Strategy RPGs and Tactical RPGs are an admittedly niche market. The game play tends to be slower because it focuses more on strategy than it does on sheer action. They operate with a turn-based style of combat and feature a chessboard style map where you move units into tactically advantageous positions to gain the upper hand. There aren’t many available on Android, but some of them are truly excellent. Here are the best strategy RPGs and tactical RPGs on Android!
- You can play some classic old strategy RPGs on emulators. Here are the best emulators for Android!
- This list is strictly strategy RPGs. If you want to see our selections for the best overall RPGs, click here!
The Banner Saga is one of the most beautifully done strategy RPGs that we’ve seen on mobile. It’s a port of the PC version of the game and features a branching storyline, 25 playable characters, seven different classes, and plenty of ways to upgrade and enhance your characters. What makes this game interesting is that it’s one of only a few tactical RPGs that has real consequences for losing battles. Sometimes, that includes the permanent loss of characters in some situations. At $4.99, it’s less expensive than when it first came out and there are no in-app purchases to get in the way.
[Price: Free with in app purchases]
Brave Brigade is one of an increasing number of strategy RPGs that employ the freemium model. This one happens to be one that isn’t all that bad. It has well-done graphics that do a good job of hiding the chessboard aspect of tactical RPGs. You’ll also get to choose your main hero, collect over 200 other playable characters, engage in PVP tournaments, and you can team up with friends to take on things like raid bosses or other challenging battles. It has a lot of card collecting mechanics and the in-app purchases reflect this, but otherwise it’s a pretty decent little game.
[Price: $0.99 each with in app purchases]
Dotomchi Games has some of the more successful strategy RPGs on mobile. They have a quartet of games in their “Fortune” series, including Rebirth of Fortune, Sorceress of Fortune, Mystery of Fortune, and Defense of Fortune 2. These represent the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh games in the series respectively and we don’t know what happened to the first three. They all employ a similar graphical and gameplay style except Defense of Fortune 2, which uses a more tower defense oriented style. All four games are $0.99 with in-app purchases which isn’t the most preferable, but they are still pretty fun.
Square Enix released Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions and it was instantly one of the best strategy RPGs out there. The game was originally relased on Playstation in 1997 and then again on the Sony PSP in 2007 before being released again on mobile. It features a long, story-driven campaign complete with video cut scenes. There are also a variety of characters that you can play with and Square Enix has added additional cut scenes, scenarios, and jobs for your characters to learn. The only caveat is that players on budget devices seem to be having some crashing issues on certain missions, so make sure to read through the customer reviews before dropping $13.99 on the game.
[Price: $1.99 or $2.99]
The Shadowrun series are strategy RPGs that are based on an old tabletop game from the late 1980’s. The two versions that are available on Android are Shadowrun Returns and Shadowrun: Dragonfall Director’s Cut. Both of them follow a cyberpunk fantasy format where you’ll have things like elves and magic, but it takes place is pseudo-futuristic, dystopian cities. The games both boast long single-player campaign modes, various character classes, tons of weapons and armor, and more. Neither game has in-app purchases, which is good news. The only caveat is that both games haven’t been updated in awhile so your mileage may vary when it comes to things like bugs.
[Price: $3.99 with in app purchases]
Heroes of Steel is easily one of the most underrated strategy RPGs on Android. The developers boast a four-episode story that adds up to about 120+ hours of gameplay with no grinding required so you won’t be finishing this one anytime soon. The game features charming, retro-style graphics, character customization, tons of equipment to collect, and more. Between its long story and complete character control, this is a deep game that serious tactical RPG fans should thoroughly enjoy. The game costs $3.99 with $0.99 in-app purchases for each of the remaining three episodes (you get the first upon purchase of the game).
[Price: $6.49 or $7.99]
HyperDevBox Studios was one of the first studios to take tactical and strategy RPGs seriously on mobile. They have a handful of tactical RPG titles, including Spectral Souls, Blazing Souls, and Record of Agarest. They operate more or less the same with, with decent, PlayStation 1-style graphics, typical strategy RPG mechanics, and a story-driven campaign. They boast tons of game play (over 100 hours for Blazing Souls alone), special combat mechanics such as the ability to chain skills, and they should all come with hardware (MOGA) controller support. Spectral and Blazing Souls clock in at $6.49 with no in-app purchases while Record of Agarest is $7.99 with in-app purchases.
[Price: Free / $4.89 each]
Kingturn is a series of strategy RPGs that have made a good name for themselves. They feature simplistic graphics that aren’t the best, but the developers more than make up for it with lengthy, story-driven campaigns. The two main games in the series have more than 130 missions combined and include a ton of character classes, abilities, items, gear, and more. It’s not the most complex series of games out there. However, they do have a faster pace than most and neither game contains in-app purchases.
[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Phantom of the Kill is another freemium strategy RPG that isn’t half bad. The game features over 50 playable characters which you can collect. There is also a fairly basic, but entertaining storyline for players to play through. The game boasts Playstation 1-era graphics along with anime-style cutscenes, both of which set it apart from other freemium titles. There is also an online PVP mode where you can battle people. It’s not an overly remarkable title, but all of its elements are solid and that makes it worth a try at least.
[Price: Free with in-app purchases]
Terra Battle is a unique tactical RPG that does things a little bit differently. The core mechanics are the same as other strategy RPGs, but with scaled back graphics and faster battle mechanics. There are also things like bonus items on the map to give you an advantage over your opponent. Like most, you’ll still have various characters and classes that you can collect, upgrade, and customize. Terra Battle boasts hundreds of game maps and hundreds of characters to collect. Perhaps best of all, the music is composed by Nobuo Uematsu who is best known for doing the compositional work on Final Fantasy (up through Final Fantasy 10). It’s a freemium game with typical freemium elements which seems to be one of the only bad things about the game.
Related best app lists:
- Use that strategic mind of yours to tackle the best tower defense games on Android!
- Or check out some of the best strategy games on Android, period!
If we missed any of the best tactical RPGs or Strategy RPGs for Android, tell us about them in the comments!To see our complete list of best app lists, click here.