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Matt Fern

Matt Fern

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Wednesday, 22 May 2019 12:37

Weekly Time Waster - ‘F1 Manager’

It’s racing season, and even though many of us might be terrified to ever sit in the driver's seat of a race car, that doesn’t mean there aren’t possibilities to play with race cars in our digital world!

In “F1 Manager,” you get to take on the role of a Formula One team manager. With a roster full of current drivers and teams and featuring all 21 real Formula One racetracks, the developers of this game really want you to feel like a real team manager. You must build your team and roster with different drivers, micromanage how the cars are built, and even manage sponsorships to ensure you have money to keep your team on the track.

The kicker? You play online against other players.

Think you built the best team on the track? You get to prove who is best on the track as your hired drivers will run a race that you essentially watch, and hope they perform well. The more you win, the more sponsorships you get, as well as more skilled drivers who want to be part of your team.

And you’re the one managing how your racers drive on the track. You can have them be aggressive, conservative or you can have them play the long game and try to have a close finish. Choosing how your racer performs also creates tactical challenges, as fuel and tire wear are factors. There are also weather effects in the game that change how cars handle, as well as accidents that can happen on the track.

“F1 Manager” made me feel like I can manage a real racing team – an absolute blast for time-wasting. “F1 Manager” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores.

Wednesday, 15 May 2019 14:37

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Trivia Crack 2’

Trivia Night. Even if you’ve never been to one, you’ve heard of them; a number of establishments in the Bangor area host them on a regular basis. Gather a team together and see how smart you are compared to your competition by answering a series of questions. Well, if you’re like me – too busy to go out for a night of trivia during the week – I have the solution for you.

“Trivia Crack 2” gives you the chance to show your knowledge off to the world, by challenging family, friends or complete strangers to rounds of trivia.

The game is simple: everyone is asked the same question and you are presented with four possible answers. Answer each one; the person with the most right at the end wins the game. If there is a tie, you go into sudden death. As with most games of trivia, there is a category for just about anyone. The categories presented are: History, Science, Geography, Entertainment, Art and Sports.

Some questions are hard, while others are quite easy. A game of trivia could have up to 25 rounds; at the beginning of each round, a new player gets to spin the wheel to pick a category. You choose a character to play as and level up.

With hundreds of thousands of different questions, and over a million active users, you will always have someone to test your smarts against. Give “Trivia Crack 2” a try and have some fun with it. You might even learn some cool new facts!

“Trivia Crack 2” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores.

Every now and again, I like to put up a gaming console game in this space. Many readers might have one in their living room, and hey, when a great free game pops up in the Playstation or Xbox store, why not give it a shot?

This week, we look at “World of Warships: Legends.”

In “WOW: Legends”, you take command of either a WWI or WWII naval vessel and take to the seas in multiplayer combat. In a nine-on-nine battle, you will experience epic naval combat on various maps and game modes while using some of history’s greatest warships. The game features three countries currently: USA, Japan and the United Kingdom, with Germany and Russia on the way.

There are three types of ships to accommodate any playstyle. You have battleships, which are the colossal warships that project copious amounts of power and fear from far away. You have light and heavy cruisers, which is the middle ground; well-rounded ships. Then you have stealthy and agile destroyers that wait for the opportune moment to strike with both cannons and torpedoes. You take command of any of these vessels and perform different objectives to win the game, such as capturing points of interest, or just plain destroying all enemy ships.

With many iconic ships to unlock such as the USS Iowa or the Nagato, there is plenty content to unlock. With absolutely epic sound design, and fantastic visuals of beautiful water and explosive ship to ship combat to boast, “World of Warships: Legends” makes you feel like a true naval commander. It’s a great game to sit on the couch and burn some time with, as matches last between 8-15 minutes.

“World of Warships: Legends” is free to download on the PSN and Xbox Live stores.

Wednesday, 01 May 2019 10:22

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Crazy Kitchen’

I love food. I really do. All the time. Sure enough, when I’m playing games or otherwise wasting time, I’m usually eating food while doing it. These things obviously go hand in hand, so why not play a game that involves food too?

“Crazy Kitchen” is a puzzle adventure game that sees you matching three or more pieces of food and forming large chains to get them off the board. The more food you match in a chain, the more points you earn. Each level gives you the opportunity to earn up to three stars. Pretty much the usual.

In “Crazy Kitchen”, you are the new chef in town. You can either use a premade avatar or you can upload your face onto a chef avatar. Your friends and family are your customers. And yes, you can upload your friends and family’s faces onto the customers as well. To satisfy their hunger, you must fulfill their orders by matching the foods they want on the board.

Sometimes the game throws challenges at you as well, such as having to break food out of ice blocks on the board or having to get strawberries from various places to the other side of the board to dip them into fondue. There are many challenges, keeping the gameplay extremely fresh. The game starts you off with baked goods and throws you through different cuisines such as Mexican fare, Asian and even burgers.

With over 500 levels, many power-ups to utilize and daily challenges, “Crazy Kitchen” has gotten me lost in a delectable world of food and I hope you can share that same experience with me!

“Crazy Kitchen” is available to download for free from the Android and IOS stores!

If you’ve played video games in the past, you might know of a franchise called “The Elder Scrolls.” This game series is set in a fantasy world where medieval and magic/fantasy elements combine to create one of the most lore-driven universes in video gaming. If you haven’t had a chance to play any of the games of the series, there is now a free-to-play version on mobile called “The Elder Scrolls: Blades.”

