The top 50 mobile games of 2022 (so far)
What are the top 50 mobile games of 2022 so far? I thought you’d never ask!
Globally we’ve collectively downloaded more than 70 billion mobile apps so far in 2022 and more than half of them are games. While apps finally surpassed games in the U.S. for the first time ever in terms of revenue, the reality is that both globally and in both the U.S., games are the vast majority of smartphone downloads and massively significant in terms of mobile revenue.
All of which means: it’s time to share the top 50 games of 2022 so far.
Most downloaded mobile games so far in 2022
So far, according to SensorTower data, the top games of 2022 by downloads are pretty jammed with familiar names:
- Subway Surfers ~82 million downloads
- Garena Free Fire ~75 million downloads
- Stumble Guys ~46 million downloads
- Bridge Race ~45 million downloads
- Ludo King ~44 million downloads
- Roblox ~41 million downloads
- Tall Man Run ~39 million downloads
- Race Master 3D ~37 million downloads
- Candy Crush Saga ~36 million downloads
- Fill The Fridge ~35 million downloads
But are the most downloaded games the top ones?
Each of those mobile games has a lot of downloads, but number of installs alone can’t be enough to make the list of the top 50 mobile games of 2022. Sure, scale is interesting — how many installs a game achieved — but engagement and active players and actual usage is probably much more important. One of the ways to measure that is revenue: do players playing these mobile games love them enough to lay out cold hard cash? Are these games good enough to pull out your credit card? (Or, yes, allow Apple or Google to take another little chunk out of your bank account.)
Perhaps the best way to determine the best games of 2022 is a combination of both:
- how many installs a game received
- how much gameplay — and therefore revenue — it’s generating
That combination is important.
A top game should still be relevant to new players: it should be adding new people, or else it’s just slowly dying. In addition, it should also keep existing players engaged, interested, and having fun for at least months, and preferentially years.
That makes it fresh enough for newbies, and still interesting for veterans.
The reality is that it is only the very unusual, extraordinary game that gets released years ago — even a decade ago, Subway Surfers! — and is still big. It’s an even more extraordinary game, like Clash of Clans, Roblox, or Call of Duty, that is still at or near the top of the revenue charts years and years after its initial release.
iOS, then Android, then combined
First, we’ll look at iOS.
iOS might seem small. After all, it only accounts for about 20% of global downloads: 8 billion in Q2 2022 to Android’s 27 billion, according to SensorTower data. But even so, iOS still takes credit for more than half of all in-app mobile revenue … thanks largely to the geographies where Apple owns market share: typically richer countries in North America, Europe, and certain parts of Asia.
Then we’ll look at Android, where the vast majority of app and game installs happen, especially in massive Android-centric countries like India. (And China, but data is hard to come by there thanks to the proliferation of third-party app stores.)
And finally, we’ll combine scores to arrive at an overall list of top 50 games of 2022 so far.
Data will be US-centric (sorry!) but perhaps we’ll be able to do other countries or regions later. For installs, I’m looking at recent data from Apptopia: games that are hot right now, but the top grossing component of the score will bias towards games with some track record. And I’m weighting the scores about 60/40 in favor of revenue as a stronger engagement metric.
iOS: top 50 games of 2022 so far
Only 8 games are on both the top 50 downloads list and the top 50 revenue list in Apptopia’s data:
- Call of Duty: Mobile
- Candy Crush Saga
- Coin Master
- Pokémon GO
- Stumble Guys
Naturally, they’re heavily featured in the top 50 games for iOS:
|Rank||Game||Combined score for downloads & revenue|
|2||Candy Crush Saga||159|
|4||Call of Duty: Mobile||146|
|9||Dragon Ball Z Dokkan Battle||97|
|13||Clash of Clans||90|
|14||Top War: Battle Game||89|
|17||Garena Free Fire||86|
|18||Hero Wars – Fantasy idle RPG||83|
|19||Candy Crush Soda Saga||82|
|20||Puzzles & Survival||81|
|21||State of Survival: Zombie War||80|
|25||Jackpot Party – Casino Slots||76|
|27||Slotomania Slots Vegas Casino||74|
|28||Age of Origins: Tower Defense||73|
|29||Lightning Link Casino Slots||72|
|30||RAID: Shadow Legends||71|
|32||Clear the Lot!||70|
|34||Parking Jam 3D||69|
|35||Solitaire Grand Harvest||69|
|38||Mexican Train Dominoes||67|
|40||Count Masters: Crowd Runner 3D||66|
|41||Rise of Kingdoms||66|
|42||Fill the Fridge!||65|
|43||Marvel Contest of Champions||65|
|44||Cashman Casino Las Vegas Slots||64|
|45||Collect Em All! Clear the Dots||64|
|46||Apex Legends Mobile||63|
|47||World Series of Poker||63|
|48||Dragon Ball Legends||62|
Interestingly, 7 of these games are gambling, slots, or casino games, which just highlights how big mashups have become in mobile gaming.
And many of them are games that have had a significant life span, including:
- The first versions of Roblox were released in 2006, before the App Store (!!)
