Created by Taro Ito, a Japanese game developer whom publishes his work under the name GameDesign, this domino-toppling game transported me back to Nan's living room floor where rows of dominoes and blocks often stood, precariously on end, awaiting destruction.
Dr. Stanley's House was created by James Li and is a point-and-click adventure game. It has a mysterious plot with some twists and turns that is very creepy at times. The lush colored graphics provide a striking contrast to the moody atmospheric soundtrack, with several cut scenes that develop the story as you play.
And for those who enjoy a good challenge, they claim that this logic puzzle was written by Albert Einstein himself, and that 98% of the people in the world could not figure it out. Which percentage are you in?
Anode and Cathode, that very talented French duo responsible for many hours lost inside their previous point-and-click adventures, have done it again. The Casino is the latest of their efforts to put your clicky finger to the test. And while I found this one to be just slightly disorienting as compared to their previous efforts, the quality of workmanship appears to have been left intact.
No Brainer is a fast-paced quiz game that asks what seems to be a never-ending string of questions, all of of which require a simple yes or no answer. It's a fun and hilarious game that is sure to put a smile on your face, and even more fun when playing with some friends.
A couple of brand new games being offered by Tonypa on his website that features other excellent casual Web games, as well as tutorials for those interested in creating games in Flash.
Gemsmith comes in two varieties: Ruby and Diamond. Both games feature similar gems and hexagonal play fields, and yet...
Grow RPG takes the classic formula that made the original so compelling to play, and adds additional RPG-like elements, such as enemy combat, a shop to buy health and weapons, and even a dungeon with hidden treasure. Voted Best of 2005 by the visitors of Jayisgames.
Probably one of the greatest Flash games ever created and made available for free on the Web, The Asylum is a surprisingly rich interactive narrative experience and it continues to surprise and delight gamers of all ages from all over the world. Won't you help these adorable cuddly toys overcome a distressing past?
Just click on blocks to move them into the target configuration for each of the 20 unique levels. Award-winning Stackopolis is not only an enjoyable game to play, it also features gorgeous pixel graphics and animations, and a delightfully dramatic soundtrack that pushes this game over the top into highly addictive territory. You've been forewarned.
Another great word game from East of the Web, this one combines the word finding frenzy of Boggle with the scrambled word anagrams of Jumble. 8 Letters in Search of a Word is a race against the clock to score enough points to move on to the next level. Points are awarded by finding words within an 8-letter anagram, established at the beginning of each level.
Just found this excellent collection of word games created in Flash and published by East of the Web. There are currently eight (8) different games to choose from, and each one offers a unique gameplay experience than usual games in its category.
CodeWord blends components of guess-the-word games like Hangman with...
A nice 3D version of the classic Windows 'tool', Bombsweeper 3D features a variety of polygons with an increasing number of sides to test your puzzle solving and deduction skills. Although much of the game's text is in Japanese, anyone even remotely familiar with Minesweeper will be able to pick...
Comboling is an original puzzle game that is very easy to pick-up and play. It was conceived by Jérôme Lulling in the mid-80's by examining tiles on the bathroom floor. He eventually teamed up with Dmitry Irsheins to help bring his idea to life, and the result of that collaboration is this remarkable Flash game.
Lately I have been enjoying this cute little platformer with a twist. Generally, a platform game puts the player in control of a game character that is moved throughout each level toward a goal at the end. The term 'platform' comes from the many varied platforms that the player must...
In Travelogue, another Flash escape-the-room game, you find yourself in a hotel room far from where you'd like to be. Use what resources are available to navigate around the area and locate items and clues that you can use to help you escape.
Most of the puzzles are logical in design,...
Case Western University student, John Tantalo, created this elegantly simple game with gratifying and addictive gameplay. Planarity is a Flash puzzle game that is played by clicking and dragging the vertices of a 2D geometric shape to rearrange them such that no lines cross. Simple to understand, difficult to put down.
Toby Godden, of Vibration13.com, has made available two different games that are both worth playing: Virus and Treasure Hunt.
Virus is composed of several puzzles that you must solve separately and together to win the game. In other words, the answers you gain from one may be used to solve another.
Featuring original and commercial-quality graphics, animation and sound, Mink of 3wish.com has created these cute, point-and-click, cartoon puzzles in Flash. Each episode is rather short in length—just right for some lunchtime fun or a coffee break—and all of them contain humorous and inventive situations and clever puzzles to solve.
