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Time Waster Weekly (280)

Three years ago, an augmented reality game called “Pokémon GO” took the world by storm. It allowed people who enjoyed the Pokémon universe to put down their Nintendo systems and walk around their own backyard or town and capture, collect and even battle their favorite Pokémon. The success of this game brought out many other attempts at augmented reality games, such as a Jurassic Park game and even a Walking Dead augmented reality game. Now, there’s a new kid on the block.

It’s no secret there are many Harry Potter fans out there in the world; now, enjoy the wizarding universe even more with your very own augmented reality game – “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite.”

The creators of “Pokémon GO” have taken their game formula and injected it into this wizarding universe, as you will find many things to do just in your own neighborhood. The basic synopsis is that a major event has happened in the wizarding world, causing “Foundables” (which are defined as magical artifacts, creatures, wizards and memories) to suddenly appear in the muggle world. You are part of the SSTF (Statute of Secrecy Task Force) and must work with other wizards around the world (or you know, just some close friends) to solve what is happening and ensure muggles do not discover these magical events.

You do this by exploring a Google maps version of your area and going to points of interest. With many different challenges to complete, wizard battles to win, favorite spells to cast and even a photo mode to share your wizard selfies with your friends, there is a ton to do in “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite.”

“Harry Potter: Wizards Unite” is another great journey in the augmented reality variety of games, so get your wand ready and explore the world around you! “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite” is free to download on the Android and IOS Stores.

Tuesday, 09 July 2019 19:50

Weekly Time Waster – ‘LEGO Tower’

Written by Matt Fern

I love tower building games, and I haven’t hidden that love – you’ve seen a few in this space before. I also love LEGO, as in my childhood they were one of my favorite things to play with, and you can’t argue the plethora of LEGO movies of late have been fantastic. And now my own child gets to enjoy them, as I step on them and writhe in pain in the middle of the night on my way to the bathroom.

Guess what? “LEGO Tower” is apparently a thing now!

“LEGO Tower” is similar to other tower building games, just with a LEGO theme. NimbleBit, the creator of the game “Tiny Tower,” has taken their formula of tower building games and thrust it into the LEGO universe.

In “LEGO Tower”, you are tasked to construct the largest tower in LEGO City, and manage it. You are to build apartments and businesses in which your Minifig residents will live, work and play. Beginning with a one-story tower, you must plan carefully how many apartments and businesses you build, as you need people from your apartments to work in the businesses.

Currency is tight in the beginning, so waiting for your tower to earn money can be a drag if you build it poorly. The businesses you can build are food, recreation, service, retail and creative workplaces. Each of these businesses is themed. Same with the apartments. All of it taking into consideration of what one’s imagination can build with LEGO. Your renters also are unique, as this game takes place in the LEGO world; the body pieces and faces are uniquely randomized, and you get some very interesting characters looking to live in your tower. Pink Space Cowboy Minifigure working in a Yoga Studio? Sure, why not.

“LEGO Tower” will transcend your imagination to new heights, and waste plenty of your time as you get to know your Minifigure residents and employees! “LEGO Tower” is free to download on the Android and IOS Stores.

We’ve seen our fair share of movies in the Marvel Universe recently. And what’s great about that universe is the stories that are derived from it, with endless comic books, toys, TV shows and movies. And don’t forget video games – there are definitely games that allow us to showcase our imagination in the superhero universe.

The latest one I've discovered is “Marvel Contest of Champions” – we’ll call it “MCC.”

Tuesday, 25 June 2019 17:13

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Fun Race 3D’

Written by Matt Fern

A few years back, one of my favorite shows on TV was “Wipeout.” It was always a blast to watch people try to navigate intricate obstacle courses while being hit by objects, flying off of walkways and trying to make their way across the iconic big ball obstacles. So I was ecstatic when I found an obstacle course racing game that embodies most of what “Wipeout” was – and I’m here to share it with you!

In “Fun Race 3D,” you race against other players to get to the finish line first. The catch? You must avoid obstacles along the way. Everything can seem like it’s going perfectly, but one mistake on an obstacle can cost you the entire race. Each race is packed with many obstacles, and many of them seem like they are straight out of “Wipeout.” You have spinning obstacles that you must stop and time properly. You have giant swinging balls that can throw you off the path. You have giant mallets that are hitting the racing path. If you can imagine it, it is most likely an obstacle in this game.

The control mechanics are simple; you touch and hold your screen to move your character and take your finger off the screen to stop them. Timing is everything in this game! As you race through each level, you can collect coins, these coins are able to unlock new characters and skins to use, as well as intimidation/celebration dances to flaunt at your opponents. There are also a few bonus levels to play to earn extra coins.

“Fun Race 3D” is a fun homage to “Wipeout.” Be patient and be quick and you’ll be winning races in no time! “Fun Race 3D” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores.

Tuesday, 18 June 2019 22:08

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Ailment’

Written by Matt Fern

Science-Fiction is my favorite genre, and one of the greatest aspects of that genre, is the pop-culture entertainment media from that genre is limitless. My favorite game derived out of the genre as of late, is a mobile game called “Ailment.”

