Top 15 Games for Your Apple Watch

Wearables appeared to be the next logical step in IoT technology. Many still scoff at them. They seem too gimmicky, ridiculous and too fashionably incongruous to succeed. For instance, look at how Google Glass crashed and burned. But in all honesty, that probably had to do more with the price tag than anything else. 

A watch’s primary function is no longer to tell the time. It’s a piece of functional jewelry that is there to complement and complete an outfit. But then Big Tech came along and gave us new reasons to look at our watches once again. 

Most smartwatches aren’t ideal for playing games on. This is due to their tiny screens and the fact that no one wants to look like an idiot standing around while tapping on their watch. If there’s any smartwatch that was made for wrist gaming, it’s the Apple Watch.

From its rectangular design to its clear OLED screen; if you want to be on the cutting edge of gaming, this is probably the best way to do it. In this guide, we’ll explore some of the best Apple Watch games available in 2019. Whether you’re downloading them to stay sharp or to show-off your watch’s capabilities, this guide has a little something for everyone. 

Top 15 Best Games for Your Apple Watch

The Apple Watch’s rectangular calculator-like face may make it the ideal smartwatch for gaming, but as you might expect, it doesn’t have a catalog of games that’s as dense or as varied as other iOS devices. So instead of separating and grouping the games on this list according to genre, we thought it would be better to create a single list that ranks the games based on enjoyability and functionality. 

#1 Pocket Bandit 

  • Genre: Puzzle 
  • Developer: Seele Games
  • Size: 42 MB
  • Release Date: December 19, 2016
  • Price: $0.99
Pocket Bandit

Sometimes a game’s impact and memorability aren’t in its story, graphics or soundtrack. Sometimes it is in the way it innovates and creatively incorporates the hardware of the platform that it is installed on. Pocket Bandit may be one of those games. The goal of the game is simple. You play as a safe-crack who needs to break into a couple of safes before the cops catch him.

 The combination of each safe is usually in the form of two or three numbers. In order to crack the combination, you’ll need to use your Apple Watch’s Digital Crown. You’ll need to use the Crown like a dial. You rotate the safe’s number combinations using it. When you get close to the right number, your Apple Watch will vibrate. This gives you a completely immersive experience. You feel as if you’re in the thief’s shoe. It’s a great way to lose track of your surroundings.           

#2 Trivia Check 

  • Genre: Trivia
  • Developer: Etermax
  • Size: 378.1 MB
  • Release Date: October 26, 2013
  • Price: Free
Trivia Check

Trivia Check is one of the most highly rated games in the Apple app store. It’s a cross-platform trivia game that’s available for iPhones, iPads, Apple Watches, and even iMessage. It’s ranked number three in trivia. You may know that there are a lot of trivia games in the Apple app store so what makes this one so different or special? Firstly, it comes in 20 different languages, so it has a multi-national appeal. It’s also well-designed and easy to navigate. There’s also an abundance of questions to answer which means you won’t run into repeat questions often.

The questions are separated into six different categories which include: geography, science, history, sports, art, and entertainment. If that isn’t enough, you can actually create custom questions of your own. The game is constantly being updated and tweaked. Which means there are new questions and features being added all the time. The game also allows you to chat with your friends, which is perfect if you’re hosting a game night. Why do it the old fashioned way, when you have a piece of innovative tech on your wrists to make things easier?    

#3 Dare the Monkey: Arcade Jump

 

  • Genre: Platform Game 
  • Developer: Hot Right Now 
  • Size: 134.1 MB
  • Release Date: December 17, 2017
  • Price: Free
Dare the Monkey Arcade Jump

Am I the only one who feels that platform games aren’t getting the same love they used to? These days, it’s all FPS and MMORPGs, when in the ’90s, it was all about Sonic and Super Mario. Who knew that the Apple Watch would be a worthy host to one of the best platform games for mobile devices in this era? The objective in Dare the Monkey is to collect as many coins and bananas as possible while also avoiding obstacles that could spell doom for your monkey.