Remember those word problems and logic puzzles from school? They probably weren't much fun back then when the fear of failure or a bad grade was hanging over your head. Well now there is a site filled with logic puzzles, complete with handy graphs and tables (made in Flash) that you can use to deduce your answers.
Because the Hapland games are so much fun and unbelievably popular, I wanted to post a link to this similar game for you to try. Although not quite as well done as Robin Allen's games, Puzzleland is much easier and there are more levels to solve. Each level details the...
From the Chevron Cars website comes this action strategy game of collecting pearls. Pearl Hunt is an addictive Flash game in which the object is to drop ten (10) pearls down through the maze to the bottom before time runs out. It's a fun little game that won't take up a lot of time to play a game or two.
Just when you thought you had mastered the art of waddling back and forth in a straight line across the screen using only one button, the folks at GlobZ release 40 new and more difficult levels for you to waddle through. Truly for the hardcore and not for anyone who gets annoyed when frustrated by a game. Level 37 is a killer. Consider yourself warned.
From the excellent French Flash games site, Globz.com, comes this creative action arcade game with a unique and addictive gameplay mechanic. The objective in Twin Spin is to 'walk' a baton around the play field and explode all of the balloons that exist for each level.
Sudoku is a popular puzzle game that began in Japan and has subsequently spread like a wild fire throughout the rest of the world. Similar in form to a crossword puzzle, the game is played using numbers only. There is no math involved, just the correct placement of the digits into every row, every column, and 3x3 square. Web Sudoku provides your daily puzzle fix conveniently over the Web.
An unusual Flash game with a variety of gameplay possibilities, Magnetism lets you select the type of game that is right for you. Created by Tyler Glaiel, a 14 year-old budding game developer, Magnetism is a unique puzzle game that features challenges of strategy and skill with an emphasis on...
Created by Philipp Lenssen, Games for the Brain is a series of almost 40 different puzzle games to exercise and challenge your brain. It's a remarkably well-designed site that features a good variety of puzzles to tickle your gray matter.
Voted Best of 2005 by the visitors of Jayisgames, Hapland 2 is less a continuation of the original as it is the same game with all-new puzzles: The objective is once again to open the stone portal and unleash the power within. And while that doesn't exactly give any clue as to what to do, it does at least provide a goal to work towards. Thanks to its popularity, there is now a Hapland 3!
One-half interactive story and one-half game, Survivoo is a quirky Japanese Flash piece that is charming, cute, and bizarre. Although all the text in the game is Japanese, that doesn't spoil the fun this short little adventure has to offer. Most of the animation speaks for itself. It tells the tale of a little Frenchman who is swept away to a far away land of peculiar beasts that make very strange noises.
There's a lot to love about LightForce Games in Athens, Greece. Nick Kouvaris, and his wife Helen, develop Flash games as a hobby and make them available to play on their LightForce Games website. Most of the games are clones of classic puzzle games, and yet all of them are presented with a simple and consistent style.
The Machine is a Shockwave game about a normal computer interface gone awry. The object of the game is to correct the chaos, right the wrong, and make it through to the end. In other words, figure out what to do on your own because the journey is the reward. What I will say is that you will only need the mouse to point, click, and drag.
Unlock is a unique little puzzle game in which you must unlock the secrets of each stage to advance to the next. Some stages are easy, while others are maddening difficult. This game will tease your brain and test your patience and resolve.
Another game designed by Uminin of Flash...
I have point-and-click happiness to spread throughout the world today in the form of a cube. Not so much a puzzle as it is an interactive narrative that unfolds with each click of the mouse in the appropriate place. See what happens when a mysterious cube falls out of the sky and lands on the ground in the middle of a very round town filled with round things.
I broke down and bought a PSP over the weekend so I could play Lumines. And now, that is all I can think about. The game is brilliant, loads of fun, and the music is infectious. In fact, I have to post this game quick because the battery on the...
The grandaddy of all escape-the-room games, Jan Albartus' Mystery of Time and Space dates way back to 2001 which, in terms of casual Web games, is almost the beginning of time. In MOTAS, you don't get to escape from just one room, oh no. There are now 20 rooms to escape from! Limber up those point-and-click fingers, you're about to embark on an epic classic.
