The Best Apple Arcade Games in 2024 – Ridiculous Fishing EX, Fantasian, Grindstone, Taiko, and More – TouchArcade

Last year, Shaun wrote about the best Apple Arcade games for 2023, but given how the service has been over the years, some games have been updated, others have left the service, and we’ve also had new additions. A lot has changed over the years, and I still can’t believe Apple Arcade is more than a few years old today. If you’re new to Apple Arcade or are thinking of subscribing soon, I hope this article helps you find something you like. All the games featured here are worth your time, and while some of them are available on other platforms, they are still worth trying on iPhone and iPad. This best Apple Arcade games list is in no particular order, and I am not including “+” games since those are also available on the App Store separately. Let’s get into the games now.


FANTASIAN,

Fantasian isn’t going to be for everyone, but it is certainly a powerful monument to what possibilities Apple Arcade held. A full-on proper RPG from the creator of Final Fantasy, packed with gorgeous sights and challenging battles, Fantasian was so big it had to be delivered in two parts. Composer Nobuo Uematsu did his magic with a very unusual but cool soundtrack, and the presence of a number of Final Fantasy veterans could be felt all throughout the gameplay systems. Handily the best RPG on Apple Arcade, and one of the finest original mobile games in the genre. -Shaun Musgrave


Hello Kitty Island Adventure,

While Apple Arcade now feels like it brings in more “+” games rather than bespoke exclusives, we still get those once in a while. Hello Kitty Island Advenutre from Sunblink is easily one of the best newer releases on the service. While originally expected to be just a take on Animal Crossing, Hello Kitty Island Adventure is so much more, and it keeps getting regular updates to make things fresh for players. Hello Kitty Island Adventure is one of the best reasons to stay subscribed to Apple Arcade right now.


Ridiculous Fishing EX,

Sure, Ridiculous Fishing EX just came out, but I’m more than comfortable putting it on this list. The original Ridiculous Fishing was already one of the best mobile games ever, and this remade and juiced up release just piles more goodies on top. It’s always nice to see games that understand the strengths of a platform and the ways its users like to play on it, and Ridiculous Fishing EX completely gets it as far as mobile is concerned. You’ll probably burn through the main story quickly, but this EX game has plenty more for you to enjoy after that. -Shaun Musgrave


Sneaky Sasquatch,

Sneaky Sasquatch was a somewhat thin game when it launched, but this is a fine example of just how much a game can grow over time. The developer must be bonkers here, because there has been a constant stream of cool new stuff hitting this game. At its core, this is a game about the titular sasquatch and his daily life. At first he was just sneaking around swiping food, but now he does everything from taxi driving to politics. If you like open-ended life sim style games, give this one a shot. Its scope is positively admirable. -Shaun Musgrave


Mini Motorways,

As a big fan of Mini Metro, I was extremely excited to see a follow-up arrive in the form of Mini Motorways. Would it be able to maintain the same appeal despite the shift in theme? Could it be different enough to justify its existence? Would it hook me the way its predecessor did? The answer to all of those questions is an emphatic yes. A terrific fast-paced puzzle game that sees you trying to run roads all over the map until everything gets way out of hand, Mini Motorways is tense and fun in all the right ways. It looks and sounds great, too. -Shaun Musgrave


Pocket Card Jockey: Ride On!,

The people at Game Freak aren’t just about Pokemon, and if you need proof of that then look no further than Pocket Card Jockey: Ride On!, a unique hybrid of solitaire and horse racing. It isn’t something that should work at all, but it’s somehow completely sublime. Pick your horse, train them up, and then play solitaire during the races to push them to victory. Use some special skills at the right moment and you can turn the tides of any race. Cute, clever, and hard to put down, Pocket Card Jockey is a great way to spend a lazy afternoon or wait in a line-up alike. -Shaun Musgrave


WHAT THE GOLF?,

I kept flip flopping on whether I wanted to include What The Golf? or What The Car? here. I decided to go with the former as I’ve played that a lot more. Both games are excellent additions to the service, but What The Golf? is the better overall package. If you do get Apple Arcade, play them both so consider this list entry as me cheating with two games instead of one. What The Golf? has humor, great levels, fun gameplay, and tons of quality content. It is worth your time even if you have no interest in golf.


Sayonara Wild Hearts,

Some of the best mobile games are the ones that offer up fairly simple mechanics with a strong narrative, and dress it all up in some of the most stylish sights and sounds a screen can deliver. Sayonara Wild Hearts is one of those games. It’s a rhythm game, but between its dazzling visuals, amazing soundtrack, and confident story-telling, it’s quite unlike any game in that genre you’ve likely played. Developer Simogo and publisher Annapurna Interactive individually have an amazing track record on mobile, and this collaboration easily lives up to the reputations of both. -Shaun Musgrave


Taiko no Tatsujin Pop Tap Beat,

If you want a more standard rhythm game experience, you can’t go wrong with Bandai Namco’s Taiko no Tatsujin Pop Tap Beat. Tap your fingers to the beat of a list of songs that includes everything from the Indiana Jones Theme to the Sesame Street song. It’s always getting new tracks added across a variety of genres, and while there are bound to be a lot of songs you don’t know here, they’re all worth playing. A great version of a genre classic, this has been one of my quiet favorites of the Apple Arcade line-up since the minute it was added. -Shaun Musgrave


Grindstone,

If there’s a poster child for Apple Arcade originals, Grindstone just might be the best choice. This is a terrific puzzler packed with things to do, the sort that normally cajoles you to buy IAP or watch ads on mobile. Yet here, the game is blissfully free of such things, allowing you to enjoy the pleasures of the matching puzzler genre in a very pure form. It’s enjoyable to play and has charm to burn, making it a perfect fit for those little pockets of time you need to fill. -Shaun Musgrave

There you have it. I know Apple Arcade right now feels very different to how things were in the first two or three years, but there are still many excellent games on the service. Hopefully you find something you like if you do end up subscribing to the service in the near future. If you think I should’ve included something that you like a lot, please let me know in the comments below. As usual, thanks for reading.

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