Minigames taking over the virtual world

By U-Wire

By Johnathan Kroncke

FULLERTON, Calif. – What kind of world are we living in where “UNO” is the No. 1 downloaded game?

That’s right, minigames are taking over America. Gamers all over have given their hearts and minds to the virtual world of puzzles and cards, creating a new demand for an old style of gaming.

It seems like minigames can be found everywhere online these days, from MSN to Yahoo.

One of the keys to the resurgence of minigames in recent years is their accessibility. These easy-to-find games are enjoyed by gamers, but also by those simply looking for a little mental stimulation.

Card games are nothing more than electronic versions of the favorites that many players are already familiar with, freeing them from having to learn any complicated new rules or objectives.

Puzzle games, on the other hand, are often based around the same idea with only minor variations. They rely on visual spatial skills and are very easy to learn, giving players that dose of competitive silliness everyone needs in order to survive.

“Bejeweled,” for example, is a popular hypnotic puzzler offered free to play on Web sites like MSN and Yahoo.

The idea is to switch the positions of adjacent jewels in order to line up matching colors and score points.

Xbox, perhaps the current front-runner of the minigame genre, has garnered significant attention from the gaming community due to its online arena where minigames can be downloaded.

Since its inception, Xbox Live Arcade has become a huge hit with gamers flocking to spend their money on old-school games such as “Contra” and “Galaga” as well as classic minigames.

“Hexic HD,” similar to “Bejeweled,” comes pre-installed on the hard drive of every premium Xbox 360 and offers a great way to pass the time, combining simple rules and HD graphics.

Of course, the inclusion of this engaging puzzler is no coincidence. Game publishers have quickly picked up on the desires of their public and have been more than happy to oblige with new releases of old favorites.

The granddaddy of all puzzle games, the Russian sensation “Tetris,” has spawned a new version for a new generation titled “Tetris Evolution,” released last month for the Xbox 360.

Essentially, the game itself has not changed much in 20 years, but the main attraction of the new breed is its online capabilities, including scoreboards and the potential to snag up to four players to duke it out for polygon glory.

What kind of world are we living in where “UNO” is the No. 1 downloaded game?

That’s right, minigames are taking over America. Gamers all over have given their hearts and minds to the virtual world of puzzles and cards, creating a new demand for an old style of gaming.

It seems like minigames can be found everywhere online these days, from MSN to Yahoo.

One of the keys to the resurgence of minigames in recent years is their accessibility. These easy-to-find games are enjoyed by gamers, but also by those simply looking for a little mental stimulation.

Card games are nothing more than electronic versions of the favorites that many players are already familiar with, freeing them from having to learn any complicated new rules or objectives.

Puzzle games, on the other hand, are often based around the same idea with only minor variations. They rely on visual spatial skills and are very easy to learn, giving players that dose of competitive silliness everyone needs in order to survive.

“Bejeweled,” for example, is a popular hypnotic puzzler offered free to play on Web sites like MSN and Yahoo.

The idea is to switch the positions of adjacent jewels in order to line up matching colors and score points.

Xbox, perhaps the current front-runner of the minigame genre, has garnered significant attention from the gaming community due to its online arena where minigames can be downloaded.

Since its inception, Xbox Live Arcade has become a huge hit with gamers flocking to spend their money on old-school games such as “Contra” and “Galaga” as well as classic minigames.

“Hexic HD,” similar to “Bejeweled,” comes pre-installed on the hard drive of every premium Xbox 360 and offers a great way to pass the time, combining simple rules and HD graphics.

Of course, the inclusion of this engaging puzzler is no coincidence. Game publishers have quickly picked up on the desires of their public and have been more than happy to oblige with new releases of old favorites.

The granddaddy of all puzzle games, the Russian sensation “Tetris,” has spawned a new version for a new generation titled “Tetris Evolution,” released last month for the Xbox 360.

Essentially, the game itself has not changed much in 20 years, but the main attraction of the new breed is its online capabilities, including scoreboards and the potential to snag up to four players to duke it out for polygon glory.