Looking for an alternative to repetitive time-killers like Angry Birds or Candy Crush? Take a welcome detour with a truly engaging and interesting adventure game. The genre's focus on exploration, puzzles and story make adventure games a natural fit for mobile, leading to a rich variety of titles. You'll also find plenty of personality to these titles, some focusing on horror, some time travel and some murder mysteries. From old-school point-and-click ports to more modern fare with jaw-dropping graphics, here 15 of the best mobile adventure games for Android and iOS devices.
Telltale Games returns to the Walking Dead universe, this time focusing on a badass fan favorite with The Walking Dead: Michonne (Android, iOS). Covering the time between issues #126-139 of the comic book, the new three-episode mini-series covers where she went after leaving Rick & crew, and why she would eventually go back. Alternatingly gritty and haunted, Michonne makes for a compelling lead character in Telltale's latest zombie apocalypse story. As with other titles in the series, the choices you make in the first episode carry over, creating a variety of possible story outcomes as the series progresses.
Croteam's critically acclaimed "philosophical puzzler", The Talos Principle, makes an appearance on devices powered by Nvidia's Tegra K1/X1 hardware. As a newly awoken android in a world filled with classical ruins and high technology, players are tasked by their creator, the mysterious Elohim, to solve a variety of puzzles. You must unlock clues about what happened to create the desolate world that surrounds you. While The Talos Principle is a Tegra exclusive, it includes some reasonably smooth touchscreen controls, making it playable even without a gamepad.
Imagine William Shakespeare's "Hamlet" as a choose-your-path gamebook, and you get Ryan North's "To Be or Not To Be" (Android, iOS), which has you playing the part of Hamlet, Ophelia or Hamlet Senior on their insane adventures. Powered by Tin Man Games' Gamebook Adventures engine, the app takes full advantage of the digital format by accompanying the branching text with music, sound effects, hilarious achievements and an end-game "Haml-o-Meter" and a statistics page that compares your choices with the Bard's. A particular delight is the wealth of illustrations by a variety of Web comic greats such as Kate Beaton (Hark, A Vagrant), Zach Weinersmith (SMBC), and Matthew Inman (Oatmeal). Incredibly hilarious and brilliantly executed, "To Be or Not To Be" will make sure you’ll never look at Shakespeare the same way again.
Enter the world of Westeros in Telltale Games' latest adventure game based on the hit fantasy TV series Game of Thrones (Android, iOS). Players take control of the scions of House Forrester, minor bannermen of House Stark, in the great struggle for the throne of the Seven Kingdoms. Telltale Games' signature high-stakes, timed decision-making is particularly apt for the Game of Thrones episodic game, with players having to think on their feet as they make tough choices in the battlefield and within the murky politics of the court. With the release of the sixth episode, "The Ice Dragon", users an play the entire game in one go.
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.
A collaboration between indie musician iamyank and Possible Games, the Adventures of Poco Eco (Android, iOS) has players guiding the titular character through surreal, dream-like environments in search of the lost Sounds. Along the way, players must solve a variety of light environment puzzles, with the helpful Ledbug guiding the way. A low-stress adventure and puzzle game, Adventures of Poco Eco makes for a nice audiovisual treat for kids and adults alike.
Step into the shoes of Manny Calavera, travel agent to the dead in the remastered version of the classic adventure game Grim Fandango (Android, iOS). First released in 1998, Grim Fandango melds Mexican folklore, film noir sensitivities, and a healthy dose of humor to create a fun and memorable adventure game. Double Fine’s remastered version features improved graphics, an orchestral score, and a wealth of extras like developer commentary and concept art. About the only thing that hasn’t translated well is the obscure 90s adventure game puzzle design, which can be counterintuitive to modern gamers.