It's all very well us telling you about the relative merits of the latest mobile offerings, but sometimes you want to see a game action before you commit. So, to all those who have been demanding moving pictures, we've done our best to bring you the official videos.
For this week's download roundup we're going back to the future, as four-fifths of these games debuted on other formats ages ago.
Normally I like to balance the selection of these roundups between the formats, covering an iPad exclusive, an Android title, maybe a couple of iPhone games and a Windows Phone 7 offering.
It might be enjoying the extra daylight of a full review elsewhere, but it's worth dwelling on the joy of seeing neglected classics like Beyond Good & Evil 'remastered' in HD for the download generation.
Is it that time already? Apparently so. And it's another improbably decent line-up of games determined to suck up all the time that you definitely don't have.
If you added up all the downloadable games across Steam, XBLA, PSN, Minis, WiiWare, DSiWare and even the foolishly overlooked Xbox Indie Games Channel, how many games have been released to date? 4000? More?
Although these weekly roundups serve as a buyer's guide, it doesn't hurt to celebrate the many excellent freebies while we're at it. In fact, someone's already done all the hard work for us: app fiend Stuart Campbell, who once terrorised the Amiga scene and now prefers to spend untold hours sifting through thousands of iOS apps to pluck out the shining gems among the endless detritus.
Another week, another busy crop of games that won't take up any shelf space whatsoever. Top of my personal list is definitely Double Fine's latest, Stacking which instantly catapults us back to the days of Grim Fandango for cracked originality. And then there's the genius puzzling of Space Chem, while AI War got some overdue love. Quality at every turn I tell yer.
Nintendo motormouth Reggie Fils-Aime is never short of a thing or two to say about mobile games; about how they're a 'snack', and that most of these games are actually overpriced anyway. Well, he would say that, obviously, when he's the one in the position of trying to justify games that will retail for upwards of Ł35.
At what point does a knowing tribute just descend into a brazen rip-off? We see a lot of titles in the download and mobile scene that sail perilously close to the wind, at times, but there's a big difference between being 'inspired' by the mechanics of another game, and just lifting them wholesale.
The more popular this mobile gaming lark gets, the more interesting games come out, and the more fall through the cracks every week.
Is the proliferation of downloadable games making us choosier about our full-priced gaming purchases? It's quite a heavy topic to throw at you on a Friday afternoon, admittedly, but I've a feeling that the answer is, in most cases, yes.
Amidst all the frenzy surrounding Sony's NGP, the company's upcoming PlayStation Suite platform for Android-compatible handsets became something of a footnote.
When Sony finally took the wraps off the ludicrously powerful Next Generation Portable, it obviously wanted to show off its capacity to run full-blown console epics. By the looks of things, it should be able to do that extremely well.
Ever noticed how snooty some people can be about mobile games, or downloadable games in general? As if the fact that they're cheap, and possibly short, somehow disqualifies them from being considered 'proper' games?
Of the numerous Capcom remakes which surfaced a couple of years ago, Bionic Commando: Rearmed was one of the few to win appreciative nods across the board. It achieved the rarest of feats, managing to stay completely faithful to the source material without making you want to ram your hand in the nearest waste disposal unit.
In a week when the gaming world's attention is firmly locked on what's coming next from Nintendo, its strategy for the 3DS felt like an odd collision of truly cutting-edge technology and dogged old-school thinking.
Pick up and play mechanics may have served every previous tennis title in history, but 2008's Top Spin 3 was devoid of wussy visual indicators like power bars. Instead it was down to players to figure out the correct timing.
It's fair to say that gaming on Macs has hardly been Apple's number one priority over the years. But whether it intended for it to happen or not, the vast success of game sales on its various iOS devices has given the Cupertino giant reason to try and tap into Mac gaming as well.
Do you think price should come into it when we're reviewing mobile and download games, or do you think a game should always be judged on its own merits solely? It's an issue that never goes away, and few people ever seem to agree one way or the other.
We knew it couldn't last. After the giddy heights of last week's astonishing roundup, we were denied similar excitement this time around. It was tumbleweed on PSN and Minis, complete dross from WiiWare and a solitary XBLA release to focus on, Zeit˛, also available from Steam.
Goodness me, does nobody ever think to turn off the tap in mobile gamingville? Before Christmas, at least, there was such an almighty flood of interesting, big-name releases that I feared that many of them would end up being ignored.
It's long been accepted that the games industry basically turns off the tap of new boxed releases for most of December and January, but this year that only seems to have provoked the download sector. This past few weeks has produced some of its best games in ages, with the likes of Raskulls, ilomilo and echochrome II demonstrating the depth and quality you'd expect from games costing many times the price they ask.
Some combinations were meant to be. Lennon and McCartney. Dalglish and Rush. Peanut butter and jam. But Mr. Driller and Mario Kart? Aussie studio Halfbrick has attempted to fashion something palatable out of it nonetheless, and the results are... interesting.
Happy New Year folks! So what can we expect from mobile gaming in 2011? Judging by the endless rumours circulating at the back end of last year, it looks like it's going to be the year that Sony finally enters the market in some form.
Games of the quality of A Shadow's Tale used to fall through the cracks all the time. We used to get all indignant and shouty about publisher indifference to games like Katamari Damacy, Sly Raccoon and Psychonauts and then promptly dish out game of the year awards to make up for the rank injustice. It probably didn't make a lot of difference in the grand scheme of things, but it made us (and the 147 people who bought them) feel a bit better.
56 roundups and more than 300 games later, you could say that it's been an eventful nine months since we started to focus more of our attention on the downloadable games arena. But when we kicked things off back in March, little did we know just how many great games would fall into our laps.
Oh look! Christmas is nearly here, and you're all sat nervously wondering what the hell to buy for your loved ones as the big day approaches. Well, if you have a partner who finds it exciting to receive the best that mobile gaming has to offer, then allow me to remind you of some of the best that I've had the pleasure of encountering over the past few months.
It's interesting to observe the tactics of Sony and Microsoft in promoting their respective motion gaming technology. While Microsoft tries to position Kinect as something akin to a full console launch, Sony has taken an altogether less aggressive stance.
The Futureheads would have you believe that Christmas was better in the eighties. Not if you were into videogames, it wasn't.