Gaming on Android has been rapidly improving over the last couple of years. Gone are the days where the best of the best are simple puzzle games. Now, there are near-console quality games available on Android that provide more than just a moment of distraction. Those puzzle games have also improved to keep up with the latest trends and graphics. So below are some of the best games for Android.
First is the obligatory hat tip to the first really popular game on Android. With over a billion downloads to date in total and a fairly good rating on the Google Play Store, it’s difficult to find someone who hasn’t played these games. Rovio has more than half a dozen games in the series and they all play pretty much the same way. They have added better graphics, more game play features, and more levels as time goes so the experience has only become more enjoyable. Some may say the game series is dated, but you really can’t argue with a billion downloads.
Another World was once called Out Of This World and was originally released in 1991. The game was recreated and ported to Android with better graphics and full touch screen support. It’s a fairly difficult 2D shooter/puzzle game where you play a scientist who gets warped into, well, another world. It’s a great game to have if you’re into retro gaming and will remain a gem on Android just like it was a gem back in 1991.
Gameloft really hit a home run with their Asphalt series. They have increasingly good graphics, fun game play, and each new iteration adds more features. The most current is Asphalt 8: Airborne, which includes Google Play Games achievements and a live multiplayer mode. It used to cost money but recently they switched to a Freemium model (Free to play with in-app purchases). Some like it, some don’t, but it’s still a fun game to play.
Like other games on this list, The Bard’s Tale is a port of a much older game. The original Bard’s Tale was released in 1985 and was considered a cult classic. The port is an amazing reproduction that includes updated graphics and optimizations so it can be enjoyed on Android. This witty RPG boasts around 20-30 hours of game play and for an Android game that’s really good. It’s received honors by a number of gaming blogs for being good. There are also two options, a standard definition and high definition package (selectable when you open the app) so if you have the extra space, you can play a better looking game.
Candy Crush Saga isn’t the most complicated game out there, but a whole bunch of people seem to love it. It’s a simple puzzle game that gets progressively harder but there is a very strong social component that will either have you loving the interaction or hating the constant requests on Facebook. It does boast 400 levels so there is more than enough content to keep you and the hundred million other players going for a long time.
Clash of Clans is one of many MMO-RTS games but it is by far one of the best. In this real time strategy, you play as a clan chief who must build up your village to defend it from raiders. Raiders are, consequently, other real people who play the game and you can raid their villages too. There are clans you can join so you can play with others and there is always something to do. If you like social gaming, do yourself a favor and pick this one up.
CSR Racing is actually more of a sim game than an actual racer. You play as a racer trying to make it to the top by performing drag races against gangs of riders. It’s a fairly simple premise and the game itself is pretty simple once you get the hang of it. That said, there is a lot of content, better than average graphics, and beating this game will take some time for most people. There is also an online component where people race against others to win rare cars and in-game currency.
In this cutesy puzzle game, you must hack ropes and use various obstacles and powers to feed an adorable little green monster some candy. It sounds simple enough right? Well, after the first dozen levels or so it can get quite complicated but it never seems to lose its original charm. This game has received a plethora of awards and when it comes to puzzle games, it does stand out from the competition. There are also multiple installments of Cut the Rope so you can keep playing even after you’ve been this one.
One of the best ways to game on Android is to play games that we loved as kids. This can be accomplished with emulators. A couple of years ago, emulators were buggy, barely usable apps that let the very fortunate play their favorite games at full speed. These days, emulators are much more polished and very usable for just about everyone. Using them, you can play your favorite games from the SNES, PlayStation, N64, NES, Game Boy Advance, and other consoles. There is no one app here as each console has its own emulator, so we recommend you check out our best emulator apps for Android list to see the best ones! Do note, this is the only way to play classics like Legend of Zelda or Pokemon on Android.
The original Dead Trigger was a big deal. It was one of the best zombie games out there and one of the best shooters. In a world where both of those genres are dramatically over-saturated, being the best in those areas is a high compliment. Dead Trigger 2 came out and it was head and shoulders above its predecessor. It has great graphics, a much more competent story mode, and a lot more unlockable content. It is free, but it does have in-app purchases, which some people apparently despite but thankfully you don’t need to buy anything to have fun.
