Best strategy games for iPhone and iPad in 2021

Best strategy games for iPhone and iPad

Mobile gaming has often been associated with light-hearted games that help you pass the time when you’re either commuting or procrastinating. However, in the past few years, the progress of mobile technology has created a few welcome niches in mobile gaming. And one of the genres that stand out is Strategy games!

If you are looking for something more adventurous yet educational, strategy games for iPhone have you covered! I have listed some of the best strategy games for iPhone and iPad you’ll love to play. Let’s have a look.

  1. Raiders of the North Sea
  2. DomiNations
  3. The Elder Scrolls
  4. Civilization VI
  5. Subterfuge
  6. FTL
  7. Invisible, Inc.
  8. Reigns
  9. Rome
  10. Fallout Shelter
  11. Plants vs. Zombies
  12. The Oregon Trail

1. Raiders of the North Sea

Raiders of the North Sea strategy games for iPhone and iPad

Raiders of the North Sea brings the classic elements from the physical board game into the digital world. Become a Viking raider in the Viking Age and plant raids on different communities to gather lost treasures.

The game’s objective is to raid for as many resources as possible and impress the Chieftain of your Viking clan. The more resources you have, the more Chieftain is impressed. With extra resources, you can also upgrade your crew and ship to go on more challenging raids.

The gameplay is turn-based, and the digital version animates the gameplay to a fair extent – you can see your ships glide across foreign waters as you plan to raid an unsuspecting community. You can also play the campaign mode to get a better idea of how the gameplay works. Once ready, you can play with friends online and compete for the most loot!

Price: $9.99

Download

2. DomiNations

DomiNations strategy games for iPhone and iPad

This is one of the best strategy games for iOS. Although it takes inspiration from a few of the greatest strategy games on different consoles, DomiNations puts its spin on it. It also has an immense amount of replayability.

The game tasks you to see through the progress of human civilization, starting from the tools in the Iron Age to the age of flying cars – the Space Age. While you oversee all of human history and progress, you also get to conduct raids and build empires of your own.

DomiNations has a few microtransactions, though. If you want to progress faster, you have to make some in-game purchases for leveling up or getting more resources. If you aren’t willing to spend money, you can still play the game without purchasing. However, your progress will be slower.

Regardless of microtransactions, this game is still an absolute joy to play. If you like your strategy games to give you decisive moments that will create a great impact in the latter stages of your campaign, DomiNations is for you!

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $0.99)

Download

3. The Elder Scrolls: Legends

The Elder Scrolls strategy game for iPhone and iPad

The Elder Scrolls franchise has been popularized over the years through numerous entries on video game consoles. With The Elder Scrolls: Legends, you get the wonderful stories of the Elder Scrolls universe, along with the elements of a strategy game.

The game changes the gameplay style taken from other similar card and strategy games. There are two lanes for battling creatures instead of one. Moreover, you can put certain effects on the lanes, changing how they operate for the rest of the match. 

The game doesn’t believe in the idea of microtransactions, so you will not have to spend huge sums of money to get any sort of advantage. In fact, with a little bit of patience, you will be rewarded with cards from the higher tiers, as well as some worthwhile challenges. 

If you want to play this game with friends, you can compete over tournaments and ranked challenges. These challenges change every month, so you will have to adjust your playstyle accordingly to reach and remain at the top.

If you’re a fan of the Elder Scrolls universe, you will not be disappointed, as elements from the previous games on consoles have been added to the mobile game. Additionally, there’s a campaign for you to play through as well!

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $1.99)

Download

4. Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI

Sid Meier's Civilization® VI strategy game for iPhone and iPad

Sid Meier’s Civilization games have been the cornerstone of strategy games on video game consoles for a long time. Now, this powerhouse of a strategy game is available on iOS as well.

The game has been ported over to mobile devices, but it does not leave any bells and whistles. It is the full game, as gorgeous as you can find it on a laptop or a gaming PC. With a steep learning curve and vastly deep gameplay mechanics, Civilization VI is one of the best war strategy games for iPhone and iPad.

In Civilization VI, you control the way human beings progress through time. From building empires to establishing corporate structures in a dystopian future, you can do it all. It has turn-based gameplay, and you can gather resources to build your settlement either through war or political connections. 

It is a race towards becoming the most advanced community in the world. The maps on which you can play the game are also quite large, meaning that there’s a fair bit of exploring here.

If you’re already a fan of Sid Meier’s strategy games and Civilization VI on gaming consoles, this game is a must-play for your mobile device. You will have to purchase the game after playing 60 rounds, but the price is worth it.

Price: Free

Download

5. Subterfuge

Subterfuge strategy games for iPhone and iPad

A war strategy game, Subterfuge takes command over bases and submarines as you try to manage your resources to survive the war. 

The game changes the mechanics of war strategy games. Instead of matches that last for a single play session, the matches in Subterfuge are drawn out far longer.

When you issue a command over your base or submarines, the instructions will be carried out over hours in real-time. Basically, as a player, you have to think a few steps ahead of your opponents and track how long it takes for the game to carry out your orders. 

As a strategy game, the mechanics are quite complex. You will have to invest a fair amount of time in understanding how the game works and what your playstyle or method of diplomacy in the game could be. Some modifiers can add to your war force. However, the boosts they provide to your bases or submarines are temporary.

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $0.99)

Download

6. FTL: Faster Than Light

FTL strategy game for iPad

When Faster Than Light was released on PC in 2012, it took the gaming community by storm. Its addictive gameplay was combined with a rewarding challenge-based progression system that fans adored.

With its release for Apple devices, you can now enjoy this award-winning game at your fingertips. You’re tasked with running your spaceship as you try to save the galaxy. You also have to manage your crew and battle with hostile forces along the way.

