November has always traditionally been one of the greatest months to be a gamer: after all, that’s usually when all of the big-name developers decide to release their most highly-anticipated projects of the year, just in time for the holidays. But now it looks like the same could also be said for the mobile games industry as well, as this past November gave us so many amazing new releases that we had an unbelievably difficult time trying to narrow them all down for this list!
So here’s a quick rundown of the incredible new gaming experiences that kept us busy all throughout November: an exhilarating platform-runner that took us through all sorts of hot and cold places where the ground is made of food; a strategic look at the afterlife for shoguns, where things are actually a bit more crowded than one might initially believe; and of course, a monstrous adventure across the colorful seas that could even give The Legend of Zelda a run for its money.
For a more detailed account of all the games we thought were among November’s best this year, just keep on scrolling down this page. And don’t forget to let us know what you think of our picks in the replies below, or if you have some other great November games in mind that you think should have been included. I guess the only thing left to say now is this: Bring it on, December!
As if there was any doubt that the mobile epic Oceanhorn from Cornfox & Brothers would be scoring Gamezebo’s top accolades this month! Simply put, Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas exemplifies what kinds of things can be accomplished on the mobile platform today, with a beautiful and engrossing campaign, a remarkable sense of exploration, side quests, and boss battles, and a game length that would make like-minded console adventures shiver in their Trencher Boots. Our own Jillian Werner called Oceanhorn “the Zelda-like to end all Zelda-likes” in her official review, and I think it would be difficult to describe this game any better.
But even while Oceanhorn borrows heavily from its main inspirations in the Zelda series, the final product proves to be something that is entirely of its own making. In the game, players will take control of a young hero whose father had set off years ago to slay the monstrous Oceanhorn, only to never be heard from again. Now it’s up to you to follow in his footsteps, with a little sailing, puzzle solving, and treasure chest hunting thrown in along the way. Oceanhorn: Monster of Uncharted Seas has not only completely raised the bar for original mobile games in 2013 and beyond, but it’s currently one of the best gaming experiences you can find anywhere today, period.
Rayman Fiesta Run pretty much takes everything that made 2012’s Rayman Jungle Run such a blast to play and magnifies it by tenfold: with even better visuals, a highly refined map and interface system, and a brisk level of challenge that will keep both hardcore players and die-hard Rayman fans continuously coming back for more. This time around, all of the levels in Rayman’s latest mobile outing are based around hot and cold environments, as you guide Rayman and Globox over fiery infernos and chilly waters. There’s also a recurrent food theme in Rayman Fiesta Run as well, so don’t be surprised to find yourself running on cheese or swinging from a rope made of chili peppers. As someone who’s always loved those old-school platform adventures, Rayman Fiesta Run is everything I could ever ask for from a mobile platform-runner experience, and it goes to show that Rayman may not have arms, but he still has a pretty big leg up on the competition.
Much like the initial first installment in Steve Jackson’s Sorcery! epic, this month’s Part 2 marks a welcomed return to the pitch-perfect manner of visual storytelling that we all know and love, complete with new avatars, an upgraded magic system, and a harrowing tale that takes place behind the treacherous walls of the city of Kharé, where thieves run rampant and shady characters lurk around every corner. And by “visual storytelling,” boy do we mean visual here! In fact, the graphics and design of Part 2 happen to be so good, that Gamezebo’s Andy Chalk even contemplated framing and hanging the map of the city on his wall, if he could. But do you know what the best part about it is? The fact that we still have two more sure-to-be-fantastic installments to look forward to in the Sorcery! adventures, so you’d better get used to seeing that Steve Jackson name around these parts for some time to come!
It should almost come as no surprise that a mobile port of one of the best-received Flash games in recent years would be nothing short of amazing, but King’s League: Odyssey made its way to iOS this month just in case you had any doubts. The result is a highly unique and addictive action and strategy hybrid, where players are tasked with managing their own team of archers, mages, and knights, among many other medieval character types, and laying siege on rival towns and villages, all in the pursuit of your King’s admiration and the respect of his crown. With a colorful presentation and stylistic gameplay that is both easily accessible and contains a surprising amount of depth, not to mention a hefty challenge, King’s League: Odyssey is certainly one mobile game that you’ll want to have sitting at your round table this month.
We’ve always known that shoguns and samurais can be some pretty tough dudes on the battlefield; just look at how sharp their swords are and that evil glint in their eyes. But did you also know that these battle-hardened warriors can still pack a serious wallop from well beyond the grave? So begins the premise of the fantastic Skulls of the Shogun, which puts players in the role of General Akamoto, whose minor lapse in judgment left him deader than the piles of foes he’s been so used to slaying on a daily basis. And while the afterlife isn’t so bad, actually getting there soon becomes a problem: as there are also a lot of fellow dead guys all waiting in line in front of you. So naturally, to get yourself to the head of that line, you’ll need to command your very own legion of dead shoguns, eating enemy skulls and wondering why no one ever thought of such an ingenious blend of gameplay before!