Top 25 Best Mobile Games of 2014

17 December 2014
Posted by:
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft player

The Top 25 best Mobile games of 2014 have been revealed! Is your favorite game part of the list of the greatest the iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch) & Android platforms had to offer in 2014?

The year is almost over, so we’ve compiled this list of the top-quality AAA must-own titles of the year!

Top 25 Best Mobile Games of 2014

Is there a game that didn’t make the list, that you think deserves a spot? Leave a comment and let us know your own list!

Hearthstone Cat

She’s helping. Honest. By Brassxgoggles

Runners-Up:

* Framed
* Rules!
* Joe Dever’s Lone Wolf – Act 2: Forest Hunt
* Galaxy Trucker
* Wayward Souls
* Fotonica
* Sunburn!
* Valiant Hearts: The Great War
* Retry
* Eliss Infinity
* Monster Hunter Freedom Unite for iOS

#25 – Castle Doombad

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: Grumpyface Studios; Publisher: Adult Swim
Release Date: January 9, 2014

Synopsis: Dr. Lord Evilstein has kidnapped a princess, and now his evil lair is crawling with do-gooders. In this reverse spin on tower defense it’s your job to defend your home turf from heroes trying to save the day. View your domain from a side-view perspective, placing traps and unleash minions on your unwitting foes to protect the fortress. Touch and drag up and down on the tower to navigate floors. Across three chapters and 45 levels you’ll outwit intruders that attempt to invade your castle from all sides—ladders allowing them entrance on higher floors, underground drills to start on dungeon floors closer to your fair maiden. Keep the princess safely in your clutches and send those heroes cryin’ back to momma.

From Adult Swim Games and Grumpyface Studios who brought you Robot Unicorn Attack and Super Mole Escape!

Key Features:
* Touch and drag or tap to place traps and minions in your castle and navigate floors with ease.
* 60 maniacally challenging levels spread across three chapters + ‘Summer Slaycation’ content update!
* Upgradeable Traps & Minions to overpower your most stubborn of intruders.
* Ward Off Knights, Archers, Superheroes and more.
* Combine & stack Traps for maximum effect.
* Unlockable Extremely Difficult Endless Mode For Extreme Challenge.
* 26 Game Center achievements to gather.
* Compete with your friends on Game Center leaderboards.

Review Quotes:

“Castle Doombad is one of the best games I’ve played on the mobile platform — full stop. It’s charming, the visuals are likable and sleek, and it suits a touch-based interface perfectly. For a mere few bucks Doombad simulates the experience of many full-on retail priced trap games, and that’s a pretty rare accomplishment.”
– Destructoid (Score: 95%)

“Castle Doombad is good fun built on top of solid mechanics. If you’re a fan of trap or tower-defense games, pick this one up.”
– Slide To Play (Score: 100%)

“Castle Doombad is funny, addicting and original enough to keep tower defense fans entertained for hours. If you’re looking for a new addiction, then Castle Doombad is your game.”
– Gamer.nl (Score: 85%)

#24 – Tales from the Borderlands: Episode One – Zer0 Sum

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS, PC, Mac, PS3 & PS4 & PS Vita (PSN)
Developer: Telltale Games; Publisher: Telltale Games
Debut: November 25, 2014 (PC)
Mobile Release Date: December 11, 2014

Synopsis: Tales from the Borderlands is a five part episodic game series from the creators of The Wolf Among Us and The Walking Dead: A Telltale Games Series. Set on the unforgiving world of Pandora after the events seen in Borderlands 2, this is a story full of Borderlands’ trademark humor, following two adventurers on their quest for greatness.

You’ll play as Rhys, a Hyperion ‘suit’ with dreams of being the next Handsome Jack, and Fiona, a Pandoran con artist looking to score her biggest ever swindle. Thrown together as unwilling partners in an adventure to recover cash they both think is theirs, their journey will take you on a wild ride where gangsters, bandit lords, and Vault Hunters are just some of the obstacles you’ll encounter, in this new take on the award-winning universe created by Gearbox Software.

Key Features:
* Play as Rhys, on a mission to make Hyperion his.
* Play as Fiona, on a mission to make the money hers (all of it).
* Explore Pandora as never before: familiar and new locations brought to life as more than mere cannon fodder.
* Your choices matter, changing the story around you, and making the tale yours.

Review Quotes:

“Tales from the Borderlands is simply an exquisite experience to partake in that is a must have. It’s non-stop entertainment that comes in multiple forms, and the only real drawback is that we have to wait for episodes 2-5, and may have a different opinion when the full game is released.”
– Apple N Apps (Score: 90%)

“Tales from the Borderlands is everything fans could possibly want out from a Telltale game set in the Borderlands universe.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 100%)

“Telltale knocked it out of the park with this one.” – Modojo (Score: 90%)

#23 – Motorsport Manager

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS
Indie Creator: Christian West
Release Date: August 21, 2014

Synopsis: Motorsport Manager is the most realistic motor-racing management game available. Create your own racing team, hire drivers, sign engineers, develop your car and invest in technology.

Key Features:
* This is your racing team. Hire drivers, develop your car and invest in technology.
* Work with your drivers to achieve the perfect qualifying lap.
* Formulate the ideal pitstop strategy to win races.
* Watch the race in real-time or jump into the strategy screens to take control of the action.
* React to weather changes, crashes and safety car periods.
* Win championships across the world to reach the pinnacle of motorsport.

Review Quotes:

“A cunning and addictive sim, Motorsport Manager offers enough that genre fans will love it, and casual players won’t be put off.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“As someone with no particular affinity for motorsport or management, I can nevertheless offer a very strong recommendation for Motorsport Manager.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 90%)

“Unlike some other managing games, Motorsport Manager is deep but easily accessible; with a great UI and cool looking graphics, is perfect for a mobile device.”
– Everyeye.it (Score: 90%)

#22 – Thomas Was Alone

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Linux, PS3 & PS4 & PS Vita (PSN), Xbox One (Xbox Live), Wii U (eShop)
Indie Creator: Mike Bithell
Debut: June 30, 2012 (PC & Mac)
Mobile Release Dates: May 15 2014 (iOS), July 24 2014 (Android)

Synopsis: Meet Thomas, a curious rectangle, and help him unravel the mysteries of his existence in a wonderfully strange world. Experience 100 levels of award-winning platform gameplay and take part in an emotional story narrated by Danny Wallace.