The gameplay mechanics are fairly simple. All you have to do is tap on the screen to make the monkey jump over any oncoming obstacles. Not only is available for you Apple iDevices but it’s also one of the best games on Android. The game is free but you can purchase the ad-free version for $2.99.   

#4 Chess – Play & Learn 

  • Genre: Board Game 
  • Developer: Chess.com 
  • Size: 109.7 MB
  • Release Date: March 28, 2017
  • Price: Free
Chess Play and Learn

Who doesn’t like a good game of chess? Maybe people who don’t know how to play it? But it’s never too late to learn and it’s now even easier, thanks to technology. There are plenty of online resources dedicated to teaching you what was one of Humphrey Bogart’s favorite games. Sites like Chess.com have devoted themselves to the game. They provide educational videos, interactive lessons, news, puzzles and online games where you can compete with other players from all over the globe. As a matter of fact, they have over 30 million registered members. Because their unspoken edict is to bring chess to anyone and everyone, they have a plethora of apps and software supported on a wide variety of devices. With Chess – Play and Learn, Chess.com brings one of the oldest and most popular board games to your Apple Watch’s tiny screen.

If you’ve always wanted to learn how to play, this is a great way to do it. Through the app, you have access to Chess.com’s various lessons and videos. There’s a multiplayer mode where you can compete and chat with your friends. If you’re not ready to compete against human opponents, you can play against the computer. Not only is the computer’s difficulty adjustable but it also helps you improve your game by analyzing where you may have gone wrong during a match.  Who knows, if you practice enough, one day, you may find yourself competing in the World Chess Championship against Magnus Carlsen.  

#5 Rules! 

  • Genre: Puzzle  
  • Developer: TheCodingMonkeys 
  • Size: 63.4 MB
  • Release Date: September 21, 2015
  • Price: $2.99
rules

Before it came to the Apple Watch, Rules! was voted as one of the best iOS apps of 2014. It also received an award for best mobile game from the German Developer Awards. We can run down its accolades and trophies but that doesn’t mean anything if we don’t tell you why Rules! is so special. The game’s core premise is pretty simple. It’s a memory game with extra spice.

All you have to do is what the game tells you and follow its rules. For instance, the game may ask you to tap on a tile and match it on the next screen or you may be asked to match some numbers in ascending order. This happens all the while a timer counts down. As you progress, the game becomes increasingly more challenging. It’s addictive, it’s fun and it’s a perfect way to keep your brain sharp all from your Apple Watch.

#6 Clockmaker - Match 3 Games

  • Genre: Puzzle  
  • Developer: BELKA GAMES
  • Size: 264.2 MB
  • Release Date: February 16, 2018
  • Price: Free
Clockmaker - Match 3 Games

The Apple Watch is perfect for small and simple puzzle games like the Clockmaker. We could say that it’s a match made in heaven (pun intended). If you find yourself bored with Rules!, then this is a perfect alternative. It’s a story orientated puzzle game and that’s one of the things that sets it apart from other games in the same genre. By completing various puzzles and tasks, you get free a town from its curse and uncover the story of the clockmaker who cursed it. There are over a thousand different puzzles to complete. The game is always getting constant updates to keep things fresh. There’s also a leaderboard that highlights the best players from around the world. While the game is completely free, it does feature some in-app purchases. 

#7 Seekers Notes: Hidden Mystery

  • Genre: Adventure/Story  
  • Developer: MyTona
  • Size: 238.6 MB
  • Release Date: June 11, 2018
  • Price: Free
Seekers Notes Hidden Mystery

If you thought the Apple Watch isn’t a great device for story-driven games, then I’m here to tell you that you were wrong. Seekers Notes is a hidden picture game that incorporates puzzle solving as well as heavy storytelling elements. It also has an atmospheric and compelling soundtrack to draw players in and immerse them into the narrative. Seeker’s Notes is also well designed. The artwork is as impressive as the story is. The game’s rules aren’t fully explained; you’ll have to learn as you play along.

