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If you’ve been a bad kid, Santa leaves a lump of coal in your stocking. If you’ve been a bad grown-up, Santa takes away your internet connection. What do you do when you’re stuck without data or Wi-Fi? Play some games that work perfectly offline.

On Android, even if you have downloaded a full game, it sometimes requires an internet connection to start. It’s something we’ve seen on games like Dead Trigger 2 already. But there are still plenty of fully functional games that don’t need an internet connection.

Situations without internet can drag on for quite a long while. Whether it’s a long flight or a frayed broadband cable, you need to be prepared for the long haul. Accordingly, we had a few requirements for games in this list:

  • It should be free. This is a “backup” game, so no point spending hard-earned dough on it.
  • It should have plenty of playable levels. If the game finishes in half an hour, what’re you going to do after that?
  • It should be ridiculously fun and addictive.

We’ve already told you the best Android apps to live without data or Wi-Fi The Best Offline Android Apps for Living Without Data The Best Offline Android Apps for Living Without Data Data plans are expensive, and you don't need them. Here's how you can get by without one and still take full advantage of your Android smartphone. Read More . Depending on what types of games you enjoy, here are our top offline picks for every major genre:

Action/Shooter: Major Mayhem

It’s difficult to state just how much fun Major Mayhem is. It’s another one of Adult Swim’s fantastic mobile games with a long single-player campaign. You’ll be playing as the titular character, taking down a string of bad guys.

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The game is staged like a shooting gallery. Enemies pop out from hiding spots, and you tap to kill them (or throw bombs if you’re especially angry). The enemies will also try to shoot you, so make sure Major Mayhem doesn’t take too much damage himself. Earn bonuses for headshots, killing sprees, and cool kills, and upgrade your weapons when you can.

Major Mayhem is the relief you need when the frustration of internet-less life gets to you.

Download: Major Mayhem for Android (Free)

Fighting: Shadow Fight

From the days of Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter, one-on-one combat games have been a great way to pass the time. On Android, you might want to give Shadow Fight a try.

You’ll need to learn a whole bunch of moves to be a true warrior. The game has two action buttons (punch or kick), and a directional pad. Learn the combinations and you’ll soon be a fantastic ninja. It’s tougher than a game like WWE Immortals, but it’s a lot more rewarding too.

Shadow Fight’s two-dimensional art style, with silhouettes instead of characters, adds to its charm. It’s all about the fighting here, not about any frills.

Downloads: Shadow Fight for Android (Free)

Platformer: Shadow Blade Zero

Forget about Mario, your new favorite video game mascot is Kuro the ninja. Nothing will stop him in his quest to find his teacher and deliver an important message. Let’s jump into the world of Shadow Blade, where you will slice enemies and jump over traps till you find your master.

Shadow Blade is an unputdownable side-scrolling platformer. The good news is that Android users don’t need to pay for it any more. Shadow Blade Zero is the full game for free, powered by ads. But the ads don’t need an internet connection, so you can go ahead and play it while offline. Neat!

Download: Shadow Blade Zero for Android (Free)

Endless Runner: Crossy Road

Crossy Road shouldn’t be as addictive as it is. It also shouldn’t be as free as it is, what with the amount of work that went into it. But hey, who’s complaining?

The 8-bit pixel art style is gorgeous, as you control a chicken who simply wants to cross the road. Tap to go ahead one lane, swipe in any direction to move that side. Avoid the cars on the highways, the streams in your path, and make it to the safe green grass as often as you can. And you need to move fast!

You’ll drive yourself nuts trying to beat your own high score. Most importantly, even though it’s repetitive, it never gets boring, so you can play it for hours.

Download: Crossy Road for Android (Free)

Puzzle: Lazors

When someone on Reddit asked what’s the must-have offline game on Android, Lazors was the top-voted comment. Start playing, and it’s apparent why. The game is intuitive, yet at the same time challenging.

Each level starts with one or more active lasers, and one or more targets. You’ll also have a set of mirrors, glasses, or other types of blocks to move around. Position them so that the laser hits the target. There are 280 levels to get through, and it gets more difficult as you progress.

Download: Lazors for Android (Free)

Racing: Asphalt Nitro

You can’t have a game that takes 2GB just sitting on your phone for an internet emergency. That’s preposterous! Asphalt Nitro is the smart option. It takes only 110 MB of space, and it works even on older hardware.

Nitro is a stripped-down version of the popular high-end Asphalt car racing series. The graphics aren’t as good, but the gameplay is solid. Get in your car, start competing, and keep upgrading your ride. There are 125 levels of increasing difficulty for you to go through, so that’s plenty of racing time.

There are tons of good racing games, but they often need internet. Asphalt Nitro perfectly meets the “free, offline, long game time” requirements. No wonder it was one of the best free Android games of 2015 10 Best Free Android Games of the Year 10 Best Free Android Games of the Year Did you miss out on an Android game that you should be playing? Our end-of-year roundup is a handy checklist to know what your thumbs should be tapping on. Read More .