* Includes FREE ‘Benjamin’s Flight’ level pack, giving you more story and 20 additional levels to play through with young Benjamin, who goes in search of the Fountain of Wisdom aided by his father’s incredible invention.
* Experience the BAFTA winning, million selling game from creator Mike Bithell on Android tablets and phones.
* A minimalist game about friendship and jumping
* 100 levels, one immersive journey
* Award winning story narrated by Danny Wallace

Review Quotes:

“When I had finished with Thomas was Alone, I wanted more. I wanted the story to go on forever. I’m sure, even as a baby, I have never cared as much for a set of blocks as I did here. It’s a case study on how grand ideas and important themes can be carried by even the simplest of designs when its heart is in the right place.”
– Grab It Magazine (Score: 80%)

“Thomas Was Alone is freakin’ fantastic. It has an engaging story, vibrant and memorable graphics, and well thought out gameplay that will make it hard to stop playing. It’s a great purchase for gamers of all shapes and sizes.”
– Arcade Sushi (Score: 90%)

“Thomas Was Alone improves iPad gaming as a whole making it an absolute must buy, and now Thomas doesn’t need to be alone ever again.” – Apple N Apps (Score: 100%)

“It’s worth every penny you put in, and you’ll get a good three or four hours of enjoyment, along with a heartwarming tale of friendship.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 90%)

“An eminently entertaining slab of balanced indie-platforming fun, Thomas Was Alone feels like it should have been on mobile from day one.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 80%)

#21 – Battleheart Legacy

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: Mika Mobile
Release Date: May 28, 2014

Synopsis: The spirit of Battleheart returns, re-imagined! In Battleheart Legacy, you will explore a rich and detailed fantasy world, customize your unique hero with dozens of powerful skills and items, do battle with hordes of enemies, encounter quirky characters and discover the stories of a troubled realm. Will you become a powerful wizard, or a notorious rogue? A noble knight, or a savage barbarian? How will you forge your legacy?

Key Features:

* A refined real-time combat system, based on the award-winning “Battleheart”. Move your character or attack your foes through simple taps, and unleash powerful special moves at the right moment to turn the tide of battle!

* Unparalleled animation and VFX make every battle a visual feast!

* An astounding 150+ unique skills across 12 classes to customize your character with. Poison your foes, crush them with giant two-handed weapons, put them to sleep with a song, or simply blow them up with a meteor strike. And with our unique multi-classing system, it’s possible to combine classes into a nearly limitless number of combinations.

* Over 200 unique pieces of equipment to further tailor your character’s play style.

* Incredible boss battles that will put your hero to the test!

Review Quotes:

“Battleheart Legacy is easily among the best games I’ve played this year, and I can’t imagine a reality where it isn’t still high in the running when we get around to doing all of our game of the year stuff in December.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100%)

“Battleheart Legacy is an intricately designed RPG experience with tons of action, and potential choices making it a must buy.”
– Apple N Apps (Score: 90%)

“A worthy sequel to Battleheart that lets you fight with a single character. An insane amount of class customization combined with a charming style in both audio and graphics and a great story ensures at least 15 hours of great adventuring. After that there is arena and a new game plus. This might simply be one of the best action roleplaying games on iOS.”
– Gamereactor Denmark (Score: 90%)

#20 – Botanicula

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS, PC, Mac, Linux
Developer: Amanita Design
Debut: April 19, 2012
Mobile Release Dates: May 1, 2014

Synopsis: Botanicula is a humor-filled adventure game created by the makers of award-winning Machinarium, studio Amanita Design and Czech band DVA. Botanicula is point n click exploration game. It’s about a bunch of five friends – little tree creatures who set out for a journey to save the last seed from their home tree which is infested by evil parasites.

Five friends, little tree creatures, set out on a journey to save the last seed from their home tree which is infested by evil parasites.

Key Features:

* Relaxed game perfect for hard core gamers, their partners, families and seniors.
* More than 150 detailed locations to explore.
* Hundreds of funny animations.
* Incredible amount of hidden bonuses.
* Award winning music by Dva.

Review Quotes:

“This magical take on a minuscule ecosystem will draw out even the most hidden inner child. Amanita Design and band DVA have collaborated to create a masterpiece of sound and light that speaks to the player in a language of playful, yet deeply meaningful symbology.”
– Grab It Magazine (Score: 100%)

“Botanicula is a thoroughly engaging adventure that is a joy to partake in, making it a must buy.” – Apple N Apps (Score: 90%)

“A bold, bright, and brilliant point-and-click adventure, Botanicula is an experience to be savored.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“It’s a quirky and original adventure, with many neat touches and lovely graphics and sounds: it never reaches a true climax, but it will make you smile from beginning to end.”
– Multiplayer.it (Score: 84%)

“I’ll admit that it’s unique style of puzzle presentation means it’s not necessarily for all players, but it’s a sure-fire recommendation for everyone else.” – TouchArcade (Score: 90%)

#19 – FTL: Faster than Light

Average Review Score: 88%
Platforms: iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Linux
Developer: Subset Games
Debut: September 14, 2012
Mobile Release Date: April 3, 2014 (Advanced Edition)

Synopsis:
In FTL you experience the atmosphere of running a spaceship trying to save the galaxy. It’s a dangerous mission, with every encounter presenting a unique challenge with multiple solutions. What will you do if a heavy missile barrage shuts down your shields? Reroute all power to the engines in an attempt to escape, power up additional weapons to blow your enemy out of the sky, or take the fight to them with a boarding party? This “spaceship simulation roguelike-like” allows you to take your ship and crew on an adventure through a randomly generated galaxy filled with glory and bitter defeat.

