It can take calls and texts, show you photos posted to social media, navigate streets with maps, and it supports Siri, Apple’s personal assistant, so you can raise your wrist to ask a question or give a command.
And despite its teeny screen, Apple Watch is also a convenient gaming platform.
Oh sure, don’t expect a deep experience as you might find on a PC or console, but tapping through a “quick fix” digital diversion may help pass the time in line at a supermarket.
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If you’re not sure where to start, the following are a few recommended downloads from the WatchOS App Store – found inside the Watch app on an iPhone, which is required for Apple Watch.
‘Rules!’ (TheCodingMonkeys; $2.99)
With the iOS version taking home multiple award nods and being deemed an official App Store pick, “Rules!” was one of the first games announced for Apple Watch – and it still remains popular today.
In case you haven’t played the hit action puzzler, you’re tasked with tapping tiles based on the rules for the level, such as “Tap numbers in descending order,” “Tap green (tiles)” or “Tap animals,” as opposed, to, say, monsters or robots. Each level, the rules then revert back to an older one, and you must remember what they were.
Along with 100+ memory-testing levels, there’s also a daily “brain workout” mini-game challenge, an animated sticker pack and multiple difficulty settings.
‘Runeblade’ (Everywear Games; free)
“Runeblade,” a fantasy adventure role-playing game from Everywear Games, puts you in the role of a High Priestess of the War Mages, challenged with stopping an ancient menace from overtaking the realm. Ok, so the backstory is a bit trite, but the game offers many locations to explore, mythological beasts (and bosses) to destroy, and unlockable spells and abilities to earn as you level up over time.
Designed to be played in 5- to 15-second sessions, “Runeblade” increases in depth and complexity over days, weeks and months of gameplay. Its 2,000 levels in total have all been optimized for Apple Watch.
Also from Everywear Games for Apple Watch are simulations “Field Day” and “Micropolis!”
‘Trivia Crack’ (Etermax, free)
From social to mobile to wearable, this incredibly popular trivia game challenges you to answer crowd-sourced questions from across the globe.
Designed to be played entirely on the new Apple Watch – that is, no need to look at your iPhone – you’ll test your knowledge by tapping the correct answer to a question. Sample: What’s Muhammad Ali’s real name? Rocky Balboa, Rocky Marciano, Anderson Silva, or Cassius Clay (correct answer).
Similar to the other versions of Etermax’s “Trivia Crack,” this Apple Watch game lets you post or accept challenges from other players, and you’ll receive a notification on your wrist when it’s your turn. The game also includes animated colorful characters and millions of user-submitted questions.
‘Wordie’ (ICO Group; free)
Another great word game, “Wordie” shows you four photos and you must guess the common word between them.
For example, you might see a photo of people picking up trash in bags, a woman undergoing facial surgery, a ball pit at a playground, and a vinyl record. The answer here is PLASTIC, you get hints by the available letters to choose from and the number of spaces available à la “Hangman.”
There are more than 600 puzzles, plus you can create your own and share with friends. If you’re stuck on a level, you can also ask your friends for help on social media or use hints.
Cosmos Rings (Square Enix; $8.99)
From the same company that introduced “Final Fantasy” and “Secret of Man” comes a mobile adventure with charming pixelated graphics.
This simple-to-pick-up yet surprisingly deep role-playing game (RPG) offers a unique combat mechanic designed for the small screen: while basic attacks are automatic, you must enable powerful skill relics, strengthen your sword and initiate a chain sequence to battle your way through this dark world.
Need to go back in time to retake a mission? Simply twist the Apple Watch’s Digital Crown to turn back the clock!
“Cosmos Rings” may be most expensive game in this round-up, but it pays off as being very difficult to put down.
If you like RPGs, also consider “Lifeline: Whiteout” and “Lifeline: Crisis Line,” both for Apple Watch.
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Marc Saltzman is the author of the book, Apple Watch For Dummies (now in its 2nd Edition). Follow Marc on Twitter: @marc_saltzman.
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