The number of great games for the iPad has grown quickly since the iPad was introduced. The quality of the graphics likewise has increased to rival that of recent home gaming consoles. To celebrate how far the iPad has come as a gaming device, we’ve gathered together the 25 best-reviewed iPad games of all-time.
|1. Plants vs Zombies ($2.99) is one of the most popular and bestselling games ever for the iPad. It’s a tower-defense game where the object is to defend your home from endless waves of Zombies using special plants and their powers. A whimsical cartoony style belies the serious strategy it will take to successfully defend your home. Beautiful graphics and deep gameplay make this one a winner.
|2. Angry Birds Rio HD ($0.99) is the sequel to the famous physics puzzler and a tie-in with the recently released movie Rio. The object is to launch birds and crash into structures to destroy your enemies and free your friends. Features the same great gameplay from the original as well as some unique twists from the movie.
|3. Dead Space HD ($9.99) is a horror survival game based on the popular console titles of the same name. Provides a cinematic experience in a FPS structure, with professional voice acting, a movie-esque score, and sound effects. Cutting-edge graphics for the iPad.
|4. Flight Control HD ($4.99) is the popular iPhone game given its own iPad version. Land planes by drawing their paths to the runway with your finger. Make sure planes don’t collide, else it’s game over. Sound simple, but when the skies get hectic, it’s harder than you think. One of the first truly classic mobile games that showed off the potential of the touchscreen for a unique gaming experience.
|5. Infinity Blade ($5.99) features some of the most cutting-edge graphics available for the iPad (and iPad 2). Battle one-on-one through a castle full of warriors looking to test your skill. Collect gold and upgrade your weapons, armor, and spells. Learn gestures to perform various attacks and defensive moves.
|6. Sword and Sorcery EP ($4.99) is a cutting-edge, beautifully crafted adventure game designed especially for the iPad. Filled with humor and clever puzzle-solving, it’s a unique experience with an incredible soundtrack thrown in. Come for the gaming, stay for the artistry.
|7. Cut the Rope HD ($1.99) is a beautifully designed puzzle game for the iPad. Strategically cut pieces of hanging rope so that candy falls into the monster’s mouth. Sounds easy, but multiple strands of rope, moving obstacles, and all sorts of other clever twists complicate the task. One of the most well-balanced puzzle games I’ve played—not too easy, not too heard. A visual treat.
|8. Fruit Ninja HD ($2.99) is a fun fruit-slicing game that offers a unique fast-finger-swiping touchscreen experience. Slice up fruit when it flies onto the screen. Avoid slicing the flying bombs. Create special combos by slicing up the same fruit into multiple pieces during flight. A whimsical game that will have your fingers, hands, and arms flying and your mouth smiling.
|9. World of Goo ($4.99) is a classic puzzle-solving game that has been a hit on just about every platform it’s come to, and the iPad is no different. Stretch, sling, and build the various types of goo in order to solve the various puzzles. Unique whimsical gameplay that is only enhanced by the iPad’s touchscreen.
|10. Osmos for iPad ($4.99) is a beautifully unique puzzle/physics game. Swallow smaller orbs to grow your own, carefully navigating around bigger orbs that consume yours. Avoid the stronger gravitational pull of larger orbs. Propel your orb by spewing out its own mass, only don’t spew too much, less you make your orb too small. Unique strategy and gameplay. Simply a beautiful game.
|11. Real Racing 2 HD ($1.99) is a realistic racing game featuring over 30 real cars to race in 15 different locations. Play in a career mode or race others via online multiplayer. Supports up to 16 racers! Keep your progress synched across multiple devices. Sharp, detailed, realistic graphics.
|12. Little Things ($2.99) is a hidden-object game with beautiful, colorful graphics. Search among the hundreds of items that make up a picture of a much larger item. Zoom in and out and the graphics stay sharp. Find all the requested items to move on to the next level. A casual, stress-free game with relaxing background music. Great for kids and adults alike.
|13. Dungeon Hunter 2 HD ($6.99) is a hack-n-slash RPG game that is a sequel to the popular original. Choose among 3 character classes with 2 specializations. Improve your skills and spells, collect hundreds of unique items, change your characters look with new armor and weapons. Quest through a world 5 times bigger than the original. Spectacular graphics with nice animations.
