My daughter and I had an ‘Apps Afternoon’ a few days ago – a day where she came home early from camp and we just had a totally lazy afternoon on the couch with various iPad apps. The star of the afternoon, our favorite pastime, was Hanging with Friends.
Hanging with Friends, created by the same people who brought us the hugely popular Words with Friends, is a bit of a new take on the classic game of hangman. And of course the ‘with Friends’ portion of its title means that it’s a game that can be played against your friends and random opponents online. It’s an iPhone game for now, there’s no universal app or dedicated iPad version as yet – but honestly for what this game is, it works just fine in ‘2X’ mode on the iPad. There are no fancy graphics or effects to be diminished in any way by running it this way.
Here are some of the game’s key features:
•Cute characters in perilous situations
•Instant replay lets you see your opponent’s guesses
•Use strategic lifelines for hints
Built on the Games With Friends platform:
•Turn based design lets you play up to 20 games simultaneously
•Play with friends or find a match with a random opponent
•Stay in touch with friends and family with in-game chat messaging
•Push notifications tell you when it’s your turn
•Find friends to play with easily using Facebook Connect
My daughter is 8, so this is a better fit for her than Words with Friends, although we may give that one a try soon as well. For now though, Hangman is much more familiar game – one we have played before on paper and on the iPhone many times over.
We spent hours playing Hanging with Friends, partly because it is so easy to get multiple games going, make your plays, and then wait on alerts to say your opponent has taken their turn and it’s time for you to do something again. So were able to stay in the game for stretches where a game went quickly, and also pop out of it and use other apps while awaiting opponents’ moves.
I never even had to look for friends via Facebook or Twitter, we found random opponents instantly each time we wanted to get a new game going.
My daughter (Zoe) had a blast with the game, and was very good at it too. She was often a better solver than I was. It’s also great that when I come up with a longer word that she’s not heard before she always asks what it means, and is soaking up new words like nobody’s business.
The game doesn’t draw body parts onto a stick figure, as in the classic game – instead each player is holding a bunch of balloons, and every time they fail in a guessing round one of the balloons is popped. Whichever player has all their balloons popped first loses.
If you have kids who enjoy words this is a great game to play together.
Here’s an App Store link for Hanging with Friends; it’s currently priced at $1.99 (apparently for a limited time only during its early days in the App Store).