Archive for the ‘Windows Games’ Category

Printable Paper Dolls

Monday, June 13th, 2011

runs on Linuxruns on Macruns on Windows
screenshot of Printable Paper Dolls

Have you ever had the experience of buying some fancy new gift for a kid and finding out that they're more interested in the package than the item itself? In spite of how great we think this spiffy new fancy do-dad is, sometimes simpler is better and more interesting.

Paper Dolls have been around forever. They're easy to use, very portable, and there are no batteries required. If you're industrious, you can make them yourself, but there is also help available out there, at places like Printable Paper Dolls. These folks have created several dozen different paper doll designs, with all kinds of interesting clothing and accessories. Browse their site to check out boy paper dolls and girl paper dolls, ballerina paper dolls and princess paper dolls, as well as paper dolls of several other types and descriptions. Many of them are the same size, so it's easy to mix and match outfits between different dolls. And they're all available to download for free.

Printable Paper Dolls are available as PDF files, so you will need a copy of Adobe Reader or another app that can print PDF files.

Download Printable Paper Dolls

Create and solve your own crossword puzzles

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

runs on Windows
screenshot of Crossword Creator

Crossword puzzles are an interesting thing. They are used by little kids in school to drill on spelling words, but they've also got their industrial-strength devotees—people who actually know who Will Shortz is and delight in doing the Times' Sunday puzzle in ink. But what about taking it to the next level? Have you ever thought about creating your own puzzles?

Crossword Creator might be the tool to use if you decide to go in this direction. You can use built-in word- and clue lists, or create your own. Heck, you might create for first free-software-blogging-centric crossword puzzle out there! Some of the lists that come with this app include words in English, Spanish, and German, as well as a list of SAT clues and answers—getting into college was never so much fun. You can print out your puzzles, or solve them on your computer.

A free download, Crossword Creator is a Windows application.

Download Crossword Creator

Jeopardy-like game for classroom use

Friday, August 28th, 2009

runs on Windows
screenshot of Stu's Double Jeopardy

I'll take "Potent Potables" for $200, Alex.

If you understand that cryptic remark, then you may be a candidate for Stu's Double Jeopardy. It's a free downloadable adaptation of the popular TV game show for use in educational settings. While there is no affiliation between the publishers and the Jeopardy folks, the game is quite similar. Choose from different categories, and given the answers, contestants come up with the questions. You can play as individuals, or as teams—up to six at a time.

Teachers can create their own question files, choosing categories and questions that serve to reinforce classroom learning, or general knowledge areas. You can get started by downloading selections from a list of prefab questions as well. There are "Daily Doubles" that allow players to wager points on upcoming questions. Incorporate MP3 files to add sound to your questions. If you don't have time for a full game, you can create scaled-down versions that include only ten or twenty questions instead of the normal 30.

Stu's Double Jeopardy is a Windows application.

Download Stu's Double Jeopardy

Run your own country with NationStates

Sunday, June 14th, 2009

runs as Online Serviceruns on Linuxruns on Macruns on Windows
screenshot of NationStates

We all suffer from delusions of grandeur at one time or another. Whether it's that crazy thing your boss did at work or the boo-boo your partner made at home, we all know how to do it better. And those guys in the State House and Washington? Don't get me started. So if you think you can do better, why not give it a shot? No, we don't mean that you should run for political office, or execute a coup d'état. How about playing a game instead?

NationStates will let you create the country of your choosing. Whether it's a workers' paradise or a totalitarian police state, it's all up to you. Pick your country's name and flag, define its style of government—ranging from Sensible to Psychotic—you even get to define the unit of currency and national animal. You'll determine the quality of life for your citizens, and you will interact with other nations—for good or for bad—just like real countries in the real world.

NationStates is provided as a free online service. You should be able to play it on most systems that have a recent web browser that allows JavaScript and accepts cookies.

Download NationStates

Satisfy your need for speed with TORCS

Sunday, May 17th, 2009

runs on Linuxruns on Macruns on Windows
screenshot of TORCS

If you've always wanted to drive a race car like a bat out of you-know-where, but are prone to getting car sick, you could have a problem. For you or anybody else with a need for speed but the inability to follow through—whether because of that motion sickness problem or the lack of a major corporate sponsor for your racing team—a racing simulator may be your best friend. TORCS may be just what the doctor—or the mechanic—ordered.

The Open Racing Car Simulator is an open source multi-platform racing simulation. Choose from dozens of different cars, tracks, and opponents. You don't need any special hardware, since you can drive using your keyboard or mouse, as well as a joystick or steering wheel. It turns out that there's a pretty big user community out there as well: you can grab additional cars and tracks from other websites to add to the official offerings.

