A list full of tools, games and holiday fun
Welcome to another edition of our Apps of the Week column, where we highlight an app pick from each of the Android Central writers. We take a bit of time each Saturday afternoon to make up a solid list of apps for you to check out, each one being an app that is currently installed and in-use on our phones and tablets.
They aren't always the best-in-class or top-selling apps, but the fact that they're installed on our devices should at least give some idea of their worth. Read along with us after the break and see how this list breaks down this weekend.
Jerry Hildenbrand - Meme Generator
Having just the right meme to post at just the right time is a very important thing if you take trolling your friends seriously, like I do. The problem is that a folder full of Spiderman Headache or Super Cool Ski Instructor Guy and the like is going to get big. Too big to sort through for the perfect piece of Internet memery. Here's your fix.
Meme Generator Free is filled with the blanks for just about every good meme, and you can upload your own picture when you need So Tired Phil or Coat-of-many-colors Duarte, add any text you like then share direct from the app. There are no annoying pop-ups, no unsightly watermarks, the images are decent resolution (nothing ruins a good troll like a tiny picture) and it's free. You can pay to dump the ads if you would rather, but the free version is 100% complete. Trollin' done right is a beautiful thing.
Download: Meme Generator (Free)
Richard Devine - Google Santa Tracker
It's almost that time of year once again, so if you've got young children in your household – or even if you don't – it's time to get Google Santa Tracker loaded up on your Android phone or tablet.
Santa's 'developer elves' have put this app together so you can follow Santa's progress as he makes his deliveries around the world. But of course, that doesn't start up until Christmas Eve, so in the meantime there's a selection of festive mini-games to keep you occupied. There's only one time of year you can get away with this, so take advantage while you can!
Download: Google Santa Tracker (Free)
Jared DiPane - Canvas for Pebble
Having just recently picked up a Pebble I immediately started searching for ways to make the device a bit more custom and set up the way I like it. While there are tons of great watchfaces already available, I wanted to tweak one to my own liking. Having read a bunch about Canvas for Pebble I decided to check it out and see what I could come up with. Included are a bunch of examples that you can use and tweak, or you can start with a clean slate.
After tweaking for about an hour I was finally able to come up with a face that met my needs and gave me the information that I wanted at a glance. The ability to customize faces with such ease is dangerous because I can make a new face at any time, even on the go. If you have a Pebble this app is definitely a must have.
Download: Canvas for Pebble (Free)
Simon Sage - Pretentious Game
Pretentious Game is a minimalist game about heartbroken cubes. True to the game’s title, it’s full of morose narrative and Satie music, but you’ll also find some decent, if simple platform-based puzzles in there as well. It’s all pretty tongue-in-cheek, and if you’ve played Thomas Was Alone on the PC, the style will be very familiar. The first chapter is free, with two more available for $0.99. You won’t get a ton of replay value out of this, but Pretentious Game still offers a charming little story intertwined with puzzle gameplay.
Download: Pretentious Game (Free)
Chris Parsons - Double Dragon Trilogy
A few weeks back, DotEmu went ahead and released the classic the Double Dragon series for Android. When it was released, I didn’t have time to give a go but I grabbed it the other night and have been hammering away at it. In the package, you get all three games consisting of Double Dragon, Double Dragon 2: The Revenge, and Double Dragon 3: The Rosetta Stone and DotEmu has amped things up a bit by offering several different modes in the games such as Arcade and Story modes with story mode being the most immerse in that you have to unlock new stages and collect achievements. Although it’s arguable, I think DotEmu did a fantastic job with this release and it’s certainly worth the $2.99 they’re asking. The controls are a bit tricky but if you have a any gamepads kicking around Double Dragon Trilogy is noted to support most Android controllers, I’m using the Moga Pocket personally.
Download: Double Dragon Trilogy ($2.99)
Andrew Martonik - Cut the Rope: Holiday Gift
Adding onto the expansive Cut the Rope franchise, a season-appropriate "Holiday Gift" version is available with new levels and lots of fun. The game features the similar Cut the Rope gameplay and mechanics, but with a few more Christmas stockings, reindeer antlers and snow flakes.
The game is free with no option to remove ads that we can see, but in the end it's just a short expansion pack to the full-fledged versions of Cut the Rope that have hundreds of levels. This is one that you'll install, play for a few days around the holidays and then move back on to the full versions. That doesn't mean it's not a good bit of fun while you're at it.
Download: Cut the Rope: Holiday Gift (Free)
Alex Dobie - Pixlr Express
If you're looking for a photo editor that's easy to use but offers more advanced functionality than Snapseed, Autodesk's Pixlr Express is definitely worth a look.
The app includes a wealth of filters and borders and other artsy stuff, but it also provides some of the most-used features from desktop photo editors like Photoshop. You can control curves, tweak hue, saturation and lightness, sharpen and smooth areas, fix red-eye and heal spots -- among many other abilities. And the quick-fix option does a good job of turning OK-looking shots into something more impressive.
Best of all, Pixlr Express is free. There are too many features to list here, so check out the app itself to get acquainted.
Download: Pixlr Express (Free)