A few new apps to try out this weekend
Many of us are still trying to digest a generous Thanksgiving feast, but we still rounded up a great selection of apps for our Apps of the Week. Each Saturday we have the writers here at Android Central tell us about an app that they've been using the previous week and why it has stuck around on their devices. It won't always be the best app in its category or a top seller, but if it works for them it must be doing something right.
We have another full list of app picks this week, with a bunch of games and a couple utility apps to round out the offerings. Hit the break and see if you can find a few apps to install this weekend.
Simon Sage - Badland
After a long wait, Badland has finally come to Android. Badland is a beautiful physics game with one-touch controls. Usually, it’s game over as you hit anything in a platformer, but that’s not the case here. In Badland, you control this odd little creature trying to flap its way through a treacherous forest. Debris falls in your path, and odd machinery peaks through the brush and occasionally knocks you around, but the really interesting part are the power ups you pick up. Some types make you smaller, and able to fit through tiny crevices, while others make you larger and massive enough to push aside obstacles, and others still spawn a batch of clones that you control all at once. You can play local multiplayer and try to nudge opponents off the edge of the screen, which moves gradually forward as you progress. The art style is certainly dark, but a little whimsical too.
Definitely check this one out if you're looking for something visually refreshing.
Download: Badland (Free)
Jerry Hildenbrand - PickMe Fruits
While we play games, send Tweets, take pictures and generally goof around with our Androids, we should never forget they are supposed to be smartphones. That means they need to be able to help you do the little things — like make sure the Cantaloupe you're about to buy isn't still green and yukky inside.
PickMe Fruits means I don't have to try and remember how to tell when a piece of fruit is ripe and ready (or even better — almost ripe). I know a few off the top of my head; I can pick out an apple or an orange easy enough. But after that I sit in the grocery store or farmers market and look like an idiot tapping on the side of a watermelon or apricot. That doesn't help.
You can install PickMe fruit for free, but to get any real use from it — as in how to pick through the hard ones like coconuts or guava — you're going to have to spend a buck. It's a small, silly little app, but it's also pretty darn useful.
Download: PickMe Fruits (Free; $0.99)
Chris Parsons - Doctor Who: Legacy
If you’re a Doctor Who fan than you should already have this downloaded but just in case you missed it, BBC and Tiny Rebel Studios have now released the latest game to celebrate the longest running science fiction show in history. Over the years, there has been a few Doctor Who games but none of them have been really good. Legacy, though, brings some credibility to the franchise finally by offering fantastic artwork and a fun mix of a Bejeweled and puzzle-like gaming. Best of all, it’s free and there’s no ‘energy’ system in use so you can play on without being nagged to buy upgrades and the link within the game. As far as games go it’s interesting and fun to play on its own but if you’re a Doctor Who fan you’ll likely find it a breath of fresh air in the franchises previous subpar games.
Download: Doctor Who: Legacy (Free)
Jordan Miera - Hunger Games: Panem Run
In light of the still-relatively-recent release of Catching Fire, Reliance Games and Lionsgate have teamed to bring an adaptation of the film from the silver screen to the mobile screen. This game is interactive and you can challenge friends to races, collect and share resources with them and other things as Panem falls into unrest.
Although I have yet to try out the social/interactive aspect of the game, I have enjoyed being able to do my best to avoid obstacles and becoming becoming a target practice for bees. It's a nifty little free game that helps me feel a little bit more of a connection with the world of The Hunger Games.
May the force--wait, wrong epic movie. May the odds be ever in your favor.
Download: Hunger Games: Panem Run (Free)
Andrew Martonik - Heads Up Charades!
I was introduced to Heads Up Charades by my family when we got together for Thanksgiving this week, and as it turns out it's a great party game. The concept is basically just the charades you know and love, with a digital twist. Open the game, choose a category and put your phone up to your forehead — the phone shows words that you have to guess with the help of the people you're playing with. When they guess right, you flip the phone down and the game moves on. See how far you can go and rack up points!
The game is free with ads or $0.99 to remove them — a bargain for a game you're likely to get hours of fun out of the next time you're at a party or family gathering.
Download: Heads Up Charades! (Free; $0.99)
Phil Nickinson - Google Wallet
I don't use Google Wallet for contactless payments. Nothing against that, mind you — it's just that pulling out a credit card generally is quicker and easier of me. That, and I'm old, and I don't like new things sometimes. But where Wallet has finally excellent for me is in keeping track of all those damned loyalty cards. Just scan it in, and it's attached to your Google account in Wallet. And that does a few things. First, it gets all those little togs off my keychain — and they were going to fall off and get lost at some point anyway. And because the cards are now in my Google account, it's one lass password I have to remember for some other app to keep track of all this stuff. Simple, easy, done.
Download: Google Wallet (Free)