Download: Asphalt Nitro for Android (Free)

Strategy: Plants vs. Zombies 2

Back in 2013, Plants vs. Zombies 2 was our game of the year. Three years have passed, but it still holds up as one of the best strategy games out there.

Things are pretty simple in PvZ2. You have an array of plants with different abilities. Zombies want to infiltrate your yard and kill you. Plot the plants in a way where they can destroy the zombies before the undead can cause any harm.

As with any strategy game, it gets more difficult as you go along. And yes, it aggressively pushes its in-app purchases, but you don’t need to buy anything to enjoy this game.

Download: Plants vs. Zombies 2 for Android (Free)

RPG: Pixel Dungeon

It’s rare to find a free-to-play game without ads or hidden costs No Hidden Cost: 7 Free-To-Play Games That Are Actually Free No Hidden Cost: 7 Free-To-Play Games That Are Actually Free Mobile gaming has a problem. You download a game, you start playing, but you hit a paywall. These games don't have that problem at all. Read More . So rejoice, role-playing game fans. Pixel Dungeon is a fantastic RPG that is completely free.

You play as a warrior, huntress, mage, or rogue, stuck in the dungeons and looking for adventure. Explore lower and lower, finding new secrets, monsters, potions, and magical plants. The pixelated design and the text commentary are the cherries on top for what is already an engrossing game.

You won’t realize where the time went as you upgrade your character and explore the dungeon. Without doubt, it’s one of the best mobile games when you’re without data or Wi-Fi 13 Fun Mobile Games When You Have NO Data or Wi-Fi 13 Fun Mobile Games When You Have NO Data or Wi-Fi The next time you're caught without any Internet or reception, these 13 games will keep you company, no problem. Read More .

Download: Pixel Dungeon for Android (Free)

Sports: Flick Soccer 17

Soccer is the world’s most popular sport, so it’s only natural that the Play Store is full of them. Several of them are great, but when you’re offline, you need to keep playing without waiting for retries.

Flick Soccer 17 is the new version of the classic touch-swipe Flick Soccer game. Gorgeous graphics, better accuracy, and improved physics make this worth it even if you have played the original. All you have to do is score goals. Swipe the ball in the right trajectory to get it past the goalkeeper and defenders, and maybe even hit the moving bullseye if you can. Target boosts like more time, double pointer, and so on can increase your score.

Whether you want the limited-time kicks or precision kicks, Flick Soccer 17 will keep you entertained. And just in case this isn’t your style, check these other spectacular sports games on Android Get Sporty On Your Android With These 7 Free & Fun Games Get Sporty On Your Android With These 7 Free & Fun Games Sports are fun. Video games are fun. Combine the two on your Android device and it's a guaranteed good time! Personally, I have always enjoyed arcade games (those that emphasize larger-than-life fun) over simulation (those... Read More , several of which can be played offline.

Download: Flick Soccer 17 for Android (Free)

Board Game (and Multiplayer): Sea Battle 2

Remember the good old game of Battleships? You plot your ships on a grid map. Your opponent shoots missiles at grids, trying to scuttle them all. And you do the same for their ships. Well, its digital recreation, Sea Battle 2, is as much fun as the original.

Offline, you can play against the AI and keep getting better. But the best part is that Sea Battle 2 can not only be played offline, but even multiplayer over Bluetooth. That’s right, this is the only game to go player-vs-player without needing internet. In fact, two people can play it over a single phone, taking turns. So even if your co-passenger doesn’t have it installed, you two can have a good time on the flight.

Smartphones let you play other board games 6 Classic Board Games You Can Play on Your Phone 6 Classic Board Games You Can Play on Your Phone Those sepia-toned childhood memories of beating your granddad at Monopoly can be partially recreated on your smartphone. Read More , but nothing comes close to Sea Battle 2.

Download: Sea Battle 2 for Android (Free)

What Did We Miss?

Apart from these 10 fantastic offline games, there are plenty of other good titles on the Play Store. Whether it’s paid or free, tell us your favorite game to play on flights or when your internet connection is on the fritz.

Originally written by Mihir Patkar on January 13th, 2014.

  1. Yash
    November 23, 2016 at 11:10 am

    What about swordigo? Best game ever

  2. Kate Paddington
    November 22, 2016 at 8:43 pm

    Solitaire: Decked Out and PinOut are two new takes on old school Windows games that we all used to play when we had no internet.

