16 Best Old-School Games for Your Phone

Need an old-school fix? There are tons of great, classic mobile games you can download on your mobile phone right now. Most of them work for both Android and iOS devices, like the iPhone. Some are even available for your tablet.

Though many have, not all classic games have been ported to modern day phones and tablets. The games we've listed below are our favorites not only because the story matches that of the classic game but because the graphics are usually either similar or even better than the originals.

'Tetris'

Tetris screenshot

EA Mobile

 

What We Like

  • EA Tetris has the appeal of the classic game.

  • Controls are good.

  • New Explorer mode is fun.

What We Don't Like

  • Plays the same music repeatedly unless you pay a fee.

  • Online connection required.

  • Intrusive ads.

"Tetris" is just as great as it always has been, but don’t expect any amazing new tricks. Although it's not much different than the original, you could argue that that's what makes it so enjoyable.

There are several "Tetris" games available for Android and iPhone but not all of them have that original, classic feel. ​The closest option for Android is "TETRIS" from Electronic Arts.

EA also has "TETRIS Blitz" for iPhone/iPad and Android that's a bit more action-packed and modern than the classic edition.

'Battleship'

Battleship screenshot

EA Mobile

 

What We Like

  • Has both Classic Mode and new Commander Mode.

  • Online multiplayer capability.

  • Graphics quality is true to the original game.

What We Don't Like

  • Online multiplayer mode is a little glitchy.

  • Two players can't play face-to-face on the same device.

  • In-app purchases required to reach higher levels – in a paid app.

"Battleship" is a smooth, fun adaptation of the board game classic. You and your opponent set up ships on your own sides of the game, and then both of you try to sink the other player's ships by guessing where they're at on the grid.

You can get "Battleship: Official Edition" from Marmalade Game Studio on Google Play. However, there are alternatives, too, from developers like Smuttlewerk Interactive.

'Dragon's Lair'

Dragon’s Lair screenshot
Photo Courtesy: EA Mobile

What We Like

  • Fully animated game includes original scenes.

  • High-definition graphics.

What We Don't Like

  • Many crash and freeze complaints since last update.

"Dragon’s Lair" is a carbon copy of the beautiful arcade classic—and just as frustrating as you remember. You're trying to rescue Princess Daphne from Singe the dragon.

This game can be downloaded from Google Play. To play "Dragon's Lair" on an iPhone, get it from ​iTunes; another version, "Dragon's Lair HD" is offered for iPads and is also on iTunes.

You can also grab "Dragon's Lair 2: Time Warp" on your Android, iPhone, or iPad. 

'Froodie - Road Crossing Frog Frogger'

Frogger screenshot

 Konami

What We Like

  • Classic Frogger game with HD graphics and arcade sounds.

  • Game includes new special powers.

  • Easy game quickly grows difficult.

What We Don't Like

  • Free version doesn't launch in iOS 12.

  • Reports of glitches in paid version with iOS 11 and later.

  • Needs more levels.

"Froodie" has new visuals, but the gameplay remains the same as the early eighties arcade classic. Try to get your frog across the street or river, avoiding obstacles along the way.

'Wolfenstein 3D Classic'

Wolfenstein
id

What We Like

  • Includes all six of the original episodes.

  • Good controls and good gaming.

What We Don't Like

  • Hasn't been updated since 2014.

  • Not available at iOS App Store or Google Play.

Old-school gaming at its finest, "Wolfenstein 3D Classic" is a copy of the early ‘90s PC shoot ‘em up. It’s about as deep as a kiddie pool, but good luck finding faster action on your phone.

If you're on an Android, you can install this game from Uptodown.

'Civilization Revolution 2'

CIV 2
 CIV 2

What We Like

  • A more animated version of the original.

  • Gameplay is much like its popular predecessor.

What We Don't Like

  • No Android update since 2014.

  • Priced on the high side.

  • Steep learning curve.

"Civilization Revolution" takes the traditionally long, strategy game and crams all the fun into a phone or tablet. Unfortunately, the developer of this game, 2K, no longer offers the original "Civilization Revolution."

'Earthworm Jim'

Earthworm Jim
Gameloft

What We Like

  • Beautifully designed levels.

  • True to the storyline of the original console game.

  • Play free forever. Save at any time.

What We Don't Like

  • On-screen D-pad controls are sometimes in the way.

  • Difficult to make precise jumps with virtual controls.

Though a tough-edged platform game, "Earthworm Jim" doesn’t translate well to mobile devices, it's fun nonetheless. You're a robot-like earthworm who has to avoid obstacles while battling enemies.

