It’s unclear if Apple realized it was essentially creating a whole new gaming platform when it came up with third-party applications for iOS devices, but that is exactly what has happened. As with the iPhone and iPod Touch before it, the iPad has been flooded with games, and we’re here to help you sort through the thousands of games to help you figure out which ones are really worth bothering to download.

First up we have role-playing and sports games. Who doesn’t like to kill some time while hunting for goblins, or perhaps you prefer to get in a little air hockey?

Please note that developers do change pricing on their apps from time to time, and while these were all free at the time this was written, do double check the price before clicking download.

All links will take you to the iTunes page for more information and a link to download the app.

Top 5 Free iPad Role-Playing Games

Dungeon Hunter

Destination: Treasure Island HD Lite: Set four years after the events of Treasure Island novel, Jim Hawkins has learned of another treasure to go after, but he is being pursued by new enemies, and friends of Long John Silver.  Race against the other pirates to get to the treasure first.

Dungeon Hunter HD FREE: Explore the world of Gothicus after creating your own character to fight monsters, locate weapons and treasure, customize your button layout to suit your needs and more.

Forces of War: This game is online only, but represent your country of choice, master missions, build the ultimate weapons to help you out and challenge people around the world via Game Center comparability.

GraalOnline Classic: An MMORPG with a distinct 8-bit look that lets you kick it old school.  Create your characters, start guilds, go on adventures, build homes and everything else you would expect from a fully featured MMORPG, except you get to enjoy it on your iPad.

Pocket Legends (3D MMO): Now you can play in a full-on MMORPG (massively-multiplayer online role-playing game) without the need of a computer.  Choose your race, go on quests, engage in battle, challenge people from around the world, buy upgrades for your characters and a whole lot more in this 3D adventure game.

Top 5 Free iPad Sports Games

Air Hockey Gold

10 Pin Shuffle (Bowling) Lite: A favorite of many a bar, 10 Pin Shuffle recreates the bowling with discs game we have seen so often in real life, but adds in an aspect of playing poker also.

Air Hockey Gold: Who knew Air Hockey could be so much fun?  A staple of roller rinks and bowling alleys, air hockey on the iPad is fun and addictive, and its compatible with the iOS Game Center.  Play it alone on skill levels from “Kiddie” to “Insane”, play 2-player on the same iPad or match iOS devices against one another.

Crazy Snowboard HD Lite: Get your groove on with this snowboarding game that features unlockables for riders, boards and in-air tricks across multiple challenging courses.

ESPN Map Madness: A bit of trickery from the folks at ESPN with this one.  It’s a mixture of geography and sports trivia as you try to answer questions about the location of college and pro football teams, and the cities they represent.  Great idea for tricking kids into learning the geography of the United States.

Stick Golf HD: Challenge yourself to 108 holes of golf (with more courses added periodically), add wind to make it even tougher and check your high scores both locally and globally.

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