10 Best Time-Killing Apps That Are Absolutely Free
Things you can do with your phone that don't involve Facebook! Imagine that!
(SPOT.ph) If life is like a box of chocolates, then it also applies that sometimes, the box of chocolates can wait on the shelf for a long, long time before it gets picked up. The end of this metaphor is that things get eaten, which may or may not be a good thing but, let’s focus on the waiting part because we do a lot of that.
Rather than complain about how much time we waste sitting in buses, standing in queues, wasting away at the airport because of a delayed flight, we feel like being more positive and being grateful for smartphones and tablets (and the marriage of both in the form of the phablet). Sure, in some ironic way, it makes us disconnected from other people, but it’s not always a bright idea to chat up the person sitting next to you in the bus. Stranger danger and all.
If you can’t browse through your social media feed because of faulty 3G connection (or if you don’t have internet on your phone), here are a few apps that can help you pass the time while in transit or any other time you find yourself idle. We’re sure you have 4 Pics 1 Word, all the variants of Temple Run, Candy Crush, Unblock Me, and heck, even Angry Birds on your phone. The apps on the list are not too addicting, so you can put them down once you need to do something more important. We don’t want these things to consume your life. The offline world is waiting for you.
Note: This list is not 10 Best Game Apps. All of them are free and available at the App Store and Google Play.
1. Dots by Playdots, Inc.
How to play: The basics are you connect dots with similar colors in straight lines or squares (no diagonals, sorry) and you get points for doing that. You can play on the clock (connect as many dots as you can within a certain time) or play by other constraints (connect as many dots as possible with limited "moves"). Play to infinity is an option you can purchase.
It’s on this list because: It’s mindless. We don’t need that you don’t have to have a brain to play because face it, most of us are born with brains. What we mean is it doesn’t take a genius to play it and there’s no pressure to be excellent at it. The constraints (either the time or number of moves) make it easy to put down when you’re about to do something important.
2. Flow Free by Big Duck Games LLC (Free)
How to play: There are colored dots on a grid and you have to connect them without any of the colors overlapping. Dots increase with each level. They even have a jumbo pack for tablets / phablets.
It’s on this list because: It’s relaxing. Maybe it’s the dragging motion your fingers make over the glass-similar to raking a small zen garden. It provides a small challenge, but nothing too frustrating, and it doesn’t cause a lot of stress when you’re stuck on a level (unlike, say, Candy Crush).
3. Dumb Ways to Die by Metro Trains (Free)
How to play: Just a bunch of casually drawn characters that you need to save from impending doom that range from being stung by wasps, eaten by sharks, or getting hit by a train.
It’s on this list because: The song that goes with this game is damn catchy. It’s a bit morbid, yes, but when you’re not feeling all too well about the traffic-this might just be perfect. You can choose to keep saving the little characters or just watch them die through their own, in a manner of speaking, lack of knowledge.
4. Paper Toss and Paper Toss 2 by Backflip Studios, Inc. (Free)
How to play: There’s a garbage bin...and you toss paper, in the hopes that it goes in. Or not. Be a litter bug in the virtual world, it’s okay.
It’s on this list because: In Paper Toss 2, you can throw paper at your boss. Sometimes, we’d rather not have the paper go in the bin and just have it hit the boss in the face. On your way home from a crummy day at the office, this will relieve some stress and kill time efficiently. No harm done because you can put it out of your mind when you don’t have extra minutes in your hands.
5. Google eBooks / Kindle / NeoSoarBooks
How to play: You read letters in sequences that make sense and you flip imaginary pages. This isn’t a game. It’s a way to read books. Books are things with stuff printed on them that make you smarter.
It’s on this list because: Reading is nice, especially when people don’t try to enforce it on you with an air of condescension. We don’t feel good when people raise their eyebrows after they learn that we read something less than Umberto Eco (he’s nice, but we can’t take an aspirin after every chapter from the headache he gives us-it’s bad for the liver). We don’t like it when we hear people scoff when we say we don’t have time (and energy) to read anymore, and while we know actual books are more awesome than anything else: we can’t always afford them (sad). So keep reading apps in your handheld devices and put exactly one book on that digital shelf. Chip away at the book when you have an idle moment. Don’t feel guilty if you accidentally enjoy reading Twilight for whatever reason or the Catching Fire movie comes out before you finish the book. Just keep reading. Yay!
6. Hardest Game Ever 2 by Orangenose Studio (Free)
How to play: There are about 24 different stages and all of them are semi-frustrating, but mercifully, all of them have time constraints-diluting the addictive quality.
It’s on this list because: The Hardest Game Ever isn’t a title that you should take lightly. The great thing about this is the mini games have a time limit, so you don’t get lost in them. There’s mild frustration that comes with not getting to the next level but it’s not going to suck up half your life. It’s just a nice game that will help you forget that you’ve been stuck in traffic for five hours...and counting.
7. BubbleFREE / Bubble Wrap (Free)
How to play it: You. Pop. Bubble. Wrap. [Insert sound of wild cheering here.]
It’s on this list because: There’s an argument against this and it’s that nothing beats the sound and feel of actual bubble wrap being popped. Our counter-argument: it’s not exactly good for the environment and also, that’s expensive-this is free. Now, who doesn’t enjoy popping those little pockets of air? It’s the perfect stress reliever and the Apple version of this App is just so darn encouraging. It always tells us we did a good job...for doing something so simple. We like those positive feelings while waiting for the line to move and our lives to carry on.
8. Pimple Popper by Room Candy Games (Free)
How it’s played: There are zits on your phone’s face and you have to squeeze the icky thing out of it and make it all clean and pretty.
It’s on this list because: Let’s all admit to liking some things that are gross because we’ve all felt that wave of triumph after popping a zit. Disgusting as it may seem, those people in facial centers are probably always cheery because everyday they gain some form of satisfaction from clearing faces from these nasty things. Now, while you’re in a queue for the cashier on your way out of the grocery, you can feel that sense of success with every pop you make. Yeah!
(Yep, it says brake. Sorry Grammar Nazis)
9. Crack Your Screen by Lemondo Enterainment / Crack & Break It by Giorgi Otiashvili
How to play it: There are light bulbs, fluorescent lamps, faces on pictures, and glass blocks that you can virtually smash. Awesome.
It’s on this list because: One, it’s very relaxing to break things, and we thank whatever divine providence was at work when this app was made. Imagine if you’re in a very long line or anywhere you’re stuck waiting and you have the option of snapping a picture of whatever/whoever is annoying you-and you get to break it, in a way that doesn’t hurt anyone...but fulfills you at the same time. That’s a very, very happy thing to have. On a less violent note, it’s nice to break bulbs while moving along in traffic. Great for curbing your temper and killing time.
10. Super Monsters Ate My Condo by [adult swim] games (Free)
How to play it: The tutorial in the game will explain it much, much better than we can but basically...uh, monsters are eating condos! There are condo units falling and you have to swipe things away so that similar-colored units are lined up and they can be transmogrified into points. Hey, look at us, using transmogrified in a sentence!
It’s on this list because: It’s the best time-killing app-slash-game ever! It’s easy, colorful, and fun! It’s not that hard to get to the next level, no feelings of frustration, and again, you can safely put it down when you have better things to do.