Android Action games have evolved with the platform. Gone are the days when every action title was a rough copy of a popular console game; there are legitimate spin-offs that add to venerable franchises, in addition to entirely unique creations that take full advantage of the mobile medium.
Some are better than others, and painful biting of existing franchises still exists. Luckily, we here at Hardcore Droid combed through the Google Play store to find the 10 best Android Action games out there.
10. Hitman Sniper
Hanging onto its high rankings, people love this spin off of the console game that has since spawned several sequels and a movie. Hitman is crashing a house party, and he’s going snipe happy. There are a ton of missions packed into the area.
The intricacies and humor behind some of the missions and Easter eggs makes this a winner, especially for Hitman fans, but it does suffer from annoying in-game purchase prompts at some points. Overall, the satisfaction of the positives and sweet headshots among the dense level overwhelm the small niggles. It is an infamous game deserving of a download and its place in the top 10.
Another oldie but goodie, years ago when it was made clear there would never be an Android port of Infinity Blade, a great cry went up to the heavens. Developers responded with Blood and Glory, an analogue of Infinity for that other mobile OS set in a Roman colosseum rather than a medieval arena. Expend experience points earned from battles on stat boosts; silver earned can be spent on equipment. It’s a solid level up experience with shiny Unreal graphics.
As it’s free to play, there is a certain strategy to avoid the freemium trap: there is no energy or currency needed to continue playing, but you do need health to complete the tournaments that progress toward the final fight. Perform poorly in the first battle of a tournament, and you can buy a health potion with real money, or restart the fight. Or, players can opt to be cautious when facing their inevitably larger and more aggressive opponent – aka play well and live.
Deadzone does not waste time. Unlike premium online shooters ala Destiny 2, there is no story mode. It’s a PvP shooter, plain and simple. It takes the slick graphics of a console and mixes in familiar duck and cover mechanics with a solid upgrade scheme and tells players to dive right in.
Considering it’s basically a free console experience with controller support and it’s not even a large download, there’s no harm in giving Shadowgun Deadzone a try while you wait for Shadowgun Legends, the next in the series to come out. Considering how good it looks and how smoothly it plays, its obvious why it deserves its spot in the top ten and on your android phone.
As creepy and blood-pumping as the original, which we consider one of the best android action games of all time. Into the Dead sends players running through a zombie outbreak, dodging the undead and conserving ammo to survive. Guns are leveled by collecting cards – an expected but functional aspect to this “free to play” game, which also includes annoying pop-ups for powerful weapons in exchange for real world money. Luckily there’s no online mode so saving up cards and in-game currency doesn’t put the player at a disadvantage against others. Beating challenges per level grants higher ranking and rewards, so it has great replay value in thrilling digestible pieces – an ideal aspect to a mobile game.
That said there are three modes, Story, where you play a man trying to rescue his wife and daughter, Daily challenge and Survival mode. Story missions have a set distance that you need to reach, the other two modes are endless, meaning you run until you inevitably get caught and dismembered. If you like running for your life and blasting zombies, this is perhaps the prettiest and sharpest run and gun zombie shooting game on Android.
The makers of Angry Birds brings us this adorable boat-battle PvP title. You battle the opponents of your 5 member team as much as you battle the dynamic waves of the bay that can and does throw off your aim.
Battle Bay’s boat leveling system makes it stand out beyond its cute and crisp graphics and insane waterway. Instead of leveling up your boat, you level your crew members, enabling players to tailor which skills they’ll have available in battle to their play style. It’s a great android action game for blowing up others, complete with guilds where you can revel in your triumphs with fellow players.
There has since been a third iteration in the series that originated as a Facebook game, but this is the last version that doesn’t allow freemium greed to overwhelm the gameplay. You take on the role of a fighter that is a shadow of his former self. The game is very easy on the eyes, showcasing beautiful backgrounds and smooth animations.
The gameplay itself relies more on timing than button mashing. Unfortunately, the game suffers from a case of freemium greed unless players spring for the Special Edition. Either use real money to buy premium currency, or watch 30 second videos to keep playing. It’s a better deal to drop the dough and buy the game outright, because it’s pretty sweet. The title’s story mode, arena mode, and timed matches, as well as character and equipment upgrades give things variety. If players can avoid the freemium trap via replays or skill, it’s a uniquely artistic take on Fighting games and perfectly done for mobile—grab it.
Some great android action games don’t rely on button mashing, and Space Marshals is one of those. Players take on the role of a Space Marshall, of all things, in a weird wild west. Building on the success of the first Space Marshalls, players can now use stealth kills to shoot down escaped criminals that might otherwise kill the Marshall in a few shots.
Performance determines the quality of the mission rewards, so even though there’s plenty of armor pickups and save points it’s better to stay alive and it’s the best incentive to keep playing. It’s challenging, good looking, perfectly parsed for mobile, and all-around top game. Get while the getting’s good!
Banking off the success of the television series, Mixels Rush lets players combine Mixels, the titular game characters, to form special attacks to progress through side-scrolling levels and defeat the infamous Nixels. It’s adorable, and no doubt has a preexisting fan base thanks to the show.
At the time of this writing it’s listed as one of the top paid games, but it’s free. Nor does the game try to gouge players with microtransactions. Yes, there are ads, but they are no worse than the ads in the medium that first brought us Mixels – TV. If you like platforming and combat with a little bit of weird puzzling that steps outside the oddly shaped box, Mixels Rush is the best thing since mashed potatoes.
Often survival games fall into the RPG or strategy categories, but Last Day on Earth: Survival falls into the action category in the Google Store. There is a decided RPG style to it, you select a space on a world map, and the view winnows down to a third person angled aerial perspective that allows you to control your character with a virtual joystick on the left and interaction buttons on the right.
Once watching your character from a third person view, the game requires action to defeat roaming enemies, to chat with friendly characters, or build whatever you need to survive. It’s a large, well-designed survival game in which players can eschew the proffered in game purchases for legitimate challenge. Plus it automatically collects the slew of resources you need to build things in game. The player can even interact with other players to gain valuable information. Last Day on Earth: Survival is one of the best Android survival games out, hands-down.
Oddworld Inhabitants Inc.
Oddworld New n Tasty is a thoughtful remake of the PS4 game, with updated graphics and gameplay in addition to the required tweaks to the control scheme. The platforming aspects are still hard, but not as frustrating as earlier iterations. In previous games, other Mudokons followed blindly, but this time around keeping them alive is a little easier since you can give them simple commands like sneak.
Google Play Games support includes cloud saves, achievements and leaderboards for New n Tasty so this gorgeous puzzle-platformer feels and plays like a console game you can easily slip in your pocket. It costs more than a dollar or two, but considering the old, non-portable version with less polish once sold for more than $20 and there are no in-app purchases or ads, Android gamers are getting a deal on one of the premier 90’s gaming experiences. Mirror it to your TV and add a controller for some truly hardcore gaming.