Best mobile games of January 2014

Looking for a new game to play on your mobile device? Here's our pick of the best released in January 2014.

Looking for a new game to play on your mobile device? Here's our pick of the best released in January 2014.

(Credit: Chillingo)

Bloodstroke

Trailer

Action film director John Woo has made his first ever mobile game. Bloodstroke puts you in the role of Phalanx elite private security agent Mai Lee, codenamed Lotus, going up against the gangs of Hong Kong to protect her charge, Dr Koorse, with an arsenal of weapons in a top-down action bloodbath. What separates it from the pack? A combination of Woo's signature fight choreography with beautiful, brush-style art.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$2.99

(Credit: Alexander Trowers)

Glyph Quest

Trailer

The work of a couple who went indie when they found they were expecting a baby, Glyph Quest is the type of game we just can't resist. Like Dungeon Raid, Pixel Defenders and 10000000, from which it draws inspiration, it uses match puzzling to form the basis of combat. As a mage, you cast attack spells by chaining together orbs of the same element to defeat monsters. There's an element of Pokémon there, too: as you encounter new monsters, they are added to your bestiary.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: Free (full game AU$1.99)

(Credit: Warner Bros)

Lego Star Wars Microfighters

Micro Fighters is a line of Star Wars Lego, and this brings it to the screen in a Lego Star Wars-themed bullet hell, with classic craft that you can pilot such as X-wings, TIE fighters, the Star Destroyer and Millennium Falcon. It. Is. Glorious.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$0.99

(Credit: Tin Man Games)

Gamebook Adventures 9: Sultans of Rema

Melbourne's Tin Man Games is making quite a niche for itself with its Gamebook Adventures, and we're always delighted to see a new one make an appearance. In the ninth title of the "Gamebook Adventures" series (some have been outside the main series, such as those penned by Ian Livingstone ), you're travelling to a fictional Middle East — Rema — to try and win political support for the power struggles of Orlandes.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$5.99 (Android); AU$6.49 (iOS)

(Credit: JoyBits)

Doodle Kingdom

Trailer

From the creator of Doodle God comes Doodle Kingdom — a game that sees you combining ingredients (in the Doodle God formula) to build — or destroy — your own kingdom. Having a goal beyond "put things together to see what works" makes the gameplay much more compelling, and a new battle mode keeps the gameplay fresh and interesting.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad; Windows Phone
Price: AU$1.99 (Android and iOS); AU$4.99 (Windows Phone)

(Credit: Chillingo)

simian.interface

Trailer

simian.interface is a bit of an odd duck. It's an interesting little puzzle game: you have to navigate squares so that they line up with other squares — which isn't always an easy task, since one finger moves all the squares at once, and you have to figure out how to move in order to line them up precisely. Secondly, the premise of the game seems to be that you're a monkey trying to learn how to use an interface in a lab environment. It's a little creepy.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$0.99

(Credit: Thomas Bowker)

Lyne

Trailer

We love zen puzzlers: something that doesn't give you a timeframe in which to complete the puzzle, but will make you use your head and plan out your moves carefully. Lyne is like that. You have to draw lines between corresponding shapes on a grid — connecting all the triangles, then connecting all the squares. What makes it tricky is that the lines are not allowed to cross.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad; Windows Phone
Price: AU$2.99

(Credit: Beamdog)

Baldur's Gate II

Trailer

Classic isometric dungeon crawler Baldur's Gate II has, like its predecessor, now been rebuilt from the ground up for iPad. It's a little on the pricy side — especially when you factor in purchasable characters via IAP — but it's still a bit of a bargain. For the base price of AU$15.99, you get the original Shadows of Amn campaign, plus six expansions, and you can even find other gamers online for multiplayer games.

Platform: iPad
Price: AU$15.99

(Credit: Sega)

Rhythm Thief and the Paris Caper

Trailer

This is a sort of abridged remake of the 3DS title Rhythm Thief & The Emperor's Treasure, in which you play as an art thief in Paris who has uncovered a plot to resurrect Napoleon Bonaparte. The core gameplay involves, of course, rhythm gaming in the style of Dance Dance Revolution (although on a touchscreen, not a dance mat, obviously), with minigame elements thrown in to mix it up. It's not punishingly difficult, and the art and control system are flawlessly polished.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$10.49

(Credit: Adult Swim)

Castle Doombad

"Tower defence" usually refers to placing towers to defend your territory, but in Castle Doombad, what you are defending is the tower. As the villainous Doctor Lord Frankenstein, you have to keep your kidnapped princess from being rescued by placing traps and minions all over your castle, harvesting screams to power your devious devices. It's clever, funny and extraordinarily addicting.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$2.99

