Mobile Gaming: Android or iOS?
In recent years, mobile gaming has become huge. With increased availability of smartphones and tablets and technological advances giving them the capability to run more powerful software, downloadable apps of all sorts have entered the market.
The two biggest mobile platforms now are Android, from Google, and iOS, from Apple. Most people will pick one or the other based on the devices they want to use, but mobile gamer might be more interested in the apps available. When it comes to the mobile games market, then, should you pick Android or iOS?
Both stores are fairly easy to browse. The App Store subdivides its “Games” section into 18 different genres, and the Google Play Store lists 17 genres under “Games.” The genres are largely the same, except that the App Store has categories for “Dice” and “Family,” while the Google Play Store includes “Casual.”
Despite having one less category, as of July 2015, reports showed more apps available from the Google Play Store, with 1.6 million apps, than from the Apple App Store, which had 1.5 million apps. Of course, while there is a greater quantity for Android, these numbers do not indicate their quality—and many might not be games.
As with comparing video game consoles, one of the best techniques is to take a look at their exclusives. After all, many mobile games are made for both Android and iOS devices. If those are the games you’re interested in, it won’t matter as much which market you use. However, if one operating system has exclusive games you want, it could be a deciding factor in your purchase.
Since there are so many apps available, it’s difficult to find statistics about the number of exclusives, let alone a list. However, here are a few we found.
Notably, the Infinity Blade trilogy can only be played on iOS devices. These three story-driven action RPGs received excellent reviews and might be one of the biggest draws for RPG fans. Other exclusives include Bomberman spin-offs, the highly-praised text adventure game Device 6, and the Namco Arcade collection.
As a counter to Infinity Blade, let’s look at Tales of Illyria, playable only on Android devices. This turn-based RPG series (unrelated to the “Tales of” series) recently saw the release of its third entry and has received great reviews from RPG fans. Other exclusives include Sony’s puzzle game Experiment 13, the 3D space shooter Silpheed Alternative: Menace From Beyond the Stars, and the turn-based strategy game Age of Civilizations.
Android exclusives may seem rarer, but they do exist. Does the higher number of iOS exclusives make it the better choice for mobile gamers, or are Android’s exclusive higher-quality? Android or iOS? Share your thoughts (and favorite exclusives) in the comments.
Article by Samantha Lienhard