“Ailment” is a rogue-like shooter with a plot similar to that of the movie “Pandorum.” In “Ailment,” you play as the main character Jonathan, who is a crew member of the space transport Frontier-16. Frontier-16 has 67 robots and 975 other crew members on board. As the transport makes its way to its mission destination, an unexplained event happens. Three days later, your character wakes up, with no recollection of what happened. The only thing you know is that the crew has turned on you for some reason and you end up in a fight for your life onboard the ship. As you progress through the gloomy red-lit corridors and floors of your ship, the answers to what happened start to become clear.

The game has a great story and the pixel-art style gives it a gorgeous aesthetic. There are tons of weapons to use as you progress, such as plasma rifles, rail guns and just about anything else you can think of from a science-fiction movie. Your character Jonathan also has a lot of personality, as he is always talking to you as the player, making small quips and one-liners during the heat of battle. There are also friendly characters you meet along the way.

With fun gameplay, very atmospheric visuals and sounds, and a deep story to uncover, “Ailment” is the time-waster you need on your phone. “Ailment” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores!

Tuesday, 11 June 2019 16:45

Weekly Time Waster - ‘WWE Universe’

Written by Matt Fern

WWE has been around for a long time, and sure enough, it has seen its share of video games depicting what goes on inside the ring. The newest mobile iteration in the world of WWE gaming is “WWE Universe.”

“WWE Universe” lets you take all your favorite wrestlers, new and old, and put them on a roster. You then have them engage in various storylines and matches. With over 240 superstars, the possibilities of your roster are endless. It’s great to see lots of vintage superstars in the game, icons such as Roddy Piper, The Ultimate Warrior, Andre the Giant and more. Once your rosters and storylines are set, you then participate in the actual matches, choosing the superstar you would like to control.

“WWE Universe” makes use of as much real material as it can; each superstar has real moves, finishers and even voices. The music and chants during matches in the stadium are authentic as well, the game truly makes you feel like you are watching a televised WWE match.

During the matches themselves, the fights are fluid and quite simple. The fights are turn-based as you and your opponent take turns doing moves. The game lets you pick from light, medium and heavy attacks. The light attacks always land, but the medium and heavy attacks have a chance of failure. Once you land enough hits on your opponent, you can use your signature move and deal copious amounts of damage to your opponent. The first wrestler to have zero health points at the end of the match loses.

If you’re a fan of the WWE, then “WWE Universe” is definitely the time waster for you. Heck, even if you aren’t, give it a try – it’s a fun game in its own right! “WWE Universe” is free to download from the Android and IOS stores.

Tuesday, 04 June 2019 16:05

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Township’

Written by Matt Fern

One of my favorite types of game is a good city builder. I really don’t know why, but there is something relaxing about starting with a blank plot of land and watching your hard work grow a city before your eyes. There are many free city builder games out there, but my favorite has to be “Township.”

In “Township,” you are the mayor of a town and are tasked with building it up as much as you can – you even get to name it. You can also visit other players’ towns and trade with them! The kicker, however, is that your town is agriculture-based, so you make most of your money through harvesting and selling crops, dairy and more. As your town grows, you will start to build factories and production centers to refine your crops and other materials into different products; this opens up trade with other countries! You can build restaurants, cinemas, schools, zoos and more. Your citizens also interact with you, as they will ask for help, or even need response from the police or fire department if something tragic happens.

“Township” isn’t just about building a city and making money, though – it’s watching your citizens grow and being part of their little digital community. There are some surprises in “Township” as well, such as building a mine and finding Indiana Jones-style artifacts in the cliffs. With endless possibilities and layouts in how to build your city, and many challenges to keep you busy, “Township” offers a fun free experience that is sure to help you waste some time.

“Township” is free to download from the Android and IOS stores.

Wednesday, 29 May 2019 11:58

Weekly Time Waster - ‘Bottle Flip: 3D’

Written by Matt Fern

Bottle flipping – a phenomenon that took the internet by storm.

We’ve all seen the YouTube videos. People take bottles filled with some water, toss them into the air in a spinning fashion and try to have them land perfectly on different objects. It’s kind of like rubbing your head while patting your stomach – it doesn’t take much to do it, but it certainly wastes precious time. Sure, you could try this at home with a real bottle, but when you’re out and about during the day, you can waste some time flipping bottles on your phone.

Yes, really.

“Bottle Flip 3D” is exactly like its real-life counterpart. You have to flip a plastic bottle and have it land perfectly on different objects such as shelves, tables, chairs, sofas … you get the idea. To do this, you simply tap the screen at the right moment. That’s it.

You can control the strength and distance of the jump for your bottle; calculating this is really the hardest part. Too strong and the bottle might land on its side. Too weak and the bottle might not even make it to its desired destination. As you progress through the levels, they increase in difficulty and even present some interesting places onto which you might flip your bottle. As you play, you also collect coins; as you collect these coins, you get cool new bottles to flip.

Bottle flipping is a great challenge – the sort of challenge that you might just fall in love with. “Bottle Flip 3D” is free to download on the Android and IOS stores. Make sure you download the version made by Tastypill.

Wednesday, 22 May 2019 12:37

Weekly Time Waster - ‘F1 Manager’

Written by Matt Fern

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’

Written by Matt Fern

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.

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