The game has eight sectors. It has a procedurally generated system. This means that the game adapts to your actions and generates levels and events in the game based on your actions. Hence, the game’s events won’t be the same for most players. 

A playthrough of the game will end if you lose your crew members or your ship is destroyed. In such a scenario, you have to start the game once again. Faster Than Light also includes a good amount of combat and diplomacy.

Price: $9.99

Download

7. Invisible, Inc.

Invisible, Inc. strategy game iPad

Invisible, Inc. is a perfect example of incorporating a unique idea onto a standard strategy game to create something new. Its take on a dystopian future is something rarely seen in mobile games.

The game takes the setting of a dystopian future where mega-corporations are ruling the world. These corporations use a database monitoring people working and living under them.

You, as a player, are put in the shoes of a group of spies and specialists whose objectives are to loot as many resources as possible and ultimately live off the grid. In your bid to escape from the prying eyes of these corporations, you must direct the agents as they try to pull off unbelievable heists. Every successful heist can damage corporations.

Invisible, Inc. also provides different agents to control, and each agent specializes in certain tasks. You can customize the agents to your liking, leading to very different playing styles. You have to make each decision carefully, as any wrong decision could cost an agent’s life.

Price: $4.99

Download

8. Reigns: Game of Thrones

Reigns- Game of Thrones strategy game for iPhone and iPad

It’s been a while since the textual form of choose-your-own-adventure games has been released. Of late, games of this nature are becoming popular again. Keeping this in mind, Reigns: Game of Thrones is available for your iPhone and iPad, and it does justice to the classic genre.

The game has different endings and branching storylines based on the choices you make. You have to follow the on-screen texts and swipe either left or right based on the decision you want to make. However, you must consider that any action you take can (and will) impact your dynasty, either becoming successful or failing miserably.

As the decision-maker, Reigns allows you to either be a loved ruler or a dictator and tyrant who rules through fear. The game also has different communities and sectors to manage, including the army and the religious factions. The lives of your citizens also depend on each decision you approve of.

As a player, you can also take advice from your subordinates to understand how your decisions shape the world of Reigns: Game of Thrones.

Some of the choices you make in the game will have an impact centuries down the line. So, you will have to think about every action before executing carefully.

Price: $3.99

Download

9. Rome: Total War

ROME strategy game for iPhone and iPad

Rome: Total War was initially released to the PC and received rave reviews for its strategy-based gameplay and storyline. Now, it’s been ported to mobile devices to enjoy the famous series at your fingertips.

The game also brings in the various expansion packs available on the PC game. Rome: Total War gives you the task of commanding one of the greatest armies in history. Guide the Roman army towards victory as you craft an empire from the spoils of war.

Fans of the game’s PC version will understand the need for tactical expertise as you micro-manage every aspect of your army. From the resources required to operate the entire army to the build of each army unit, you will have to supervise these areas both before the start and during the battle.

There are also a few campaigns you can play. During those, you will have to manage the economic and civil aspects of your empire. These points are crucial as they will help strengthen your empire and army. As you keep facing tougher opponents, you will have to upgrade your army as well.

Price: $9.99

Download

10. Fallout Shelter

Fallout Shelter strategy game for iPhone and iPad

The Fallout series has been a classic RPG and strategy series for over 20 years. With Fallout Shelter, a different take on the universe of Fallout comes to iPhone and iPad.

Anyone familiar with Fallout’s story will know that Vaults are important bunkers that form a crucial part of Fallout. A few chosen people are allowed to live in Vaults in case of an apocalyptic scenario. They are chosen based on how much they could help in rebuilding society after a catastrophic event. 

In Fallout Shelter, the game’s objective is to manage every aspect of a Vault. In Fallout’s post-apocalyptic scenario, you have to ensure that each Vault resident is safe and well looked after. 

While you take care of the residents, you also have to ensure that the Vault is safe from intruders and other such threats. To manage resources, you also have to send out a few residents to loot for both consumables and weapons.

While this game seems to cater to fans, if you’re a newcomer to this series, it is equal parts challenging and rewarding. The gameplay will keep you interested, and its events will tickle your brain cells.

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $0.99)

Download

11. Plants vs. Zombies

Plants vs. Zombies™ strategy game for iPhone and iPad

Plants vs. Zombies has been a classic game for mobile devices for quite some time now. Even after 13 years since the first release of the game, it continues to remain relevant worldwide.

The gameplay is relatively simple. You will have to grow plants outside your in-game home to save yourself from the zombies trying to eat you. The plants come in different varieties and with different weapons that can be used to destroy the zombies.

You will have to manage your resources and plant your different weapons in strategic places to deal with the horde of zombies. The zombies also come in specific types that can counter your plant-based weapons. You will have to think on your feet and act fast to keep them at a safe distance.

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $0.99)

Download

12. The Oregon Trail

The Oregon Trail strategy game for iPhone and iPad

The Oregon Trail has a lot of history in the world of video games. It was created to be an educational source for children to understand the life of 19th-century pioneers who lived on the Oregon Trail. 

Since then, it has been updated with each generation of consoles. Finally, it is available on Apple devices, thanks to Gameloft. The game tasks you to develop your frontier town and manage the resources of the town. Every decision you make will change the economic, social, and political aspects of the town itself. 

You can also create your in-game characters. They will have their personalities and attires. As you build your frontier town, you decide how it will function. You can go for your chaotic best in laying out the town or structure your town based on real-life locations.

Price: Free (In app-purchase starts from $0.99)

Download

These are some of our favorite strategy games for iPhone and iPad. They will keep you occupied with interesting stories and tricky gameplay systems. Do you think we missed out on a game that you love? Or is there an underrated gem you want us to discover? Share them in the comments below!

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