I grew up playing sports video games on many editions of video game consoles and personal computers. I enjoyed playing the games, but I could not take them around with me. Since I bought my iPad early in 2012, I have played as many sports game applications as I could find both at home and on the go. Obviously, I have not tried them all yet, but these are my five favorites so far.
This is not only the best soccer mobile app that I have played, but it also one of the best soccer games on any gaming device. This game let me get used to the virtual joystick before trying other games because of the constant player movement and aiming of shots and passes. It is one of the first game apps I have tried with HD graphics, which make the fields look amazing. I love the close-ups of the players arguing the calls or the grimaces on their faces when they miss an easy shot. My only complaint is that I keep getting called for fouls, and the referee is not ashamed to make those calls.
I do not like watching extreme sports on television, but for a fun change, I like NBA JAM. The games are short, making them perfect for filling in a small amount of time or playing many games in one sitting. I like the high-flying, long-range slams that we might find at the NBA slam dunk competitions. I turn up the volume for the most explosive slams, crowd cheers, and announcer screams. The players' facial expressions crack me up. NBA JAM is easy to learn to play but tough to put down.
This was the first sports app that I tried that came from a major sports video game company such as 2K Sports. It parallels very well with its popular counterparts on the home consoles. NBA 2K12's full version does all that the console versions do including full-season play with playoffs and the Michael Jordan Challenge with past NBA legends. The graphics and announcing are as realistic as I have seen and heard in a basketball video game. I like the commentaries that praise and criticize player performances and coaching decisions.
I like fast-paced sports games, and this is the fastest mobile sports game app that I have tried so far. The graphics of the overhead camera angle look very real, and the players move fluently. The sound effects include crowd cheering, booing, and even silence at the proper moments. The sound effects also include loud puck slaps and crunching body checks. With the volume up high, it sounds a lot like a real hockey game. The control buttons are together and easy to identify, but the virtual joystick is tough to aim. That adds to the challenge, so when I come close to making a shot, I want to keep trying. I do not win the game much, but I like playing
In addition to considering it a great golf game, I rate Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12 #1 because I can actually putt well on it. On other golf games, I can sometimes hit a par-5 green in two shots and have a chance at an eagle, but the putting drives me crazy. With this game's swing meter and indicator, I can sink that long putt and make that eagle -- or at least get close enough for a birdie. I like creating my own player, earning career points to improve skills, and working my way up to compete against Tiger Woods or other golf greats. The extra challenges such as Closest to the Pin make the game even more interesting.
Looking for more
I will continue to find and play the best mobile sports video game applications available, newer and older. My list could change as I find more games, but these are my five favorites among those I have tried so far.
iTunes Preview, Individual Games (Linked Above), itunes.apple.com.
Raymond grew up in the days of Atari and watched the progression of home video game consoles. He has played sports games on most consoles and personal computers as they became available. He now owns multiple game systems and enjoys most professional sports games. Follow Raymond on Twitter@RayBureau
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