We’ve compiled a list of the best Android games to help you navigate the Play Store’s myriad titles. Join us as we explore various game genres and present all the best titles to install on your Android phone or tablet in 2017. Let’s go!
Best Android sports games
Sports games are a tricky beast that usually take lots of hours of practice refining those skills. They’re also likely dictated by the sort of sports you like, so if soccer is your game, you’ll want to check out Fifa’s latest instalment and if basketball or baseball or more your speed, there are big name franchises to check out there too. What we’ve offered below are a couple of suggestions that should be fun for everyone, whatever sports you like.
Golf Clash is one of the newer games on this list, but while it hasn’t been around for too long, it’s already attracted a lot of dedicated players.
As with any other golf game, the aim is pretty clear, but rather than put you through a time-consuming 9 or 18-hole round, all games take place against other real players and last just one hole. If you both take the same number of shots sinking the ball, you then need to win a one-shot closest to the pin shootout.
Winning or losing carries a benefit or punishment of winning or losing the wagered coins and trophy points. As you get more trophy points, you can access games worth more coins – but losing games means you lose trophy points too.
There’s no tournament mode as yet, but it’s on it’s way, and there is a weekly leaderboard with various different leagues so you can see how well you’re progressing.
Table Tennis Touch is by no means the only ping pong game available on Android, but it is one of the best, despite needing to pay $2.99 upfront to download it. Once you have, you’ll realize that while the controls are simple, the level of precision required (and possible to get out of your shots) is immense. Topspin, backspin, sidespin and powerful smash shots are just a stroke away.
Gaming options are pretty simple – you can either play online against another real person, jump into a quick match versus AI or take part in a championship against AI opponents. The main section is a series of increasingly difficult matchings in the career mode, though there are a few mini-games thrown in to break things up.
Sometimes you end up in a situation where you’ve got no data or Wi-Fi connection available, and in those situations, you’re going to need a fun game that plays well offline. The suggestions below lean towards the casual gamer, but a number of others in this list (Eternium: Mage And Minions particularly) also work well without a connection.
Doodle Bowling is not an in-depth strategy game, and nor does it require sporting prowess, or any real interest in a sport at all. In exchange for this lack of required interest, Doodle Bowling can keep you entertained a few minutes at a time by letting you play through frame after frame of a scrawled game of bowling.
Rather than offer realistic HD graphic, Doodle Bowling reduces everything to simple line drawings. Swiping upwards from the bottom of the screen bowls the ball, and swiping left or right while it’s in motion controls the spin. It’s probably not a game that’s going to keep you entertained on a long-haul flight, unless you really, really like bowling, but it’ll certainly keep you distracted for a 15-minute commute to the office.
There are different lanes and graphics to choose between and unlock, but the basic game remains the same, obviously.
Even though Shadow Fight 2 has been out for three years already, and there’s a new one due to drop in 2017, Shadow Fight 2 is still worth downloading in the meantime to fill that void. More than 100 million downloads suggest it’s probably worth your time.
With no requirement to eat up your data plan or fight online against other real people, there’s a whole long series of battles for you to fight your way through, learning new moves and gaining new weapon skills along the way. Where Shadow Fight differs from most other fighting games is that it’s not just a button masher.
There’s an emphasis on form, which means that it’s not all about striking as quickly as you can, and there’s real benefit -and satisfaction – to timing your attacks and blocks correctly. If you want a super-fast fighting game, this isn’t it.
While Shadow Fight 2’s name is pretty self-explanatory, the upcoming Shadow Fight 3 will drop the sketched shadowy look altogether.
Need a brain scratcher to keep you entertained? These suggestions should have you covered, whether you like physics-based puzzlers or more exploratory games.
Sometimes the sheer simplicity of a game is what gets under your skin, and that’s the case with Rolling Snail, which describes itself as a physics-based drawing game. The aim is simple: get your snail to the weird portal-looking thing to advance to the next level.
You do this by drawing a line for the snail to roll along, occassionally helping it along its way by dropping a rock on it or removing/snipping lines that you’ve already drawn.