“TES: Blades” is a first-person RPG that sees you as a soldier who returns to his hometown to find it destroyed. From then on, you set out on an adventure to assist in rebuilding your town. You do this through quests in various places such as dungeons, castles and more. As you rebuild your city, you get to customize it to your liking. To start off, you create your character and pick your playstyle, whether it be the classic sword and shield, an archer, or maybe even a magic-wielding mage.

The game then offers you three ways to play. They are called Abyss, Arena and Town. In Abyss, you must see how far you can get through a never-ending dungeon, slaying enemies and creatures along the way. Arena is a multiplayer mode, where you battle other players to determine who is the greatest champion. Last is the Town game mode. This is where you walk around your town and interact with characters to receive quests, as well as progressing your story. “TES: Blades” is a very pretty game, with colorful and sharp graphics, and it has a wonderful musical score to accompany it.

There is a lot to do and see in “The Elder Scrolls: Blades” – you’ll likely find it to be a great way to waste plenty of time. “TES: Blades” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores.

You know, Star Wars Day – May the Fourth – is less than a month away. So let’s start getting into the spirit of the holiday.

This week, we look at a game called “Star Wars: Commander”.

In “Star Wars: Commander,” you take part in the Galactic War of the original trilogy. The game takes a “Clash of Clans” approach and has you build a base, that you must ultimately defend against other players. Before building your base however, you must choose a side. Do you want to fight for the Rebellion, or do you want a taste of the galactic might of the Empire and it’s relentless stormtroopers? Once you pick a side, and build your initial base, you must train an army and build your defenses.

What’s nice about “Star Wars: Commander” is its story mode that takes place on many different planets. Using iconic characters such as Darth Vader, Han Solo and Princess Leia, you will get missions that you have to complete for your allegiance. These missions can range from assaulting bases, to defending against attacks from AT-ATs and more. You eventually unlock the ability to call in airstrikes from Tie Fighters or X-Wings which are fantastic fun. Completing these story missions nets you rewards and points to level up and expand your army and base.

“Star Wars: Commander” is a fun little game to waste time on and a fantastic “Star Wars” experience if you are looking for one. “SW: Commander” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores.

Wednesday, 03 April 2019 13:12

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Snow Kids’

As the snow melts away and spring takes the state of Maine over, the joy of winter’s end finally fills our hearts. Yet, in my adventures in finding new games on which to waste time, I must unfortunately bring some snow back into our lives.

With an unfortunate callback to winter, I present you our latest time-waster: “Snow Kids.”

Wednesday, 27 March 2019 13:47

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Noa Noa!’

A long time ago (okay, maybe not that long ago for me), everyone walking around the hallways of my elementary (or even middle) school had little digital keychains hanging from their backpacks. You might remember what they were: Tamagotchi pets.

The iconic little digital pets were a huge hit in the late 90s, but began to phase out as they became a distraction in classrooms everywhere. The little digital pets could “no longer exist” if not cared for within half a day! Surprisingly, Tamagotchi pets are still being made and sold today, but who needs to buy one? After all, you can raise one on your phone!

In “Noa Noa!”, you take on the role of an employee at a company called Noa Noa Inc. You must find, raise and hatch little rare digital creatures called Noas. You must feed your Noas to keep them alive, as well as maintaining their stats to keep them healthy and happy. You do this by cleaning them, playing games with them and more.

There are over 15 Noas to find and collect and even more unique ones to discover along the way. You can dress them up, take pictures of them, take them to the gym – whatever you want. There really isn’t much you can’t do with them. It’s really fun, reminiscent of the joy I felt when playing with Tamagotchi pets in my childhood. If you like nostalgia, and like wasting time, “Noa Noa!” is great to satisfy both of those. It will surely remind you of a time gone by.

“Noa Noa!” is free to download on the IOS store. Sorry Android users, but there is no release date at this time.

Wednesday, 13 March 2019 13:14

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Jaws.io’

One of the movies that terrified me the most as a kid was “Jaws”. After watching it, I didn’t want to go swimming in the ocean for a while; it might have taken me about a year or so to conjure up the courage to go into the ocean again. At this point in my life, I’ve watched it numerous times and the fear of going into the ocean is gone.

But now I get the chance to be the danger that keeps people out of the water, thanks to “Jaws.io.”

“Jaws.io” is a multiplayer game that sees one person take on the role of the iconic shark, who is tasked with eating people in the ocean and sinking boats into the bottom of the ocean. The other players? Well, they control the boats. Those who play as boats must patrol the coastline and pick up the swimmers who are stranded. They also have the task of turning Jaws into chum. As you pick up swimmers in your boat, you begin to run out of space and are going to “need a bigger boat.” The more swimmers you pick up, the larger your boat gets. The larger your boat gets, the easier it is to take down Jaws with it.

All in all, “Jaws.io” is a fun little game that brings back the memories of how terrifying Jaws truly was as a movie character. Only this time around, you get to either devour your way to victory as the iconic Jaws or take him out with your bigger boat – the choice is yours.

“Jaws.io” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores!

Wednesday, 06 March 2019 13:14

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Grass Cut’

According to our friend, the groundhog, spring is coming early this year. As I look out the window from my desk and see the snow falling in copious amounts, however, I don’t concur one bit with that outlook. Also - if we are looking forward to spring, then we must be looking forward to cutting our grass each and every week.

So until that time comes, why not get in some practice? We will do so in this week’s Time Waster, “Grass Cut.”

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