Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android games that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous week or so. Today's list is broken up into several segments, ranging from best, average, to mediocre. So whether you're looking for the best games of quality or are simply looking for the latest free-to-play gacha titles, you're covered. This week I have the first three Final Fantasy pixel-art remasters, the arrival of Square Enix's new gacha game NieR Reincarnation, as well as Konami's cash-grab Contra Returns. So without further ado, here are the new and notable Android games released during the last week.

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Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

Best Games

Titles that offer fair pricing, enjoyable gameplay, polished interfaces, or are intriguing

Sky Gamblers - Infinite Jets

Sky Gamblers - Infinite Jets is the latest entry in Atypical's Sky Gamblers air combat game series. While Infinite Jets landed on iOS four years ago, it only just this week landed on the Play Store. So yes, this is an older title, but it still looks and plays great. There are over 100 planes to choose from, and you can choose to play PvE or PvP. All around, this is a solid flight combat game despite its age, and it's monetized well to boot. There's honestly a lot here to like, so don't miss out.

Monetization: $4.99 / no ads / IAPs $0.99 apiece

Developer: Atypical Games
Price: $4.99+

Adventure Reborn: story game point and click

Adventure Reborn is a point-and-click adventure game. It takes place in a post-apocalyptic world that's filled with amusing and zany characters. You'll fill the role of a girl with a mysterious past tasked with saving her parents, and like most point and clicks, you'll hunt for clues and solve puzzles to progress the story. Only the first chapter is available right now, but more are coming soon, so if you'd like to get in on the ground floor, now's your chance.

Monetization: free / contains ads / no IAPs

SpellTower

SpellTower is an older word game that was delisted from the Play Store a while ago, but Noodlecake has seen fit to update the game for a re-release. This time around, GPG is enabled, and there are some new modes, which means there's even more content than before. So if you're looking for an enjoyable twist on word search games, SpellTower is a fantastic mobile classic that's finally making a triumphant return.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs $4.99 apiece

Price: Free+

Scuderia Racing

Scuderia Racing is a top-down racer that offers four different modes. Single players can expect to choose from racing in through an entire season, individual races, as well as jump into a free-racing mode at any time. There's also split-screen multiplayer for those looking to race friends locally on a single device. Still, the game is a little rough around the edges, so things like knowing which car is yours at the start of a race aren't always clear. All in all, this is a fun timewaster that will hopefully see more polish in the coming months.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $2.49 - $6.99

Developer: Ice Vision Dev
Price: Free

Average Games

Titles that may not be the best-of-the-best, but still offer fun and interesting mechanics

FINAL FANTASY

Android Police coverage: Final Fantasy I, II, and III launch on Android a day early as pixel-art remasters

This week we saw Final Fantasy 1, 2, and 3 released on the Play Store as pixel-art remasters. Of course, this is the listing for the first game, and it offers all-new pixel graphics along with a fresh UI for touch controls. This UI is pretty good, though the font stinks. Thankfully the touch controls work much better than the previous version (now removed from the Play Store). Cloud saving and quicksaving are both present, so you can easily play on the go. Still, controller support is completely absent, and Square's track record on mobile is absolutely awful, making the high price tag really tough to swallow since Square has a history of inadequate support for its premium releases. So while the game itself is pretty good, the price tag and possibility that Square will abandon the title just like the previous version are definitely a concern.

Monetization: $11.99 / no ads / no IAPs

Price: $11.99

FINAL FANTASY II

Android Police coverage: Final Fantasy I, II, and III launch on Android a day early as pixel-art remasters

Final Fantasy II is the second title in the series, and it has been remastered with new 2D pixel graphics. Much like the first game, controller support is absent, though cloud saving is included, along with quicksaves that are convenient for on-the-go play. Still, the high price tag and Square's history of lackluster support for its premium releases should scare away most fans since many of us have been burned in the past by this developer. This is why the old version of FF II is now absent from the Play Store. Square would like us to buy the game once again if we want to see support, which isn't even a guarantee.

Monetization: $11.99 / no ads / no IAPs

Price: $11.99

FINAL FANTASY III

Android Police coverage: Final Fantasy I, II, and III launch on Android a day early as pixel-art remasters

The last Final Fantasy remaster to arrive this week is Final Fantasy III. Oddly enough, the 3D remake is still listed on the Plays Store, but for those that wanted to play something closer to the original 2D graphics, now they can, but it comes at a high price. Unlike FF I and II, FF III is $17.99 despite the fact it underwent the same remaster treatment as the previous two titles. Why this title should demand a higher price, I don't know, though there is a touch more depth compared to the last two games. What I do know is that Square's history of lackluster support when asking these high prices makes this a tough sell. Like the other two games released as remasters, there's no controller support, but you do get the new UI with quality touch controls, cloud save support, plus a convenient quicksave option.

