Multiplayer online battle arena. That’s the definition of one of the most popular genres in recent years. MOBA games are staying on top in terms of popularity given that DOTA 2, and even more so, League of Legends continue to be the kings of the eSports. Although other genres are always trying to throw their hats into the ring in order to dominate the world of mobile video games, there’s no doubt that MOBAs still come out on top. That’s why we’ve decided to dedicate a few lines to the best MOBA games available on Android.
Battles lasting 25 minutes or longer, between two teams of 5 on 5. This could be the generic definition of MOBA games, although fans of the genre know that there’s much more to the story than this. The heroes in each one of the games that we list here are the real kings of the trade and mastering them is the key to win. Well, there’s another thing. The real key to victory lies in the team. A well-balanced group will be hard to defeat, no matter how well the 5 members of the opposite team play. Okay, that’s a little bit of a lie, too. There’s actually another crucial aspect to winning: patience. Patience to look at the time after a while and maintaining your focus on not dying too much. Sweet, sweet patience.
If you can keep your cool while playing a MOBA, then half the battle is won. That, and recognition from the rest of the people on your team. The extreme duration of many of the rounds is a hard pill to swallow for the mobile world, since the battles lasting more than 30 minutes can end up leaving your fingers numb. There are game modes that have tried to lighten the load, so to speak, but it’s not the same. Luckily, this hasn’t prevented MOBA from continuing to be one of the most-played genres. And that’s considering the fact that in recent years, we’ve witnessed the births of Battle Royales and Auto Chess. A movement that’s begun to tip the scales a bit. But we’re not here today to talk about the umpteenth clone of PUBG Mobile or the subgenre that spawned directly from MOBA games. It’s time to choose between one of the three lanes and start attacking enemy towers. We’ve paid special attention to new games from 2019, but without forgetting about the kings of the genre. So let’s get to it.
It’s hard to innovate within the MOBA genre without losing the essence. That’s why most games from the genre attempt to make changes in other aspects: visuals, cast of heroes, equipment purchases, etc. That said, these differences tend to be insignificant, since many of the ones listed here are complete clones of LoL, in every way. Vagary doesn’t stray too far from this formula, but at least it dares to use an artistic cartoon design that’s full of color. The title is still in beta, but we’re hoping it’ll come out of its shell soon enough. [Download]
When we put together a list like this, we try to add some black sheep to the mix that most people may not be familiar with. Speedy Gunfire attempts to shout from each one if its pixels that it’s different, even though the design of its characters is pretty generic and unimpressive. But at least you’re not going to play in 5vs5 rounds. Instead, the duels here are between six players. This makes for shorter battles, although the game has various game modes so that everyone can find one they like best. The 3vs3 mode in Speedy Gunfire will take you to vibrant battle fields where each hero’s death represents an even more painful loss for the whole battle. [Download]
It’s been three years since we began talking about Heroes Evolved, one of the totems of the mobile world that’s now expanded its boarders to computers around the world. This here is the umpteenth clone of LoL that copies the formula to a T: heroes everywhere, classic gameplay, and a community that’s up to par. This last one is a huge plus, considering the high competition that exists in these types of games. Once installed, you can get right down to business, since there are always 9 more people waiting to fight their way to victory. And the latest update brought with it a new Auto Chess mode. Here’s to making sure we don’t miss a single new feature from this success from Riot Games. [Download]
The arrival of Extraordinary Ones to the west has been excellent. Not only because it’s an incredibly high-quality game, but because this way we won’t get lost in the many versions of the game that exist. Because this title was released separately for Taiwan, China, and Japan. Not only this, but there have been custom campaigns according to the market, like the arrival of Saitama as a playable character in the Japanese version. But that’s enough formalities for now. The fact of the matter is that Extraordinary Ones is an excellent MOBA. Its visual anime style makes us cry for joy, as we say goodbye to the repetitious style of characters from League of Legends. We’d love to see more unique games, even if its only in the visuals, we’ve had enough copies to last us a lifetime. [Download]
Arena of Valor
What can we say about Arena of Valor that you don’t already know? It’s a total classic that has a huge company like Tencent behind it and a gigantic community of players. One of the originals in the genre for Android, with everything that comes with the territory: constant updates and an immense cast of heroes. It’s improved visually throughout the years, as well as in game modes: it now has quicker game modes for players who find games lasting 30+ minutes yawn-worthy. And yes, the character balances continue to better than most of the titles on this list. [Download]
Legend of Ace
Looking at the character design in Legend of Ace makes us doubt if we’re playing LoL, Mobile Legends, or Arena of Valor. We can’t blame this game from FUNCUBE, but instead the bad habit that comes from sticking too close to the original formula. And there’s actually some good thinking behind this idea, since the game is really fun. No, it may not be the most innovative game in the world, but 90% of the titles on this list haven’t broken away from the three original tracks. The good thing is that it’s a well-balanced game with a huge community of players ready to throw down at a moment’s notice. [Download]
Of all the MOBA games for smartphones, Vainglory is the most interesting case of them all. On paper, it appears to be just another clone of LoL, but the game stands out from its competitors with an unusually excellent fluidity for mobile devices and a dark visual style. It’s a title that allows crossplay with other systems, another strength that we can’t forget to mention. It’s probably the closest experience you’d get to playing a MOBA with a mouse and keyboard. And all this is using great touch controls that you’ll thoroughly enjoy. Yes, you’ve probably figured out that we’re Team Vainglory. [Download]
MARVEL Super War
Imagine the typical MOBA setting with its jungles and different monsters along the sides of the tracks. Now add Marvel superheroes to the screen, and let the fun begin. MARVEL Super War isn’t officially out yet but a few months ago we had the pleasure of trying out the Beta for Android. And boy did we love it. It’s still a conventional MOBA with skins of Captain America, Thor, Hulk, etc., but the care taken in the characters’ abilities is incredible. It’s all Marvel-scented and we’ve bitten our nails down to the quick since this non-specific tweet bidding adieu to the CBT back on June 10th. Here’s hoping it doesn’t take too much longer, for the sake of our nails, at least. [Download]
Alright, we know you’ve been waiting for this moment. A list about MOBAs just isn’t complete without Mobile Legends. This timeless MOBA continues to impress, maintaining its position as the number one most played game of all times. The reason for this reign is simple: it’s the most accessible game for all players. The 10-minute time limit per round gives a unique intensity to the genre. Plus, it works on the most mobile devices possible since it’s not too demanding tech-wise. Basically, it was the first MOBA for mobile devices that decided to offer short rounds. And there’s no doubt that this decision has carried it to the top. Many games have copied it since, but none has reached the same level of success. [Download]
Although we don’t put the games on this list into a strict order of preference, the game from NetEase is one of the titles that’s closest to our heart. It may not have as huge of a community as the cornerstones of the genre, but Onmyoji Arena is really special. This is because it has the artistic design of the original Onmyoji, infusing it with personality. This artistic mix from the Japanese legends is just too much to handle. In terms of gameplay, it’s the “same old, same old,” although the heroes and their special attacks are more spectacular than ever. And another thing that gets us is that the developers have wisely taken a step back: getting rid of the horrible Pay To Win in order to make it more fair for all players. [Download]