We've played tons of fantastic games on our humble mobiles this year, so choosing our favourite eight was a struggle, but these are the best iOS/Android games we bashed our way through in 2012...
Plunder! HD (Free to download, £1.99 to unlock full game, iOS)
This piratey puzzler should come with a serious health warning sticker plastered over its App Store page: play this game for more than half an hour and you’ll still be prodding away at three in the morning, a column of drool seeping slowly from the corner of your lips. It’s fiercely addictive even at its most frustrating. All you have to do is get your ships from the left edge to the right, but it'll take some careful planning to get your way past the dozens of obstacles, which can only be cleared by the floating cannons...
Check out the full Plunder! HD review
Hamilton’s Great Adventure
Possibly best described as a ‘platformy puzzler’, Hamilton’s Great Adventure for Android is one of those demanding games that requires concentration, thought and some spot-on reactions in order to reach the end credits. The pick-up-and-play nature of the games makes it a great way to while away a commute, or even an entire evening as you figure out how to get a gold medal on every last level...
Check out the full Hamilton's Great Adventure review
The Room (iOS, £2.99)
One of our favourite new puzzle games on Apple’s tablet, The Room is a beautifully crafted mind-beater that’ll give your brain a solid prodding. The plot is typically light: you find yourself stuck in a room with an enormous box, left to you by an absent relative, with instructions to crack its mysteries and find a way inside. It’s a thin premise that takes a back seat to the real meat of the game, which is figuring out how to peel away the many different layers and reveal the box’s mysterious treasure.
Check out the full The Room review
The Walking Dead (iOS, £2.99 per episode)
Even if you’re suffering from zombie fatigue like us, The Walking Dead – an adventure game based on the popular comics/TV show – is a must-play for fans of the macabre. Unfurling more like an interactive drama than a game, you play as maybe-murderer Lee who is narrowly spared jail thanks to the arrival of a zombie apocalypse. Lee swiftly teams up with a number of other survivors, including a feisty young girl called Clementine, and the aim of the game is to work together to stay alive.
Check out the full Walking Dead review
Lili (iOS £2.99)
Lili is a tremendous and original adventure game which casts you as the titular teenage girl, as she searches for interesting flora for a school project. Sounds as exciting as a Loose Women marathon, but Lili isn’t scrabbling around in people’s window boxes. Desperate for a top grade, she sails off to an island inhabited by bizarre wooden characters who are constantly harassed by mischievous spirits. It just so happens that some of the island’s best flowers grow on these spirits, so Lili and the tree creatures hatch a deal, and she sets off to put the wee devils in their place and liberate her new wooden chums.
Check out the full Lili review
Horn (iOS, Android, £4.99)
If you’re after a game to show off the raw power of your Android/Apple phone or tablet, Horn’s a pretty damn good bet. This action adventure title rivals premium console games for production values and provides hours of exploration and monster-bashing enjoyment.
Check out the full Horn review
LostWinds 2 (£1.49)
Originally starting life as a downloadable game for Nintendo’s Wii, LostWinds 2 has you guiding a young boy called Toku across various treacherous lands on an epic adventure. It’s a platform game, but rather than directly controlling Toku, you conjur up gusts by swiping the screen to blow him around. It’s a unique feature that works well, and thankfully never becomes frustrating.
Check out the full Lost Winds 2 review
Waking Mars (£2.99)
If you’re sick of generic action blasters, try this sedate exploration game that sees you navigating through mildly perilous caverns beneath the surface of Mars. The emphasis is on finding new species and discovering how they survive and reproduce, all while tracking down a missing probe that went before you. Your only companions are a mouthy eccentric robot that helps with your investigations, and your fellow team mate who updates you via radio.