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Crymson’s Top 10 Mobile Games

Let’s talk about mobile games a bit.

I’ve played a TON (and I mean a TON) of mobile games. Typically, for my mental health. They help my brain by distracting it. The whole using the tools we have thing. However, they are also a TON of fun. Gaming on your mobile device has evolved to epic levels, you can now play Fortnite, PUBG, Don’t Starve and so many others. So, here are a few of the ones I play.

10. Pokemon Go/The Walking Dead: Our World/Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery

I know a few of you are confused. Follow me. These are games made by Niantic and they are all “on the go” games, meaning you walk, find things and interact with them. So they are similar (not the same) games, but it depends on what you prefer. Want a game that helps you get out of the house? Something to do on your walks? These are the games for you! I’ve played all three because I love Pokemon, zombies and the world of Harry Potter.

9. Food Fantasy

This game is IN DEPTH and not a quick-play-while-you-are-in-line kinda game. You are a chef in a fantasy land and have food souls that help you with your dream to have the best restaurant in the land.

This game has it all. There is a story, as well as side stories, missions, battles, guilds, catacombs, a restaurant to decorate, collecting, leveling… You know… I can’t even list everything that it has. With a very anime feel to it, this game offers you so much to do, all in one amazing place.

8. Gardenscapes/Homescapes

Everyone has their “match three” game and this is mine. Gardenscapes was the first. You inherit a large estate and, along with your butler Austin, you decide to bring the gardens back to their former glory. In Homescapes, you follow Austin back to his parents’ house and help them fix up their deteriorating property. These are great games when you are stuck waiting somewhere. On top of that, you get to make choices about the look of things, which is all I really want.

7. Hole.io

Ah yes, remember when all the .io games came out and it was the craze for… maybe 3 months? Well hole.io is my favorite and looks nothing like the other .io games. You are a hole in the ground that moves and must eat everything (reminds me of a webtoon I recently read). You have three game modes and three maps. You can compete (and eat) other players in this two minute match to become the biggest hole there is (there is a joke there).

You can play alone and try to eat everything on the map in two minutes (I have yet to get 100%) OR you can go head to head and be the last hole standing. Really, these jokes write themselves. Also you have your city map, pirate map and future map. PLUS your hole (stifle laugh) has different skins. I glide around as a flaming bat. *laughs way to hard*

6. Cooking Diary

Remember way back in the CD-Rom days, when Diner Dash was all the rage and you scooted around delivering food? Well this is the more advanced version. Your character wants to be an amazing chef just like their grandfather and make it in the chef world! You open different restaurants for different types of food. A burger joint as pictured above, a bakery for cakes, sushi/ramen, steak, pasta, and even an English breakfast place. You change some scenery options, upgrade your ingredients, add things to relax your customers and rush your way through the levels. This one has lasted the longest on my phone.

5. Merge Dragons

We all have a game about Dragons on our phones, right? I’ve had millions it feels like but THIS ONE has stood the test of time. It’s a plethora of different dragons, of course there is the element of merging three of the same type together it evolving to the next tier item. This counts for eggs, dragons, tress, flowers, you name it. They have frequent events for special dragons and regularly release new content to keep me interested. However, I don’t feel the need to log in every day so if I miss a day, no big deal.

4. Survival

It’s no secret that I love survival games. This is one of the few games that actually works on mobile and I’ve played many. It’s simple yet complicated and I’ve beaten it on all but the hardest mode. You are stuck in the woods and need to find your way through to survive. You will need to find food, shelter, warmth and all while you continue moving to find help. I may uninstall it from my phone but this is frequently downloaded again. If you are remotely interested in survival games, I suggest you try this free game.

3. The Witch’s Isle

This is a wonderful point and click type adventure on mobile. I did pay for the full version of this game. I adore the story, the pixel graphics, the multiple endings and even the character details. There is even a second story in the game. I really don’t want to reveal much but… you are part of a community that is trapped on an island by a powerful witch and you must break her spell before your lose your life.

2. BTS World

Don’t even act surprised. I love BTS, I love K-Pop and their game is like an amazing visual novel. You are thrown back to 2012 and it’s your job to get the group together and make them the amazing band that we know and love in present day. Not only do you get adorable cards of the members, but you take part in a visual novel style telling of being their manager. You level up cards, take place in events, make friends, play side stories for each member and learn more about the members. Win/Win!