TORCS is available for Linux, Mac (OS X 10.3.9 ), and Windows platforms.

Download TORCS

Free playing cards

Sunday, April 5th, 2009

runs on Linuxruns on Macruns on Windows
screenshot of SVG-cards

Have you ever downloaded a deck of cards? Neither have we, but that's all about to change. With SVG-cards, you can do just that. Well, almost at least.

SVG-cards is a huge image that, when you print it out and chop it up, will give you a deck of cards. As the name suggests, this image is in SVG—scalable vector graphics—format. Unlike bitmapped image files, SVG are vector graphics. This means that you can resize them without making them all nasty looking, with jagged pixelation and all. It includes the faces of all the cards of a standard deck of 52 playing cards, as well as a couple of Jokers, and a design for the back as well.

You can choose to print them out as they come onto paper or card stock, or you might scale them down, or up, to make them into a size that works better for you. If you like the designs, you can also do more exotic things like put them on T-shirts as well.

SVG-cards are free to download.

Download SVG-cards

Create your own world with Crayon Physics

Thursday, March 13th, 2008

screenshot of Crayon Physics

Have you ever read the children's book Harold and the Purple Crayon? Armed with only a simple crayon, Harold creates a whole new world, where what he draws comes to life. You can have a similar experience with Crayon Physics.

With Crayon Physics, you create a world on your system that responds to forces as real objects do. Draw a box on the screen, and it "falls" toward the bottom of the screen, as if pulled by gravity. You can have free-falling objects like this, or by inserting pivot points, you can create levers that redirect forces in directions you want them to go. As a game, you move a ball around on screen, allowing it to collect stars. Create ramps, drop things to push them along, the sky's the limit of what you can do to manipulate your new world here. You'll probably have best results with a stylus, although you can still draw things with your mouse.

There is a deluxe version in the works (watch the video to see what's in store) that hasn't dropped yet.

Crayon Physics is a Windows application and requires Win98 or later.

Download Crayon Physics

Spheres of Chaos: the psychedelic space shooter

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

screenshot of Spheres of Chaos

You don't have to spend time in Roswell to have to deal with aliens. Just fire up Spheres of Chaos, and you'll have more extraterrestrial enemies than you know what to do with, as well as a light show that just won't quit.

As you work through the various levels of play, you will encounter progressively more enemies that you have to eradicate before you can progress to the next level. Keep an eye out for black holes that can attract or repel you, and if you don't complete a given level soon enough, the bad guys will come looking for you.

Even on lower-end systems, the graphics are impressive. With that many bright colors and patterns, you'll wonder whether somebody spiked your Gatorade.

Spheres of Chaos works as a single-player game, or supports up to eight players at a time in multi-player mode. It's a free download, and it's available for Windows and Linux systems

Download Spheres of Chaos

Make the world safe again with Alien Arena

Saturday, November 24th, 2007

screenshot of Alien Arena

Did you ever think that maybe there just weren't enough dead aliens out there? Did you want to do something about it? Alien Arena may be right up your alley.

A first person shooter in the tradition of Quake III and Unreal Tournament, you'll be up to your ankles in blood-n-guts in no time. You can run Alien Arena in single player mode, server mode for playing against others, or even start up your own dedicated server.

There are several different game modes here, including Death Match, Capture the Flag, and others. The carnage is configurable, so you can have just the experience you're looking for. With the ability to reset everything, you can't break things in the configuration screen.

The lead developer claims that the game has been downloaded over half a million times in the last couple of years, so there's a big installed base out there. There is a large online game forum so whether its a configuration issue, or just a chance to gloat over your accomplishments, there's a big group of folks out there eager to hear what you have to say.

Alien Arena is a 3-D game, so you'll want to make sure your system has the horsepower required.

Alien Arena is available for both Linux and Windows systems.

Download Alien Arena

TAGAP: The Apocalyptic Game About Penguins

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

screenshot of TAGAP

Did you ever have one of THOSE days? You know, you get up, brush your teeth, find that the world has been overrun by mutant penguins? I hate it when that happens.

TAGAP is The Apocalyptic Game About Penguins. As the name suggests, you're looking at the end of life as we know it through the eyes of a flock of penguins who have been used in vile experiments by Dr. Glowenko. Pablo (the good guy) fights against Pedro (the bad guy) and a host of zombie penguins, killer penguins, robot penguins, and more. Using the weapons available to you, including an arsenal of guns, featuring shotguns, machine guns, flame throwers, rocket launchers, and a disintegrator, and even chemical warfare, in the form of anti-penguin mind-altering drugs, you defeat the enemy, while collecting goodies for doing well. Penguins on steroids? Yeah, that's in there too.

Play TAGAP under Windows XP or Vista. No tuxedo required.

Download TAGAP