Best free arcade game for Android: PinOut!
Pinball on smartphones always feels cramped, like someone tried to squeeze a house into a shoebox. PinOut! is different. Its single, massive table stretches far into the distance, challenging you with belting a ball along against the clock.
The table’s divided into short sections, which you get past by successfully hitting ramps. If the ball drops between the flippers, you don’t lose lives, but time.
The entire game’s drenched in neon and synth-pop, like you’ve been hurled into a fusion of Tron, pinball and a 1980s disco. It works brilliantly even on the smallest screen, ramping up the tension as the clock ticks down and your sausage fingers prevent you from reaching the bonuses that temporarily reset the timer.
The original Badland chronicled something of a bad day for a bat-like creature hurled through nightmarish hazard-filled tests. In this sequel, things haven’t got any better for our winged chum, bar his newfound ability to move in both directions.
Yep – whereas Badland was ‘tap to flap’, Badland 2 demands two thumbs, with you directing the doomed critter left or right. That might not sound like much of a change, but it makes for a radically different play experience as the poor protagonist is hurled about dizzying multidirectional roller-coasters before being impaled, fried, or sawn in half.
This bat needs a better agent.
If someone bounded up to you and enthused about an officially licensed Frisbee® game, you’d probably consider them some kind of lunatic, but Frisbee Forever somehow manages to be really good.
It’s essentially a series of on-rails rollercoasters, and you nudge your plastic disc left or right, to collect stars along the way. The scenery is all cartoonish pirate ships and snowy landscapes, more bringing to mind Nintendo than a freebie Android game; and although IAP lurks, it’s not really necessary, since every attempt at a level (including those that end in failure) rewards you with XP for unlocking new worlds.
Silly Sausage: Doggy Dessert
Doggy Dessert features a stretchy canine attempting to inch his way through a surprisingly deadly landscape of sugary treats. Instead of walking, he expands until reaching another platform. Clinging on, his backside then snaps back into place. A Marvel superhero movie’s surely due any day now.
Until then, you’ll have to figure out the best way to work past spikes and saw blades, grabbing gems along the way that can be used to buy access to kennels that act as restart points. Not got a sweet tooth? Predecessor Silly Sausage in Meatland is equally tasty.
Multi-device party games are usually a bit glib, but Spaceteam bucks the trend with a quirky and oddball take on co-op gameplay. Between two and four players are part of the Spaceteam (red jerseys optional), and must give orders, to try and stop your ship exploding, a ship – naturally – that happens to be attempting to outrun an exploding star.
It's a very silly game, and you can't help but love anything on Google Play that has 'Beveled Nanobuzzers' as an item in its feature list.