Which side are you: right-brain or left-brain dominant? While right-brain dominant people use their intuition and emotions to guide their decisions, left-brain dominant folks are more sequential and time-oriented in their approach. Perhaps you are middle-brain dominant, meaning that you vacillate between the two hemispheres when making decisions. If unsure,...
You don't know where you are, and you don't know what you're doing there. You just know you have to get out. Such is the scenario that The Doors drops you into when this excellent point-and-click adventure game begins. Truly one of the best of its kind.
A lovely Flash point-and-click game from (fictitious) development company White Kiwi, this one will keep you busy for just a short while. It was created as a class project by a group of students, and it is quite enjoyable and very pretty. The world would be a better place with more games like this.
From the creator of Treasure Box—an engaging and clever interactive Flash puzzle that showcases the author's artistic talents—comes another such piece with a clearer objective than its predecessor. It is an imaginative work of art filled with sights and sounds that include various puzzles to solve. The objective is to find all 5 stars and then place them onto the wheel of fortune.
Although this Flash puzzler is similar to other sliding-block puzzle games in its class, what I find special about this one is its presentation and execution. The goal of Orbox is to navigate the blue and yellow blinking box to the red goal in the fewest moves possible using just the arrow keys for control.
Deep from within the bowels of the seriously twisted mind of Robin Allen comes this Flash game simply titled: Hapland. The author claims that it is "more an interactive world of bizarity" than a game, yet there is indeed a 'win' condition and it has something to do with lighting both torches to open the stone portal and thus unleashing the power within. And now with sequels: Hapland 2 and Hapland 3!
This Flash remake of Taito Corp.'s now classic Puzzle Bobble (called Bust-a-Move in the US) looks and plays just like the original. Use the arrow keys to aim, and press the space bar to shoot. It's just that simple to play. The music is a bit repetitive, but otherwise the game plays great.
A fun little Flash piece that is more web toy than game, really, and yet the score tally gives this mesmerizing diversion an addictive quality. Simply click anywhere in the grid to activate a cell and watch the chain reaction develop.
This pretty Flash puzzle game is oddly titled Bear & Cat, and yet it is really just a clone of PopCap Games' popular game of Zuma from a couple of years ago—which itself was a clone of Mitchell's Puzz Loop game from 1998.
The player shoots colored balls onto the play...
Set is a DHTML-based Web game that offers a new puzzle to play every day. The object of Set is to find the 6 "sets" of three cards each that go together.
Each card in the game has on it four (4) distinguishing features: color, quantity, symbol, and fill. Color will...
Net is a game about connections. There is a central energy source, and the objective of the game is to connect all devices to the energy source in the fewest moves possible. Of course, if you're like me, I ignore the number of moves and just try to finish a puzzle. Subtitled "The game for the mind", this game definitely falls into the category of a brain teaser.
Junkbot offers Lemmings-like gameplay in a Shockwave action puzzler that is both simple and fun to play. By using the available Lego blocks, reassemble each level to guide Junkbot over the obstacles and to the garbage cans so it can eat. Collect Gold cards to gain access to more buildings with even more levels.
A clone of the classic Loopz game for the Atari ST computer, Double is a Java applet, written by Martin Koerwien and Michael Kraus, that brings to the browser the same addictive and challenging gameplay.
The object of the game is to place random pieces on the play field to form closed 'loops' which then disappear to make room for more. You may rot...
The Dark Room is an absolutely brilliant Flash puzzle game that is as gorgeous as it is enjoyable. Using only the mouse, point, click and solve the mystery of the dark room in this amazing and remarkable hi-tech themed puzzle game. Created by Jonathan May of Woolythinking.
Global Player is a Flash game designed to test your skills at sorting packages and routing them to their proper destinations. Everything in the game is color coded, and each level consists of a system of conveyor belts and switches. These give way to multiple destinations where transportation awaits to receive each package and send it on its way.
For a thousand years, the prairies of Siberia were plagued with saltacoles, the rarest species of mollusk. But now, only a single male remains and it is trying like a crazy person to reproduce. Fortunately, he learns there is a female that exists, and sets out on a journey through 5 terrible caves to be with his love and save the species. Experience this beautiful and original Flash game by Voet Cranf.
