There are still places untouched by the enlightening hands of the internet. If you and your Android device end up in one of these dark places, you may feel cut-off from the rest of the world. Don't panic, the solution is simple – here are the best offline Android games, recently updated with atmospheric snowboarding title Alto's Adventure, and the king of open-world creation and exploration, Minecraft: Pocket Edition.
Jump to what you like
- Minecraft: Pocket Edition
- Alto’s Adventure
- Shadow Fight 2
- Earn 2 Die
- Angry Birds Star Wars 2
- Swamp Attack
- Geometry Dash Lite
- Baldur's Gate II Enhanced Edition
- You Must Build A Boat
- Cook, Serve, Delicious!
- Punch Quest
- Knights of Pen and Paper +1
- Sorcery! 2
- Shadowrun Returns
What is it?
Minecraft: Pocket Edition is part of one of the biggest selling video game franchises ever. The mobile version of the beloved title might not have everything that its desktop PC counterpart does, but after a number of years of frequent updates, it’s pretty darn close.
What Minecraft: Pocket Edition delivers is a huge open world sandbox for creation and/or survival. You can play it purely to craft impressive structures and mechanisms or you can take on survival mode where you must defend against enemy mobs through harsh nights, all the while discovering new items and creating stronger equipment.
Why is it great?
There are hundreds of weapons, items and potions, as you might expect, but it’s the simple act of placing blocks, one at a time, to create structures that has kept its audience captivated since its launch and what gives Minecraft its incredible replay value. Though there have been dozens of titles since which have tried to copy this craft and survive formula, and Minecraft certainly wasn’t the first to do it, none have managed to match the satisfaction of building like Minecraft.
Minecraft: Pocket Edition can be enjoyed offline for the $6.99 entry fee. You’ll need to be online if you want to play with friends but to play the main game alone, no internet connection is required. If you’re still unsure about Minecraft: Pocket Edition, there’s a 30-day free trial available so you can see what all the fuss is about.
|Size||Varies with device|
|Android requirement||Android 4.2 and above|
What is it?
Alto’s Adventure was only released for Android a few months back but it’s already made it into our best offline android games list, and it might even be the best game here. It’s compelling and gorgeous in equal measure. Alto’s Adventure is an auto-runner (or auto-boarder, perhaps) in which you must guide snowboarder Alto down a treacherous mountain.
The stages are procedurally generated, meaning every run is different, but you are tasked with achieving specific goals each time. The tension comes from trying to achieve these before crashing on your way down the slope. Like many auto-runner games, Alto’s Adventure makes use of a single action button with a tap on the screen to jump. The fundamental gameplay isn’t breaking new ground for these types of games: but the way Alto’s Adventure carries it off is what sets it apart.
Why is it great?
For starters, the art direction is exemplary. The Snowman team has managed to create stunning vistas with simple flat shapes and deft use of color and lighting. Transitions between cool evenings and warm sunrises, combined with weather effects and an elegant piano-based soundtrack deliver a delicious blend of audio-visual material: the subtle way these change keeps each ride interesting. And when having your view blocked by foreground objects holds charm, you must concede that the developers have crafted a fine title.
Essentially, Alto’s Adventure nails the ethereal tone it aims for, while making essentials of sliding down a mountain and completing challenges feel great. Grinding along a rope, with a windmill in the background, while a shooting star punctuates the night sky is a rare and memorable moment of beauty in mobile games. Alto’s Adventure can be played offline, though you must go online to spend the coins collected on upgrades, should you wish to. These can all still be accumulated and saved while you’re offline, however, and it does not affect the gameplay described above.
|Android requirement||Android 2.3 and above|
Life is cheap in BADLAND. You control portly and hopeless winged sacks that move up, move down, and generally go in the right direction. They band together in large numbers at times, but only because they are certain to soon die in equally large numbers. Under your guidance, these sorry creatures are squashed, blown away, compacted and trapped in a relentless survival-of-the-fittest struggle towards some unknown end.
Essentially a visually stunning, physics-based platformer, Badlands gets the formula spot on. Pickups play with the size, speed and stickiness of the winged hedgehogs and there are countless opportunities to sacrifice some of your cohort for the greater good, using them to lift a certain piece of the landscape to allow others safe passage or to gather a dead-end pickup to shrink the herd in preparation for a narrow gap.
As members of the gang come and go, often in horrendous ways and at breakneck speed, the survivors, glassy-eyed with indifferent determination, continue flapping, for there is little else to do.BADLAND
The medieval RTS games so popular on PC have failed to find a home on Android for the most part, but Townsmen offers perhaps the best way to get a fix away from your computer. Offering a complex economy that is pleasingly challenging to manage, along with a familiar visual aesthetic, Townsmen has plenty to keep you coming back.
The only downside is that the free version is littered with ads, but if you spend a few hours with Townsmen, likelihood is that you'll want to spend plenty more hours with it, so paying for the full version would be a few cents well spent.Townsmen
Shadow Fight 2 is a one-on-one, free-to-play fighting game. You take on a series of warriors in silhouetted battles, gaining new weapons and learning new moves as you progress.
The game plays at a slower pace than many fighting games; there is a delay between you inputting actions and them occurring on screen. This creates almost a Dark Souls-like combat feel, and it's one of the key strengths of Shadow Fight 2: it’s not just your reactions or technique that are important, success also depends on your choice of moves and timing.
