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These game apps require fast hands and fast thinking

Go Fish!, from developer Kwalee, has nothing to

Go Fish!, from developer Kwalee, has nothing to do with the classic card game. Instead, your goal is to catch as many fish as possible.  Photo Credit: Newsday/Kwalee

These four hit apps are officially classified as arcade games, and yes, you will need quick reflexes to survive. But to actually win the games, you will need an even quicker mind, because devising a keen strategy is just as important. 

Hole.io

(iOS, Android; free)

One of the most popular games of 2018, Hole.io is a study in controlled destruction. The goal is simple — you control a black hole that is wreaking havoc in a city. And the more havoc you wreak, the higher your score. Unlike most games, there are not several levels to master. You begin and end in a single but ever-changing cityscape. A Bluetooth mode lets you compete against players nearby.

Go Fish!

(iOS, Android; free)

First, as you might expect, there are several games on the app stores named Go Fish. But this one, from developer Kwalee, has nothing to do with the classic card game. The game’s goal is simple: You are looking to catch as many fish as possible. An endless variety of fish keeps cropping up, which makes the game fresh and new the more you play it.  

Rise Up

(iOS, Android; free)

This challenging app from Turkey-based independent developer Serkan Özyılmaz was a surprise hit in 2018, becoming a top-five game in both Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store. Gameplay appears to be easy: You must protect your balloon from popping as it rises up in the sky. But actually keeping your balloon safe is difficult. Because the obstacles change every time, each game feels different.

Axe Climber

(iOS, Android; free)

Another surprise 2018 hit, this mountain-climbing game actually taunts players with a hard cold fact: Only 2 percent of the hundreds of thousands of gamers who downloaded Axe Climber make it to the final level. As you try to climb a mountain, you face numerous obstacles and dangers. The blocky retro graphics add to the fun.

Dangerous distractions

About 25 percent of car crashes resulting in injury or death are caused by distracted driving. Still, about 50 percent of parents admit they talk on a cellphone and a third read text messages while driving with kids ages 4-10, according to a new study in the Journal of Pediatrics. Parents who use cellphones while driving were also more likely not to use their seat belts.

— PETER KING

Vespa goes electric

Vespa has announced that its first electric scooter, the Vespa Elettrica, will be available early next year. Vespas and other scooters are commonplace on Europe’s narrow roads, but they are still somewhat rare in the United States. A fully charged Elettrica has a range of about 60 miles. No price was announced, but the Elettrica is expected to sell for about $7,000.

— PETER KING

Gunning for TiVo

Now it’s TiVo in Amazon’s crosshairs. The e-commerce giant is reportedly developing a TiVo-like device that records live TV. The device, dubbed “Frank,” includes physical storage and connects to Amazon’s Fire TV boxes, the living room hub for the company’s online video efforts. Users will be able to record live TV and stream the video to a smartphone so it can be watched later.

— BLOOMBERG NEWS

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