January 8

A server-side switch has been flipped to enable a ‘Game of the Day’ feature for some in the latest Chrome Dev and Chrome Canary builds for Android, which promotes Google-made minigames around the web. The new card appears front-and-center on Chrome’s home page, above recommended articles, and below top sites.

It would seem Google is capitalizing on games in Chrome as of late, judging by recent developments surrounding a chrome://games page and a build of the classic Snake for the browser. The beginning of this new wave of game-related features has now landed—a rotating ‘Game of the Day’ for users to discover and play each morning.

For users with the experiment enabled, a card will appear on Chrome’s new tab page under the “Articles for you” collection. A fun header image will also decorate each title, displaying above a “Play Now” button that takes you to the game’s URL on the web. To find these games without the feature enabled, a quick Google search of the game’s name will bring up an interactive card or a link to the archived version.

Chrome's Game of the Day card showing up on the new tab page.

The games are sourced from online-hosted collections Google offers, like past Google Doodles and Google Search’s ‘Games & Toys’ collection (tap the down arrow). It isn’t clear whether the local chrome://dino game will be included in future selections, but the addition of chrome://games may see an offline games lineup added. Nevertheless, Game of the Day makes for a fun little pastime.

A screenshot of Ghost Rush as Google's chosen Game of the Day.

Today’s Game of the Day offering from Google is the Minesweeper game built into Google Search, which follows yesterday’s brief revival of the popular Ghost Rush doodle from Halloween 2018. Both are great ways to pass a few minutes (or lose a few hours), and now games like them will be within a tap’s reach.

It’s a feature that wasn’t necessarily asked for, but may pan out to be a popular perk of the Chrome browser. Here’s a picture of me losing Minesweeper on easy mode, because I am a gamer:

A screenshot of Google's Game of the Day today: Minesweeper. The game is ending.

Game of the Day’s simplicity sounds like a combination that could be deadly in a good way, and once Chrome’s suite of gaming-related features roll out, it could become an unexpected center for people with too much time to spare. With the precedent that the iconic Dino game set for Chrome, a full lineup of games on Chrome would be the bored person’s heaven. We look forward to seeing how game features like these improve Chrome, and hope to see them arrive on other platforms eventually.

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