TSA Game Of The Year 2013 – Mobile Game

Mobile gaming has been mainstream for a while now. From iPads and iPhones to Windows Tablets and Galaxy Notes, we’re surrounded by tech loaded with potential gaming goodness. Goodness which has, in the past two or three years, been tapped into by big-name publishers and independent studios alike.

Out of all the categories in our Game of the Year round-up, this was perhaps one of the hardest to nail down. “Throwaway” sounds like such a dirty word though it sums up the majority of mobile games out there; though we enjoy them – and even become obsessed with them at times – many of us simply move from one to the next in rapid succession. Nailing down our favourites, therefore, was no easy task.

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Anyone who has laid fingers on an mobile or tablet has likely come across Rovio’s avian catapult simulator. With millions of downloads across the globe, Angry Birds has propelled its way into the gaming hall of fame, spawning its own TV series in the process. Angry Bird Star Wars II builds upon the original experience with its own sci-fi take, introducing new character types and challenges that become increasing more difficult.

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Device 6, on the other, is a new contender. Developed by Simogo (Year Walk) the game combines a written thriller with various interactive elements enabled via touchscreen. Like Year Walk, it’s a truly unique experience and one that requires audio to get the full effect.

Hot on their heels we have Rayman Fiesta Run. No surprise really, considering our ongoing love for Ubisoft’s armless mascot. Fiesta Run is basically a redux version of recently-updated Rayman template. Players are dragged through vibrant, hand-drawn gauntlets, each with its own quirky hazards. Wall run, leap over obstacles, and collect lums to advance. Though some will no doubt have preferred a Rayman Legends port, Fiesta provides a fast-paced alternative, loaded with character and charm.

There are also plenty of runners up. Just missing out on a podium spot is PopCap’s Plants vs Zombies 2 followed by slick racing sim, Real Racing 3. Other, more obscure, titles also made the list, including Rymdkapsel and the quirky Tiny Thief. Alongside these were returning power players, Temple Run 2 and Infinity Blade III.

If anything, this year’s mobile award highlights just how diverse the medium of touch-screen gaming is. Once seen as a bastion for five-minute sprints of gameplay, the iOS and Android market is now home to some of the best gaming experiences around, whether they be sequels, ports, or those truly unique, genre-agnostic masterpieces.

Angry Birds Star Wars II and Device 6 are TheSixthAxis’ joint winners of Mobile Game of the Year 2013.

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11 Comments

  1. There is really only one Mobile game for me, Motoheroz. It’s really the only game I play on my iphone. I’ll be sticking it right on my Moto G when I get it later today.

  2. God I hate Angry Birds.

    I can only assume more people didn’t play Tiny Thief, it got my vote – really fun and well presented game.

    I have not been drawn back to PvZ2 due to all the grinding. A real shame as I love the game generally. Hopefully it’ll come to Vita at some point…some trophies could persuade me to put up with the grinding.

    • I enjoyed Tiny Thief for quite a while but at some point it turned into a drag for me. I voted for Rayman Fiesta Run.

    • I had the same issue with PvZ – gets too repetitive due to grinding. I did notice a recent update which included something related to grinding. Perhaps its been fixed now. I should probably check it out.

  3. of the games on the list, that i’ve played, i went for Rymdkapsel.
    i completed the research all four monuments mission, and i was a few minutes short, or long, of the the research all four in 45 minutes mission.
    i haven’t even got close to lasting for 28 waves.

    if i was given a free choice of games though, i would have chosen The Blockheads.
    essentially it’s like Terraria, but it gets around the issue of fiddly touch screen controls by taking direct control of your little blockhead away from you.
    you just give them orders by tapping on blocks, tap a dirt block to mine it.
    tap a tree to cut it down.
    tap a tool box to make tools.
    you can keep tapping to set up a queue of actions for your blockhead to perform and then you can watch them carry out your orders.

    there’s less emphasis on combat than Terraria due to not having direct control, and your blockhead cannot actually die, at least i’ve not found any way to kill them. >_>
    there are sharks in the seas and these things called drop bears that live in tall trees and attack, but they can’t kill you, a severely injured blockhead will just act a lot slower than a healthy one.

  4. Temple Run didn’t appeal to me but i was astounded watching my three year old nephew blaze through it so casually – like the way i might tie my shoelaces with barely a glance. That was the moment i realised what a profound change in accessibility touch controls had brought to technology.
    But i’m still not hugely sold on mobile gaming personally, in fact Peggle is the only mobile game i’ve ever bought.

  5. You left the highest rated mobile game of the year out of the nominations, which I find perplexing to say the least.

    Why no love for the absolutely terrifying Papa Sangre II? A game with no graphics (purely builds the world through sound) and narrated by a terrifying Sean Bean…

    A must play.

    Of the nominated games, the only two I actually bothered to launch more than once were Rayman and Device 6. Device 6 is definitely the best of the games listed, but Papa Sangre II was by far the most impressive mobile game I played this year, probably my favourite Indie game too.

    • We never played it. We only included things we knew about it – I had honestly never heard of this until your comment :(

      • Oh well then.

        Time for you to fix that at least! Go play it! They’ve another one narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch as well, it’s good too.

  6. I voted for Rayman, although my mobile GotY would be either Construction City or GT Racing 2. Both have kept me occupied though many lectures and both are free! Construction City is especially good, simple yet very addictive and they keep adding extra levels. GT Racing 2 is also good, it’s just a shame that everything tempts you spend money on it.

  7. rymdkapsel is just fantastic

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