In the era of smartphones, many aspects of our lives have developed to meet our ever-evolving needs. And over the years, games have earned such prominence that no smartphone is complete without compatibility with them.
While there are broad genres of games today, the ones that tend to appeal the most are free. Let’s face it, most of us aren’t willing to spend on digital pleasure.
So what are the best free mobile games? Let’s check them out below, both for Android and iOS.
25 Best Mobile Games for Android
25. Temple Run 2
Temple Run 2 is the sequel to the infamous 2012 Temple Run developed by Imangi Studios. It’s an endless runner game where you have to navigate dangerous terrain with a monster behind you in hot pursuit.
This sequel delivers better graphics than its predecessor, and with over 9 million players right now, it is still relevant in 2021.
24. Beach Buggy Racing
Beach Buggy Racing was released in 2014; just like Shadow Fight 2, it still ranks as one of the best games of 2021. If you want a wild adventure with extreme and sometimes goofy animation that still manages to be fun, then Beach Buggy is just for you.
The game typically involves multiple players racing and eliminating their opponents along the way on a beach terrain. Nevertheless, the races can be so crazy that you may even drive on lava. In addition, it has a multiplayer option where you can invite your friends and race against them in real-time.
23. Shadow Fight 2
Although this game was released in 2014, it still ranks as one of the best Android action games to date. Developed by Nekki, Shadow Fight 2 takes an entirely different outlook to 2D roleplay games.
Unless you’re playing the special edition of the game where you can use Sensei, you can only play with Shadow. Shadow is the main character in the game who lost his body to ravenous demons after opening the Gates Of Shadows. The aim of the game is for you to defeat all the monsters he released and seal the Gates.
Nevertheless, you’ll have to go through their bodyguards and rack up cash with other modes like survival and tournament. You also have the opportunity to fight online in the Underworld. I like the game for its wide range of weapons, moves, and excellent storyline.
Vector is the second game from Nekki on this list. It is one of the most challenging games on Android devices to date. Even though it’s been nine years since its release, Vector still has a special place among Android mobile games to date. Its perfect storyline is a testament to Nekki’s skill in delivering awesome games.
You’ll play the role of a worker recruited by an organization seeking world domination. Running away from soldiers chasing you, you’ll have to navigate through the various obstacles you’ll find on your path. Also, you can employ different skills and tactics when you navigate the obstacles in the game to earn points.
Chessplode is a strategy game developed by Juanma Altamirano. The game offers the typical features of a 2D mobile chess game, but this time, with explosions. Chessplode isn’t a trendy game, but it has earned a high rating from the other five thousand plus players who play the game and me.
With its fantastic explosion animations and its minimalist interface, Chessplode pretty much has all the features a simple gamer needs. Furthermore, it has a multiplayer feature that lets you invite your friends and play with them in real-time.
2048 is a mentally challenging game developed independently by Italian developer Gabriele Ciruli. Since its release in 2014, the game has gained widespread interest and is one of the most downloaded puzzle games in the world today.
Critics typically appreciate it for its minimalist graphics. But as a player, you’ll most likely love it for its challenging nature and seamless animations. For example, you play it by sliding tiles with the same number together and combining them until they form the number 2048.
The numbers are typically factors of 2, and you can keep playing even after you reach 2048.
Hearthstone is a popular strategy game developed by Blizzard Entertainment and is a typical multiplayer card playing game. Players can win opponents by utilizing a variety of cards with unique abilities their character possesses. Its setting is medieval times as most strategy games are, and you can buy cards and unlock new characters with cash earned in the game.
18. Code Racer
Although this game isn’t as popular as the others in this entry, it still gets into the top 25. Code Racer isn’t one of the typical racing games you know. To pass each level, you’ll have to input commands for your vehicle to follow as it traverses different kinds of obstacles and bends on roads.
While there are 30 vehicles in this game, they do not have customization freedom as other games do. Nevertheless, it is most likely the most educational and challenging racing game there is as of today.