Key Features:

* Give orders to your crew, manage ship power distribution and choose weapon targets in the heat of battle.
* Pause the game mid-combat to evaluate your strategy and give orders.
* Upgrade your ship and unlock new ones with the help of seven diverse alien races.
* Hundreds of text based encounters will force you to make tough decisions.
* Each play-through will feature different enemies, events, and results to your decisions. No two play-throughs will be quite the same.
* Permadeath means when you die, there’s no coming back. The constant threat of defeat adds importance and tension to every action.

Review Quotes:

“FTL’s seat-of-your-pants strategizing hits the sweet spot between careful planning and unpredictable action. This survival sim can be a heartbreaker at times, but it’s one of the most thrilling downloads you’ll find on iPad.”
– MacLife (Score: 100%)

“Brutal. Uncompromising. Utterly addictive. FTL finally warps to iPad and it’s even better than we’d hoped.” – 148Apps (Score: 90%)

“FTL: Faster Than Light for iPad is optimized for touch screens and plays like a dream. The Advanced Edition is a good addition and this, more expansive version of the game even plays better than its PC, Mac and Linux counterparts.”
– Gamer.nl (Score: 85%)

“If you’ve got an iPad and have found yourself even remotely interested in games like Out There or Star Command, you need FTL. Additionally, if you’ve played the PC version it’s still beyond worth picking up the iPad version as it has translated to the touchscreen even better than my most optimistic expectations.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100%)

#18 – Crossy Road – Endless Arcade Hopper

Average Review Score: 89%
Platforms: iOS, Android
Developer: Hipster Whale
Release Dates: November 20, 2014 (iOS), December 18, 2014 (Kindle Fire), January 8, 2015 (Android)

Synopsis: Why did the Chicken cross the road? Why did the Pigeon leave THAT there? Why did Specimen 115 abduct that cow? Why did Unihorse eat all that candy? Crossy Road is the endless arcade hopper you’ll never want to put down.

Review Quotes:

“From little considerations like the squish that plays proxy for haptic feedback whenever your tap, to key decisions like the game’s nostalgia-inducing voxel aesthetic, Crossy Road oozes arcade charm.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 90%)

“Crossy Road might be based on an arcade classic, but it looks great and offers tons of replayability on top of simply being lots of fun.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“Crossy Road is how free gaming should be done. It’s fun fast-paced gameplay is a blast to pass the time while waiting in lines or just if you want to zone out for a while. However, if you’re someone that needs some depth to be entertained you won’t find it here.”
– Modojo (Score: 90%)

#17 – 80 Days (2014)

Average Review Score: 89%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: Inkle
Release Dates: July 31, 2014

Synopsis: Featuring stunning art by Jaume Illustration, a half-million word script by Meg Jayanth, original music by Laurence Chapman, and built using the same inklewriter engine that powers our critically-acclaimed Sorcery! series, 80 DAYS is an interactive adventure created by your choices, on the fly, and is different every time you play.

Playing as Phileas Fogg’s loyal valet, Passepartout, you must balance your master’s health, your finances, and the time, as you choose your own path from city to city all the way around the world. Bribe your way onto early departures, but don’t let yourself go bankrupt or you’ll be sleeping rough and begging for aid! Trade items for profit, and collect the equipment for the conditions you’ll face: but too much luggage will slow you down…

Key Features:

* 80 DAYS is a breakneck race, with an in-game clock that never stops running. Trains, steamers, hot-air balloons, boats, camels, horses and more leave and arrive minute by minute.

* Every city and journey is narrated via an interactive story where you control every action. Will your choices speed you up – or lead you into disaster? Will you earn Fogg’s trust and respect? Will you uncover the secrets and short-cuts that can shave days off your time? Murder, romance, rebellion and intrigue await!

* The app is network-connected, with a live feed that shows you the position of all the other players of the game, their routes, triumphs and disasters. You can race to be the fastest – or look ahead to learn the secrets of the world.

* Share your own journey with friends, and load other’s routes directly into your app so you can race head-to-head.

* 80 DAYS is a complete experience, with no in-app purchases, and was made by a core team of just four people. If you enjoy it, please leave a rating, and check out our Sorcery! series.

Review Quotes:

“80 Days is a great exhibition in game making that is an absolute must have title that provides a thoroughly engaging adventure numerous times over.”
– Apple N Apps (Score: 100%)

“A fantastic and fascinating re-envisioning of the classic novel by Jules Verne, 80 Days is a delightful piece of interactive fiction.” – 148Apps (Score: 90%)

“I had a spectacular, unforgettable adventure story to show for my three-hour adventure, and couldn’t wait to learn more about the world, its characters, and the human desire to discover.”
– IGN (Score: 90%)

“Even in the relative infancy of the digital gamebook/choose-your-own adventure genre, 80 Days stands out as a pleasant oddity. I never would have imagined that a classic novel such as Around The World in 80 Days would be turned into an interactive experience. But I’m glad inkle did and the studio deserves high praise for creating an accessible and, ultimately, fun way for people to experience Verne’s classic work.”
– Grab It Magazine (Score: 90%)

#16 – Monsters Ate My Birthday Cake

Average Review Score: 89%
Platforms: iOS, Android, PC
Developer: SleepNinja Games
Release Dates: July 1, 2014

Synopsis: Warning!!! This game is crammed full of monsters, cake, amazing powers, puzzly bits, epic adventure, witty repartee, secret paths, unlockable characters, silly hats and a wiener dog. Use caution if you are allergic to fun or overly sensitive to cake-related pathos. Save the day and fulfill your monstrous cakelust all at once in MONSTERS ATE MY BIRTHDAY CAKE!

