Five to Try: Facebook's Lifestage is for the kids, and Oh… Sir! lets you hurl savage insults

Social sharing, serious slams, and plenty more in this week's app selection.

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Halloween is on the other side of the weekend, but if you want to get some treats for your Android phone right now, we’ve got you covered: here’s a fresh batch of interesting new apps and games that just hit the Play Store. Facebook’s Lifestage app is the big release this week, although if you’re over 21, the video-centric social experience won’t be for you. Tell a kid! 

Otherwise, Oh… Sir! The Insult Simulator is a hilarious game of competitive disparagement and PinOut puts a stylish endless spin on pinball, while Yahoo View brings free streaming video and Batman – The Telltale Series drops the Dark Knight into a compelling adventure.

Lifestage

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No money, mo’ problems, right?

Facebook has about a quarter of the world’s population within its grasp, but kids these days seem more interested in Snapchat and other messaging apps. Enter Lifestage: it’s essentially Facebook’s attempt to counteract quick-hit, video-centric apps by giving teens a new place to connect and share. You don’t even need to have a Facebook account: just plug in your name, phone number, age, and school, and you can jump right in.

Rather than have a static profile or even still images, you’ll capture quick video clips with themed borders: My Happy Face, When I Have No Money, or My Fans, for example. However, beyond the colorful designs and loose interface, Lifestage also keeps its crowd to 21 and under, as anyone who identifies as older can’t pick a school or connect with other users. Stick to your Facebook, olds—this one’s strictly for the cool kids today. 

Oh… Sir! The Insult Simulator

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The stupider the insult, the better.

Got a stockpile of schoolyard zingers you haven’t been able to use in polite society? Now’s the time to tap into that knowledge as you dominate the masses in Oh… Sir! The Insult Simulator ($2). This head-to-head game challenges both players to work from the same word list, trading turns as they pick words to build the ultimate slam against the other.

Moms, hats, beloved aunties, dogs, and scents are all fair game in a game that finds proper British ladies and gentlemen trading brilliant taunts. You’ll earn points for the quality of your insult, plus there’s some strategy, as each character has a specific weakness to uncover and each level has context-sensitive keywords. It’s the funniest game I’ve played in ages, and you can battle online, against a local pal, or with a computer foe.

PinOut

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It’s like endless Tron pinball, which is as cool as it sounds.

Don’t believe its name: game studio Mediocre has proven itself capable of greatness, as seen with both Smash Hit and Does Not Commute, and its latest game continues that trend while building off of a familiar progression model. PinOut looks like a neon-infused pinball table, but unlike traditional tables that are bound by physical (or digital) constraints, the playing field here just keeps on going and going.

It’s endless pinball, essentially, and it works splendidly: instead of battling for a high score, you’ll need to keep pushing the pinball ever ahead to add more time to the clock, trying to continue on for as long as you can. And like those other games, you can play totally free or opt into a $2 premium upgrade, which lets you continue from checkpoints along the way. 

Yahoo View

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If you love anime, Yahoo View is for you. Everything else is hit-or-miss.

One-time Internet giant Yahoo seems to have its fingers in a lot of different categories, but doesn’t seem to have a very strong or cohesive front in any of them. Yahoo View is a prime example: the company’s streaming video service can’t hope to compete with the vastness or ever-changing offerings of YouTube, nor does it have the premium content of a Netflix or Hulu. Still, it offers a couple of key reasons to take a look. 

It’s the best place to find authorized clips from Saturday Night Live and NBC’s late night and morning shows, plus Yahoo View has a startlingly large treasure trove of anime, including several hundred Naruto episodes and plenty more. There’s little else in terms of full episodes, however, including the Yahoo-funded final season of Community, which is totally missing. Some people might get solid use out of this free ad-supported app, however. 

Batman – The Telltale Series

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It probably won’t look this crisp on your phone, assuming it’s even compatible.

After delivering episodic series based on the likes of The Walking Dead, Minecraft, and Game of Thrones, Telltale has turned its attention to the Dark Knight himself—and in this five-part series, you’ll play as both Batman and Bruce Wayne. As the playboy philanthropist, you’ll mix it up with politicians and potential allies, while the superhero moments bring tap-and-swipe battles, crime scene investigations, and interrogations. And your actions and decisions help shift the story throughout the series. 

It’s a cool new take on the Caped Crusader, and the first episode is free (the others are sold within), but you’ll be lucky if you can even play it: device compatibility is super limited right now, and it wouldn’t even work with a Galaxy S6 Edge+, let alone my older Nexus 5. Play Store reviewers also say performance is an issue on compatible devices, which is exactly what happened with the iOS release. With a free first episode, however, it’s well worth trying out if your phone made the list.

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