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Home / Features / The 45 best free Android games for your phone or tablet

The 45 best free Android games for your phone or tablet

Fun doesn’t have to require funding. Got an Android phone or tablet? Then download these games – now!

Best free android games 2020 intro graphic

There are many fantastic games available for Android that cost nothing. Whether ad-supported or based on a ‘freemium’ model, these titles are free – and guaranteed to make your day a little less painful. Looking for a new phone? Check out our guide to the best mid-range phones.

To help you find just the sort of thing you’re after, we’ve grouped the games into sections, so you can quickly grab the best platform games, endless runners, arcade games, shooters, puzzlers, strategy games, adventures, racers and sports titles.

There are enough free games here to keep you busy for months, and if you can’t find something you like in all that lot, then perhaps it’s time to take up a new hobby, like macrame or birdwatching.

The best new free Android game

Get an instant fix with the free Android games tickling our fancy right now.

Please, Touch the Artwork 2

Fed up with tiresome types banging on that games can’t be art? Show them this oddball puzzler and point out it is literal art. At least in the sense its various puzzles are based around the work of Belgian modern artist James Ensor.

If all that sounds a bit highbrow, don’t worry. Even if art isn’t your thing, this is a superb lightweight point-and-tapper, where the artwork comes alive in Gilliamesque fashion as you roam miniature painterly scenes to find objects for various subjects. Only when they’re sated to further paintings open up to your prodding digits.

It’s cheaper than a trip to your local gallery and arguably more fun. There aren’t even any ads. If you think it’s a pretty picture, also check out the equally compelling Mondrian-inspired predecessor.

Download Please, Touch The Artwork 2

The best free Android platform games

Super Cat Tales: PAWS

This follow-up to our previous favourite Android platforming freebie somehow manages to improve on its predecessor. You get that whiff of classic platforming, directing a band of moggies through brightly coloured settings. They leap about, grab bling, avoid nasty enemies, and occasionally slide down walls with that look cats get on biting off more than they can chew.

The controls are superb – two thumbs are all you need to run (double tap), jump (leap from a platform), and wall jump (tap in the opposite direction). It’s so good, you’ll want all virtual D-pads summarily banned. But the game itself is even better, with smartly designed levels and surprising moments aplenty. There’s even a lovely downtime game where the feline heroes get to fish for their dinner – something your own cats will look enviously upon.

Download Super Cat Tales: PAWS


Before all games had to be 3D by law, the 2D adventure-platformer reigned supreme. You’d scoot about a vibrant world with a suspicious number of floating platforms, nab bling, and occasionally kick the living daylights out of monsters daft enough to get in your way.

On touchscreens, these games are usually a bit rubbish, due to iffy design and even worse controls, but Swordigo bucks the trend. You get a huge magical realm of monsters to fight, treasures to find, and towns to explore. Any whiff of nostalgia is rapidly expunged as you become engrossed in the plot, give giant spiders a serious kicking, and do your best Harry Potter impersonation with the aid of enemy-troubling spells.

Download Swordigo

Dadish 3

Hey, kids! Don’t hop on any old bus under the promise of a ‘field trip’ – especially if you’re a radish and the person running said trip has a thing for radish soup. That’s the set up for this tasty platform game that has the surprisingly serene Dadish bounce through dozens of levels, to rescue his kids.

You won’t be serene, mind, because Dadish 3 is ferocious. It’s a platform game that punishes the slightest error, and where restart points are rare. Stick with it, though, and you’ll revel in its tight level design, oddball sense of humour, and sewer dolphins. Yes, you read that right.

Download Dadish 3

Bean Dreams

This deceptively simple platform game strips the genre right back, placing a firm emphasis on learning levels, timing, and exploration. Your jumping bean never stops bouncing, and you simply guide it left or right. The usual platform-game tropes are evident: monsters to jump on; fruit and gems to gather.

But Bean Dreams cleverly adds replay value by way of missions that can’t all be completed on a single run: sticking to a bounce count; finding hidden pet axolotls; and collecting all the fruit. What first seems simple and reductive is really a big challenge, but the straightforward controls are perfect for touchscreens, rather than you spending most of your time battling a hideous virtual D-pad.

