Free mobile games to check out in 2017

By Karen Ho

The The new year is here and so are new mobile games. Whether they are to kill time while waiting for the next class or simply to unwind after a long day, here are five free mobile games that have looked promising in 2016 and are worth a download in 2017.

Super Cat Bros / Super Cat Tales

For those familiar with “Super Mario Bros. 3,” this game might be a pleasant delight.

Developed by Neutronized and published by FDG Entertainment, this mobile platformer boasts features reminiscent of the classic platformer “Super Mario Bros. 3” with the same dying animation and 8-bit graphics. But instead of playing as an Italian plumber, players play as cute cats.

Players collect coins and cat bells while they navigate their cats through stages with different obstacles. There are six worlds in total, each having its own themed environment, from a desert to a snowy landscape.

With controls that are straightforward and simple to understand, players unlock new cats after completing each world.

“If you like cats, platformers, cat platformers, or platform cats, you should check this one out,” wrote Shaun Musgrave, a reviewer for the site TouchArcade.

The app is called “Super Cat Bros” in the Google Play Store and “Super Cat Tales” in the App Store. It is rated E for Everyone and 4+.

Order’s Up

“Order’s Up” is a fast-paced mobile game, developed by Studio Generative and published by Appsolute Games, where players serve up food for some pixelated, nitpicky customers.

Players must satisfy customers’ orders as they walk in and before they reach the counter at the bottom of the screen.

Their orders, combinations of burgers, fries or a drink, are shown in a thought bubble above their heads, and players must tap the correct food items at the bottom of the screen in the order that it is displayed in the bubble.

If players tap the wrong item, it’s game over.

The game especially tests players’ focus and resilience when the restaurant hits “rush hour,” when customers walk in at higher speeds and when a customer with a ridiculously huge order comes marching.

Gameplay is seamless, so it doesn’t stop until players fail.

“Order’s Up” is available for iPhone at the App Store and is rated 4+.

Don’t Grind

The main objective in Laser Dog’s game “Don’t Grind” is to prevent a player’s character, or “grindable,” from being grinded into a pulp by falling into the buzzsaws at the bottom of the screen.

To prevent this horrible death, players tap anywhere on the screen to keep grindables bouncing upward and away from the buzzsaws. They also swipe left or right to avoid additional buzzsaws or lasers that could appear from any direction.

Players also want to collect stars that appear on the screen, but they have to be careful”these stars usually lie right in the path of imminent danger.

TouchArcade reviewer Jared Nelson writes, “While ‘Don’t Grind’ might not seem like much in the first few minutes with it, invest a little time and it’ll slowly reveal its brilliance to you the more you play.”

Disturbingly entertaining, “Don’t Grind” is available for Android and iPhone devices and is rated T for Teen and 9+ for infrequent or mild cartoon or fantasy violence.

Archery King

For those who couldn’t get into an archery class this quarter, “Archery King” could be a virtual alternative without the muscle soreness.

Developed by Bluehole PNIX and published by Miniclip.com, “Archery King” provokes a virtual archery competition with oneself or among online players.

Gameplay is simple. Players tap and hold the screen to enter a viewfinder of the bow and carefully aim to hit the bullseye. They also have to consider wind direction that could alter their arrow’s path.

Different modes are available for players to choose.

Players can enter Challenge or Time Race single-player modes and Classic or Rush multiplayer modes. All modes require players to pay entry fees using virtual coins that they earn from winning battles.

In single player modes, players go through a series of stages that have objectives that they must fulfill to pass.

In multiplayer modes, players battle other online players all over the world, who are chosen randomly, for the higher score in either a turn-based fashion in Classic or a free-for-all fashion in Rush.

Players who find satisfaction with achieving an objective or enjoy a friendly competition with others will likely enjoy this game. And meeting someone from Portugal or Canada is also a plus.

“Archery King” is available for Android and iPhone devices and is rated E for Everyone and 4+.

Icarus: A Star’s Journey

Developed by PlaySide Studios, “Icarus: A Star’s Journey” is a minimalistic, tap-and-drag game that combines simplicity with a need for accuracy.

Players tap anywhere on the screen and drag to aim a glowing ball towards golden orbs, maneuvering around obstacles that block their path and avoiding the sides of the screen, which would end in an explosive death.

While doing so, players must also be wary of their health meters that run out over time; they must enter stars to replenish their health meters before they run out.

The more orbs collected, the more players level up, which extends their health meters.

“With its mystical look and smooth gameplay feel, I highly recommend the lovers of good graphics and smooth gameplay to try this game at least for once,” wrote Farah Noor, who reviewed the game for Game Over Studio.

“Icarus: A Star’s Journey” is available for iPhone at the App Store and is rated 4+.

Super Cat Bros

Courtesy of FDG Entertainment

Super Cat Bros

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