There is nobody in the world who doesn’t love flash games. They’re simple, addictive and most are also pretty kid friendly. They are the perfect alternatives to heavy games that despite their size and high cost provide little entertainment.
But there are just so many of them, it can be hard to choose one or even a handful. So we’ve collected over 20 + best flash games you may enjoy online, and put them in this list below. Have fun!
The moment people think gaming, they think about the tetris screen. The game is as old as the beginning on video gaming. Fun fact, the name is derived from the greek word for 4, tetra, since all pieces have four blocks. People still play the game in huge numbers to relive the nostalgia. A designer studio in Korea even designed dishes inspired by the game! You can even find a good number of spin offs, or find it as a mini-game in some of the most popular contemporary games.
Play Tetris for its simple concept, addictive action and thrill, and to revisit the 90s.
Much like Tetris, there’s not a lot I need to say about Snake for you to get the picture. It is the perfect challenge against one’s own mind; how do you cover the field and eat the items of the screen with progressively less space and mobility at your disposal? You’ll even find variants where the game actually speeds up with how long your snake becomes. Or, you could go back in time a little more and get a game or two with multiple players controlling one snake of their own, or play against the computer.
Snake is also going to be a major feature of the Nokia 3310 relaunch that will take place across several locations all through 2021. Also, check out the Slither game, which is just like snake but with cooler graphics and just as addictive.
To give you an idea of just how iconic space fighting games has been to the millennials, let me throw in a casual reminder about how frigging Iron Man brought up Galaga in the first Avengers movie! Space Invaders is only the pinnacle on the genre, owing much of it to having been among the first space fighting games to hit arcades as well as mobile phones and other consoles. You can probably find a lot of creative versions of the game online, be it on your smartphones or for PC downloads. And of course you can play a few online as well.
What makes Tic Tac Toe tick is that it is the first game most kids play. We had the backs on our notebooks filled with circles and crosses playing the game, much to the tired defeated exasperation of our teachers. Tic Tac Toe fits perfectly as a flash game; it is minimalistic in terms of animation and elaboration, and despite the simple structure, it is fun for everyone over 3.
A fairly recent entry to the market that is picking fans left, right and centre is Agar.io. The game has been around for barely 2 years, and in this short span it has catapulted to over 50 million downloads on the Play Store alone.
Agar.io works because once again, it is simple and has almost no rules to consider. You can roam the entire space as per your convenience, speeding up and slowing down by adjusting your distance, trying to catch as many dots as you can, without turning into a bigger user blip’s meal. Man, these io domain games are really amazing!
OK, so you probably have already played 2048. Despite how recent the game is, it is known to everyone who has a smartphone. Like Tic Tac Toe, its simplicity is the source of its charm. You think the game will be easy, but it turns out to be pretty challenging even if you are a low key math wiz. Even so, the app has had a massive following right since it released, almost being the next sudoku in terms of mind-sharpening games.
What you invariably fall in love with in Chain Reaction is the amount on calculation you need to put in to win a game that seems to be simple at the outset. But you’ll be surprised how unpredictable it can be to a novice. You could bet red will win by seeing a lot on red dots of the screen, and then suddenly blue will take over the screen if the player has calculated his moves well. Of course, there is a method to this apparent madness. Figuring it out takes time and a lot of conscious effort. But that’s not to say you can’t. And once you do, you can show off to your friends by defeating them one after another.
8. Mini Metro
Mini Metro is among the most popular flash games of the year. It is well organised, sharp cornered and really simple to get into. All you need to do is ferry shape-coded passenger dots to their shape-coded stations by drawing metro lines between the stations. As simple as it may seem, soon passengers begin piling up at one or the other station, and you keep on your seat’s edge hoping you level up soon so you can get more carriages and tunnels. It gets pretty intense for a logical puzzle, and I feel that is what makes it so addictive.
9. Mario Run
Ok, so you have Mario as usual, trying to grab a bit of gold and snack on a few mushrooms on the way to saving the princess. And then there’s the Temple Run idea where you don’t want to fall back too behind or you lose your life. It doesn’t really redefine Mario the plumber or how we see the two franchises, but it does bring the best of the two together, in the old familiar flash game animation. If you’re not one for Super Mario Run released by Nintendo for Android and iOS devices, this is a pretty decent substitute. Some might even like it better than the original.
Pokemon Tower Defense 2 is a game developed by a fan, but the setup is still pretty elaborate. It’s the same story; Ash gets up on his tenth birthday, gets a Pokemon from Professor Oak, and goes on an epic quest to catch’em all and become the best Pokemon Trainer. You register with an email account that saves your progress, and you can progress to catch all 151+ pokemon. And when you tire, there’s PTD 1 and 3 to entertain you as well. What’s not to love? Except the fact that the story mode is a bit tiring (I’ve already memorised the episodes, I don’t need all that exposition, you know?). But the gameplay more than makes up for it.