Key Features:

* ADVENTURE… EXCLAMATION POINT! – As so many of these things do, it all begins on a magical island. In this case, Gogapoe Island, a place populated by both humans and monsters. What starts out as a mission to get back Niko’s birthday cake becomes a quest for the fate of Gogapoe itself. But, ya know, cake is still super important, too!

* MONSTER MASH-UP! – Oodles of friendly monsters will join Niko’s quest and use their kooky powers to demolish obstacles and humiliate enemies. Hordes of evil monsters will cause mayhem and generally be jerkfaces, but that’s nothing you can’t fix with headbutts, frost breath, stink clouds and rainbow barf.

* EXERCISE YOUR BRAIN MUSCLE! – Even with powerful amigos at your side, you’re gonna need your thinking cap to get past these cerebrum-tingling environmental puzzles. And did we mention the bonus challenges that give you these really swell stars? You like stars, don’t you?

* IT NEVER HURTS TO HELP! – If side quests are your jam, Gogapoe is packed with people—and monsters—in need of roadside assistance. Send a little love their way, and you might discover hidden paths, unlock extra levels or earn unique swag, including special costumes that give Niko nifty powers of his own!

* SWEET TOUCH CONTROLS! – With innovative touch controls so buttery smooth they could grease a cake pan, it’s never been easier to manage a crew of big, hairy behemoths. Just draw a path, and they’ll follow your instructions to a T, even if you swap to another monster to cue up a different action.

* ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK BY DISASTERPEACE! – The icing on this big ol’ cake is 60 sweet minutes of original music written by composer extraordinaire, Disasterpeace.

Review Quotes:

“Monsters Ate My Birthday Cake is a charming and beautiful puzzler that will keep you joyously entertained throughout.”
– AppSpy (Score: 80%)

“Don’t be confused by the Cartoon Network’s publishing of the game: while this is a game that can be played by kids, adults and any kind of ‘gamer’ will find that it puts up a good fight.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100%)

“I have nothing but unabashed love for Monsters Ate My Birthday Cake, and although it’s a $4.99 download, it’s well worth the investment.”
– Arcade Sushi (Score: 85%)

#15 – Monument Valley

Average Review Score: 89%
Platforms: iOS, Android
Developer: UsTwo
Release Dates: April 3, 2014 (iOS), May 14, 2014 (Android)

Synopsis: In Monument Valley you will manipulate impossible architecture and guide a silent princess through a stunningly beautiful world.

Monument Valley is a surreal exploration through fantastical architecture and impossible geometry. Guide the silent princess Ida through mysterious monuments, uncovering hidden paths, unfolding optical illusions and outsmarting the enigmatic Crow People.

Key Features:

* Beautiful – Inspired by minimalist 3D design, optical illusions and palaces and temples from around the world, every monument is a unique, hand-crafted world to explore.

* Easy to Use – Twist and drag to reshape the world and help Ida to explore. Designed to be easy for everyone to pick up, enjoy and complete.

* Sound – Audio reacts to your manipulation of the world to provide a surreal and beautiful soundscape. Best experienced with headphones.

* Cloud Save – Synchronize your game across all your devices.

Review Quotes:

“Monument Valley is not only an exquisite piece of craftsmanship, but a genuinely delightful adventure with more ‘wow’ moments than most million-dollar blockbusters.”
– AppSpy (Score: 100%)

“Monument Valley is a technical and aesthetic accomplishment that rewards players with beauty, originality, and grace at every turn of its ten stages.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 90%)

“This is one of those milestones in mobile entertainment, unique and beautifully crafted. It feels quite short, but it still is worth experiencing.”
– Vandal Online (Score: 95%)

#14 – The Journey Down: Chapter Two

Average Review Score: 89%
Platforms: iOS, Android, PC, Linux, Mac
Developer: Skygoblin
Debut: August 18, 2010
Mobile Release Dates: August 25, 2014 (iOS)

Synopsis: Under the bustling metropolis of St. Armando, Bwana follows in the footsteps of his lost father together with Kito and Lina. In their search for the quixotic Underland, they discover a dark conspiracy shrouding the fate of Captain Kaonandodo. In the second chapter, the plot thickens as our heroes dive down into the mist below the Edge and wind up in the foggy and treacherous town of Port Artue where they find themselves cornered by pirates and on the run from the law.

The Journey Down is a classic point-and-click saga with an Afro-Caribbean vibe. Get ready to embark on an epic journey of brain-teasing adventure!

Key Features:

* A twisting tale of intriguing adventure.
* Tons of handpainted environments.
* An all original jazzy noir soundtrack.
* A fully voiced cast.
* HD art and animations.

Review Quotes:
“The Journey Down: Chapter Two is hard to put down, and is absolutely worth your time, regardless of if you play point-and-click adventures, though definitely check out chapter one first if possible.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 90%)

“Funny, clever, and challenging to just the right degree, The Journey Down: Chapter 2 continues its tradition of adventure game excellence.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“It’s a little dark, in every sense of the word, but The Journey Down: Chapter Two is a solidly entertaining adventure game.”
– 148Apps (Score: 80%)

#13 – Mikey Boots

Average Review Score: 90%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: BeaverTap Games
Release Dates: September 4, 2014

Synopsis: Mikey Boots is a challenging platformer for iOS with simple touch controls!

Review Quotes:

“Mikey Boots offers an intense, yet fun challenge that will keep you actively engaged, and we enjoyed making it a must have title.”
– Apple N Apps (Score: 90%)

“Mikey Boots is a nice reminder of a time when mobile games weren’t aiming to compete toe-to-toe with consoles and PC. When you consider the series is only a few years old, that’s kind of mind-blowing.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 90%)

“Mikey Boots is a fine third installment in the excellent Mikey series of platformers.” – 148Apps (Score: 90%)

“A clever remix of what’s come before, Mikey Boots might not be a platformer in the purest sense of the word, but it’s definitely worth a look.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 80%)

#12 – Papers, Please

Average Review Score: 90%
Platforms: iOS, PC, Mac, Linux, OnLive, PS Vita (TBD)
Indie Creator: Lucas Pope
Debut: August 8, 2014 (PC, Mac)
Mobile Release Dates: December 12, 2014 (iOS)

Synopsis: The communist state of Arstotzka has just ended a 6-year war with neighboring Kolechia and reclaimed its rightful half of the border town, Grestin.