|14. MaxAdventure ($0.99) is a combination of a survival shooter and an adventure game. Aliens have invaded and locked up all the adults. Use Max to kill aliens and free friends. Collect new weapons and treasure to upgrade Max. Use the right kind of gun to destroy alien pods before they hatch. Addictive gameplay.
|15. Bug Heroes ($1.99) is like a blend of tower defense, RPG, and adventure game genres. Defend your base from hordes ofbugs by fortifying your bases with supplies and killing enemies with various weapons and fighting skills. Explore new territory and collect coins and weapons. There’s a little bit of everything here. One of the best critically reviewed games on the iPad.
|16. Uber Racer 3D – Sandstorm ($0.99) is a realistic racing game with plenty of jumps, shortcuts, and extras to keep this from becoming a boring racer-on-rails experience. What it lacks in über graphics it makes up in excellent deep gameplay and a cheap price.
|17. Drawn: The Painted Tower: HD ($6.99) is a beautiful point-and-click adventure game that will satisfy even hardened veterans of the genre. Make your way through the painted tower, gathering clues and solving puzzles in a quest to rescue a girl who has the power to bring her drawings to life. Features well-designed puzzles.
|18. War Pinball HD ($2.99) may be the best pinball table from Gameprom, makes of other iPhone/iPad pinball classics like Wild West Pinball and Pinball HD for iPad. War Pinball offers three different tables based on three classic action movies: Platoon, Missing in Action (with Chuck Norris!), and Navy Seals. Features soundtracks and voice acting from the movies.
|19. Reckless Racing HD ($4.99) is a racing game with Dukes of Hazzard-like physics and gameplay. Compete not only to win the race against competitors but also to earn medals by improving your times. Features 8 tracks to rip through, then unlock the reverse direction for 16 total tracks. Features online multiplayer as well—race against strangers from the Internets. Race several different vehicles, from an Indy car to Humvees and trucks.
|20. Tapper World Tour HD ($2.99) is the classic arcade game updated for the iPad. Features Retina-Display graphics with artwork from legendary artist Don Bluth (Dragon’s Lair). Work in bars around the world. Serve patrons before they reach the end of the bar and catch their empty glasses. Use special powers like stage shows to distract the customers for a brief respite. A beautiful update to the classic version with HD graphics.
|21. MiniGore HD ($2.99) is a survival shooter with a unique artistic style. How long can you survive against wave after wave of monsters from the dark? Collect more powerful weapons, retreat or advance, just don’t let the monsters get to you.
|22. Rage HD ($1.99) was one of the first games with high-resolution graphics for the iPhone 4’s Retina Display, so it looks great on the iPad’s larger screen too. It’s also a great first-person shooter with wicked gameplay. Make your way through a twisted game-show world, killing horrific monsters before they kill you. A well-designed game providing a console-like experience for only $1.99. It’s only drawback is that it’s a bit short.
|23. LEGO Harry Potter ($4.99) brings the entire console Harry Potter game to the iPad in one huge game. Dozens of hours of gameplay that fans of the books and movies will love. A true bargain. Travel through the stories of books 1-4 and solve puzzles, cast spells, and battle enemies like Draco and Snape. A truly epic game that puts you in control of not only Harry but dozens of other characters as well. Simple gameplay perfect for kids and adults alike.
|24. AirAttack HD ($0.99) is a wicked airplane shooter-on-rails that asks, what if the Nazi’s actually developed futuristic weaponry like UFOs and Zeppelins that launch ball lightning? Take them on with nothing but your trusty P-51 Mustang. Intense gameplay, fun retro-futuristic enemies, and lots of power-ups. One of the lesser known gems in the App Store.
|25. Labyrinth 2 HD ($7.99) is a masterfully designed labyrinth puzzle game. The original Labyrinth was a popular iPhone game, and the sequel takes things up a notch. Navigate your pinball through the maze, avoiding the various obstacles. Cannons, magnets, bumpers, resizers, and more complicate the task. Besides the included levels, also play tens of thousands of levels designed by the community or design your own. Limitless unique gameplay.