Even more weird Windows 8 apps? We found some

In late December we decided to find some Windows 8 apps that were, for lack of a better word, weird. In February, we went back into the Windows Store and found some more odd apps. It's been a little while since we have make a trek to find Windows 8 apps that are a little left of center, but with the recent rise in the number of published Windows 8 apps lately, we decided to take another look. Not surprisingly, we found some that caught our attention.

Football Throw Stopper

This is a "game" where you have to stop 2D footballs from reaching the end zone by clicking or touching them. It's kind of like Missile Command, but without the fun. We honestly don't know who would enjoy this game. Even animals might think its too silly. Speaking of animals...

The Cat App

The Internet is full of cat pictures and videos, so why not a cat app for Windows 8? The goal is to match cat pictures to the description on a list within 15 seconds. Pretty soon you will be overloaded with cute cat pictures inside your head with this app. Enjoy.

Medieval Weapons of Europe

If you want to see pictures and learn more about how how some of your ancestors killed and maimed each other hundreds of years ago, this app claims to offer just the ticket. There's even a fill-in-the blanks game that gives users a chance to identify which weapon is a Dane ax and which one is just an arming swords.

Cars on Stamps

This app offers people who love cars and people who love stamps something to share together – images of cars that have been placed on stamps all over the world. By the way, Cars on Stamps sounds like a great name for a cool indie band – someone should claim that immediately (you're welcome for the tip).

Amazing Egg Timer

The only thing amazing about this simple timer app is that it has the word "amazing" in its title. If the app were truly amazing, it would also have to tell the user how amazing their egg will be to eat when they finish cooking it with this app.

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LOL if you cooked your egg with that timers current time the only thing you'd be amazed at is how hard that thing would be (almost hard enough to use for amour piercing egg fights)

... Windows 8 apps that are a little left of center ....

This is indicative of what happens when the left tries to do something so they fit in.

It looks bad, doesn't makes sense, and confuses everyone.

MS offered some really good stuff in exchange for apps.
I.e. A Tablet/WP7 device for 8 apps for W8/WP8.
I bet the offer was somehow worldwide.
That's why you have apps like these.... Quantity over quality...

They all look terrible. Visually they're dominated by empty space, flat colours and minimalistic content, like virtually all Metro apps. They look like really bad websites from about fifteen years ago.

Microsoft really needs to change things up with regards to the design tools / guidelines if it hopes to offer any real competition to iOS or Android.

Part of the problem is that people are slavishly sticking to the templates Microsoft provided, just like the early Win32 days where everything looked like Explorer.
Hopefully people will start to come up with innovations in the metro style in good time.

Metro is actually supposed to be beautiful. Unfortunately, it seems like these devs just used the basic generic templates that MS provided as ground work. It's up to the devs to either have a proper UI designer (if they can't do it themselves). There are some beautiful examples (such as all the Bing apps, and concepts from the designer of the Metro UI).

All apps on all platforms start out like this. The first iphone apps were nothing but lists (much like the iOS mail app today). Most apps are still like this, but now they use different colors with icons rather than with what the OS gave you out of the box.

Eventually this will change because 1) people are not used to the UI framework, and it will take a little while for some of the more advanced techniques to filter through the web. 2) There needs to be a few apps released that sets new UI standards that everyone copies. When iPhone apps were first released, there was either a refresh button or it just updated on a timer. A year or so after the first apps were released, the "pull down to refresh" on a list was introduced, and now all list based apps have them. It was not created by Apple, but now iOS 6 did away with the refresh button for this mechanism. We are starting to see Win8 apps with new UI metaphors, and shortly they will be the norm.

The trouble is that even the Microsoft apps are terrible, with the exception of the games (Solitaire, Minesweeper, etc). Of the third-party apps I've tried only a few look decent, with Cocktail Flow being one of the obvious examples. Most websites are better designed than the average Metro app.

The MS apps have gotten better, and remember, it has only been 6 months. Most of the default iOS have nothing special in their UI. Look at the iOS mail app, a list with a panel on the right, and we are 6 years in. The store looks nice, but is a mess to use (of course Apple does most of the work on the part that makes them more money). The clock looks nice, but they "borrowed" most of that design.

Meanwhile apps like OneNote RT has the wheel menu, which compresses many options into a small and usable area. Unfortunately, they do not make a wheel control available, which would work perfectly in my app but since I will be posting it to the store this week, it is a little too late to write my own.

theyarecomingforyou said,
They all look terrible. They look like really bad websites from about fifteen years ago.

That made me laugh out loud. Soo true!

These aren't particularly strange apps...they have a use or are interests of people's. There are much weirder apps out there.