Mobile gaming: ten of the best

As the next-gen consoles find their feet, Nick Gillett takes a look at their cheaper, stranger and quirkier rivals from the world of mobile gaming

Lost Toys, iOS
£2.49 (Barking Mouse Studios)

Lost ToysAdrift in a room full of mangled toys, your job is to make them whole, rotating sections to slot them back together, like a series of oddly shaped Rubik’s Cubes. With no timer and a lush piano accompaniment, this is cubist, ambient entertainment at its best.

Continue?9876543210, iOS 
£2.49 (starvingeyes)

Continue?9876543210The developer claims this game was inspired by “existential road trips into nowhere, Peruvian jungle drugs, and a brush with death”. It shows. Its story of a dead video game character is a string of obscure, mechanically bereft mini-games.

Fightback, iOS
Free (Ninja Theory)

FightbackIn Fightback, gang members queue for their turn to batter you as if they’re recreating the fight from Oldboy. The precision timing necessary to see them off is beautifully metered, but undermined by the game’s insistent attempts to hustle you for coins.

Spiral Episode 1, iOS
£2.49 (Pixel Hero Studios)

Spiral Ep 1Action RPG Spiral Episode 1 has ambitions way beyond its production budget. That means awkward controls, your character blithely standing in the way of places you need to tap, and phoned-in voice acting.

Dragon FingaiOS
Free (Another Place Productions)

Dragon FingaBeat up an endless stream of malefactors by tapping your index finger on them. Mindless entertainment that is the epitome of pointless.

Castle Doombad, iOS
£1.99 (Adult Swim)

CastledoombadThis solid little tower-defence game has you securing a kidnapped princess from the ministrations of would-be heroes, who must be impaled, incinerated, devoured or blown up to prevent them from rescuing her.

Gemini Rue, iOS
£2.99 (Wadjet Eye Games)

Gemini RueOriginally released on PC, Gemini Rue is a homemade-feeling piece of sci-fi noire, in which it’s always night and it never stops raining. It’s well-maintained atmosphere isn’t matched by puzzles whose solutions turn out to require too much trial and error.

Jet Car Stunts 2, Android & iOS
Free (True Axis)

Jet Car StuntsOutrageously difficult and glorying in the ruthlessness of its challenges, tracks in Jet Car Stunts 2 are collections of disconnected geometric slabs suspended in mid-air, demanding speed, steering and delicate use of rocket propulsion to get even close to the finishing line, rather than plunging to your doom.

RoboCop, Android & iOS
Free (Glu Games)

RoboCopRoboCop mutely hunches behind cover, popping out to shoot at weak points marked on a brief and uninspiring procession of armed assailants. It’s a shoot first, earn upgrades later set-up that borders on the tedious.

Kami, Android & iOS
£1.49 (State Of Play Games)

KamiAlthough simple to grasp, Kami’s exquisitely subtle paper-folding puzzles are considerably more complex than they first appear. Mentally taxing, but thanks to the soft rustle of paper and the fact that it never once tests your dexterity or reaction time, strangely relaxing. Kami is a game of unusual elegance.

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