17. GTA: San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas was designed by Rockstar Games and is part of the GTA series Like its predecessors, it pretty much smashed the charts garnering millions of downloads in just a few weeks. It is typically roleplay since you have one playable character.
But it gives a more defined feel of the natural world as you go through the life of a gangster. Furthermore, the best part of this game is the availability of so many vehicles you can choose from to use. From simple saloon cars to trucks and even helicopters, what vehicle can you not drive in GTA? You also earn game cash by completing tasks and levels.
16. Alto’s Odyssey
Alto’s Odyssey is a sequel to the high-grossing Alto’s Adventure released by Noodlecake Studios. It is an endless runner adventure game and nails it with minimalist graphics and simple animations.
The gameplay involves holding the screen to navigate Alto, the main playable character, as he skis down the terrain. How he jumps and how swiftly he moves depends on how long you press your screen.
Furthermore, the music of Alto’s Odyssey is one of the most calming sounds you’ll hear. The composers deserve a Grammy for that one.
15. Subway Surfers
This classic game is still amongst the top games of 2021. Developed by SYBO Games, Subway Surfers currently has over a billion downloads. It is a typical endless runner game, where you have to navigate obstacles on the subway and uptown rail whilst being chased by an angry police officer and his dog.
Also, the characters you play can acquire unique accessories that make gameplay easier. For example, you could win a hoverboard-esque surfboard that helps your character ‘surf’ on the subway.
14. Sonic Dash 2
Sonic Dash 2 is the latest game in the Sonic Dash series. It is an endless runner game with playable characters from SEGA’s famous Sonic the Hedgehog game series. It’s in 3D like its predecessor, Sonic Dash, and offers spectacular, smooth graphics.
Furthermore, this game gives you the option of using each character’s unique powers while they are traversing the obstacle-filled road. There are typically two playable areas; the jungle and a more developed, robot-filled open section.
13. Asphalt 8: Airborne
Asphalt 8 is the predecessor to the critically acclaimed Asphalt 9. Like its sequel, it’s a popular racing game developed by Gameloft. It pretty much offers a fantastic gameplay experience with realistic features such as drift. You also have a wide variety of cars to choose from and limited customization options compared to Asphalt 9. Nevertheless, even though it’s eight years old, it’s still one of the best racing games for Android there are today.
12. Candy Crush Saga
The legendary Candy Crush Saga was developed and released by King in 2012 mainly for Facebook and web browsers. But it later got released for Android and was a massive hit.
It’s a puzzle game where you have to slide three or more matching candies together until you’ve reached a specific goal. However, you have limited moves, so you’ll have to be careful when using them. Apart from the minimalist gameplay and increasingly challenging levels, most players love Candy Crush for its satisfying crunch sounds.
11. Shadow Fight 3
Shadow Fight 3 is Nekki’s upgrade to the Shadow Fight 2. You’ll notice completely different gameplay as it depends on an internet connection, whereas you could play its predecessor offline. Also, it’s in 3D, which is a considerable upgrade.
Nekki allows gamers to customize a “flesh and blood” character that could be either male or female rather than the dark 2D outline of a male war veteran.
There are also many weapons and gear, but you’ll have to buy them with cards. Also, one noticeable feature in this game is the shadow power. It’s an ability that you can use in the game once the shadow bar is filled up.
10. Madden NFL 2021 Football
The second game from Electronic Arts on our list is the Madden NFL 2021 Football. It is based on American Football and offers a realistic gameplay with awesome graphics that give you the look and feel of the wonderful football game.
Gamers have the freedom to selects and customize teams. You can also customize the gear and equipment of each team. But, ultimately, NFL 2021’s central selling point is its updated roster. Every year, EA gets more downloads from the new players they add to the default teams.
9. UFC Mobile
UFC Mobile is the most popular Electronic Arts digital Mixed Martial Arts game. The gameplay is spectacular, and the graphics are amazing. You have the option of choosing several fighters on the roster and playing against opponents in real-time.
