Top 10 best Android games of August 2012

Not Samsung's summer

Top 10 best Android games of August 2012

Something terrible happened in the world of Android last month, and, no, we aren't referring to spiralling IAP costs.

August was, in fact, the month in which Apple's drawn-out legal battle with Samsung ended abruptly and devastatingly for the latter.

In the end, the South Korean tech giant was issued with a $1 billion fine by a California court for infringing patents such as 'tap to zoom' and 'pinch to zoom'.

The impact on Android as a whole won't be felt for a while, however, so we suggest you pig out on our hand-picked selection of August's best games and hope it all blows over.

Organ Trail: Director's Cut
By The Men Who Wear Many Hats - buy on Android

One of the first Kickstarter-funded titles for mobile, Organ Trail: Director's Cut deserves to be a poster boy for crowdsourced gaming.

Bagging a rare Pocket Gamer Gold Award from the harshest of critics (me), this zombie apocalypse-themed remake of American education title The Oregon Trail is infused with dread, desperation, and a generous dash of pitch-black humour.

Greedy Spiders 2
By Blyts - buy on Android

As maddeningly difficult as it is desperately cute, Blyts's superior sequel to last year's Greedy Spiders boasts more than 140 of the toughest puzzles you'll see this year.

Like in the original, you snip away at a complex spider web to save trapped flies from the titular arachnids scuttling incessantly towards them.

Greedy Spiders 2 is as much a turn-based strategy title as a puzzler: every move you make needs to be meticulously planned if you have any designs on outthinking the smart spider AI.

By Kairosoft - buy on Android

Ever wondered what would materialise if you combined the planet hopping of Star Trek with the cutesy, yet deeply refined, micromanagement of a classic Kairosoft game?

Well, Kairobotica is pretty much the answer.

In Kairobotica, you play the captain of a spaceship tasked with soaring through space, patrolling planets, and - for the first time - engaging in straightforward turn-based battles.

Gears & Guts
By Glu Mobile - download free on Android

It may be a little too pricey freemium-wise to play through the whole campaign, but even cash-strapped players will get a solid hour or two of zombie carnage out of Glu's game without dropping a dime.

A top-down driver / shooter, Gears & Guts is a gore-soaked corker. You tear around an open city that's overrun with hordes of undead monsters in a vehicle that can be souped up with chainsaws on the sides and a rocket launcher on top.

Z Origins
By Kavcom - buy on Android

One of the legendary Bitmap Brothers's lesser known titles, Z might be nearly 20 years old, yet its robust, frantic approach to real-time strategy still feels fresh in this near-flawless port.

Across a generous 20-mission campaign, your goal is to use your tiny Red troops to gather key zones across the map that contain factories. You can then produce vehicles and extra troops with which to rush the Blue enemy base.

Tavern Quest
By Glu Mobile - download free on Android

If you're running a pub restaurant and you're a big purple monster, your food and booze had better be up to scratch - lest potential customers run screaming for the door.

That's the premise behind Tavern Quest, Glu Mobile's Kairosoft-flavoured restaurant sim. In it, you are tasked with cooking up dishes, such as a mean Ogre Eye Pie, to lure in customers and use your income to gradually expand your watering hole.

Max Payne Mobile
By Rockstar Games - buy on Android

After making its debut on Tegra 3-powered devices in the form of a glorious-looking port, the original Max Payne has now been enhanced for the Xperia Play.

Thanks to the device's slide-out control pad, you can actually shoot with accuracy and without risk of thumb ache.

The bullet time action and noir-heavy style have survived the transition to lower-powered hardware, though you do have to put with a few framerate jitters.

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light
By Square Enix - buy on Android

Unless you played it via OnLive, this Xperia Play-optimised version marks the first time Android gamers have had the chance to experience Lara's most arcade-like adventure yet.

The Guardian of Light is a solid conversion of the iOS port of the console original (yep, confuses me, too), and the physical controls really make a difference to the twin-stick shooter-style gameplay.

You get a lengthy, polished action-adventure for your money, too. Hopefully, non-Xperia 'droid devices will also get to experience it soon.

Call of Duty: Black Ops Zombies
By Glu Mobile - buy on Android

The sharply rendered undead slaughter of Dead Trigger might have stolen some of its thunder, but this belated Android port still offers one of the most robust FPS experiences on mobile.

In this stripped-down version of the zombie-infected console multiplayer mode from Call of Duty: Black Ops, you and up to three chums have to fend off wave after wave of increasingly tough enemies, upgrading your weapons and patching up holes in your defences.

Dark Gate
By Kemco Games - buy on Android

The death of the Japanese RPG might have been predicted long ago on the home consoles, yet this relatively niche genre is thriving on mobile devices.

Dark Gate looks and plays like 16-bit classics such as Secret of Mana and Chrono Trigger, with its 2D graphics bursting with charm.

Combat is blissfully brisk, there are stacks of character customisations to master, and the Xperia Play optimisations make navigating the many menus a breeze.

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