Come on 2017, we’re not far enough into you yet for you to mess with us. Generally, when we sit down to highlight the most promising mobile games in any given week, we have a hard time narrowing down the list. This week? Not so much.

That doesn’t mean a new release might not become one of your favorites, just that the quantity isn’t there like it is most of the time. We’ll cross our fingers and hope the quality makes up for it. We don’t have any clue since we haven’t played all these games yet, but here’s what has at least caught our eyes.

WarFriends

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Finally, a shooter that doesn’t necessarily require the reflexes of teenagers to be competitive, and one that has a tactical element as well. In fact, WarFriends is a lot like what would happen if someone mashed up a tap-to-shoot action game and Clash Royale, not that anyone was really suggesting that was a thing that needed to be done. In any case, EA Chillingo is offering up customizable little warriors, a wide variety of weapons, guilds, leaderboards and the whole PvP shebang. Should it bother us that the guys shooting at each other all look so cute?

Mary Le Chef: Cooking Passion

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Once upon a time, it was farming games that could do no wrong with casual gamers. An argument could be made that cooking games are now the genre du jour for that same crowd, and we like that phrase since it fits in so well with titles like this one too. The hook to Cooking Passion is that it features a story to go along with the usual time management hijinks. It’s from the makers of the Delicious series as well, so these are people who would probably agree with our assessment of how much gamers love to cook. Virtually speaking, anyway.

Draw Story

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Every once in a while, you see a quote in an App Store write-up that makes you just kind of go, “Wait a minute …” In the case of Draw Story, it’s because this is totally unattributed: “The best drawing game on the App Store. It’s laugh out loud funny!” For all we know, someone at Neon Play could have made that up themselves. Regardless, this does in fact look like a lot of fun, and it’s not like there are a ton of drawing games with humorous leanings. Plus Draw Story looks like it’s social without forcing it, something we always appreciate.

Cannon Land Family

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If you’ve never heard of Pet Bullets before, they’re exactly what they sound like: cute, animal projectiles. They’re back to be fired out of cannons in Cannon Land Family, because why not? Seeing as all of us need a good one-touch game to play at any given time, this one offers 50 collectible Pet Bullets to fire through 30 challenges, plus an Endless Mode, daily prizes an more.

Super Gridland

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Survival match-3 is not a sub-genre that I even knew existed. PC gamers did, though, since Gridland came out a few years ago from the maker of A Dark Room. What makes the iOS version Super? Buffed up graphics and presentation, for starters. The idea here is that you have to gather resources during the day and fend off things that want to eat you at night. In that sense it’s something like Minecraft, except a lot less blocky and with more matching. Also less kids making YouTube videos, unless there’s a crowd waiting to make match-3 clips that I’ve never met.

Z-Exemplar

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Ah, the good old days, when men were men and space-themed shooters were side-scrollers. Any game that names R-Type and Gradius as inspirations has our immediate respect, and even though the action is rendered in 8-bit pixel style, it somehow seems brighter and more vivid than you probably remember. Choose your loadout and get ready to fly through 960 different planetary battlegrounds. Yes, you read that right. If you get hooked on this one, it’s going to have its claws in you for a while.

Red’s Kingdom

red's kingdom

We hit you with a few doses of cute in this week’s list already, but here’s one more. Red’s Kingdom is a puzzle/adventure game with treasure to find, nuts to collect and lots more to discover in its 17 areas. Might it have escaped our notice on a more typically crowded week for the app stores? It very well might have, so consider this a bonus discovery of the cute variety. And with that, we’re out ’til next week.