Download Bean Dreams

Sad But Ded

Like many platformers, Sad But Ded features a leapy protagonist and a goal. But this game’s on-screen controls are a row of single-use buttons to direct an auto-running protagonist. Time things right and Ded reaches the flag; get things wrong and he dies. No wonder he spends the entire game screaming.

This would all be tricky enough, but the game’s creator has a devious streak. Just as you’re getting to grips with everything, the game’s mechanics will change. (Keep a close eye on level titles – they are more important than you’ll first realise.)

The entire thing’s very silly but also a stiff challenge – especially if you avoid the easy mode with its endless lives and instead take on the hardcore level or speedrun mode.

Download Sad But Ded

Bit of a banger: It’s full of Sparks

Like Canabalt with explosions, It’s full of Sparks has you tap the screen to direct a jumping firecracker to a body of water that’ll stop it going boom. Before long, things get tougher, and you’ll end up performing deranged finger gymnastics as your panicking firework darts about, desperate to survive.

The best free Android endless runners

Alto’s Odyssey

In Alto’s Adventure, the titular hero was supposed to be capturing escaped llamas. But mostly he performed show-off stunts on snowy slopes, and tried to stay ahead of spoilsport elders with sticks, angry at Alto’s maverick nature and distaste at sitting in a pen full of llama poop.

This sequel retains the original’s elegance and gorgeous aesthetics. Again, one thumb controls fling Alto into the air and trigger tricks. But now Alto’s blazing through a vast desert, peppered with colossal dunes and death-defying valleys.

It at first feels like a reskin, but Odyssey soon opens up, offering new ideas like bouncing off of hot-air balloons and wall-riding along cliffs. And should you want a more meditative affair, there’s a Zen mode, which pits you against an endless landscape, Alto picking himself up whenever he comes a cropper.

Download Alto’s Odyssey

Saily Seas

Even if you have your sea legs, you might think twice about mimicking the hero of this splashy tale of survival. Armed with what appears to be a sheet nailed to a twig rammed into a log, the hardy protagonist braves the high seas – and even higher waves.

By way of tapping, pressing, and swiping, you try to avoid drowning or getting clonked by vicious sea life, all the while trying to outpace a massive, hungry whale determined to make you a lunchtime snack.

Still, if the tension ramps up a bit too much, you can at least gawp at the lovely visuals, shortly before your sailor meets their untimely demise.

Download Saily Seas

Will Hero

Hero of the hour Will is a bit of a square – but so is everyone else in this amusingly over the top mash-up of platforming, endless running, and wanton violence.

You use a single thumb to have Will bounce forwards, the aim being to land on enemy heads, avoid pits, and not get sliced in half by surprisingly deadly windmills. But grab a chest and you’re suddenly heavily armed, unleashing everything from missiles to giant axes.

The gameplay’s fast, furious and demented, but it doesn’t wear thin – this hero’s got plenty of missions to complete, and helmets to find, each of which bestows special powers.

Download Will Hero

The best free Android arcade games

Super Fowlst 2

It’s not easy being a chicken tasked with saving the world from a demon invasion –especially when your only weapon is a rotund rear. But that’s how this multi-screen flapper begins, with you arcing awkwardly across the screen, smacking into enemies to knock them flying.

As you progress, it doesn’t get any less weird. You’ll face bosses like a giant avocado that hurls its stone at you, and occasionally get to stomp about in a chicken mech suit. Grab enough coins and you’ll also be able to start games by pooping homing missiles out of your bum.

Download Super Fowlst 2

Knight Brawl

If you thought the battle with the Black Knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail was silly, it’s got nothing on Knight Brawl. This absurdist hack ’em up finds your sword-wielding protagonist whirling arms and bouncing about as if on a trampoline.

Wrestle with the controls and you’ll eventually elevate yourself to stabby mastery in a range of free-for-all scraps and one-on-one bouts. And when you hanker for bling rather than glory, you can partake in some pilfering and murdering, leaping about castles and unsportingly slicing unsuspecting guards up from behind.

It’s entertainingly bonkers, even if the sound is sadly limited to clangs and grunts, rather than an overly confident foe yelling “had worse” and yelling that they’ll “bite your legs off” when relieved of their own.

Download Knight Brawl

Street fighter: Beat Street

Successfully punching old into new Beat Street echoes scrolling retro fare like Streets of Rage and Double Dragon, but you duff up enemies using only a single digit. And, yes, you can still unsportingly smash their evil faces in with a baseball bat – but that’s OK, because you’re the hero.