File this under: Games as an art form. While I do not often find myself playing Chess (read: I suck at it), I do like to play when I find a game that offers something besides the mere basics. Thinking Machine 4 is just such a game. The authors state that the goal of the piece is not to make an expert chess playing program but to lay bare the complex thinking that underlies all strategic thought.
The objective in RefleX is to guide the moving ball throughout each level, collect all the gems, and then make it to the exit. Featuring appealing pixel graphics and solid game physics, the gameplay is addictive and at times very challenging. Each level offers a puzzle to be solved, and the action-oriented nature of the game makes it a joy to play.
Caray Snake is a variation on the classic arcade game Snake where your tail gets longer with each object eaten, and you must avoid running into your tail. What makes this Flash game different is you move the snake only one square at a time using the arrow keys. The object is to clear the board to move on to the next.
While the graphics of this gam...
This simple and elegant Flash game looks like a work of art: minimal design paired with maximum gameplay. While not an original concept, Gridlock features classic sliding-block puzzle gameplay that will surely exercise your brain. A well-executed game in the genre, and a very beautiful game to behold.
Is it any wonder that the simplest games to play are often the popular ones? 12many is a nice little Flash game from Tonypa that has been making the rounds on the Web, and for good reason: the rules of the game are simple and easy for anyone to understand.
This Mr. Driller clone, created in Flash by Max K., is a decent version of the original game by Namco. Driller uses the arrow keys for movement, and the space bar for drilling. The object is to drill down through the blocks as far as you can without running out of air, or getting crushed. The level of difficulty determines how many rows of blocks y...
A game in which you're given magnetic control over the environment in the form of a bunny with a electromagnet for a head. The premise of Magnet 2 is a bit odd, but the gameplay formula works brilliantly. Each level presents different objects and obstacles where you must maneuver the magnet to attract the objects into the goal. Magnet 2 proves that realistic high-tech graphics are not required for creating games that are engaging and fun to play.
This pair of Flash games, hosted on Nobelprize.org, teaches you about the physics of liquid crystals while playing.
Crystallite is an action puzzle game, similar to Tetris, where you position the falling blocks by rotating them before fitting them in their place. Use the right and left arrow keys to position the blocks, and the up and down arrows ...
The 1982 classic arcade game of Q*bert, re-created in Shockwave for online play over the Web. The object of the game is to move your Q*bert around the play field, hopping onto each square to turn it to the target color shown. While the default keys to use for movement are U, K, H, and M, the game does allow you to change them to suit your preferenc...
This Flash game is from Scenta, the same UK folks behind Reverse. Also created by Mobasher Lqbal, Nucleus features the same minimalist-type graphics, which are clean and simple, and adds atoms and valence electrons to create a sort of platform jumping game that is a lot of fun.
In a mad free-for-all running door-to-door grabbing as much candy as you can, let nothing or no one stand in your way. And when you're all done, come back inside and have some fun with this cute little game from Cartoon Network where you get to do it all over again.
A cross between a point-and-click puzzle game, interactive art, and a Rube Goldberg invention, Treasure Box is a gorgeous and fun little Flash game that puts you to the task of finding the treasure of a king long since passed. It's a short and beautiful interactive multimedia adventure from an artist with a purpose.
This is a brand new Flash puzzle game by Tonypa, called NeliNurk. The object of the game is to locate rectangles on the play field by clicking each of four corners of the same color.
Kharon4a is a dark and gritty, point-and-click Flash adventure that will challenge the best puzzle fanatics out there. Sporting an unusual interface and enough biotech gadgetry and terminology to open your own laboratory, Kharon4a is a moody sophisticated game to say the least.
From Orgdot, a media lab based in Oslo, Norway, DNA Factory is a Flash game that features stylized pixel graphics with a biotechnology theme. Gameplay consists of aligning the 4 base chemicals of DNA into symbol pairs using the arrow keys on the keyboard.
You have been sent to detention with a couple of your friends, and locked in a room in the school by the evil principal seeking revenge. The only way out is to use your ingenuity and resources around you, along with the help of your friends, to Escape from Detention. Use your mouse to click on any of the three students, Serin, Geo or Bravo, then click to move around each room and pick up items. Inventory items may be combined to solve puzzles, and even shared between students.
