Top 10 Puzzle Games
These killer Puzzle Games are sure to whet your whistle regardless of if you’re looking to challenge your reflexes, your problem solving, or both. Let’s dive right in!
Number 10: The Portal Flash Version
This first game may be familiar to longtime gamers. The Portal Flash version, by Ido, is reminiscent of the highly popular Valve title of the same name. Sporting the iconic blue and orange ovals, orange jumpsuit and snarky wordplay The Portal Flash version is a perfect side-scrolling homage to the series.
For those unfamiliar with the franchise, this flash iteration of the Portal series has you playing the role of a test-subject within a experimental science facility. Your role here is to stress-test the newly created portal gun. Scientists in charge have prepared a wide range of tests and trials to compliment the device, and will not let you leave before the last test has been run. The mysterious stains and other seemingly missing 15,836 test subjects shouldn’t be cause for alarm.
The Portal Flash Version includes over forty challenging levels, with nearly every feature included from the main series. It even includes a console mode to play around with once the game’s story-mode is completed. For fans or newcomers alike, Ido and his game will get you thinking with portals.
Number 9: QOOSH
Sporting a classic pixelated-platforming theme, Qoosh, by PsyFlash, warps in next with a unique approach on puzzle solving through its platforming. Qoosh has the players take on the role of a green, cyclopean creature of the same name, with the goal in mind of conducting a variety of science experiments. Unlike the previous title on our list, the power to warp was inside Qoosh all along, no portals required.
If Portal: The Flash Series was more a homage to the portal series, Qoosh would be more like a spiritual successor. The title marries the idea of timing-based puzzle platforming to player controlled switching and warping mechanics, with a unique twist. In-game achievements add an additional layer of challenge for the players who are looking to dive in further after their first run; the death and warp counters allow for self-inflicted challenges and limitations for further bragging rights.
Qoosh’s consistently polished levels, tight mechanics, and breadth of additional features maintain its quality beyond its age. If you are looking for a more hands-on puzzle experience, requiring a mix of reflexes and mental prowest, let Qoosh be your guide. Both he and PsyFlash look forward to making science out of you.
Number 8: Factory Balls
Looking to move away from a dexterity-based experience, and challenge your brain without straining your fingers? The Factory Balls series by BonteGames pulls the player out from some of these other real-time, movement driven titles and cuts straight to the puzzley-nougat center. Tasked with the goal of matching the blank-slate balls provided, to the stylized balls shown, the player is challenged to complete a gauntlet of logic-based puzzles of increasing difficulty.
The Factory Balls series has had several of its iterations live within the hallowed halls of Armor Games. Each sequel improves upon the quirky ball-altering mechanics of the previous game, polishing existing mechanics, while offering challenging and new ways to think outside the box…or ball in this case.
When it comes down to it, BonteGames is one of the premier developers when it comes to creating interesting new puzzle experiences. The longevity and consistent quality of the Factory Balls franchise is what earned its spot over some of Bonte’s other titles. His most recent game, “Yellow” continues to express the same blend of whimsy and logic that The Factory Balls series and its other siblings have long been known for. If you are looking to lose yourself for a few hours with a series of increasingly challenging and unique puzzle mechanics Factory Balls is a must play. These games and more can be found through Bonte’s profile.
Number 7: Shift
Before we fully move away from this sub-genre of platforming style puzzle games, the Shift series by developer Tony, stands out in the sea of games like it. The player is tasked to take hold of an experimentee once more, such is the life of a player-character, and must complete the levels presented and puzzles found within.
What sets the Shift series aside from other platformers, is its own flare it brings to the platforming table. By pressing the shift key while in a non-jumping state, the once black sprite is then flipped 180 degrees as the colors invert. The kicker, the player-controlled avatar can only move on the parts of the stage that match their current sprite color. This effectively doubles the movement options offered with each stage, and allows the player the ability to Shift perspectives.
