THE GIFT GIVING SEASON is fast approaching. Along with socks and blenders, there’s likely to be more than a few computer related products wrapped up with colourful ribbons this month. Of course once you’ve bought the shiny new Mac, PC, iPad, etc... there’s not always a lot left over for software. So, in the spirit of giving, stuff is great, but giving free stuff is even better, here are some free games you can give along with your computer gift this year. Of course, if you’re the recipient you’re welcome to just use these suggestions for yourself too. All these games are free, but they may have paid options, or expansions, or in some cases ads. Some will ask to leverage your social network connections, though none require it. You’ll want to research them a bit yourself to make sure you understand any extra costs.
Asphalt 8 Airborne (iPad) Possibly the best racer game for the iPad yet.
Bejewled Blitz (iPad) 60 seconds of eye-hand coordination at a time.
Battlestar Galactica (Browser) Fans of the series will want to check this out. www.battlestar-galactica.bigpint.com
Black Mesa (PC) Half-life redux.
Dota 2 (PC) Spin-off from World of Warcraft 3. Top down arena game with
huge user base. www.dota2.com
Dwarf Fortress (PC, Mac) For serious Net Hack or Rogue lovers only. This may be the most challenging game available for free today. You’ve been warned. www.bay12games.com/dwarves
FIFA 14 (iPad) Console soccer with dream teams.
FreeOrion (PC, Mac) Space empire game. Not for newbies to the genre.
Gasketball (iPad) Play with a friend. Setup trick basketball shots for your opponent to try.
Heroes of Order & Chaos (iPad) This is a multiplayer online game. If you like DOTA2, you’ll like this.
Jetpack Joyride (iPad) From the Fruit Ninja guys, this one reminds me of Commander Keen. (I’m old.)
League of Legends (PC) A real time strategy team role-playing game. Massive user base. www.leagueoflegends.com
Path of Exile (PC) This one’s a role playing game in the style of Diablo III,
but without the grind. www.pathofexile.com
Planetside 2 (PC) Impressive first person shooter. www.planetside2.com
Plants vs. Zombies 2 (iPad) Fun strategy defense game.
Star Wars The Old Republic (PC) No longer new, but still a great online game that lets you play light or darkside. www.swtor.com
Temple Run 2 (iPad) A well done rehash of a few old ‘sprinting’ games for the PC.
Wolfenstein 3D (Browser) The original first person shooter. For nostalgia sake. 3d.wolfenstein.com
World of Planes (PC) Like World of Tanks, but planes! www.worldofplanes.com
World of Tanks (PC) Team based multiplayer war with huge array of tanks and upgrades. This is a personal favourite.
World of Warcraft (PC, Mac) Wondering what all the fuss is about? Play the first 20 levels and find out. Beware. Highly addictive. www.battle.net/wow/en