Recently, we talked about the best offline games for Android. We are aware that the listed games were supported on both iOS and Android. In fact, we have yet to come across Android exclusive titles. So that opens a discussion about all the games that have come out on iOS that are playable offline. However, we recommend you check out our Android list after you’re done with this, it lists exceptional offline games that came out on iOS first and are definitely worth checking out. Here’s our list for the best offline games for iOS that are a one-time purchase.
1. Device 6
If you remember the choose your own adventure genre of books, Device 6 will seem familiar to you. Since page turning on a tablet is purely an affectation, the multiple award winning (including the coveted Apple Design Award) Device 6 takes it to the next conclusion. The game is a story about solving puzzles and finding your way through a series of choices. Some of those choices will lead to dead-ends and some of those choices will make the story progress.
Each new arc will either ask you to change your device’s orientation to read further, or will require you to scroll back to pick up sounds or other clues. There are no loading screens, no need for saves, it is a linear game with branching arcs. This is a must have for all iOS owners, even if they are not gamers, because it is a first of its kind genre defining game.
2. Tales of Monkey Island
This is the game that took Telltale series form an obscure developer to a mainstream medium for title crossovers. Even though their preliminary focus remains on comic and fantasy crossovers today, their biggest foray was bringing back Monkey Island for the modern generation. The episodic concept was not even mainstream at the time. Telltale told the story of Guybrush Threepwood attempting to save himself from becoming a Zombie while protecting his wife Elaine Marley from the zombie pirate LeChuck. The last sequel of this series came out in the year 2000. If you are not familiar with the property, it is a comedy game (and a hilarious one at that) that focuses on puzzle solving to get through. Highly recommended.
Download Tales of Monkey Island from the App Store ($2.99/episode – 5 total episodes)
3. Day of the Tentacle
This is one of those Tim Shafer strokes of genius. It originally came out on DOS back in 1993 as a sequel to Maniac Mansion that came out in 1987. In fact, you can even play the original game on an old computer. The remastered edition has breathed new life into what was already a timeless classic. The game is a comedy about a sentient tentacle who drinks radioactive water and becomes evil. Our main characters are a loony scientist who created the tentacle and three kids who end up in different eras in time.
You meet the founding fathers of the United States and you are thrust into a totalitarian future where the tentacles rule and humans are treated as pets. Day of The Tentacle is about restoring the timeline and order in the world. Every single puzzle is intriguing, the story is both engrossing and funny, and it is an experience every gamer needs to have at least once in their lives.
4. Year Walk
This first person adventure game comes from Simogo AB, the people behind Device 6. The game takes the Swedish lore of timewalking and turns it into the core mechanic. Set in the 19th century, the game relies on you to solve puzzles by touching them and seeing a glimpse of the future. The storyline is very immersive and you will be lost in all the creepy detail and atmosphere. The game, much like Device 6, is a bold step that seems to have paid off. It is a fantastic looking game that is both fun to play and immersive to experience.
5. Minecraft Pocket Edition
The success of Minecraft is extraordinary. With a constantly expanding canvas that has now grown larger in size than the planet Neptune, it attracts players from all over the world to build structures out of blocks. If you are not familiar with the property, it is like playing with LEGOs on a computer, with the caveat that you never run out of blocks and you can do practically anything you want. People have recreated entire cities accurately scaled to the last detail, people have created bots (called engineers) to help create large structures for them. Even companies like Verizon have created cell networks within the game, where you can browse the internet and even make video calls (which is a feat of computer engineering on its own, check that out here).
If you are interested in creating objects, then this THE game for you. The pocket edition lets you play the game using the touchscreen and gives you the same access as any other platform.
6. Heroes of Might and Magic III – HD Edition
This game originally came out in 1999 and has become a signature series since. Originally it was published by 3DO, now by Ubisoft (They’re up to the VII installment now). It is a turn based strategy game that puts you in the fictional world of fantasy creatures. You choose between mythical factions to strategically wage war against others. An army sent from the divine heavens could be put to fight against the armies of hell. Or you could pit orcs and goblins against elves and dragons. Genies vs Vampires, the list goes on.
The game is a turn-based strategy game. You send a hero out into the world to explore, fight creatures, unearth hidden and protected treasures, and defeat other heroes to become the last player standing. There is a fantastic story mode that takes you to all the realms in the game and a hot seat multiplayer mode that lets as many as 8 players take turns on the same machine. The HD remake keeps all the elements of the original release, only with updated visuals. The original game is played completely using a mouse pointer, which makes touch the ideal evolutionary platform for it.
7. The Escapists
You are a prisoner in a maximum security facility. Your mission is to escape. You do so by first learning the prison routine. You then craft items that will eventually help you find your way out of the prison. The concept is very simple, yet also very intriguing. It borrows numerous parts of different games like Minecraft and stealth games and combines them to help you escape from the confines of prison.
8. LEGO Games
The LEGO series of games is a widespread genre from simple construction games to complex storylines with mainstream characters. There are crossovers from DC, Marvel, Star Wars, Harry Potter, and numerous others. The games bring a new light to already established properties. There is a fantastic storyline exclusive to the LEGO World. You can replay your favourite moments from franchises like Harry Potter and Star Wars with a LEGO twist, you can patrol Metropolis as Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman or Green Lantern, it’s all possible. On top of all that, the games are genuinely fun without being silly. There is campy humor sprinkled here and there, but the games themselves are very true to the source material.
Download LEGO® Star Wars™: The Complete Saga from the App Store (Free to download, $6.99 in-app purchase for the full game with all parts)
Download LEGO® Star Wars™: The Force Awakens from the App Store (Free to download, $6.99 in-app purchase for the full unlock)
9. Oceanhorn – Monster of Uncharted Seas
Oceanhorn, by the developer’s own admission, is the iOS equivalent of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild the insanely popular title by Nintendo making the rounds on Nintendo Switch and Wii devices. However, Oceanhorn isn’t a cheap attempt at capitalizing on another title’s success, it is thematically close to The Wind Walker.
It is a beautifully crafted game with extremely stunning visuals that truly milk the GPU in your iOS device (especially the iPhone 7/7 Plus). The story is well crafted, the sound is well designed. It is actually a good game on its own merits and should definitely be tried out especially if you are a fan of the Zelda games.
10. After the End: Forsaken Destiny
This game will remind of you Lara Craft Go at first glance, because of the eerily similar visuals. However, if you treat it as a standalone title, you will be pleasantly surprised at just how good this game is. The game focuses on both visuals and some interesting puzzles to solve. Games like these are fun to play, as they can be played any time without requiring too much attention while still being entertaining.