At www.friv.com, you can play many online flash games for free. There are a total of 250 free flash games on the site, laid out on a grid of icons on the home page. When you mouse-over an icon, you will see the title of the game displayed. To play the game, simply click on the icon and begin playing.
In this article, I will describe the game “Red Ball”. This is a game produced by King.com, and its icon is on the 16th column and 11th row on Friv.com right now. The object of the game is to maneuver a small red ball across obstacles to reach a red flag, which is the level objective. To move the ball, there are only 3 buttons you can use, the right arrow (or “D”) to move the ball to the right, the left arrow (or “A”) to move the ball to the left, and the up arrow (or “W”) to make the ball jump up. With these 3 simple movement keys, you can get the ball to jump across holes, speed up and down ramps, and bounce off walls. Along the way, your ball is blocked by obstacles such as holes and spikes that you have to jump across, swinging boulders that push against you, floating platforms that you have to jump on and off, and so on and so forth. Once you reach the flag that marks the level objective, the level is over and you can go onto the next level. There are nearly a hundred levels in ascending difficulty. For some of the longer levels, there is an intermediate checkpoint flag that serves as a save point for your ball. Once you have reached a checkpoint flag, if you die later in the game (say by touching a spike that causes your ball to burst, or by falling off a cliff), you will return to the last checkpoint flag.
In addition to the movement keys, there are several other utility keys that you should know about. If for some reason you want to restart from the beginning of the level, press the “R” key to restart. If you need to grab a bite, pause the game with the “P” key. Finally, if it is time to call it a night, press the “Esc” key to quit.
Despite its apparent simplicity, “Red Ball” is surprisingly addictive. If the game description piques your interest, you can try the free Flash game at http://www.friv.com.