2015 was a great year for gaming on the go, bar the countless micro-transaction-riddled titles that better resemble glorified slot machines. Mobile platforms are brimming with unique interactive experiences perfect for portable play. These are the 10 best, all of which you’d do well to download over the festive break.
10. Does Not Commute
Organizing a city of commuters might not sound like your idea of fun, but this slickly designed driving game will make your own journey to work considerably more bearable.
9. The Executive
A beat-em-up brawler perfectly designed for touch screen devices, The Executive packs plenty of punch into a small screen. Over the top action and a suave sense of style ensures its status as a mobile essential.
8. Fallout Shelter
Announced on the same day as Fallout 4, this vault-management sim provided the perfect distraction to tide us over until our return to the wasteland in earnest.
Supergiant Games’ follow up to their indie breakout hit Bastion traded vibrant fantasy-inspired landscapes for neon-drenched, circuit-board plazas. It’s bold, beautiful, highly strategic, narratively intriguing and well worth your time.
6. The Room Three
The Room games are the stuff touch screens were created for. If you enjoy dismantling intricate artifacts with the swipe of a finger, solving cryptic clues and devious puzzles along the way, then this won’t disappoint.
5. Broken Age
Stunning hand drawn backgrounds, a delightful cast of characters, smartly designed puzzles and snort-inducing dialogue all make Broken Age an instant classic. Once you plunge into this eccentirc world you won’t want to leave. Oh, and did I mention that Jack Black, Wil Wheaton and Elijah Wood are in it, because they are!
4. Lara Croft Go
It’s great to see developers adapting their blockbuster franchises FOR PHONES, rather than cramming a cheap imitation of the console version onto a 6 inch screen. Lara Croft Go is a treat on mobile, perfect for those quick 5 minute bus journeys, or unexpected 20 minute toilet stints.
3. Alto’s Adventure
This alpine adventure both looks and plays the part, providing fun, arcadey snowboarding action against the beautifully minimalistic backdrop of apres towns and frost-covered forests.
2. Her Story
Made by former Silent Hill alumni, Her Story is an interactive tale like no other. It asks you to sift through police interrogation videos to cross check witness accounts and solve a gripping mystery. No other game made me feel like a hard boiled detective, and even had me filling pages of my notebook with scrawled observations and theories.
This year I lost countless hours getting on wrong trains, lingering on toilets and bumoing into passers by, all because of Downwell. This simple yet compulsive rougelike is brutally unforgiving, but once you get the hang of its ultra precise controls you’ll be racking up double digit combos in no time. Withoit a doubt, this was the best way to kill time on your phone in 2015.