Gladiablots: AI Combat Arena, or the intoxicating organisational genius of Wilmot’s Warehouse these are 10 of the best mobile games that emerged this year.
It’s no secret that 2020 hasn’t been the most joyous or fulfilling year in recent memory, which is why it’s heartening that the games industry has been able to offer so many genuinely great ways of diverting you from that reality.
Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales
Blending The Witcher’s seminal deck builder, Gwent, with a role-playing game all of its own, Thronebreaker uses card battles as stand-ins for physical ones. You’ll get occasional, conventional games of Gwent but the majority of battles reflect the special conditions your characters have just encountered in the world.
That introduces a new set of buffs or limitations for almost every game, a feature that keeps things fresh and forces you to rethink your tactics based on what’s in front of you rather than simply leaning on a few well-worn card combinations.
And all that tactical brilliance is underpinned by a story of moral ambivalence and intrigue that’s every bit The Witcher. It’s a cracking game to have on your phone.
Encouraging strategic thinking and freeform creativity, your job in Wilmot’s Warehouse is to organise batches of stock as they come into your storage area. How you categorise items is essential as your collection of random bric-a-brac gets larger and more diverse. The reason it’s important is that as well as stowing items, you’ll also be called upon to find and deliver them to the service hatch, all against a time limit.
Although running a virtual Argos branch may not on the face of it sound much like a game, Wilmot’s Warehouse is enthrallingly addictive, providing a continual test of organisational skills and memory that gradually escalates in complexity. Score: 9/10
iOS & Android, £3.99 Dropping you straight into the action, Unmemory’s captivating blend of puzzles and mystery uses every aspect of your phone, from touch to motion to sound and visuals, making it – ironically – a singularly memorable experience.
Interactive fiction immediately makes you think of choose your own adventure books, and while they have their place Unmemory stretches that genre in ingenious and surprising directions, using text, images, and other objects on the page to deliver puzzles that require logical deduction rather than trial and error. With superb sound design and problems that actually feel good to solve, like Simogo’s Device 6 this is a game that will rattle around your head long after you’ve finished playing it.
Score: 8/10 XCOM 2
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