WHILE SOME HARDCORE PC and console gamers might deride and eschew them, the fact remains that app games are huge these days, even outselling traditional handheld consoles.
Since so many people are getting their gaming fix on mobile devices, we thought we’d have a look at the best app games ever.
1. ANGRY BIRDS
Given it’s the top-selling app of all time, Angry Birds feels like as good a place to start as any. I would explain the game, but I’m sure you’ve played it and seen the sprawling merchandising machine behind it. Maybe you even own some of it yourself — they’ve licensed Angry Birds to everything at this point.
Truth is, we’ve all played the game and we’ve all dug it. It’s hard not to like smashing things. People have enjoyed it so much that there have been four sequels, they have even expanded it to consoles and PC, and the game has been downloaded over 1 billion times.
Sure, we don’t know what made those birds so pissed in the first place, but not being able to kill all the pigs sure gets my goat up, so maybe that’s what the name is all about.
2. THE WALKING DEAD: THE GAME
Proving that you can have console-quality games on mobile devices, The Walking Dead: The Game is as much fun to play—thanks in large part to great touchscreen controls—on your phone or tablet as it is on your PC pr home console.
And yes, it was available on all platforms. With a focus on character development and plot over puzzles or combat, the game is tailored to each player through the choices they make and dialogue they engage in the game was a huge hit.
The episodic format reminiscent of the comic books the game is based on had fans waiting each month for the next release.
But give the game made over 80 “game of the year” lists the wait was never in vain.
3. RAVENSWORLD: SHADOWLANDS
Expansive, open-world RPGs aren’t the kinds of games you expect to find for your phone or tablet. They’re usually exclusively available for PC, or to a lesser extent on consoles. Yet Ravensworld: Shadowlands proves the genre can work—and work well—on mobile devices.
It offers everything a good RPG should—except maybe mission icons on the map—namely, customization. You can outfit your hero in shops, or through expropriations on fallen enemies or treasure chests, there are a wide variety of weapons to select: Bows, axes, swords, etc.
And the way you play the game allows your character to develop skills to be better at playing your preferred style. While the game is certainly not as expansive or the quest as lengthy as in traditional PC RPGs—it’s only about 40 hours—and it doesn’t look as sharp due to graphic limitations, but it is still a fantastic game for any fan of the genre to get their fix on long commutes.
Just be warned, the in-app purchases are awfully tempting.
4. THE SIMPSONS: TAPPED OUT
A classic example of a “freemium” game, one that you can download for nothing but which becomes impossible to complete without making in-app purchases.
For the uninitiated, The Simpsons Tapped Out is similar to the sims. You create your own Springfield, buying buildings and unlocking characters as you gain XP. Donuts are currency in the game, and earning donuts takes time and tapping. Unless, of course, you’d like to buy some, with real-world money. YOUR money.
The immense popularity of this game, combined with the immense reluctance of many gamers to part with their money, has led to many sites out there which offer cheats and hacks of the game in order to give users more, or even unlimited, donuts.
But as the game’s developers, IronMonkey and EA Mobile, don’t seem to be trying to stop this, there must be plenty of users paying their way to the premium content.
5. CLASH OF THE CLANS
Clash of the Clans is of the biggest games on the planet in 2013–PERIOD–let alone just on smart devices. If you aren’t playing this game already chances are you know a bunch of folk who are.
Supercell, the game’s Finnish maker, is earning over 2.4 million dollars a day off of Clash of the Clans and another title, Hay Day.
The game itself is nothing new. It’s an online multiplayer strategy game, not unlike WoW, only it’s for iOS and it’s really well done. Players build villages and train warriors and go out to loot and plunder from other players to build up their own village and supplies and keep up defenses at home.
Of course you’re welcome to pay extra to speed up the process.
There is a whole range of fantastic character types, different troops with different strengths and abilities, a large number of different types of buildings available, and, of course, spells.
What would a fantasy-based game be without spells?