The Best Retro Games You Can Play On Your Smartphone

With gaming becoming more and more popular every day, the number of new titles being released continues to grow. Many of these fresh creations push the boundaries of what is possible, either by having enhanced graphics, more realistic physics, greater openness, or larger multiplayer functionality.

Other times, developers create entirely new concepts and formats, such as the now-popular battle royale genre that was first pioneered by PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.

Despite this inundation of newness, there is an unwavering demand for retro content among gamers. Whether it be for the purposes of reminiscing, a preference for single-player content, or to appreciate content someone was unable to fully grasp when it was first released, classic games continue to be popular.

Thanks to the advancement of mobile technology, many of these retro games can now be enjoyed on smartphones and tablets, relatively inexpensive devices that most of us already own. This means many retro gamers can forego the need to buy expensive consoles or computers to enjoy the titanic titles of times gone by.

Not only that but because computing technology has evolved so much, these tiny portable devices are capable of running many games that once needed high-end hardware. This means retro gamers of today can enjoy some truly epic titles from practically anywhere in the world. Here are some of the best options.

Grand Theft Auto Trilogy

Grand Theft Auto is, by far, one of the most successful video game franchises of all time. This is despite the fact that Rockstar Games has produced far fewer titles in its flagship series than most other publishers. Sure, there have been plenty of releases bearing its name, but the discography of GTA is just a fraction of games like Call of Duty and FIFA.

Depending on your definition of a retro game, Rockstar’s latest installment of GTA could now be categorized as a retro title because it will turn 10 years old later this year. But, sadly, Grand Theft Auto V is not currently available for smartphones; however, the three PlayStation 2-era titles are.

For just the cost of a few coffees, you can enjoy GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas, as well as the prequel title Liberty City Stories. They’re all optimized for touchscreens and have upgraded graphics, as well as some improved features, such as cloud storage, autosaving, and the option to restart a mission rather than travel back across the city to start it again.

These mobile versions are available for most iOS and Android devices, making them accessible to most players.


Of all the retro games available on smartphones today, poker is one of the oldest. The exact origins of this popular card game are disputed, but we know for sure that it’s several hundred years old and evolved many times as it made its way across Europe.

Poker’s popularity has been helped by the fact that it is now available on mobile devices, with online platforms connecting players remotely to a table where they can take on other people.

Most leading online card rooms do more than just offer ‘poker’. They carry a long list of different variants, including HORSE, Badugi, razz, and Omaha hi/lo, in addition to the better-known and more popular flavors like Texas Hold’em. Additionally, they provide guides and other useful content that explain the rules, mechanics, and key features of each game so players can better understand how they work.

Poker can be played on both iOS and Android devices, either through a dedicated app or, in some cases, through your phone’s web browser.


Pac-Man was one of the first big video game blockbusters. Very soon after its release in May 1980, the market was flooded with clones and copycats as other gaming companies attempted to ride the wave of excitement surrounding this hungry yellow circle.

Following the success of the original, Namco, the game’s publisher, has released a long list of sequels and spin-offs of Pac-Man, including Ms. Pac-Man, Pac-Man Plus, Pac-Attack, and Pac-Man World Rally.

Of course, unless you’re a Pac-Man mega fan, you’re only likely to remember the original maze game that most of us have enjoyed. And, if you want to relive this epic retro title, you’ll find several versions available for both iOS and Android.

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