Why mobile games are so popular

We heart mobile games

Have you ever thought why we play mobile games or why they are so popular? You can list so many reasons why we play games on consoles and PC, and so many debates start about which is better. As that discussion heats up, more and more games are making their way to AppStore and GooglePlay. Big name third party publishers and developers are dedicating more resources to their growing selection of mobiles. Even classic games are making a comeback on your tablets and phones--and guess what, people are buying.

Theres something about the mobile market that keeps it strong, and we have a few reasons why we think its so popular. If you play on a tablet or phone, consider yourself a mobiler. You may already know why youre addicted to your games, but lets see if we hit the mark...


Perhaps one of the easiest reasons mobile games are so popular is because theyre easily accessible. Practically everyone has a smartphone nowadays, so anyone from your grandma to your little cousin can download a game on his or her iPhone and start gaming right away. Even adults, who wouldnt even consider themselves gamers, are drawn in by the addictive nature of games like Words with Friends and Candy Crush. Downloading games is also pretty painless, and can be done all in a matter of seconds. When you compare that to going to the store to buy a game for your Xbox, its a no-brainer mobile games are more consumer-friendly.

To add to all the happy people, mobile games are portable right out of their nonexistent box and can be enjoyed pretty much anywhere. Whether youre waiting for a bus or want to make that trip to the toilet a little more fun (trust me, people play on the can), games like Angry Birds or Hero Academy are there to the rescue. Of course, if you use your phone for more than just gaming, you may need to invest in an extra battery for when, you know, you need to actually make calls.

Mobile-friendly gaming

Catering to the mobile market, developers are making games that can be played on the go, so they dont take up much of your time. This, of course, leads to games that dont offer a lot of depth but are still very fun because of their pick-up-and-play design. Games like Cut the Rope, for instance, feature short levels that can be completed in a matter of seconds. You can always go back and get every star in each level when you get home, but if youre in a rush, this compact, mobile-friendly format makes enjoying them a breeze.

Even the bigger, more robust games allow you to save your progress on the fly. You dont have to worry about losing your progress either as most games stay open in the background even if you dont play them for a while. Whats more, a lot of these games have easy controls even the ones that have appeared on other platforms before. Which brings me to my next topic

Console-quality titles

Mobile games are known for their creative IPs, but every now and then we get to play games that have appeared on other consoles. Did you check out all those Nintendo games now available on iOS and Android? How about the list of mobile games coming in 2014? In addition to giving us classic games on our phones and tablets, developers are also taking the time to release mobile games simultaneously with their PC and console versions. This means well soon be able to play console-quality games on the go as well.

And for all those out there that believe playing on a touchscreen device isnt the same as playing with a controller, just hold on for a little while longer until more mobile-friendly controllers start popping up everywhere. A virtual joystick may not be the most ideal way to play Limbo or Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, but even if you decide to forego one of these pricey accessories, mobile ports give you plenty of control options that let you play former console-only games for cheap. And who doesnt love to save money?

Cheap and free games

Mobile games are known for being cheap--so much, in fact, that if a game costs $8 or more, most people will complain that its too expensive. This type of thinking makes it seem like all mobile games arent supposed be anything more than just quickies. A lot of them are, but a lot are also robust titles well worth your money. When you look back at 2013 and see all the great games that came out for iOS and Android, a number of those games could easily stand toe to toe with titles released on consoles. Why? Because they may be cheap, but theyre not any less good.

A huge chunk of all the games available on the AppStore and Google Play are free-to-play. Of course, this means youll find games that are riddled with ridiculously pricey in-app purchases or annoying ads to skip through, but just like the commercials in between your favorite shows, youre not forced to buy anything if you dont want to. The great thing about these games, especially endless runners, for example, is that you unlock things the more you play. You dont have to spend a dime if youre smart enough, and if the game is fun--which often it is--you can unlock everything on your own.

They're fun

I remember playing Brick back in the day on my old clamshell cell phone and thinking how cool it was that my phone was trying to do the same thing my Game Boy could easily do. Mobile games have a long way since then, but like any game on any platform, theyre made to keep us having fun. The market isn't just saturated with free shovelware, mobile games can also be pretty creative and continue to keep us coming back for more. From RPGs to MMOs to racing games to simulators, theres an endless amount of games available on the mobile market that anyone can enjoy.

Apple recently announced that 2013 AppStore sales topped $10 billion on the App Store. It named games like Candy Crush Saga, Puzzle & Dragons and Minecraft as some of the year's biggest successes. Google Play is no slouch, either. Android's advantage is that multiple companies are making devices specifically tailored to different users, so a lot more people can gain access to a lot more apps and games. People like their games, and numbers dont lie. At the end of the day, it all comes down to how much fun you have with your phone or tablet. If a game isnt enjoyable, people arent going to want to play it. It just so happens that theyre getting a lot more impressive too. But thats why mobile games are doing so well.

Are you a mobiler?

What makes you pick up your smartphone and treat it like a gaming device? Is it the cheap games, the fact that you can play old favorites, or simply because you can't tell the difference between a handheld and a mobile game. Let us know why you think mobile games are so popular or if you just prefer to use your phone as a phone instead.

And if you're looking for some reasons why the mobile scene is so popular, be sure to check out the best mobile games released in 2013.