Category Archives: Opinion

Destressing: 5 Online Games You’ll Love to Play

Destress This Mess

When you’re feeling worn-down, pressured, and stressed, sometimes the best thing to do is to turn away from the source of strain and let your mind relax. That’s what’s so great about online games. They’re quick, they’re easy to get access to, and they’re fun snippets of entertainment to take you away from your stress for a few minutes at a time. Let’s take a look at a few of the most interesting, stress-reducing games on the Internet today.

Idleplex

One of the more unusual trends in online gaming today is the rise of the idle game. Idle games are designed to work with minimal player input, allowing the player to enjoy the pure satisfaction of watching numbers rise and circumstances get more complex with every decision. Idleplex is six different idle games in one, asking players to build a massive tapestry of windows filled with one of six different mini-games.

What starts as a slow and silly game of keeping a bouncing goat in the air quickly evolves into a wall of wild, partially self-playing games where you rack up money for upgrades by the millions per second. Idleplex even has a convenient button to make it look like you’re working on a spreadsheet so you won’t get caught de-stressing at the office.

Robot Unicorn Attack

The “endless running” genre may have started with classics like Canabalt and gotten famous with mobile games like Temple Run, but few running games are as charming and addictive as Robot Unicorn Attack. This Adult Swim invention is ground zero for extreme irony, tasking players with navigating a magical land of floating platforms in the role of the titular mythological creature.

Crash through stars, capture butterflies and enjoy the 1980s synth pop of “Always” by Erasure in the weirdest quest for a high score ever. There are also variations on the original, including a delightfully dark “death metal” version, a mobile-only sequel, and an extra-challenging version that has the original unicorn transforming into other creatures.

Plants vs. Zombies

Sure, the supply of zombie-themed games is an endless horde, shambling through every genre looking for new games to devour, but this one is special. Plants vs. Zombies has a simple premise but deep gameplay, pitting the two forces against one another in a lane defense model for the ages.

There’s a single-player challenge mode, a multiplayer adventure mode, and a puzzle mode that’s good for fans of Bejeweled. It’s silly, it’s creative and it’s a must-play for those who get a lot of satisfaction out of besting greater and greater challenges. And when you’re ready for a new wave, a mobile-only sequel hit the market in 2013.

Poker

While you’re de-stressing, you might as well earn a little cash on the side. Some of the best online games are digital adaptations of classic casino games. From slots and roulette to card games and skill tests, these games are good for players who don’t have much interest in killing the undead, controlling a cartoon or going on an adventure. There’s a great community out there for dedicated players, the buy-in is usually pretty small and you have the chance to earn some cash besides.

Lumosity

Games don’t just have to be about mindless fun. Quite the contrary; games can actually strengthen your brain while you play. Lumosity is a system containing dozens of games designed to train your memory, reaction time, attention, and problem solving for players of all ages. These games have been proven effective by a variety of international studies, and the scientifically supported program has aims beyond simply entertaining and improving players. Lumosity games are actually advancing the field of cognitive science and making it easier for researchers to build better teaching tools.

Don’t let stress get the best of you. There’s an endless supply of great games online that are great at taking the edge off those high-pressure days. Some will make your brain stronger, some can supplement your income and some are just for fun. Happy gaming and don’t forget to post your high scores.

3 Ways to Speed Up Web Design Work

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There are many different ways that you can make your design team at your company work more efficiently. These designers are going to be creative minds and not necessarily the type to ask for change as they will become immersed in their work. These will be a couple of ways to speed up this process and thus make you and your company more money.

Fun and FREE! #1: Hill Climb Racing

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Fun and FREE! is by no means a review, but rather simply a headline that I may use occasionally to highlight some free games in the iTunes App Store that I have found to be of good quality.

For this first Fun and FREE!, I choose Hill Climb Racing by Fingersoft. The object of the game is to drive your car/SUV/buggy over an infinite number of hills that progressively get harder to surmount. There is no time limit, however the only limit that you have is your fuel which is appropriately used more as you tap (or tap and hold on the gas pedal) more.

A Budget Gaming Laptop, Does it Exist?

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Go ahead, Google “best gaming laptop for $XXX,” and see what you come up with. Odds are that many of the results you find will be forums filled with people saying “go build a desktop” or “you’re joking, right?” I recently set out to find a budget laptop that would allow me to be up-to-date until I get a very nice one for college. My criteria included a fast processor, 8GB of RAM, and some sort of discrete graphics card.

Microsoft reveals Surface TV ad – Does it matter? [Video]

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Microsoft has just released a TV ad for their upcoming Surface tablets, which primarily shows off its flexibility of using an ultra-thin snap-on keyboard accessory. While I really want the Surface to succeed, as many others do, I just don’t see it being enough of a hit to be a top-seller. Instead, I see it being a pretty massive flop. Microsoft has a lot riding on Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and their upcoming Surface tablets. The ad is a minute long, and demonstrates nothing else. You’ll find the video below.

24 hours with Android ICS & the ASUS Transformer Pad TF300T – Already selling it

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Approximately 24 hours after I received my ASUS Transformer Pad TF300T 32GB tablet (as well as its companion keyboard dock), it’s already packed up and ready to be sold to someone on eBay (as Newegg wants $82.20 for restocking purposes). While the tablet itself is basically fine, the software that runs on it is not (at all). The problems that have plagued Android, ever since it was first released, are still present in Android 4.0.3, Ice Cream Sandwich. In a nutshell, it’s all about the apps and the overall user experience of the operating system. There was nothing about Android that I actually enjoyed.

Google Announces Google Drive

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After weeks of teases and leaks, Google pulled the curtain off their latest innovation in the cloud computing space. It’s called Google Drive and it allows users of the service to store, share, and collaborate on their files almost anywhere.

As many anticipated, Google Drive gives users 5 gigabytes (GB) of free storage space for all of your files, including documents, PDFs, photos, videos, and more. Those who are looking to put a bit more in Google’s cloud can choose to upgrade from a list of specific storage plans. For example, users can purchase 25GB of space for $2.49 a month, 100GB for $4.99 a month, or even 1 terabyte (TB) for $49.99 a month. With these pricing-for-storage options, Google is looking to give users access to simple, easy, and accessible cloud storage whilst encouraging users to use other Google services such as Gmail, Google Calendars, and the new Google+ for a streamlined experience. As Google states, “[Drive is] built to work seamlessly with your overall Google experience.”