iOS

Human Resource Machine can teach you coding, whether you realize it or not

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

There’s a growing movement amongst parents and educators that suggests that all children should learn basic coding in school. True, young kids might not aspire to be programmers or create the next big startup, but the benefits of learning how to code go beyond just knowing how to build software: It opens minds to problem-solving techniques and will help the children of today navigate tomorrow’s technology-focused future.

Surprisingly, games are helping to make the process of learning programming basics both enjoyable and effective. Minecraft has been a leader in this space, releasing a series of tutorial missions for the Hour of Code challenge, and an official Education Edition of the game is available. Even Apple is getting in on the instructive fun with Swift Playgrounds, which just appeared in the iOS 10 beta and teaches the Swift programming language with a blast of colorful fun.

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iOS

Hatoful Boyfriend is the ultimate bird dating simulator (yes, really)

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

Dating simulators are one of those distinctly Japanese styles of games that has never really broken into the mainstream here, but a small number of them make their way over (or are community-translated) for the hardcore fans of the niche. Still, even if you would probably never check out a typical dating sim otherwise, you should consider playing Hatoful Boyfriend

Why? Because it’s about dating birds—as a human girl. You’re the sole human student at St. PigeoNation’s Institute, but that species barrier might seem mighty easy to overcome when love blossoms in the hallways. Hatoful Boyfriend is a dialogue-driven, choose-your-own-adventure quest, letting you pick which birds to chat with and invite out, which classes to attend and clubs to join, and even your demeanor in conversation.

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Crashlands brings humor to an otherwise bleak survivalist game

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

Think of the movie Castaway... but your sidekick is with a robot instead of a volleyball named Wilson... and you’re in space and not alone. That’s Crashlands—maybe not so much like Castaway, but it’s a humorous action-adventure role-playing game with a survivalist focus. Developed by Butterscotch Shenanigans, a team who finds themselves exceptionally funny (and are, for the most part), Crashlands tasks the player with surviving on an alien planet after your ship crashes. Your play a space delivery person, Flux, who has only her wits and her robotic companion (named Juicebox) to help her in a quest for survival.

Here are three reasons why this thoroughly silly game is worth your time:

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iOS

Neon Drive delivers '80s thrills while testing your skills

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

As a culture, we can’t help but love the 1980s. Blame it on the kids of that era growing up and creating so much of today’s entertainment, or maybe we just have a sudden appreciation for garish colors and synth-pop, but the influence of that decade’s entertainment just isn’t fading. And Neon Drive might be its biggest fan, at least when it comes to iPhone games.

It’s a game inspired by the aesthetic of the ‘80s through and through, both broadly in look and sound and even specifically with pop culture references. As the title suggests, Neon Drive is absolutely drenched in glowing lights and vivid colors that pair well with the synthesizers, and it recalls everything from Tron to Blade Runner along the way. 

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iOS

Tengami’s laid-back approach to puzzles makes this a must-play iOS game

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

The opening scene of Tengami takes place in a tatami room, a traditional Japanese style consisting of matted floors. Tap ‘New Game,’ and the camera zooms in, onto a table that holds a thick book. Your first task is to open this book, because the entire game takes place inside this ornate pop-up book.

tengami book

Tengami is an adventure inside a stunning, dynamic pop-up book.

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iOS

Collect-and-battle-em Pocket Mortys brings this Adult Swim show to life

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

Who knew the world needed a Pokémon trainer parody? Adult Swim Games and Big Pixel have created a thoroughly weird, funny, and oddly enjoyable collect-and-battle-em title in Pocket Mortys. For those who aren’t familiar with Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty television show, just think of Back to the Future if Doc Brown was an abusive alcoholic and Morty was a neurotic, voice-cracking teenager. But you don’t have to be a fan of the show to enjoy this game—here are three reasons why Pocket Mortys is the next role-playing-game you download.

Meet Rick and Morty… and Morty… and Morty…: In this game, scientist Rick discovers that “Morty fights”—again, think Pokémon-style battles, here—have become a popular hobby in other dimensions. Rick has to defeat six other Ricks (another Pokémon nod, but this time to its gym leaders) with his team of trained Mortys. Yes, the entire premise of the game is a grandfather training and then throwing versions of his poor grandson into combat. But in defense of Rick, battling Mortys is a great deal of fun.

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