Best mobile games of September 2015 (pictures)

Looking for a new game to play on your mobile device? Here's our pick of the best released in September 2015.

Michelle Starr
Michelle Starr is CNET's science editor, and she hopes to get you as enthralled with the wonders of the universe as she is. When she's not daydreaming about flying through space, she's daydreaming about bats.
Michelle Starr
1 of 17 Bossa Studios

I Am Bread

It's not easy being bread, as you're about to find out. In action adventure game I Am Bread by Bossa Studios (the developer behind the hilarious Surgeon Simulator), you have to walk a piece of bread from its current location to the toaster.

This is not as easy as it sounds. You can only flip the bread from the corners with which it contacts a flat surface, so if it's hanging over an edge or propped against something, those corners are out of action, which limits where you can move. Additionally, touching the floor for too long renders the bread inedible, which means level over, try again.

This hair-tearing bread action is great fun, but it's not just toasting for its own sake. The owner of the house in which the bread has its adventures, Mr Murton, begins to realise something is awry, and the game turns into a tense battle of wills between a cranky old man and bread that just wants to be toast when it grows up. Or does it..?


Platforms: iOS

Price: $4.99 | AU$6.49 | £3.99

2 of 17 Coffee Stain Studios

Goat Simulator MMO Simulator

Goat Simulator MMO Simulator is the best simulated MMORPG in which you control a simulated goat that you will ever play.

In it, you'll find the Goat Simulator you know and love, enhanced by MMO-style gameplay: classes, quests, and a lot of goats stuck in hedges. The game has level progression, and loot that you can add to your inventory, and a map to explore, but it's not about playing an MMORPG, it's about having the experience of an MMORPG. This includes bugs, player-killers, campers, and an eerily accurate simulated chat.

If you've never logged in to an MMORPG in your life, the jokes will probably go right over your head... but if you're a player of MMORPGs, the game is a work of hilarious genius.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $4.99 | AU$6.49 | £3.99 (Android); $4.99 | AU$6.49 | £3.99 (iOS)

3 of 17 Sarah Northway

Rebuild 3: Gangs of Deadville

Sarah Northway's Rebuild series of games take the town management sim genre and add a horrifying twist: the shambling undead. You not only have to manage people and resources, you have to keep the zombie hordes at bay.

The third iteration of the game comes with survivors equipped with skillsets, which you can level up by sending them on missions; a 35-node research tree so that you can learn new skills to keep your growing colony alive; randomised events to keep gameplay tense and interesting; a massive campaign story mode; and all the attention to detail that makes the game a fully fleshed out experience, such as back stories for all the survivors.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $4.99 | AU$6.11 | £3.99 (Android); $4.99 | AU$6.49 | £3.99 (iOS)

4 of 17 Daedelic Entertainment


Meeting this month's point-and-click requirement is Daedalic Entertainment's Deponia, the tale of loveable scallywag Rufus who wants to pack up and leave the eponymous Deponia, where everything is made of trash, for the fair horizons of the fabled Elysium. Until he meets the mysterious Goal, which throws everything into disarray.

With gorgeous visuals, full voice acting and a wicked sense of humour, Deponia is an excellent title, particularly for fans of the old LucasArts point-and-clicks.


Platforms: iOS

Price: $9.99 | AU$12.99 | £7.99

5 of 17 Lab Like

Magic Flute by Mozart

Magic Flute by Mozart is part puzzle game, part exploration of Mozart's 1791 opera The Magic Flute, as directed by Japanese theatre and kabuki director Amon Miyamoto in Linz, Austria in 2013.

As main characters Tamino and Papageno progresses through the story, you need to slide floor pieces around to create a clear path to the exit. Later in the game, enemies and breakable tiles complicate path creation.

Meanwhile, you get to learn more about The Magic Flute, listening to the gorgeous music, the tale told in the form of cutscenes. It's an ambitious attempt at combining the opera and a video game and by keeping it simple, it succeeds admirably.


Platforms: iOS

Price: $1.99 | AU$2.49 | £1.49

6 of 17 Simogo


I've grown to have a lot of faith in Simogo over the years, and anything the studio puts out is immediately on my "must play" list.

SPL-T looks to be no different. It's a game about splitting your screen up into smaller parts. Basically, you tap the screen to divide it up, placing horizontal and vertical splits alternately.

