On the Cheap – Crabitron

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Crabitron (iOS)
Developer: Two Lives Left
Price: $3

Rarely is there a stuffed animal worth grabbing in claw machines. They’re loaded with plushes that are more cheaply made than a McDonalds Happy Meal toy. But this doesn’t prevent me from taking a whack at each one I see. Positioning the suspended claw with the dinkiest joystick is a total thrill. Time is ticking as I hop from each angle, verifying that the metallic hand is above that knock-off Pooh’s grabbable belly. With a press of a button, I watch as the claw shakily descends toward the honey-loving bear. It’s not about the prize (my favorite Hundred Acre Woods buddy is Eeyore), but rather controlling that damn claw.

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On the Cheap – Bobbing

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Bobbing (iOS, Android)
Developer: Little Bobby Games
Price: $1

There’s nothing odd, at least to me, about reading Dante’s Inferno on a Kindle. The ability for new technology to adapt old art grants us easy access to a sprawling history of entertainment. Conversely, presenting new material through dated mediums sounds counterintuitive. For instance, listening to Skrillex on vinyl. Some people do it even though it seems physically impossible. You’re telling me that this Crosley can make my apartment go WUB-WUB with a needle scraping a spinning disk? I thought records were relegated to Frank Sinatra, like dubstep to mp3s.

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On the Cheap – Crazy Bill

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Crazy Bill (iOS)
Developer: Ivanovich Games
Price: Free

I can’t say that I have fantasized about spurting shotgun-like blasts from a pistol into an undead Steve Jobs. However, Crazy Bill has a vendetta for well-known people or characters, and views murdering them as a reward. “It’s okay, they’re zombies!” the game seems to suggest as you eviscerate a defenseless Spock or Charlie Chaplan.

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On the Cheap – Cordy 2

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Cordy 2 (iOS, Android)
Developer: Silvertree Media
Price: $5

It’s bizarre that Cordy is named after technology’s tangling plug. His hovering chassis with wirelessly connected appendages is a feat modern science is unable to mimic, yet his moniker comes from that nuisance of a thing charging our phones? It’s like naming a brand of cigarettes Mr. Cancer. Cables are a means to an end that let us watch cute kitties on Youtube or microwave Stouffer’s French bread pizza. Knowing this, our copper-tinted, late-90’s-iMac-for-a-noggin hero makes sure that this necessary feature doesn’t define him.

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On the Cheap – Be Together

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On the Cheap is Squinshee’s regular gander at inexpensive or free games.

Be Together (iOS)
Developer: Chillingo
Price: $1

Attraction is a powerful emotion. Its strength makes us internalize subtle details, such as remembering likes and dislikes, in hopes to be closer with that special someone. Recalling these preferences can (and will) lead to moments of mental second-guessing. Does she like being kissed on the cheek in public? Skittles hurt her teeth…or was it Chewy Spree? What’s her favorite color? She wears purple a lot. Her favorite skirt is purple. Yeah, it’s purple. Definitely purple.

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