The coronavirus pandemic has claimed more than 250,000 lives so far, and with nationwide lockdowns around the globe, more and more people are spending time at home. All this time indoors has resulted in excessive boredom and people are taking up hobbies, participating in mundane internet challenges and developing new skills with all this extra time they have on their hands now. And for those who are still bored, Google has come up with the idea of showcasing some of it’s most popular Google Doodle games from the past. Google Doodle’s don’t only highlight historic achievements, events, etc, but every once in awhile the Doodle would feature a game, and these have all been carefully archived on the Google Doodle Blog. The Google homepage has been featuring some of the most popular games by the company since April 27. On their website, Google shared, “As COVID-19 continues to impact communities around the world, people and families everywhere are spending more time at home. In light of this, we’re launching a throwback Doodle series looking back at some of our popular interactive Google Doodle games!”
Here are some of the games that have been featured so far, and our take on what they’re like:
Coding with Carrots
April 27: Coding for Carrots was the first feature from the Google Doodle game archives. The game dates back to 2017 and was originally created to celebrate Logo, the first-ever programming language which was designed for use by children. Although the programming language is for kids, it took me a couple of tries to get the shortest code to complete the final few levels. This game is by far the most challenging (compared to the others), but also a fun brain exercise and will keep you occupied for a while.
Cricket with cricket
April 28: On day two, the Doodle game was the cricket game that celebrated the ICC Championships Trophy 2017 by letting you play cricket as a cricket. While the game is relatively easy, maintaining focus and not getting run out takes quite a bit of mental energy.
April 29: Not all the ‘games’ from the Doodle games archives were games, like on day three, the Doodle ‘game’ was a celebration of Oskar Fischinger’s 117th birthday, and the aim of the ‘game’ was to create music using the multiple visual patterns on the screen that created different sounds.
Clara Rockwell’s theremin
April 30: Unlike day three, where one can customise and create their own sounds, day four offered the opportunity to play the 1930s signature instrument, Clara Rockwell’s theremin. The theremin was to the 1930s what electronic instruments are to the present. One can have some fun with this game by moving their cursor over the notes, there are also more controls for the instrument’s sounds which can be accessed with the gear button.
Garden Gnome catapult game
May 1: Day five of the Google Doodle games moved away from the musical theme and onto the genre of catapult games with the Garden Gnome catapult game. The game originally debuted for Garden Day 2018 (a German holiday) to celebrate garden gnomes. The game is super fun and quite similar to Angry Birds, the aim is to catapult gnomes across a filed ensuring that the maximum number of flowers are planted in the field, flinging the gnome across the field, making it bounce on logs, clouds and mushrooms.
The Scoville scale
May 4: Day six of the Google Doodle games was a celebration for the man behind the Scoville Scale, Wilbur Scoville. The Scoville Scale measures the heat in different varieties of peppers. This game is more informative and barely a game, on the screen you first see the kind of pepper that the illustration of Wilbur Scoville eats, he then reaches out for some ice cream (the player is the ice cream), this is where the game begins. At each level (there are four) in the game, you play an ice cream cone with three scoops of ice cream, and the aim is to throw scoops on the pepper at the right time to diffuse the heat and achieve the ‘hottest’ ranking.
May 5: Cinco de Mayo, or the Fifth of May, is a very popular Mexican holiday that commemorates the Mexican Army’s victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in May of 1862. And as the lockdown has prevented people from celebrating, Google decided to celebrate Mexican culture by bringing back its Loteria Google Doodle game. This Doodle game is by far the most interactive. The game is very similar to Bingo, but instead of numbers the game uses cards, and beans are used as markers. The interactive element comes from the fact that the game automatically matches you with other players online and also lets you share the links to your game with your friends so that you can play with them.
Magic Cat Academy
May 6: Today’s Google Doodle game, Magic Cat Academy, was originally featured for Halloween 2016. In this game you play Momo, a cute novice magician and spell-casting cat who has to defeat an army of ghosts who are set to destroy the ‘Academy’, where you study. All you have to do is swipe the symbols above each ghost’s head, which will cast the right spell to defeat them.
Unlike the case with Google Doodles usually where they disappear after a day. All the games that have been resurrected can be found once you click on the current day’s Doodle on Google’s homepage and it reidrects you to all the games that have been made available for these two weeks.