Furthermore, with points you earn from every game you win, you can unlock the high ranking characters and become almost unbeatable. EA managed to deliver a realistic feel with their top-notch animation. This feature makes the UFC game one of the best in its league.
8. Clash of Clans
Clash of Clans is a popular strategy game developed by Supercell. Since its release in 2013 for Android, the game has garnered several million downloads and is one of the best real-time strategy games on earth today.
The game is based on a fantasy theme, and as a player, you have the role of a tribal chief. Your task is basically to build your village and gather a strong army.
You’ll have to defend your village against attacks from enemy forces or stage an attack yourself. On each successful attack and defense, you earn some resources which you can use to train your army and get new equipment. It is undoubtedly one of the most addictive games of today.
7. PES 2021
Pro Evolution Soccer is one of the most common soccer video games of all time. The latest installment in the mobile series of the game — PES 2021 — delivers high-quality graphics that bests all other versions and keeps gamers attached to their screens.
Konami developed the game bearing in mind the customization needs of players who want to have the absolute best players on their dream teams. So, they give dedicated players with enough points the option of adding high-ranked players into any team of their choice. Of course, the game has a multiplayer mode, where you can invite your friends to play with you.
6. Need for Speed: No Limits
Electronic Arts pretty much killed it with its Need for Speed series, and Need for Speed: No Limits is the twenty-first addition to the series.
The game offers quality customization options while providing a car chase gameplay. However, NFS: No Limits doesn’t offer many customization features for playable vehicles. Nevertheless, this doesn’t stop it from being an excellent entry into this list
5. Asphalt 9: Legends
Asphalt 9 is the ninth installment in the infamous Asphalt series from Gameloft. Being one of the most played racing games in 2021, Asphalt 9 offers spectacular gameplay from Gameloft’s wealth of experience. The game is replete with about 135 unlockable cars, all from reputable brands like Lamborghini, Ferrari, Mitsubishi, BMW and others.
Furthermore, it offers better features than its predecessors, such as “touch drive” — a brand new control feature for beginners. Like the other Asphalt games, players can unlock cars as the player moves from one level of difficulty to another, acquiring cash.
This list would be missing a significant piece without the addition of Fortnite. Epic Games for Warner Bros developed Fortnite, and just like most of their games, it’s a smash hit.
The game is typically a battle royale where you have the option of picking from a variety of unlockable characters. Characters in the game are from comics, movie franchises and even other games.
It is a third-person shooter game where you have to kill all your opponents to be the last person standing. When you win, you receive game currency and points that you can use to upgrade your weapons or unlock a new character.
There’s so much more to say about the game, but why not find out for yourself by downloading it and having that epic gaming experience.
3. Critical Ops
Critical Ops is a relatively new first-person shooter game that has gained recognition over the past few years. Unlike Call of Duty, initially released for PCs, Critical Ops was originally developed for Android Devices.
Furthermore, Critical Force Entertainment developed the 3D game, and so far, has over 50 million downloads. It offers typical multiplayer features and, of course, a battle royale. It’s a definite go-to for players who want to practice with a bot or play with friends.
Critical Ops also has excellent customization features that enable you to modify your player’s appearance and weaponry.
2. PUBG Mobile
One of the most popular entries into this list is the Player Unknown Battlegrounds Mobile developed by the PUBG Corp. and PROXIMA BETA. It is a player versus player and battle royale game. With over 500 million downloads, it is one of the most popular mobile shooter games of all time.
As a player, you have the option of selecting one character amongst multiple ones and choosing from a vast arsenal of weapons. You can also upgrade your weapons with coins and points you earn while playing the game.
1. Call of Duty Mobile
Call of Duty is one of the top multiplayer shooter games today. COD undeniably is my personal favorite in this list when it comes to action and shooting. It was designed by Activision as an online multiplayer game.
It is typically a first-person shooter PVP game with an epic battle royale where 100 players scramble for survival. You have the option of customizing your character and the weapon you use as you earn cash and points in the game.
