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Top-15 Engaging Free Games for Windows Phone

The great thing about free games is that they're free. But then the terrible thing about free games is they're often terrible. But then the other great thing about free games is that you can rely on Apowerjouornal to try them out for you.

We've done exactly that with Windows Phone games, wading through the murkiest depths of the Windows Phone store in search of gaming pearls.

And as luck would have it, we've found 15 worthy games that we had personally played! So here they are - with a freshly revised and expanded list packed with the latest and greatest Windows Phone freebies.

1) Juice Factory

Juice Factory sounds industrial, but there's nothing factory-like about the way you feed the juicer: You hurl steak knives at floating fruit. Sounds like an HR nightmare to us. Touch input lets you adjust the angle and power of your throws. If you need an entirely free game, this one's a keeper, with over 180 levels, two game modes, and worldwide online leaderboards.

2) CROSSY ROAD

This ridiculously fun endless tapper finds you crossing roads and rivers alike in a quest for leaderboard glory. The Minecraft-esque look and unlockable characters are ultra-charming, but the real appeal comes from the rush you feel narrowly avoiding collisions and passing your friends' names plastered on the ground along the way. And it never beats you over the head with ads or in-app purchase demands.

3) SwipyMan

A top seller in the Windows Phone Marketplace, Swipy Man is all about stick-figure swinging (on a rope). You tap to get the little guy moving, then tilt your phone to get him to the platform and let go for a landing. Each time you swing Swipy Man, the platform gets a different size and shape, and sometimes it moves, so landing is never the same twice.

4) Candy Crush Saga

Candy Crush is a popular gaming title that has seen gobs of success across multiple platforms. Candy Crush Saga is seeing this success come to the Windows Phone platform. Think of it as a game of Bejeweled, just played with candy instead of gems.

The multi-level match-three game (1,025 levels and growing) has you shifting candy around the gaming screen to create matches of at least three of the same types of candy. Grouping beyond three will generate bonus candies with special power-up abilities.

Candy Crush Saga's gaming levels have defined goals such as scoring a set number of points or clearing out all the jelly-encased candies. To add to the challenge of the game, each level has a limited number of moves to reach those goals. There are plenty of boosters to unlock and use to help you advance through the game and there is Facebook integration for those who want to brag about their scores.

Gameplay is regulated by a token system. You begin with five tokens, and if you fail a level of play, you will lose a token. Should you run out of tokens, they will replenish automatically over time, or you can make an in-app purchase to refill them quicker. Candy Crush Saga also has support for cloud saves. While not a universal app, this will let you save your gaming progress and pick things up where you left them should you change Windows Phones.

This roundup was the first occasion I had to play Candy Crush Saga, and like other match-three games, it has an addictive pull to it. Graphics are nicely drawn up, game play challenging and overall Candy Crush Saga comes across as an entertaining, addictive way to pass the time.

5) ASPHALT 8: AIRBORNE

Smash your opponents’ cars into pieces and perform impossible aerial stunts with beautifully rendered vehicles. It’s what we’ve always dreamed of - handling expensive cars and wrecking them without paying a single penny. You don't have to pay a single penny for this unrealistic racing game too.

6) Fireworks

Perhaps it's a cheat to include Fireworks in a list of games, but this light display–created when you tap the screen or drag your finger (or up to four fingers) across it–is more fun that a lot of apps that keep score. You get all the sound and vibratory feedback you'd expect from an experience with explosions in the sky.

7) Talking Ben the Dog

Talking Ben the Dog is more of a novelty app than a Windows Phone game, but still made its way into the Top Free list. Talking Ben the Dog is an interactive app where you have a wide range of options to interface with Ben.

The storyline has Ben being a retired chemistry professor who likes the quiet and comfortable life. You find him lounging in his chair and can feed him, offer him a drink and even send him back to the laboratory to do a few chemistry experiments.

Ben will also react to being tapped or hit in the face or stomach, to having his belly tickled and will have a conversation with you when you tap the telephone button. There is a child mode button in the settings that will tone down some of Ben's reactions and you can also tone down the violence by turning off the ability to hit Ben.

