If you’re not hooked on the viral gaming hit du jour then congratulations. Now close this tab before you’re sucked in!

As pick-up-and-go puzzlers go 2048 is simple to play: you’re given a grid with two tiles. You move each tiles around until it touches another of the same value when it merges. After each movement a new tile (typically a ‘4’ or a ‘2’) is added to the mix. The goal is to reach the titular 2048 tile (note: tile, not score).

Inspired by a similar game called ‘Threes’, the original version of 2048 is available to play in any modern web browser and on pretty much every platform going. While this is handy, it’s not ideal. First off, it means you have to run it in a browser tab; secondly, to play it offline you have to save the webpage to your hard drive and, again, open it in web browser to play.

For an elegant solution I heartily recommend 2048 for Chrome. It takes the open-source code of the game, packages it up and makes it available to play offline, in its own window and with its own application launcher.

2048 packaged app for google chrome
Game of the moment ‘2048’ has been packaged up for Google Chrome

While it’s not the only version available for Chrome and through the Web Store, it is one of the best. Not only does it open separate from Chrome, it’s also not loaded down with excessive permissions — in fact, it requires no special permissions at all.

If there is a drawback to be found it’s the lack of ‘restart’ button. To reboot a game you must first close the application and then reopen it.

Download 2048 for Google Chrome

To get your fix of the fiendishly frustrating number game hit the link below.

Install 2048 from the Chrome Web Store

Chrome Apps 2048 gaming