Three people playing on their phones outside

Game Anytime, Anywhere: 8 of the Best Mobile Games of 2019

Games So Good You May Even Play at Home

If you ask the average gamer what they think about mobile gaming, chances are they won’t have many positive things to say for two reasons. The primary reason is the massive amount of monetization in mobile games. Mobile gaming has surpassed both PC and console gaming in terms of profit thanks to gacha game design and loot boxes that are part of most mobile games.

Due to how lucrative these systems are, top tier video game developers have started bringing excessive monetization into popular games, and gamers aren’t happy about that. Couple this with the fact that a lot of mobile games are poorly designed on numerous levels (due to their developers caring about money first, second and 10th, and good game design last), and you can understand why a lot of gamers dismiss mobile gaming entirely.

Make no mistake, mobile gaming has its issues. But don’t let them keep you from gaming on the go. Most people can’t fit a Nintendo Switch or Sony PSP in their pocket, but most everyone can fit a smartphone. There are plenty of mobile games that are well worth your time, and today we will be going over some of them.

Keep in mind that this list will not contain any popular games like Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy 7, Max Payne or Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. These are household names in gaming, and we’d like to highlight games that are primarily, or entirely, catered to mobile gamers. Let’s get started on some of the best mobile games!

Pokémon Go

No mobile gaming list would be complete without mentioning Pokémon Go. When Pokémon Go was released in the summer of 2016, it became one of the biggest gaming phenomena in history. Kids were playing it, grandparents were playing it, everyone was playing it. Pokémon Go got people outside and making new friends while they worked on "catching them all" on their phones. Dare I say, the first few months of Pokémon Go was one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences I’ve ever had.

Pokémon Go is an augmented reality game that has you catching Pokémon to expand your team and collect resources to level-up your Pokémon. The game has regular community day events that make catching rare, location-specific, and even shiny Pokémon a lot easier. There are also gym battles and raids, the latter which gives players the chance to catch legendary Pokémon.

Pokémon Go is best when played with friends, and in fact, can be downright unplayable if you live in an isolated area with little to no fellow trainers. Pokestops can be found at shops, libraries, monuments, etc. and contain essential resources like Poké Balls, Berries and Revives. If you live in an area with few Pokestops, then your only option is to purchase them with real money. This isn’t a viable option since you will use these items a lot.

Raids are a blast to play, but if there’s no one else around who plays, things like EX Raids won’t be possible for you to do since you won’t be able to solo them. People in California have it good but if you live in rural Montana, you might be out of luck.

The gameplay loop of Pokémon Go can also get stale after a while, as you catch your 497th Geodude for Geodude candies to level-up your Golem. The catching rates are also very inconsistent and sure to frustrate you. You could catch a 2200 CP Snorlax with a single Ultra Ball and then take 15 Ultra Balls to catch a 132 CP Weedle. Nevertheless, I think Pokémon Go is something every gamer should at least try.