Monetization: $17.99 / no ads / no IAPs

Price: $17.99

NieR Reincarnation

Android Police coverage: NieR Re[in]carnation lands on Android with one small caveat

NieR Re[in]carnation is a highly-polished RPG from Yoko Taro, the very person behind all of the mainline NieR games on consoles and PCs. Of course, this is a free-to-play release, and it's a gacha game, but it's actually pretty fun even though it contains auto-combat and PvP that could be considered pay-to-win. This is a game for fans of the series, and it offers superb music, not to mention an interesting story that explores the tragic history behind several weapons. So if you're looking for lore, there's plenty here, and unlike most gacha games, the balancing is on point, which is why gameplay doesn't ever feel like a chore. All in all, this is one of Square's better efforts when it comes to F2P releases, so if you're a fan of the series or enjoy casual mobile RPGs, there's enough fun here to make the install worth it. Just watch out for those greedy IAPs.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $0.99 - $79.99

Price: Free+

Pool Heroes

Pool Heroes is currently completely free to play, though it's probably in testing, so this may not last, at least if the rest of the publisher's catalog is anything to go by. As it stands, this is a top-down pool game where you can play online, though the lack of a leaderboard and player stats is annoying since you can't track your gameplay. Still, it can be fun to play a few rounds between friends, and since Pool Heroes isn't monetized yet, now's probably the best time to check it out.

Monetization: free / no ads / no IAPs

Developer: YesGnome, LLC
Price: Free

PAW Patrol Rescue World

PAW Patrol Rescue World offers a bunch of mini-games that are easy for kids to pick up and play. There are two free characters that anyone can play with, but the rest have a price attached, which is where this game makes its money (by selling new characters to players). Still, this type of monetization allows anyone to play the game, which is great for testing to know if the extra character purchases are worth the investment. So far, user reviews are good, and I have to say I agree. This is an enjoyable children's game that won't break the bank unless you just have to own every character in the game. While the mini-game gameplay isn't groundbreaking by any means, it should appeal to children easily.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $0.99 - $4.99

Developer: Budge Studios
Price: Free+

Mediocre Games

Titles that are buggy, unpolished, or offer aggressive monetization

Contra Returns

Android Police coverage: Contra blasts its way onto mobile as a side-scrolling shooter, and so far fans aren't happy

Have you ever wanted to play a Contra sidescrolling shooter that was filled with horrible monetization? Well, Konami and Tencent have granted your wish with the release of Contra Returns. This is a blatant cash-grab that offers two different kinds of gacha, both for heroes and weapons, plus a VIP system that rewards big spenders, not to mention many other monetization avenues, such as forced grind walls (that pop up very early) and boatloads of cosmetics. Contra Returns is a perfect example of why mobile games have a bad wrap. Most are like this, cheap, cynical garbage.

Monetization: free / no ads / IAPs from $0.99 - $109.99

Developer: PROXIMA BETA
Price: Free+

Rec Room

Rec Room is a social gaming space where you can build games and play them with your friends. As you would expect, there's a heavy emphasis on cosmetics and customization, though the lack of control settings means you're stuck with the game's default touch controls, which aren't the best. Performance is also lackluster, so the game needs some serious optimization for mobile. Of course, this is a cross-platform release, so you can play with friends no matter their device of choice, which is always lovely to see. Still, the performance woes, iffy controls, and greedy monetization leave a lot to be desired.

Monetization: free / no ads / IAPs from $4.99 - $49.99

Developer: Rec Room
Price: Free+

Tears of Themis

Tears of Themis is the latest release from miHoYo Limited, the same studio behind Genshin Impact. This is an Otome dating sim, a niche genre designed to appeal in the same way waifu collection games do, but thanks to the additional detective mechanics, there's some fun to be had outside of dating a bunch of hunky dudes. So if you're a fan of games like Ace Attorney, you may find some fun in the release since it offers a similar evidence collection, though it's still centered around dating a selection of pretty boys, which is why it's monetized so poorly.

Monetization: free / no ads / IAPs from $0.99 - $99.99

Developer: miHoYo Limited
Price: Free+

AlchemyKnight

AlchemyKnight comes from 111%, a developer that has a penchant for creating unique casual games. This is an RPG that offers auto everything, so it's basically an idle game, though you can tap on skills to gain an advantage while battling, so there is some interactivity beyond deep-diving into the game's menus. Sadly AlchemyKnight is monetized poorly, with many different avenues to spend money through the game's premium in-game currency. So all of the pitfalls of casual free-to-play games are here, which is sad to see since this developer used to offer content that was actually priced appropriately.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs from $0.99 - $99.99

Developer: 111%
Price: Free+

My Dog - Pet Dog Game Simulator

My Dog is a pet simulator similar to a Tamagotchi game, where you'll take care of your pet by feeding, petting, and clothing all manner of adorable dogs. There are eight dogs to chose from when you start, and you can pay to unlock more, which is a general complaint from users that they have to pay cash to get the dogs they want. There's also a house decoration mechanic, so there are some life simulation mechanics in the mix, making for a game that's mostly centered around dressing up your dog and decorating your house. Seeing that the game is free-to-play with clear paywalls, it's hard to recommend the title even though it offers quality graphics and animations. The balancing is just too greedy.

Monetization: free / no ads / IAPs from $4.88 - $101.24

WTF Game Of The Week

Titles that make you say "WTF"

Clothes Thief

It's been a while since the last WTF game, but I knew I had a top contender when I saw Clothes Thief this week. It's not a game I recommend playing, thanks to the frequent ads and a focus on tricking people into clicking buttons that play even more ads. Despite the exploitative design, the gameplay revolves around ripping off people's clothes to find the specific types of garments you're tasked with collecting. It's a simple setup that begs the question, why exactly are we ripping the clothes of strangers? For that, I have no answer, though it's clear this is a game that offers a ridiculous theme that makes little to no sense, which is why Clothes Thief is a perfect WTF listing.

Monetization: free / contains ads / IAPs $2.99 apiece

Developer: Ketchapp
Price: Free+

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  • it has to be original, ground-breaking, well-reviewed, interesting, fun, etc - the cream of the crop

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