The Shift Series has four of its iterations hosted for all to enjoy, and each game improves upon the gameplay of its predecessor. Each title polishes existing mechanics, innovating its shift-mechanics, adding challenging new levels, and later iterations even allowing for user created content. Check out the latest rendition of the Shift series here or at Tony’s developer page.
Number 6: Symphony
Symphony, by developer kpaekn, places the player in the role of a conductor of sorts. The game allows you to dictate the movement of various color spewing dots by means of arrow guided circles, with the goal in mind of directing the spray into the circle with the corresponding outline color. It alludes to this by gradually building a symphonic, orchestral piece of music that swells as the appropriate colors begin to fill its innards with the spray. As the puzzles become more complex, so to does the music growing as you explore the movements of this logic driven orchestral fantasia.
The reward of the various moving members of the musical pieces gradually growing and coming together is brilliantly executed and serves as a living growing reward system for the player to explore. So rarely do games outside of the rhythm genre explore this reward system, and it’s refreshing to find a game that marries the two concepts so fluidly. Removing that major aspect for a moment, and Symphony is the closest to a classic jigsaw puzzle found on this list, save perhaps the top choice.
Symphony does a phenomenal job of taking a simple goal and expanding it to become something artistically grand. Each color represents a different moving piece of the music being forged by direct effort of the players actions. There is a layer of satisfaction that one can liken to creating a work of art with ones own hands, though perhaps not as grandiose. Breath in deep, let the music flow through and release the inner conductor you have hiding within.
Number 5: String Theory
Diving further into the idea of abstract gameplay, here we find TeamSemiColon’s String Theory franchise. TeamSemiColon draw upon the players suspension of disbelief, taking up the role of an assistant, looking to guide their friend the circle out of this fantastical physics wonderland. The game takes a more hands-on approach to its levels, by giving the player the ability to freely manipulate key components of the stage itself. Individual strings will have their own properties, with some stages having unique physics engines or other mechanics designed to make completing the stage more difficult.
The later sequel of similar name, String Theory 2, takes players and puts them in the role of Eva, the triangle. Eva has lost many of her colleagues within this extradimensional space, and she has made it her goal to see that they are returned safely. TeamSemiColon worked to improve the longevity of the game, introducing a more in-depth storyline, while polishing and improving existing mechanics.
Our recent update to our quest log also allows for the completion of Armor Games sanctioned quests through various goals outlined for String Theory 2. If you are looking to flex your mental muscles, can you, Circle-Assistant and Eva help get their lost colleagues back to the upper plane?
Take a look at the most recent title in the series, with String Theory 2.
Number 4: Doodle God
Doodle God moves away from the more classic logic puzzle and problem solving methodology, and offers a more freeform presentation of its mechanics, challenges and goals. In the Doodle God series you put in the shoes of an omnipotent being, capable of forging and creating the very fibers of the known universe. The catch, you are a new diety, starting fresh with the most basic forces of nature.
Gifted with the forces of water, earth, wind and fire, it is your goal to bring forth new elements for your world by fusing together existing ones. The game starts off with a narrow scope, only allowing the fusion of singular elements, however as your elemental options expand so to do your potential fusion opportunities. Elemental fusion will always follows a logical train of thought(Ex: fire + water = steam), though there may be times where there are multiple paths to reach the same solution.
Doodle God is a series that can easily be left for days at a time, allowing time to process your potential elemental combinations. The game allows for the player to take their time, and dictate the criteria for their own success. Forge the world anew with developer Badim, and the latest installment of the Doodle God series.
Number 3: Lightbot
Lightbot, by CoolioNiato, takes a more unique spin on the standard logic puzzle, placing the player at the helm of a alien-like avatar on a grid style stage. Movement is detached from the players direct control, and takes place over a series of sequences. The player is tasked with the goal of maneuvering the avatar throughout the stage, succeeding once the avatar had moved over each of the blue squares present and using a specific command.
