10 Great Mobile Gaming Genres and Their Best Games

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10 Must-Try Mobile Gaming Genres and Their Best Games

Mobile gaming is not young anymore, no matter how much old-school gamers will make it sound that way. Over the last 20 years, mobile gaming has grown from simple, lightweight experiences to fully-fledged games. Over that time, it’s ventured into virtually every genre out there. So, let’s take a look at 10 of the best games for mobile gaming genres, along with some of the best games in each genre that you could download and play today!

1.  Puzzle

This is one of the most common mobile gaming genres and it is the timeless king of mobile games. With touchscreen inputs and smaller processors, puzzle games are certainly the most accessible genre for mobiles to handle. They’re also perfect for the format, to help fill those dull moments when you’re commuting or simply sitting on the toilet.

The best mobile puzzle game: Monument Valley 2. This architectural puzzler takes you on a journey through impossible structures, requiring you to shift your perspective to navigate around complex buildings. The original is great too!

Honorable mentions: Tetris, The Room Series

2.  Strategy

A very popular game in the early years of gaming, strategy games are also incredibly well suited to mobile. Their focus on turn-based or slow-paced, strategic thought means that less stress goes into the processor and more onto the player’s decision-making. This is great, as that means strategy games can get pretty complex without melting your phone.

The best mobile strategy game: XCOM: Enemy Unknown. This turn-based squad strategy game is a masterpiece ported over from the PC. Lead elite soldiers against an alien invasion with strong roguelike and storytelling elements.

Honorable mentions: Into the Breach, Hearthstone, Civilization VI, and Clash of Clans. Buy Clash Royale Gems to get ahead. Chess.

3.  Role-Playing Games (RPG)

If you’re looking for more extensive games with sprawling narratives and strong character development, RPGs might be what you’re looking for. Create your character and explore worlds in this genre. While it’s better suited to stronger consoles, there are plenty of great games.

Best mobile RPG game: Genshin Impact—this sprawling online RPG takes a breath of the wild and smashes it together with an MMO. It’s great.

Honorable mentions: Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition, Final Fantasy Series, Knights of the Old Republic

4.  Narrative / Story

We all love a good story, and mobile can be a great place to find narrative games. Especially those more innovative experiences developed by small studios and even individuals.

The best mobile story game: Florence. This emotional indie short is immediately memorable thanks to its tender aesthetics and careful interaction design.

Honorable mentions: The Walking Dead, Life is Strange.

5.  Competitive

Bring eSports to your mobile with some competitive games. While competitive titles are best suited to PC—and sometimes consoles—many have been ported to mobile to let players engage even more. Just make sure you’re playing against other mobile gamers; otherwise, you may be at a disadvantage.

The best mobile Competitive game: Fortnite. This needs no introduction, does it?

Honorable mentions: PUBG Mobile, Apex Legends Mobile, and Call of Duty: Mobile

6.  Simulation

Slow it down a bit with a simulation title. These allow you to experience the world from a different perspective. Slowly building up a strategy and way of life.

The best mobile Simulation game: Stardew Valley. This indie hit is one of the best simulation games, period. So we’re blessed that it’s also on mobile.

Honorable mentions: Cities: Skylines, The Sims Mobile, and Flight Simulator 2020 Mobile.

7.  Arcade

The charm of arcade games is undeniable. Many of them may be based on old design principles, but they have remained a key part of gaming for decades for a good reason—they are addictive, enjoyable, and totally engaging.

The best mobile Arcade game: Tetris. The kind of arcade games. Few contenders.

Honorable mentions: Pac-Man, Crossy Road, Galaga.

8.  Card Games

Card Games

Somewhere between strategy games, arcade games, and puzzlers, you have card games. There are plenty of different styles here. From narrative experiences to roguelikes to multiplayer games. They are also incredibly well suited to mobile, thanks to their simple graphics and interactions.

The best mobile Card game: Slay the Spire. Perhaps the best indie card games in decades; and it’s on mobile too!

Honorable mentions: Hearthstone, Solitaire Collection, Marvel Snap.

9.  Casual

Another chill genre for crafting, exploring, relaxing, and more. Even the most ardent gamers have come to appreciate the charm and value that casual games bring. Previously, “serious” gamers used to deride casual games. Especially when engaged frequently over plenty of weeks or months.

Best mobile Casual game: Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp. Animal Crossing is perhaps the quintessential casual game, so no wonder it is also the best on mobile!

Honorable mentions: Candy Crush Saga, Angry Birds.

10. Auto Battlers/Idle Games

Want the thrill of an RPG but without having to pay attention to it all the time? Well, you can pile hours into auto battlers which build up for you. This unique genre is almost exclusive to mobile, as it’s so well suited to the format. That means that auto battlers are a must for most mobile gamers.

best mobile Auto-Battler: AFK Arena. This literally has it in its title. And is such a quintessential auto battler. This idle RPG sees you collect heroes and assemble powerful formations, letting you watch as they reap the rewards for you.

Honorable mentions: Teamfight Tactics Mobile, Myths of Ascension, Tap Titans 2.

Bonus: Racer

Racer games are kind of controversial on mobile devices. While mobiles offer a great and tactile interface for racing, most racing fans will prefer the graphics and additional functionality of a console. Nonetheless, mobile is a common place to enjoy racers.

The best mobile Auto Battler: Mario Kart Tour. This series needs no introduction. Tour may be the most controversial in the series, but it’s still a competent racer and one of the best on mobile.

Honorable mentions: Real Racing 3, Asphalt 9: Legends, Hill Climb Racing 2.