It’s not often that a mobile game consumes my attention for hours. I have nothing against the medium, per se, it’s just that a large majority of its offerings in the free-to-play category are downright exploitative.
However, when a developer uses free-to-play properly, the game can be a real slam dunk. To concern Route of the Cross, for example, a simple little game that won Hipster Whale a truck full of cash.
My last mobile addiction in a short series of titles is the recent one alpha bear.
This is a word game with mechanics taken from Scrabble and Carillon. You create words by selecting letter tiles on the board. A bear sits in the center of the screen. This bear grows or a new bear is generated if you clear all the tiles on one side. The tiles have a turn counter on them, so take too long to clear and it will turn into an unusable boulder.
This will prevent your bears from growing taller, and it means your score will drop.
The levels have specific challenges and you unlock new bears which add bonuses to your game.
There’s a payment wall, folks. Eventually you’ll reach a point where you either have to pay or spend your time waiting. However, if you drop $ 4.99, a decent price for a really good pun, microtransactions go away and in-game currency is earned at a rate that eliminates the need to wait.
Hey, it’s free, and you won’t mind the pay wall if you don’t mind waiting to play. This is what I did, and I have no trouble staying addicted to alpha bear. It is now available on iOS and Android.