The very best tactical titles for your touchscreen.
With the release of Ace Patrol last week, we've found ourselves dipping back into our collection of mobile turn-based strategy games. We might still be waiting for a full Civilization experience on our touchscreens, but there are still plenty of top-notch games to get stuck into in the meantime. Here's our pick of the bunch.
OK, so it may not be the full-blooded Civilization game you've lost days of your life to on PC, but there's no denying that this port of the console edition of Civ is an essential purchase for any mobile strategy gamer. There are 16 different civilizations to take charge of, an interface that works surprisingly well on touchscreens, and all of the different victory conditions you'd expect from the series.
Crimson: Steam Pirates
The last thing we would have expected from the masterminds behind the legendary Halo series was a turn-based strategy game, but that's what Bungie cooked up for us on mobiles. Taking charge of the hero of the high seas Thomas Blood, you get to sample the first eight voyages for absolutely free, while additional adventures are available from the in-app purchase store. Combining thoughtful strategy with action gameplay, there's no reason not to sample the delights of the free installment.
Download Crimson Steam Pirates: iOS
Worms 2: Armageddon
You simply cannot have too much of Worms in your life, and with the recent release of Worms 2: Armageddon for Android devices, now is the perfect time to start taking your annelid friends on the road with you. You can take your pick from the series, but this is by far and away our favorite take on the classic franchise - there are bags of delicious weapons, plenty of daft humor, and one of the slickest touchscreen implementations of the series to be enjoyed here.
A colorful and cartoonish strategy experience awaits you in Oyaji Games' Mecho Wars. Featuring 20 singleplayer levels, 10 challenge maps, and a multiplayer mode, you'll need to carefully balance the acquisition of territory with shoring up your defenses, and making sure your troops are positioned to perfection. If you fancy a little light relief from the typically sombre games in the genre, Mecho Wars is a must-have.
Download Mecho Wars: iOS
Final Fantasy Tactics: The War Of The Lions
If the thought of taking a tactical Final Fantasy game on the go intrigues you, you might want to prepare your wallet - this game goes for an eye-watering $15.99 on the App Store. Is it worth it? Well, we think so, given that you're getting a pretty slick port of a console title that cost considerably more in the shops. The transition to touchscreens has been a successful one for the most part, and Final Fantasy die-hards will have no trouble getting their money's worth from the game.
Neuroshima Hex is an oldie but a goodie. Based on the extremely popular boardgame of the same name, this mobile edition has picked up no end of critical accolades since its 2011 release. Up to four players (human or AI) can take turns marching their troops to victory, there's asynchronous online multiplayer, and the game perfectly encapsulates the principle of 'easy to learn, hard to master'.
Great Big War Game
Both Great Big War Game and its predecessor Great Little War Game have earned their rightful positions as must-have purchases for new mobile device owners. Both titles are polished to perfection, and pack in plenty of humor alongside the tight and tactical gameplay. Vehicles, snipers, ground troops, and much, much more are on offer here - all wrapped up in an impressively lengthy, 40 hour singleplayer campaign. Once you're finished with that, you can get stuck into pass-and-play or online multiplayer.
Call of Cthulhu: The Wasted Land
Set in the world of the beloved Call of Cthulhu RPG, this mobile game places you squarely in charge of a group of World War One researchers and soldiers, exploring the mysteries of a powerful ancient enemy. Don't be put off by the comparatively primitive looks of The Wasted Land, this is a game that more than makes up for any graphical shortcomings with some very satisfying strategic combat and exploration.