  3. Doc
    October 26, 2016 at 1:37 pm

    Missed a good one: Dungeon Quest has three character classes, you can take along a second character (AI controlled), and doesn't require an internet connection (although all games require a connection every few weeks to verify the license)

  4. Raphael Alexander
    October 25, 2016 at 4:49 am

    Modern combat 3 and 4, asphalt 8, oddworld: strangers wrath, Rayman games, Alian creeps td, dead space(search online for apk), Monument Valley, shadowgun, gta san Andreas, gangstar vegas.
    Let me know if this was helpful. :-)

    • HemoG
      November 8, 2016 at 4:10 am

      Asphalt 8 requires internet

  5. Brox Inc.
    September 28, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    Awesome list. Keep it up!

  6. Slayer
    May 24, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    - Lara Croft: Relic Run
    - Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Generation
    - Dead Trigger 1
    - Minions
    - Plants vs Zombies 1 & 2
    - Townsmen Premium

  7. fahmiczart
    May 1, 2015 at 8:28 pm

    Aralon:Sword and shadowland , Ravensword and shadow, dead trigger 1 , Galaxy On fire 2 , Asphalt 8:Airbone ,.... That's the game Cool Graphic design and play OFFLINE (except asphalt 8 ,, because i never play that game ,soo many wast size memory

  8. marvin
    January 3, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    You guys are crazy the best offline game is mage and minions wHich is free and does not push advertising. Next is great big War game which cost 3 bucks. Others would be frozen front, heroes of destiny, and injustice by dc comics. I wish clash of clans was offline and other good online games. The good side of offline gAmes is no Internet connection aND you can enjoy them. The bad side is they are addicting and you will be more than willing to spend to progress later in the game. Zephoria is Awesome, but you have to buy each story line. It's actually the best app ever. It's like the original medal gear solid sneaky wise but implements the quick button tap like shenmue had. The game is like buying movies though. Play the entire story and your done.

  9. Geri-Lee
    December 15, 2014 at 10:31 am

    Gotta try Temple Run 2 if u haven't then your losing this opportunity to.

  10. Zarra
    May 25, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    Just so you know, Defender II is telling me it requires a network connection. Prooooobably shouldn't be on the list...

  11. Zarra
    May 25, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    Just so you know, Defender II is telling me it requires a network connection. Prooooobably shouldn't be on the list...

  12. captainkidd10
    May 2, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    i really like spirit stones, and airplane!

  13. Hadi Gurayib
    April 16, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    What Rpg games with a good graphics . dont need an internet connection ? please . Thank you guys .

    • Megs
      April 24, 2014 at 12:36 pm

      I'm looking for some as well. Mostly I see are either they have internet connections or you need to spend real money just access more from the game like dungeons, equipment and other stuff.

    • Andy
      May 13, 2014 at 1:11 am

      Zenonia series are great games, and I think the other was called seed or something like that. The best card game ive ever played is called androminion, its hard to learn but extremely addictive if u get the hang of it

    • Bluemanjohns
      July 5, 2014 at 11:36 pm

      Pixel Dungeon is a small dungeon/RPG game but as in the title has pixel graphics and might not be what you're looking for.

    • AloneStranger
      July 11, 2014 at 4:45 pm

      not sure if this suit your taste, but Adventure bar story is an RPG without needing Internet connection.

    • fahmiczart
      May 1, 2015 at 8:31 pm

      Aralon sword and ravensword(Crescent moon prudiction) are good graphic like Rissing force/Perfect world on pc but theyre play offline(Noo need internet connection) seriously soo cool graphic ,,,

  14. telo
    February 24, 2014 at 5:54 am

    Turbo fast

  15. penguins
    January 28, 2014 at 6:17 am

    I really like the Temple Run and Angry Birds because both games are fun, thrilling and addicting. It wants you to pass all the levels before to stop playing.

  16. Megan
    January 26, 2014 at 3:53 am

    Quell

  17. johnrmless
    January 16, 2014 at 10:52 pm

    Badland, Osmos....

  18. Dan
    January 14, 2014 at 10:20 pm

    Kingdom rush 1 and 2, Pvz1 and pvz2, svz1 and svz2, wheres my water 1 and 2, temple run 1 and 2.

    Honorable mentions: osmos hd, jelly defense, angry birds series, cut the rope series, Metal slug series, hill climb racing, pudding monsters, flow free, loops or dots.

  19. Kartik G
    January 14, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    i think you have missed some of the landmarks in gaming .
    hill climb racing
    candy rush
    jetpack joyride
    subway surfers
    plants vs zombies is no doubt awesome game

  20. Junnette A
    January 14, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    I liked Eufloria and Flow. Try also: Osmos, World of Goo, Bravesmart, Zen Bound, Myth Defense, and Cryptica.

  21. Guy M
    January 14, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    I'm hooked on Jetpack Joyride! But I think it's time for me to find a new guilty pleasure - it'll probably be one of the ones you list here.

  22. Anonymous
    January 14, 2014 at 3:06 am

    Oh, and for that matter, Dead Trigger 1 and Respawnables as well.

  23. Anonymous
    January 14, 2014 at 3:05 am

    Where is Plague Inc.?

  24. Danyjerry
    January 14, 2014 at 1:23 am

    I like Temple Run 2, a very great and fun game for me.

  25. likefunbutnot
    January 13, 2014 at 5:16 pm

    Color Sheep, Elder Sign, Swords and Sworcery, Magic: The Gathering 2014, Bard's Tale, pretty much any Popcap Cap, Eufloria, Worms and one ridiculously specific version of a BubbleShooter game that's not on the Play Store any more.

    I live in hope that someone will get around to porting Orcs Must Die to Android. The gameplay is well suited to a touch screen device and it's fun on my Surface Pro.

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