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Community Wiki questions can be a great tool for this site, but they require active curation by the person who posted them, and the question needs to be asked in a way that makes the answers more than a list of app names.

A question about "awesome" iOS games that gave criteria for awesomeness, or even a question that prompted its answers to explain not just what the game is, but to explain what makes the game "awesome" could be quite useful on this site. While a few of the answers here do that, most are sadly just lists of game titles and (perhaps) descriptions.

We're closing this as not constructive. A constructive question could exist that does what this question attempts to do, but it will take careful management that starts with the early stages of the question and continues long after that. -- Daniel◆

Despite being a subjective question, it is a useful one for newcomers to the iOS platform, and serves to aid the gaming community.

What are your favorite iOS games?

Rules:

  1. Limit to one application per answer.
  2. Add a short description for the application.
  3. Add a link to the website in the name of the application, if possible (no direct downloads).
  4. Use ## [game name](link if possible) when citing the game.

Only iOS games please; there's another question for Mac OS X games.

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2  
Why not go out on a limb and list some criteria that make a game great? Something more selective than someone somewhere at one point in time thought this iOS game was great? –  bmike Dec 3 '11 at 15:29
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closed as not constructive by Daniel Lawson Nov 15 '12 at 3:18

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

26 Answers

Angry Birds

It's pretty addictive ^_^

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Didn't Time Magazine list it in the "top ten" list for 2010? –  GEdgar Dec 3 '11 at 17:47
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Tilt to Live

App Store

Simple controls can do a lot... you just tilt and move this arrow around and annihilate lots of red dots. It's addicting :D

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Words with Friends

Somebody had to mention this... It's like Scrabble, but missing many of the important elements that make the game so great. The more important part is not the game itself but the chance to casually reconnect with friends.

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This is Wordfeud, right? –  Joost Nov 21 '12 at 7:45
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Fieldrunners

In my opinion, the best open-field tower defense game on for iOS. Very clean, well made, not nearly as "gimmicky" looking as many of the other tower defense games for iOS.

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Bloons Tower Defense

A really great track-style tower defense game, and one of the best ports of a tower defense game from the web to iPhone.

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Monster Dash

From the makers of Fruit Ninja (which is also awesome)

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Doodle Jump

App Store

Very simple basic idea (jump ever upward along unending series of plaforms without falling), yet with a constant rhythm and smooth (accelerometer) controls that make the game challenging and addictive.

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Ninjatown: Trees of Doom (HD)

Great pick-up up an play game where you control a ninja trying to get as high as you can without hitting obstacles. The graphics are very vibrant.

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Flight Control

From Wikipedia:

Flight Control is a game for the iOS, DSiWare, WiiWare, developed by Firemint and first released for the iOS on March 5, 2009. The app was #1 on the App Store in 19 countries simultaneously on April 6, 2009 and has over 2 million sales.

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Zen Bound

A meditative puzzle game of wrapping rope around wooden sculptures. It is a tactile game, with a focus on making wood and stone look and feel real and believable.

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Edge

Isometric world where you control a cube which you safely have to get through the levels. Watch out not falling through the floor.

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Cut the Rope

Fairly recent. Description from Wikipedia:

"The object of each of the game's numerous levels is to manoeuver a piece of candy into the mouth of a cartoon monster, and also to pick up up to three stars per level by touching them with the candy. The candy hangs by one or several ropes which the player can cut with a swipe of their finger, and can also be manipulated through other objects such as bellow"

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Cat Physics

The goal of Cat Physics is to successfully direct a ball from one onscreen kitty to another. The layout of each level, placement of the goal cat, and many different obstacles work to prevent you from completing this seemingly simple task. To aid you, moveable arrow icons can be placed in the path of the ball, launching it in the direction of the arrow displayed on each icon. How many arrows are on each level and what direction they point is always fixed (aside from occasional moving arrows), so it's up to you to figure out the best way to utilize them to complete a level. Scoring is based on getting the ball from the starting cat to the receiving cat in as short a distance as possible.

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Dark Nebula 1 and 2

Most people are familiar with this type of game. The basic object is to tilt your device to move your ball from one side of the map to the other. This game goes way beyond traditional “Labyrinth” games by adding all kinds of obstacles and having huge maps!

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Sparkle the Game

Sparkle plays like your basic marble shooter; you shoot your orbs at a moving "train" of orbs to make a match of three or more of the same color. The main objective is to keep the "train" from reaching the hole at the end of the track. How Sparkle differs from others, are its various power-ups and amulets. There are two types of power-ups, destructive and altering. Destructive power-ups use varying methods to destroy orbs and altering power-ups change orbs' colors, slow the "train", or make the "train" go backwards. Out of the ten or so power-ups, only around half of them are actually useful. There are fifteen amulets to be unlocked, each with their own attributes. Some of these are positive, and some may be considered negative. Amulets are rewarded after completing a set number of levels in Quest mode and can be selected in between levels.

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Trainyard

A Puzzle Solving Game for iPhone.

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1  
+1 it rocks :) Top effort for a single developer! –  Nippysaurus Oct 24 '10 at 21:56
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Monster Trouble HD

Maybe the best Tower Defense ever developed for iOS. You have to see the game. :)

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Battleground Defense

A great tower defense game. Awesome graphics and gameplay. Neat maps. Loved the game.

Here's a trailer.

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I really need to add GTA here now it has been released!

Grand Theft Auto III (£2.99 / $4.99)

10th Year anniversary release, what can I say this runs so well on iOS, at first I thought it would be hard to control, (I find a lot of joystick style games hard to control on touch) but with this all the controls are in the right place, you can tap anywhere to use the joystick.

I must say, I have wasted hours on this already.

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Does this game run well on a iPad 1? –  Loïc Wolff Dec 16 '11 at 17:09
    
Well it runs really well on the iPhone 4S which has the same graphics chip. –  Graeme Hutchison Dec 16 '11 at 17:27
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Minebyte FREE - Reckless Robot To The Rescue!

Found this game while searching for arcade style shooter games. It doesn't have that many downloads but it still is fun to play. First few levels are easier, but after sometime it's too hard and challenging to play. It got, I think 50 levels. Dunno why it's not a hit. They've got an iPad version too, in the name of Byteminer, but the iPhone version runs on iPad too, with that 2X button. Although iPad version has better graphics.

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Letterpress

Awesome asynchronous turn based word game.

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Battle Nations

Best strategic game ever. Check out the screenshots and reviews!

This is an online game where you make your own military base and train units to fight for the Imperial Army against other online players. A match of creativity and strategy. Addicting and time consuming!

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What makes it good? –  Daniel Lawson Nov 15 '12 at 3:07
    
It has a great story plot with missions that make the story flow. –  Eugene Nov 21 '12 at 6:43
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Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars

Following his father's murder, Huang Lee has a simple mission: deliver an ancient sword to his Uncle Kenny to ensure his family retains control of the Triad gangs of Liberty City. Huang is a spoiled rich kid who expects everything to run smoothly, but his trip does not go exactly as planned. After being robbed and left to die, he will search for honor, riches and revenge in the most dangerous and morally bankrupt city in the world.

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Order and Chaos Online

Order and Chaos
Finally a true real-time, full-3D MMORPG comes to the App Store: Explore a vast heroic fantasy world and join thousands of players in this massively multiplayer online experience that pushes the boundaries of epic!

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Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EP

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As for me, this is the best game I ever played on iOS. Perfect art and music background.

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP is an exploratory action adventure with an emphasis on audiovisual style. Traverse a mythic little realm, use a sword to do battle & evoke sworcery to solve mystical musical mysteries.

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