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Games on the Go: All the Colors of the 'Bow

Color is all around us, but it's something we can easily take for granted. The games we play are, almost without exception, in color, and it's something that rarely interferes with our gaming experience. Some games, however, choose to make color a focal point. When it comes to design, that can mean lush and vibrant worlds. When it comes to gameplay, it can mean a challenge as mind-warping as the Stroop Effect. Today, we'll take a look at games that focus on color in a variety of ways, but a word of warning to the color blind: You may want to sit this week's picks out.

If you, anyone you know, or a game you love is a great candidate for our independent Flash games round-up, email the author at
bend@switched.com.

'Klikwerk'

klikwerk
In 'Klikwerk,' players are presented with a series of colored shapes, each labeled 'point,' 'click,' 'drag,' 'drop' or 'space,' and must clear these shapes by following their respective directions (e.g., hovering the mouse over them, clicking on them, dragging them from one area to drop them in another, or pressing the space bar). Directions are also relayed via rhythmic vocal cues, all set to a pulsing beat. The combination of the music and visuals alone is so well done that the game is worth at least one play. While each game of 'Klikwerk' is the same, a bonus round awaits those skilled gamers who are able to score 30,000 points or more within the allotted time.

'Touch the Bubbles 3'

Touch the Bubbles 3
'Touch the Bubbles 3' lives up to its name in spectacular fashion, as the radiant neon gloss of its levels combine with a smooth electronic soundtrack to mimic being at a rave, or at least at a swanky car dealership. Using a mouse, the player guides a ray of light through tight corridors, and past deviously moving obstacles in order to burst all the bubbles in a stage. Fast bubble-popping action can result in weighty point scores, which can then be (quite helpfully) used to purchase extra lives. The game can get tricky pretty quickly, requiring some finesse with the mouse. We recommend playing with a real one rather than a touchpad.

'Chromatic'

Chromatic
'Chromatic' compiles tons of clever gameplay elements in a ridiculously enjoyable way. Gamers control a small ball, using the keyboard to roll it and make it jump. The fun comes in the ball's ability to change color, from red to blue to yellow. With each color comes a unique special ability. Red indicates speed, blue the ability to jump walls, and yellow the ability to double-jump. To master the game, players must learn how to combine their different abilities to circumvent various platform-based challenges. Collecting hard to reach coins is one of the best reasons to learn various color-coded combos, but it's fun, too, to successfully pull off a blue-to-gold double wall jump.

'Hue Shift'

hue shift
'Hue Shift' requires sharp reflexes and an even sharper mind. Players control the jumping and color-shifting abilities of a small, automatically moving block. By timing its changes from red, green and blue, players are able to slowly climb a series of multi-colored platforms. The difficulty lies in the fact that the block must be the same color as the platform on which it's sitting; otherwise, it will fall through. Mastering split-second color shifting (e.g., jumping through a green platform, then shifting colors to land on it) is essential. Progress is rated by how many platforms you can ascend before you fall. The higher you climb, the more finesse is required of you, and the more stressful it becomes to successfully exploit your little block's chameleon-like abilities.

'Pixel Legions'

pixel legions
'Pixel Legions' is a strategic game involving green-, blue-, orange- and purple-colored pixel armies. Players are given a home base, which produces small battalions of pixel fighters. These fighters can either be directed to a section of the battlefield via direct click, or set to follow along a specific pathway. The object of the game is to overwhelm your opponents' bases while maintaining the safety of your own. Real strategy is required to tackle this time-waster, so be sure to brush up on some military tactics beforehand.

Tags: chromatic, color, FlashGames, gamesonthego, HueShift, klikwerk, PixelLegions, TimeWasters, top, TouchTheBubbles3, videogames