Top 15 best idle games for iOS
Want to earn rewards even when you're not playing? Then these iOS idle games for iPhone and iPad are for you!
Updated on March 26, 2023 - swapped 1 game. Original article by Allison Van Oirschot, updated by Artur Novichenko.
Mobile games have had quite a history, and they haven’t even existed for 30 years yet. They’ve been around since 1994 when Tetris first dropped, and it’s amazingly still popular today. They have since exploded and there are over a billion on the market made by professionals and newcomers alike. And new titles keep getting added to the stores every year, especially idle games for iOS.
The first idler was supposedly Progress Quest, made by Eric Fredrickson 20 years ago in 2002. Since then, the market has become almost oversaturated with idle games for iOS of varying quality. Some are genuinely fun while others are just shameless cash grabs riddled with ads. It can be hard to tell what's worth your time and what to ignore completely.
We are going to explore some of the best picks you can play today on your iPhone or iPad, so grab a cup of tea, kick back and relax, because this list will reveal some of the titles that don't require much time invested and are great picks for someone with a tight schedule.
Though they are a dime a dozen nowadays, that doesn’t mean we won’t try to list the best. Here are our picks for the top 15 idle games for iOS.
Masketeers: Idle Has Fallen
Heroes in cute masks battle equally cute inner demon Wraiths in a fight against despair, anguish, fear, and anger. Match same-coloured orbs to power up the heroes and activate special attacks. Combine their powers and watch them attack all at once with the spirits of the animals on their masks. Find and equip different runes and other magical items to boost their power in battle. Hatch cute little Wisps to also help by increasing the abilities of your heroes. Though you can only have a team of four, there are eight characters to choose from.
First is Caine with a wolf mask of courage, Pixie with a mouse mask of wit, Coro with a deer mask of hope, and Falcon with a falcon mask of freedom. Next is Titan with a panda mask of determination, followed by Nightingale with a nightingale mask of kindness, Felina with a cat mask of perseverance, and King with a monkey mask of trust. Upgrade the masks to make them more powerful and last longer in fights.
Light a Way
An Editor’s Choice on Google Play, one little girl is all that stands against the forces of darkness, Umbra, consuming the light. Called the Guardian, use her Staff of Flare to bring back the light with the power of light. Cast spells on the creatures of darkness with the staff and different adorable and squishy Lumis, which attack enemies automatically. Collect the Lumis with a Lumi Lantern and level them up with Stardust. There are 30 kinds of Lumis, each with different abilities.
For example, a Seedling can cast Illumination, causing 45 points in damage, while an Apple casts Sweet Glow for 75 points in damage. The more they level up, the more powerful their attacks will be. Additionally, clothe the Guardian in different dresses to give her different buffs like extra Stardust drops. Some dresses are beautiful, like Cleopatra, while others are very odd, like the Sashimi Sushi.
Clicker Heroes is another interesting idle game developed by Playsaurus, an American studio. It was originally a browser title that had a few heroes and different types of mobs and bosses. Then the developers decided to move it from the browser to Steam and later adapt it to mobile devices, which was a good decision.
You need to click on the enemies that appear on the field to go further through the levels and collect money. There are quite a lot of different mobs and bosses currently. Clicker Heroes can also brag with a great number of levels. If you are looking for an idle game, it would be a perfect choice.
You control a high-tech underground vault and are in charge of keeping the dwellers happy. Build the necessities like bedrooms, kitchens, and medical facilities, along with amenities like hair salons and even bars. Get new dwellers through a radio room or play matchmaker to repopulate the old-fashioned way. Beyond keeping everyone happy, you’ll also need to protect the vault from outside and inside threats, including mole rats and radroaches. Sometimes you’ll even need to go outside the vault for quests to look for loot and other items. Be careful, out there be Deathclaws.
One of the more relaxing idle games for iOS, build an island and collect various penguins to populate and enjoy your hard work. Make a polar paradise with themes such as tropical, Egyptian, and many others. There’s no time limit and the sound of waves combined with calming music make for a very leisurely experience. Enjoy minigames and play dress-up with your penguins while they waddle around their island decorated with flowers, gazebos, fishing docks and more. A cute little game with cute little penguins; what’s not to like about that?
