So, you like games, and you want to play them on your phone, but you want to do more than sling irritated birds at sickly looking pork. You want to play a real game, one with a story and bullets and cars and voice acting and maybe even multiplayer. The problem with this is you’ve let the list of top games fool you, let it trick you into believing that you wish for something that isn’t there, but actually, it’s been there all along. The following list is composed of games available for Android OS, though they may be available for iOS as well. Please remember that not all Android phones are created equal, and many of these games require or recommend a phone with a lot of RAM and a good processor.
1. Grand Theft Auto III (10 year anniversary edition): $4.99
I wasn’t surprised when I learned that Grand Theft Auto was available for Android. However, my bottom lip hit the floor when I scrolled down and read the big “III” underneath. Grand Theft Auto III was released on the PS2 and Xbox. This means that a game that was incredibly huge for last generation consoles can now be played on a phone that only weighs a few ounces.
This isn’t some watered-down GTA, this is the real thing. Everything is here. The voice acting, guns, radio stations, cars, pedestrians, missions, everything. And honestly, what better game can there be to entertain yourself while on the move than Grand Theft Auto. If you don’t have time to dive into the missions, you certainly can spare a moment to gun down civilians as well as the paramedics who arrive on scene to treat your victims.
2. Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation: $6.99
When I saw the Modern Combat series on the list of top Android games, I assumed that it simply capitalized on the name because it is very similar to the Modern Warfare trilogy as well as Battlefield 2: Modern Combat. My assumption was right, as it seems Gameloft happened to release the newest addition to the IP around the same time as Modern Warfare 3 was released. However, despite this less than classy marketing scheme, Fallen Nation really impressed me. It’s fully voice acted, includes several set pieces reminiscent of current-gen Call of Duty games, and has the best graphics I’ve witnessed on an Android game.
Along with these great graphics, Gameloft has managed to include surprisingly balanced and swift gameplay. Expect to go from manning a mounted gun on a helicopter to fighting indoors, and finally on street level in a short period of time. Enemies aren’t smart, but seem more realistic than I expected.
One thing hard to accomplish on a mobile FPS is good controls, and while you won’t feel like your holding an AK in your hands, you’ll at least be able to shoot it where you want (usually). Modern Combat 3′s controls are far from perfect, but if I wasn’t spoiled from constant use of a dual analog controller, I’d say the game controls well.
Now, if all of that wasn’t quite enough, Modern Combat 3 includes online multiplayer with up to a dozen players. So, if for some reason you feel the need to shoot people from around the world while riding the bus, by all means do it. Overall, this is a great game. Modern Combat 3 feels like a current-gen console game more than once, and it’s certainly worth the purchase for any FPS fan.
3. Real Racing 2: $4.99
EA is no stranger to mobile games. Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit was used to show the capabilities of gaming phones for quite a while, and games such as Mass Effect: Infiltrator, SimCity Deluxe, and NBA Jam show that Electronic Arts know what they’re doing when crafting a game for the mobile market (as long as you don’t count compatibility issues and customer support, but what else could you expect from EA). At some point someone at EA said, “Hey, we should make a racing game where cars actually feel like cars!”.So they got some sponsors and licensed some vehicles, spent a lot of money (not on a creative name, though) and made Real Racing.
Real Racing is a good game, but of course, as is the way with mobile games, the sequel is much better. The game features a handful of licensed cars that are all rendered beautifully, including fully rendered interiors that can be seen from the cockpit view (one of the many views available). The best part of the game is that it actually feels like I’m racing. It’s no Gran Turismo or Forza, but Real Racing 2 at least does it’s job, and is a relatively pain-free racer that can easily entertain racing fans when they’re not in front of a television.
4. FIFA 12
I hate to put EA on a list twice, but this time I had no choice. FIFA 12 is a great example of what can be done on an Android device. It has features that rival those of last-gen sports games, fluid animations, and a very natural feeling control system. Even though in most ways it is, FIFA 12 never really feels like a watered-down game. It feels like a sports game that has figured out how things should be done.
Features included in FIFA 12 include all the stats you could want, a season mode, shootout mode, decent commentary (not too repetitive surprisingly), and replay saves among others. Usually handheld versions of sports games feel like a game that came out a long time ago, but FIFA just doesn’t. When the goalie stops a shot, his hand actually hits the ball (as opposed to being in the same area of the ball as seen in the past).
Basically, if you need a sports fix while on the go, look no further. FIFA 12 is the best you’ll find.
XPLANE 9: $2.99
You might have heard of XPLANE before. It’s a flight simulator usually used on computers, at NASA, etc., and somehow, it made it’s way to phones. Who would’ve thought of taking a professional flight simulator and putting it on their phone? No idea, but whoever it was, thank you.
XPLANE 9 on Android isn’t quite the same simulator you’ll find at NASA, but you’ll be surprised at just how realistic it can be. This game features several different locations, weather types, planes (though you’ll have to pay more for the bigger jets); There is wind, and even simulated system failures.
It’d be nice to have a more realistic cockpit view, and you can’t see most of the plane’s instruments while looking at where you’re going. Gyroscope control is a nice touch, and works pretty well.