mobile-apps-310314Mobile games

From casino to first person shooter to noir puzzle games (we didn’t know that was a thing either) mobile games keep getting better and better.

The mobile gaming industry has come on like gangbusters since hitting the scene during the late 1990s. Things have come a long way since the release of Snake, the first ever mobile game back in 1997. Games keep getting better and more sophisticated: better graphics, more complex storylines, more user-friendly gameplay and an increasingly diverse range of styles and themes. This can be seen especially in the realm of mobile casino games, but there are tons of other fantastic non-casino games available as well. This piece will introduce you to some of the best new games on the scene, as well as one that appeared a few years ago but remains on the top of everyone’s list of favorites.

The edgy upstart: Framed

This noir-themed game from Love Shack Entertainment, an upstart tech firm out of Australia, is bound to turn heads this year. The dark, dreary graphic design sets the tone for the game. The concept is simple but novel: players must successfully rearrange images in a comic strip in order to move on to the next round. The images can be arranged however the player sees fit; there is no right or wrong answer. But they must be arranged so that the player evades the police, and death itself. As the player advances the plot thickens and the strips become more complex. This game won numerous awards late last year after being released on PC, and we expect it to be a big hit in 2014 following the release of the mobile version. Framed is available on the iOS platform.

The gift that keeps on giving: Fruit Ninja

Ok, this mobile arcade game has been around for awhile. But it just won’t go away! We included it on this list because it is certain to be one of the most popular mobile games this year (and probably in 2015 as well). iResearch reported that it has been the most downloaded game in China in the year to date. Fruit Ninja was first released by Halfbrick studios back in 2010 and instantly became a smartphone institution.

This game is as simple as it gets. Fruit is thrown into the air and the player slices it using the touch screen on his or her phone. Players receive bonus points for slicing multiple pieces in one swipe (as the game progresses, one has to do this to survive). If three pieces of fruit fall without being sliced by the player, the game ends. To spice things up bombs are occasionally thrown onto the screen and will blow up if swiped, also ending the game.

Fruit Ninja perfectly captures what the mobile gaming market is all about: simplicity, convenience and mindless entertainment. People want to grab their phone to kill that extra five minutes waiting in line at the post office or the barbershop, and this game provides a perfect way to do that.

We didn’t know mobile games could do that: Modern Combat 5

Goldeneye changed the gaming world back in 1997, becoming what many called “the first great first-person shooter.” As great as that game was (and still is) the genre has come a long way. First-person shooters (FPSs) are now played via mobile devices (most never envisioned that happening), and some of them are surprisingly sophisticated.

The Modern Combat series from Gameloft has been called the “Call of Duty of mobile,” and for good reason. The series some of the best graphics ever seen in a mobile game and features a full-length campaign mode as well as multiplayer. Modern Combat 5 will be released on iOS this year, and we expect it to be instantly hailed as the best mobile FPS game to date.

Get to the gambling already: Big Fish Casino

This mobile casino app available on both the iOS and Android platforms was actually launched last year. We included it on this list because we think that 2014 will be the year in which it really blows up. Big Fish has been developing “freemium” social media games for some time, but last year it decided that it needed to boost its profits and come out with a real-money gambling app. That’s where the real-money version of Big Fish Casino comes in (the free-to-play version is still available as well). This app offers all of the classic Vegas-style table games like blackjack, roulette and poker. What is unique and cool about it is that Big Fish has coupled this with what it does best: fun, innovative games like Once Upon a Time in Chicago, 3D Blackjack, Hot Casino Blackjack and Governor of Poker Texas Tycoon.

That’s really the best thing about this app. Big Fish shows an extraordinary ability to think outside the box in giving its users a diverse, out-of-the-ordinary gambling experience. And if they want to take a break from casino games (no that we would ever want to) they can always play Big Fish’s classic social media games like FishAO, Pets in Distress and Hidden Express.