I’ve been on a kick with flash games lately, for no particular reason. It is a taste I will acquire from time to time, typically while waiting for more commercial games to either be released or end up in my hands. (For the record, Disgaea 4 can’t come out soon enough, even though I still haven’t even played the poorly-reviewed third installment.)
The best flash games I typically play involve some tongue-in-check humor. For example, Rebuild has you rebuilding with other survivors after the zombie apocalypse. It’s a pretty standard grid-based, turn-based strategy game, but it has multiple endings and a fun amount of randomization. Each game lasts a couple hours, and I’ve played a couple times, enough to get all the badges on Kongregate.
Also high on my list is The Space Game, and its sequel, Missions. Both are simple resource allocation slash tower defense games, except, of course, IN SPACE. If the Muppets have taught me anything, it is that things frequently improve whilst in space, such as Pigs in Space.
I think the simplicity of all three of the aforementioned games snares me in. One of my all-time favorite games is Warpath, which is a fairly forgettable resource management game. It came out for Windows 3.1, and despite a new edition in 2000, it still looks and plays pretty much exactly the same as then.
The game is incredibly repetitively, which makes for a calming rhythm – You mine empty planets, and then put colonists on them. They make money for you, which you can use in a variety of ways: buy weaponry to take over enemy planets, turn them over to your side by buying influence, or invest the money back into your own home planets. The whole thing was basically a very basic version of Master of Orion, or a streamlined, not-crappy version of the space portions of Spore.
The odd thing about all of this is that I’m now far more into various casual games than when I was paid to review them for one of my friend’s sites. And speaking of that, it is weird to see snippets of my reviews from years ago used to poorly cite articles on Wikipedia, like here.
The Rebuild photo comes from this site.