Be afraid. Halloween is Thursday, and if the jack-o'-lanterns in the windows on every Long Island street don’t put you in the spirit, these scary and frightening games will turn your smartphone into a house of horror.
(iOS, free; Android, $4.99)
Teenagers spend the night on an abandoned island. What can possibly go wrong? Everything, after the teens unwittingly open a portal to the island’s horrific secrets. But don’t let the premise fool you into thinking this is a standard slasher game. Oxenfree is a well-crafted story-based game in which you become emotionally involved with the characters. More suspense than gore, Oxenfree has been compared to TV’s “Stranger Things.”
Dead Trigger 2
(iOS, Android; free)
What’s Halloween without zombies? In this game, your goal is to stay alive by killing the undead. While the zombies keep coming in waves, you can add scores of powerful weapons to quell the invasion. The graphics are terrific, and the gameplay offers many levels and scenarios. Although the game debuted in 2015, it is kept fresh by continual updates, including one earlier this month.
Granny: Chapter Two
(iOS, Android; free)
This is not your father’s granny. This brand-new game, released last month, is a horrific retelling of the haunted house genre in which you are a locked in a decrepit home and are stalked by a murderous killer, in this case granny. Your goal is to get out — or at least to hide. There’s also a grandpa in this game, and he’s no slouch when it comes to mayhem.
(iOS, Android; $4.99)
Grizzled gamers will recall this all-time classic demon-slaying game that debuted in 1993, when mobile phones were the size of pumpkins. This is not an update but a faithful re-creation of that groundbreaking PC game. The graphics are cheerfully retro, and the splatter is just as pixellated as you remember it. The controllers are a bit clunky, however, especially for modern-day mobile gamers.
Kids Kindle debuts
Amazon has unveiled a Kindle e-reader exclusively for children. The Kindle Kids Edition has access to thousands of age-appropriate books and comes with what Amazon calls a sturdy “kid-friendly case” and a battery that can go for weeks without a recharge. Kids get motivation to read by earning “Achievement Badges” after they finish a book. The device goes on sale Wednesday for about $110.
— PETER KING
Google’s new Stadia streaming service, which lets you play video games without downloading them, will go live on Nov. 19. Google’s entry crowds an already competitive cloud-gaming market that includes Sony’s PlayStation Now service and Microsoft’s upcoming xCloud gaming service. Cloud-based computing is meant to lower the barrier of entry for console-quality, high-definition gaming by reducing the spending for consumers.
— WASHINGTON POST
Received an item delivered by FedEx you need to return? Walgreen’s and FedEx are expanding their partnership to make it easier. While you have been able to drop off your FedEx package at a Walgreen’s store for several years, you can now print out the return label inside the store. All you need is a return code emailed to you by the retailer you ordered the item from.