The best Flash games

Flash games may be the epitome of wasting time, but there’s no denying their appeal when you have five minutes to spare and a thirst for something more than a cursory glance at Twitter or Facebook. (And is it really a waste of time if you’re having fun?) They’ve come […]

Flash games may be the epitome of wasting time, but there’s no denying their appeal when you have five minutes to spare and a thirst for something more than a cursory glance at Twitter or Facebook. (And is it really a waste of time if you’re having fun?) They’ve come a long way from their humble, vector-based beginnings, finding a home on websites like Newgrounds, Kongregate, and Addicting Games, among other popular sites, while becoming increasingly more complex and fully-featured.

Alien Hominid. This run and gun shooter originally came to Newgrounds in 2002 and exploded in popularity shortly thereafter. Its developer, The Behemoth, went on to create the beloved Castle Crashers, which garnered great success as well, but Alien Hominid is how the studio got its start.” data-reactid=”40″>Starting things off is one of the quintessential flash games, Alien Hominid. This run and gun shooter originally came to Newgrounds in 2002 and exploded in popularity shortly thereafter. Its developer, The Behemoth, went on to create the beloved Castle Crashers, which garnered great success as well, but Alien Hominid is how the studio got its start.

Line Rider. Does anyone else have memories of booting this up at school in the computer lab? It’s a classic, for sure, but what makes it so special? Well, the main thing is that it’s so simple, and it leans into something that will probably always be funny: Slapstick comedy. Creating a huge, complicated track that sends your character flopping across it is still funny, and the tools used to create such tracks are easy and intuitive to use.” data-reactid=”59″>Ah, good old Line Rider. Does anyone else have memories of booting this up at school in the computer lab? It’s a classic, for sure, but what makes it so special? Well, the main thing is that it’s so simple, and it leans into something that will probably always be funny: Slapstick comedy. Creating a huge, complicated track that sends your character flopping across it is still funny, and the tools used to create such tracks are easy and intuitive to use.

Jacksmith

Jacksmith is a prime example. The game’s initial premise seems fairly simple, requiring players to take on the role of a small-town blacksmith hellbent on arming his band of pig warriors with the finest weapons ever assembled. Once the weapons are crafted using a process of click-reliant minigames such as pouring bronze, hammering edges, and constructing hilts, players can then oversee several combatants in the field as they collect blueprints, gems, and other resources enemies drop to build more refined weapons.” data-reactid=”86″>First impressions can be deceiving and Jacksmith is a prime example. The game’s initial premise seems fairly simple, requiring players to take on the role of a small-town blacksmith hellbent on arming his band of pig warriors with the finest weapons ever assembled. Once the weapons are crafted using a process of click-reliant minigames such as pouring bronze, hammering edges, and constructing hilts, players can then oversee several combatants in the field as they collect blueprints, gems, and other resources enemies drop to build more refined weapons.

Doom

Kongregate, the popular online games client once owned by GameStop.” data-reactid=”106″>Today, Doom may not look so hot, but it’s an interesting game to revisit due to its enormous impact on the industry. It’s also still quite fun, a testament to how well-made it was in 1993. You can find Doom on many different sites on the web, but our favorite method is through Kongregate, the popular online games client once owned by GameStop.

MotherLoad

MotherLoad into the wee hours of the night was basically a rite of passage if you grew up in the early 2000s. It’s reminiscent of old-school classics like Dig Dug and Boulder Dash, pitting players in a quest for a fabled, precious bounty of rare ore buried deep in the dark recesses under the surface of Mars. Players control a robotic mining pod, tunneling their way through the earth using the down, left, and right arrow keys, and flying upward to refuel their machine at the nearest depot.” data-reactid=”128″>Avoiding chemistry homework and playing MotherLoad into the wee hours of the night was basically a rite of passage if you grew up in the early 2000s. It’s reminiscent of old-school classics like Dig Dug and Boulder Dash, pitting players in a quest for a fabled, precious bounty of rare ore buried deep in the dark recesses under the surface of Mars. Players control a robotic mining pod, tunneling their way through the earth using the down, left, and right arrow keys, and flying upward to refuel their machine at the nearest depot.

