There may not quite be 2048 versions of 2048 yet, but with the original version of this puzzle game being available as an open source project on GitHub, perhaps there will be. One day. Until then, we have tested all of the various 2048 variants and selected 20 of the best of this deliciously addictive puzzler for your delectation.
What Is 2048?
The gem that is 2048 is a simple game with the objective of creating a tile with the value of the titular 2048. To achieve this you have to slide the numbered tiles around on a grid until two tiles of the same value collide, at which point they merge to become one tile with double the value. Keep doing this and you (may) eventually create a 2048 tile.
I describe 2048 as a simple game, but that isn’t strictly true. It’s a simple concept with a confusing gameplay structure and a frustratingly difficult learning curve. But it’s also strangely addictive, as you always know you should be able to finish the game.
I am your productivity’s worst nightmare. http://t.co/zaPLfvCSwK
— Gabriele Cirulli (@gabrielecirulli) March 14, 2014
2048 was created by 19-year-old Gabriele Cirulli over the course of a weekend, and is similar to both Threes and 1024. But 2048 has achieved a virality the games it was inspired by did not. And as the whole thing is open source, 2048 has in turn inspired different versions.
It should be noted that all of the following versions of 2048 are only mildly different than the original. So if you don’t like 2048 there is little chance of you enjoying these variants. Unless you’re a big fan of either Justin Bieber or Flappy Bird.
This is the original version of 2048, though given the “inspired” nature of how it came to be made “original” may be a misnomer. Regardless, this version of the game is played using the arrow keys and is won if and when you create a 2048 tile.
This version adds falling blocks to the 2048 equation, making it like a Tetris for maths geeks.
2048 Multiplayer [No Longer Available]
Playing 2048 alone may be fun, but it would surely be more fun playing against a random stranger. And now you can do just that.
For all those times you have made a silly mistake while playing the original 2048… an undo feature.
All the fun of 2048, but with pictures of Pokemon replacing the numbers. Simple but effective.
All the fun of 2048, but with added Doge goodness. Do well and you’ll even receive some doge-inspired praise.
This is what happens when the visuals of one viral game are blended with the gameplay characteristics of another viral game. And it works rather well too.
In order to win at 2048 you need to multiply the tile values 11 times. This version of the game keeps it simple by using the numbers one through 11.
If you find dealing with the numbers in 2048 difficult then avoid this version, which introduces negative numbers. Guaranteed to make your brain hurt.
Flappy Bird and 2048 are both difficult games to master on their own. And now you can play them at the same time. You can, but you probably shouldn’t.
All the fun of 2048, but with pictures of Dragon Ball Z replacing the numbers.
If you can’t beat 2048 then perhaps you’ll do better preventing the evil AI from beating it.
Do you consider 2048 to be a game for wimps? What you need is 9007199254740992, which takes the concept to its natural conclusion. You’re strongly advised to use the automatic mover unless you want to spend the rest of your life playing this one.
You know you love Justin Bieber. Secretly. Covertly. So why not play a version of 2048 dedicated just to your favorite pop princess.
Turn the square grid into a hexagonal grid, add two extra directions in which you can move, and make the target a lot higher than 2048. Then panic.
Admit it, you love a bit of trolling every now and then. Even if it prevents you from achieving a good score on 2048.
Those regular tiles are so boring. What you want are quantum tiles, which have multiple possibilities until they merge. Yes, it is confusing.
If you’re a fan of what the eggheads are achieving with the Large Hadron Collider then now is your chance to find your own Higgs Boson.
I’ll be honest, this 3D version of 2048 is so difficult to figure out I gave up very quickly. You should definitely persevere with it though.
2048 Winning [No Longer Available]
And finally, a version of 2048 everyone can win. And with just one move too.
You’re probably now sick of 2048 and all of its various clones. I certainly am after spending too long playing each of them during the writing of this article. But just in case you haven’t had enough, you can always try making your own version of 2048. And by adding it to this list maybe this vague dream of mine of playing 2048 different versions of 2048 will come true. Even if it takes until the year 2048 to achieve.
Image Credit: Laineys Repertoire via Flickr