Angry Birds - Kill a few pigs and a few hours with the best free game on Android

11/12 UPDATE: Although one is always happy to see additional levels (45 in total) via an update, the folks behind the addictive Angry Birds are close to disenfranchising their fans by overloading the game with ads. I could live with a few of the ads, and the occasional video, but the placement (now in the upper right corner) and frequency (every single level for a longer period of time) have spurred numerous comments and 1-star ratings on the market. We'll see if Rovio addresses this in an update or else it'll have to worry more about Angry Fans than Birds.

Review/Original Post:
I first heard of Angry Birds through one of Conan O'Brien's promos. Admittedly, I was not that interested in a game for the iPad at the time, and I wasn't willing to plunk down $4.99 for the app. However, when word got around that there was a free full version available on the Android Market, I quickly downloaded, installed, and have not looked back since. Here are some happy thoughts on the addictive game.

Easy to learn, Hard to put down
Angry BirdsImage by sheehanpaul via Flickr
There is something to be said about a game that you can pick up and start playing in a matter of seconds. This was what made the Wii so attractive years ago, as more of the traditional video game required lengthy instructions and multiple button configurations (yet often came with minimal documentation). Angry Birds takes this concept to a whole new level, as all you need to do is wind up the slingshot, launch a bird towards an unsuspecting (but not defenseless) pig, and you're now familiar with the game play. Once you've started conquering a few levels and have picked up a few more birds, you'll likely find yourself playing for a few seconds, which will turn into a few minutes, and I'm sure in some cases, a few hours.

So many levels for free (yes, there are ads)
The true genius of Angry Birds is that it is challenging enough to keep you hooked, yet not impossible enough to make you give up entirely. Granted, I'm only on level 2-12, but on 2-9, I came close to throwing in the towel. However, I just started chucking the bomb birds around, and I realized that I didn't have to explode them manually. The collision with the blocks caused some pre-damage before their automatic detonation. That's a free tip for those stuck on that level as well. It's moments like these that make Angry Birds still fun after what could have been an hour of frustration. There are ads on the lower right, but with over 120 levels for the price of free, I can't really complain and nor should you.

Puzzle Love. More free games on Android?
This is the first game I've continuously played on my Droid X. I even have the nearly 100 MB Need for Speed that came with the phone, but barely even tried that game. I enjoy having something I can pick up, turn on, and get immersed in right away. The bonus is that Angry Birds keeps me hooked with its variety, and makes me want to try a level or two every now and then. It's perfect for public transit rides, and I'd love to see more puzzle games like this (for free would be best) on Android. For now, I'll keep the pressure up on those pigs. Forgive me, I've got some eggs to retrieve.

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