You can use in-game resources to purchase additional pod upgrades, such as an expanded fuel tank and a more advanced drill, while bonus items like the plastic explosives and Quantum Teleporter present welcome gameplay mechanics designed to interrupt what would be the stagnant humdrum of merely moving around the screen. It certainly won’t be the most inventive or prettiest title to grace your monitor, but it’s a Flash classic, and the unbridled sense of pleasure you’ll receive upon finding mineable gold is well worth the hours of gameplay.

Super Mario 63

Super Mario 63, a fan-made platformer in the Super Mario vein, players pummel their way through the reimagined, 2D world of Super Mario 64. The level variation is outstanding, encapsulating everything from high peaks to arid deserts. Players can sprint, triple jump, and ground pound their way to reclaim the fabled Shine Sprites and rescue the iconic Princess Peach.” data-reactid=”151″>With Super Mario 63, a fan-made platformer in the Super Mario vein, players pummel their way through the reimagined, 2D world of Super Mario 64. The level variation is outstanding, encapsulating everything from high peaks to arid deserts. Players can sprint, triple jump, and ground pound their way to reclaim the fabled Shine Sprites and rescue the iconic Princess Peach.

Decision 2: New City

Decision 2: New City offers more than a few similarities. Like the original title, players are thrust into a zombie-ravaged metropolis and armed to the teeth with an arsenal of weapons (i.e. an Enfield, M-16, colt, bazooka) to combat the impending, walking infection. It’s a top-down shooter that relies on the arrow keys and a mouse for navigating and shooting within the city. Once started, players work to capture city suburbs through a series of recon and extermination missions.” data-reactid=”174″>As the direct followup to Decision, Decision 2: New City offers more than a few similarities. Like the original title, players are thrust into a zombie-ravaged metropolis and armed to the teeth with an arsenal of weapons (i.e. an Enfield, M-16, colt, bazooka) to combat the impending, walking infection. It’s a top-down shooter that relies on the arrow keys and a mouse for navigating and shooting within the city. Once started, players work to capture city suburbs through a series of recon and extermination missions.

Rogue Soul

Rogue Soul can attest to that. The aptly-titled platformer throws players in the role of a hooded ninja named Rogue Soul, an able miscreant who prides himself in being the city’s finest and most allusive thief. However, when rival bandit Borin Hood garners all the praise (and a 5,000-soulon reward), Rogue Soul takes it upon himself to reclaim his title and wreak havoc on the Aladdin-esque landscape through a series of scrolling levels.” data-reactid=”197″>A game doesn’t need to be groundbreaking to offer high levels of entertainment and Soul Game Studios’ Rogue Soul can attest to that. The aptly-titled platformer throws players in the role of a hooded ninja named Rogue Soul, an able miscreant who prides himself in being the city’s finest and most allusive thief. However, when rival bandit Borin Hood garners all the praise (and a 5,000-soulon reward), Rogue Soul takes it upon himself to reclaim his title and wreak havoc on the Aladdin-esque landscape through a series of scrolling levels.

Realm of the Mad God

Realm of the Mad God is an online MMORPG that simultaneously tackles elements of a traditional shooter, pitting players from all walks of life against one another in a class-driven crusade against the minions of dark lord Oryx. The old-school map is expansive, overflowing with a swarm of dangerous enemies and diverse environments.” data-reactid=”220″>Realm of the Mad God is an online MMORPG that simultaneously tackles elements of a traditional shooter, pitting players from all walks of life against one another in a class-driven crusade against the minions of dark lord Oryx. The old-school map is expansive, overflowing with a swarm of dangerous enemies and diverse environments.

Although the title fancies itself more of an open-world shooter than RPG, players can still level up and gather upgradeable loot that’s swappable at the local bazaar. They can also choose from one of 14 available classes (wizard, huntress, mystic, assassin, etc.). It’s arcade-style controls and pure bullet hell can make the title chaotic at times, as does each server’s 85-player capacity. Yet it’s also deceptively rich considering the genre-bending elements and the title’s strong emphasis on a single life.

