With such a bountiful choice of great games for Android phones in the Google Play Store, how do you decide which Android apps to download? We’ve all experienced the pangs of download regret, but don’t worry — we’re here to make it a thing of the past with our handpicked list of the best Android games currently available. Most of them are free, and some cost a few bucks, but all of them will keep you entertained at home or when you’re out and about. You’ll need internet connectivity for many of these games, but we’ve also gathered together some of the best Android games to play offline.
There are many different kinds of games in the Play Store, so we’ve aimed to pick a good mix of categories, including first-person shooters, role-playing games (RPG), platformers, racing games, puzzlers, strategy games, and more. There should be at least one game on this list to suit everyone. And if you’re looking for the best iPhone games, we’ve found those, too.
Gwent: The Witcher Card Game
Can’t wait for the arrival of season two of The Witcher on Netflix later this year? Let this fill your time until then. Fans of Gwent have probably already played the PC version, but now you can play on-the-go with the mobile version, with its stunning visual effects and gorgeous, hand-drawn art that brings every PvP duel to life. You can choose from a variety of modes, from classic to seasonal and the new, extra-challenging Arena mode that Geralt of Rivia himself would be proud of. Gwent is free to play, but beware — it will take up a lot of your time as you build a deck you can be proud of, gaining special abilities and spells as you collect cards. Easy to get into, hard to master, Gwent: The Witcher Card Game is a satisfying game that’s ideal to play on your commute or whenever you’re looking to kill some time.
The Room: Old Sins ($5)
Whether you’re a huge fan of The Room series — and have played the other three games — or are totally new to the franchise, The Room: Old Sins is the best game yet. It’s a puzzle game that’s packed with creepy, atmospheric moments and a captivating story. Essentially, it’s about escaping the dollhouse you find yourself trapped in — and yes, that’s as spooky as it sounds. When an ambitious engineer and his socialite wife go missing, the hunt is on for a mysterious artifact. You follow the trail to the attic of their home, Waldegrave Manor, and discover a strange dollhouse. Scares aside, the unsettling locations and contraptions of The Room: Old Sins are beautifully rendered, and the game is gorgeous to look at. With no ads or microtransactions to distract you, it’s an immersive experience, even if you haven’t played the other games in the series — and you’ll definitely want to after this.
This 3v3 multiplayer and battle royale game is the most fun you can have with your friends online — although there are also a variety of modes to play through solo. Unlock dozens of Brawlers, each with their own gadgets, Star Powers, and abilities — and customize them with unlockable skins as you battle across a variety of locations. Play Brawl Ball (3v3) and show off your soccer skills or be the last Brawler standing in Showdown, a battle royale style fight to the death. With local and regional leaderboards to climb, this is a game you will pick up quickly and won’t put down easily. It’s free to play, with in-game purchases to upgrade your Brawler, if you choose.
This action RPG game has impressive graphics that have drawn comparisons to Zelda: Breath of the Wild. It’s set in a massive open world called Teyvat, where you’ve arrived with your sibling, stripped of all your powers. You set out across the world to find The Seven (not the ones from The Boys), elemental gods who will hopefully give you the answers you seek. Genshin Impact has received critical acclaim for its vast open world, gorgeous visuals, and soothing soundtrack by the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and cross-platform play with friends is supported too, so you’re never alone — unless you want to be. The game operates on a gacha system with a free-to-play base game and optional in-game currency that you can spend on the opportunity to win prizes, like weapons, loot, and additional characters for your party.
Bad North: Jotunn Edition ($5)
Whether you’re a fan of real-time strategy (RTS) games or not into strategy at all, the cutesy graphics and sound effects of Bad North: Jotunn Edition will draw you in. The premise is simple: Defend your little square island from hordes of Viking invaders. Early missions give you a false sense of security, though, as you breeze through slow waves of opponents and clearly laid out islands, unprepared for what’s to come — missions where one bad decision could crush your progress, sending you back to where you started. Don’t be fooled by the cute aspect — this may feel like a less-demanding strategy game, but make a wrong move and there are no do-overs. But that’s part of the fun of this game and what keeps players coming back for more.
The follow-up to Alto’s Adventure — although you don’t need to have played it to enjoy Alto’s Odyssey — is a beautiful game indeed. You play as Alto, sandboarding his way across vast deserts and windswept dunes on a quest to master the elements and discover the secrets of the sky. There are six unique characters to unlock, each with their own skills and attributes to help you master the game, and 180 goals to complete. The soundtrack and visuals already add up to a pretty relaxing experience, but if you fancy something even more meditative, opt for Zen mode, which eliminates power-ups, coins, and scores and lets you simply explore the endless desert while enjoying the serene soundtrack. Whichever way you play it, Alto’s Odyssey is a memorable experience — although the ads can be a little intrusive.