Another entry for the Independent Games Festival in 2005, Girls TeamUp is a Shockwave game about teamwork, developed by Large Animal Games. With a mission to inspire all girls to be strong, smart and bold, Girls Inc. has come up with a game where you can solve puzzles by helping girls work together.
The game starts out very easy, and eases you in...
Here is another mouse cursor game that is nicely put together. Simple, minimalist graphics with levels of increasing difficulty, 20 in all. Guide the mouse cursor to the goal, however the control of the mouse is reversed. Simple and straight forward, Reverse is yet another short little diversion to cleanse the palette of your brain. Created by Moba...
A storm at sea has left you shipwrecked on a strange group of islands filled with mysterious gadgets and devices. Use your wits to solve the puzzles and escape it if you can. Archipelago is a point-and-click first-person puzzle adventure created in Flash by the amazing puzzle master himself, Jon May.
The awe-inspiring Flash graphics of Yenz are combined into a creative and original point-and-click adventure that has you solving the mystery of the Secret Garden. You see, the garden is in great danger and it's up to you to solve the mystery and save it, if possible. There are several easy puzzles to solve and several screens of unusual yet fantastic and beautiful art to enjoy while doing so.
From PopCap.com comes this beautiful and very popular, well-conceived puzzle game that is similar to games like Bust-A-Move. Gameplay consists of shooting colored beads onto the play field using the mouse for aiming and shooting, aligning three or more in a row removes them from play. Special power-ups and bonuses abound that add spice and variety, as well as strategic elements, to the gameplay.
Add together stylish pixel graphics, a compelling techno soundtrack, and challenging gameplay that appears deceptively simple, and you wind up with an excellent little action puzzle game called BLiX. This highly addictive game was created by gameLab and is hosted by Shockwave.com.
Another Flash game by Neodelight, Cyber Mice Party borrows gameplay elements from the classic game of Lemmings to create an entirely different take on the survival strategy genre. Each level presents a bunch of mice, a hunk of cheese and various items such as sticks, matchboxes, and different shaped blocks. The object is to use the objects to herd ...
An estimable goal from Atlanta-based company A Broader View, has inspired this Flash game with a global perspective: help the United States improve its disappointing knowledge of geography by challenging it to participate with the rest of the world in a geographical testing game, the Geography Olympics. The game asks you first to select the countr...
Almost twenty years ago, I would often play a solitaire game on the Mac called Shanghai that used Chinese Mahjongg tiles for play. Created by Brodie Lockard and released by Activision in 1986, Brodie is credited with the original idea, programming and artwork for the game. Since then there have been many clones and copycat versions, but most still ...
A brand new Flash game just released by Naive.it, and this one is named NaiveTown. Building blocks fall at a rate determined by the difficulty level, and you score points by stacking 5 like blocks to make a building. The catch is you can move the blocks once they have landed by clicking on the right or left edge of each block. There are also power-...
Similar to games like Go and Othello, this Shockwave game is all about turning the tiles (or I suppose 'nodes' in this case) to your color. It's very simple to pick up and play, and yet the possibilities for each move become many. Frustrating and difficult, the challenge is fun if you put a little time into examining how each move affects the play.
Based on a simple game of Cat & Mouse, the gameplay is turn-based where for each move you make, the guard (or dog) also makes a move towards you. The objective is to make it to the goal before you are caught. There are rules of movement you will need to exploit if you are to escape the later levels. Everything about this game reeks of quality.
If you have ever seen or played one of these Megatouch coin-op video games before, usually found in bars and restaurants, then you're probably familiar with a game on it called PhotoHunt. The game presents you with two identical appearing photos, placed side by side, with one of the photos having been modified in five (5) locations using an image manipulator. The objective is simply to find all the differences.
The latest of the point-and-click puzzle adventures to pop onto the Flash game scene is a short little story about a girl who has lost her head... literally. With gameplay very similar to that of Samarost, this game is charming and very enjoyable, the only downside is that it is over way too soon.
Jumble.com has launched a play-online section that features daily Jumbles, with a new one added every day. This version of the classic puzzler adds a timer, scoring, and even a hint feature if you really get stumped. Word puzzles are a good way to keep your mind sharp, and to give your fingers a break from all those button-mashing games.
