thumb candy
n. A computer game that's all hand-eye coordination with little strategy or thought required.
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The fiercest competition in video games isn't on the screen, it's in toy-store aisles and on e-tailing websites. It's a hostile environment, where fickle teens craving thumb-candy—the latest first-person shooter games pushing the most polygons—decide which game consoles live or die.
—Daffyd Roderick, “Sega's Dream Past?,” Time, January 15, 2001
1994 (earliest)
This, in fact, is precisely what has happened in the past year to the business-side software industry, which has undergone a brutal round of consolidation. But industry watchers are beginning to suspect that may never happen on the entertainment side, which is less dependent on product line megadeals and more geared toward inspired hit titles. Such titles can, and often do, come from obscure, unpredictable Thumb Candy sources. The example software developers like to point to is Doom, a clever 3-D shoot-em-up introduced on the Internet earlier this year by the hitherto unknown Mesquite, Texas-based Id Software.
—Michael Krantz, “Start your content engines,” BRANDWEEK, September 05, 1994
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