Each level has three stars for you to collect on your way to the exit – the more stars you get, the more points you’ll get for each level too. You might think it sounds a little too simple, but if you like an occassional puzzler, Rolling Snail is worth a look.
Diggy’s Adventure makes it onto this list of games to check out thanks to its sheer variety of different puzzles and tasks you need to complete to progress through the game. It’s also got a pretty sharp script and some interesting characters to discover along the way.
The game is made up of more than a 1,000 different puzzles and riddles, and largely involves finding your way through a maze or digging your way out of a mine to escape. In order to achieve that, you’ll need to go around interacting with the game’s characters and following the instructions and clues they give you to point you on your way.
With its relatively slow pace, solid script and huge variety of different puzzles and locations, Diggy’s Adventure is one that will keep you coming back.
Tower defense is a huge genre with many Clash of Clans-style imitators. Often, however, these are blatant money-grabs or vehicles for ads. The ones below offer a better experience than that.
Realm Defense makes its way into this list for being beginner-friendly but still offering enough variety for veteran tower defense fans. It’s also one of the better balanced games in the genre, not requiring you to spend money to progress as long as you’re willing to put in the time.
The main game is made up of waves of enemies set across more than 40 levels, and each of your weapons can be levelled up in various ways to add new abilities. There are also other bonus items to use, like spells to burn or freeze enemies, and end of level bosses as you progress.
There’s also a league that gives one free entry per day. If you want to play a ‘league’ game more than that, it’ll cost you diamonds.
If you’d like your tower defense games a little brighter but equally unforgiving in their difficulty, Fieldrunners 2 is well worth downloading, particularly if you missed out the original game that came a few years before. Even if you did play that one, you’ll probably still enjoy the sequel.
With a fun, cartoony graphic style and unrelenting waves of enemies with different abilities to defeat, you’ll need to carefully plan how you will deal with each wave, if you want to make it through to the next level.
As you play, you unlock different quantity-limited items that you can use in each round – playing on a harder difficulty level gives you more stars, which allows you to unlock items quicker but presents a significantly harder challenge with each leap in difficulty. Whether you spend just five minutes in the game or two hours unable to drag yourself away, it’s a whole lot of fun.
It’s not free to download, but for just $2, it’s not hard to get your money’s worth. Unfortunately, it’s not been updated in quite some time, but it still worked just fine for us.
Just like with tower defense and sports games, there’s a good chance you have your favorite RPG that you’ve already invested a lot of time (and possibly money) in already. If you’re looking for a new one to check out, Eternium is a fun option that doesn’t lean too heavily on grinding, and if you do choose to pay for in-game content, it’s not stupidly priced. If you’re a Final Fantasy fan, you might want to check out Brave Exvius.
Eternium: Mage And Minions
Eternium: Mage And Minions is an excellent RPG in its own right, but it’s helped even more by the fact that you can play it for as long as you like with no restrictions – there’s no power guage or stamina system that limits how much you can play each day without spending on coins or diamonds, as with many other games. It also works entirely offline once it’s fully downloaded and updated.
The gameplay is classic RPG fare with a huge variety of weapons, different characters to use (you can also create your own) and a crafting system for both abilities and weapon upgrades, which will keep you playing in pursuit of that next unlock.
Moving and attacking are simple, and you can execute special commands by drawing a sign on the screen. These commands are handily shown next to the moves as you play, in case you forget which is which. With lots to explore and craft, it’ll keep you busy for a long time.
Chrono Trigger is by no means a new RPG, in fact, it’s a port of one that’s been around in one form or another since 1995 on the Super Nintendo. While the world has moved on, this game has not, meaning it provides some good old fashioned RPG fare that doesn’t require you to continue spending money on in-app purchases. You do, however, need to spend $9.99 as a one-off purchase up front to buy it.
While that feels like a lot for an app nowadays, it’s well worth it for anyone who enjoys RPGs. It also includes the two additional areas that were released as part of an update for the Nintendo DS.
Somewhere near the start of the story, a friend you’ve met along the way is accidentally transported to a different time (yes, you get to use a time machine) and you heroically throw yourself into the portal to rescue her. What ensues after that is a mix of exploration, real-time battling, collecting different items and potions, and all manner of other things in a long game that should last you many, many hours per play through.
