Five Free Apps that are a Total Time Suck

Wednesday 6 November 2013 by

1.     Tropes

It’s likely that a number of you reading have already lost hours to the TV Tropes website, but did you know you can get it in App form? While the entries don’t seem to be as complete as the website entries in places, and not all the links between articles seem to have transferred, but you can still spend many an hour lost in the hyperlink trail.


2.     Minion Rush

Games based on popular film franchises can often be a bit rubbish – made purely to capitalise on the film’s release. Not the case with Minion Rush. It’s a pretty basic infinite runner game, but the cute graphics and characters, the missions and the added element of competition between your Facebook friends mean you’ll be thinking ‘just one more go’ many, many times over.

3.     Candy Crush

There are probably few people out there who haven’t been spammed with requests for Candy Crush. Annoying as it is, there’s a reason so many people are completely sucked in. Deceptively simple gameplay means the game doesn’t require too much thought – perfect for those moments when you need to kill some time, but don’t have the energy or the inclination to do anything strenuous. But, increasingly challenging levels, some relying purely on luck, will have you replaying levels over and over because you were just… so… close.

4.     100 Pics

Half anagram, half guessing game, 100 Pics involves trying to guess what a word is within a category – such as ‘Things beginning with B’ or ‘Classic Cars.’ To help you, there is a picture with four tiles over it. For every tile you remove, you reveal some of the picture, but there are fewer points available. Points can be used to buy clues, or to unlock new categories. When you guess all 100 pictures in the category, you get 100 bonus points.

Some of the words are obvious, some ridiculously hard, and you’ll get increasingly protective of your points total – not wanting to spend any on clues, or lose out by removing tiles. And with about a zillion categories to complete, there’s plenty to keep you glued to your tablet trying to remember who that sports star is, or things beginning with ‘C.’

5.     The Tribez

There are plenty of ‘build up your farm/town/airport/various other locations’ apps out there, capitalising on the success of Farmville. Real time development games are as addictive as they come, and Tribez is one of the best (or worst, depending on your outlook). Like most, you start out with a small number of people and resources, gradually building up your village into a thriving metropolis as you complete quests to unlock new buildings and resources.

Tribez boasts pretty good graphics – particularly if you’re playing on the iPad or equivalent tablet – and a sort of storyline to go alongside the building game mechanics. But it’s the sheer scope of the thing that makes it such a time suck. As you progress you can unlock five new islands, each with new missions and the opportunity to build up another new village almost from scratch.

Because the game is so big, it can take a long time to load, with fresh loading time as you transition from island to island. Once you’ve been through the motions on all the islands, you can pretty much guarantee that enough real time has passed for some things to have completed on the first island, and before you know it, you’ve spent another half an hour going back through.

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