4: Brick Force
Are you old enough to remember the video for ‘Money For Nothing’ ? Did you ever watch those blocky little guys shifting microwave ovens and thing ‘what this video needs is less Dire Straits and more first-person combat.’? If your answer to either of those questions is ‘yes’, or ‘what the heck are you talking about?’ then Brick Force is for you. It’s a lively little first-person shooter with online multiplayer — but one where you build the maps.
The simple block-stacking interface inevitably limits the type of combat arena you can build, but it’s a whole lot of fun. This list would have been finished much sooner if I hadn’t got sucked into creating the ultimate deathmatch map. The interface is gratifyingly intuitive. An icon labelled ‘M’ gives you access to a menu of possible components. Drop those into your working palette and presto! You’re a game designer! I never did figure out how to switch the music off though.
3: Angry Birds
If you’re a Chrome user who somehow hasn’t already succumbed to the charms of these ballistic avians, you’re in for a treat. The deceptively simple catapult-based gameplay conceals myriad strategic decisions. There’s more than one way to complete most levels, but only one method will yield a three-star score.
Once you start, it’s more or less impossible to resist repeating every level until you have a perfect score. You can only access the first chapter unless you log in with a valid Google account. You’re going to. It’s irresistible.