11. Super Mario 63
I’m pretty much a fan of the Mario franchise, as you can probably make out. Super Mario 63 is a fan-built game that works of flash, and it rocks. There’s some interesting stuff retained from the original concept, like complex moves, coins and the vaguely upbeat weather. Then, there’s new stuff like health bars, underwater diving and stomping to break stuff a la Daddy was a Thief. It can certainly be called one of the most addictive versions on mario available to play online.
cow cow cow Cow Cow COW COW COW COW COW COW! Moo.
That’s the easiest way to describe this game. Hover your cursor on the screen. The closer you get to the invisible cow, the louder and more excited the voice becomes. It’s not a game you want to play in front of guests or at work, unless you want the world to be rent with the shrieks of “COW”. Use your earphones. Find the Invisible Cow is the perfect way to pass lazy Sundays, or something to occupy yourself with while waiting for an email at work.
13. Frog Factions
It takes you time to get what Frog Factions is about. The apples falling is not adequately explained. But when you get to the game, it doesn’t really matter as long as you keep feeding your frog flies and mosquitoes. The first few tries are tiring, but once you have a power up (I recommend the balloon for the static electricity it gives your frog; you catch flies so much quicker), things speed up and you get why this game is so often recommended on internet forums. It’s just so easy to fall in love with.
14. Line Rider
Line Rider looks like a game meant for simpletons. But it’s really a game for simpletons interested in applied physics. It’s the same premise; draw a line and a bike riding stick figure will go over it. See how long you can keep it going this way. Miss a line and the rider plummets into limbo. Give a bad curve and the rider can crash into it like a wall. The game is really a classic, once available for PCs via floppy drives and now hosted online for one and all to enjoy.
15. Captain Forever
Building a ship and going on an adventure in space was our everyday play as kids. And now it is available to be lived on a web browser. It takes you a few tries to get a proper ship ready, but eventually, you figure out the guns from the bases, and you can proceed to routing your enemies. Captain Forever also has a neat remix. And lots of pew-pew lasers for you to put on your ships. The more ships you destroy, the more parts you can scavenge to improve your own ship. It’s pretty difficult to put down once you pick it up, really.
Another io game that everyone will love is Sharkz.io. The concept differs significantly from agar.io in that your fate is not sealed if you get bumped by another player. Each collision of your shark can gain you points or drain them for you depending upon where your shark’s mouth is. It’s like shark tank, but bloodier and more exciting. Eat as many fish from the school you’re surrounded by (the points move in this one), and then as you get bigger and deadlier, you can massacre other players by pursuit and actively eating their innards to become the king of the leaderboard.
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17. Alien Hominid
You’re an alien who crashes on the earth. The FBI is now after you, shooting bullets at you that you must dodge and agents you must kill to safely get from chapter to chapter and then finally to safety. The animation is certainly the kind you prefer in a flash game, plus it is available online. There are versions for gaming consoles and PCs too which can be purchased for a price, but be sure to verify that your PC and OS will be able to run the game; Alien Hominid came out in 2004, you know. It was before Obama was president!
18. Super Meat Boy
On all the things you could have found cute, who knew a block on meat would top the list one day? Super Meat Boy has his girlfriend kidnapped by a jealous vampire, and must now go through perilous terrain full on pointy cutters, fire pits and Mario-like holes in the ground to reach his lady love to finally rescue her. There is a slight gore element with all the blood and splatter you leave behind when your character moves or gets killed, but I don’t think it isn’t any less kid-friendly. Easily among the top recommendations we have for you in this list.
Everyone loves tower defense games. They’re fun, easy to understand and addictive like crack. Desktop tower defense spares you the complex geopolitics that developers and storyboarders of games these days feel compelled to include in their creations. The background is a simple image on someone’s work desk (and hence puns on the word “Desktop”), and by arranging the many towers you get and effectively managing your costs and resources, you have to stave off as many invaders as possible to make it to the first page of the leaderboard. Desktop Tower Defense is ideal to play when you’re having a slow day at work or when you want to kill time of sundays.
A cutesy little experimental worm that shoots out puke from its mouth and uses it to press buttons and solve mazes; what’s not to love? Spewer is a classic in terms of entertainment. The animation is very well done, the controls are unique but easy, and the levels are most definitely challenging to the mind. How creatively you use your vomit to complete levels in the game, and how much you save from it both help you win the game and beat the leaderboards. This one is another we’d recommend to the lay gamer. Spewer is everything a good flash game ought to be; challenging, funny and addictive. There is quite some adrenaline rush to experience as you jet-blast your way through levels using your puke.
Arkanoid follows a pretty standard bat and ball concept where you release a ball to break bricks and score power ups and points, advancing to the next level once the screen is cleared of all bricks. The story is stock-ish but the game nevertheless entertains. Playing it on the PC is a special treat, letting you relive moments every 90s kid is always nostalgic about. If only today’s games could be this simple in appeal.
As gaming has progressed, most of these simple online flash games have been incorporated as side missions to play within mainstream games. It makes sense since you can only run around in virtual cities for so long; these little games are a welcome splutter of entertainment. But I feel it doesn’t really afford them their due space.
It’s good to have these entertainers as independent games available across platforms, for the coming generation to enjoy and older gamers to reminisce. There is of course no universally accepted list; everyone has their own preferences. Which ones are yours?