Your job as immigration inspector is to control the flow of people entering the Arstotzkan side of Grestin from Kolechia. Among the throngs of immigrants and visitors looking for work are hidden smugglers, spies, and terrorists.

Using only the documents provided by travelers and the Ministry of Admission’s primitive inspect, search, and fingerprint systems you must decide who can enter Arstotzka and who will be turned away or arrested.

Key Features:

Includes the complete original game with all 31 days and 20 endings. Also adds unlockable multitouch support for faster paperwork, an enhanced inspection mode, Game Center achievements, leaderboards, mid-day resume, and more.

Review Quotes:

“A thoughtful, fresh, and surprisingly fun game of observation and resource management, Papers, Please is one of the most distinctive games on any platform.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“Papers, Please may not be what you’d typically describe as a fun video game, but it’s an incredibly clever experiment in storytelling that succeeds in what it sets out to do in ways you won’t expect.”
– Touch Arcade (Score: 100%)

“Paper, Please creates an immersive experience in a fully fleshed out environment that is a must have app.” – Apple N Apps (Score: 90%)

“Papers, Please continues this years great line-up of PC ports to iOS. It has a great subtlety to it, and its message to players can be interpreted in so many different ways.”
– Modojo (Score: 90%)

#11 – Bean Dreams

Average Review Score: 90%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: Kumobius
Release Date: December 3, 2014 (iOS)

Synopsis: Bean Dreams is an action-packed platformer from the dream team that brought you Duet and Bean’s Quest. Its deceptively simple interface keeps you in complete control while all-new game features, gorgeous retina graphics, funky music and 48 stages will bounce you to new heights!

Key Features:

* Perfect Gameplay: We distilled the platformer genre to its most pure element — jumping — and built a modern user interface that taps into the heart of that. Just touch left or touch right… it couldn’t be simpler!

* A Massive Adventure: Over 40 hand-crafted stages await you across 8 unique dreamy worlds. Every world has a specific, gorgeous art-style and soundtrack from acclaimed composer Flashygoodness.

* Ready, Steady, Jump! – Forget ‘speed runs’… get ready for ‘jump pars’. You can complete stages in a minimum number of jumps to earn bronze, silver and gold medals. When you finish a stage your jumps will be tallied up so every jump will count — literally! Backflip off enemies and launch yourself from springs in the Fortune Forest! Dive and swim through the aqueducts of the Bath House! Find the magic chili and unleash your full power in the Beach Bazaar!

* THANXOLOTL – Either locked away, hard to reach or hidden in a secret passage… your pet axolotls are scattered across your dreams! There’s one in each stage to be found and some fruit to feed them too!

* Graceful Design – Using beautiful graphical effects we subtly enhance the visuals and push the pixel retina limits of the latest devices while intelligently easing everything back for earlier devices. The result is a consistent 60 frames per second that’s crucial for the best gaming experience.

Review Quotes:

“This is a fantastic game that other developers of platformers need to take heed of, and that you need to play.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100%)

“From the first breezy stage to the last blisteringly difficult one, Bean Dreams is replete with sprites and sounds that twinkle and bloop in just the right way.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 100%)

“A bright and surprisingly challenging touchscreen platformer, Bean Dreams is a sharp and entertaining sequel.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 80%)

#10 – Skylanders Trap Team

Average Review Score: 90%
Platforms: iOS, Android, Kindle Fire OS, 3DS, Wii U, Wii, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360
Developer: Toys for Bob; Publisher: Activision
Release Date: October 5, 2014 (All Platforms, USA)

Synopsis: Get the full Skylanders Trap Team console video game experience on your tablet! Now you can Bring the Skylanders to Life™, defeat villains and trap them wherever you go! Begin the adventure for FREE with TWO Digital Skylanders: Instant Snap Shot and Instant Food Fight & TWO Instant Traps. Then continue your adventure by buying the TABLET STARTER PACK.

Kaos has blown up the walls of the feared Cloudcracker Prison freeing the most notorious villains in Skylands. It’s up to you and the Skylanders to find and capture them. Using Traptanium, a magic material that can harness the power of the Elements, you have the amazing ability to trap the villains and return them to Skylands to fight for you!

Key Features:

* Over 175 Playable Characters – Play as your favorite Skylanders (from any previous game) and use the brand new Trap Masters to bring the fight to Kaos! (TABLET STARTER PACK REQUIRED)

* Over 40 Capturable Villains – Using the brand new Traps snatch defeated enemies and turn them into allies, using their incredible power to wreak havoc on the enemies of the Skylands. (TABLET STARTER PACK REQUIRED)

* Controller Support – Use Touch Screen Controls or the Skylanders Trap Team Wireless Bluetooth Game Controller or connect your Android-supported Game Controller for epic console play right on your tablet!

* Second Controller required for 2 Player Co-Op play.

Review Quotes:

“The combination of portal interaction, plethora of characters and development, along with an extensive amount of content with high production values puts it almost in a league of its own. The high cost barrier to entry will certainly be off-putting for some, but folks that invest will end up with an experience that matches and even exceeds that of its console siblings (due to the portable nature of the system).”
– TouchArcade (Score: 90%)

“The full Skylanders experience for your tablet device, and a superb game in its own right: Trap Team is one heck of an achievement.”
– PocketGamerUK (Score: 90%)

“You can’t go wrong with Trap Team on console, but the iPad and Android port is just as good, if not better because of the portability.”
– Modojo (Score: 90%)

“It’s just in a completely different class than anything else out there.” – Gamezebo (Score: 100%)

#09 – Bug Heroes 2

Average Review Score: 90%
Platforms: iOS, Android
Developer: Foursaken Media
Release Dates: February 19, 2014 (iOS), September 18, 2014 (Android)

Synopsis: Every day while you’re gone, an epic battle of swords, guns, and armor rages on your counters, on your floors, and in your yard… Enter the world of the Bug Heroes!

