Mobile games are fun, simple and accessible, but that doesn't mean they are lightweight or insignificant. They have the ability to bend time and make commutes bearable; they transform idle moments into thrilling distractions. In a new series, CVG celebrates the most impressive examples of this exciting new wave of games.
Click through the link to find our full list of the best mobile games.
Best iPhone games: 10000000
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EightyEight Games has forged another irresistible mobile game from App Store alchemy. It's becoming a common theme, in fact. Bad Hotel is musical plaything reconfigured as a tower defence game, Bitless is platformer plus free runner and Triple Town is a match-three town builder. Even the peerless Drop7 feels like Tetris mashed in with sudoku, with powerfully addictive, time-swallowing results.
10000000 (or ten million - it still takes a moment to parse those digits) goes one step further, placing one genre inside the other like a set of Russian nesting dolls. It's a match three puzzler inside a free-runner wrapped up in a simple RPG, with a retro aesthetic.
You slide, rather than swap, the pixellated tiles around on the game's grid, and your aim is to further the adventures of the pixellated protagonist at the top of the screen. As he runs from left to right, he must vanquish blocky skeletal guards, unlock doors, extinguish fiery obstacles and raid chests for treasure. Match three sword tiles and he takes a swing at an enemy. Unlocking doors and chests requires three or more keys in a row, and attack spells can be cast by lining up three or more red staff tiles. Dither too long and the hero returns home defeated.
One game feeds into the other as you desperately scan the grid for the required match to keep your run going. Playing two games at once feels overwhelming at times, and sliding a key tile into place just before time runs out doesn't give you respite, it merely prolongs the agony. It is a difficult skill to learn, and one which requires calm calculation and total concentration.
'The only bad move is no move at all' reads one of the slogans on the game over screen, and it is a neat little tip. Once exhausted of match options, it is vital to keep the grid moving by slotting other tiles into place. The stone, chest, shield and wood tiles appear to be distractions at first, but they contribute to 10000000's smart player upgrade system - the third, outer layer of EightyEight's opus.
Away from the dual pressure of the dungeon runs, the game's hub is where your hero can upgrade his skills with the currency gained during play. Edging towards that final total of ten million will take hours and hours, so fortunately your quest is made less daunting and a little different each time. Tasks set in each run ask you to match a certain number of a tile type, or use in-game items in a particular way. Do so and 10000000 gifts you more treasure, which feeds back into your ever-scaling skillset.
Great mobile games transfix players until they look up and realise an hour, or worse, their destination, has passed them by. 10000000 has that quality in abundance. An excellent, intense, intelligently-layered action puzzler.
10000000 is £1.49 on the App Store. Download it here.