Apps

10 offline free-to-play mobile games

Lockdown games to play!

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It’s the perfect time to disconnect. Maybe it isn’t because you want to; maybe it’s having an unreliable connection, hiding from work-from-home tasks, or you’re just about done with the internet for a while. Whatever it is, we all need a little dissociation from the hell the world has recently let loose.

Here are 10 free-to-play mobile games to hopefully help you get through this rough patch.

Cover Fire

Get it on Android and iOS

In Cover Fire, you lead a squad through sieged cities, deserts, and fields. You get prompted missions and encounter (surprise, surprise) enemies. Fundamental mechanics are to cover and fire which earns this game a slow clap for making it the name of the game. See what I did there. The game manages to maintain simple mechanics and controls while keeping some of the fun from playing an online FPS (first-person shooter). For people who like playing Call of Duty Mobile but don’t have a stable connection, fear not! This is a really good game that scratches the itch. 

Adorable Home

Get it on Android and iOS

Adorable Home is a cute passive simulation mobile game developed by HyperBeard. The game seems to be a tip of the hat to Neko Atsume by Hit-Point Co., Ltd. with cats being the surrounding theme. Adorable Home lives up to its name quite literally with cute creatures visiting your lovely home at random hours of the day; bento boxes for your partner prepped and ready, and of course, your lovely cats! You can decorate your home, prep bento boxes, and play with your cats. Enjoy the calm and passive play.

Dadish

Get it on Android and iOS

Dadish is a dad and a radish. His kids have gone missing from his vegetable patch and he’s off to rescue them. You’ll be exploring a quirky world while facing off fast-food foes on your way. This mobile platformer is heavy on the nostalgia with it’s charming pixel design and snarky humor. But out of everything, you’ll be humming away with arguably one of the best soundtracks I’ve heard from a mobile game. Don’t let that fool you though. Stages can get tough to go through which makes this a potentially good mobile game to add for speed runs.

Tsuki Adventure

Get it on Android and iOS

Ever dreamed of settling down to the countryside? Well, you’re in luck. Tsuki Adventure is a relaxing, story-based game filled with charming and adorable animals.  You can check in on Tsuki throughout the day, collect and harvest items, and visit locations around the country. This game has stunning design and you’ll need to see it to believe it. The game is charming in how laid back it is while maintaining a good amount of interaction. The one thing that makes this game strikingly good is its storytelling. Every moment in this game is beautiful: from the stunning view, to the stories behind each new friend.

Hungry Hearts Diner

Get it on Android and iOS 

This game will steal your heart away. If you’re looking for another Diner Dash game on mobile, you’ll like this one — but not for the reasons you’ll expect. Hungry Hearts Diner: A Tale of Star-Crossed Souls is such a wonderfully gentle game of a grandmother who keeps cooking for the people who come to her restaurant. You can talk to your customers and have a deeper connection with each customer as they drop by. The soundtrack against the stunning graphics makes this game lovely. You should really give it a go.

Kingdom Rush

Get it on Android and iOS

Kingdom Rush is a tower defense game developed by Ironhide Game Studio and published by Armor Games. I know this is me being obscenely late to the party, this was first released as a free flash browser game in 2011. The game has since been adapted for both mobile and Steam and has various iterations available. I’ll be straight with you, I’m not a fan of tower defesce games. But there’s something extremely compelling about Kingdom Rush, whether it’s cute art, the Candy Crush style story mode or just the mass of enemies that want to murder you. Either way, I almost didn’t finish this article from playing this game too much.

My Home — Design Dreams

Get it on Android and iOS

My Home — Design Dreams is a design simulation game with a twist of a match-three puzzle game. From a flat to a mansion, you can design and decorate everything the way you want. Since staying indoors and needing to reduce all human contact, I was weirdly in the mood for some interior designing. Since that’s impossible to currently achieve. I gave this one a go. It’s a really good game that incentivizes the its match-three puzzle mechanics. If you’re into designing your own home, you’ll have fun playing this one.

Cat Bird

Get it on Android and iOS

If you want a game that’s adorably challenging, I might have the game for you: Cat Bird. It’s a title developed by Rayumi Adventure, an independent studio headed by Ryan Carag. If you like pixel art, you might want to check other titles from the same studio because they’ve developed similarly designed games. This game is fun, adorable, and strangely unsettling when you find out in my review what I sat through.

Fallout Shelter

Get it on Android and iOS

It’s been out for years and, it’s here for a reason. We can’t just drop the classics on this list. Fallout Shelter is a free-to-play game that let’s you control and build your very own underground vault. It let’s you oversee a thriving community, building it one room at a time. You can explore the wasteland beyond your vault, and protect your inhabitants from incoming dangers from both outside and in. This is the kind of game that you’ll keep coming back to, probably because you’ve just remembered your starving inhabitants. Good for fans of the Fallout series, or if you’re yearning to build your own colony of vault dwellers.