From the creators of Monster Adventures and Heroes & Castles comes a new adventure, blending fast paced action, strategy, and defensive gameplay!

Master 25 unique heroes – from a hook wielding Waterbug pirate, to an old and wise Aphid sensei, a champion Bumblebee boxer, a grenade launching Worm, a poison obsessed Stinkbug, and tons more! Choose and customize your squad of two, then seamlessly switch between them while unleashing a variety of powerful abilities on your enemies. Scavenge for food and junk, fortify your base, build turrets, level up your heroes, equip weapons and armor, and survive!

Key Features:

* MOBA-like competitive & cooperative multiplayer.
* Tons of single player content, including missions, an endless mode, and a base vs base skirmish mode.
* 25 unique heroes to master – form your team of two.
* Innovative squad based gameplay – control two heroes simultaneously.
* Level up your Bug Heroes, increase their skills, and buy weapons, armor, and gear.
* Scavenge for food, then defend your Food Stash with turrets and upgrades.
* Complete missions, earn stars, and unlock a host of powerful upgrades.
* Master both melee and ranged combat. Slice your enemies with swords, swat bugs off of ledges, blast them from long range with guns and magic, and more.
* Tactical gameplay – use cover to defeat your enemies.
* Over 75 varied enemy types to battle.
* Sync across devices with cloud save.

Review Quotes:

“Bug Heroes 2 succeeds at practically everything it sets out to do. Its graphics are great (check out the detail on the bumble bee soldier’s fuzzy coat), the fighters’ bug-like voices are adorable, if a little hard to understand, and there’s enough content to keep you busy for a while.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 90%)

“Bug Heroes 2 is an awesome sequel to a great game, upping the ante in almost every respect, and delivering an amazing value for its price.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100%)

“Bug Heroes 2 comes with lots of different characters to unlock, three rich single player modes, online multiplayer and some very nice graphics and controls.”
– Multiplayer.it (Score: 86%)

#08 – Final Fantasy VI

Average Review Score: 91%
Platforms: iOS, Android, Game Boy Advance, PS1, SNES
Developer: Square Enix; Publisher: Square Enix
Debut: October 1, 1994 (SNES, USA)
Mobile Release Date: February 6, 2014 (iOS), January 15, 2014 (Android)

Synopsis: Final Fantasy VI first debuted in 1994 as the sixth installment in the iconic Final Fantasy series. Innovations included the ability to play all the main characters as the game’s protagonist, and to this day, its epic story intertwining each of their fates is still highly rated and wildly popular. The characters’ dramatic performances are also highly rated, including the catastrophe occurring midway through, which delivers a particular emotional jolt to players.

With plenty of abilities available and the magicite system for controlling spells/summoning, players can develop their characters any way they want. This was also the first FINAL FANTASY game to include the Ultima Weapon, the most powerful sword of all and a recurring item in subsequent titles within the series.

Key Features:

* All graphics have been painstakingly recreated, bringing the world of Final Fantasy VI to your mobile device for the very first time! Kazuko Shibuya, one of the graphics designers involved in the Final Fantasy series from the very start, personally worked on the main characters and supervised the recreation of the game’s graphics.

* Square Enix’s vast experience in A-list smartphone RPG titles has been harnessed in implementing intuitive user-friendly controls that make the game easy to play on touch screens. The battle interface has received particular attention, with a complete overhaul for use on your smartphone.

* This mobile release includes the new magicites and events that were introduced in the 2006 remake.

* Some events have been optimized to be played with user-friendly touch controls.

Review Quotes:

“Though probably not the definitive Final Fantasy VI experience, this iOS version succeeds in preserving the essence of the original beneath its cosmetic alterations.”
– AppSpy (Score: 100%)

“No matter what form it’s in, Final Fantasy VI is one of the best games in the history of the medium, with its fast-paced battles, humongous world to explore, fascinating characters and bold, original story.”
– Arcade Sushi (Score: 95%)

“Final Fantasy VI has a few issues and questionable decisions, but that doesn’t stop it from being a worthy port of one of the best games ever made.”
– Slide To Play (Score: 100%)

#07 – The Banner Saga

Average Review Score: 92%
Platforms: Android, iOS, PC, Mac, PS4 & PS Vita (PSN),
Developer: Stoic
Debut: February 25, 2013 (Factions Multiplayer)
Mobile Release Date: January 14, 2014 (Single-Player)

Synopsis: Embark on your own epic journey in this critically acclaimed tactical RPG, where your strategic choices directly affect your personal story, as well as the outcome of conflicts encountered during your struggle for survival in this Viking inspired tale.

Key Features:

* A 2D Fantasy Realm Inspired by Norse Mythology
Immerse yourself in beautifully hand drawn combat sequences and animations, accompanied by an evocative score from Grammy-nominated composer Austin Wintory.

* Player Choice That Drives Your Own Narrative
Every decision you make in travel, conversation and combat has a meaningful effect on the outcome as your story unfolds.

* Over 25 Playable Characters Each With Unique Personalities
Embark on your journey with a variety of characters from 7 different classes, each with unique abilities and upgrade options to fit your play style.

* Strategic Combat With Consequences
Victory or defeat and even the permanent loss of a character depends on which characters you choose to take into battle and what decisions you make afterwards.

* Winner of the Geekie Award for best Indie Video Game (2014)

* Independent Games Festival Finalist for Excellence in Visual Art and Honorable mentions for Design and Audio.