Pinball on smartphones always feels cramped, like someone tried to squeeze a house into a shoebox. PinOut! is different. Its single massive table stretches far into the distance, challenging you with belting a ball along against the clock.

The table’s divided into short sections, which you get past by successfully hitting ramps. If the ball drops between the flippers, you don’t lose lives, but time.

The entire game’s drenched in neon and synth-pop, like you’ve been hurled into a fusion of Tron, pinball and a 1980s disco. But it works brilliantly even on the smallest screen, ramping up the tension as the clock ticks down and your sausage fingers prevent you from reaching the bonuses that temporarily reset the timer.

Download PinOut!

Flip out: Williams Pinball

Want conventional ball-spanging? Then get Williams Pinball, which painstakingly recreates a bunch of classic tables. There’s grind to unlock them all – although ‘grind’ in this case is ‘playing great pinball’. Pick wisely (Attack from Mars/Medieval Madness/The Getaway) for your free table, though, because you’ll play it a lot.


Multi-device party games are usually a bit glib, but Spaceteam bucks the trend with a quirky and oddball take on co-op gameplay. Between two and four players are part of the ‘Spaceteam’ (red jerseys are optional), and must give orders, to try and stop your ship exploding, a ship — naturally — that happens to be attempting to outrun an exploding star.

It’s a very silly game as you all bark out orders, and get frustrated when no-one’s listening, mostly because it turns out said orders tend to refer to something on someone else’s screen. Still, you can’t help but love anything on Google Play that has ‘Beveled Nanobuzzers’ as an item in its feature list.

Download Spaceteam

The best free shooting games on Android

Shadowgun Legends

It’s the future, and humanity’s at war with deadly alien foes. Naturally, the best way to turn the tide of war is to send in a bunch of armoured nutcases with massive guns – and then turn their escapades into some kind of absurdist and extremely violent reality TV show.

That’s Shadowgun Legends in a nutshell: a mobile FPS with the underlying aim of becoming a legendary warrior, to the point your adoring fans build a statue of you in the game’s main hub. Before then, there’s loads of shooty action to immerse yourself in – 200 missions, set across four worlds. Just remember to smile for the cameras.

Download Shadowgun Legends

Time Locker

If you thought vertical shooters would be a mite easier if you could freeze the action, Time Locker suggests otherwise. In this dazzling low-poly world of heavily armed critters, everything moves only when you do – bar a relentlessly encroaching all-devouring darkness.

This is initially disorienting, but the action nonetheless feels fresh from the off. And Time Locker really grabs hold as you learn to play with time, slowing down to weave between swarms of enemies, carefully manoeuvring to pick off gun emplacements, and risking blazing ahead when bosses and the deadly abyss are in hot pursuit.

Download Time Locker

PewPew Live

Ah, to return to those halcyon days where you’d sit in front of a CRT screen, neon visuals searing your retinas as you zoomed around a tiny arena, blasting everything in sight. But wait! You can do all that right now with PewPew Live.

OK, so you won’t get the CRT bit (unless you do something very weird with your Android blower, cables and a very old telly), but this title otherwise brings back the joy of classic twin-stick shooty larks like Robotron: 2084. And it also moves beyond mere blasting, with alternate modes that have you dodge rather than shoot, or deal with pesky space rocks keen to smash you into next week.

For a fiver, we’d recommend it. For free, you’d be pewty daft to miss it.

Download PewPew Live

Shooty Quest

If you’re a nefarious evil type, you should know better than to blow up someone’s house when they’re called The Deadly Arrow. And most definitely don’t steal their cat and leave a calling card. Idiots. Still, as Mr Arrow, you get to take your revenge by – as the game’s name suggests – getting all shooty.

Levels play out with you standing at the screen’s centre while enemies dart in from the edges. Tap to fire off arrows. Easy. Except it isn’t, because before long each enemy can only be defeated with a specific weapon. This transforms Shooty Quest from mindless blaster to deranged and frenetic juggling act.

Download Shooty Quest

Missile Command: Recharged

The original Missile Command coin-op had you fend off increasingly intense nuclear missile attacks. You’d frantically spin the trackball and fire off your own strikes, before eventually succumbing to your inevitable demise. To hammer home the futile nature of nuclear conflict, the game eschewed the traditional ‘game over’ message for the more chilling ‘the end’.