Super House of Dead Ninjas

Super House of Dead Ninjas” data-reactid=”239″>

Super House of Dead Ninjas

Super House of Dead Ninjas is unorthodox, but it’s far more brutal than most of the recommendations on our list. It’s not so much about stealth and sneaking as it basic hack-and-slash gameplay, ushering players to frantically descend a randomized 350-level tower as the Crimson Ninja, clad in an arsenal of stereotypical ninja weaponry designed to obliterate the onslaught of enemies.” data-reactid=”243″>Adult Swim is undoubtedly at the forefront when it comes to risque and borderline-bizarre cable content. That’s not to say the network’s Super House of Dead Ninjas is unorthodox, but it’s far more brutal than most of the recommendations on our list. It’s not so much about stealth and sneaking as it basic hack-and-slash gameplay, ushering players to frantically descend a randomized 350-level tower as the Crimson Ninja, clad in an arsenal of stereotypical ninja weaponry designed to obliterate the onslaught of enemies.

You’re constantly at the mercy of two countdown timers, one signaling the appearance of the Grim Reaper and the other encapsulating your rage progress, as well the game’s staggered boss battles and the final showdown against the hellish demon housed in the tower’s basement. The action is blazing fast, the learning curb and game length fairly modest, yet the challenge and sheer amount of unlockable content belie all the game’s other memorable facets. The virtual scan lines and the fact no two towers are ever the same is only a bonus.

Frog Fractions

Frog Fractions starts out easy enough with a frog, some fruit, and a slew of pop-up fractions. The game’s initial goal is to protect the swarms of butterflies, mosquitos, and other insects from devouring the fruit with your elastic tongue, but it quickly becomes something more momentous. Players find themselves purchasing a bevy of notable upgrades within minutes, such as a static tongue and more resilient fruit.” data-reactid=”266″>Jim Crawford’s Frog Fractions starts out easy enough with a frog, some fruit, and a slew of pop-up fractions. The game’s initial goal is to protect the swarms of butterflies, mosquitos, and other insects from devouring the fruit with your elastic tongue, but it quickly becomes something more momentous. Players find themselves purchasing a bevy of notable upgrades within minutes, such as a static tongue and more resilient fruit.

Age of War

Age of War begins in the age of cavemen and dinosaurs with an arsenal of clubs and comets on command, it soon segues into medieval times, the modern era, and eventually into a world characterized by flying tanks and automatic artillery guns. However, despite the cosmetic changes and slight gameplay tweaks accompanying each era, the game maintains its simplistic design.” data-reactid=”289″>Although Age of War begins in the age of cavemen and dinosaurs with an arsenal of clubs and comets on command, it soon segues into medieval times, the modern era, and eventually into a world characterized by flying tanks and automatic artillery guns. However, despite the cosmetic changes and slight gameplay tweaks accompanying each era, the game maintains its simplistic design.

The primary goal of the game relies on the player’s ability to protect their own base, as well as destroy their opponents, allowing players to build a variety of melee and ranged troops in addition to an assortment of prehistoric and modern turrets. As expected, money and experience are gained through combat and the elimination of enemy forces, all of which automatically proceed once you select the appropriate units. The AI is highly adept, essentially upgrading and advancing at the same rate regardless of the chosen difficulty, but there’s no shame keeping things on the easy side until you perfect your strategy. Just don’t let time pass you by.

Kingdom Rush Frontiers

Kingdom Rush Frontiers” data-reactid=”308″>

Kingdom Rush Frontiers

Kingdom Rush Frontiers requires players to build a multitude of fortified towers to fend off a never-ending barrage of maniacal dragons, man-eating plants, and demonic heathens hell-bent on ransacking your beloved kingdom.” data-reactid=”312″>It would be a gross understatement to say the tower-defense field is anything but saturated, however, the original Kingdom Rush was one of the best Like it’s tower-based brethren and predecessor, Kingdom Rush Frontiers requires players to build a multitude of fortified towers to fend off a never-ending barrage of maniacal dragons, man-eating plants, and demonic heathens hell-bent on ransacking your beloved kingdom.