Review Quotes:

“Banner Saga is one of the greatest adventure games, mobile or otherwise, that’s come around in quite a long time. Not only is it interesting and accessible, but it’s clean, ornate, and enjoyable through and through. If you only pick out one adventure game this year on iOS, make it this one.”
– Modojo (Score: 100%)

“This is that game that will change your mind on story driven games. As soon as you get caught up in the story, Banner Saga will give you a ride well worth the price of admission.”
– TouchArcade (Score: 100)

“The iOS version of The Banner Saga is as good as seen on PC. The same great visuals and soundtrack and gameplay, but at half the price: you just can’t miss it.”
– Multiplayer.it (Score: 88%)

“Rarely do you see an iOS port that goes to such great lengths to preserve what made the PC version so special.”
– 148Apps (Score: 90%)

#06 – Table Tennis Touch

Average Review Score: 92%
Platforms: iOS
Developer: Yakuto
Release Date: May 15, 2014

Synopsis: We love table tennis! We also love games with awesome arenas, epic career modes and insane mini-games – so we made Table Tennis Touch, the most advanced table tennis game on the App Store.

If you’re like us and want simple controls, eye melting speed, crazy spin and rich retina graphics then we’ve made Table Tennis Touch for you too. We know you’ll love it – because we do.

Key Features:

* GREAT VALUE – We’re tired of spending money on games so easy you finish them in an hour. Our epic Career mode is certainly designed to last. It starts out gently but builds to near impossible speed – will you ever beat the Chinese king of spin Kao Jianjun? Prove yourself!

* MORE FUN – Tournaments are great and we have lots of them, but we’ve also made some insane mini-games. Go against the clock knocking down skittles, serving around moving obstacles, returning spin onto tiny-table and much more. Our half table might just be the toughest game you play this year!

* SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE – We want everyone to enjoy our game. We made some opponents so easy a monkey could beat them and others so hard you may never win, ever. Are you smarter than a monkey?

* QUICK GAME – Short on time? Take on our 10 favorite players in Quick Game mode. Or turn that dial up to 11 and take on Kao himself. You’ll need killer spin to win!

* BRING IT – We made Table Tennis Touch for people who love table tennis, who love quality and who love a challenge. If that’s you, bring YOUR best game to the table.

Review Quotes:
“A wonderfully well put together table tennis sim that deserves to be played by as many people as possible.”
– Pocket Gamer UK (Score: 90%)

“Table Touch Tennis mixes sports-sim realism with arcade escapism and stunning visuals to create a near-perfect storm of challenge and fun. Yakuto’s love for the sport is obvious and it results in an accessible yet deep game that even has a sense of humor.”
– Grab It Magazine (Score: 90%)

“Table Tennis Touch manages to not only capture the fun of one of America’s most enduring pastimes, but it does so in a way that makes full use of video games as a medium, allowing for new types of experiences while keeping the core fun of the game intact.”
– Arcade Sushi (Score: 85%)

#05 – Traps n’ Gemstones

Average Review Score: 93%
Platforms: iOS, Android
Developer: Donut Games
Released: July 23, 2014 (iOS), July 29, 2014 (Android)

Synopsis: Precious relics have suddenly started to disappear from a well-hid pyramid that has been guarded by Bedouins for generations, who claim to have spotted an unknown perpetrator. As a freelance archaeologist and expert on ancient explorations, you’ve been secretly called in to Egypt to help them solve the mystery.

Arriving at the pyramid’s entrance empty handed, your journey starts off by searching some well-known chambers for items and weapons to help you on your quest. But as you get deeper into the pyramid, you begin to realize that this mystery will require more than just a whip, a sharp mind and a good amount of explosives to unravel.

Traps n’ Gemstones is an adventurous platform game, among gamers typically known as the “Metroidvania” genre, from Donut Games; the developer behind chart-toppers Traffic Rush, Sunday Lawn, the “Rat On A” series and many others.

Key Features:

* Easy to use D-PAD controls.
* Non-linear gameplay: Walk around and explore freely.
* Non-destructive gameplay: When failing, you don’t restart from the beginning, but at the entrance of the current chamber.
* Map: Keep track of visited areas.
* Inventory: Keep track of found weapons, items and relics.
* Gameplay Variety: Run, roll, swim, slide, ride mine carts, etc.
* NO IN-APP PURCHASES: Buy the game, get everything.
* Real-time sound spatialization: Hear the sound dynamically adapt to your surroundings, from large chambers to underwater swims.

Review Quotes:

“An ambitious yet inviting freeform platform-adventure that strikes the perfect balance between depth and accessibility.”
– Pocket Gamer UK (Score: 90%)

“Traps n’ Gemstones is more than just another great release from Donut Games — it’s essential gaming for fans of classic back-tracking platformers.”
– Gamezebo (Score: 100%)

“Known for its short and sweet bite-sized gems, developer Donut Games has reinvented itself with Traps n’ Gemstones. This perfect blend of Metroidvania exploration and Indiana Jones like action makes for the ultimate long black: perhaps we’ve seen the last of Donut’s expressos.”
– Grab It Magazine (Score: 100%)

#04 – Threes!

Average Review Score: 93%
Platforms: iOS, Android, Xbox One (Xbox Live)
Indie Developer: Sirvo
Debut: February 6, 2014 (iOS)
Mobile Release Date: February 6, 2014 (iOS), Android (March 12, 2014)

Synopsis: Threes grows on you and you’ll grow with Threes! Explore our little game’s deep challenge and grow your mind beyond imagination!

Key Features:

* Endless challenge from one simple game mode.
* An endearing cast of characters.
* A heart-warming soundtrack.
* No IAP (In App Purchases) – Threes is a complete experience the moment you download it.
* Honorably mentioned for Excellence in Design by the Independent Games Festival. Apple Design Award Winner 2014

Review Quotes:

“You might as well delete Candy Crush Saga now.” – Pocket Gamer

“It’s surprisingly adorable, for a game starring numbers.” – Joystiq

“It’s the kind of game that embosses the rules on your brain within 30 seconds, but then compels you to spend the next two hours playing.”
– Pocket Tactics

#03 – XCOM: Enemy Within

Average Review Score: 93%
Platforms: iOS, Android, PC, Mac, Linux, SteamOS, PS3, Xbox 360
Developer: Firaxis Games; Publisher: 2K Games
Debut: November 12, 2013 (Xbox 360, PS3, PC, Mac)
Mobile Release Date: November 13, 2014 (iOS, Android)

Synopsis: XCOM: Enemy Within is a standalone expansion to the 2012 strategy game of the year (XCOM: Enemy Unknown)! Enemy Within features the core gameplay of Enemy Unknown plus more exciting content. Check out the new soldiers, abilities, enemies, maps, missions, and multiplayer mode for the fresh new strategy gaming experience!

