10+ free Windows Mobile games - Mobile Minute
But you don't have to spend a ton of money to turn your PDA into a gaming device. A few weeks ago we showed you five emulators that turn your Windows Mobile PDA into a pocket GameBoy or Playstation. This week, we showcase 10 great standalone games.
First up is an amazing 3D space shooter called Solterra. This game is designed to run on Windows Mobile PDAs with an Intel 2700g graphics accelerator, so it's pretty much just for Dell Axim X50v/X51v users.
Solterra was developed as a commercial game, but later released as freeware. The rules are pretty simple. Fly your ship, blast anything that moves, and collect the thingamajigs you can pick up along the way to beef up your spaceships weapons and armor.
Solterra looks great, you say, but I don't have a graphics accelerator in my PDA. Not to worry. When was the last time you plaid Space Invaders?
The truth is that PDA or Smartphone in your pocket probably has more processing power than the first computer you ever owned, and it can do far more than that old Atari unit you've still got hidden in the basement. A number of classic games, including Space Invaders have been ported to run on Windows Mobile, and they're a great distraction when you've just got a few minutes to kill waiting for a doctor's appointment.
You can also try ports of games like Pac-Man and Asteroids.
Old fashioned 2D games not doing it for you? How about a cross between Doom and Pac-Man?
Egoman is a re-imagining of Pac-man as a first-person shooter. The graphics are pretty decent, and the motion seems to zip along smoothly on a reasonably fast PDA.
It's takes a little too long for our tastes to turn around, meaning that you'll probably never see Blink, Pinky, Inky and Clyde as they come to steal your soul, or whatever it is that they do.
While we're on nostalgic games, let's not forget NetHack. This role-playing game has been ported to almost as many systems as Doom. It runs on DOS, Linux, Mac, and Windows systems. And of course, Windows Mobile.
In fact, the game has been ported to run on everything from Windows CE 2.11 for handheld or Palm-Sized PCs to Windows Mobile 5.0.
There are a ton of Tetris clones around these days. Everyone and their mom has developed one. But Kevtris is pretty much the cream of the crop when it comes to Windows Mobile Tetris clones.
The graphics are outstanding, the three difficulty levels are adequately challenging, and there's even an option to share your high scores with other users online.
It supports VGA devices, but runs a bit slower than on devices with a QVGA 320x240 pixels display.
A few years back, Microsoft released a mobile version of Hearts as a free download. The game had been part of an Entertainment Pack the company was selling.
Another game in the package was FreeCell, which Microsoft never made available for free. So here, have a clone.
If you're tired of playing Solitaire, Hearts is a great way to pass the time. Sure, you're still playing cards by yourself, but you get to play against three AI opponents. It's almost like having friends. Who keep beating you at cards.
Project GD is a top-down shooter that puts Space Invaders to shame. The only problem is that the game ends pretty abruptly.
It appears to have been developed as a student project and never finished. If you can get past the fact that there's no AI to speak of (the aliens pretty much fly in the same pattern all the time, much like in Galaga), the game runs great on pretty much any Windows Mobile PDA, has slick graphics, and very responsive controls.
There's nothing that can quite describe the feeling of playing DopeWars while waiting for jury duty. The beauty of mobile gaming is that nobody can tell what you're playing unless they're super nosy and go out of their way to look over your shoulder.
What's DopeWars? Basically, it's a strategy game where you have a set number of moves to buy and sell various drugs. Buy low, sell high, and see how much money you can top out at. It's pretty much a Lemonade Stand kind of game, but with dope.
Xonix is another classic game that's been ported to Windows Mobile.
You control a spider that has to scramble across a board while avoiding monsters. The goal is to cut the board into sections without letting monsters touch the spider or its web.
As the game progresses, it gets more difficult, with more monsters on the field. It's not rocket science, but it qualifies as a fun distraction for a few minutes.
We know you'll find this hard to believe, based on its name. But ScrabblCE is a game based on Scrabble. No, really.
The board is laid out a little different, and the scoring is just different enough to be horribly frustrating to hardcore Scrabble fanatics. That, and the dictionary you play with is not the official Scrabble Dictionary. So if you're serious about your Scrabble, I recommend checking out Handmark's Scrabble for Windows Mobile, which sells for about $20. For casual Scrabble players, ScrabblCE is almost as good.
Peter's Gamebox 2.5
Last, but certainly not least is Peter's Gamebox 2.5. This pack of games has been around for years, and it still packs a lot of bang for the buck. (Since it's free, the buck being file size. It takes up little space on your device, but gives you 8 different games to play).
The graphics aren't particularly impressive, but you get two types of Tetris, Snake, Cannons, a Jawbreak clone, an Arkanoid clone, and two types of Mahjong.
Peter Balogh, the developer of these games now works for PDAmill, makers of several new Gameboxes with better graphics and more distraction power.