The idea is to match numbers. Slide a blue '1' into a red '2' and they combine to become a single '3' card. Two 3s make a 6. Two 6s make a 12. And so on. The snag is that every move you make slides every non-blocked tile on the board as well. If you're fortunate or have planned ahead, this can result in several merges in one move; if not, you end up with a mess to clear up. And since after every turn a new card enters the board in a random spot on the edge you swiped from, planning is key.
It takes a few games for Threes! to properly click, but once it does, it never lets go. You'll be dying to see new cards (each is infused with a unique personality), and will soon spot how reaching higher-numbered cards boosts your score substantially. The free-to-play aspect is also generous: watch a video ad and you get three more games in the bank, which can be built up into a substantial reserve.
This gives the game a fighting chance against a raft of inferior Threes! clones (most of which have 1024 or 2048 in their names) that litter the App Store, and sucked life out of the paid version of Threes!. Our advice: stick with the original; you've no excuse now you can play for free. Craig Grannell
In this appealing fantasy-themed take on the tower defence game, you take the role of the mad architect who sets out to shred and perforate any would-be adventurer who dares to loot his dungeon's precious treasures. Waves of cartoonish heroes wander in, then meet a swift end by spinning blade, concealed spike or caged monster. You'll have to plan for several kinds of heroes, from tough knights to crafty thieves, and balance between planning ahead and spontaneous fire-fighting. Jason Tocci
FREE | Download Tiny Heroes
Triple Town is a 'match three' game with a look and feel all its own. You're building a town on a grid filled with bushes and trees. Grouping items into threes makes them transform: three trees become a hut, three huts become a house and so on. There are even enemies (bears), although these are actually rather adorable. They wander about, getting in the way, but if you trap them into a single square they, um, die, turning into grave stones. Inevitably, you can match three of these, making a church.
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