This touchscreen effort doesn’t have a trackball and nor can you manage which silos to shoot from. Missile launches are automated when you tap the display to target the latest barrage from an endless onslaught of neon destruction. Those changes might make veterans grumble, but they work – and you can always fire up an emulator on Android if you want the original. Instead, Recharged rethinks a classic and is a rare example of a redesign that’s a blast to play.

Get Missile Comand: Recharged

The best free Android puzzle, match and word games


It might look like the ancient Columns, but Otteretto is a much more thinky puzzler based around blocks lurking in a well. Instead of directing shapes to match blocks of three or more, squares are removed by dragging out palindromic sequences – that is, ones that are the same in both directions.

The longer the sequence, the more points you get – and you’ll need them to beat the points target that ramps up after every level. Still, that’ll just make you look all the more carefully at the squares, until spotting a ridiculously labyrinthine sequence and feeling like a champ.

If all that isn’t enough, chuck three quid the creator’s way and you unlock additional modes, including one that has you peruse a set of squares to find a single, massive palindrome.

Download Otteretto


Having reimagined chessword searchespoolsolitaire and anagrams, Zach Gage now turns his attention to crosswords. And like his other games, Knotwords is an exercise in subversion, playing with a familiar form, yet leaving you with something unique.

Instead of solving clues, you start with an empty crossword comprising Tetris-like shapes that have letters inside. You arrange those letters in spots that allow a completed crossword to be made. With smaller efforts, that’s simple enough; with the larger puzzles, you’ll be begging for those missing cryptic clues – but won’t get any.

For free, there’s a daily puzzle – and a static set for each month. If you want more, a one-off IAP unlocks the archive.

Get Knotwords

Logica Emotica

By law, all visual communication will be emoji by 2027. This game’s getting a head start, then, with 50 single-screen puzzles that have you shunt emoji about in what comes across like Soko-Ban designed by a Snapchat-obsessed teen. Elsewhere, Snake is the inspiration, with your emoji leaving trails you cannot cross.

What elevates the game is the mind of its creator, known for devious minimalist puzzlers. This one doesn’t smash your brains out in the same manner as his titles named after colours, but that’s no bad thing; and the way Logica constantly shakes things up, combined with its breezy vibe, makes for another winner.

Download Logica Emotica

Dungeons of Dreadrock

You might need to stifle a yawn as Dreadrock kicks off, with its ‘worthy’ intro and conventional gameplay. Your brother’s been kidnapped and you need to work through a bunch of blocky dungeons set out in a grid pattern.

But that intro has the odd humorous moment that makes you wonder if this will be something more – and you’ll know it really much is when you’re a few levels in. Bar the self-aware humour, what grabs hold are the game’s relentlessly clever, frequently inventive puzzles and a smattering of smart storytelling.

Rarely does a game that starts out feeling so familiar transform into a mobile classic, but if you’ve any interest in puzzles peppered with the odd adrenaline-fuelled real-time sequence, Dreadrock is a must.

Get Dungeons of Dreadrock

Linia super

Many moons ago, we reviewed the original Linia, which we described as “a bit like Fruit Ninja, as reimagined by a lover of precision geometry”. The game had you swipe through moving shapes to match a pattern of coloured dots. Careful timing and precision were the difference between success and ego-smashing abject failure.

This follow-up looks very smart indeed, with gorgeous visuals informed by filters found in Stuff favourite GeometriCam. And, like the original Linia, it remains deeply rewarding when you nail a particularly tricky challenge by way of split-second ‘finger sword’ skills.

Download Linia super

Sliding Seas

There’s a disconnect at the heart of Sliding Seas, given that it’s a match game featuring lots of cute folks that live on a glorious sunny island. And that’s because before they make it there, you must first fish them out of the sea. Fail and they drown.

The mechanics are reminiscent of Triple Town, with matches levelling up tiles until they transform from water to land, and then to shelter. Now and again, you face alternate challenges, fending off pirates and getting stranded people to a rescue boat. It’s great. But ignore the (horrible) IAPs and bonus power-ups – you won’t need them in this little slice of puzzling paradise.