Endless runners are always one of the most popular Android games categories, and our suggestions below should keep you entertained for a long, long time.
Sky Dancer is a stylish endless runner in a similar vein to Temple Run, but one that keeps things nice and simple in terms of options and power-ups.
What makes Sky Dancer both irritating and fun is the precision required to plant your landing perfectly as you sprint through the 3D landscape. Tap both sides of the screen to jump, or hold either side to move in that direction, and that’s all your controls.
When you do inevitably meet your demise, you get once chance to continue (either by using coins or watching an ad). The next time you slip up, the game is over.
There’s no need to buy any in-game content (though there are different characters available), it’s free to download and pleasingly simple.
If you want an endless runner that involves no actual running, Epic Skater is a fun way to pass a few minutes as you hone your skating skills.
Like similar games, the main aim is to get as far as you can, racking up as many points as you can along the way. To do that, you need to ollie, kickflip, grind and manual your way through different side-scrolling levels.
There’s a coin upgrade system that allows you to change things like your appearance and the board you’re using, which also affects how well you’re likely to do. Some items give bonus coins or boosts once you’ve equipped them. You can choose to go for top score, longest distance or highest combo on each run.
However, what makes Epic Skater fun is the fluidity of controls and precision that makes pulling off an endless stream of tricks a really rewarding feeling.
If you’d rather be handling weapons and slaying rivals than kickflipping your way to a high-score, these action games should keep you entertained.
Dead Trigger 2
If you like shooting games, and are particularly keen on blasting zombies into many, many smaller parts, then Dead Trigger 2 is a good long-term choice as it’s being regularly updated with new content and challenges. It’s also been around long enough, and is popular enough to have a huge number of people to go up against in various different versus modes too.
There’s a main story mode, side missions to earn extra component parts and cash to upgrade your weapons and enough other challenges and options to keep you busy for a really long time.
You can select between different control methods, and there’s support for gamepads and button mapping too, which is handy for a game like this. There’s also no real need to hand over any cash for in-game purchases either.
If you’re looking to immerse yourself in an epic-feeling hack and slash game, then check out Godfire: Rise of Prometheus, which despite being available for quite a while, still offers a whole lot of gameplay for free.
Like the others we’ve tried to include in this list, there’s no need to hand over any real cash to play this game, and provided you don’t intend on making any purchases, the story element of the game works well offline. It still looks pretty good for its age, though not the graphical achievement it once was, and the ‘final hit’ moves will be familiar to anyone that’s seen a Mortal Kombat ‘fatality’ sequence.
It’s more action-adventure than puzzler, but each level does throw in a puzzle challenge, as well as plenty of enemies to hack up and an end-of-level boss to defeat. Naturally, there are a whole load of different weapons you can acquire and upgrade along the way too.
The racers included below have been selected for quality and fun, rather than realism and depth of play. There’s plenty to explore in both, but anyone looking for a more traditional big name racer will want to check out long-standing favorites like Asphalt: Airborne 8, CSR 2 and Real Racing 3.
Micro Machines needs little introduction on any platform, and the Android game is no different. Grab yourself a car, select a race mode and you’ll be thrown into a race against other real opponents playing around the world.
As is common in many free-to-play games nowadays, you’ll need to play a fair amount to unlock new courses and vehicles as you progress, but there’s enough variety to keep you entertained. And if you’re happy to hand over some money to skip the grind, you can do that instead.
In race modes, the objective is pretty simple – get across the line first by any means necessary, which means using the weapons and other pickups you’ll collect as you race. In elimination mode, points are awarded to racers that manage to keep up the pace and stay on screen, and in Battle mode there’s no course to race around and the only aim is destruction of your enemies.
For anyone that prefers their races short and on two wheels, Dirt Xtreme is a new game that pitches a great balance of exciting races with challenging courses. It’s essentially a racing game that’s somewhere between a straight-out motocross game and a trial bike game that rewards balance and control.