As of today, Call of Duty Mobile has earned multiple awards and is one of the highest-grossing games ever.
25 Best Mobile Games for iOS
25. Super Mario Run
Super Mario Run is a platform game developed by Nintendo for iOS originally in 2016. It is based on the infamous Nintendo game, Super Mario Bros. The game was highly successful and became an instant favorite among many players.
Like the original game, gamers play in the third person, navigating Mario through obstacles on his quest to save Princess Peach. Furthermore, he has to restore the Mushroom Kingdom destroyed by Bowser — Princess Peach’s abductor.
24. Stick War: Legacy
Stick War: Legacy is one of the best games from Max Games Studios. It combines simple graphics with superb sound and easy controls to form a fantastic gaming experience.
When playing the game, you can employ various characters ranging from austere Swordsman to Archer, and even Mage when playing the game. You aim to join forces with your army to defeat opposing forces.
23. Apple Knight: Action Platformer
Apple Knight is a 2D platformer game developed by Limitless. It has pretty basic graphics and very straightforward gameplay.
To win every level, you’ll have to use any of the playable characters to fight various evil creatures, wizards and other knights.
With a rating of 4.75 from the Apple Store, Apple Knight is no joke to iPhone users.
22. Plants vs. Zombies 2
I don’t think there’s anyone alive who has used a computer in the 21st Century that doesn’t know of Plants Vs. Zombies. Many gamers loved it for its excellent storyline and its addictive nature.
It is, therefore, no surprise that its sequel, initially released for iOS devices in 2013, was a huge hit. PopCan developed Plants Vs Zombies 2 for EA games, and as of now, the game has several millions of downloads from enthusiastic players.
Gameplay is pretty simple. To win a game, you’ll have to use plants with unique abilities to eliminate zombies trying to invade the garden. The game’s graphics and sound effects are pretty decent, and together, they add up to a beautiful game.
Brawlhalla is a 2D platformer game developed by Blue Mammoth and Ubisoft and was released in 2017. It has very simple graphics and a decent soundtrack.
I find this game very competitive and exciting because when playing the game, you’ll have to fight and push your opponent off the border of the stage. There are many modes including the typical player vs player, and also the battle royale mode.
The last player in the ring is typically the winner in all these modes. Interestingly, you can employ a range of unlockable weapons to add to your arsenal and even use special powers.
20. Fruit Ninja
Fruit Ninja is a classic game developed and released by Halfbrick Studios. It was initially available on iOS and had a special place in the hearts of long-time iPhone users.
When playing the game, you take the role of a ninja whose blade is sharp enough to cut through any fruit thrown. With swipes of your finger, you must slice every fruit that comes up on the screen, or you lose when you miss too many. It is a pretty exciting game with incredible graphics and excellent sound effects.
Roblox is a game developed by the Roblox Corporation, and it was released in 2012 for iOS. Although it is primarily a game development platform, it allows you to play the games that other developers using the app makes.
With Roblox, you have the freedom of creating your games and designing your character. For every successful match or task you accomplish, you earn a game currency called Robux. You can use Robux to develop your character further and improve your game.
Also, if you create characters and designs that are appealing enough, you can sell them for some real money. This game is one of the most valuable games available on iOS today.
18. Jetpack Joyride
Jetpack Joyride is one of the classic games released by Halfbrick Studios. It was initially developed for iOS in 2011 as an endless runner action-adventure game.
The game has a main character, Barry Steakfries, who wears a bullet releasing jetpack. Players try to navigate Barry by pressing and holding their screens while he elevates and maneuvers around obstacles.
While this game is ten years old, it’s still one of the best games there are today. As of now, there are over 2 million players, and multiple gameplay have been developed.
17. My Talking Tom
My Talking Tom is one of the best games that Outfit7 owns. It is the fourteenth installment in the My Talking Tom and Friends series and was released in 2013.
Outfit7 created a tabby cat simulation for people bearing in mind how thrilling it is to tend for a pet in your free time. Not only are gamers allowed to groom Tom in the game, but they also make it possible for them to see him experience real growth.