- Call of Duty: Mobile is part of a franchise that launched in 2003
- Pokémon GO was released in 2015, meaning it’s now 7 years old
- Clash of Clans was launched in 2012
- And of course the always-massive King titles such as Candy Crush Saga and Candy Crush Soda Saga also have their genesis in 2012 (and the original, Candy Crush Saga, now has over a trillion levels played)
- Evony has been around (in different forms!) since 2009
Android: top 50 games of 2022 so far
Possibly because Android is more geographically diverse in market share than iOS, only 3 games show up on both most-downloaded and highest-grossing lists:
- Candy Crush Saga
- Coin Master
Here are the top 50 games for Android so far in 2022:
|Rank||Game||Combined score for downloads & revenue|
|2||Candy Crush Saga||143|
|7||Bingo Blitz – Bingo Game||93|
|8||RAID: Shadow Legends||92|
|9||Jackpot Party Casino Slots||91|
|11||Candy Crush Soda Saga||89|
|12||Solitaire Grand Harvest||88|
|17||State of Survival: Zombie War||83|
|18||Top War: Battle Game||82|
|19||Puzzles & Survival||81|
|20||Dragon Ball Z Dokkan Battle||80|
|21||Slotomania Slots Casino Games||79|
|25||Marvel Strike Force: Squad RPG||75|
|26||Cashman Casino Las Vegas Slots||74|
|27||Craft School: Monster Class||74|
|28||Lotsa Slots – Casino Games||73|
|29||Parking Jam 3D||73|
|30||POP! Slots Vegas Casino games||72|
|31||Empires & Puzzles: Match-3 RPG||71|
|33||Cash Frenzy – Casino Slots||70|
|36||Tiki Solitaire TriPeaks||69|
|39||Call of Duty: Mobile||67|
|41||Goods Match 3D – Triple Master||66|
|42||June’s Journey: Hidden Objects||66|
|43||Garena Free Fire||65|
|46||Rise of Kingdoms: Lost Crusade||64|
|47||Last Shelter: Survival||63|
|48||Pull the Pin||63|
|49||DoubleDown Casino Vegas Slots||62|
|50||Fill The Fridge||62|
Once again, Roblox and Candy Crush Saga are #1 and #2 together. And, just like on iOS, 7 of the top 50 games are casino/Vegas/gambling games.
More striking, perhaps, is the overlap between iOS top games and Android top games. A full 32 games are on both the top 50 iOS and top 50 Android games lists, meaning that 64% of the top 100 is common to both major mobile platforms.
That makes sense on a lot of levels: good games rise to the top, big marketing budgets help make both the iOS and Android versions of a game to get popular, and everyone releases for both major platforms. Also, for battle games that require a critical mass of players to form clans or teams, or to match up in fights, being big on one platform tends to help a game get big on the other.
Plus, of course, when a game gets popular it starts to generate its own buzz, and both people and platforms tend to start promoting it.
Combined iOS and Android: top 50 mobile games of 2022 so far
At last, here are the top 50 mobile games of 2022 so far based on Android and iOS and number of installs plus amount of revenue, which is a proxy for players, usage, and engagement.
Completely unsurprisingly given their positioning in both the iOS and Android top lists, Roblox and Candy Crush Saga are #1 and #2, respectively. Coin Master, Fishdom, and Evony round out the top 5 games of 2022 so far.
|Rank||Game||Combined score for iOS & Android|
|2||Candy Crush Saga||302|
|7||Call of Duty: Mobile||213|
|11||Dragon Ball Z Dokkan Battle||177|
|14||Candy Crush Soda Saga||171|
|15||Top War: Battle Game||171|
|17||Jackpot Party – Casino Slots||167|
|18||RAID: Shadow Legends||163|
|19||State of Survival: Zombie War||163|
|20||Puzzles & Survival||162|
|21||Solitaire Grand Harvest||157|
|24||Slotomania Slots Casino Games||153|
|25||Garena Free Fire||151|
|28||Clash of Clans||149|
|29||Parking Jam 3D||142|
|31||Cashman Casino Las Vegas Slots||138|
|33||Marvel Strike Force: Squad RPG||134|
|34||Lightning Link Casino Slots||133|
|35||Empires & Puzzles Match 3 RPG||127|
|36||Fill The Fridge||127|
|37||Cash Frenzy – Casino Slots||125|
|40||Collect Em All! Clear the Dots||117|
|42||Count Masters: Crowd Runner 3D||113|
|43||Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes||113|
|44||Star Trek Fleet Command||111|
Amazingly, Pokémon GO continues its massive and perhaps unpredictable run of success. Pokémon GO is exceptional for perhaps one other thing: the least amount of paid marketing to kick it off, thanks to the strength of the Pokémon brand and massive initial virality when it launched.
Wordle is still major, months after its brush with virality, and Woodoku carries the torch for Sudoku, but in a new, creative, and impressive way.
Just for fun, Star Trek and Star Wars are battling it out right next to each other in the #43 and #44 spot, and while Marvel Contest of Champions doesn’t quite make the combined iOS and Android list, Marvel Strike Force: Squad RPG does, thanks to its strength on Android primarily.
And in the battle of Playrix Games super-popular ‘scapes offerings, Homescapes at #10 leads Gardenscapes at #16.
Closing thoughts on the top games of 2022
There are plenty more ways to find and list the top games of any year, including 2022.
My current favorite game is 6 years old and didn’t make the list, for one thing, and another option would be to check all the game reviews of the year and see which ones are the highest rated by reviewers as well as the highest rated on Google Play and the App Store.
It’s also interesting to think about why a game might make the most downloaded but not the most profitable lists, and vice versa. Top grossing games, for instance, might be in a monetization phase: they’ve gathered a huge number of players, and now they need to make some money back for all their development and marketing. And top games by installs that don’t hit the top grossing list might just be in a category that doesn’t monetize super well — casual games, I’m looking at you — or might be focusing on scale rather than revenue.
In any case, if your favorite game didn’t make the list, that’s probably because with 10 million apps in Google Play and the iOS App Store, there’s a lot of choice. There’s something for everyone.
And that’s probably a good thing.