Warfare 1917

Warfare 1917 opts for an earlier date — 1917 to be precise — and focuses its two-part campaign on British and German hostilities during the trench-torn skirmishes of WWI. It’s a straightforward strategy game, boasting nearly 30,000 votes on Amorgames.com. It requires players to use infantry, armor, and fire support to gain a strategic foothold from which to overthrow the enemy.” data-reactid=”335″>It’s safe to say World War II and modern combat dominate the field when it comes to today’s war-time simulation games. However, Warfare 1917 opts for an earlier date — 1917 to be precise — and focuses its two-part campaign on British and German hostilities during the trench-torn skirmishes of WWI. It’s a straightforward strategy game, boasting nearly 30,000 votes on Amorgames.com. It requires players to use infantry, armor, and fire support to gain a strategic foothold from which to overthrow the enemy.

Bubble Spinner 2 is like a rotating, hexagonal Bust-a-Move sans the iconic cute dinosaurs. With Bubble Spinner 2, players take control of simple pointer located at the top of the screen and launching a series of colored bubbles at a larger group of bubbles rotating in the center. Bubbles detach and clear when the launched bubble comes in contact with some that are already attached to one or more of the same color. This often starts a chain reaction, clearing all nearby bubbles and earning you points.” data-reactid=”358″>In many ways, Bubble Spinner 2 is like a rotating, hexagonal Bust-a-Move sans the iconic cute dinosaurs. With Bubble Spinner 2, players take control of simple pointer located at the top of the screen and launching a series of colored bubbles at a larger group of bubbles rotating in the center. Bubbles detach and clear when the launched bubble comes in contact with some that are already attached to one or more of the same color. This often starts a chain reaction, clearing all nearby bubbles and earning you points.

Boxhead 2Play

Boxhead 2Play is a game of kill or be killed. Clad in a boxy body akin to Minecraft, players traverse a sparse, obstacle-laden map as one of four characters (Bamboo, Bon, Bind, and Bert), and obtain an arsenal of upgradeable weaponry ranging from the commonplace pistol and grenade to the scattered shotgun and railgun. Whether you’re playing solo or local co-op with a friend, the goal of the game remains to fend off hordes of virus-stricken citizens as long as possible, all the while dodging the Devil’s fireballs and nearby exploding boxes.” data-reactid=”381″>Like nearly any zombie title ever created, Boxhead 2Play is a game of kill or be killed. Clad in a boxy body akin to Minecraft, players traverse a sparse, obstacle-laden map as one of four characters (Bamboo, Bon, Bind, and Bert), and obtain an arsenal of upgradeable weaponry ranging from the commonplace pistol and grenade to the scattered shotgun and railgun. Whether you’re playing solo or local co-op with a friend, the goal of the game remains to fend off hordes of virus-stricken citizens as long as possible, all the while dodging the Devil’s fireballs and nearby exploding boxes.

Players can control their character — each of which is nearly identical aside from their backstory and visual appearance— using the standard arrow keys or the W, A, S, and D buttons to move, and the spacebar to shoot. Though it begins slow, with only a handful zombies scuttling through the gates, players will soon find themselves overrun with more than they can handle. Fortunately, you can always square off in a head-to-head deathmatch.

Dolphin Olympics 2

Dolphin Olympics 2 may not have a direct link with the Sega Genesis’ Ecco the Dolphin, but we can’t help but notice more than a few similarities between the two. Like it’s predecessor and the aforementioned Genesis game, Dolphin Olympics 2 is a Flash title rooted in mammal acrobatics. The game thrusts players into the role of an everyday dolphin, providing them with two minutes to leap out of the water and perform a few simple trick combinations in exchange for points.” data-reactid=”404″>Dolphin Olympics 2 may not have a direct link with the Sega Genesis’ Ecco the Dolphin, but we can’t help but notice more than a few similarities between the two. Like it’s predecessor and the aforementioned Genesis game, Dolphin Olympics 2 is a Flash title rooted in mammal acrobatics. The game thrusts players into the role of an everyday dolphin, providing them with two minutes to leap out of the water and perform a few simple trick combinations in exchange for points.

Rounding up schools of fish prior to jumping out the water grants players higher point values, as will the speed boosts gained through the various magic rings floating in the air and submerged beneath the waves. Though the controls for jumping are straightforward, the challenge lies with how elegantly the player can enter and exit the water, heavily relying on the angles, speed, and trick performance. It’s all about stringing together successful combos and aerial maneuver, and if you do it just right, you may even find a place among the stars (both figuratively and literally).

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