Gaming apps to make the holidays more fun
Try these mobile games when you’re on holiday – they’ll have you and your loved ones in stitches while you battle it out to become the ultimate winner
HEN loading up the car for your family holiday, your bulky but beloved board games frequently don’t make the cut – and they’re often the thing you wish you’d brought along for some good old-fashioned group fun when you arrive at your destination.
The happy news though is plenty of incredible games can be brought along in your pocket! HEADS UP! This game is for those who love seeing their friends and family doing ridiculous things – as long as they don’t mind acting like an idiot themselves.
The game requires you to select a category, such as Celebrities, Accents, Movies or Animals, then hold the phone up to your head, screen facing outwards. When the phone tilts, a series of names or words will appear on the screen, which you’ll have to guess from your friends’ clues. The best part – you can set the game to record a video of your friends’ bizarre antics as they describe the word. R14* to download from the Apple App and Google Play stores EXPLODING KITTENS It was created by the brains behind Xbox and Marvel games, and The Oatmeal cartoonist Matthew Inman, so you just know Exploding Kittens is going to be an epic laugh-a-minute.
The game requires between two and five players (who’ll need the game downloaded on their phones) who select “cards” until one of them picks an Exploding Kitten, at which point they’re eliminated. Unless they have a Defuse Card, which allows them to do just that to the fiery feline using things such as laser pointers, belly rubs and catnip sandwiches.
Other cards offer similarly weird solutions to help players thwart the Exploding Kitten.
As Popular Mechanics beautifully put it, the game “plays a bit like if Russian roulette was crossbred with a deeply disturbing version of Uno”. R26* to download from the Apple App and Google Play stores PSYCH! Ellen DeGeneres’ Psych!, devised by the people behind Heads Up!, works just as well after dinner with the kids as it does after a few glasses of wine with a group of good mates.
The game, which all players need to download, requires you to come up with fake answers to real trivia questions to try to trick your friends. Players select one of several categories, such as Poetry, Name That Show and the oh-so-cheeky Adults Only.
You get points if you get the correct answer to the wacky questions, but you score big if other players choose your made-up answer over the right one. Free to download from the Apple App and Google Play stores COUP Players are dealt two cards featuring one of five beautifully illustrated characters at the outset, and the goal is to be the last one left with at least one card a secret.
The various characters come with their own special traits, such as the ability to “assassinate” your opponent’s characters, but you don’t have to reveal your card in order to perform these tricks – so you can bluff your way to victory and hope your friends don’t call you on it.
Private games can be set up with friends but users can also play against other players online anywhere in the world. Free, with in-app purchases, from the Apple App and Google Play stores WHO CAN’T DRAW Broken Telephone comes to your phone in this sure-to-be side-splitting game in which the first player is given an item to draw on the screen. They then pass it on to the next player, who has to re-draw whatever they think the object is, and pass it on again, until the last player guesses the object from the final drawing.
The best part is the chain of drawings which is displayed at the end, so you can figure out exactly where things went awry. Free, with in-app purchases, from the Apple App and Google Play stores LORDS OF WATERDEEP In this mobile turn-based strategy game, players assume the mantle of a masked lord who must recruit adventurers to go on quests. Completed quests gain them power and influence in the city of Waterdeep, which they can expand by buying buildings, and ultimately win by becoming the supreme ruler.
The eight-round game can be played alone against an AI opponent, but it’s great fun when the rival “lords” are all in a room together. Free, with in-app purchases, from the Apple App and Google Play stores *PRICES CORRECT AT THE TIME OF GOING TO PRINT