Design has always been at the forefront of the Apple experience. It’s why Steve Jobs wouldn’t let you have a two-button mouse and why iPhone packaging is so clean. The Apple Design Awards continue this tradition, as the Cupertino company recognizes apps that are beautiful and clever. Twelve apps just took home awards for 2017 and they all deserve a spot next to your other essential apps on your iPhone. Here’s a brief look at all the winners:

Blackbox – A puzzle game that makes your world part of the experience. Download 

Splitter Critters – A charming level-based arcade game with incredible sound detail and a paper-craft aesthetic. Download

Mushroom 11 – A strategy game that won an Apple Design Award for its unique alien landscapes, original gameplay, and stunning details. Download

Old Man’s Journey – A puzzle adventure dealing with life, loss, and hope. It packs an emotional narrative rarely seen in a smartphone game. Download

Severed – An intense adventure game with touch and swipe controls. The mechanics are clever and wonderfully functional. Download

Lake – A virtual coloring book packed with tools that elevate it beyond something so basic. Download

Bear – With a list full of time wasters, it’s nice to find something like Bear, a beautifully designed writing app that will help you take notes, make lists, and craft prose. Download

Kitchen Stories – Kitchen Stories is one of the few cooking apps that gets everything right. Helpful videos, tips, and tutorials are all packed in one beautiful app to transform your next home-cooked dinner. Download

Things 3 – An organizational app that’s a joy to use so you can create lists, move tasks, and load your calendar without adding stress to your already busy life. Download

Elk – A currency conversion app that ditches unnecessary elements to deliver something efficient and attractive. Download

Enlight – There are a million and one photo editing apps, but few come close to the expensive programs available for desktop computers. Enlight is one of the few that does, and it does it without bogging you down in confusing details. Download

AirMail 3 – AirMail 3 is an email client that will optimize your email workflow. With deep integration, a snooze feature, and more clever elements, you’ll never go back to tackling email without it. Download


Whether you’re trying to refine your archery skills or just get a leg up on the competition when it comes to office warfare, the BB Sniper mini crossbow from Uncommon Carry will fit the bill. Handmade out of stainless steel and equipped with a self-loading chamber, the BB Sniper is designed to hurl projectiles like toothpicks or mini BBs with surprising accuracy at a range of about 30-50 feet. Make sure to schedule some time for target practice because this addictive little crossbow can do some damage. Have fun, but avoid the sensitive areas.