Mar 04, 2013 02:02 PM EST | By Michael Epstein email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Multiple outlets are reporting that Apple is working on a smartwatch, which might be in stores by the end of the year. Between the Pebble smartphone, the "iWatch" and Google Glass, wearable computers seem to be the next wave of personal technology, which leaves us with one question:
"What kind of games can you play on a watch?"
After giving it a lot of thought, we've come up with a few games that would be perfect to play when you don't have the time or inclination to break out your smartphone:
1. "Tiny Tower"
Some might argue that "Tiny Tower," Nimblebit's incredibly addictive management sim, isn't really a game. Players need to continually stock and order supplies to keep the stores in their tower generating revenue: Like many free-to-play games, each of those actions takes a certain amount of time. Ideally players are frequently checking to keep it running efficiently. The primary focus of a device like the iWatch is to check and manage notifications, which makes it the perfect platform for a game like "Tiny Tower," which is essentially a massive notification-generator.
Any game that effectively runs on a screen that fits on a player's wrist will have to be simple. There's no room for varied multi-touch movements the player has to stick their finger over a large portion screen to interact with it. "Tetris" on an iWatch could be a complete game-changer. Players would need to developer a whole new set of skills based around the limitations of a small touchscreen as well as an excellent memory so they could cover the screen frequently without losing track of the action.
3. "Doodle Jump"
Developing a game for something like the iWatch means going back to basics, and there's nothing more basic than "Doodle Jump." The infinite-jumper would require almost no action when played on the wrist: just tilt left or right. At the same time, accelerometer-based games on a wearable device would also require an incredibly steady hand and complete focus: One rogue movement and your doodler's toast.
"CodeRunner," a game location-based social game that turned everyday life into a secret spy mission, asked players to find and check-in at "dead drops," left by other players, which granted access to information related to your story as a covert agent.
Location-based games never quite made it on the iPhone, but could be more appealing to players when the platform didn't require players to stop and pull something out of their pockets. I know that sounds incredibly lazy, but part of making games, especially mobile and/or social games, is finding a way to get players to incorporate it into their eveyday lives: The iWatch dramatically drops "CodeRunner's" barrier of entry. Plus, getting a text about picking up a "dead drop" on your computer-watch sounds like something out of "Blade Runner."
5. "Super Hexagon"
How many games do you know and like that only take a few seconds to play? Super Hexagon's intense leads to incredibly short play sessions, which would be perfect for a device designed to be glanced at for moments at a time. Like "Doodle Jump," "Super Hexagon" is an accelerometer-based touch-based game on iOS. On PC, however, the game is played using a keyboard instead. Though it's unclear whether the iWatch will feature any constructed buttons, those might be better for controlling the game precisely.
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