You can find plenty of games to play online, but after spending an hour or two passing the time with free computer games, you’re gonna need some new options. If you’re looking for single-player games you haven’t tried yet, you can check out some of these games which were once featured in Google Doodles, aka the animated illustration on the logo on the Google homepage. Here are the 14 of the best Google Doodle games to play for a fun night in.
If you’re looking for a game to play that doesn’t require a long setup or a gaming console, Google Doodle’s games are the answer. All you need to get started is a computer or phone and a stable internet connection. You can play all of the Google Doodle games on your desktop, and most of them work well on your smartphone, too. If you’re using a computer, you’ll use your mouse (or trackpad) and keyboard arrows for most games. In a smartphone internet browser, you’ll be tapping and swiping instead.
Some of these games are more than 10 years old, so you can expect a good dose of nostalgia as you look through the options. To browse through the Google Doodle game archives, visit the interactive section on Google’s Doodle page. Here are some of the top picks you can put on your "to-play" list.
1. Rubik’s Cube
The Rubik’s Cube appeared as the Google Doodle on May 19, 2014. It takes a few clicks to get a handle on how the pieces move in this digital cube — the colors only move horizontally, but you can click to turn the cube on all its sides and move the pieces that way. See if you can solve it by playing here.
2. Hip Hop Beats
Google posted this interactive Doodle Game in honor of Hip Hop’s 44th anniversary back on Aug. 11, 2017. When you start playing, there’s a video introduction with the history of Hip Hop, and then the game begins. Once it starts, you can mix your own beats.
3. Crossword Puzzle
Google Doodle celebrated 100 years of the crossword on Dec. 21, 2013 with this game. Test your knowledge with the Google Doodle digital crossword puzzle here.
4. ‘Magic Cat Academy’
The Google Doodle for Halloween 2016 featured a game called Magic Cat Academy, where you follow Momo, a black cat trying to rescue the school of magic through interactive challenges you can help with. Even though Halloween’s over, you can still get your game on.
Shoot some virtual hoops with this Google Doodle game. Google featured the Basketball game on Aug. 8, 2012. To play, you’ll click, tap, or use the space bar to aim and shoot.
Google launched this Doodle for the 30th anniversary of the classic arcade game on May 21, 2010. Feel nostalgic as ever as you guide Pac-Man around the map, eating up all the Pac-Dots you can, before you get caught.
7. ‘The Pony Express’
The Pony Express Google Doodle game was featured on April 14, 2015, in honor of the 155-year-anniversary of the Pony Express, a mail carrier system on horseback that began on April 3, 1860. The game features cute animation as you ride on your trusty steed, gathering up as many letters as you can, while avoiding obstacles such as cacti, fences, rocks, and more, as you cross the old West.
In this Google Doodle game from Aug. 10, 2012, you’re the goalie, and you need to move fast to keep those soccer balls out of your goal.
Another sport-inspired game, this Doodle game from Aug. 7, 2012, lets you jump hurdles like in track and field using your keyboard keys. This game doesn’t work as well on your smartphone.
Google gave the classic Mexican card game a virtual version with this Google Doodle game from Dec. 9, 2009. If you’ve never played Lotería before, this features an easy tutorial to guide you through the first trial round.
11. ‘Slalom Canoe’
This canoeing Google Doodle from August 9, 2012, guides you down a river in a canoe, as you avoid obstacles and pass through goals. This game works best on a computer, rather than a smartphone browser.
12. The Scoville
To celebrate Wilbur Scoville’s birthday, Google created this Doodle Game featured on the homepage on January 22, 2016. The Scoville Scale, which Scolville created, is used to measure the heat of peppers. This game features a pepper taste-test, and you’ll play the role of an ice cream cone tossing your scoops at the peppers, to beat the heat.
13. The ‘Doctor Who’ Doodle
Fans of the long-running science fiction TV series will want to play this fun Doctor Who Google Doodle from Nov. 23, 2013. Of course, even if you aren’t a fan of the Doctor and his Tardis, it’s easy to enjoy this platform-hopping game.
14. Garden Gnomes
This Google Doodle game from June 10, 2018, celebrates the garden gnome. Enjoy catapulting your gnome from a trebuchet and watching it fly across the ground, planting flowers as you go.
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