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Pocket Gamer 10th Anniversary

My 10 best games of the past 10 years - Fraser MacInnes

PG old-skooler selects his highlights...
Product: Pocket Gamer 10th Anniversary | Publisher: Steel Media Ltd | Format: Android, iPhone, Mobile, Smartphone, iPad, 3DS, PS Vita
Pocket Gamer 10th Anniversary Android, thumbnail 1
As part of the 'PG 10th anniversary' fun this March, we've blackmailed former PG members into giving us a quick rundown of their favourite ten games of the past ten years. (We've also asked them to relive their PG moments, Fraser included.)

They've not been asked to rank these so don't take the order below as set in stone. Rather, think of these games as a collection of digital experiences that will enrich your life, taking you to a place you didn't think you'd ever get to.

Alternatively, you could look through the list and mock their choices.

Create your own list

If you do disagree, here's the magic bit: you can give us your list.

See the 'Create your own Top List' button at the bottom of the article? It's not a trick. Click that button and the rest should prove relatively straightforward.

You'll need to be registered with PG (and logged in) if you aren't yet.

(You can also create lists from within your Pocket Gamer user profile, at the bottom of the 'Logged in as [x]' dropdown menu.)

You can list your all-time favourite portable games, your favourite endless runners, shooters, candy-covered-pony-featuring titles, or even your favourite game making studios.

We all love lists. Share your thoughts and you can soon see your selection on the PG site.

What's all this, then?

The Pocket Gamer 10th anniversary is a month-long celebration of the last decade of mobile games running March 10th - April 10th and featuring a stream of retrospective articles and fun stuff, supported by our friends at Gram Games, Gamevil, JoyCity, Rovio, Nordeus, and Ninja Kiwi. Head over to the PG 10th anniversary homepage for more information.


#1 Wolfmoon

Product: WolfmoonFormats: MobileGenres: Adventure

This was before Angry Birds - a JAR point-and-click adventure with astounding production values for the time. Somehow, on a tiny crappy Sony Ericsson screen, it managed to conjure a thick atmosphere of dread.

#2 Urban Attack

Product: Urban AttackFormats: MobilePublisher: Vivendi Games MobileGenres: Action, Shooter

Urban Attack
This was editorially controversial because I wanted to give it a '10' (the first I'd have ever given) but Stuart Dredge won that argument – losing an editorial argument to Stuart Dredge definitely qualifies as an honour these days. At any rate, I think everyone agreed that no JAR game had any right to look this amazing. An incredible technical feat and great fun to boot – way ahead of its time.

#3 WipEout Pulse

Product: WipEout PulseFormats: PSPGenres: Racing, Shooter

WipEout Pulse
I have always been a die-hard of this series but the PSP versions really nailed the formula for me. Pure was great and Pulse improved on it in every way. Makes me wish I still had my old PSP.

#4 Peggle

Product: PeggleFormats: Android, iPod, SteamPublisher: PopCap GamesGenres: Puzzle

Too few games layer in enough joy into what they present but Peggle obsesses over it. It's the unicorn rainbow skittles hurricane of gaming and it's perfect on iOS.

#5 Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier

Product: Jak and Daxter: The Lost FrontierFormats: PSPPublisher: Sony Computer Entertainment EuropeGenres: Adventure

Jak and Daxter: The Lost Frontier
Given the constraints of the platform, the PSP was ideally suited to games like this – thirdperson action adventure titles – but saw all too few of them that were any good. This was was just breathlessly, effortlessly fun – a silly popcorn action flick in handheld form.

#6 Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EP

Product: Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EPFormats: Android, iPhone, iPad, SteamDeveloper: Capy GamesPublisher: Capy GamesGenres: Adventure

Superbrothers: Sword and Sworcery EP
These guys deserve a medal for singularly identifying and cornering the sizeable market of hipsters that own iPhones. Achingly cool but savagely atmospheric too and more than serviceable as a 2D RPG. File under the 'can games be art' debate, but not before playing the crap out of it.

#7 Pocket Planes

Product: Pocket PlanesFormats: Android, iPhone, iPadDeveloper: NimbleBitGenres: Casual, Simulation

Pocket Planes
Oddly matter of fact but still bursting with personality. It's basically just a very stylish tycoon sim. The reason I love it is because NimbleBit completely understood how to leverage their studio brand through the style of their games. The fact that the Star Wars version of Tiny Tower was still immediately recognisable as a Nimblbit game is testament to that.

#8 Clash of Clans

Product: Clash of ClansFormats: Android, iPhone, iPadDeveloper: SupercellGenres: Strategy, Tower defence

Clash of Clans
It's a little obvious to include this but it has to be here. I played it for five minutes and dismissed it almost immediately as another F2P city sim. Then a friend told me I had to pay attention to what they were doing with PvP and I subsequently lost countless hours and cash. I churned of course, as soon as I got locked into that progression purgatory so many players find themselves in. There is no denying, however, the deftness with which Supercell took all of the tropes of traditional RTS games and made them work without the real-time part – still impressive today.

#9 Fallout Shelter

Product: Fallout ShelterFormats: Android, iPhone, iPadPublisher: Bethesda Game StudiosGenres: Simulation

Fallout Shelter
Just fabulous. This is my go to example for almost everything in my professional life these days. A special mention to how they force the player to embody the role of 'Overseer' immediately - the layer of disconnect is removed immediately - you are a complicit part of the game's fiction and universe. This is kept up right through to the in-universe tone of the content updates - just amazingly well executed and horribly addictive.

#10 Badland

Product: BadlandFormats: Android, Blackberry, iPhone, iPad, PS VitaDeveloper: Frogmind GamesPublisher: Frogmind GamesGenres: Adventure

I haven't played all the way through that many single-player iOS games, due to their sheer volume, but I've played through this more than once. The astonishingly satisfying physics platforming is great in and of itself, but the world building through subtle background detail is where the magic is. It also has the most incredible sound design. Deserves all of the accolades it has received.


Reviewer photo
Joao Diniz Sanches 27 March 2016
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