Steve's sporting selection
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Date: April 2003


A sporty theme this month with Steve Couch's selection of games, which are all available to play online and for free, without any need to register with the host sites. Some games require your browser to have a ‘plug in’ for Shockwave. You can download this for free here

We’ve selected games that we judge are also OK for the children we know, but if you are a parent, please don’t take our word for it - standards vary! We advise you to try the game and the site it’s on first before letting your kids loose on it, to make sure you’re happy. (And, don’t forget, you can also find three great games for kids in our own Global Gang area).

To play a game, simply click on its name.

With the weather taking a turn for the better, maybe it is time you logged off the computer and got some exercise…but then again, here are some top sports games to play online if real-life running around just seems too much like hard work!

Harry Potter Quidditch Practice
With Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets getting a DVD/video release on April 11th, this seems a good time to brush up on your Quidditch skills. This is actually four games in one, as you can choose to practice playing in any of the four Quidditch positions - Chaser, Beater, Keeper and, of course, Seeker. Some of the practice games are better than others, but we'll let you decide for yourself which position you prefer.

Rocket Soccer
Football game against the computer. The controls take a little getting used to, but you can choose how many players you and the computer have (between one and four) and you don't have to make the sides even! At least while you are learning, you can even things out a little by weight of numbers.

A slightly bizarre version of table football but good fun.

Home Run Rally
Take me out to the ballpark! A baseball batting game that is just like the real thing - at first you swing aimlessly with completely no control! As you find your timing and get your eye in control and consistency do improve though (unlike the real thing, for some of us).

Play against the computer in a best-of-three sets tennis match. The controls are simple, but take a little getting used to before you can make the ball go where you want it to. One of the better free tennis simulations we've found - yet.

Super Dunk
A versatile Basketball game, with a practice section as well as the opportunity to take on a computer controlled or human opponent, in three different styles of basket shooting - Free throw, Dunk and the mighty Air Dunk. Enough variety for the game not to get too easy too soon.

Ping Pong
Online table tennis, with a simple drag and click control system. Even at the easiest levels the computer can be hard to get points off, but this is still a good game.

Voodoo Bowl
Run in as many touchdowns in 60 seconds as you can, and score bonus points by running over the umpires. Watch out for the defensive line of zombies though, or you won't make the ten yards you need to get another first down. Great fun and very addictive.

2 Minute Drill
Plan your plays, set up your offensive line, and then see if you can actually make it work. Score as many touchdowns as you can in the final two minutes of the match, but make sure that you don't lose possession, or it's game over. A good game, but possibly one that will only be truly enjoyed by people with more than a basic appreciation of American Football.

QB Shootout
Throw the passes and hit the receivers to make ground and score touchdowns. The more passes you make, the further back your receivers go and the more points subsequent passes are worth. Score as many points as you can in three minutes.

A very satisfying sledging game. Race through a multitude of levels, picking up scoring bonuses and avoiding trees and other obstacles. You even get to choose from three different sledges/riders, all with their own unique balance of speed, braking and manoeuvrability. Each level has its own time limit, and if you're too slow, it's game over. Excellent.

The sport where Scottish women rule! You control the line and power of your stone as you try to outplay the computer. The one small gripe about the game is that the computer is a little predictable in its shot selection.

Play the games from our last review