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Lumines: Puzzle & Music and 5 more top console to iOS conversions

By , on September 6, 2016

Lumines: Puzzle & Music is out now on iOS, and it serves as a timely reminder of what a truly great block-dropping puzzle game this was when it first dropped on PSP way back in 2004.

The concept is simple - form large areas of colour by rotating and shifting four-block clumps, with each block conforming to one of two colours.

As this is happening, a timeline sweeps along the bottom of the screen according to the techno track playing in the background, granting you precious time to assemble larger combos before they are cleared.

This is undoubtedly the best mobile version of Lumines yet, which got us to thinking about other top notch console to iOS conversions. Whether they involved a minor control-based tweak or a wholesale overhaul, each of these games does justice to the original.


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Many a console conversion comes a cropper at the control stage. The question of how to make a game designed for physical controls work on touch is a tough one to answer.

Supergiant Games managed it with Bastion, a beautiful action-RPG with a novel live-narrated plot. You play a mysterious kid who awakes post-apocalypse and attempts to put his world back together - quite literally - by bashing goons and collecting trinkets.

You have a choice of virtual controls, which actually don't completely suck thanks to the game's slower paces, and a semi-automated touch-to-move system that makes the game feel completely different.

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

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We're unlikely to ever get a Mario Kart game on iOS, but with the arrival of Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed that isn't the tragedy it used to be.

This is a true console-quality arcade kart racer, built upon the foundations of the handheld version. It's power slide-heavy gameplay, which sees you racing around twisty tracks that flit between ground, air, and water, works very well indeed - especially if you have access to a compatible control pad.

Yes, the IAPs are a little annoying. But other than that, this is a super slick casual racer with stacks of content.

Ridge Racer Slipstream

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Here's another super-slick arcade racer. The Ridge Racer series is legendary, and this mobile version does an extraordinary amount of justice to it.

Bandai Namco appears to have dismantled a PS3/PS Vita-era Ridge Racer game and reassembled it for mobile play. It's managed to translate the game's distinctively snappy rear-out handling model to the iPhone's accelerometer or virtual controls, while the visuals are appropriately gaudy - and move along at a fair old lick.

Again, IAPs are a bit of a bind, but there's plenty of game here to make up for that fact.

Joe Danger

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Before No Man's Sky, Hello Games could be found making polished arcade stunt games via the Joe Danger series.

An early sign that the company had a little more ambition than your average indie came with the mobile version of its early console hit. Rather than cram a compromised version onto iOS with a dodgy virtual control system, Hello completely rethought and rebuilt it for mobile play.

The result plays like the slickest, deepest autorunning platformer you've ever played. It's brilliant.


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We often give direct console to iOS conversions a bit of a hard time. That's because they're generally compromised, lazy affairs with sub-optimal virtual controls.

Limbo is different. Yes, it's essentially Playdead's original console indie hit with a set of touchscreen controls. But the key here is that the original game can take it.

While it's a platformer, Limbo is a lot slower paced than, say, a Sonic game. It's more about the creepy monochrome atmosphere and tricky physics-based puzzles. All Playdead needed to do was create a faithful conversion, and that's precisely what it's done.