Best iPhone and iPad games of 2013

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Gizmag breaks down some of the biggest and best iPhone and iPad games of 2013

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iOS gaming has come a long way. Just a few years ago the best you could hope for was a virtual pool simulator or Doodle Jump. But 2013 was an amazing year for iPhone and iPad games, with ports of top-notch console titles joining creative originals from indie developers. Join Gizmag, as we break down some of the top iPhone and iPad games of 2013.

Rayman Fiesta Run

The sequel to last year's excellent Rayman Jungle Run, Fiesta Run adds a food theme and even better level design. In the bloated world of endless runners, these two Rayman titles stand above the fray.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
US$2.99 (also offers in-app purchases)

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse

A remasted port of the 1990 Sega Genesis classic, Castle of Illusion is a fun throwback to the days when platformers ruled the world. It might also be the closest you'll get to a classic Mario game on iOS.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$9.99 (no in-app purchases)

The Room 2

Mobile games tend to work best when developers look for the advantages of touch screens, rather than just trying to approximate physical controls. The Room 2 follows its predecessor as a shining example of that, as you manipulate (virtual) physical objects to peel back layers of this mysterious puzzle.

App Store (iPad only)
$4.99 (no in-app purchases)

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas

This year Rockstar completed its iOS ports of the Grand Theft Auto III trilogy, releasing the fan favorite GTA: San Andreas to mobile devices. It's the closest a video game gets to putting you in a 1990s-era gangsta rap video, with a scope far beyond that of the other two PS2-era GTA games.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$6.99 (no in-app purchases)


Nintendo isn't likely to bring any Zelda games to iOS anytime soon, so FDG Entertainment took matters into its own hands. Much more than a Zelda knockoff, Oceanhorn is a loving tribute to Nintendo's franchise that stands on its own feet as one of the best mobile games of the year.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$8.99 (no in-app purchases)

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

What many consider to be the best Star Wars game ever made, KOTOR saw its first port to mobile devices this year, and it still holds up well ten years later.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$4.99 (no in-app purchases)

Deus Ex: The Fall

It may not be quite on par with its PC and console predecessor, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, but this mobile-only title manages to cram the series' cyberpunk setting and stealth/combat gameplay onto your iOS device.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
currently on sale for $0.99 (also offers in-app purchases)

Papa Sangre II

One of the most unique titles released this year, Papa Sangre II is an audio-based experience, narrated by Sean Bean. If there was ever a game to be played with headphones, this is it.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$4.99 (no in-app purchases)

Clumsy Ninja

The award for "Longest Delayed Game of the Year" goes to Clumsy Ninja. Originally previewed at the iPhone 5 event in September 2012, it's a physics-based Tamagotchi-style game. Only here your virtual pet is a ninja who can barely walk without tripping over his two left feet. That is, until you train him with the help of trampolines, watermelons, and basketball hoops.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
free (also offers in-app purchases)

Infinity Blade III

It may be trying a little too hard to expand the series' Mike Tyson's Punchout inspired gameplay into a AAA franchise, but the core experience of the third Infinity Blade title is still a ton of slash-and-dodge fun.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$2.99 (also offers in-app purchases)

Device 6

Giving Papa Sangre a run for the title of "most unique game of the year," Device 6 is a creative puzzler based on the written word.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$3.99 (no in-app purchases)

The Walking Dead: Season 2 (Episode 1)

Season One of Telltale's The Walking Dead won Gizmag's 2012 Game of the Year award, and episode one of its sequel gives you more harrowing decisions (which will affect your outcomes later in the game), as you now take on the role of young Clementine. You can expect more episodes that continue the story throughout 2014.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$4.99 (future episodes will be available as in-app purchases)

The Wolf Among Us (Episode 1)

Telltale's other big release of 2013 puts you in the shoes of Bigby Wolf, aka the Big Bad Wolf. Based on the Fables series of comic books, it puts a dark spin on familiar fairy tale characters, and also includes The Walking Dead-style decisions that can change plot details.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$4.99 (future episodes available as in-app purchases)

Ridiculous Fishing - A Tale of Redemption

One of the most fun arcade-style games of the year, Ridiculous Fishing lives up to its name. Drop your line, hook a fish (and a million other creepy-crawlies), then reel it up to the surface and blow its brains out. Ridiculous, indeed ... and an absolute blast.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$2.99 (no in-app purchases)

Angry Birds Star Wars 2

Rovio's Angry Birds may be growing a bit long in the tooth, but the core gameplay that made the series so much fun is still alive and kicking in the latest Star Wars-themed version. Here you play as bird and swine versions of characters from the prequel trilogy.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
free (also offers in-app purchases)

Plants vs. Zombies 2

We thought it lost a lot of the original's charm in the name of milking players for microtransactions, but Plants vs. Zombies 2 still gives you more of the original's winning tower defense gameplay formula.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
free (also offers in-app purchases)

XCOM: Enemy Unknown

XCOM: Enemy Unknown was on our list of 2012's best console/PC games, and this year it made its way to iOS. The alien invasion strategy game survives the transition with touch controls that are right at home on the iPad.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$19.99 (no in-app purchases)


This mysterious (and often gruesome) puzzler/platformer also made the jump from consoles this year. While dying in most games means failure, in Limbo it's a deliberate part of the trial-and-error puzzle-solving process.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$4.99 (no in-app purchases)

Cut the Rope 2

If you (or your child) liked the original Cut the Rope, then the sequel takes that same core puzzle gameplay, and expands it with new furry creatures joining the party.

App Store (iPhone/iPad universal)
$0.99 (also offers in-app purchases)

Any other great 2013 iOS games that we missed? Let everyone know in the comments.

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