(Credit: Unity Games)

Archangel

Trailer

Another isometric dungeon crawler, Archangel takes one of the oldest stories there is: the eternal battle between good and evil. The forces of hell are mobilising to wage war on heaven; as an Archangel, you must deliver a smackdown so severe, they never even think of doing so ever again.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$2.27 (Android); AU$1.99 (iOS)

(Credit: Sega)

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

Trailer

Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing was a solid little racer on mobile, with clean controls and some pretty awesome tracks and characters. This new game mixes things up a little. It's the same premise; racing around trap- and power-up-laden tracks to secure the title of champion; but this time, the tracks and vehicles are a little more... transformative. With air- and water-based racing coming into play, your vehicles can transform into planes and boats for a game that will test your racing skills to the limit. Be warned: there's some pretty hefty IAP going on.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$5.49

(Credit: Mass Creation)

Draw Slasher

Trailer

Draw Slasher, originally made for the PlayStation Vita, has been on Android for some time (although under the developer name Gamelion, so tread with caution), and now it's arrived for iOS. It's a little like Fruit Ninja: you use your finger as a blade to hack and slash away at your foes, which are... pirate ninja zombies. Naturally.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$1.29 (Android); AU$2.99 (iOS)

(Credit: Bytesized Studios)

Atomic Fusion: Particle Collider

Trailer

Ever wanted to be a physicist? Well, this game won't make you one. It may, however, help you learn the periodic table... by having you create all the elements in it. With your atom, you have to collect the rings of positively and negatively charged energy, tapping to change polarity at a pretty rapid pace, and collecting electrons for energy. It's sciencetacular!

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: Free

(Credit: Kairosoft)

Ninja Village

Kairosoft is up to its town-management simulation shenanigans again. Ninja Village plays out a fair bit like Dungeon Village: you have to build your town with enough resources to attract residents, train your ninjas, and send them out to do battle — all the while making sure you have enough left in the coffers to pay yearly taxes. Fun!

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$AU$4.80 (Android); AU$5.49 (iOS)

(Credit: Cloud Macaca)

Magnetized

Trailer

Magnetized has been around for a while on Kongregate, and now it's available on mobile for those who just can't stop playing. It looks simple: you have to navigate a small square along a track. However, there are no navigation controls; to get around corners, you have to hold the screen to activate coloured squares that will pull your square in the right trajectory. Blue squares are magnets; pink squares are vacuums; and yellow squares are teleporters. It gets very tricky very fast.

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$2.27 (Android); AU$1.99 (iOS)

(Credit: Hello Games)

Joe Danger Infinity

Trailer

Stunt motorcycle game Joe Danger is back — with an itty-bitty, teeny-tiny Joe! It has over 100 levels, more than 20 new vehicles and 25 new characters for you to perform as many tricks and combos as you can, going up against traps and defeating level bosses. Will Joe ever return to his proper size? Do you even want him to?

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$0.99

(Credit: Atypical Games)

Battle Supremacy

Trailer

Battle Supremacy calls itself "the ultimate WWII tank combat game" and, coming from the team behind Sky Gamblers, we're inclined to think it might be onto something. It has a huge number of maps and tanks, and it genuinely feels epic. The tanks crawl majestically over the landscape, but, because they're so big, slow and cumbersome, you have to take the time to plan your strategy carefully to take out your foes, using a range of weapons. Controls are a little fiddly, but it looks so amazing that, if tanks are your jazz, the game is well worth your time.

Platform: iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$5.49

(Credit: Codestalkers)

Rogue: Beyond the Shadows

Trailer

What is this, isometric dungeon crawler month? Whatever it is, this free title exclusive to Android is pretty hard to say no to. The game isn't all about sneaking — there's plenty of melee combat to sate your bloodlust — and you can even build and submit your own content to be included in the game.

Platform: Android
Price: Free

(Credit: Glitch Games)

Ferris Mueller's Day Off

Trailer

Ferris Mueller's Day Off fulfils this month's point-and-click requirement. The art style of this game won't be for everyone; given that it's from the creators of Forever Lost, though, we know it's a deliberate choice. If you do like it (we do), or you can get past it, there's a wickedly funny game to be had here. Mule Ferris has gone AWOL; as head teacher and owner of Ferris, you have to track him down and bring him back. See how many references to 80s movies you can find!

Platform: Android; iPhone and iPad
Price: AU$2.85 (Android); AU$1.99 (iOS)

 

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