Download Sliding Seas

Impossible Isles

On an idyllic isle, ducks and rabbits are at war. Elsewhere, a troll lurks, ready to smash everything nearby to smithereens. Your aim is to dish out cards representing these creatures, placing them on grid squares in a manner that keeps everyone relatively happy.

The thing is, even landscape elements have preferences: mountains want to be next to other mountains, but hate the sea. Villages must be adjacent to residents. And there are wildcards to plop down in appropriate spots and bonus secrets to unearth.

This is perfect thinky fare. And with a new pack of cards/draw order being provided daily, you’ll be happily stranded for many hours on these impossible isles.

Download Impossible Isles

Kitty Q

If you thought Schrödinger’s Cat was a thought experiment, you’re in for a surprise in Kitty Q. A box rocks up on your doorstep with a half-dead/half-living moggie. She’s been sent by the great-granddaughter of the world-famous physicist, who wants you to help solve the cat’s quantum superposition problem.

This involves poking about a room full of strange objects, solving science-y challenges, and tickling the weird-looking cat to have it regurgitate objects you need. Lovely. It’s short but sweet, although any smugness you might feel about blazing through its puzzles evaporates when you dig into the actual science within the built-in ‘Kittypedia’ and realise you know barely more about this subject than the average kitty.

Download Kitty Q

Box clever: Samsara Room

Otherworldliness and claustrophobia collide in Samsara Room, which combines point-and-click adventuring and psychological horror. Your tiny room is sealed and a mirror shows you’ve become a shadow-like wraith. You’ve had better days. Find a way out and you return to the room, reimagined in increasingly surreal, broken fashion. Creepy.

The best free Android strategy and adventure games

Marvel Snap

This card game’s for folks who lack the time, patience or inclination for Magic: The Gathering or HearthstoneMarvel Snap bouts last mere minutes as you plonk down cards across six rounds, trying to secure two out of three locations.

You win through placing more power units than your opponent on a given location. But cards and locations alike have abilities that can instantly change everything. You’ll wish you could ‘Thanos snap’ your opponent into oblivion when they pull out a game-upending move on round six.

Still, that’ll just make you want to further refine your decks. You’ll dive deep into Marvel’s comic book roster, mull that the collectables aspect is sound (shiny 3D cards!), and wonder if it’s the smartest move to play a game with a compelling gameplay loop and a compulsive card collection mechanic.

Download Marvel Snap

The Battle of Polytopia

Essentially a miniature Civilization, Polytopia has you command a tiny tribe, aiming to discover new technologies, expand your empire, and duff up anyone who gets in your way.

The visuals are bright, the little isometric worlds are suitably claustrophobic, and the simplifications over Civ are smart, keeping things fluid without robbing Polytopia of strategy and depth.

One of the best bits: although there is a standard ‘kill everyone else’ mode, Polytopia also offers a ‘be the best within just 30 moves’ option. On the easiest settings, this is a cinch – but crank up the difficulty level and such limitations prove to be a stern challenge.

The Battle for Polytopia

Cards of Terra

When your spacecraft crashes into an alien world packed with hostile critters, what do you do? If you’re the magical heroine of Cards of Terra, have said critters take chunks out of each other, while your crew rebuilds to get you home.

This all plays out as a game of cards – part Magic: The Gathering, part solitaire. You drag cards atop other cards to wipe out enemies and free your crew. What sets Cards of Terra apart are its generosity (free with few ads), range of game modes, and how alive everything feels.

It’s quite something the first time a wolf calls its kin, an archer takes a pot-shot at the start of a move, or a vicious creature lunges for whatever card happens to be closest.

Download Cards of Terra

Bling it to me: Look, Your Loot!

RPG on a card grid Look, Your Loot! finds a rodent hero stabbing enemies, grabbing bling and making for an exit. The snag: their life-force depletes during every battle. Cue: careful route planning, special object use, and getting beaten to a pulp during boss battles – not least when one inconveniently turns everything nearby into a psychotic pumpkin.


The snag with bullet-hell shooters is in having to keep track of dozens of objects at once. Miss one and you’re dead. The end. Salvagette tries something different, restricting its set-up to a single screen, placing all movement on a grid, and having everything take place in turn-based fashion.

It’s a strategy game, then, but one with elements of Robotron: 2084 and Japanese bullet-hell shooters, as you take stock of every ship and projectile, and then make your move. You don’t have guns either, so must ran your opponents into oblivion, carefully timing attacks to avoid their firepower.

