Current Obsession: Time Management iPhone Games

June 1, 2011

I am what you might call a “casual gamer.” I really enjoy video games, but they’re not my primary or even my secondary hobby. I love our Wii and my favorite games for it are MarioKart, Dr. Mario (old school!), and Kirby’s Epic Yarn. But it’s hard for me to find time to sit down and play these games, especially when the TV is usually being used for other things.

I recently upgraded to an iPhone 4 after dealing with the slowness of the 3G for the past year, and now my iPhone experience is completely different. It’s so fast! Apps no longer crash! I’ve completely rediscovered my love for casual gaming. There are certain word and puzzle games that I like a lot, but I think I’ve found my favorite genre of video game, one that really shines with the touch screen of the iPhone: time management games.

My obsession first began with Sally’s Spa. I played this one a couple of years ago when my old phone was still new-ish. You are the owner of a spa, and you must handle all the incoming customers for the day by dragging them to the appropriate station and performing tasks in a certain amount of time. You earn money according to customer satisfaction, and with that money you can purchase upgrades. There are 50 levels which allow for a lot of play time. Even though I finished the game, I like it so much that I’ve gone back and replayed it from the beginning a couple more times.

Now that I have my new phone, I got the urge to find more games. I started playing Sally’s Spa again, but then realized that there are probably others out there similar to it. The search was on. The next game I tried was Chocolate Shop Frenzy because it was only $0.99. The concept is similar to Sally’s Spa except that it’s not as challenging. The money you earn only determines your score, you don’t do anything with it. Your shop is automatically upgraded. There is a fun Bejeweled-type game embedded, and awards you can earn. I completed the entire game in only a few hours, and although I could go back and get more out of it, it didn’t provide enough variety for me to love it.

The game I just finished playing last night is called Ranch Rush, and I loved it. In it you build up your own ranch and each level has you trying to complete a specific order for a customer. At first it’s simple things like a few crops, but as you advance you have to buy animals and machines in order to produce complex items like milk, cheese, wool, ketchup, jam, etc. There are lots of awards you can earn and organizing the ranch is fun on its own. I can tell that it’s one I’ll enjoy going back and playing over and over again.

I’m already planning my next time management game purchases. I’ve heard good things about Diner Dash and Cake Mania 3. Anyone else love these kinds of games? Have any to recommend?

Posted in: things i love, obsessions

Comments on Current Obsession: Time Management iPhone Games

  1. 1

    From Suburban Sweetheart:

    I LOVE Diner Dash; Cake Mania has always frustrated me. But they’re both fun! Thanks a lot, now I’m going to go waste some time on Ranch Rush…

  2. 2

    From kapachino:

    Awesome, I’m totally buying Diner Dash now! Why has Cake Mania frustrated you?

  3. 3

    From Suburban Sweetheart:

    I don’t know. Maybe because I can’t beat it? Haha.

  4. 4

    From Cait:

    I LOVE time management games, though I don’t play them on the iPhone (because I don’t have one, haha). But I’ve played a handful of different ones online and even downloaded some. I enjoy both Diner Dash and Cake Mania – they’re some of my favorites.

  5. 5

    From Nora:

    I was hopelessly addicted to words with friends & angry birds for a bit with my droid but i’ve since lost interest. I get into games and then suddenly I get bored with them. I may have to switch to an iphone soon though, so that might change things!

  6. 6

    From dadman:

    Watch out Kat, those games can take over your life :)

    Level 85 gnome mage World of Warcraft.

    For the Alliance !

  7. 7

    From Ro Manalo:

    My favorite games are: Diner Dash, Cooking Dash , Wedding Dash (which I find very challenging), Hotel Dash, Airport, and Anna Montana (this one I enjoyed the most–Anna Montana’s a cleaning lady who cleans the houses of celebrities and you actually have to do scrubbing motions in your iphone and other things to get the rooms clean).

  8. 8

    From Stephany:

    Ha…you were the one who introduced me to Sally’s Spa and it remains one of my favorite games. I usually go through the entire game, then wait 6 months and play it again. It’s so much fun – and addicting!

    I’m now off to look at the rest of these games. Ha!

  9. 9

    From Lauren:

    I definitely recommend Super Market Mania 2! It’s currently $5. They say that it’s 50% off so its either $10 after the sale or a glitch. I thought it was worth it though, 80 levels, upgrades, fun music and when I was near the end of the game, went back and made sure I got expert on every level. I played and bought the sequel before the original but the original is just as good.

    Also def recommend Jane’s Hotel! Think it only has 40 levels but just as fun and challenging. Still slowly working on Diner Dash. Although it’s kind of the quintessential time management game, not one of my absolute favorites

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