Insaniquarium! Deluxe

Arcade  / Action Game                              harder                                   11 MB
Untimed Option                      PC                              Walkthrough not needed

Premise:  You try to keep your fish alive by feeding them; at the same time you are gathering the coins that float down from them so you can buy more fish, upgrade the fish food, and upgrade the weapon you use to shoot the alien water creatures that occasionally appear and try to eat your fish.

Hints:  Feed each fish as soon as it changes color (i.e. when a guppy turns purple) or it will die.  (When they all die, you lose the game.) ~ You can feed all of them at once by holding your mouse button down. ~ Eggs are worth their high price, for they contain very useful sea creatures, i.e. a snail that will help you catch those falling coins, a clam that will make precious pearls for you to take, and a swordfish that will help you fight the aliens. ~ Hold off on buying a carnivore because you don’t have any red meat and I have no idea what you can feed him.  (Mine died of starvation.)

My Review:  Because it’s an Arcade game, you will be moving your mouse constantly.  Fans of the genre find this stimulating and satisfying; I find it too stimulating (in other words, exhausting).  But it’s just a matter of taste, and this game is very popular.

My Recommendation:  This game is for players with a fast mouse hand, and who won’t take it hard when their fish die.  I found the game to be frustrating, but so many people love this game that I feel that I should suggest you try it, if it sounds appealing.

You can try it for free, here:   Insaniquarium! Deluxe


Island Tribe

Civilization-Building Game                        easier                                   66 MB
Untimed Option                              PC                      Walkthrough not needed

Premise:  You’re an islander who is helping your brethren escape the lava of an erupting volcano which has created so much steam that no one can find their way to safety.  Repairing the broken idol statues will magically clear the fog and enable you to make it to the next village, but much must be done before the repairs can be accomplished because the paths are strewn with debris.

Hints:  The islanders can’t make more of what you need until you’ve taken what they’ve made so far, so keep taking what they’ve made for you until you have all you’ll need. ~ If you care about points (not necessary to complete the game) and you’re running out of time, concentrate totally on your remaining goals, ignoring all other problems — even burning buildings — because, after all, you’re abandoning the island, which the volcano is destroying.

More Hints:  When an islander has stopped working, or when it says they ‘use’ 4 buckets of water, what they mean is that they ‘need’ 4 buckets of water, so click on them to deliver it. ~ Focus on your goals. You don’t need to collect more of the items than you’ll actually use, so for instance if you’ve already cleared away all the wasps and bears, don’t gather more honey, and stop maintaining the apiary. ~ Upgrade the sawmill first (by clicking on it), then the well (you need lots of water because lightning keeps setting fires), and give them both as many upgrades (stars) as possible. ~ Upgrade your camp when you have enough tasks for 2 workers, and upgrade other buildings when you need more of their product than they are able to produce. ~ Collect diamonds.

My Review:  This very cute and fun game is the perfect time management game for new players. It is easier than most other time management games, and therefore it’s a good introduction to the category.  The fact that it’s not necessary to amass points or awards in order to complete the game enables you to take your time and finish each round even when the timer has run out.  I recommend playing some rounds at least once without hurrying because this game has so many details — like the colorful flowers, the bunnies and frogs and hippos, the frolicking penguins, and the various birds flying overhead — all of which you might miss out on when you‘re concentrating on beating the clock.

My Recommendation:  I really like this game. It is beautifully illustrated, very pleasant to play, and I recommend it for everyone.

You can try it for free, here: Island Tribe