Key Features:

* New Soldier Abilities: Research a new alien technology to advance the capabilities of your operatives. New technology includes genetic modifications of soldiers and mechanized cybersuits.

* New Weapons and Equipment: Give your operatives an extra tactical edge with new projects from your engineering team and the Foundry.

* New Enemy Threats: Adopt new tactics to counter the threats from two new alien types and a deadly new organization known as EXALT.

* New Strategic Resource: A valuable new alien resource, known as Meld, has been discovered. Secure it on the battlefield and use it carefully back at base to unlock new research and upgrades.

* New Story Elements: Investigate a terrifying threat in an abandoned fishing village, and defend the XCOM headquarters from alien attack in a series of new plat-driven missions.

* New Multiplayer maps, units, and abilities: Create your custom squad from a wider array of options and dominate your opponent in intense, one-on-one, turn-based matches.

Review Quotes:

“If you are even slightly interested in turn-based games, this is not one to miss.” – Touch Arcade

“The mobile version of this tactics gem is every bit as good as its PC & console brethren.” – 4Players

“There’s enough new here that Enemy Within almost feels like a completely different game.”
– Post Arcade

#02 VVVVVV

Average Review Score: 93%
Platforms: iOS, Android, Steam, PC, Mac, Linux, 3DS (eShop), PS Vita (PSN), Ouya
Debut: 2010
iOS Release: June 12, 2014
Indie Creator: Terry Cavanagh; Composer: Magnus Palsson

Synopsis: Help! Everyone has been teleported away randomly! As the heroic Captain Viridian, it’s up to you to find your friends, bring them back to safety, and save the universe!

VVVVVV is a platform game all about exploring one simple mechanical idea – what if you reversed gravity instead of jumping?
The game is designed not to artificially gate your progress. In VVVVVV there are no locks, no power-ups, no switches, nothing to stop you progressing except the challenges themselves.

Key features:

* Elegant, minimalistic level design.
* Challenging, fast and fun gameplay.
* Frequent checkpoints mean you never have to replay challenges you’ve already beaten.
* Over half an hour of chiptune music by composer Magnus Pålsson.
* Special game modes, including time trials and a no death mode.

Review Quotes:

“Upon completing that level, I was reduced to disturbingly orgasmic cries. I haven’t felt as good with a videogame, in that direct physical way, for quite a while.” [Quote slightly edited]
– Kieron Gillen, Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“I can’t say enough good things about VVVVVV. It’s Terry Cavanagh’s best game to date, and one of the best platformers I’ve ever played. If you have any interest in challenging platformers whatsoever, you’d be doing yourself a disservice not to pick up VVVVVV. 10/10”
– Anthony Burch, Destructoid

“…it would be wrong to let the sheer fiendishness of Cavanagh’s offering overwhelm any appreciation of the ceaseless elegance of the design.”
8/10 – EDGE

#01 – Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft

Average Review Score: 93%
Platforms: iPad, Android Tablets, PC & Mac (via Battle.net), Windows 8 Touch, iPhone & Android (2015)
Developer & Publisher: Blizzard Entertainment
Debut: March 11, 2014
Mobile Release Date: April 16, 2014 on iPad

Synopsis: Pick up your cards and throw down the gauntlet! In Hearthstone, you play the hero in a fast-paced, whimsical card game of cunning strategy. In minutes, you’ll be unleashing powerful cards to sling spells, summon minions, and seize control of an ever-shifting battlefield. Whether it’s your first card game or you’re an experienced pro, the depth and charm of Hearthstone will draw you in.

Key Features:

* JUMP RIGHT IN: Fun introductory missions bring you into the world of Hearthstone’s intuitive gameplay.

* BUILD YOUR DECK: With hundreds of additional cards to win and craft – your collection grows with you.

* HONE YOUR SKILLS: Play in practice matches against computer-controlled heroes of the Warcraft universe. Thrall, Uther, Gul’dan – they’re all here!

* COLLECTION TRAVELS WITH YOU: Your card collection is linked to your Battle.net account – enabling you to switch your play between tablet and desktop with ease.

* AND FIGHT FOR GLORY: When you’re ready, step into the Arena and duel other players for the chance to win awesome prizes!

Review Quotes:

“Blizzard has once again demonstrated their mastery of video games as a combination of competitive play and captivating artwork.”
– Slide to Play (Score: 100%)

“Hearthstone is not only an example of a free-to-play model done right, but it’s a must-play for card game enthusiasts everywhere. It’s incredibly easy to get into, the picturesque art is easy on the eyes, and best of all — it plays perfectly on an iPad.”
– Touch Arcade (Score: 100%)

“This World of Warcraft CCG spin-off is easy to pick up, almost impossible to put down, and most amazingly of all, totally free. Consider this your only warning.”
– 148Apps (Score: 100%)

Credit: Best review scores via Metacritic

PS: This is based on global averages and sadly only includes iOS games. However most games these days appear on both iOS & Android, still this list is biased towards iOS, so keep that in mind. If a game was Android-exclusive, you won’t find it here.

What were your favorite Mobile games of 2014?

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About the author

Josh Romero By Josh Romero: He is a lover of videogames, as well as metal music, Gilmore Girls, chatting, social networking, Phoenix Suns, reading, writing and many other nerdy things. Read his posts here and connect with him on Youtube.


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