The 5 best games to play with your Sphero

the Sphero remote control sphere is a device dedicated to the idea of fun. Driving it around is a blast, but because there are so many different things you can do with your Sphero it can sometimes be difficult to know where to start. There are about a dozen different games and apps you get get that involve Sphero in some way, but the quality of the programs varies widely from one to the next. It's also a fantastic toy for inventing your own games and activities, if you're inclined to do so. To help you get started as a new Sphero user, here are five of the best games to play with your new spherical friend.

#5 Sharky the Beaver

This free augmented-reality app turns your Sphero into an animated beaver wearing a shark fin on his back. Driving the Sphero moves the beaver around, and it's surprisingly fun to look at your tablet and see a cartoon character standing on your kitchen table. This is a great way to introduce new users and kids to the Sphero, since it's less about fast reflexes and skillful driving and more about just having fun.

You can find more information about Sharky in this official video.

#4 Just drive it!

This seems like a no-brainer, but the basic driving application for Sphero is so impressive that it deserves special recognition. The graphical and audio presentation is superb and the quest/level-up mode is great. Orbotix, creators of the Sphero and the driving app, could have gotten away with something much more bare-bones for day-to-day driving, but instead they went all out and made something that's charming and cool.

#3 Exileexile 2

There are a few different games available that use the Sphero as a kind of 3D arcade joystick, but most of them are more trouble than they are worth. Exile is the exception. In Exile you use your Sphero to control a spaceship flying around and firing at enemies in a slick-looking top-down air combat game. Your ship is constantly firing, so all you need to do is focus on flying -- which is good, because controlling the ship isn't easy. Tilting the Sphero moves you left and right and up and down, with more extreme tilts moving you more rapidly. At the same time, you rotate the Sphero to change the direction you are facing and firing. It takes some getting used to, but after playing a few levels it starts to feel surprisingly natural. It won't take long before you're dodging past enemies while simultaneously spinning your ship around, twisting and turning and firing all at the same time.

#2 Pass the Sphero

This 99 cent app provides a fun take on "hot potato," and uses the Sphero in a creative way. Players sit in a circle and one begins by holding the Sphero, which is now a "bomb" that will explode after a random, secret duration. Each player holds the Sphero as long as they dare, while a loud ticking sounds builds up the tension. You earn points for each second you spend holding the Sphero, but if it explodes while you are holding it you get zero points for that round!

Pass the Sphero is a fantastic party game, and is guaranteed to have your group laughing in no time.

#1 Obstacle course racing

The best way to have fun with your Spheor is also one of the simplest. Just open the driving app, set up an obstacle course around the house, and then take turns completing it as fast as possible. The Sphero is a tough little thing, so don't worry about starting the course on the couch or table and then jumping off onto the floor. Set up some cups the Sphero has to weave around and make the finish line a solid crash into a designated wall. Everyone will want a turn to try to get the best time, and the Sphero will quickly become the life of the party.

These are just a few suggestions for how to get the most out of your Sphero. If you have other ideas that you'd like to share, please let us know in the comments!