The fights can become very tense, particularly when your health bar is dwindling away, and the feeling of landing a well-timed attack never gets old. What's more, the lifelike animations act as a tasty counterpoint to the comic book art style found in the menus.Shadow Fight 2
Earn to Die 2 is a blast. This side-scrolling driving adventure sees you race across an apocalyptic wasteland filled with zombies to reach an evacuation ship.
You receive cash-based awards based on how many zombies you run over, which helps you upgrade your busted-up vehicle. Before you know it, you'll be driving a beefed-up truck and firing roof-mounted weapons.
It's a simple formula but it's well delivered. There are 10 different vehicles to unlock and tons of upgrades to apply. It's an action-packed joyride.Earn to Die 2
We all know Angry Birds and many of us know Angry Birds Star Wars, but Angry Birds Star Wars 2 might be the finest version of the series yet.
Rovio has perfected its winning formula to make a fantastic looking and endlessly replayable Android title. Everything about Angry Birds Star Wars 2, from the art style, to the menus, to the character abilities and level design, adheres to a high level of quality.
Whether you love or hate Angry Birds, it’s hard to knock this title for how it achieves its aims. Aside from occasionally disruptive difficulty spikes, Angry Birds Star Wars 2 is a roaring success. If you want an easy, free, pick-up-and-play Android game that looks gorgeous, give this a look.Angry Birds Star Wars II
In Swamp Attack, you have to defend your cabin against an oncoming horde of swamp critters. It's a free tower defence-style game, and its cell shaded graphics are perfectly suited to the outrageous action that takes place. This is a really well-conceived title and well worth checking out.Swamp Attack
Geometry Dash Lite is a free-to-play endless runner game with a focus on rhythm. The graphics and gameplay are simple in nature, but the game is satisfying to play. It requires perfect timing but because the levels always play out in the same way, it never feels unfair – it's just a case of needing to learn the level. It's highly addictive and highly recommended.Geometry Dash Lite
This is one of the greatest RPG sagas ever to exist on the PC, and it's right at home on touchscreen devices. You create a band of heroes, escape from the clutches of the evil wizard Irenicus, then wander across a vast world in search of revenge and adventure. Baldur's Gate uses AD&D (Advanced Dungeons & Dragons) rules, so it's not for the faint-hearted, but it's the richest role-playing experience you can get on Android.Baldur's Gate II
You Must Build A Boat is the sequel to the fantastic 10000000. It it, you travel the world in your humble boat, building it up into a formidable vessel by fighting monsters, catching them in a Pokemon-esque fashion, seeking treasure, and recruiting new crew members.
It's a challenging and compelling game that defines the word 'unputdownable'. Adding to the endless appeal of the game are randomly generated dungeons and a unique combat system that relies on Candy Crush-like tile-sliding – it's an absolute must-play.
Cook, Serve, Delicious started its life on the PC, where it devoured gamers with its compelling fast-paced gameplay, catchy theme tune and charming visual style. In this game, you're a cook/restaurant owner in a high-rise building, making food and serving it to people.
It may sound mundane, but it's one of the most high-octane games around, as you'll often have to take several orders at once while also trying to clean the dishes or set mouse-traps. As you progress, you can buy new equipment, foodstuffs, and eventually get your restaurant to a five-star rating. It's fantastic for those 15-minute gaming sessions.Cook, Serve, Delicious!
This vibrant, chaotic game became an instant hit when it landed in the Play Store. Finally, an action platform game in which you didn't need to awkwardly hold down on the screen to move your character. Instead, you tap buttons to punch and jump while your character automatically runs across the screen.
Punch Quest's visual design is fantastic, recalling classic platformers such as Ghouls 'n Ghosts and Metal Slug. Customize your character, level up, and even ride a dinosaur in this psychedelic punch-out.Punch Quest
Limbo is a bleak 2D platform game, in which you a control a young boy who's entered a lonely, monochromatic world in search of his sister.
It's a classic PC indie game that's been ported with great care onto Android. Limbo's world is sad, eerie and beautiful, and you'll soon be too immersed in its enigmatic story to care about the fact that you don't have an internet connection.
Indie Game Festival award winner Knights of Pen and Paper is a pixellated role-playing game bearing heavy similarity to classic Dungeons and Dragons style dice games.
You control a group of young kids playing a dungeon crawling tabletop game, with each of their personalities mimicking one of a cast of traditional RPG characters. While the characters remain at the table in the foreground, the background changes as you journey through a fantasy land, fighting monsters, finding loot and levelling up.
It’s a pretty 'meta' idea – playing an RPG of people playing an RPG – and the +1 version has been updated to add even more content to an already brilliant game.Knights of Pen & Paper +1
Sorcery! 2 is a cross between a 'choose your own adventure' storybook, and a role-playing game. You play as a knight traversing the landscape where your progress is largely governed by your answers to various questions.
There is a lot of reading involved, but the turn-based combat system keeps things fun. The interface is lovely, as is the medieval art-style, and it features a clever save system that effectively rewinds time, letting you change your answers if you get yourself into trouble. Definitely worth a look.Sorcery! 2
A favorite among the Humble Bundle squad, Shadowrun Returns is another award-winning turn-based fantasy RPG. With a murky cyberpunk setting, great 3D graphics, and a huge array of weapons, spells and abilities, Shadowrun Returns is about as polished a gaming experience as you are likely to find on Android.
It’s a murder mystery set in a futuristic Seattle with incredible depth, including hacking mechanics, shooting, spell-casting and more. Shadowrun Returns is one of the best games currently on Android – offline or otherwise.Shadowrun Returns
Did we miss anything? Let us know your favorite offline Android games in the comments.
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