'Connect 4'

Connect Four screenshot

 EA Mobile

What We Like

  • Strongly reminiscent of original board game.

  • Difficulty levels are well-spaced.

  • Much more challenging than it looks.

What We Don't Like

  • Many users claim the computer cheats.

  • Intrusive advertising.

  • Some new users find the game "boring."

"Connect 4" is a solid version of the classic board game with some graphic and gameplay flourishes. You can play by yourself or with others online.

iPad and iPhones users can grab "Connect 4" in the App Store. Android players have other options."4 in a row king" is the name of one "Connect Four" game on Google Play. A similar one is called "4 in a Row Connect Multiplayer."

'Scrabble'

Scrabble screenshot

EA Mobile

What We Like

  • Play several games with friends online at the same time.

  • Built-in official Scrabble dictionary.

  • Teacher feature reveals best play – after you play.

What We Don't Like

  • Excessive ads in free version of game.

  • Premium game version is overpriced.

  • Computer makes words that aren't words.

"Scrabble" is just as fun as the classic board game, now without the possibility of losing your tiles! Play alone or with friends online.

Electronic Arts offers a free Scrabble game for Androids, iPhones, and iPads.

'Clue'

Clue screenshot
EA Mobile

What We Like

  • Great streamlined version of classic board game.

  • Multiplayer mode to play with friends online.

  • Fun animations and beautiful graphics.

What We Don't Like

  • Paid game comes with only one (of eight) boards.

  • Game pushes pricy in-app purchases.

  • No local multiplayer mode.

"Clue" is less a mobile board game and more about solving crimes solo—which is fun in itself.

'Pac-Man'

Pac-Man screenshot

Namco Networks 

What We Like

  • Pixel-by-pixel recreation of original mazes plus new mazes.

  • Three difficulty levels.

  • Fun tournaments and Pac-Missions.

What We Don't Like

  • Requests way too much personal info and access to contacts and camera.

  • People under 12 not allowed to play even though game is rated 4+.

"Pac-Man" is just what you remember—no frills, no gimmicks. For more exciting graphics, you can get the championship edition from the same developers.

'Mega Man 2 Mobile'

MegaMan

 Capcom

What We Like

  • Fun but hard at the same time.

  • Two difficulty modes and two gameplay speeds.

What We Don't Like

  • Game differs significantly from the original.

  • Frame rate needs speed improvement.

Old-school fans will go nuts for "Mega Man 2 Mobile," an exact replica of one of the best action/adventure games available on the Nintendo Entertainment System.

'Q*Bert Rebooted'

QBert
Sony Pictures 

What We Like

  • Modes for Classic 2D pixelated game and reimagined 3D game.

  • Controls are not intuitive.

What We Don't Like

  • Intrusive ads until you pay to suppress them.

  • Music is barely audible.

"Q*bert Rebooted" on mobile is a carbon copy of the arcade classic – and is just as cool and as tough as the original. Change the color of the pyramid's cubes by jumping on them while avoiding enemies and other obstacles.

'Bust-A-Move Journey'

Bust-A-Move screenshot

 Taito

What We Like

  • Fun game is faithful to the original game's feel.

  • Free game has 270+ stages.

  • A must-have for Bust-a-Move fans.

What We Don't Like

  • Requires an internet connection.

  • Unlocking new characters costs too many coins.

  • Paid game has in-app purchases.

Based on the popular arcade puzzle series, "Bust-A-Move Journey" brings enough new twists to keep the addictive game fresh.

This games goes by the name "Bust-A-Move Journey" in North America but is actually called "Puzzle Bobble." It's based on "Bubble Bobble," an even older arcade game.

'Street Fighter IV'

Street Fighter IV screenshot
Capcom

What We Like

  • Awesome gameplay with 32 street fighters.

  • Intuitive virtual control pad.

  • Four levels of difficulty.

What We Don't Like

  • No offline multiplayer games.

  • Needs more animation frames for smooth transitions.

  • No free sparring mode.

Though the controls aren't ideal, "Street Fighter IV" is a surprisingly faithful translation of the classic fighting game.

CAPCOM Co, the creators of the original game, has the mobile version available for Androids on Google Play, and for iPhones and iPads on the App Store.

'Glow Hockey'

Glow Hockey screenshot

Natenai

 

What We Like

  • Simple and addictive game.

  • Two-player mode on same device.

  • Colorful glow graphics.

What We Don't Like

  • Intrusive ads cover the goals.

  • No online multiplayer mode.

"Glow Hockey" is a solid version of air hockey. As the name suggests, this air hockey game features a glowing table, ball, and handles.