Puzzle games, just like every other genre, are sharing in the mobile gaming boom. Touchscreen controls are ideal for intuitive control of puzzle elements, and short, sharp mental challenges are perfect for gaming on the go. From abstract games and physics puzzles to murder mysteries and more, check out these 20 challenging puzzle games that you can enjoy anywhere.
Deus Ex Go (Android, iOS) is the latest in Square Enix’s Go series of puzzle game tie-ins to its triple A game releases. You step into the augmented shoes of cybernetic agent Adam Jensen, infiltrating and hacking your way past puzzles and hazards that range from armed guards to gun turrets and electronic defenses. Your ultimate goal: unlock a technothriller mystery unfolding in the cyberpunk world of Deus Ex. In addition to a 50-mission campaign, the game also comes with special events like time-limited puzzles, an Infinite Mode, and a level editor for creating and sharing your own puzzle levels.
The Room 3 (Android, iOS) builds on the success of its previous installments, providing gamers with a series of challenging puzzles and satisfyingly tactile controls. Players must unravel a series of increasingly complex puzzles as they seek to unearth the secrets of The Null and the mysterious Craftsman. The game’s hallmark is its use of touch screen controls, with swipes, taps, and gestures intuitively manipulating puzzle elements, giving the game a very natural, immersive feel. New additions to the series include a 'hub' area called Grey Holm with a series of ongoing puzzles, as well as a branching ending that depends on how well you solve the game's mysteries.
Carve out your own underground railway empire with Mini Metro (Android, iOS), a sleek mobile puzzle that has you managing your own underground rail lines. Players start out with a limited number of lines and trains and must connect stations together to efficiently move passengers. Keep them waiting for too long, and it’s game over. As your network grows, you gain access to more resources, such as new lines, extra trains, improved stations, and bridge tunnels to cross rivers. The game comes with a variety of maps recreating major cities, with more maps unlocked as you progress.
Brave the life-draining halls, traps and hazards in order to deliver the mail in Warlock's Tower (Android, iOS), a retro-styled puzzle game that works with a really simple rule to build fiendishly complex puzzles: One move equals one life. Players carefully plan their moves, charting a course between life gems and counting the steps to the exit. What starts out simple quickly grows in complexity as levels add new challenges, from zombies that inch forward with every third move, to conveyor belts, teleporters, and even levels where you control two characters.
Inspired by the Robert Frost poem of the same name, Spry Fox's Road Not Taken (Android, iOS) is a turn-based puzzle roguelike that has a Jawa-like robed wizard working to save the town's lost children by wandering the frozen forests to reunite them with their parents. Using your magic staff, you can pick up objects, animals, and children, but carrying them drains your life force, so it's more effective to pick things up, and then toss them to where you need them. The game's environmental puzzles include a crafting element, as you pick up and combine objects to create new items that you use to overcome obstacles. Players must survive 15 years (levels) of procedurally-generated puzzle mazes, so no two games are ever the same.
Anyone can hurl expletives, but it takes true skill to throw a well honed insult. In Oh...Sir!: Insult Simulator (Android, iOS), players take turns drafting from a limited selection of words to create the nastiest barbs they can come up with. The cartoon style and situations draw heavily from the surreal British humor of Monty Python's Flying Circus, and players can trade insults against the AI, engage in pass-and-play word wars or go head to head against other players online.
Concrete Jungle (Android, iOS) combines tile-laying and deckbuilding mechanics to simulate the challenges of urban planning. Players must balance housing, economy, and expenditures to develop their city. Houses and apartments score points, while factories and economic buildings can affect the score of adjacent tiles. As your economy grows, you can unlock advanced cards with powerful abilities, but as you use more expensive tiles, the minimum score requirement for each row of buildings increases. The game comes with a fully-voiced single player mode, custom games, and even a competitive mode where opposing planners try to score points while interfering with the other player's plans.