It's the weekend, Mothers Day even, and everyone here at Casual Gameplay has taken the weekend off to spend with our families. But we also realize you may be looking for something new to play, and so we'll leave you with a few choice selections of the latest casual games making the rounds on the download circuit. Be sure to let us know which of them deserves a full review.
Play with Fire
(Windows, limited demo, 70MB) Designed by Chris Bateman, Play with Fire is a highly unusual platform puzzle game in which you play a giant ball of fire—and burn things down. Each level presents you with a structure composed of different kinds of materials, ranging from non-burnable stone to a variety of others that burn more or less easily. Somewhere in the level is an exit, and to get to it, you have to burn things in the right place or order to reach it. Sometimes, if you do things wrong, the structure will collapse as it burns and make it impossible to reach the exit; sometimes you must move quickly as the object burns and the fire spreads to get to the exit before the structure collapses underneath you.
(Windows, Mac OS X (Intel), limited demo, 8MB) - A brand new action puzzle game from KarjaSoft in which you play as Windsor, a border collie, on a mission to reach the sheep jumping competition in Woolyville. To get there you must guide and protect your flock while overcoming obstacles such as predators, bandits, logic puzzles and stubborn sheep. There are 80 levels spanning 3 quests in this charming and cute, non-violent game for the whole family.
Mystery of Shark Island
(Mac/Windows, limited demo, 12MB) Waking up one morning, you are shocked to realize that you are stranded on a deserted island and know nothing of how you got there, where the island is located or what its history is. Roam the gorgeous beaches and collect beautiful sea shells, rocks and sea glass to unlock the mysteries of a lost civilization. Find the right ones and the mysteries of the lost island will begin to unravel before your eyes! Can you solve the Mystery of Shark Island?
(Windows, limited demo, 17MB) Raise magical pets and fight monsters in an enchanting kingdom. Raising pets produces eggs that can be redeemed for cash or hatched into more pets to produce more eggs, etc. Grimm's Hatchery features 20 types of magical pets, four hatcheries, and several villages to enjoy. In addition to raising the adorable creatures, you can also create new breeds of pets and solve quests for the villagers. To keep you challenged, the game offers 3 difficulty levels and 6 areas to unlock. The game also features lots of clicking, so be forewarned(!) If you can get past all the clicking, it can be rather addictive.
The Apprentice: Los Angeles
(Windows, limited demo, 50MB) Play for the top spot in the Trump Organization in this unique twist on resource management-style games. Earn the most money by serving your customers as efficiently as possible, combining strategy with fast action. You'll need to know how to prepare food, how to manage your assistants for maximum benefit, how to control your inventory, and more in order to win. There is even a free Flash demo of the game you can play online.