The best Facebook Messenger games to play right now

16/19 Replay Gallery More Galleries
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The best Facebook Messenger games to play right now

Starting today you can play games inside Facebook Messenger and News Feed, but which should you try? There are old classics like Pac-Man and Space Invaders, as well as modern titles like EverWing and Words With Friends you can play by tapping the game controller icon in a Messenger thread. Click or scroll through to see our quick reviews and scores out of 10 for all 17 of the launch titles, plus our three favorite picks at the end.

1/19

EverWing – 7/10

This vertical scrolling shooter game shows off the graphics potential of the HTML5 platform. EverWing sees you flying through hordes of enemies and shooting down bosses. A twitchy good time in bullet hell.

2/19

Galaga – 7/10

The arcade classic space shooter has been rebuilt as a quick Messenger game, giving you one life instead of three. You shoot at wave after wave of swooping squadrons of enemies. Easy to play, but hard to master, especially with the finicky mobile controls. Play on desktop to make it easier.

3/19

Shuffle Cats Mini – 5/10

Zynga’s attempt at a Messenger game puts you in a card-flicking shooting gallery. It’s a simple but fun test of skill that shows the potential for shooting games on Messenger.

4/19

Pac-Man – 4/10

This arcade classic doesn’t fair too well on Messenger. Spotty controls mean you’ll miss your tunnel and get eaten by the ghosts. Facebook promises me the controls will get more reliable so I don’t pull my hair out with this one.

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5/19

Words With Friends – 5/10

A synchronous, fast-paced version of Zynga’s hit turn-based Scrabble clone. Make words with your letters before your tray overflows. It’s either a fun intellectual challenge or a frustrating trip back to English class, depending on your style.

6/19

Hex FRVR – 4/10

This odd little puzzle game takes the urgency out of Tetris. Place your tiles to make lines, but don’t get stuck with no moves. It feels a bit too slow-paced for a Messenger game.

7/19

Arkanoid – 7/10

Similar to the classic game Breakout but with power-ups, it’s like one-player Pong. Bounce the ball off your paddle to destroy the bricks, and hope your finger doesn’t slip as the mediocre touch-screen controls can easily make you miss.

8/19

Templar 2048 – 1/10

I can’t tell if I’m playing God or just wasting time with this weird puzzle game. Slide the tiles around to combine people into farmers and soldiers. Slow, frustrating and boring, this could only be a seen as a fun challenge if you hate yourself.

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9/19

2020 Connect – 2/10

A new spin on the hit game Threes, where you match tiles to build their numbers…and then match them some more. This feels too much like a chore to be fun, and the primary colors will give you kindergarten flashbacks.

10/19

Brick Pop – 3/10

This think-ahead puzzle game sees you pop the connected dots while avoiding getting stuck with only one of a color. Oddly satisfying, but a bit too repetitive to keep your attention long-term.

11/19

Bust-A-Move Blitz – 3/10

Delightful yet mindless, this puzzle game sees you shoot bubbles to burst chains of the same color or cause big-point avalanches. A good way to turn your brain off.

12/19

Track & Field 100M – 2/10

Alternate mashing those buttons to make your runner sprint in this Konami game. It feels like your legs are made of cement compared to the speedy computer-controlled characters, and coming in last gets old fast.

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13/19

The Tribez: Puzzle Rush – 1/10

The lamest of the Messenger games, Tribez is just a stripped-down Candy Crush clone with an even more annoying theme. If you can make it through its boring levels, you’ll be congratulated by a terrifying computer child’s voice.

14/19

Zookeeper – 6/10

This is the funniest of the Messenger games, where you match 8-bit tiles under the time limit. Between the funky art style and insults dispensed by the zoo’s boss when you screw up, this is the only Instant Game to give me a chuckle.

15/19

And now, our picks for the top 3 Messenger games…

16/19

#3: Endless Lake – 8/10

The prettiest of the Instant Games, Endless Lake is Temple Run meets Monument Valley. You tap to jump over the pits while enjoying the psychedelic scenery. Fun, but almost too quick.

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17/19

#2: Wordalot – 9/10

The most innovative of the Messenger games, Wordalot combines Scrabble and crossword puzzles as you try to make words related to the picture up top. There’s no time limit so it can feel slow, but it’s a great brain teaser if your friends take forever to text back.

18/19

#1: Space Invaders – 9/10

The arcade game that started it all, Space Invaders makes a graceful transition to mobile. Dodge behind destructible barriers as you shoot down aliens. It strikes the right balance between addiction and satisfaction that will have you saying “I can’t believe I got hit…okay one more game.”

19/19

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