Mobile’s long been an excellent place for experimentation, and Salvagette is a superb genre mash-up, capturing the intensity of a modern shooter and combining it with a layer of thinky tactics.

Download Salvagette

King Crusher

It turns out King Tease should have a swift name change to King Tyrant. You see, he woke up this morning and decided only he should be king. It’s now your sworn duty to roam about the land, wiping out every other monarch.

What follows is a mash-up of RPG-lite and real-time strategy in a shoebox. You get a gang together, and head off on missions. Battles take place on tiny grids. You swipe tiny fighters about to avoid enemy fire, and tap adversaries to give them a good kicking.

Chunky retro graphics, breezy gameplay, and bite-sized adventures ensure this is a top-quality mix of strategy and arcade fare to crown your device.

Download King Crusher

The best free Android racing games

Asphalt 9: Airborne

A racing gaming without any steering might seem bonkers, but Asphalt long ago left behind convention – and appearing to care a jot about trifling things like realism and physics. Now, the game’s effectively on rails, with you selecting from a handful of routes to barrel along at any given time.

It should be awful. It isn’t. Instead, this high-octane arcade effort finds you drifting around bends, hitting ramps, and soaring through the air, trying to figure out the precise choreography to nail the current race and unlock the next. But if that makes you as grumpy as the average Raikkonen, traditional controls still exist.

Download Asphalt 9: Legends

Airborne Motocross Bike Racing

Side-on motocross games typically dump you on a bike, give you an accelerator and a brake, and have you balance your racer by rotating them anti-clockwise and clockwise. A quick glance at Airborne would suggest much the same’s going on here – but it really isn’t.

The rotation mechanic remains, but directional controls instead flip your bike around, to head in the opposite direction when tackling the maze-like courses. You also end up juggling a hang glider and boosts, along with fending off other riders and blowing up bits of scenery with a rocket launcher.

It’s tough – not least if you take on challenges that range from completing the course when cat-sized or belting beach balls to the chequered flag. But stick with it and you’ll discover hours of varied and exciting racing larks.

Get Airborne Motocross Bike Racing

Beach Buggy Racing 2

You might narrow your eyes at the prospect of a kart racer that doesn’t have Mario in the title – and especially when its characters look so dull and generic. But Beach Buggy Racing 2 nails everything else.

The action is fast and furious as you belt around circuits peppered with weapons boxes and shortcuts. As you gain experience, you unlock new tracks and weapons. Want to bounce on Mars or dodge a dragon’s fiery breath? Done. Fancy turning your rivals into massive hamster balls? Go for it.

The lack of leagues is a pity, and unlocking new drivers is mercilessly tough. But otherwise, this is a fabulous kart racer – easily the best you’ll find on Android.

Download Beach Buggy Racing 2

Data Wing

Calling Data Wing a racing game almost seems reductive once you’ve played it, but the basis of the game is speeding around circuits in a tiny triangular craft. It feels like Asteroids meets top-down racing as you battle inertia, scraping the edge of circuits for boost.

But there’s far more to Data Wing than time trials and multi-ship races: some levels head into puzzle-oriented adventure territory, with you fighting gravity and hunting down keys. And throughout, a dual-narrative plays out, telling the story of the mobile OS you’re a part of, and the real-life trials troubling your owner.

It’s all great stuff we’d recommend for a fiver. For free, it’s a bafflingly generous bargain.

Download Data Wing

Disc Drivin’ 2

If you’d have told us a while back that one of the finest racers on mobile would be a turn-based online multiplayer shove ha’penny, we’d have given you a funny look – and then backed away slowly. But that’s more or less Disc Drivin’ 2, which adds a smattering of MarioKart by way of power-ups and twisty circuits.

Surprisingly, the game’s turn-based approach doesn’t rob the racing of excitement and tension. That’s because every flick counts – mess up by hitting a turn wrong or missing a vital booster pad, and that’s the difference between the chequered flag or just being a flicky also-ran.

Download Disc Drivin’ 2

Crazy Taxi

If you’ve ever sat in a taxi tootling along city streets, wishing it’d just unleash and barge its way along, Crazy Taxi will be Android-based catharsis.

