You don’t need to buy expensive new hardware to get into gaming. Your smartphone can run an impressive number and variety of games. Mobile gaming includes both casual time wasters and challenging games. Once you know the capabilities of your phone you’ll be able to find the right balance for your own enjoyment.
How To Get Into Playing Video Games Series
Modern video games provide entertainment and socialization which works alongside social distancing practices. They are interactive, increasing your interest and engagement. Online multiplayer is a form of remote socializing. Cooperative games allow a family to come together for a shared goal.
Anyone can get into video games, with hardware you likely already own. It doesn’t need a big investment to get started. This series goes over how to get into playing video games on several different platforms. Including your phone, computer, and gaming consoles.
iPhone or Android, ether works
There are lots of game options for both iPhone and Android. Some games may only be available on one or the other. But most are available in either phone’s app store.
iPhone – Open the App Store. Then tap on Games at the bottom. You can also check out Arcade at the bottom. Apple Arcade is a game subscription service. Granting access to 100+ games you can play on your iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV.
Android – Open Google Play. Then tab Games at the bottom.
Free Games and In-App Purchases
Free games aren’t always truly free. Game development cost someone time and resources. Even for an older game made to work on your phone. So they need to monetize somewhere along the line.
The most common way to make money with a free to download game is with “in-app purchases.” These work in different ways. With some games you get a few levels or play modes for free. Then have to pay for more content. Others create a bottleneck to encourage spending. You need 100 gold coins to access the next level. You can either wait a few hours for them to generate, or buy them now for instant access.
There’s nothing wrong with in-app purchases in general. Most are looking to earn the same as a paid for game. With some players paying nothing. Some paying a little bit. And a few “whales” paying a lot. A few games are more predatory. Taking advantage of the sense of accomplishment in exchange for a credit card number. Or offering an advantage over other players in exchange for money. This works especially well with children, so check your parental settings.
Treat a free game like a free demo. If you like a game there’s nothing wrong with spending a bit on it to enhance your enjoyment. But be mindful of how much you spend. There are lots of other games out there you’ll like, too.
These are games you have to buy to download, install, and play. The downside is there’s a price tag between you and trying out the game. The upside is the one time buy is usually all you need to pay. There’s no ads to deal with. Any in-app purchases should be for optional items. Such as character skins or background appearances. You may need to buy extra content. But don’t worry about that until you finish the included content. Then decide if you want more or want to move on.
Check reviews in the app store before you make a decision. With more popular games you can find videos on YouTube of others playing the game.
If you don’t like the game you can request a refund. Your best chances are with a more recent purchase. And not a lot of play time in the game.
Controller for Mobile Gaming
For more involved games you can connect a game controller to your phone. Turning it into a mini console experience. You can try a controller from a gaming console you already own. Or get something made with your phone in mind.
Look for any wired controllers using Lightning connector. Or wireless controllers using Bluetooth and listed as MFi (Made for iOS). The latest Bluetooth enabled Xbox and PlayStation DualShock controllers work with iPhone. But the Nintendo Pro Controller does not.
Wired controllers should work on connect. Wireless controllers pair using Bluetooth. Like pairing any other Bluetooth device to your iPhone.