There are a variety of in-app games you can play with Tom as the main character. Furthermore, he has a vast wardrobe with unlockable, fancy and cool apparel.
As of now, there are millions of people still playing Talking Tom even though its sequel was released. I guess most people want a feel of the original.
16. MARVEL Contest of Champions
You may know MARVEL for their fantastic superheroes lineup and exciting comics. But most gamers that aren’t exposed to the comic world know MARVEL for their games.
One particular game that stands out among the incredible ones they’ve made over the years is Contest of Champions. It was developed by Kabam and Raw Thrills and released in 2014.
Since then, it’s been a significant hit and has been downloaded by millions of gamers. In the game, you can build your roster of superheroes, unlocking each character one at a time as you progress. It’s typically a player vs player game where you face off a computer or another gamer online.
15. SimCity BuildIt
Are you’re looking for a virtual world to immerse yourself in where you’re the supreme lord willing to build your modern empire? Then this game is just for you. SimCity is a legendary game franchise that has existed for over a decade now.
However, the developers, TrackTwenty, took on the Electronic Arts’ game and upped it to the max creating realistic graphics and a fantastic game overall.
SimCity BuildIt involves you, the mayor, building and improving your city. The tasks are realistic, and of course, there are many issues you’ll have to solve.
14. Minion Rush
Whether you’re a fan of the hit movie series — Despicable Me — or not, you’ll love the game that Gameloft was able to make from them. Illumination and DreamWorks provided the concept of the game, and Gameloft just took it to the moon!
Minion Rush is an endless runner game where you have to traverse through several plains and maneuver through many obstacles on your path. Did I mention that you have the option of choosing and customizing the minion you play with?
Over ten million active gamers are playing the game, and it is a recipient of multiple awards.
13. Alto’s Adventure
Alto’s Adventure is the first game in the Alto franchise. Team Alto and Snowman developed it. Released in 2015 by Noodlecake Studios, the game has had millions of downloads over the past six years.
This game has fantastic minimalist graphics that are very aesthetic. And the soundtrack is just perfect.
Another thing that makes this game so interesting is that it isn’t complex regarding control. Typical gameplay in Alto’s Adventure involves pressing and holding the screen to control Alto as he navigates the snowy mountain terrain.
12. Clash Royale
Clash Royale is one of the best multiplayer games that exist today. Supercell, the game’s developer, mainly designed the game to be pretty addictive. Within a few months of the game’s release, several millions of gamers had downloaded the game.
Clash Royale is a strategy game where two players try to destroy each other’s towers. The one whose tower gets destroyed loses. Furthermore, there is also a team multiplayer mode where two teams of two players face each other.
11. The Battle of Polytopia
The Battle of Polytopia is a strategy game developed and released by Midjiwan AB in 2016 for iOS. And while it bore the name “Super Tribes” for four months, most players prefer the more epic name it takes now.
Its single-player and local network game modes are free and allow you to practice and play against your friends.
The game involves you building your tribe to form an empire. You’ll also have to fend off and attack other tribes seeking to defeat you and take your resources.
10. Dead Trigger 2
Next on my list is Dead Trigger 2. If you’re a fan of post-apocalyptic mayhem, then you’ll fall in love with this game.
Dead Trigger 2 is the sequel to the blockbuster game Dead Trigger. Developed by Madfinger Games and released in 2013, this game has seen several million downloads over the past eight years. As of now, there are over 2 million active gamers still playing it.
Furthermore, it’s a first-person shooter game where to win, you’ll have to kill all the zombies in the vicinity. There is a range of weapons to choose from that can be unlocked with coins you earn as you progress in the game.
9. Pokémon GO
When it comes to making games, Nintendo and The Pokémon Company have a wealth of experience. However, to give gamers a deeper feel of the game, they had to bring in Niantic, who developed and published their bestselling match in 2016.