Sometimes it feels like playing a game of minesweeper (does anyone really know the rules of that game?). Seekers Notes is also free but as with most free games, it pesters you with ads and has in-game purchases. While the game mechanics aren’t always clear, they add to the game’s mystique. If you want to spend hours looking at your watch face like you’ve forgotten how to tell the time, then this is the best way to do it. 

#8 Snappy Word 

  • Genre: Puzzle  
  • Developer: Red Sprite Studios
  • Size: 238.6 MB
  • Release Date: December 10, 2016
  • Price: Free
Snappy Word

As I’ve stated before, Apple Watches are ideal for short quick puzzle games. That’s probably why the bulk of games on the Apple Watch are puzzle-based. Which is actually understandable since most smartwatches are used as fitness tracking devices. Puzzle games are just another way of keeping track of your mind’s fitness levels. Snappy word is ranked in the Apple app store as one of the best word puzzle games.

When you look at its rating and reviews, it’s not hard to see why. The premise is simple. All you have to do is create words by linking the letter tiles on the screen. You unlock additional rewards when you create words that are not in the hidden list. The game is completely free and features over 400 different levels. There’s also a multiplayer mode where you can challenge your friends through iMessage. It’s completely free and a great way to stay mentally fit.    

#9 Fantastic Chefs: Match ‘n Cook

  • Genre: Puzzle  
  • Developer: 99Games
  • Size: 237.4 MB
  • Release Date: May 21, 2018
  • Price: Free
Fantastic Chefs Match and Cook

And yet another puzzle game makes its way on our list. But what really makes this one stand out is its quirky and cute design. The game mechanics are pretty straight forward. All you have to do is match ingredients on the screen’s board. If you match your ingredients in a straight line or diagonally. There are hundreds of different levels to play through which all differ in difficulty.

For successfully completing levels, you get rewards such as new chefs and gold coins that can be used to unlock even more levels. It’s a free game but it doesn’t force you to spend money on in-game purchases (although it does feature a few). It’s a charming and adorable game. You don’t have to limit it to your Apple Watch, it’s also available for the iPhone and iPad. If you have an Android phone, you can download the game for your device from the Google Play store.

#10 Zombies Run 

  • Genre: Fitness  
  • Developer: Six to Start
  • Size: 423.7 MB
  • Release Date: December 10, 2016
  • Price: Free
Zombies Run

Earlier in this guide, I mentioned how smartwatches are ideal for keeping track of your health, fitness and general well-being. They’re also a great way to stay motivated and gamify your fitness goals. While some social games like Pokémon Go have been discontinued, there are still a few great games designed to get you to go outside. Zombies Run is one of them.

 It completely immerses you in a post-apocalyptic world where zombies are chasing you. In a way, you get to feel what most paranoid schizophrenics feel. The various stories and concepts you’ll hear while playing Zombies Run were co-written by award-winning writer Naomi Alderman. Her book The Power is an essential read. You can either follow the default story and playlist or choose your own mix. Whatever you choose, Zombies Run will make you feel like the world’s fate is dependent on your fitness levels.     

#11 Komrad

  • Genre: Interactive story   
  • Developer: Sentient Play LLC
  • Size: 69.8 MB
  • Release Date: September 13, 2016
  • Price: $0.99
Komrad

If running away from Zombies isn’t unnerving enough for you. How would like to chat with a Russian artificial intelligence that has been dormant since the 1980s? Komrad takes you back to a time of simple text-based strategy games and interactive stories. If you’re old enough to remember games like Oregon Trail and Zork, then you’ll definitely enjoy Komrad. Komrad feels like a fully realized legitimate AI, not a scripted story or game. It’s so immersive that it’s almost reality-bending.

It’s unfortunate that it’s so short. It’s been mentioned and featured by established and reputable publications such as Wired, Touch Arcade, and The Verge. According to CNET, it’s one of the best games of 2016. If you’re looking for a great interactive story where once again, the fate of the world rests on your shoulders, then you should definitely give Komrad a shot. While it’s not free, purchasing the game will cost you less than a dollar.  