This mobile port of the popular console and PC game is an excellent choice if you’re missing hanging out with your friends right now. It’s a platform fighting game where you can battle up to eight other players in ranked matches and casual free-for-alls, and it supports full cross-play. But the best bit is creating a custom room with your friends where you can battle it out — just make sure you hone your skills in the Training Room first. With 50 unique characters to choose from — and a rotation of new characters every week — there’s a wide range of game modes, too, like Capture the Flag and Brawlball. You’ll be matched quickly with others thanks to the huge number of players, and Brawlhalla is 100% free to play.
If you’ve ever played Town of Salem or Werewolf, you’re going to love Among Us. The game’s popularity has really taken off — as the memes you’ll find online demonstrate. Set on a spaceship, this multiplayer strategy game can be played with four to 10 players over local Wi-Fi or online. It’s fun with friends, as long as you don’t take it too seriously, but the real madness comes when playing with a bunch of strangers online. The basic premise is simple: You’re a crewmate, and your job is to complete various tasks around the ship — but wait! There’s an imposter amongst you with a dastardly plan: to slaughter everyone horribly! Your goal is to figure out which one of you is the guilty party. Along the way, the imposter tries to throw others off their scent by sabotaging things, creating alibis, and covering up the murders. If you play as a member of the crew, you just need to ensure you complete your tasks while trying to figure out who the imposter is. Playing as the imposter means your goal is to kill everyone before they figure out who the guilty party is. It’s free to play, and surprisingly addictive once you get to grips with it.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night ($3)
It feels like Castlevania has been around forever, from the ’80s games on NES, SNES, Game Boy, and Sega Genesis to the 1997 releases of Symphony of the Night and Legends games on PlayStation. Whether you’re already a fan of the series or just looking for a decent platformer to play on mobile, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is well worth the price of entry. The original PlayStation version is undoubtedly the best Castlevania game around — and the Android version lives up to the hype. Charm and nostalgia aside, you can play using your touch screen, but we’d highly recommend using an Android controller. You follow Alucard, Dracula’s son, as he explores a mysterious castle looking for Richter, discovering new abilities and becoming more powerful along the way. The achievement system with battle milestones and seriously difficult boss fights ensure this game has longevity, and you can choose to play as Richter or Maria too.
If you’re a fan of Diablo 2 and 3 prepare to come over all nostalgic when you play this action RPG. It’s surprisingly expansive, with over 40 levels in the single-player offline campaign and a further 10 secret levels to unlock — and add in a dark fantasy setting and gorgeous soundtrack and you have the recipe for a memorable game. You can choose from three specializations: Skirmish (melee), archery, or sorcery, build your character with more than 45 unique skills, or take advantage of the multi-class system to create your own unique skill tree. The fast-paced combat and character customization ensure this game will hold your attention. It’s free to play — there are microtransactions, but they’re in no way essential to level your character and progress through the game.
Asphalt 9: Legends
Arcade racing games have come a long way since the days of Daytona USA — and Asphalt 9: Legends brings hyper-realistic arcade racing to Android. Race more than 50 of the world’s best cars, from Lamborghinis to Ferraris, and customize your vehicle using the editor — you can change the color, material, rims, and more. With over 800 events and 60 seasons, Career mode is the most fun you can have in a mobile racing game. We love the online multiplayer mode, which lets you race up to seven rival speedfreaks to unlock Milestone rewards and make your way to the top of the leaderboard. It’s totally free to play — plus it’s one of the best-looking racing games on Android.
Battle Chasers: Nightwar ($10)
Fans of the original comic book series of the same name will be as excited by this Japanese RPG (JRPG) as we are. You play the role of Gully, a young girl who sets out to find her long-lost father, Aramus, who has vanished and left behind his magical gauntlets. Along with a motley crew of sidekicks, including an ancient war golem, you must learn to wield the gauntlets as you set out to cross the mysterious Grey Line in search of your father. Combat is turn-based, and there’s a plethora of enemies to fight, as well as involved crafting and a colorful, sprawling world to explore. Battle Chasers: Nightwar will set you back $10, but with no in-app purchases or paid downloadable content (DLC), this is a game that’s going to keep you busy for a while.
Pokémon Café Mix
Is there anything cuter than a Pokémon? How about a cafe designed exclusively for Pokémon! Pokémon Café Mix is a fun little puzzle game that tasks you with preparing dishes and drinks for a variety of Pokémon customers. Do a great job creating treats and you’ll make a bunch of new friends — and even expand your business so more Pokémon can visit and you can create new delicious dishes. This cute little game is free to start but has in-app purchases available.