After a play or two, the complex countdown mechanic clicks into place, and you find yourself starting to experiment with strategies.

And, because it's a Simogo game... yes, there is more to it than that. Interacting with the device and the interface throws up some interesting Easter eggs.

I wrote more about SPL-T here.


Platforms: iOS

Price: $2.99 | AU$3.79 | £2.29

7 of 17 3 Minute Games

Lifeline 2

Interactive novel Lifeline 2 wasn't, to my dismay, a continuation of the previous game, but an entirely new story, an entirely new protagonist, and an entirely new genre. It's an urban fantasy starring Arika, communicating with you via what looks like a magic spellbook. Arika has lost her family, and is seeking revenge for her murdered parents and a way to rescue her brother, trapped in a nightmare dimension.

The story is still as compelling as Lifeline's. Arika is just as snappy as Taylor, the protagonist from the original game, although a lot more talkative. The game messages you at realistic intervals, letting the story unfold naturally over the course of a few days. The conceit worked well in the first Lifeline to build tension and a relationship with Taylor.

Lifeline 2 doesn't work quite as well. The game technology better fits a sci-fi setting than a fantasy one, and Arika's loquaciousness tends to bog the narrative down a little. But as we wait for more Taylor, which the game's developers have assured us is coming, it's something to tide us over.

You can read more about Lifeline 2 here.


Platforms: iOS

Price: $2.99 | AU$3.79 | £2.29

8 of 17 Frozen Gun Games

Freeze! 2 -- Brothers

It's nearly three years after the release of the original Freeze!, a gloomy monochromatic puzzle game in which you rotate a series of two-dimensional shapes to navigate an eyeball to an exit.

Freeze! 2 is, as you might have guessed, its sequel, in which our old hero's baby eyeball brother had gone on a search and rescue mission to bring him home from captivity. The game features several upgrades. The most obvious of these is some gorgeous new graphics, but as the game progresses, the two eyeballs will need to work together to escape 100 levels across four worlds. The game also adds liquid, which makes escape a little more complex, and new obstacles to overcome.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $1.99 | AU$2.99 | £1.39 (Android); $1.99 | AU$2.49 | £1.49 (iOS)

9 of 17 Jutiful


AZZL is quite literally a puzzle game. The screen is split into pieces, and you have to rearrange them to make a picture. Sounds easy, right? Not so fast! The scenes are animated, and you have to watch carefully how they move in order to figure out where they go, and how they are oriented.

Don't be fooled by its cutesy, colourful monsters (a similar aesthetic to Dumb Ways to Die). As the game progresses, putting the animated scenes together becomes increasingly difficult. It's a fabulously diabolical twist on the puzzle game.


Platforms: iOS

Price: $2.99 | AU$3.79 | £2.29

10 of 17 Laser Dog


Laser Dog specialises in twitchy arcade titles, and boy is HoPiKo twitchy. The controls are really simple, tap to jump, hold to aim, spring from safe point to safe point. Timing is everything. You can't wait too long to jump or you'll die. You can't jump aimlessly and hope for the best or you'll die.

Mastering the controls, then learning which elements of the 2D platform levels will kill you dead and avoiding them takes a lot of practice.

If you're looking for a game with which to zen out, this is not for you. If you have an obsessive addiction to mastering arcade games of extreme difficulty, you should grab HoPiKo right now.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $3.99 | AU$4.99 | £2.99 (Android); $3.99 | AU$4.99 | £2.99 (iOS)

11 of 17 Mobius Digital

Beacon 38

In Beacon 38, you're in charge of a mission to try and open a portal to the 38th dimension from the 37th dimension, in search of a new home. The fleet ships are too big to fit through the portal, so you fly a single scout ship inside, and end up in a crazy, alien place inhabited by enormous Lovecraftian horrors, navigating only by sonar (how that works in space is unknown, but let's just go with it). This allows you to map the strange territories you find yourself in, seeking out new portals to widen the opening in the 37th dimension to allow the fleet through.

