Taking the "-roid" Out of "Android Games"
February 18, 2014 7:23 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for peaceful, quiet, calm, relaxing Android games. Quell (and its two sequels) fit the bill perfectly, but I've played them to death. Digitized snowflakes within!

I love my Android phone. It is a tiny plank of magic! However, I hate 99.9% of the games available for the thing. I was delighted to discover "Quell" (by Fallen Tree Games), but thanks to my hourlong train commute, I quickly plowed through all three iterations. Can you help me find similar games? They don't have to look/feel/behave like Quell, but they should share its particular "Zen ne sais quoi". Here's what I enjoy in a game:

- Doesn't feature frantic/fast-paced gameplay - I'm playing to chill out, not burst a blood vessel.
- Doesn't rely too heavily on time constraints - I like to play at my own pace.
- Doesn't have Candy Crush-esque "pay to play" nonsense. I'll pay for a game, but only once.
- Doesn't involve physically tilting/rotating the phone itself.
- Doesn't require internet access to play (my data connection can be spotty).
- DOES involve self-paced puzzle and problem-solving.

So what should I play, HiveMind? Many thanks in advance for enlivening my commute.
posted by julthumbscrew to Computers & Internet (29 answers total) 73 users marked this as a favorite
Triple Town might fit the bill. You pay once to get unlimited turns, and then don't have to pay for anything after that.

Definitely try The Room and Machinarium, which are two of my favorite games ever. The Room now has a sequel, as well, which I've not yet played but am buying right now.

It sounds like Cogs might be your kind of game, as well.

Finally, there's a logic game called Sherlock. I found it really hard to pick up, but now play it as my going-to-bed game. The free version has maybe a dozen puzzles--there are two paid versions from the same developer, one adding, I think, 300 more puzzles, and the other adding 500? They're great.
posted by MeghanC at 7:32 AM on February 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Games like that I've got from previous Humble Bundles:

Hundreds. - Make orbs bigger until the sum is 100 but dont make them bigger and let them touch at the same time.
Cogs. - Simple fun puzzle game solved by placing cogs to turn things.
Incredipede. - Make new animal like constructions.
Nightsky. - Move the ball around the landscape by swiping.
Spelltower - spell words from the list to remove the letters a new row every word similar to scrabble with tetris.
Spider the legend of Bryce Manor - You're a spider run around and build webs to eat insects.
Zen Bound - Spin the structure to cover it in rope.
Machinarium - Point and click puzzle game as a robot exploring a steampunky world.

Not quite exactly what you want but still fun:
AAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAgh! Force= Mass X Accelleration (required tilt to play but fun and you get to be a basejumper)
Rediculous Fishing. (Again uses tilt to play)
posted by koolkat at 7:36 AM on February 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

I like Kami on iOS; There's an Android version.
posted by firstdrop at 7:38 AM on February 18, 2014 [2 favorites]

Gem Miner 2: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=au.com.phil.mine2

No conflict, digging for minerals, good humor. :)
posted by Setec Astronomy at 7:40 AM on February 18, 2014

Seconding Spelltower. It's (untimed) Boggle meets Tetris.
posted by PMdixon at 7:46 AM on February 18, 2014

Mosaika and/or The Lost City, both by Fire Maple Games. Really nice sort of Myst-like games with, IIRC, a relaxing soundtrack. They're short, though, maybe a couple hours to finish each one.
posted by Janta at 8:03 AM on February 18, 2014

I like* flow free on iOS.

*It's more accurate to say that I'm addicted to
posted by oceano at 8:11 AM on February 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Trainyard. The free version has an entirely different set of puzzles from the full version. There are lots of user-created games, too. (You need internet to download the user-created puzzles, but not to play them or to play the standard puzzles.)

I also second Spider, Sherlock, Machinarium.

Puzzle Retreat is fun; you need to buy extra game packs. I like Greedy Spiders, Nonocube, 9 or the paid version, 10, and Blendoku.
posted by jeather at 8:15 AM on February 18, 2014

The '100 Doors' games feature lots and lots of little puzzles. You solve each to move onto the next.

I'll second Mosaika and The Lost City, as well as The Room. I liked some of the puzzles in The Room better than the ones in The Room 2, but the sequel will keep you busy for longer. Get them both.

The Broken Sword games are pretty good in their Android form too.

