Here’s a list of some of my favorite pick-up-and-play games that are optimized for the iPad. Note that I have not included big-name titles like Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja or Cut The Rope and I have focused on less-known titles that many people will like to discover.
Most are free (with no catch; who likes freemium?) while some are paid. These are in no particular order.
Price: FREEPewPew 2 launched, the first one went free. Hence, it is a premium game that can be played for no price at all with no strings attached.
PewPew is a gridwars-style really really fun game with beautiful graphics. There are five modes in which you shoot other ships, dodge asteroids and more. I have an iPad 2 and I can only dream about what this looks like on the Retina Display.
All you’e supposed to do is connect orbs of the same color as they zip past you with increasing speed. The soundtrack is what makes this game better tenfold.
Again, this is also completely free with no catch. If you like this game, give Still Alive, another game by the same dev a try.
ZMatch makes use of the accelerometer as well. Basically, there’s a board with several different shapes tumbling around (motion sensitive). You need to touch three or more of the same kind and tap to burn them. You need to stop a fuse from burning out by making more and more combinations.
You can choose to get a new fuse and postpone losing as long as you want by adding a matchstick onto the board. But burning away (and thus removing the matchstick) is very difficult and more matches on the board make the game even harder. Hence, you can get a playtime of about 10 minutes per session from this game. Great for waiting rooms!
Simply put, this is a platformer where you play as the Internet-famous meme character, Nyan Cat and collect goodies while avoiding baddies. Oh yes, there’s also the catchy Nyan Cat song playing in the background.
Price: $2.99Adonit Jot models will work best).
At $2.99, I think this game is a little overpriced, but you get virtually endless hours of real entertainment. The app creates puzzles automatically (and remarkably intelligently) based on your skill level.
In The Greedy Sponge, you manipulate differently colored “Thingies” to disconnect and drop them into a cute (and greedy) sponge’s mouth. The graphics are modest, but the gameplay more than makes up for it. It costs only $0.99 and it's well worth it.