While the game offers its own approach to problem solving with a tile grid stage, and step-by-step movement, this game holds a bit of a personal softspot alongside its unique challenge. The game feels like a thoughtfully polished evolution of an old Java learning program known as Gridworld. In Gridworld the various objects, or avatars in our case, are capable of a few select actions, and often times the up-and-coming programmer would have to get creative to output more complex patterns. Lightbot, for me, hits a sweet-spot of nostalgia for the earlier days of programming and logic based problem-solving.
Challenges ramp up quickly, forcing the player to think logically and be thoughtfully attached to each command they select. Easily one of the more challenging, if not the most challenging of the games presented today, Lightbot and its sequels pay tribute to an relic of the programming field, and are worth a try if you are looking something more classically challenging. If you are looking to play the classic Lightbot, it is still housed within the archives of Armor Games, or if you are looking for a newer title go and check out CoolioNiato’s other works here.
Number 2: Colorzzle
Colorzzle is a delightful take on the puzzle genre, coupling pleasant minimalist imagery, relaxing music, and a series of progressively challenging stages. This is the first title for the self-started Darong Studio and developer GilbertLeaf, with this first version of the game containing 50 unique level designs.
Colorzzle showcases its logic challenges in the form of color fusion, with all potential solutions to be done by means of marrying two or more colors into a new, unifying idea. The goal of the game is to match colors into the squares with white centers, the border of said square indicating the color required to have the plants bloom and grow. Players can move any gray square, or colored square found atop a gray square with any other grey square found on the map.
Despite only having been released back in April, Colorzzle has cemented itself as a heavy-hitting title. Though it is only a demo, the 50 stages offered are more than enough to scratch that logic-puzzle itch. If you find yourself wanting for more take a look at Gilbert’s official website, where you can download the full mobile version.
Before we get into the top slot details, there are a few other titles that are worth mentioning but ultimately, were nudged out by other titles on the list.
Scalak, by developer HamsterOnCoke is a relative newcomer among these other titans of the flash-game world. It may not have the same longevity in the scene as the Shift or Factory Ball series, but what it lacks in age, it makes up for in creative minimalism. With no timer or score, coupled with an ever evolving game flow, players are left to test their logistical reasoning across 90 levels.
What it came down to is Scalak is perhaps one of the closest re-imaginings of a classic real-life jigsaw puzzle experience, which unfortunately nudged it out of this list of more quirky mechanics.
If you are itching for more levels like these, you can visit his main website to download the full mobile version of Scalak.
The I Saw Her Standing There series by krangGAmes approaches the idea of a puzzle-platformer, yet removes one of the more classic platforming aspects and places it out of the direct control of the player. Tasked with the goal of safely approaching your beloved and luring her to a safer location, the player is bereft of control of their own escape.
Unfortunately what ultimately pushed I Saw Her Standing There out of the major list is a strict numbers game; there were other platfomers that were included that had a similar feeling, while maintaining a higher performance consistency.
Number 1: Unpuzzle
Finishing up the top of our list is the classic Unpuzzle series. Developer Kekgame has hosted both the original Unpuzzle and its sequel, Unpuzzle 2, within the halls of Armor Games. The challenges feature a quirky look at your classic jigsaw puzzle taking the idea to an almost literal degree. Players are tasked with dismantling the puzzle presented before them, the only stipulation is that they can only remove one piece at a time. The game instructs through learned example, presenting each new mechanic shown as the puzzles become progressively more challenging. Often times the difference between finding the solution and having to start the entire puzzle over is the choice between two pieces.
This unique take on the standard jigsaw puzzle offers a crisp logical challenge, with clearly outlined mechanics, simple controls, and a polished gameplay. Kekgame is a relative newcomer in the world of flash-games, however, all three of their current titles are ranking in at over a 95% approval rating on Armor Games.
Don’t see a title that you believe deserves a spot on this list, or at least an honorable mention; feel like one of our other Puzzle Game titles should have gotten more time in the spotlight? Feel free to reach out to us here, Facebook or Twitter and let us know what you some of your favorite puzzle games are!