A good mobile game can make traveling by plane or public transit more enjoyable, but you usually need an internet connection to play most of them. So whether you’re sitting in a waiting room or taking a vacation to a remote location and have no internet, you’ll want iPhone games that work even if you’re offline.
Popular games like PUBG need an active data connection when you go into battle, and you need the internet to load a Roblox account. That said, there are plenty of games on iOS you can play offline, and we found several different types. So, here’s a list of the best offline iOS games you can play on your iPhone or iPad in several popular genres.
Note: Many of the games on our list need internet access at least once. You’ll need Wi-Fi to install the app, then to open it once and ensure the game downloads any assets, updates, or connects to Game Center. You’ll want to do this at home or somewhere with internet access before you head to the airport or out of cell range.
- Into the Dead 2: Journey through the zombie apocalypse in this action-adventure zombie shooter game. This is one of the most intense offline games you’ll find.
- Brothers in Arms 3: A World War II-era third-person shooter game where you battle with and command 12 “Brothers in Arms,” all with unique skills and weaponry. It’s like a multiplayer shooter you can play alone, without an internet connection.
- Plague Inc: Can you infect the world? Plague Inc. is a unique mix of high strategy, action, and terrifyingly realistic simulation all rolled into one.
- Grand Theft Auto Games: Did you know that all of the GTA mobile games work offline once you download the assets? Including the ultra-popular GTA 3.
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic: While Star Wars KOTOR is more of a role-playing game, it’s full of lightsaber action you don’t want to miss. Set 4000 years before the Galactic Empire, you’ll lead a party of heroes and villains in an attempt to save the galaxy.
- Subway Surfers: Like Temple Run and many other endless runner games, Subway Surfers works offline and is an excellent adventure game to pass the time.
- Minecraft: This game needs no introduction. As long as you’re not trying to play on a server or join friends, you can enjoy endless hours of building worlds or anything else you want in Minecraft — even offline.
- Badland (and Badland 2): Both the older original Badland and the second release are highly recommended and an absolute blast. It’s an action-adventure sidescroller that impressed us with its lovely yet gloomy atmosphere, fun sounds, and enjoyable content.
- Vector: This parkour-inspired action adventure game is one of the most enjoyable side-scrolling games available for iOS. It takes hours to master and even longer to finish.
- Alto’s Adventure: Both the Alto games are an absolute must-play. The first one has you snowboarding endlessly down a mountain, and it’s one of the most popular side-scrolling games to this day. It’s an endless runner with neat visuals and a fun soundtrack.
- Alto’s Odyssey: Odyssey is an endless runner like the original, only you’ll be sandboarding through the desert. Explore canyons, temples, and you can ride or grind towering rock walls in the sand. As expected, it, too, has a great soundtrack, and it’s perfect for an airplane ride.
- Journey: Explore the ancient, mysterious world of Journey as you soar above ruins and glide across sands to discover its secrets. This game is a beautiful classic adventure you can play and get some nostalgia if you ever enjoyed the original.
- Reigns: A card-based game with big consequences; every card you choose in Reigns will have massive effects on the kingdom you preside over, meaning every run-through will be different from the last.
- Fallout Shelter: This game was Bethesda’s first entry into iPhone gaming, and it won dozens of awards. And while it’s a little older, this strategy game is a must-play for any Fallout fan or someone looking for an excellent offline strategy game for iPhone.
- Texas Holdem Offline Poker: No wait, no limit, and no Wi-Fi poker or Holdem for anyone and everyone to enjoy.
- Valleys Between: Build a thriving, beautiful world full of life, developing communities, and discover the quiet mysteries of the valley in this unique offline strategy game.
- Machines at War 3: If you want an action strategy game that’ll keep you busy, give this a try. Build over 130 types of units, battle enemies, and enjoy one of the smoothest RTS offline iPhone games.
- Threes!: If you want to dive into an excellent puzzle game, this one is for you. While Threes! is an older title, it’s still worth recommending for the sheer excellence and difficulty as the small puzzle grows and grows on you.
- Monument Valley 2: While the first Monument Valley was great, and you should play it first, the second release is even more challenging, and we love it. Guide a mother and her child through a journey of pathways, illusions, and geometry in a delightful and award-winning puzzler. The soundtrack alone makes this worth playing.
- Two Dots: A beautifully designed puzzle adventure game that’ll keep you busy for hours on end. When this brainteaser first came out, it was the #1 game in over 100 countries, so now is a good time to try if you haven’t tried it yet.
- Flow Free: This next game is almost like the classic game Snake, only more exciting. Connect matching colors with pipes to create a flow. But don’t overlap or get too long, as it’ll be a challenge.
- Candy Crush: This is another game that needs no introduction. Candy Crush has been around forever, works offline, and continues to keep people entertained on flights everywhere.
- Bejeweled: Many classic mobile games are still floating around, still fun to play, and many of them, including the original Bejeweled, all work without Wi-Fi.
- The Room: This game is a physical and mental puzzler wrapped inside a mystery game, unlike anything we’ve played before. Sure, the graphics aren’t all that great, but everything else about The Room is as good as it gets. Plus, when you finish it, there are three other titles in the series.
- Horizon Chase—World Tour: Fans of old-school arcade racer games will absolutely love this title. It’s a retro racer that works offline without Wi-Fi and has nearly 100 tracks for you to race around in all its 16-bit glory.
- Asphalt 8 Airborne: The entire Asphalt series is excellent, but Asphalt 8: Airborne is still my all-time favorite. High-speed tracks, insane jumps, beautiful graphics for its age, and it’s a great time-waster while traveling or offline.
- CSR Racing 2: If you like to drift like the boys from Tokyo Drift, CSR Racing is for you. This game delivers console-like graphics, car tuning, and insane drifts to your iPhone. And yes, it works offline in select modes.
- Need for Speed: No Limits: Some of the best racing games for mobile all work offline, including NFS: No Limits. This is still one of the best mobile NFS games, so get ready to put the pedal to the metal.
- Real Racing 3: One of the most realistic and exciting racing games on mobile, Real Racing 3, is a simulator like no other. While we sit and wait for a fourth installment, you can enjoy this thrilling sim racer anywhere and everywhere with Formula 1 cars and more.
Whether you’re looking for casual fun, brainteasers, or gripping action games, these are some of our favorite offline games for iPhone or iPad. Just remember, you’ll want to download and open any of these games before going offline to ensure they’ll work and have everything fully loaded and ready to go.