1. Love Nikki

I have played this game every single day for well over a year now. Love Nikki is a visual novel style dress up game. Because you cringe at the words ‘Dress Up Game’ hear me out, because I used to think the same thing. They cater to just about every style. Want to be a Ninja? How about a Goth in Lolita dresses? Join the Navy? Traditional Chinese? Androgynous? Vampire? Ghost? Fairy? Princess? Pirate? They have them all. Your own house to decorate, a story to read, regular events, outfits to make from other outfits. You have Associations (think guild), friends, style competitions and so much more. This game is far past the simple dress up game and is full of fun things to do. I should know, I’ve played every day for years.

Do you play any of these games? Is there a game that you are SHOCKED isn’t on this list? Maybe a game you’d like me to try to add to a list in the future? Let me know in the comments below!

‘Pokemon Go Made Me Do It’: The Latest Craze in Passing Responsibility

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It has been two weeks since the ridiculously popular Pokemon Go released in North America and has since taken the mobile gaming market by storm.  I myself have never seen so many people walking in my neighborhood.  Families I’ve never seen leave their house except to drive off in their cars, kids I never knew lived in the area, and people from all walks of life wandering around, talking, and unwittingly getting more exercise in the course of a day than most of us would get in a week.  We’re witnessing a true phenomenon that I expect will spawn a plethora of similar, or outright copy-cat, apps and games over the next several years.  Augmented reality  games are definitely a thing now, and not going anywhere anytime soon.

I’ve read some great stories about people coming together, meeting up and sharing their interest in this game.  Just a couple days ago, I read a story a mother posted to Facebook about her autistic child who found a way to open up to other people through his love of the app.  Communities are building around the game, bringing people together who might not otherwise meet and often finding they have more in common than just their desire to catch imaginary creatures.

As usual, with the good, there is some bad out there related to this game.  People are getting hurt, wandering onto private property, stepping into traffic, and generally being complete idiots while playing.  The worst cases are the people who claim “The game made me do it.”  It’s almost like we have to say this a million and one times, and people still don’t seem to want to take any responsibility for their own actions, or lack of common sense.

Entertainment media does not make us violent, the cell phone doesn’t make us use it while driving, alcohol does not make us drink it, nor does any other inanimate object or service force us to do anything.  We choose to go out and do stupid things, drive recklessly, or drink to excess, causing accidents.  Saying, “it puts Pokemon across the street, forcing us to go get them,” just boggles the mind.

Everything in life, unless you never leave your block, is literally across the street.  When you’re playing the game, on your phone, it shows you the roads, landmarks, cliffs, and dangers.  Even if you’re distracted by the app, the app is showing you what lies ahead and you make a conscious choice to step onto the road.  From what I understand, since my son plays it, you don’t even have to be looking at your phone, it alerts you when something is close.

Bottom line people, use common sense and take responsibility for yourself.  It’s a fun game for people who like it, and has a lot of good about it, but it doesn’t cancel out the basics.  Look both ways when you come to a street.  Look up from your phone when walking, and pay attention to where you’re going.  Don’t trespass, especially on government property.  If you see Pikachu in ol’ man Flanders’ back yard, knock on his door and ask if you can go catch it.  Don’t sneak around the local police station at night.  If you’re out after dark, bear in mind curfews if you’re underage and don’t do anything you wouldn’t normally do late at night.  You don’t suddenly become invincible just because you’re playing Pokemon Go.

Parents, you’re under more pressure with this app as well.  Take it from me, it’s strange to see your otherwise introverted child, who rarely leaves the house, suddenly want to walk down the park in the evening to play this game with friends.  Granted, mine is older, so we aren’t as worried as I imagine parents of younger kids are.  Have you talked to your kids about strangers, where to go and where not to, and what to do if they are in danger?  These are all fairly standard topics for parents of active kids who get out and run around all day, but if you’re a parent of a gamer who spends most of their time indoors, this may not be the case.  Have that talk, and have it again.  Heck, go out with them, if you have an interest in the game.

I have to say, though, despite the isolated cases of the dumbs I’m seeing out there, there are a lot of people having a great time and meeting new people.  There’s been a couple of ‘ew, nerds, don’t talk to me’ articles, but really the overwhelming majority of people seem to be coming together around this simple little game.  With so much ugliness in the world, it’s a much needed bright spot.  Let’s keep that up, whether you’re a player, a parent, or a journalist covering the game.