The Asylum: Psychiatric Clinic for Abused Cuddly Toys, that's the extended name of this very odd Flash game. And the gameplay is just as strange: through various therapeutic methods, attempt to lead the cuddly toy patients to resolve their traumatic past experiences. If you have ever wondered if someone would ever make a game for therapists, it's time to stop wondering.
Roll the mouse over groups of similar bugs (2 or more) and click to remove them from the board. Try to leave as few bugs on the board when there are no more groups to click, as the number you leave is reduced from your credits before moving to the next level. You only have just 100 credits to start with.
The Telephone is a stylish and unique puzzle game in which you embark on an adventure by dialing in destinations. The destinations are 3-digit telephone numbers that you find in each 'level' and which advance you through the game. Each destination is unique in its objective, sound, and interface.
Micro Life is a real time strategy game (RTS) that is quite easy to play, and it has a lot of charm to compensate for the relatively light challenge it presents. Accessible to all ages, this game is one part simulation, one part strategy, and one part Insaniquarium all rolled into one.
A version of the original Prince of Persia game recreated in Flash. The original game, created by Jordan Mechner and released in 1989, used an animation technique called rotoscope to give the characters human-like qualities. It was also a lot of fun to play. This special Flash edition isn't quite the whole experience, but you should be able to at least get a taste of what the original was like.
Another puzzle game, this time from the Netherlands. This one is a new spin on the Rubik's cube genre, if there is such beast, and it's called Sloyd (I think they could have come up with a better name, although I have no idea what Sloyd means in Dutch).
Reflections is a classic game of lasers and mirrors (and bombs!). The objective of the game is to position the mirrors and lenses provided such that the laser passes through and illuminates each of the light bulbs. An easy game to pick and get started with, but later levels present increased difficulty and more complex lens types.
Created by Klas Kroon of Sweden, this little game is one of the tiniest Flash games I've ever seen. The objective of Blockdude is to move the little dude to the exit door by picking up and moving blocks to solve each level. This game is actually a remake of an old TI-83 game originally written by Brandon Sterner.
Another game from Japan, this adventure game is a bit of a mystery but looks promising in that it appears to be another one of those clicky puzzles like Viridian Room and like Samorost, and yet with a bit more action involved. All the text is in Japanese, so best of luck brave adventurer!
Viridian Room is a place you wish to escape from, but have you the soul to withstand the challenge? Muha-ha-ha-ha-ha! This point-and-click puzzle game was one of the very first escape-the-room type Flash Web games. Nicely done with eerie sound effects.
What may be one of the oldest games ever played, Mancala is simple to learn and yet difficult to master. This cute Flash version of the game is played using snails for stones and features both single player and multiplayer modes of play. Created by the talented folks at RocketSnail Games in British Columbia.
Lately, I've been wanting to play a game, called Mastermind, that I used to play a lot when I was in high school, but couldn't find a decent version of it anywhere online. The versions I did find were either buggy or weren't much to look at. So I made a better one.
From Shockwave Japan, this cute little Flash game requires you to click on adjacent animals to swap places and line up 3 or more of the same. It sounds a little confusing, and with the instructions in Japanese, I was a little confused at first myself. Just ignore the first screen with the cell phone, don't click it—it's an ad. Wait for the ga...
For the puzzle lover in you comes this cute little Flash game in which the objective is to get the silver ball into the hole by clicking on the telescopes. Telescopes can push or pull the ball across the grid. It's a very clever little twist on a classic puzzle game concept, and it even remembers the progress you've made through the game in case you have to leave and come back.
In one of the sections of Interactive Digital Media that I'm a TA for this quarter, one of the students wants to create a Simon game in Director. And while I think that a Simon-type game is entirely doable in Director, I also think that it wouldn't be much of a challenge. And that got me thinking about how much fun I used to have with S...
Here's a Flash game about gene sequencing from the UK which is surprisingly fun to play. The controls took me a couple of games to get used to, then I caught on to it quickly. It's all about constructing genes by piecing amino acids together in the proper sequence. A very odd premise on which to build a game, but it works quite well actually. Be ...
The first in the series of Grow games to be created by On of Eyezmaze from Japan. Such attention to detail went into every aspect of the game, from its animation and sound, to its graphics and gameplay. Grow is a very simple game to play, and a delight to watch the magic within it unfold.
Bubbels is a strangely addictive Flash game, like Bust-a-Move, from the Netherlands. There are actually five (5) different versions to choose from.