Races are mostly a minute or less, making it ideal for quick blasts when you just have a few minutes and there’s a selection of different bikes and tracks to unlock.
In career mode, you work your way through different locations, each of which have multiple stages, racing against other players. When there aren’t suitably skill-matched real opponents for you to race against, AI fills the gap.
The upgrade system requires you to collect multiple items for each bike part, and you can upgrade each bike multiple times to significantly increase its overall stats. Even better, a recently introduced daily bonus makes getting the parts and bike blueprints required easier.
Once you’ve got the hang of things, switch to full manual controls for a more rewarding experience that requires better timing and skill.
Sometimes all you really want to do to release frustration with the real world is bash the hell out of someone in a video game. For those moments, we’d recommend these Android fighting games.
Real Boxing 2 Rocky
For anyone that wants a little more realism in their fighting game – whether you’re a boxing fan or not – Real Boxing 2 is well worth downloading.
How you tap or swipe the screen dictates what sort of swing you’ll take at your opponent, which works pretty neatly. Swiping upwards on the right side of the screen, for example, will deliver a right-handed uppercut, while swiping sideways on the right side will deliver a body blow.
Working your way through the bouts will eventually lead you towards a face-off with Rocky Balboa, but the main appeal of the game is levelling up your fighter’s skills and then taking those online and using them against other real-life opponents.
Mortal Kombat is another fighting series that’s stood the test of time, and this iteration brings it in-line with the mechanics for other mobile fighting games, by simplifying the controls and adding in a granular upgrade system.
Naturally, you’ll find all the characters you know and love from previous Mortal Kombat games across different platforms from the past, and it keeps all the gore and ‘fatality’ moves that you’d expect from a Mortal Kombat game too.
Attacking is reduced to tapping the screen, which activates combos of moves, plus you also have special moves which are activated after a successful combo. Rather than offering up the standard one-on-one format, each battle is a team of three fighters pitted against another trio of computer or human-controlled players.
With plenty of different game modes and the need to level up your teams and characters, there’s plenty to get stuck in with in Mortal Kombat X. If you’d rather play with the same sort of game mechanics (tapping and swiping to pull off moves) but would prefer the DC Comics universe of characters, then check out Injustice: God Among Us instead.
Want to plot the rise of an empire? Conquer new lands while developing technologies that catapult you through the ages? These Android strategy game suggestions have got you covered.
The Battle of Polytopia
The Battle of Polytopia is a wonderful mix of of strategy and adventure that sees you exploring (and conquering new lands) and battling any AI tribes you come across on the way. It’s also one of the better looking options with cute, blocky graphics.
The tribe you choose for each game will dictate the type of adventurer you start with, but you can research new abilities along the way, so it really just dictates what you’ll be doing at the start. Levelling up is easy enough to achieve to not be frustrating but the gameplay is tricky (and varied) enough to keep you coming back for more. This is also helped by the automatically generated maps and different tribes you can join.
It’s very simple in comparison to many strategy games, meaning there aren’t too many in-game options and items, not that it doesn’t present a challenge. It’s a pleasingly small download and there’s really no need to pay for any in-game purchases in order to progress or fight off the newest challenge.
Keep Kraft is one of the newest apps in this list, and another that’s officially ‘unreleased’ right now. Nonetheless, don’t let that put you off, as Keep Kraft offers a really fun mix of strategy and civilisation-style gaming. Your aim is simple: grow your village into a thriving city starting in the stone age and ending up in modern times.
To make it all the way through, you’ll need to manage your raw materials smartly, ensuring you’ve always got enough provisions to keep your people alive and happy. The crafting system is well balancedm, pitching a good spot between keeping you playing and it feeling like a grind.
As you progress, you’ll need to research new technologies, assign people jobs and go on exploratory missions (often involving an attack on a foe) to continue your development. As a new game, it’s hard to say if this one is going to stand the test of time – or be ruined by later developer tweaks – but right now it’s a whole lot of fun for a fan of the genre.
It can also be played in two-player pass-and-play mode, which is a nice bonus.
Free (in-app purchases available)
Around 75 MB
Android 4.0.3 and above
What is your favorite Android game? Let us know in the comments.