In addition to being a popular mobile OS, Android is one of the most bustling gaming platforms on Earth. If you have a recent Android phone or tablet, or even one that’s a couple of years old, you should be able to run a majority of the games available in the Google Play Store. That’s good because there are some stellar, console-quality games that you should be aware of, if you aren’t already in the know. Whether you just got a new Android phone, or you just want a few recommendations to use with your current phone, we’ve got you covered with the list below.
There’s a chance you’ve heard of Among Us even if you aren’t that tapped into gaming. It’s an online co-operative and competitive game where you work together with a team of space cadets, maintaining a space station — except one of you is an imposter whose goal it is to deceive everyone and eventually take over. As the imposter, it’s your job to be as sly and unassuming as possible, while everyone else is on edge that any of the others might be a back-stabber. It’s a simple game with a tense edge. Give it a try.
Call of Duty: Mobile
If you’ve always wanted to experience something that’s similar to playing Call of Duty on a console, definitely check out Call of Duty: Mobile. In a sense, it’s a simpler version of the console experience since, by default (though it can be changed), guns automatically shoot when you hover over an enemy. Yet it’s visually impressive for a mobile port, and it offers several guns and other customizable traits that should satisfy that itch for a mobile first-person shooter.
If you enjoy MOBA genre games on your PC, like Dota 2 or League of Legends, Pokémon Unite could scratch that itch while you’re on the go. While not as technically deep as either of those aforementioned games, Unite delivers on the core fundamentals of the competitive genre, and of course it’s deeply entrenched in the world of Pokémon. This game’s free, and it offers cross-play and cross-progression with the Nintendo Switch version.
Fortnite remains one of the most popular free games available on Android, even though it’s not so straightforward to install for a lot of people. If you want to download this battle royale game that pits you against up to 100 others in a huge, ever-changing map, non-Samsung users will need to head to Epic Games’ site on your phone, then find the link to install its app, from which you can install Fortnite. If you do have a Samsung phone, Fortnite is available exclusively within its Galaxy Store. All other phones from other brands will need to take the long route.
For more explicit instructions, check out our article on how to install Fornite on Android.
Dead Cells is yet another console-quality port made for Android phones. For those unfamiliar with the game, this is one of the better side-scrolling action games available today and is fun to play for hours on end. Developers are still supporting it with new content years after its original launch on PC. You start each run with a random set of weapons, and the levels are procedurally generated, meaning the items contained within levels (along with their layouts) are never exactly the same every time. So, despite the somewhat high difficulty curve, the more you play, the better the items you’ll get, which will help make the game a bit easier.
Genshin Impact is a global phenomenon, combining the aesthetic of anime and The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild with the gameplay of an MMO. It’s free to play (with paid cosmetics available), but if you want a game that offers up gorgeous visuals and rich, varied gameplay, check this one out.
Impressively, this game supports cross-save progression if you have a miHoYo account. So, you can pick up on Android right where you left off on PC or console.
Pikmin Bloom is one of Nintendo and Niantic’s latest mobile experiments. In this one, you grow little pikmin creatures from seeds as you walk. The game taps into your phone’s GPS location, and it’s designed to get you outside and moving around. While it’s less of a game than many of the entries on this list, with few objectives other than taking a certain amount of steps to develop seeds into pikmin, it can be a relaxing thing to play (especially if you’ve enjoyed previous Pikmin games from Nintendo consoles). If anything, it makes the act of walking around a little more fun.
Sky: Children of the Light
Sky: Children of the Light is the latest game from Thatgamecompany, responsible for relaxing games including Journey, Flower, and more. Sky is similarly gorgeous and mysterious, and it’s a must-play if you enjoy playing a game that lets you take in the visuals instead of constantly demanding twitchy reflexes to win. The character movement and flight controls feel good to use, and there’s more than enough collectibles and engaging story to warrant a free download.
Stardew Valley is an instant recommendation if you’ve played games like The Sims, Harvest Moon, or Animal Crossing. It borrows elements from all of those games, like interpersonal relationships, growing crops, building out your dream home, but it adds plenty of its own gameplay mechanics in the mix. You can choose to live your days making sure to buy the perfect birthday present for your best friends, fish to your heart’s content, or dive into the mines to gather rare minerals (fighting some spooky baddies along the way).