You can even record your interactions with Ben by tapping the record button in the upper left corner of the screen. Recordings can be saved locally, uploaded to YouTube or shared via the Universal Share Picker (email, Twitter, messaging, OneDrive, etc.). Here is a small sampling of how Ben looks on camera.

There is no score to achieve, no gaming level to conquer. Even without gaming features, Talking Ben the Dog can be a fun Windows Phone title to spend a little time with. The game is available for Windows 8 and low-memory Windows Phones. Please note that while Talking Ben the Dog is available for 512mb devices, the record feature is not available for these devices.

8) Threes!

We don't know why Threes! is free on Windows Phone, since the ad-free version has a price tag elsewhere, but we're not questioning it. We do, however, strongly advise you to download it if you like brainy puzzlers at all. It's one of the best designed for touch devices, challenging you to constantly add up matching and compatible tiles as the screen fills up with every move. You'll have to play smart and steady if you want to get deep into this enthralling entry.

9) STAR WARS: COMMANDER

If your love of Star Wars was recently renewed by The Force Awakens, then Star Wars Commander might be the game for you.

It's a Clash of Clans-esque base builder that lets you oversee your own little corner of the galaxy, as you choose whether to side with the Rebellion or Empire and complete missions that toss in the likes of Darth Vader, Han Solo, and Princess Leia. Just try not to blow through all your galactic credits at once.

10) Donged Speed

Donged Speed is another endless runner styled game that makes the Top Free list in the Windows Phone Store. You find yourself on a motorcycle, racing up the screen and dodging traffic along the way.

There is some confusion with the title. The splash screen reads "Fast Motor, Crazy Noel" while the title in the Windows Phone Store reads "Donged Speed". Along with the miss-matched titles, you also have an annoying ad banner that blocks the top portion of the screen, hiding your gaming score from view.

While there are design issues, gameplay was not too shabby. Graphics have a retro feel and gameplay can be challenging. You control the motorcycle with your Windows Phone tilt sensors and can tap the screen for a turbo burst of speed. Hit an oncoming vehicle or slam into the guardrails that line the roadway and the game ends.

Get rid of the ad banner, clean up the graphics and update the Christmas theme and Donged Speed could be a nice Windows Phone game to pick up from time to time. As is, it is a bit of a mystery why this game is listed amongst the top free games in the Windows Phone ahead of the likes of Doodle Jump DC, Sonic Dash and even Piano Tiles.

11) LARA CROFT: RELIC RUN

Relic Run is no Tomb Raider, to be honest: it's a free-to-play riff on the Temple Run theme, with bite-sized missions and plenty of items and coins to snag along the way.

But even with a tried-and-true template, Lara's runner is great fun, pumping in some cinematic thrills with vehicle sequences, death-defying leaps, and even dinosaur shootouts. With myriad costumes and weapons to unlock, it'll keep you raiding… or running, rather.

12) Impossible Shoota

If Space Invaders had a story, it might be the tale of the Impossible Shoota called Starboxer, whose only goal is to get revenge for his fallen planet. Before he succumbs to the relentless onslaught of 25 different types of enemies, Starboxer is going to take out as many as he can. And your score will be measured against many others online.

13) MODERN COMBAT 5: BLACKOUT

It's sort of mind-boggling that you can capably play the first-person shooter on a smartphone, but Gameloft's Modern Combat 5: Blackout shows how it's done.

There's solid campaign action chopped up into small bits, but the biggest attraction is surely the online multiplayer shootouts, which recall not only the look and feel of Call Of Duty, but also the fun. You'll need a pretty capable handset to run this one, but it's a blast online.

14) Angry Birds

Angry Birds is so beloved it spawned a movie. Space brings a new twist to Angry Birds. The game has over 300 levels across ten different planets. Because you’re in space things are a little different. Things like low gravity and light speed, give you a new way of playing this game, and give the birds brand new abilities they never had before.

15) Temple Run 2

The sequel to Temple Run, it brings new levels, new graphics, and more action. Unlock new achievements, and test your reflexes.  The game takes place in a temple floating in the clouds. Because the game takes place in the sky, you have aerial gameplay, with zip lines used to swing across large gaps. This gives players a new way of interacting by tilting the device to perform a swing

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