just make sure you don't set your opponent up for an easy triple word score. FREE.
GL Golf: Let’s not kid ourselveshaving a good golf game can sometimes help you land an important sale. Hence this golf app is arguably productive and fun at the same time. While there are many golf games out there, I’m deferring to my husband on this one (despite the fact that I am pretty sure his GL Golf game is better than his real-life, “I lost $20 this afternoon” golf game). If you need competitive motivation to keep playing, sync the app online to see the best scores across the country. $4.99.
Veggie Samurai: If cooking rather than golf is your hobby (and if you don’t enjoy killing things that could actually be alive in real life), you will thoroughly enjoy this game. Veggie Samurai is similar to another popular game, “Fruit Ninja,” in allowing you to use expert swordsman skills to slice and dice your favorite food pyramid friends. The dice feature will create a whole mess of veggie juice nicely contained inside your tablet or phone. $0.99.
Zen Bound: This game has received acclaim for its uniquely calm and relaxing qualities, as well as its beautiful presentation. Focus and problem-solving, rather than high scores, are the goal, and play has been described as “meditative” and “contemplative.” This is my kind of game! $0.99.
As with Kermit’s post, feel free to mention any great games I might have missed!

A Post by Karen Wenzel, Guest Blogger

1 comment :

  1. I downloaded Drop7 to my iPhone on your recommendation and managed to waste several hours playing the game over the weekend! Warning, don't download it unless you have time to spare...