Without weapons, alone in the dark, the game's mechanic is surprisingly gentle and exploratory, reminiscent of titles like Waking Mars. The stakes are high if your mission fails, and the lurkers in the dark add an element of tension.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $2.99 | AU$3.79 | £2.29 (Android); $2.99 | AU$3.79 | £2.29 (iOS)

12 of 17 Choice of Games

A Wise Use of Time

Interactive fiction is certainly becoming more prevalent in a mobile format, and one of the finest purveyors is Choice of Games (Yeti's Parole Officer is a particular favourite of mine). The latest edition to the Choice of Games Library is "A Wise Use of Time", in which you play a character with the power to freeze time.

You can choose the gender and sexual orientation of your protagonist, which allows you to have the romance options of your choice. Your hero can use their powers for good or ill, but their are complications: First, other time-freezers running around can interfere with your activities. Second, freezing time causes you physical and mental harm.

The range of directions you can take the story, and the different endings available, make the book deeply replayable, with a rollicking adventure penned by Zombie Exodus author Jim Dattilo.

Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $3.99 | AU$5.58 | £3.12 (Android); $2.99 | AU$3.99 | £2.49 (iOS)

13 of 17 Prettygreat

Land Sliders

Prettygreat is a new Aussie studio created by former Halfbrick devs (Jetpack Joyride, Fruit Ninja), which means we expect some... well, some pretty great things. The studio's first game, Land Sliders, lives up to that promise.

The action arcade game sees you exploring a 3D isometric series of levels, collecting items, avoiding enemies and hazards, and moving onto the next level. The difference is that you don't move your little dude around. You move them through the level by sliding it around under your little dude's feet. Each level is bite-sized, so it's perfect for casual play, and the land-sliding mechanic ends up being a really fun twist on typical collecting-stuff gameplay.


Platforms: iOS

Price: Free

14 of 17 One Man Band

The Sequence

Fans of SpaceChem will enjoy The Sequence, a game in which you need to build a sequence of actions to transfer a cell from one point to another in a grid. Modules that push and pull the cell around the grid need to be placed, and activated in sequential order to complete the goal. It's kind of like building a digital Rube Goldberg machine, getting more complex as the levels progress, teaching you slowly how to plan out solutions.

It's a simple, yet elegant test of your strategic skills.


Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: $1.00 | AU$1.35 | £0.77 (Android); $0.99 | AU$1.29 | £0.69 (iOS)

15 of 17 Christian Montoya

No More Kings

Developer Christian Montoya comes from OMGPOP, where he helped design and produce Draw Something. No More Kings is his first solo game, and it's slick, simple and refined. It's a single-player puzzle game that isn't chess, but is based on the rules of chess.

The aim in each level, as it is in chess, is to checkmate the king. A number of pieces are arrayed on the board, and as you capture enemy pieces, you turn into them, and can only move in that piece's patterns. For example, if you take a rook, for the next turn you are a rook, until you capture the next piece, only able to move orthogonally on the chessboard.

It probably won't make you a chess grand master, but as you progress through the levels and they grow ever more difficult, you will start to be able to solve chess problems a little more easily. It's a great way to stretch your mind and learn more about how to play.

Platforms: Android | iOS

Price: Free

16 of 17 MightyGames

Shooty Skies

Matt Hall and Andy Sum of Hipster Whale (Crossy Road), Ben Britten Smith of Tin Man Games (Gamebook Adventures) and Matt Dutton of Many Monkeys (Breath of Light) have teamed up for Shooty Skies.

Your little plane (or other unlockable character) flies along the bottom of the screen. Holding down on the screen fires limitlessly at the horde of foes that come at you from the top, while moving your finger allows you to move, dodging enemies and enemy fire alike. A particularly clever mechanic is the ability to charge your weapon by lifting your finger from the screen. If you're willing to risk being vulnerable for that amount of time, you can fire off a powerful shot.

It shares a lot of DNA in common with Crossy Road. Collectible coins allow you to save up to unlock randomised new characters to play as, delivered from a claw machine. When you die, you can share a snapshot of your score and your brilliant explodey demise. And, of course, there's that wonderfully colourful voxel art.

If you liked Crossy Road (and who didn't!) Shooty Skies will also occupy a special place in your casual gaming fix heart.


Platforms: iOS

Price: Free

17 of 17 Killhouse Games

Out last month for Android

Waiting for a particular game that got an iOS release a while ago?

Door Kickers ($4.99 | AU$6.51 | £3.99)

David ($1.99 | AU$2.82 | £1.56)

Microgue (Free)

Castaway Paradise (Free)

Cally's Caves 3 (Free)

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