Summer is a time for slumping town underneath the shade of an oak tree and hunkering down with your favourite iOS and Android games. Stay out of that sunlight to avoid glare and overheating devices, and you’ll be just fine.
As usual, there are plenty of new games for you to dig into this month, including Nintendo’s latest foray into mobile gaming and a spell-slinging augmented reality game from (probably?) the world’s most famous wizard.
Here are the best iOS and Android games for you to play in July 2019.
Colin Lane games have regularly featured in our lists of the best Android and iOS games. The maker of simple-yet-compelling tappers like Wrassling and Dunkers knows how to squeeze a whole lot of fun into a very simple premise. In Knight Brawl, you simply jump and attack while your enemies return the favour.
It’s chaotic but more than just a button masher, as well-timed and placed strikes are more likely to topple your enemies. Few games scream “MULTIPLAYER CARNAGE” as much as this, so we’re hoping for a multiplayer mode down the line. Even as it is, though, Knight Brawl is wholesome barbaric fun.
Dr. Mario World
One of the original Match-3 puzzlers makes its debut on mobile, casting you as Dr. Mario as he fires pills to dispose of pesky colour-coded viruses. Rather than being based around time limits, you have a limited number of capsules with which to get rid of the viruses, so – like the good doctor you are – you need to be methodical in how you fire them.
There’s plenty of visual variety with over 100 levels, and like Nintendo’s other mobile efforts, this one is free to play, so expect some in-app purchases. You can also play online with friends, either helping them out by sending them boosts or taking them on in battles.
Super Soccer Champs 2019
The long-running mobile football franchise comes back season after season, making small but well-advised changes that keep it near the top of the table. Super Soccer Champs (SSC) looks more like Sensible Soccer than FIFA for inspiration, which for the most part makes it feel much better on a touchscreen.
There are no fancy tricks or skills here, just highly manual control that teaches you to be selective in your passing and shooting. The AI has received some much-needed improvements, and this latest version includes online play, too.
The legendary MOBA IP makes its debut on Android, but it comes with a twist. This isn’t a MOBA but rather a turn-based tactics game in which you pick a crew of heroes and pit them in a series of battles against AI and other players.
You upgrade your heroes, form alliances to maximise bonuses for your units, and build up an army that suits your playstyle. It’s deceptively complex and easy to get lost in all the combinations of attributes and numbers. But power on, and you’ll be rewarded with a deep and brilliant game that will test your tactical mettle.
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
Any game from the makers of the phenomenon Pokemon Go is bound to get noticed, particularly if it’s set in the Harry Potter universe.
Wizards Unite may have launched with its fair share of problems, such as lacking clarity on how to cast spells in the right way. The principle, though – searching for magical artifacts in an augmented-reality world that gets you to walk around in the great outdoors – remains addictive and a perfect fit for summer.
You roam the world, collecting Foundables and Confoundables as well as other objects around the world. There’s a skill tree to upgrade, teaching you better spells that you can use to take on the monsters that you encounter. It still needs polishing, but there’s a great foundation here for another AR sensation from Niantic.
Durango: Wild Lands
Yes, mobile platforms (well, all platforms, really) are pretty well catered to when it comes to online survival games these days, but every now and then one comes along that shakes things up a bit.
Durango is such a game. In its visually lush prehistoric land of dinosaurs, you must team up with online players to survive and build a civilisation and steadily modernise the world. On top of that, you gather resources and, of course, tame dinosaurs to do your bidding.
It’s not only a great concept but feels and looks fantastic, too, with a great levelling system and an interesting world that beckons you to explore it.
Pokemon Rumble Rush
Will the Pokemon juggernaut ever stop? Not on the current evidence, is the answer. Pokemon Rumble Rush is the latest entry in the Pokemon Rumble series, and it does all those little things that have made the series such an addictive success until now.
The idea is that you explore an island, catch a load of Pokemon, then do the same when the island gets swapped for another one in two weeks’ time. The combat is pretty simple if you’re used to the Game Boy and DS games, but the loop of ‘catching them all’ is as compelling and relentless as ever.
The microtransactions come in with the refinement of ore, which you use to buy gear and upgrades for your Pokemon. Essentially, you can pay to speed up the process if you’re feeling impatient, and it’s not too obnoxious if you choose not to pay.
Remember Super Stickman Golf? This is essentially the multiplayer version of that from the same developer, except improved and polished in all the right places.
For the uninitiated, you control a little avatar and attempt to swipe a golf ball into the hole across a number of bright and colourful 2D courses. It’s super-silly, especially when you’re playing it with up to three other players in real-time as you do here.
But it’s the right kind of silly, leaving you giggling from the chaos that ensues as golf balls fly around and bounce off each other in your quest to hit the hole.
Solar Explorer: New Dawn
Gamers of a certain vintage will remember Lunar Lander fondly: the tough, fraught game where you had to use thrusters to gently land a spacecraft on a platform, avoiding walls and other obstacles as you made your descent.
Solar Explorer takes that concept and sends it into hyperdrive. Played at a beautifully immersive angle, it tasks you with building your own craft, then guiding it through cosmic debris fields on its descent to various planets.
It plays fairly simply but looks absolutely incredible, as you make your descent from space through thick planetary atmospheres and eventually down to the surface.
Another case of taking a simple concept – this time the Endless Runner genre – in a fun new direction. #Drive takes you on a ride through an endless array of vivid landscapes – from deserts to frozen wastes – in a 70s Trueno-style car.
Watch your fuel, drift around corners, and collect coins so you never stop moving. The art style captures that 70s feel, and the landscapes you go through give off a great sense of going on an American road trip.
The perfect game to play in short bursts.
Which games have been your favourite on iOS and Android in 2019 so far? Have we missed anything vital or included anything silly? Let us know in the comments!