Apple's App Store is flooded with short burst games to play... but what if you don't feel like paying for the privilege? Here's a selection of some of the best free gaming the iPhone and iPod touch have to offer.
There's no lack of free things to play, but why waste your time with iPhone and iPod touch games that you can only play for a few minutes before being prompted to pay to keep going? With a few exceptions, we've steered away from the "Lite" demo versions of most apps and away from the "freemium" stuff that offers very little play time for your precious bandwidth. Show Apple what you think of iPhone gaming by playing, but not paying for, some of these great iOS games.
Developer: NewToy Inc Genre: Multiplayer Word Puzzle
NewToy's multiplayer Scrabble clone is a highly addictive version of the wildly popular board game. The free version of Words With Friends is surprisingly playable, an ad-supported version that has deep hooks into Facebook and Twitter. Everybody's playing it; you should too.
Extras: Not much, but you may be motivated to invest in the paid version to drop the product placement.
Developer: Glu Mobile Genre: Twin Stick Shooter
The iPhone take on twin stick shooters like Smash TV and Total Carnage, Gun Bros adds progression and experience points to the mix, letting you upgrade and outfit your muscle bound Gun Bro with new weapons and gear. There's a lot of content in here, but there's also a lot of advertising. Still, it's a great-looking arcade game with decent shoot 'em up depth.
Extras: You can purchase in-game coins to unlock gear earlier.
Developer: Sillysoft Games Genre: Strategy Board Game
It's a game of classic world domination… because Lux Touch is a clone of strategy board game Risk. There's very little meat to this version of Lux and the interface could use a little work, but it's the best Risk imitator zero dollars can buy.
Extras: Nothing to speak of, but Lux DLX comes loaded with maps for a price.
Developer: ngmoco Genre: Puzzle
How high can you get? Stack charming blocks and tetrominoes while fending off the forces of gravity in this addictive stacking game. It's one of the iTunes App Store's older games, but also one of its best freebies.
Extras: Nothing extra here. Topple 2 might be worth your buck.
Developer: Team Phobic Genre: Arcade Puzzle
Guide an adorable little 'bot on wheels toward hidden keys by flipping gravity and avoiding spikes. Simple controls and a solid interface make this platformer that's short on content, but challenging and fun, worth the download.
Extras: Players can download level packs from within the game. The developer recently released a free Halloween level pack.
Developer: Andy Qua Genre: Arcade
This simple looking but highly addictive arcade flight game may suck hours of your life away. Cube Runner looks as sophisticated as the Super Nintendo game StarFox, but its tilt controls work like a charm. Strangely consuming.
Extras: Players can download and create their own free level packs.
Developer: Firemint Genre: Racing Simulation
One of the best looking driving games on the iPhone, Real Racing GTI is also extremely limited in what it offers for free. This is a sponsor supported version of Firemint's more robust Real Racing, but worth the download.
Extras: Not much in the free version, but the full version packs in tracks and drivable cars.
Developer: Zynga Genre: Social Farming
The insanely popular Facebook app can absorb more of your life while you're commuting or waiting in line. Tending to your virtual farm on the iPhone may be better done on your iPad, but having access to potentially withering crops from anywhere may be the best reason to download Farmville.
Extras: As with the Facebook version, FarmVille players can purchase Zynga money in order to buy special items to improve their farm.
Developer: Tapulous Genre: Rhythm
A simple, touchscreen take on Guitar Hero style rhythm gameplay that's wildly popular. Tap notes as they travel down a three lane note highway for short bursts of fun. Comes with a few tracks already playable and the option to unlock plenty more.
Extras: Players can download reasonably priced premium track packs from within the game.
Developer: MobilityWare Genre: Card game
This ad-supported version of Solitaire may be on the thin side, but it's free, you can use custom themed decks and serves as a very capable version of the classic card game. An ideal time waster.
Extras: No ads or paid upgrades; just good clean Solitaire fun.
We've shown you our picks for some of the best free iPhone and iPod touch games available today. Now it's your turn. What free gems have you found lurking in the iTunes App Store?
Previously: The iPad's Best Free Games Right Now [Kotaku]