Games galore

Play more than 40 simple yet challenging logic games and puzzles in this free pack.

Puzz! Bapp! Zbam! No, it's not a fight scene from the old "Batman" sitcom; it's three of the forty-something logic games and puzzles packed together in a mere 365K download in Logyx Pack. With names like Foldex, Thux, Rotiz, Chakz, Spiny Goo, and Qwez, the games themselves are all simple and easy to understand but offer a wide variety of challenges.

Logyx Pack is portable freeware that opened as soon as we unzipped and clicked its program file. The main interface accesses all games from the Play menu's Games No. 1 and Games No. 2 submenus. The program opened with the game Yum Yum, which we learned when we clicked Help involves removing every blue square but in the fewest possible moves. Blue squares can jump over and remove other blue squares in a manner similar to a king in Chess. You drag squares with a finger-shaped cursor. The game took about a microsecond to learn, but we saw right off its addictive potential. The Game menu had only one entry, New Game, which let us restart the game, while HomePage opened the program's Web site. We tried several other games, each with a brief but clear explanation under the Help button. Nam Chess is a chess game, but most of the games were unfamiliar but intriguing. Zoodoku is like Sudoku, only with cartoons like Daffy Duck and Sylvester instead of numbers; in fact, many games used familiar cartoon faces, which makes for fun and colorful play but also for excellent mnemonics. Some other games had an Images menu with other choices, and some also had Skill level menus. Still other games, such as the picture puzzle game Puzz, involved scoring money, which raised additional possibilities we didn't pursue.

Complex, graphics-intensive simulations may be the cutting edge of computer games, but these ultrasimple yet endlessly fascinating and utterly engrossing logic puzzles and games can also help keep you alert and sharp. With so many games to choose from in such a small package, there's something for everyone.

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