- Experience the enhanced comfort and feel of the Xbox wireless controller
- Features a light grey design with green accents
- Play your favorite games on Windows 10 PCs and tablets; Plus upto twice the wireless range (tested using the Xbox One S Console)
- Stay on target with textured grip; Compatible With: Xbox One X, Xbox One S, Xbox One, Windows 10. Includes Bluetooth technology for gaming on Windows 10 PCs and tablets
- MSRP $64.99
- Precision control: The feel, shape, and sensitivity of the Dualshock 4's analog sticks and trigger buttons have been enhanced to offer players absolute control for all games on PlayStation 4
- Sharing at your fingertips: The addition of the share button makes sharing your greatest gaming moments as easy as a push of a button
- New ways to Play: Revolutionary features like the touch pad, integrated light bar, and built-in speaker offer exciting new ways to experience and interact with your games
- Charge Efficiently: The Dualshock 4 wireless controller can be easily be recharged by plugging it into your PS4 system, even when on standby, or with any standard charger with a micro-USB port
- Victory Royale is in your hands with the fortnite ready Nimbus controller
- Enjoy a true wireless console experience on your iOS device or Mac via Bluetooth 4.1
- Compatible Devices iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S, iPad Mini 4, iPad Mini 3, iPad Mini 2, iPad (4TH Generation), iPad Air 2, iPod Touch (6TH Generation) and Apple TV (4TH Generation)
- Pressure sensitive buttons and familiar ergonomic console layout
- Recharges via Lightning cable for 40+ hours of nonstop gaming
- THE ONLY MFI CONTROLLER WITH L3 R3: Rotor Riot offers the ONLY mfi certified gamepad controller on the market with L3 R3 functionality, and is compatible with many of your favorite games
- LAG AND LATENCY FREE: Experience uninterrupted gameplay with no lag time or latency with our wired controller. Be able to compete in your battle royale games with agility and clear picture without skips, glitch, or blur
- CHARGE AS YOU PLAY: Our latest version offers pass through charging for unlimited gaming without draining your iphone or ipad. Forget the batteries, just plug and play
- COMPATIBLE WITH OVER 1000 GAMES: Our affiliate app, Ludu Mapp, is compatible with over 1,000 apps and games. Enjoy your favorite battle royale games like Fortnite, Call Of Duty/COD and Portal Knight with this compatible device. Our affiliate app is available on the iOS App Store for download to sync up to your game of choice
- IOS COMPATIBILITY: Our mobile gamepad connects with all lightning connected Apple devices running iOS 7 or later. Enjoy your favorite games from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod. Have an Android? Try our other Android option
Stick with wireless Bluetooth controllers listing support for Android. Search the reviews to see if anyone mentions your particular model phone. The latest Bluetooth enabled Xbox and PlayStation DualShock controllers work with Android. The Nintendo Pro Controller also works, provided you’re using Android 10 or later.
Wireless controllers pair using Bluetooth. Like pairing any other Bluetooth device to your Android.
- Ergonomic multi-function button layout - for expert control and advanced customization
- Hair trigger mode - for the competitive advantage
- Adjustable phone mount - for the best gaming experience at any angle
- For the best gaming experience at any angle - soft cushioned touch with tactile feedback
- Mobile app configuration - for Easy control at your fingertips
- Victory Royale is in your hands on Android mobile with the Fortnite ready Stratus XL
- Play any controller enabled game on Android, Windows, Steam, and VR with Microsoft’s X Input and Direct Input
- Dedicated Home and Back buttons for seamless gaming on Android and PC
- Upto 40 hours of nonstop wireless gaming with two included AA batteries
- Bluetooth adapter sold separately
- 🎮【Plug & Play】You can start playing right after getting the Gamepad to your hands. 3.0 wireless transmission can support 6-8 meters wide range of control from the operation.
- 🎮【Wide Compatibility】Support android 3.2 above system. Compatible with vast majority of android tablet PCs.
- 🎮【Ergonomics Design】Based on ergonomics and designed for the most comfortable thumb position. Ensure you optimal feeling when playing
- 🎮【Safe and stable】Built-in lithium battery. After charging, it can be sustainable for 20 hours.
- 🎮【Telescopic stand】With the telescopic stand, the phone can be put in the stand (maximum support for 6-inch mobile phone).
- Take your game sessions up a notch with the Nintendo Switch Pro Controller
- Includes motion controls, HD rumble, built in amiibo functionality, and more
- Comes with charging cable (USB C to USB A)
- Hit the road with the definitive version of Mario Kart 8 and play anytime, anywhere! Race your friends or battle them in a revised battle mode on new and returning battle courses
- Play locally in up to 4 player multiplayer in 1080p while playing in TV Mode. Every track from the Wii U version, including DLC, makes a glorious return.;Number of Players: up to 12 players; ESRB Content: ESRB Content Description:Comic Mischief; Genre: Racing
Mobile Gaming On Your TV
With the right hardware you can mirror your phone’s screen onto your TV. Combined with a wireless controller you can get a console gaming experience. For a lot less cost.
Amazon Fire Stick
- Supports screen mirroring with Android
- Third party apps available for screen mirroring with iPhone, but not officially supported
- Supports screen mirroring with Android
- Supports casting (app dependent) with iPhone