A straight port of the Dreamcast/arcade original, its time-attack racing has you pick up passengers and ferry them to their destinations. All the while, your time reserves are depleted, forcing you to take shortcuts – such as hurling your taxi from the third storey of a car park, or using other traffic as bumpers to ‘pinball’ yourself along a freeway.

The game has a dubious understanding of road safety and physics alike, then, and after almost 20 years it looks a bit rough. But it’s still as much of a blast as it was when first released.

Download Crazy Taxi Classic

The best free Android sports games

Rocket League Sideswipe

The original Rocket League asks the question: what about soccer, but with rocket-powered cars? Rocket League Sideswipe then asks: and how about a version for mobile? To which the answer would usually be: sure, but it’ll be a horribly cut down and hideous IAP-infested mess. Turns out just two of those words are correct.

The game is cut down, since it’s played side-on. But the pace and fun of the original game remain, with vehicles jetting about and smacking around an oversized ball. At the time of writing, there’s no hideous IAP either, even if the underlying mechanics are there. Here’s hoping that remains, because right now Rocket League Sideswipe is a mobile gem.

Download Rocket League Sideswipe

Touchgrind Scooter

The Touchgrind series has long carved itself out a niche on mobile, giving your digits a direct way to perform extreme sports. In Touchgrind Skate, two fingers become legs that flip a skateboard around; here, you’re instead on two wheels, bombing along on a scooter at speeds that would have any onlooker making loud gulping noises.

To say the game eases you in gently would be a lie. Like its predecessors, Touchgrind Scooter demands mastery. Initially, you’ll crash often and be ‘rewarded’ with terrible scores. But commit a course to memory and learn to pull off a string of death-defying stunts and you’ll feel like a Scooting god. Just probably don’t then try somersaulting off a building in the real world – that won’t end well.

Get Touchgrind Scooter

Super Stickman Golf 2

Super Stickman Golf 2’s ancestor is the same Apple II Artillery game Angry Birds has at its core, but Noodlecake’s title is a lot more fun than catapulting birds around.

It’s a larger-than-life side-on mini-golf extravaganza, with you thwacking balls about giant forests, moon bases, and metal-clad courses with a suspiciously high deadly saw-blade and laser count. The single-player game’s fun, but SSMG 2 really comes into its own in multiplayer, whether you’re taking the more sedate turn-by-turn route or ball-smacking at speed in the frenetic race mode.

Download Super Stickman Golf 2

Rowdy City Wrestling

Colin Lane has form in mobile wrestling, with the absurdist Wrassling and equally demented Rowdy Wrestling (see boxout). This sequel to the latter game dials down the silliness a notch but ramps up the ambition, having you work your way up from nobody to world champ.

Along the way, you’ll make a few bucks lugging chairs about, partake in dodgy dockside bouts, and immerse yourself in full-on multiplayer brawls. The simple controls might make veteran brawler fans grumble – there are no complex combos; but this is a fun slice of mobile wrestling to dip into at any time, with fab retro visuals from Brad Erkkila and the kind of longevity that amounts to a piledriver to the face for its rivals.

Download Rowdy City Wrestling


New Star Soccer

This one reimagines the beautiful game in a broadly abstract and not entirely realistic fashion that owes a lot to ancient management games for the C64 and ZX Spectrum. (Some of us at Stuff are old enough to remember the original Football Manager!) So there’s no FIFA-style TV-like action here; instead, you get a selection of mini-games, giving you chances to score and pass during matches and increase your skills during training.

The remainder of the game is about balancing life, keeping your boss, team and partner happy, while occasionally sneaking out to the casino and buying the odd fighter jet. Hey, we did say ‘not entirely realistic’ – although given modern soccer wages, it’s only a matter of time before a striker’s blazing around in an F–35.

Download New Star Soccer

Profile image of Craig Grannell Craig Grannell Contributor


I’m a regular contributor to Stuff magazine and Stuff.tv, covering apps, games, Apple kit, Android, Lego, retro gaming and other interesting oddities. I also pen opinion pieces when the editor lets me, getting all serious about accessibility and predicting when sentient AI smart cookware will take over the world, in a terrifying mix of Bake Off and Terminator.

Areas of expertise

Mobile apps and games, Macs, iOS and tvOS devices, Android, retro games, crowdfunding, design, how to fight off an enraged smart saucepan with a massive stick.

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