Magic Tiles 3

Get it on Android and iOS 

It wouldn’t be fair to drop the classics on this list. If you were playing Tap Tap Revenge when it was released around the early 2000s, Magic Tiles 3 isn’t a far cry. Magic Tiles 3 is a popular piano game that has you tap on black tiles before they reach the bottom of the screen. The game will seem simple at first but, once you get into the groove, it’ll get addictively difficult. Magic Tiles 3 has various quests that let you unlock more songs to try out and play. It even has a battle mode to compete against your friends and other players when you’re online. If you can, download as many songs as you can when you can.

I tried to add as many offline free-to-play mobile games under different genres as I could. Hopefully, you get to find the game to fill your time with something fun on this list. Not everyone has access to stable and reliable connection. Even then, not everyone wants to stay taped to the internet day in and out. So, if you have a good offline free-to-play mobile game to add, let us know!

Apps

Next Android update is Android 12.1, not Android 13, rumor says

Just a minor update

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One of the highlights of the year is a new Android update. Like clockwork, Google updates the biggest mobile operating system in the world. It’s gotten so popular that the entire industry speculates on the codename each update is attached with even if the company stopped doing them years ago. The hype is there. However, Android users might have to taper their expectations next year. Instead of Android 13, Google might launch Android 12.1 next year.

Reported by XDA Developers, the rumor speculates that next year’s Android update will just be a minor one of the upcoming Android 12 this year. According to one of the publication’s recognized developers, Google attached an “sc-v2” tag for the next Android update, instead of “T” for “Tiramisu,” the internal codename for Android 13. For those who still follow the internal codenames for Android, “sc” refers to Snow Cone, the internal codename for Android 12. As such, it’s natural to assume that the next update is just Android 12.1, rather than Android 13.

It’s been a while since Google released minor updates in lieu of major updates. However, it’s no surprise. Android 12 is already a big update, relative to the past few updates. The update features a revamped design called Material You. Google can believably improve the new update more before launching a major one.

SEE ALSO: Android 12 is Snow Cone

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Apps

Google starts rolling out Material You apps

More coming this month

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There is no one more excited for Google’s upcoming products than Google itself. Though the company hasn’t officially launched its products yet, Google has persistently teased everything in the weeks and months leading to their debuts. Now, the company is slowly rolling out Material You apps ahead of the Android 12 launch.

Material You refers to Android’s design revamp for the upcoming Android 12 update. An evolution of Google’s smooth Material Design, the new design personalizes the user interface and the phone’s apps according to the user’s preferences. Android 12 is all about customization.

Of course, since the update also affects apps, Google is also rolling out apps that reflect the new design. Despite the lack of Android 12, the new apps are coming out ahead of time. Officially announced by Google’s Workspace blog, Google Drive will start the new push with its rollout starting today. After Drive, Google Meet will come out on September 19, and Google Calendar will launch on September 20. Google Docs, Slides, and Sheets have already rolled out a week ago.

The new apps will feature new navigation bars, floating action buttons, and a new font called Google Sans. The new font will make readability easier for smaller font sizes.

Android 12 is set to launch soon. Additionally, Google is already launching teasers for the upcoming Pixel 6 series featuring the new, in-house Tensor chipset.

SEE ALSO: Android 12 will make Chrome more colorful

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Spotify launches new recommendation feature, Enhance

Personalize per playlist

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Adding new songs to your Spotify playlist can be quite a monumental task. Trying to grab songs from a recommended playlist might not always mix and match well with a personal playlist’s mood. Spotify is improving recommendations with an all-new feature rolling out today: Spotify Enhance.

Launching in several countries all over the world, Enhance will automatically add songs which fits a playlist’s mood. Users who have the feature can toggle the feature on every playlist. The recommended song will then pop up in the playlist’s songs. Likewise, users can toggle the feature off to get rid of the recommended songs.

However, rather than dumping the recommendations at the start or at the end of a playlist, Spotify will sprinkle them after every two songs, providing a healthy balance between old and new songs. The feature will add only 30 songs at a time.

Additionally, these songs aren’t officially added to the playlist yet. If a user finds a song they like, they can link a plus icon beside the song. Added songs will be in the playlist permanently.

The feature will come only to Premium subscribers. Likewise, not every country will have the feature at first. Spotify hopes to roll out the feature for more countries in the coming weeks and months.

SEE ALSO: 3 eargasmic podcasts to listen to on Spotify’s Music+Talk

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