Ever thought about raising a kaiju? Well in Run Godzilla, you can! Gather villagers to pray and make Godzilla and co. grow stronger. To get villagers, however, you need diamonds. Make diamonds in your factory to summon multiple villagers but be careful, the factory releases CO2 which causes them not to stay for too long. Collect apples from the village to help villagers stay longer. Pray to Godzilla and other kaiju to win Godzilla Races and earn apples. It’s a weird game, but at least it’s entertaining.
Dungeon, Inc.: Idle Clicker
As Dungeon, Inc.’s Gold Production Manager, it’s your job to make as much profit as possible by any means necessary. Expand the dungeon and recruit monsters to help you find gold and defend your operation from pesky knights. When you’re done with a dungeon, cause an accident to cash in on the insurance and start all over again. Monsters include slimes, ogres, dragons, and more. How deep can your dungeon go?
Apparently, the egg industry is a lucrative business. Build hen houses and hatch hundreds of chickens to collect even more eggs and rake in the dough. Hire drivers to deliver eggs and use the money to fund research into making your chicken farm run more efficiently. With hundreds of challenges and dozens of research items, there’s nothing stopping you from turning your business into an empire. If you’re lucky, you might even unlock the secrets of the universe.
A Dark Room
A minimalist text adventure praised by many, your adventure begins when you wake in a cold, dark room. Choose what happens next and watch as the world around you grows and becomes more complex. Build a village with huts, a trading post and more to accommodate various travelers. The more people in your village, the more materials can be collected, like wood, meat, and fur. Deal with unexpected situations such as creature attacks and try to keep your village thriving for as long as possible.
Everyone knows about AFK Arena by now, it’d be surprising to find anyone who hasn't. Beautiful artwork, incredible characters and exciting gameplay make it one of the best idle games on the iOS market. With over 100 heroes and seven factions, use several different formations to defeat the evil Hypogeans. Play other minigames and collect all kinds of rewards to upgrade your heroes and blaze through levels.
Don't be shy and use the tier list for AFK Arena that we have, and if you're new to the game, you should definitely take a look at the AFK Arena codes and claim some rich rewards for a better headstart!
From a humble lemonade stand to essentially taking over the world, this is one of the most popular iPhone idle games on market. With over 50 million installs across all platforms, it has been hailed as the best idle game ever. Tap to earn money and hire various managers to tap for you and earn even more money while you’re away. Buy special suits to earn unique rewards and keep climbing to the top of the corporate ladder. Control all the business, control the world.
Become the most profitable and deadly mafia gang by stealing money and building illicit businesses in several different cities. Collect uniquely dangerous employees to muscle your way into other territories and take them over. Assign them to businesses like casinos and gentlemen’s clubs to rake in the cash. Use the money to upgrade your businesses to earn even more along with your employees. Defend your turf from wannabe usurpers and become the toughest and richest mafia gang around.
RAID: Shadow Legends
The next game on the list is probably one of the most played RPGs for mobile devices. It is a title with a turn-based combat system and incredible graphics. It mostly revolves around building your team with the right characters and countering your enemies. Of course, this sounds much easier than it actually is, there are thousands of combinations with different gear that you can equip. You will have to face many dangerous bosses and even fight with other players in the PVP arena, which is a real delight. Currently, there are 300+ characters, therefore, we have created a RAID: Shadow Legends tier list to help you choose the most powerful champions.
Idle Miner Tycoon
Mine for gold and build a successful empire. Hire other miners to dig multiple tunnels and get managers to automate them while you’re away. With seven continents and 33 different mines to dig, there are just so many resources out there to find. Play alone or go on adventures with friends to unlock new content. Earn collectables and complete quests to make even more money and expand your mining empire.
Idle Police Tycoon
Ever wanted to run your own police station? Well, now you can! Start small and gradually grow your precinct to help more people and catch more criminals. Upgrade buildings, add more vehicles, provide quality materials for your employees and more. Imprison special criminals for big rewards like extra spending money and many others. Once your original station has everything it needs, move on to another city and start over. Crime waits for no one.
With this one, we are closing the list of the best idle games for iOS. Share your favourites in the comments below!