#12 Runeblade 

  • Genre: RPG 
  • Developer: Everywear Games Inc.
  • Size: 106.4 MB
  • Release Date: October 17, 2015
  • Price: free
Runeblade

Apple Watch RPGs are few and far between. That’s why when you find a really great one like Runeblade, you have to shout its name from the mountain tops. Just because it’s on the Apple Watch, that let that fool you into thinking that this is a short game with very little storytelling. Runblades lore and story is deep. While your protagonist’s goals aren’t clear from the start, you play as a priestess who travels around a strange land battling beasts and creatures. Each monster you fell is followed by one who is stronger than the last. There are 2000 levels to fight through.

After every fifth level, you’ll come face to face with a guardian who must be defeated before you can progress further in the game. Guardians basically act as the game’s bosses. In addition to this, you get daily quests where you can earn rewards for traveling to key locations and defeating the enemies there. The gameplay is pretty straight-forward. Combat only requires a series of taps and swipes. It’s one of the few games on this list that was designed exclusively for your Apple Watch. It’s free but it does feature some non-essential in-game purchases.       

#13 Mini Watch Games 24-in-1

  • Genre: Collection 
  • Developer: AlhoGames
  • Size: 53.6 MB
  • Release Date: March 17, 2017
  • Price: free
Mini Watch Games 24-in-1

The best thing about owning an NES was getting yourself a multicart as your first cartridge. These cartridges were often packed with a slew of games that varied in genre and type. Which meant that one cartridge could keep you going for months. Mini Watch games is another Apple Watch exclusive. It comes with 24 different games to choose from.  The most notable ones are Brick Break, Car Car, Snake, Tiles, Stick Jump, Drop, Cave Flyer, Invaders, Block Run, and Tennis. Each game is a chance to test out and showcase your Apple Watches capabilities. The game is completely free. There are no ads or in-game purchases.     

#14 Pong 

  • Genre: Classic Arcade Game 
  • Developer: Tobias Brieger
  • Size: 21.8 MB
  • Release Date: October 7, 2015
  • Price: free
pong

Pong is erroneously thought to be the first video game. When in fact the very first video game was actually released in 1958, over a decade before Pong, which was released in 1972 by Atari. The first video game did bear a striking resemblance to Pong. It was a tennis game developed by a Physicist named William Higginbotham. Whether Pong was really the first video game or not is a bit irrelevant.

If you decide to download and install Pong on your Apple Watch, you’ll have a piece of video gaming history and a way of testing your watch’s functionality and your reflexes. The gameplay is pretty straightforward and simple. It’s basically a 1D game of ping pong. You control your bat by using the Apple Watch digital crown. Matches can be restarted using the ForceTouch menu. There are different levels of speed and difficulty. It’s completely free and worth downloading, just for the novelty alone.     

#15 Loop & Dot 

  • Genre: Casual Game 
  • Developer: John Zeglarski
  • Size: 34.9 MB
  • Release Date: October 7, 2015
  • Price: $0.99
loop and dot

The Apple Watch is great for casual games that require very little commitment. But you don’t need complex mechanics to make a game addictive. Loop and Dot is a testament to that fact. You play as the loop and your entire objective in the game is to surround and capture the dot whose size is always changing. You must surround the dot as many times as you can before the clock runs out. You score additional points when you match the size of the dot. You can increase or decrease the size of the loop with a simple swipe. The only downside is that it’s not free. But then again it only costs $0.99.   

Conclusion 

This concludes our list of 15 of the best games for your Apple Watch. The next time someone tells you that smartwatches aren’t conducive to great gaming, point them to this list and laugh in their faces. I hope that you leave this guide with a handful of new games to try out. If you’re looking for games for your other iOS devices, maybe you should check out our guide for the best iOS games.  As always, thank you for reading.