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The 12 mobile games we're most excited about in 2016

The 12 mobile games we're most excited about in 2016

With 2015 now over and done with, it's time to forget the past and start looking ahead to what is to come.

And that means talking about the games we're most interested in that are slated for release in 2016.

Risky business

Of course, in the fast-moving mobile environment, it's near-impossible to know which games will truly grab our attention, which will appear out of nowhere and take the world by storm, and which will even come out at all.

Indeed, even the most cursory of glances at last year's list throws up titles that ended up cancelled, weren't very good, or are still languishing in soft launch.

But for now, let's remain optimistic, and look ahead at the games we're looking forward to hitting our devices at some point in 2016 - as listed in alphabetical order. 


Click here to view the list »
  • 1 Age of Empires: World Domination

    Age of Empires: World Domination logo

    The last Age of Empires game to appear on mobile might not have been up to snuff - our IAP Inspector was not a fan of its monetisation, for example - but there's high hopes for World Domination.

    Published by Japanese outfit Klabs, it has all the trappings of the usual Clash of Clans-esque strategy game we've come to know on mobile, there also looks to be a deep real-time strategy aspect to it, which brings us a step closer to have the PC version on a mobile device.

    So while you'll still need to build your base and gather resources, you'll also be sending units out to battle, tell them where to move and attack in large-scale battles against other leaders and factions.


  • 2 Clash Royale

    Clash Royale logo

    A sneaky little title that popped up just in time for this list, Clash Royale's blend of CCG, MOBA, and tower defence, all set in the world of Supercell's mega-hit Clash of Clans, looks very interesting indeed.

    You have two lanes and three towers to defend, and have to send your units down each lane to attack your opponents towers and lay them to waste before they can do the same to you.

    Units come in the form of cards, which you'll build a deck of before going into battle, allowing you to fine-tune your strategy and turn yourself into an unstoppable war machine.


  • 3 Crashlands

    Crashlands logo

    Crashlands hasn't had the steadiest of development periods.

    Butterscotch Shenanigans' "outlandish sotry-driven action-adventure"  was supposed to launch sometime in 2015, but was delayed time and time again, and has now been pushed back into 2016.

    But it looks to almost certainly be worth the wait. A hybrid of action-RPG and survival, Crashlands sees you fighting off enemies on an alien planet while crafting items to aid you in not dying.

    There's quests to undertake, bases to build, and hundreds of things to make and use against the various nasties on the planet's surface.

    And there's cross-platform play too, allowing you to save your progress between devices and PC, if you so desire.


  • 4 CSR Racing 2

    CSR Racing 2 logo

    Following on from the gorgeous drag racer that was CSR Racing, the sequel, aptly named CSR Racing 2, takes you back to the streets in what is shaping up to be a bigger, better, and more beautiful entry in the series.

    Developed by Zynga-owned NaturalMotion, you'll be amassing a variety of high-end vehicles to take out on to the city streets at night, competing against Crews and taking on daily challenges to boost your reputation and unlock newer, better rides.

    There's also a ton of customisation to get stuck into, including new body parts, paint jobs, and even the wheel trims if you so desire. And you can of course upgrade the various parts of your car so give you a more competitive edge over your opponents.


  • 5 Dawn of Titans

    It's taken its sweet time getting here, having being delayed by Zynga to try and squeeze some more basis points into it's D30 retention, but Dawn of Titans will be launching in 2016, and it's definitely got us interested.

    Promising large-scale battles that have thousands of soldiers on the battlefield, Dawn of Titans focuses more on the titular Titans, which loom over the landscape and deliver huge blows to enemy opposition.

    There's been a wealth of updates over the game's ten months of soft launch, with developer NaturalMotion adding in hundreds of battles, a ton of new campaigns, additional features to improve the experience of working with alliances, and plenty of bug fixes to make sure the final release is as good as it can be.


  • 6 Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2

    Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2 logo

    With the Marvel media machine in full swing across TV and film, it only makes sense that Disney would want to also corner the gaming market with the abundance of franchises at their disposal.

    So really, Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2, a sequel to the popular 3v3 battler that had you forming teams of your favourite Marvel heroes to take on evildoers, isn't that surprising.

