Maxon Pugovsky is a mobile games producer at Gameloft, living in Saigon, Vietnam.
In such a world of plenty, many notable releases can slip under the radar, hence this regular list, highlighting the most interesting releases over the past month.
Curated by Maxon Pugovsky, this is an edited version from his newsletter on mobile games.
You can also check out the list for previous months here.
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- Empires Mobile (IGG.com)
4X fantasy strategy with heroes similar to Rise of Kingdoms. From Chinese creators of Lords Mobile.
- WWE Undefeated (nWay)
RPG/Fighting with a deck-based combat from California-based developers. License for real-world wrestling stars is included.
- Mist Forest (NetEase)
Idle character collecting RPG with portrait orientation. A step into AFK Arena territory.
- Birdie Crush: Fantasy Golf (Com2Us)
Golf simulator with anime girls characters from Korean publisher of Summoners War.
- Dynasty Scrolls (Yoozoo Games)
Character collecting RPG in Chinese mythology world.
- Modern Dead (Onemt)
RPG and city-building strategy combination in zombie apocalypse setting. From the publisher focused on Middle-East market.
- Stella Arcana (LRGame Inc)
Open world MMORPG with combat, house decorations, pets and dating. Debut title with high production quality from the company registered in Hong Kong.
- Legacy of Destiny II: Dark vs Light (UnlockGames)
Fantasy MMORPG with 3D graphics and portrait orientation from Chinese publisher.
NOTABLE NEW RELEASES
- Fruit Ninja 2 (Halfbrick Studios)
The classic is back with a PvP mode and extended meta. The first Fruit Ninja was released on iOS in April 2010.
- Warpath (Lilith Games)
WW2-themed 4X strategy with real-time controls of troops. From Chinese company behind top-grossing Rise of Kingdoms and AFK Arena. Android version out now; iOS is expected on January 19.
- Evo Pop (Zeptolab)
Real-time strategy game with original concept: multiply cell-like creatures to dominate the map.
- Street Fighter: Duel (Tencent/China only)
3v3 real-time multiplayer fighting game in the famous series, but for Chinese market only. Taiwanese singer Jay Chou is taking part as game ambassador and playable character.
- Heroes War: Counterattack (Com2Us)
Character collecting RPG in post-apocalyptic fantasy world. Buy heroes of your choice without gacha. Turn-based combat introduces character movements and counterattacks on enemy turn.
- A3: Still Alive (Netmarble)
Dark fantasy open-world MMORPG with various PvP modes, including battle royale for 30 players. Reached 1M+ downloads in Google Play.
- Guitar Girl: Relaxing Music Game (Neowiz)
Music game with UI simulating livestreaming app. Over 1M downloads on Google Play.
- Star Wars: Starfighter Missions (Joymax)
Shoot’em up in Star Wars universe from Korean publisher. Looks like the game is licensed for a limited number of countries and won’t be released globally.
- Slam Dunk (DeNA)
Basketball arcade sim with 3v3 matches based on anime by Toei Animation. Over 1M downloads on Google Play.
- TheOdd1sOut: Let's Bounce (BroadbandTV)
Simple bouncing game featuring youtuber TheOdd1sOut.
- Transport City: Truck Tycoon (CupGum)
Send trucks to deliver goods and hire drivers. The game is developed by Hong Kong-registered company, specialized in branded games, for Beyond Infinity, German manufacturer of electrical ride on cars for children.
- XCOM 2 Collection (Firaxis Fames/Feral Interactive/2K Games/$24.99)
Iconic turn-based tactical strategy comes to iOS, including all DLC packs. Only on iOS.
- Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead (Software/Headup/$4.99)
Construct bridges and traps to escape hordes of zombies and meet chracters from the famous franchise. Simultaneous release on PC and consoles.
- Forager (HopFrog/Humble Bundle/$7.99
Survival-crating in 2D open world. Popular indie game from Argentinian studio released on Steam in April 2019 to very positive reviews. Only on iOS.
- Moonlighter (11 bit studios/$11.99)
Action RPG about shopkeeper, who is adventuring in dungeons by night. Indie hit available on Steam since May 2018 to very positive reviews. Only on iOS.
- Samorost 2 (Amanita Design/$2.99)
15 years after PC release Czech developers ported classic adventure on mobile.
- Football Manager 2021 Mobile (Sega/$8.99)
Sports manager simulator is back on shelves every year.
- Embracelet (Machineboy/$6.99)
Adventure about teenager in Northern Norway, who possesses a magical bracelet. Also released on PC and Nintendo Switch in September 2020. Only on iOS.
BEST OF THE REST
- Garage Empire (Fingersoft)
Idle cars tycoon with arcade racing. From Finish studio behind hit Hill Climb Racing series, which generated over 1B downloads.
- Shadow Fight Arena (Nekki)
Real-time PvP fighting, where you enter the battle with a team of 3 fighters. Games in Shadow Fight series from Russian publisher Nekki were downloaded 500M times.
- Frostborn: Co-op Survival (Kefir Games)
iOS release of survival crafting game in Nordic setting from Russian studio. Android version was available since May 2019. Last Day on Earth: Survival from Kefir was downloaded 50M+ times on Google Play.
- Forsaken World: Gods and Demons (Youzu)
Fantasy open-world MMORPG with autoplay and flying from Chinese publisher.
- Project Makeover (Bubblegum Games)
Match3 with a fashion inspired narrative meta: “Make Up! Dress up! Renovate!”. A debut game by American studio from Palo Alto, California.
- Hellopet House (Appxplore/iCandy)
Pet-themed cooking time manager. Prepare meals and bouquets for dogs and cats, renovate a house and collect pets in meta game.
- Dystopia: Contest of Heroes (Beetroot Lab)
Base building war strategy following Clash of Clans steps, but in a vivid scifi art-direction. Latvian studio worked on the game for 5 years. The main character is played by UFC star Conor McGregor.
- Shining Beyond (XII Braves)
Character collecting RPG with anime-styled art direction from Singaporean studio.
- Destiny Child: Defense War (Thumbage)
Squad-based tower defense with characters gacha.
- Room Flip: Design Dream Home (Nukebox Studios)
Match-3 with a winning formula for meta-game: you are the host of renovation TV show. Developed by Indian studio behind Spongebob Krusty Cook-Off released in partnership with Tilting Point.
- Bullet Knight (Kooapps Games)
Yet another Archero follower. From publisher of Pictoword and Snake.io.
- War Alliance (MG Magnific Games)
RTS in Clash Royale style. Debut game from a German studio based in Berlin.
- Hay Day Pop (Supercell)
Match-3 in a farming setting is closing down in the end of January. The game didn’t make it through soft launch stage. Purchased hard currency is transferable to other Supercell game.
- Saint Seiya Shining Soldiers (Bandai Namco)
1v1 command-based battler with a license from Japanese manga Saint Seiya is closing global servers in January 2021. The game amassed 500K+ downloads on Google Play.