In 2012, Slide To Play reviewed over 600 iOS games, and gave over 130 of them our highest score, a Must Have 4/4. From those top-reviewed games, we picked just 50 that we thought offered the very best gaming value for your time and money. The following Top 50 represent our favorite interactive iOS experiences of the year, and all week, we’re going to be rolling them out ten at a time. Read on for picks #50-41 of our Best iOS Games of 2012.
#50: Mutant Mudds
iOS received a lot ports this year, but not all of them transitioned to the touchscreen with grace. Mutant Mudds, on the other hand, feels like a game that was made for touchscreen controls. And it’s a good thing, too, because this 2D platformer is tough as nails. You play as a bespectacled kid with a jetpack that lets you hover. You’ll hop from platform to platform, killing blob-shaped enemies, and trying with all your might to stay alive through the well-designed levels. Mutant Mudds deserves a spot in the library of any fan of retro-style platformers.
Our Bottom Line: Mutant Mudds is one of the very best platformers on the system.
#49: Final Fantasy Dimensions
Square Enix made a huge push on iOS this year, bringing new games to the App Store seemingly every other week. Final Fantasy Dimensions was one of the best. Made originally for feature phones in Japan, this RPG is a callback to the 16-bit era, giving fans of games like Final Fantasy IV a whole new adventure in a style they love. The full game doesn’t come cheap, but its scope is nothing less than epic, making this a smart buy for anyone who grew up in worlds with random battles.
Our Bottom Line: Final Fantasy Dimensions is a game that old-school Final Fantasy fans thought we’d never see again. We should all be jumping with joy that it’s here.
#48: The Room
You’re in a nondescript room, with an ornate wooden box placed in the center. You find a letter sitting on top of the box, saying that what’s in the box will change the world– if you can get to it. As you examine the box, you find small inconsistencies of design that turn out to be buttons or levers that open new drawers and compartments in the box. The Room is a deep, intricately-designed puzzle game that will constantly keep you guessing what might be inside the box.
Our Bottom Line: The Room is a beautiful, mysterious game that any puzzle fan should own.
#47: Azkend 2: The World Beneath
This Match-3 game, inspired by the Jules Verne story Journey to the Center of the Earth, is both tough to beat and beautiful to look at. Each level introduces new challenges, like zapping bugs before they reach the top of the screen, and also reveals gorgeous hand-drawn backgrounds that advance the story. Like an epic, interactive storybook, Azkend 2 is perfect for getting lost in another world for hours.
Our Bottom Line: Azkend 2 is a surprise on every level, combining puzzles and a great story for a memorable adventure.
#46: The World Ends With You: Solo Remix
The World Ends With You: Solo Remix is another port of a Square Enix RPG, but it originated on the Nintendo DS. We’re glad to see that nothing has been lost in the translation. This singular title takes place in modern Japan and stars an angsty teen with a cell phone. He’s been brought, against his will, into a game of life and death. You’ll meet lots of kooky characters along the way, and discover crazy depths in the fighting system. For RPG fans looking for something new, this is the game to get.
Our Bottom Line: The World Ends With You is a stellar RPG regardless of platform, and we’re glad it made its way to iOS.
#45: Organ Trail: Director’s Cut
This isn’t the Oregon Trail, where hopeful settlers cross the plains shooting buffalo and fording rivers. Organ Trail tells the tale of a band of post-apocalyptic survivors, driving through zombie-infested America trying to find a fabled uninfected zone on the West Coast. Many of the minigames from Oregon Trail, like hunting and crossing rivers, are parodied in Organ Trail as shooting zombies and plowing through herds of undead. It’s a bit bleak, but you might actually pick up a survival skill or two as you navigate this retro-style spoof.
Our Bottom Line: The Organ Trail is an education in survival that will take more than just a quick trigger finger.
#44: Pizza vs. Skeletons
Turns out Plants vs. Zombies isn’t the wackiest foodstuff vs. undead game on the App Store. That honor goes to Pizza vs. Skeletons, a goofy minigame collection where you play as a giant skeleton-squashing pizza pie. By tilting left and right, you can crush skeletons, rescue puppies, and engage in other weird one-off battles. You can even customize your pizza’s toppings and facial features, for a more personalized melee. The rivers will run red with marinara sauce!
Our Bottom Line: A weird, exciting, fun little dish of a game. You’ll be coming back for seconds sooner then you think.
#43: ORC: Vengeance
If you’re a fan of dungeon crawlers like Diablo, chances are you’ll enjoy ORC: Vengeance. You play as an orc who has to gather his kin together to go up against the Dark One and his vile army. Par for the course with dungeon crawlers, the game is full of loot, like weapons and armor to equip, potions to guzzle, and gold to spend. As you slay enemies, you level up and distribute points to specialize your skills. It’s a great big game with great big ambitions that it realizes fantastically.
Our Bottom Line: ORC: Vengeance is a game that every action-RPG/dungeon-crawler fan should own. You’ll easily get lost in Rok’s epic quest to avenge his people, and you might even get a little sad when you eventually reach your goal.
In this fantastic free strategy game from Tilt To Live creators One Man Left, you control a gang of pirates, robots, and other odd creatures who are trying to destroy their enemy’s base. With the asynchronous online play, you send a move to your friend or random Game Center opponents, then wait for them to send one back to you. The units are perfectly balanced– some can hop around the board to score quick hits, while others are slow but pack a punch. The graphics are utterly charming, and with an active user base, it’s easy to find some tough competition.
Our Bottom Line: Outwitters is an effortless joy to play. Once you get a few games under your belt, you’ll have a hard time stopping.
#41: Knights of Pen & Paper
If you have fond memories of sitting in the basement with friends, eating chips and soda while rolling dice and fighting imaginary monsters, you’ll love Knights of Pen & Paper. This nostalgic, D&D-inspired RPG lets you choose some friends, stock up on snacks, and then go on a quest. At any time, you can shift between the fantasy world the dungeon master is creating for you and the real world, where you can raid the pantry for stat-boosting snacks. Knights of Pen & Paper has a remarkable graphical style and sense of humor, making it an easy addition to our Top 50 iOS games of the year.
Our Bottom Line: Journey to the age of Monster Manuals and D20s with Knights of Pen & Paper, a loving spoof of classic, 8-bit RPGs.