Pokémon GO is an Augmented Reality game that gives users the freedom of transforming their environment into a Pokémon habitat. The game aims to catch as many unique species of Pokémon as you can.
You can use the points and coins you earn to purchase merchandise that helps you attract rarer species. With over a billion downloads, I think it’s safe to say that most of the world considers this game just as interesting as I do.
8. Lords Mobile
Lords Mobile is an online multiplayer strategy game developed by IGG. It was released in 2016, and since then, has been a significant hit.
The gameplay is pretty simple, and to progress in the game, you’ll have to build your virtual army. Also, to avoid loss, you will have to fend off attacks from enemies and stage some of your own to win resources from them. There are several million active players in the game as of today.
7. NOVA Legacy
NOVA Legacy is another game from Gameloft on this list. It’s typically one of the best games from Gameloft and was released in 2017.
It’s a roleplay single-player and multiplayer space adventure game. In the classic mode, your character is Kal Wardin, a NOVA marine adept with combat skills. He navigates through abandoned ships, Jungles, and even an Alien city to battle the evil Xenos forces.
On the other hand, in the multiplayer mode, you play as a NOVA cadet with any weapon you have in your arsenal from the classic mode and fight other players in real-time. One of the best features of NOVA Legacy is its wide range of futuristic weaponry.
6. Threes! Freeplay
Threes! Freeplay is the free version of the popular iOS puzzle game, Threes! The game was developed by Sirvo and released in 2014. Furthermore, Threes was the best iPhone game of 2014.
When playing Threes, you have to slide tiles of the same number to merge them. As more tiles appear in the grid, they keep forming more significant numbers until the entire grid is filled up and you cannot move. That is when the game is over.
5. Mortal Kombat Mobile
When it comes to making games, NetherRealm pretty much makes only iconic games. And Mortal Kombat Mobile proves just that.
Based on the infamous Mortal Kombat series, MK Mobile is one of the best selling mobile game franchises of all time. Its spectacular graphics and unique sound effects are mainly some of the reasons gamers love it so much.
It is action-filled with characters whose special moves and fatalities warm the heart of every dedicated gamer. But if you aren’t turned off by blood and epic destruction, then this game is just for you.
4. Injustice: Gods Among Us
Fourth on my list is one of Warner Bros’ highest grossing games of all time — Injustice. NetherRealm Studios pretty much killed it with this game, adopting several DC characters. In addition, they further implemented a dark storyline that helps to solidify the sheer brutality of the game.
The graphics are fantastic, and the gameplay is unique. When playing the game, you have the opportunity of building your roster by unlocking special characters. The fight sequences are impressive, and the moves are just unique.
Released in 2013, Injustice is typically an online player vs player action game.
3. Among Us!
Among Us is one of the best games available on iOS today. Being a thrilling online multiplayer, we can’t expect less. Innersloth developed the game in 2018, and it wasn’t a major hit until 2020
Among Us is a space-themed game involving up to fifteen players called Crewmates. There are usually incognito “Impostors” among these players who are bent on eliminating other players without being detected. To win the game, the Crewmates have to identify the impostors and eliminate them successfully.
Finally, Among Us has won several awards, including the Kid’s Choice Awards for best game.
2. CSR Racing 2
CSR Racing 2 is one of the best racing games on iOS so far. Developed by Zynga for NaturalMotion, the sequel to the hit drag racing game exceeds most expectations.
The graphics of the game are hyper-realistic, and the soundtrack is just amazing. What’s more? There are several classy cars from the brands you love just to choose from. Playing this game will give the best racing experience you can get on an iOS device.
1. Free Fire
Garena’s Free Fire is undoubtedly one of the best games of all time. It offers an in-depth, realistic experience of an actual survival front. Released in 2017, millions of gamers have downloaded the game.
Free Fire is an online 3D battle royale involving up to 50 players at once, each trying to kill other players’ avatars while struggling to be the last man standing.
One of the main selling points of the game is its many customization features. There is a wide range of unlockable characters with several upgradeable weaponry and gear.