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Best simple-mechanics, casual games of the last decade

RamiusRamius Joined: July 19, 2000Administrator, ClubPA admin
edited March 2011 in Games and Technology
Yes, I know poll threads don't belong here. Yes, this is an abuse of power.

But with that out of the way, I'm trying to put together a list of the best casual, simple-mechanics games of the last 10 years, and I feel like I'm coming up way short on contenders, so I'd like to survey the crowd here for ideas.

When I say "best", what I really mean is games that have wide appeal (played by children, adults and grandparents) and game designs that are widely emulated or copied to produce "knock-offs" of the original. Sometimes, if a game is itself a knock-off, but is the breakout game of that game type, then I think that is the one to list. For instance, I have a feeling Angry Birds is copying some earlier games to a large degree, but every game of that type from here on out will be compared to Angry Birds, not to its predecessors, so that makes it the current "authoritative version" of that game mechanic.

When I say "simple mechanics" I mean to exclude things like Farmville, Mafia Wars, Cake Mania, etc.

On my list so far:
  • Zuma
  • Peggle
  • Angry Birds
  • Bubble Breaker (I mean this: http://www.bubblebreaker.org/ but I think this is a knock-off. I have no idea who makes the authoritative version of this game)
  • Bubble Shooter (like this: http://www.mybubbleshooter.com/ again I don't know who gets credit for authoritative version)
  • Dust (not sure this one meets the criteria, but my son and nephews have spent so many hours playing this game I felt it warranted including)
  • Bejeweled
    • Here's a thought - do games like Jewel Quest and 7 Wonders count as a separate game from Bejeweled, or are they knock-offs?
  • Mahjongg (not sure if I can include this one, and then exclude other ancient classics like pac-man, centipede, breakout, frogger, etc. - or maybe those all should also be included on the list. What do you think?)

So like I said - this list is too short. What ideas spring to mind for you?

Editing in some suggestions from the responses below.
  • Tiny Wings - yes, definitely the type of game I had in mind.
  • Geometry Wars - yeah, seems to fit
  • Wii Sports, Brain Age - borderline from the perspective of "simple mechanics" and "of the last decade", but worth writing down as "maybes"
  • Tap Tap Revenge - Tricky because it is tied to touch platforms only, and to a degree it is copying the Guitar Hero formula, not sure if I'll keep this one on the list or not.
  • [strike]Infinity Blade[/strike] - nope, doesn't meet the "simple mechanics" requirement.

Ramius on


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