Mobile gaming often comes under fire for being repetitive cash grabs. With so many Clash of (insert buzzword) floating around the Play Store, it's hard to not think that gaming on Android is just a saturated mess. But I was pleasantly surprised with a couple of games, even more so because of the fact that they are available for free and on mobile.
1. HELLO YOGURT
Don't let the title fool you for it is easily one of the most unique games on this list. Essentially, you're following a bacterium through the digestive system of a person. An idea such as this is enough to captivate anyone but the constantly changing environments and the brilliant soundtrack adds a layer of depth unseen on most platformers on mobile. You have to make it through each layer of the human digestive system, collecting coins whilst unlocking new features on your journey. The design is light hearted and the mechanics are simple enough to catch anyone's attention.
2. MUSIC RACER
While most racing games on the platform are pushing towards realistic visuals and controls, Music Racer takes a step back. But it adds something rather unique for players. Select music from your phone to a racing track, let the level load and voila – the lights on the stage and the collectibles are all in sync with the song you selected. The visuals are charming with a shade of neon on every element of the environment. The aesthetics are lifted from vaporwave artworks and while I wouldn't recommend this game to anyone who is prone to epilepsy, I can safely say that this game is made to entice those looking to fit their favourite songs to picturesque visuals.
With gameplay similar to Monument Valley, this puzzle game will perplex you beyond belief. The minimalistic charm of the visuals tasks you with moving a red square to the end of the geometric levels. The levels can get quite frustrating but the feeling of putting your neurons to the test and making it to the end is rewarding beyond belief. Hocus also comes with an inbuilt level editor which gives you the chance to create absurd levels and share with your friends and for others to play.
Life simulator's are generally turn offs for most handheld gamers but Instlife, being free and all, is a very enjoyable experience. You get to live each turning point of your character's life, make decisions which affect his/her moral compass. And there are a lot of intricate decisions you get to make. What made the app stand out for me were the bare minimum visuals, displaying everything in list view. The cathartic experience of viewing every change and decision of your character's life resembles the drab and task oriented nature of real life.
5. LOL KART
Now to lighten the mood comes in the strangest cart racer available on any platform. The cartoony visuals are similar to The Simpsons and the animations are absolutely hilarious. It also allows for online multiplayer. I wanted to add this game here not because it has unique mechanics but because of its wacky aesthetics.
Asif Ayon just bought a new phone. Send him instructions on how to root it at firstname.lastname@example.org