Windows Central Roundup

There are thousands and thousands of Windows Phone apps available over in the Windows Phone Store.  To supplement our app and game reviews, our Windows Phone Central Roundups are designed to give quick snapshots of apps and games that we may not get to fully review.  Most of these roundups follow a common theme such as Spy Apps, Photo Editing Apps, Target Games, and Ninja Games.

While we put together a small collection of these apps and games, our Roundups are also an opportunity for our readers to offer their recommendations on apps and games of the same genre.

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Windows Central Roundup: Popular Windows Phone Holiday Apps and Games

Tis the season to be jolly and there are a boatload of Windows Phone games and apps available in the Store to help bring in the Holiday Spirit. From apps that countdown the time to games that feature the jolly old elf, the Windows Phone Store is quickly seeing Holiday apps and games popping up on the shelves.

We scoured the Windows Phone Store aisles for a handful of the top rated Holiday apps and games for this week's Windows Phone roundup. We'll also toss in a few games that are popular year round but recently received an update to give the title a little Holiday spirit.

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Windows Central Roundup: Top Rated Windows Phone Action/Adventure Games

Casual gaming on your Windows Phones has its merit. Word and puzzle games can have a laid back feel that can help you pass the time and exercise your brain. While there is a certain appeal to the slower paced games, we all need a little fast-paced action from time to time. Enter the Action/Adventure aisle of the Windows Phone Store.

For this week's roundup, we combed through the Action/Adventure section of the Windows Phone Store and pulled out five of the higher rated games from the Store's shelves. Some are more action packed than others but all should appeal to our need for strategy and action gaming. For added measure, I'll add a few personal favorites that you may want to try as well.

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Windows Central Roundup: Top Disney Windows Phone Games

Over the past few years, Disney has quietly built a nice collection of games in the Windows Phone Store. They stand out in part because of the popularity the main characters that inspire these games as well as the quality of the games themselves.

We sifted through the twenty some odd Disney games currently available in the Windows Phone Store and plucked half a dozen of the top rated titles to highlight in this week's roundup. All can be entertaining titles to have in your Windows Phone gaming library to help you pass the time and cure that video game itch.

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Windows Central App Roundup: Windows Phone Shopping Apps

Even though many retailers got a jump on things this year, yesterday marked the traditional beginning of the Holiday Shopping Season. Deals will be popping up all over the place over the next few weeks and there are plenty of Windows Phone apps in the Store that can help you sort it all out.

The Windows Phone Store has a Collection of apps to help make choosing the right app a little easier. The Holiday Shopping Collection has a few dozen apps to help you shop online, keep track of those discount cards, find deals and more. We've plucked four of the top rated apps from this Collection for this week's roundup, plus a few that are outside the Collection.

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Windows Central App Roundup: Top Rated Windows Phone camera apps

This week's Windows Central roundup is going to take on a slightly different twist. We want to know what your favorite Windows Phone camera alternative is. The native Windows Phone camera app is a capable camera app but we also have several equally capable alternatives in the Windows Phone Store. We will highlight some of the more popular choices and at the end of the roundup, we have a reader's poll to see what you guys and gals think.

These are Windows Phone photography apps that are camera apps first and editors second. We aren't including apps that are focused on photo-editing (even though you can launch a camera app from within) such as Photoshop Express, Fhotoroom, Fantasia Painter, Black and others. All are fine titles in the Windows Phone Store but we are looking at apps that can replace the native Windows Phone camera app.

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Windows Central Roundup: New and Rising Windows Phone Games

For those not familiar, the Windows Phone Store has a category of apps and games that highlights new and rising titles. If you are curious what new games and apps are on Store shelves that are gaining popularity, this is a good area of the Store to visit.

For this week's roundup, we have plucked four gaming titles from this aisle of the Store to showcase. Each title has a Store rating of at least four stars and includes a pair of racing games, an endless runner game and a casino title. There are a ton of quality titles in the New and Rising section of the Windows Phone Store and hopefully this small sampling will catch someone's eye.

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Windows Phone Game Roundup: Hidden Object Games

For those not familiar, the Windows Phone Store has combed through the hundreds of thousands of apps and games to create a series of Collections to help users get started in the right direction. You have Collections for voice command apps, photo apps, Disney games, racing games and more.

This week's Windows Central roundup is going to focus on the Hidden Object Games Collection. These titles offer a casual approach to gaming and call upon you to find objects hidden in plain sight, much as you would find in a game of I Spy. While the games lack fast paced action, they can still present their fair share of challenges. They test your powers of observation, patience and most will throw in a few mysteries to solve along the way.

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Fishing is a fantastic way to spend the day but with the Seasons changing and temperatures dropping, the opportunity to spend an afternoon on the lake may not still be available for many. For those who are itching to try their hand at hooking the catch of the day during the colder months (or at least pretending to), there is a small collection of Windows Phone games available in the Store.

We've pulled four of the top rated fishing games from the Windows Phone Store for this week's roundup and while some of the titles approach fishing from a non-traditional approach, all are decent games to pass the time with.

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Windows Central App Roundup: Windows Phone Halloween apps and games

'Tis the season where pumpkins are carved up, kids and adults alike begin hunting for the perfect costume and bags of candy begin to fly off store shelves. In the spirit of the Halloween season, this week's roundup will focus on apps and game that give our Windows Phone a ghostly flavor.

We did a keyword search in the Windows Phone Store for Halloween and grabbed a few of the higher rated apps and games from the search results. We aren't including Zombie games because they are more of a year round genre. We do have a few games that have been recently updated with a Halloween theme as well as a few apps that can help your Windows Phone get into the holiday spirit.

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My Top Windows Phone Weather Apps

Windows Phone Central App Roundup: Weather Apps

Weather apps seem to multiply faster than a burrow full of rabbits and are one of the more populated genres of apps in the Windows Phone Store. You have feature rich apps that not only deliver the current and extended forecasts but also live weather radar, weather videos and the ability to track the weather for a friend's location. Some can add your current weather conditions to photos and others are more minimal in nature.

The choice as to which likely boils down to personal preference and for this week's roundup, I'll toss out my top Windows Phone weather apps. Now before you break out the pitchforks, light the torches and begin posting "How could you miss (insert weather app title here)!", these are titles that I find myself relying on in my day to day activities. There is a huge selection of quality weather apps available in the Windows Phone Store and if I don't mention your favorite, there's nothing nefarious afoot.

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