Idle games are a great way to keep your fingers busy while you watch TV, and who doesn’t love penguins? Penguin Isle is a chilled out little idle game where the aim is to create a habitat for a variety of different penguins. The soothing music, relaxing scenery, and cute animations make for a great combo for those looking to unwind — and while Penguin Isle isn’t for those seeking action and excitement, it’s the ideal game for relaxing after a long day at work.
One-Punch Man: Road to Hero 2.0
Based on the hit anime series, One-Punch Man: Road to Hero 2.0 puts you in charge of mobilizing the Hero Association’s reaction to various monster attacks. Collect hero cards and use special moves to make sure peace is maintained while you work your way through the anime’s storyline. There’s a player-versus-player mode if you tire of single-player content, and if you’re really looking for a new challenge, you can take on the Extreme Trial too.
Tiny Room Stories: Town Mystery
Nothing is as all-consuming as a good mystery — and Tiny Room Stories: Town Mystery is one of the best detective story games you’ll play on your phone. You’re a PI returning to your father’s town following the receipt of a letter from him, only to find the place totally deserted. To find out what happened, you’ll need to solve puzzles, open locks, find clues, and explore a variety of interactive, fully 3D levels. It’s a blend of escape room and mystery with some really cool locations, from downtown apartment blocks to ancient catacombs — and expect a few surprising plot twists as you explore.
Riffing off the multiplayer castle-builders of past decades, Hades’ Star puts you in charge of a star-spanning empire. Your fledgling empire’s resources and armies are yours to command as you expand your rule across new star systems, build and customize new chips, and optimize trade routes. You’ll meet with other empires, headed by players just like you, and work together in the spirit of jolly cooperation while grinding the mysterious alien races beneath your space-boots. There are missions to complete with other players too, with little pressure to buy microtransactions.
Forget World of Warcraft and Eve Online — why not try a simpler approach to massively multiplayer games (MMOs) this year? For those who love adventuring through a world with other people but don’t have time for everything that comes along with that, there’s SimpleMMO, a fully text-based game that’s easy to play and comprehend. Right now there are over 400,000 players, so you can easily join forces with others to find loot, level up your character, and defeat world bosses. Despite its simple premise — and name — this game has some real depth, with plenty of character customization options as well as a range of different jobs for your character to do, from blacksmith to master thief. If you’re not the kind of person to take life — or gaming — too seriously, you’ll love SimpleMMO.
Game Dev Tycoon ($5)
The concept of Game Dev Tycoon may sound very meta — a game where you create games — but don’t be deterred. You play as an ’80s game developer — because we all know the ’80s is the coolest decade –coding in your garage. The aim? Make a hit game so you can move into a cool office and hire a team of developers and artists to help you out. Make bigger, better, more bad-ass games as the industry matures and, of course, make your fortune. The idea is simple but engaging, and you’ll find yourself impatiently anticipating reports of how well your last game did, and how your next hit can reach an even wider audience. It’s not free, but for a mere $5 you’ll have a game you can sink a lot of time into, so it’s well worth the price of admission.
It may seem as if Monster Legends borrows a lot from the Pokémon franchise, but it’s actually got more in common with the noughties juggernaut Neopets than anything else. Build your menagerie, add a range of different creatures, and train them up to become the best they can be. Each creature requires a different habitat and will evolve and change as it grows. Then, take them into Team Wars and Team Battlegrounds to prove your superior Monster Master skills. There are over 700 monsters to collect, but be aware that the lure of microtransactions to speed up your collection is strong.
Bloons TD 6 ($5)
If you’re a fan of tower defense games, where bad guys invade your map around a predetermined route and you have to erect destructive towers to wipe them out before they kill you, then you owe it to yourself to buy Bloons TD 6. With a cute and chaotic cartoon art style and hordes of bizarre enemies, things can get seriously crazy. The depth of your choice in how to defend is unsurpassed with dozens of towers, each with their own upgrade trees to climb. To mix things up, there are other defensive units you can deploy that will patrol, and there are loads of challenges that give you specific objectives and earn you money when you complete them. There are also some in-app purchases, but there’s so much depth here that they’re easy to ignore.
Exploding Kittens ($2)
If avoiding an exploding kitten sounds like your idea of fun — hey, we’re not judging — this is the game for you. The Android version of the original card game works pretty well, complete with quirky cat-based artwork by The Oatmeal artist Matthew Inman. A strange combo of Russian Roulette and Uno, the game mixes luck with strategy and some very dark humor. Exploding Kittens takes a while to master, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be addicted. You can play in single-player mode but the most fun is to be had in multiplayer with your friends. Despite the name, no cats were harmed in the making.
