Glossary

Casual Games

Casual mobile games

What is a casual game?

Casual games are a mobile game genre that is designed for everyone and anyone and have simple rules, shorter sessions, and a low barrier to entry. Casual games employ a number of monetization strategies, however they tend to rely on a free-to-play model that monetizes through in-app purchases and in-game ads.

There are many sub-categories within casual games including: match-3, endless runners, education, trivia, puzzle, hidden objects, adventure, word games, board games, card games, and more.

In AppsFlyer’s H2 2019 Performance Index, ironSource was ranked the #1 ad network for casual games - driving the most volume and highest-quality users for casual game developers.

Best casual games for Android in 2020

  • Candy Crush by King: Candy Crush crashed the App Store party in 2012 as a F2P game with IAPs from the start. In just one year, Candy Crush became the highest grossing mobile app, making about $1M per day worldwide from consumers. The game generates high revenue by offering committed players the chance to buy boosters that help to pass difficult levels.
  • Temple Run by Imangi: Released in 2011 on iOS and then in 2012 on Android, Temple Run is an endless runner game in which the main character is being chased by evil monkeys.
  • Fruit Ninja by Halfbrick Studios: Fruit Ninja was released in 2010, and within a few months garnered more than 4 million installs. In 2015, the app passed 1 billion downloads.
  • Homescapes by Playrix: Playrix released Homescapes in 2017. Homescapes is a match-3 puzzle game, and is the sequel to Plaryix’s game Gardenscapes.
  • Subway Surfers by SYBO and Kiloo: Launched in 2012, Subway Surfers was named the mobile game of the decade, #2 most downloaded game of all time by App Annie, and passed the 2 billion install mark in 2018.
  • My Talking Tom by Outfit7: Outfit7 launched My Talking Tom in 2013. It’s a Tamagotchi-style mobile game, in which users need to care for their cat Tom. In 2019, the My Talking Tom franchise, which includes other games, passed 10 billion downloads.
  • 8 Ball Pool by Miniclip: 8 Ball Pool is a billiards themed simulation game that’s also multi-player, meaning users can play with their friends as well. First launched on the web in 2010, Miniclip then moved it over to iOS and Android. Listen to our podcast with Miniclip.

  • Free casual games that you can try today

  • Merge Dragons by Gram Games: Merge Dragons is a puzzle adventure game, in which users solve puzzles to help them collect and hatch their dragons. Its sequel, Merge Magic! was released in 2019. Listen to our podcast with Gram Games
  • Dragon City by Social Point: Social Point released Dragon City in 2012, and was ranked the #2 game by Facebook the following year. Listen to our podcast with Social Point
  • Cookie Jam by Jam City: Cookie Jam is a match-3 puzzle game, and is one of Jam City’s highest grossing games. Listen to our podcast with Jam City
  • Lily’s Garden by Tactile Games: Lily’s Garden is a match-3 blast game, in which users need to help Lily renovate her great-aunt’s garden. Read our Q&A with Tactile Games
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