Even though the sport hasn’t really caught on in the US, soccer is a wildly popular sport pretty much everywhere else. When it comes to soccer, FIFA 14 is the best that you can do. It has decent graphics, easy game play, and a lot of content. l6,000 players from 600 teams in 33 countries, to be exact. Like many, this is a Freemium game so you can pick it up for free. There’s not much else to it. If you like soccer, this is the best.
If any game studio has taken advantage of the retro gaming trend on Android, it’s Square Enix. They have been working tirelessly to bring all of their old Final Fantasy games to Android. This includes Final Fantasy 1 through Final Fantasy 5 (so far) along with the sequel to Final Fantasy 4, Chrono Trigger, and an original Final Fantasy in Final Fantasy Dimensions. If you like Final Fantasy, any one of these games is worth your time. Hit the button to see Square Enix’s entire game library. Beware, they are a tad expensive.
In this action/arcade game, you play as Barry who breaks into a secret laboratory and appropriates a jet pack. This is a 2D side-scroller where you must use your jet pack to avoid obstacles while constantly moving forward. There are a variety of vehicles and power ups to help you along. The graphics are cartoon-y but that’s not necessarily a bad thing and the game play is genuinely fun and addictive. Also, it’s free.
Kingdom Rush is a budding game franchise that people have really grabbed a hold of. It is a tower defense game and one of the highest rated, most popular ones out there. The original Kingdom Rush was a hit and the next iteration, Kingdom Rush Frontiers, is even better. It has a lot of content, a long campaign mode, and challenging game play. It’s deceptively addictive and if you’re into tower defense games, you probably won’t be able to play just one round.
Sports games on Android haven’t quite taken off like other genres have. At least no yet. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t good sports games out there and Madden NFL 25 is one of them. It’s one of the very few games that even has every team. It also has decent graphics, good game play, and a decent amount of content. If you like American football, this is that game you should try out. It is a Freemium game, so there is that. Otherwise, it’s really good.
Minecraft was already a popular game before it showed up on Android and it’s gotten more popular since. It’s been in the top 5 best paid games for Android in the Google Play Store for well over a year now. There’s a reason and it’s because Minecraft is awesome. In this completely customizable game, you build tings, mine things, kill things, and do all sorts of other things. With enough creativity, the sky is the limit. It’s a tad pricier than many others on this list but millions believe it’s worth every penny and that includes us.
Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour may be a little dated in comparison to many of these other offerings, but don’t let its age fool you. It’s a fun first person shooter with pretty decent graphics and an actual story line. It came out in an era where first person shooters were making that big step from being playable to being legitimately good and it continues to be good even today. It’s still a little pricy at $6.99 and we know Modern Combat 5 is coming eventually. Until then, this is still a great game to have.
Osmos HD is a deceptively awesome game. When you just look at it, you see you control a little mote that must absorb smaller motes to become larger and, thus, absorb larger motes. In reality, this incredibly challenging brain teaser is both beautiful and fun. With the ambient music and variable speed game play (determined by user), you can literally spend an hour on a single level before you beat it and enjoy every minute of it. It’s a truly unique gaming experience and one you shouldn’t miss.
Plants vs Zombies 2 was one of the most hyped games to come out this year and is just as popular as its predecessor. The premise of this game is simple. You grow plants to stop the zombie invasion. The graphics won’t compete for the best but that doesn’t affect the game’s easy mechanics and addictive content. It is a time waster, like Angry Birds, so don’t expect miracles there. If you have five minutes to kill, there are few better games to kill it with than Plants vs Zombies 2.
Riptide GP2 was one of the first big releases following the Google Play Games services release. As such, it has achievements, online multiplayer, and cloud saves. It also happens to be one of the best racing games period for Android. It is challenging, it has great graphics, and it’s a fairly unique premise for a racing game. We’ve long touted how this is one of our favorite games around the newsroom and it definitely deserves to be on this list.
The Room is a challenging puzzle game that’s a little different than the other puzzle games on the list. You move around a giant box and have to find secrets in its architecture that let you unlock things. As you unlock things, you learn more about the box. This game has really nice graphics but the game play is a little shorter. If you don’t mind the $2 price tag, this is a great game to pick up and spend an afternoon or two playing through.
Many people didn’t even know there was a Sims game available for Android, but there definitely is. It’s called The Sims FreePlay and as the name implies, you can play the game for free. If you’ve played any Sims game before, you know how this game works. You essentially play God in the life of a person you create. This game centers around teenagers rather than full adults, but the basic things that makes the Sims great is there.