Call of Duty: Mobile
One of the biggest FPS franchises around comes to mobile with a game deliberately designed for touchscreen firefights — Call of Duty: Mobile. If you love your shooter action, then this is a must on your Android phone. It’s free, features a bunch of multiplayer modes, including Battle Royale, and you’ll find some familiar classic maps and characters from other Call of Duty games. You can customize loadouts, get ranked, win prizes, and more. But more important than all of that is the fast, frenetic, satisfying gameplay and the great graphics which combine to make this the best mobile shooter around right now. Just be sure to check out our Call of Duty: Mobile tips before you dive into the fray.
It can be hard to find games that aren’t just your usual casual games on the Play Store, so the inclusion of Tropico was very welcome. Based off the series of very successful PC games, Tropico puts you in the shoes of “El Presidente”, the president of a Caribbean island. It’s up to you to bring your island into the modern world, adding industries and new services — while also lining your pockets along the way. The range of scope here is excellent, and you have the choice of playing a beneficent leader, a tinpot dictator with an iron fist, or anything in between. $12 is a lot for a mobile game, but that gets you full access to the game, ad-free, and the ability to play it offline.
Mini Metro ($1)
If you’ve ever fancied designing your own public transit system, prepare for a challenge. Turns out, it’s not as easy as it looks. The early levels of Mini Metro may be simple, as you connect various stations in a neat straight line, but the tension soon amps up as the game throws rivers, cities that spring up out of nowhere, and a whole host of other obstacles in your way. Unlock new tunnels, carriages, and trains along the way and challenge your brain for less than the cost of a subway ticket with Mini Metro.
Stardew Valley ($4)
A farming RPG may not sound like a good time, but this charming title will whisk you away to a surprisingly immersive rural world full of interesting characters and strange new challenges. Can you tame your overgrown fields, raise animals and crops, and juggle a romance and family? Beyond the quiet village life, there are caves to explore and treasure to loot, but watch out for monsters. Packed with different activities and mini-games, the scale of Stardew Valley is incredible, the pixel art is undeniably cute, and you can play gently at your own pace. If you need something to get lost in for a few hours, this game will serve you well.
Oceanhorn (Free to start/$5.50)
If you’re a Legend of Zelda fan, then Oceanhorn might be the game for you. The popular title features a solid narrative and terrific visuals, along with a captivating soundtrack. It’s an accessible action-adventure packed with enticing quests, piles of treasure, monsters, magic, and puzzles to solve. This RPG starts out gently as you set out to solve the mystery of what happened to your father and get dragged into a bigger adventure in the ancient kingdom of Arcadia. You can play the first chapter for free to see if it grabs you before deciding whether to unlock the full game for $5.50 via an in-app purchase.
Dragon Ball Legends
With the release of Dragon Ball Super and a number of popular movies, it’s safe to say Dragon Ball has had a resurgence in recent years. If you’ve been enjoying diving back into the adventures of Goku and friends, then Dragon Ball Legends is the perfect way to get a Super Saiyan-flavored gaming fix on your smartphone. Playing as one of many Dragon Ball characters, you work your way through a series of levels against a range of opponents. Swiping on the screen will attack, move, and dodge, while special attacks and abilities are pulled off by tapping the cards that appear on screen. It’s a lot of fun, and it doesn’t pressure you to spend money to progress.
Real Racing 3
It’s time to burn some rubber in a wide range of meticulously re-created cars on an impressive lineup of real tracks from around the globe. Real Racing 3 features cars from Ferrari, Lamborghini, Aston Martin, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, and others. You’ll also get to test your skills behind the wheel on tracks like Silverstone, Hockenheimring, and Le Mans. With countless events to enter, cross-platform multiplayer, and lots of customization options, this is one of the best racing games around. The realistic graphics are impressive, but there are also ads and nudges towards in-app purchases.
Skydive down to Erangel Island, scavenge what you can, and kill, kill, kill in PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Mobile. You’ll take on 99 other people with the same goal, but there can be only one victor. Controls are inevitably a little awkward until you get used to them, but this is a tense shooter that will suck you right in. There are loads of different weapons and pieces of gear littered around to scavenge, not to mention vehicles you can commandeer. There are also now four enormous maps to play on, each with their own weather and day and night cycles. If you don’t like playing solo there are duo and four-person squad options. This game also runs well on most Android phones and it’s good at scaling back the graphics for less capable devices.
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