    The new game looks to be more of the same battling action, with a storyline to work through alone or with the help of your friends, and customisation options to alter your heroes abilities and look the way you want.

    You can sign up for the beta, if you're so inclined, over at the official website.


  • 7 Micro Machines

    Micro Machines logo

    AppSpy's James Gilmour may not have been particularly favourable to the latest Micro Machines game in his preview video, which you can see below, but there's still time for Codemasters and Chillingo to iron out the problems in its upcoming racer.

    It has all the hallmarks of a classic Micro Machines game, after all. There's miniature toy cars ranging from sporty coupes to ambulances to race with, absurd racing environments in the form of tabletops and kitchen surfaces, and multiplayer racing to battle your friends in.

    There's also a bunch of different modes to try out, and over a hundred different weapons to attack your fellow racers with and get ahead of the pack.


  • 8 Mini Metro

    Mini Metro logo

    So trains might not be everyone's cup of tea, but trust me when I say that Mini Metro will make you interested in tightly-controlled transit systems that run on time.

    A minimalist puzzle game from developer Dinosaur Polo Club, it sees you creating train lines between subway stations, with a limited number of trains and lines available to you, meaning you have to plan out your routes perfectly to avoid clogging the system and annoying a lot of commuters.

    It's already available on PC, but the short play sessions and minimal interface should make it a perfect fit for mobile play on your own commute.


  • 9 Prison Architect

    Prison Architect logo

    Whether this prison management sim will actually reach mobile devices in 2016 is anyone's guess, having been all but forgotten publicly by Introversion after its PC release, but we're crossing our fingers that Prison Architect does sneak onto tablets sometime soon.

    After an incredibly successful alpha release that was continually updated over several years, the game has evolved into an incredibly in-depth management sim, seeing you take over all aspects of a prison, from cells to sanitation and psychiatrists.

    There's also an Escape Mode if you want to try and break out of your own maximum security establishments, and Introversion are still adding new things and fixing bugs even now the game has been officially released.


  • 10 Super Meat Boy Forever

    Super Meat Boy Forever logo

    Another game that's more "fingers crossed" than "definitely coming out", Super Meat Boy Forever has been in and out of development for a while now, but I've got a good feeling about its chances at a 2016 release.

    A brand new take on the hard-as-nails platformer, the game sees you controlling the titular small cube of anthropomorphic meat as he navigates his way through deadly worlds, leaping over giant saws and other monstrous obstacles to save his girlfriend, Banadage Girl.

    It's being designed with mobiles in mind, but designer Ed McMillen is keen to avoid the trappings of free-to-play design and make something that can be enjoyed by all types of players, while retaining the original's ridiculously high level of difficulty.

  • 11 Survivor Squad

    Survivor Squad logo

    Jon balked when I suggested this could see a 2016 release, since it's been in soft launch since July 2014, but I have a good feeling about this one.

    A co-op shooter played from a top-down perspective, Survivor Squad has you fending off waves with zombies with your friends, using a variety of weapons to blow them away across a multitude of cities.

    You can upgrade and customise your weapons as you go, team up with clans, work through the story, and chase a tattooed pig, which probably means something more important than it sounds.


  • 12 Zombie Gunship Inc.

    Zombie Gunship Inc. logo

    We haven't heard a lot, if anything, about Zombie Gunship Inc. since June 2015, but we're quietly confident it'll find its way to us in 2016, and it should be a lot of fun.

    With original developer Limbic at the helm, and Flaregames taking the role as publisher, Zombie Gunship Inc. will take the core idea of the original game and translate it for a modern, free-to-play audience.

    So you can expect all the destructive, explosion-filled, zombie killing action from the safety and comfort of a flying war machine, all of which will be packaged together with some engaging meta-gameplay loops to earn (or buy) more powerful weaponary and aircraft.

Deputy Editor

Ric has written for PocketGamer.biz for as long as he can remember, and is now Deputy Editor. He likes trains.

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Markus Hemm Business Developer at Eageron
This is definitely a nice pick! I'm very excited about Crashlands and of course Micro Machines, which brings back some Childhood memories! =)
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