The 40 best iPhone and iPad games right now

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Strategy and word games

The best strategy and word game for iPhone and iPad: Mini Metro

For anyone immersed in the daily hell of a commute involving an underground, the notion of designing such a system – and for that to begin as a chill-out session – might seem unlikely. But Mini Metro is captivating from the first train you unleash.

It builds slowly. You connect a few stations by drawing a line, and passengers are ferried about, alighting at the first station that matches their shape. All along, your ears are serenaded by a tinkly generative soundtrack formed by the actions taking place on-screen.

The calm doesn’t last. As time passes, new passengers and stations appear, ramping up the tension and forcing you to juggle scant resources. Eventually, you’ll be overwhelmed and your subway will close. Still, a new one’s only a tap away. Just don’t lose yourself for too many hours in this minimal interactive underground.

Download Mini Metro (£3.99)

Civilization VI

You don’t get ‘proper’ games on an iPad, apparently. Which probably comes as a shock to anyone who’s installed Civilization VI. They’re probably also a bit gobsmacked that this really is the full 4X (eXplore; eXpand; eXploit; eXterminate) PC game shoved into Apple’s tablet.

It works really nicely, too, with smartly designed controls, and the kind of depth that can feasibly have a single game last for days. (Which might be a concern to Civ obsessives, now it’s on a properly mobile device.)

There are snags – no online multiplayer, some slightly fuzzy graphics on iPad Pros, and that whopping price tag (although the game is very regularly discounted). Still, if you want ‘proper’ games, you’d best get used to paying for them.

Download Civilization VI (£54.99)

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