Mandatory Top 10 of the 2010s: The Best Mobile Games of the Decade
This past decade has really seen mobile gaming come into its own as it went from being a mere distraction to full-fledged titles featuring touch-based gameplay. As a result, it’s been a real treat for gamers as they don’t even need a console to play fantastic titles. As the decade comes to a close, Mandatory took a look at the 10 best mobile video games of the decade.
Cover Photo: The Pokemon Company
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10. 'Clash Royale'
Part real-time strategy game and part card game, Clash Royale is a fantastic blend of genres. Players battle other players online as they attempt to destroy the opposition's tower. Battles are quick enough for it to be a regular part of your commute, but fun enough to make you spend hours in its world. While it does feature some gross monetization options, the core gameplay remains so phenomenal that it has to make the list.
Photo credit: Supercell
9. 'Fire Emblem Heroes'
One of Nintendo's first mobile games is also still their best as Fire Emblem Heroes has fantastic tactical RPG gameplay while also having gacha elements that keep players coming back for more. Featuring a huge cast of characters from the long-running series, it's a great celebration of Fire Emblem history. It's helped out by featuring smaller levels that are perfect for quick battles, making it feel different than the console and handheld installments.
Photo credit: Nintendo
Australian indie game Florence is a heart-wrenching title that shows the growth and decay of a relationship. All of its narrative is supplemented by the player solving puzzles, such as an awkward first date eventually working out and facing an unsolvable final puzzle when the relationship isn't going to work out. In just 30 minutes, Florence manages to tell an incredible story that is all too relatable.
Photo credit: Mountains
One of the best collectible card games ever made, Hearthstone features plenty of iconic characters from Blizzard's Warcraft series. Ever since it was released in 2014, the game has been regularly updated with expansions and new features. The fact that it's still popular over half a decade shows just how good this card game is, and it doesn't seem likely to go away any time soon.
Photo credit: Blizzard
6. 'Mario Kart Tour'
The newest release to make this list is Nintendo's latest mobile offering, Mario Kart Tour. This touchscreen-based game is a blast to play and is completely faithful to the popular kart racing series. It's a surprisingly full-featured offering and has a better array of single-player content than its console brethren. This is thanks to the addition of missions, which haven't been seen in the series since Mario Kart DS.
Photo credit: Nintendo
5. 'Monument Valley'
Developed by a small London-based studio, Monument Valley is an excellent puzzle game that has the player leading a princess through mazes filled with optical illusions. They do this by manipulating the world itself so that she can pass through it. It's one of the most gorgeous mobile games ever made, and its puzzles start off as simple but quickly get much more complex. Several expansions have added extra levels as well.
Photo credit: Ustwo Games
4. 'Pokemon Go'
If any mobile game defined this generation it is Niantic's Pokemon Go. By using augmented reality tech and online maps, it managed to bring Pokemon to real life and get gamers to go outside in order to catch them. Since its initial release, the developer has added hundreds of extra pocket monsters to catch and a ton of new features such as trainer battles. It's still going strong, even if it isn't the cultural milestone it once was.
Photo credit: The Pokemon Company
Reigns takes the user interface of Tinder and applies it to ruling a kingdom. Players will change policy rather than trying to match, and will have to balance their kingdom's happiness and well-being to be successful. It's a huge balancing act and one that is infinitely replayable as they craft a unique story each playthrough.
Photo credit: Nerial
2. 'Ridiculous Fishing'
Vlambeer's Ridiculous Fishing lives up to its name. It has players catching as many fish as possible and then shooting them out of the sky for cash. Despite being simple mechanically (the player tilts their phone to catch fish and then taps their screen to shoot them), it's a fantastic title with a near-perfect gameplay loop. Despite releasing in 2013, it's still one of the best mobile titles and well worth experiencing.
Photo credit: Vlambeer
A lot of mobile games are perfect for short spurts, and Threes! is essentially the best of that type of game. The puzzle game has player matching together identical numbers and adding them together. The goal is to get the play field to the highest sum possible, and trying to best your high score can become downright addictive. It's one of the best time wasters, and its lack of commitment means players can always come back to it for a few minutes.
Photo credit: Servo