Finally, The Curse is a nicely done series of puzzles, which gradually increase in difficulty without being too infuriating.
posted by pipeski at 8:21 AM on February 18, 2014

I really like BADLAND; the game play can be accelerated at times however.
posted by dcjd at 8:35 AM on February 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Color Zen! (I was unable to determine whether it requires a constant internet connection, though.)
posted by Vervain at 8:36 AM on February 18, 2014

Seconding Flow Free, which I like for all the same things you're looking for. It's untimed and relaxing. You can pay for more level packs, but the free version has hundreds of levels and no limits on how many times you can play. You don't need to be online to play.
posted by Akhu at 8:59 AM on February 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Micron (especially if you can play with the sound on). Free Demo, absolutely worth the couple of bucks that the full game costs.

BlockBlockBlock. I eventually found it to be punishingly hard (and I'm not willing to shell out $$ for hints), but it's a great challenge if you are good at puzzle games. Free to Play.
posted by sparklemotion at 9:16 AM on February 18, 2014

Osmos HD?
posted by nobodyyouknow at 9:19 AM on February 18, 2014 [5 favorites]

posted by EndsOfInvention at 9:24 AM on February 18, 2014

Seconding Color Zen. Very similar to Quell in many respects.
posted by SpiffyRob at 9:49 AM on February 18, 2014

Dream of Pixels is a lovely reverse-Tetris game with a killer soundtrack. I find it very relaxing.
posted by terretu at 10:47 AM on February 18, 2014

Ultimate puzzle is simple but I find it both challenging and relaxing.
posted by pootler at 12:46 PM on February 18, 2014

If you like music, look up Musaic Box. It's a clever puzzle game where you have to fit pieces into the outline *and* have them line up the instruments correctly. That sounds lame, but it really isn't.
posted by tacodave at 4:10 PM on February 18, 2014

Dots is available for Android, apparently. I like it (in the non-timed mode) because it's not a twitch game.
posted by Lexica at 5:54 PM on February 18, 2014

Sudoku: I'm a big fan of Andoku, though I much prefer the earlier version; see if you can find v.1 rather than v.2.

Crosswords: I like Shortyz. Requires some sort of connection to download new puzzles; can do this automatically or only by request. Some require subscription, but the app itself and most puzzles are free.
posted by FlyingMonkey at 8:49 AM on February 19, 2014

Trap is a clever "Qix-like" puzzle game.
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 11:02 AM on February 19, 2014

Codewords, like crosswords but no definitions. No time constraints, relaxing but interesting.

Dooors, and its 2 sequels. I don't usually like room escape games, but these are very clever and enjoyable. Just the right amount of clues embedded in each level, though if you get stuck, the answers are findable on the internet.

Trainyard, linked above, though eventually got too hard for me. But until then it was great.
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 11:23 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

I've been greatly enjoying Pixel Dungeon recently. It is turn based, so you can really take your time on it if you want.
posted by faethverity at 6:53 PM on February 19, 2014 [3 favorites]

I'm also addicted to Pixel Dungeon, and Dots. Nethack is also turn based and awesome, but quite complex to get into.
posted by Admira at 1:10 AM on February 20, 2014

There's also a decent port of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup available, if you want a rogue like.
posted by PMdixon at 4:35 AM on February 20, 2014

Four games spring to mind: Spirits, Waking Mars, Solar 2, and Ticket to Ride.

They're all very different, so maybe have a look and see what you think.
The last two are my 'wildcards': Solar 2 needs you to tilt, but it's very subtle and not "wildly-throwing-your-phone-around-like-you're-having-a-fit".
Ticket to Ride is based on the board game of the same name, but is relaxing and engaging for long periods.
posted by fakelvis at 5:13 AM on February 20, 2014

I'm always looking for games just like this for my commutes on public transportation. I've recently discovered Hoplite which, as long as the theme doesn't put you off, fits the bill perfectly. The game is free with plenty of gameplay, and there's a two dollar unlock fee to open the whole game. Best of all, no friggin ads or harassing you to rate it or permissions that make you wonder why some game needs to know your location and contact information, etc etc.

I'm also semi-embarrassed to admit I've been playing Buttons and Scissors which isn't much of a game but does a great job of keeping me my attention focused when in a crammed train.
posted by aspo at 5:17 PM on February 22, 2014

Coming in late to mention Blendoku. Arranging color blocks so they flow correctly. Harder than it sounds. The levels are not just straight lines - sometimes a pyramid, or intersecting lines, or an empty square.
posted by timepiece at 4:25 PM on February 26, 2014

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