It’s time for yet another entry into our long-running ‘Top 5 Games’ series, and this one is for our fellow iPhone and iPad users. If you are in search of the best games to play on your iOS device, then you have come to the correct place.
We went through hundreds of games on the App Store and the Apple Arcade catalog to compile this shortlist of iOS games. The download links are given below every game we have listed here so that you can try them out instantly.
If you are looking for other iOS games to try, click here to check out our previous selections from our ‘Top 5 Games’ series. We also separately cover the five best iOS apps every month, which you can check out here.
1. Neon Chrome
Neon Chrome is a dual-stick roguelike shooter played from a top-down perspective. First released for consoles and PC, the gameplay mechanics later adapted to touch-based controls for iOS devices.
The game takes place in a cyberpunk-themed dystopic society, where the Overseer rules everything from its massive Neon Chrome building. You play as a hacker who takes control of human clones and makes its way to the top floor to eliminate the Overseer.
Each clone has different sets of abilities and weapons, with five chapters and dozens of levels to clear. Each chapter also consists of several respawn checkpoints. As you progress through the levels, the coins you earn can be used to upgrade your attacks, health, energy, luck, and unlock enhancement slots. Furthermore, you can unlock cybernetic gadgets to drastically boost your stats and get new perks to work with. However, you will lose them if you die.
The best thing about Neon Chrome is that everything is procedurally generated, meaning that you get exceptional replayability out of the game. The environment has destructible elements, with massive explosions and gunplay opportunities. From regular security guards to huge hover tanks, there are several types of enemies. Depending on your playstyle, you can also take them down in dozens of ways. However, the enemy AI is quite complex, forcing you to take unique approaches to takedowns.
The developer has done a great job optimizing the game for several generations of iPhone and iPad, starting from iPhone 5 and 1st gen iPad mini all over to the newer Apple devices. While Neon Chrome has touch controls, you can also connect an MFi controller, DualShock 4, or an Xbox One gamepad to play it. It does have Game Center achievements as well.
2. Miles & Kilo
Miles & Kilo is a fast-paced retro platformer that follows the story of a young boy, Miles, and his pet dog, Kilo. They end up on a remote island after their plane broke down in a dangerous storm. While both of them manage to land unharmed, the plane is in pieces. On top of that, all of the important parts get stolen by a gang of thieves. It’s all on Miles and Kilo to embark on a chase to find the parts, re-assemble the plane, and escape the island.
The game has 36 unique stages scattered across five different worlds, packed with dozens of types of traps and obstacles, and various kinds of gameplay elements. The levels also consist of fruits and coins to collect. A timer and a death counter are shown on the top, which also accounts for your ranking on each stage. You will also encounter a boss fight in every world, with five bosses in total. Additionally, you will have to make your way through unique enemies on every stage.
The game will switch between Miles and Kilo every now and then. The simple on-screen touch control scheme makes complex moves like jumping, wall-jumping, sliding, somersaulting, rope-swinging, ziplining, fruit-throwing, and punching is straightforward to perform. Of course, you can connect a controller for the best arcade experience.
The visuals are also fantastic in this game. It resembles the art style of older SEGA games, while the high-resolution sprites and fluid animations give Miles & Kilo a sense of modernity. The chiptune soundtrack also sounds authentic and gives the retro vibes.
3. Star Wars: KOTOR
Bioware’s Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is considered one of the best RPG games of all time. The developers not only got the essence of the Star Wars franchise right but also revolutionized the role-playing genre of games. You can now play this classic masterpiece on your iPhone or iPad device.
While it’s not possible to talk about the storyline without going into spoilers, your journey will lead you to the Cantina of Tatooine, Jedi Enclave on Dantooine, the Wookie home planet of Kashyyyk, the Sith Academy on Korriban, and many more other planets from the Star Wars universe. You can design your own character, change your playstyle, engage in epic lightsaber combat, and use the Force to your advantage.
While the game costs $9.99 on the App Store, it’s worth every penny. Aspyr has done a great job porting the game on iOS, and the new touch-based user interface makes the game playable without a gamepad. However, it does support a wide variety of MFi and MOGA controllers. You also get dozens of achievements to complete.
Most mobile games require you to touch the screen for interactions. Blackbox takes a different approach and removes that requirement of tapping, swiping, or touching the screen at all. Instead, it uses your iPhone’s onboard sensors (e.g., accelerometer, gyroscope, microphone, proximity sensor, camera, etc.). It leaves the rest on you to solve challenging puzzles, the ones that make you think outside the box.
Blackbox is a puzzle game that doesn’t punish you for wrong attempts. Instead, the brain teasers are designed to make you more frustrated. There can be multiple challenges in one level, and you can proceed to the next level with one or two of the objectives unsolved. However, you will eventually have to come back to the levels to complete the objectives. Before you give up, you can also ask for a subtle hint. But, they are available only in limited quantity.
5. Mario Kart Tour
Mario Kart doesn’t need an introduction, as most of us have probably played it at least once in our lifetime. The brawler-style racing game is now also available to play on iPhone and iPad.
Mario Kart Tour offers the same gameplay as its full-fledged counterparts on Nintendo consoles. You can race with your favorite characters and make it to the finish line of racecourses that are inspired by real-world cities. As you make progress, you can unlock new karts, gliders, drivers to play with. Most of it can be earned by completing in-game challenges and earning Grand Stars.
Mario Kart Tour is free to play, and the in-game purchases are totally optional. However, you will have to sign up for a Nintendo account. You can enjoy multiplayer with friends and others for free as well. The game can be played in either portrait or landscape mode.
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