As soon as it became apparent a few years ago that the mobile platform for applications wasn't just going to be a secondary market, developers around the world pulled out their coding fingers and started typing away, creating games that have since grown to epic proportions: like Angry Birds, for example. In the game you've almost certainly played or have seen played in front of or behind you on a bus or airplane at some point, you simply pull back on a slingshot using your smartphone's touch display and let it loose, knocking down targets. A game as simple as that became so earth-shatteringly popular that the group who made it, Rovio, is creating a television show, has their own shop (and soon line of shops) containing physical merchandise, and they've made millions of dollars from the game and subsequent games alone. And it all comes back down to the fact that it feels so RIGHT to play it on your smartphone - wouldn't you say?
What you've got here is a case of "why didn't I think of that" on a rather grand scale. You've got this and a few other games out there in the mobile market that have such a simple set of controls that they're basically irresistible to play. Another example, this time a relatively new game that hasn't quite taken off yet, is Traffic Panic 3D, a game you can get on the market right this second completely for free (for a limited holiday time). Have a peek at how it works here:
Hit one button or the other button, and that's it. Then there are games so simple in their user interface that there's only one button while the entire device is used as, for example, a steering wheel. You can see this in games such as Riptide GP, a game your humble narrator uses quite often to display the graphics prowess of devices like the Transformer Prime and the iPad 2. Check out a side-by-side video here to see the game made perfect for mobile:
Hows that for a touchscreen interface working to make mobile the best platform it can be for gaming? There are those of you who do not agree with using these devices for games, of course, and I'd sure like to hear your opinions too: why do you hate so hard?
Then for those of you attached to mobile by the hip: what would you like to see developed in this environment? Do you like using on-screen controls, or do you like to stay out of the action? How about external controllers? Or is that cheating?