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Our Favorite Android Games of 2016

As a mobile gamer, I’d say 2016 was a solid year for Android games. We saw a huge ridiculously massive launch with Pokémon GO, enjoyed multiplayer fun with Exploding Kittens, and made our way through beautiful landscapes in Alto’s Adventure. Sure, Tiny Wings still isn’t out on Android, but screw it, we’re moving on.

We have compiled a list of our favorite Android games of 2016, but they are in no particular order. To put it simply, these are the games we most enjoyed during the year, so if you happened to miss any of them, be sure to check them out.

Here we go.

Pokémon GO

Hate it or love it, Pokémon GO was huge. It was massive. From a nostalgia standpoint, Pokémon GO brought the little Pocket Monsters back into the hearts of millions, and whether or not the game is all that amazing, it at least got people out of their house and interacting with others on a scale that no other mobile game has ever done.

If you need a quick recap of how it works, players select a team (Blue, Red, or Yellow), then go out into the world and find Pokémon. Once you have your little creatures, you can place them inside of Gyms and have them battle each other. To get more supplies, such as PokéBalls and pieces of fruit to help capture more powerful Pokémon, you must head to PokéStops. The overall goal is to walk around your area, discover new Pokémon, and basically become your neighborhood’s premier Pokémon Master.

I may be wasting my breath telling you this, but if you still haven’t given this game a go, it’s never a bad time to start playing. It’s a ton of fun, at least until you hit around the Level 30 mark, then it becomes a real pain to level up.

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Last Horizon

Last Horizon is a game we talked about around the time of its launch, but not much more. To me, the game is very enjoyable, but sadly, it’s rather short and some may find it to be a little on the easy side. While both of these criticisms could be labeled as true, this game is still plenty of fun.

To break it down, you command a spaceship in an attempt to find a new world, since your home planet has been destroyed. The controls are just like the classic Asteroids game, and on top of that, there are many obstacles you will face on your way towards a new home planet. Along the way, you will need to refuel on alien planets, meaning you will need to master the art of thruster management, which is no easy task.

For the price of $3, Last Horizon is a pretty great game for fans of space and the classic arcade-style games. Definitely worth the price of admission.

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Auralux: Constellations

Another game we raved about at time of launch, Auralux: Constellations is a sequel to the original Auralux strategy game. In the sequel, War Drum Studios introduced a ton of new intergalactic Risk-like levels, Android TV support, an online multiplayer, and native 4K support. The result of these additions is a game that looks much better and offers hours of gameplay possibilities.

In the game, you are given command of planets that produce units. These units are used to capture additional planets (which create more forces), as well as destroy your enemy’s planets. The goal is to destroy your enemies and capture all planets.

At first, the game seems easy enough, but let me tell you, it ends up being anything but easy. There are countless levels in the sequel that I cannot complete, simply because the computer’s AI seemingly predicts my move before I can make it. While this is aggravating and extremely challenging, it does help create a unique gaming experience that strategy game lovers will enjoy.

The game is free to download, but to unlock all levels and content, you are looking at a full purchase price of $9.99.

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Exploding Kittens

The most funded game in Kickstarter history, otherwise known as Exploding Kittens, made its way to Android this year. To put it elegantly, this game totally kicks ass.

To start, you will need to learn the rules, but trust me, it’s not difficult at all. To sum up the game, it ends once a player pulls an exploding kitten card and doesn’t have a card to disarm the bomb. However, while everyone is on pins and needles in a desperate attempt not to pull that exploding kitten card, there are other cards in the deck that can help master strategists ensure their victory against opponents.

I can’t say enough good things about Exploding Kittens, so please, if you have a friend you’d like to challenge (you can also play random online opponents), definitely go grab it for the $1.99 price. You won’t be disappointed.

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Alto’s Adventure

Perhaps 2016 scared you completely under a rock and you missed out on the awesomeness that is Alto’s Adventure, but don’t worry, that’s what yearly recaps such as this are for.

In this game that will surely go down as one of the best mobile games ever created (there’s likely some type of scientific research to back this claim up), you initially play as Alto in a snowboarding adventure down a hill. As Alto, you are tasked with capturing escaped llamas. Now, if that does’t set the scene for a great game, I don’t know what will.

Anyway, as you progress in the game by completing various challenges, you unlock new characters that all have different skill sets. Some characters can jump higher, while others keep momentum better as they go downhill. The point is, with plenty of challenges and characters to do crazy flip and grind tricks, Alto’s Adventure is a game you don’t want to skip.

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Honorable Mentions

Is this list missing something better? Let us know in the comments.

  • J Crand

    Sky Force 2016 was easily my favorite of the year!

  • My favorite Pokemon Go is top in the list… I love to play.

  • Tim Massing

    What about Tomb Raider GO or Deus Ex GO?

  • WK

    Never understood what the big deal with Alto’s Adventure is. I played it for 5 minutes and its pretty much the same thing as Ski Safari, which came out years ago.

  • Raven

    I apparently got Last horizon with a Humble Bundle purchase, but I have never tried it. With Tim’s endorsement, I will have to check it out.

  • How is Crashlands not in this list?!

  • MichaelFranz

    Still waiting for that Granny Smith 2….

  • tmenke88

    Any of the Super Stickman Golf games are fun. #3 came out in 2016 and it has more features than ever.(I’m a big fan of #2 though)

  • DanSan

    my brother recently got me hooked on clash royale. cant put the damn thing down

  • Miguel

    Alto’s Adventure and Sky Force Reloaded were my favorite games of 2016.

  • soccerburn55

    Tim will you ever give up on Tiny Wings coming to Android?

  • Mvrcel Lgt

    Maybe it came out before 2016 but I got to know “never alone” in 2016 and it’s one of the best games I ever played on a mobile device.

  • michael arazan

    Still addicted to Air Control by 4 Pixels, had it since 2010, play it 2 hours a day across all my devices, so much it burns into every screen I have used

  • Aprat


  • Randy B

    Marvel Contest of Champions

  • JMonkeYJ

    I’ll throw out a vote for The Room 3. They really outdid themselves with 3. It’s a huge, long game with a semi-open world feel. I hope they keep making them.

  • The Bilderbergers

    Give it a few more months and Roller Coaster Tycoon should make this list. Loving this mobile version!

    • ckeegan

      VR support?

  • Adrian

    Oceanhorn. Beautiful game. Runs like a champ. Plays like Zelda and since I won’t hold my breath waiting for the real Zelda to ever come to Android, I’m happy they took my money.

  • Harold JP Castro

    Real racing 3 deserves special mention, they keep adding stuff (which costs $ obviously, but it’s worth it), and their latest addition is a big deal if you’re into Motorsports: Formula E.