Temple Run was one of the original popular games for Android and pretty much everyone knows how it works. You run forever trying to avoid obstacles, collect items, and otherwise keep running forward. The series has two games, Temple Run 1 and 2, along with a metric ton of offshoots that borrow the same game mechanics. It’s iconic, even if the game type is fairly simple and the graphics are fairly basic. Also, both games are free!
World of Goo is the last puzzle game on our list and it’s also one of the best. In this game you must build a structure that reaches a pipe to suck up the excess goo. In order to get the max score, you must use as few moves as possible so the pipe sucks up the most possible goo. It’s fun and genuinely thought provoking. It also offers a number of fun activities to play outside of the main game like the freestyle build mode. It also has Google Play Games achievements. That’s a home run.
Zombie Highway is a long time favorite here at Android Authority and, of course, we believe it belongs on a list like this. Much like Temple Run, Zombie Highway is based around moving forward infinitely. You must avoid obstacles and fend off zombies to see how far you can drive. You can remove zombies by scraping them off on the obstacles and with unlockable guns. For such a simple game, you’ll be heavily engaged pretty much the whole time you play it. Also, it’s now free and it used to be worth $.99. So now is the best time to pick it up.
Call of Duty: Strike Team is actually one of the newer games on the list and it’s pretty good. It’s a first person shooter most of the time, but there are scenes and modes where you can play with the third person camera view. Included with Call of Duty: Strike Team is impressive visuals, a campaign mode, a survival mode, and a variety of features in terms of game play. It is a bit pricy like some of the other games on the list but you do get what you pay for. Unfortunately, the only real thing lacking is device support and the developers promise that’s coming soon.
Wow, you actually got this far! Rest assured, you can count on us to work hard to deliver you the very best apps and games for Android. We’ll be adding the very best games for Android as they hit the Google Play store. What are your favorite games for Android?
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I think the best racing game is Need for Speed Most Wanted.
Real Racing 3. 200 hours but not a single dime spent, realistic graphics, incredibly responsive handling and perfectly challenging difficulty. What it says: it’s real racing.
But let’s not make it a fanboy war: how about naming Type:Rider, a gorgeous and intuitive platformer with the best audiovisual design of any game I’ve played on a mobile.
I just tried out real racing 3, and you are right. It is absolutely amazing in terms of reality and handling, but I still like NFS because you don’t have to repair cars.
Played it several times
I only wish it had a cop mode
Im with you there. No racing game has beaten NFS: Most Wanted yet on the play store
exactly, I also love the game.
I got from http://www.apk4.org
hey and where is zombie Evil???
Zombie games are boring except for Dead Trigger.
Emulator games are awesome. I’m playing Pokemon Fire Red at the moment.
Pokemon White 2 here. DraStic cheats allows me to get Pikachu on my team (yay), along with fire starter across generation, Charmander, Tepig, Cyndaquil (lol).
Pokemon game is fun if you able to get ALL 600+ pokemon to date in a single game.
Minecraft is my favorite game! It features local-server multiplayer.
Into the Dead is a great time killer for me. Killing zombies with a variety of weapons and trying to beat my high score is just what I need during my morning transit.
Real Racing 3?
I love Asphalt 8. Smashing all other cars and flying way up in the air are so much fun. My Lambor Urus also looks gorgeous. xD
Please try Star Warfare: Alien Invasion! It’s epic!
just dont upgrade 100 Crypts if you have previously installed it ,it ads some nasty pop ups on ! ,Osmos & Contre Jour are my favs.
didnt read the rest after i see candy crush
Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean it isn’t any good. Over a hundred million people play it and like it so it has to be doing something right.
where is amazing alex
Mine is GTA 3 10th Anniversary and Emulators.
I’m not a huge gamer but I really like the original Dead Trigger and Tank Hero. Also, Angry Birds is the most overhyped game ever.
i would say this is a “personal” top 26 games for android. :) we all have different choices of games but maybe they did base this top picks on game ratings(?)
I have at least half and this list is right on the money. I just love the great devs out there big and small making great games!
Dead trigger 2 is THE most amazing game I have ever played on Android… Can’t believe it’s free. Angry birds, candy crush saga, clash of clans are overrated. Despicable Me: minion rush and sonic dash are the best running games. Plants vs zombies 2 was nice too. Minecraft PE isn’t bad either.
Candy Crush is good but I like something more simple and clean like Tiles Break