Are you ready to get higher than you've ever been in your life? And by that, I mean are you looking for the best flying action to be found on iOS? Really, you are? Well what a coincidence, because you're about to be bombarded with 10 high quality apps that will help get you airborne. So strap into that cockpit and get ready to pull some Gs, we're about to take off with the 10 best games with planes!
Look alive all you armchair combat pilots, if you screw up and pass over this excellent combat flight sim, you'll be stuck flying a cargo plane full of rubber dog $#!& out of Hong Kong! Well, not really. Unless there's an app for that (which there probably is). Whatever, the point is that this is a great-looking combat sim. It also has some of the tightest accelerometer programming I've seen. It just feels satisfying to use. Leaning into barrel-roll that gets you out of trouble makes me really appreciate the responsiveness of the controls. But like a lot of games these days, it requires you to have a connection while playing, which is a bit of a downer. Then again, you probably don't want anyone seeing you gesticulate around with your iPad in public.
Atlantis Sky PatrolBig Fish Games
Despite its name, there's really no flying to be had in Atlantis Sky Patrol HD. It's kind of a marble game, puzzle game, and top-down shooter all wrapped into one slick package. The goal of Sky Patrol is to eradicate lines of colorful balls that are rolling about the screen. In order to do this, you must guide your plane along the bottom of the screen and fire into the balls, trying to come up with combinations of three in order to make a chunk disappear. The music and art style are beautifully put together, conveying a brassy, art deco feel that makes it feel like the game could be an intricate old toy you found in the attic. Does it deserve a best games with planes spot? You bet.
iFighter 2: The Pacific 1942EpicForce Entertainment
You gotta love a good top-down shooter. Dating back to Galaga, this type of game is in the DNA of video games. And it just feels right when it's themed with real fighter planes. In the case of the awkwardly-titled iFighter 2: The Pacific 1942, the theme here is World War II. The game offers a choice of seven real-life planes to fly, such as the F4F Wildcat. The combination of actual planes and historical context, mixed with the insanity you'd expect of a good top-down shooter game is a satisfying one. Be warned though, the game also succeeds in another hallmark of these kinds of games - it's tough. Of course, there's always in-app purchases to help you along your way.
When I think of online multiplayer deathmatch games, the first thing that comes to mind is definitely not paper airplanes. But leave it to the good people at Pangea Software to turn that misconception on its head. Air Wings delivers just that, deathmatch action with paper planes that has you blasting enemies out of the sky with clever weapons like paper ball bullets and pencil missiles. Since you can't have no deathmatchin' without no internets, you have to be online in order to play against all the other paper aces out there.
On paper, it would seem a little weird and specific to conceive a game that's a simulation of flying a remote-controlled plane. It's already a toy, so why would you need to make a sim of it? But as many an enthusiast knows, perfectly level flying is the supreme challenge of the scale model pilot. These little planes are a lot more complicated than one would think. As such, it makes for plenty to simulate. And that's where this game is at its best - in the air. The menu system and overall look may seem a little low-rent, but once you actually start flying, it serves as the perfect alternative to actually flying the real thing.
Paper Glider does not boast much in the world of flight games. While its airborne cousins are busy flexing their afterburners on big strafing runs, this little app is busy just doing its thing on its own time. Paper Glider is the tortoise. And as such, it wins the race with high marks for its supremely addictive time-wasting goodness. It has a simple premise that you want to keep coming back to - guide a paper plane as far as you can. You control it with a swipe to get it going and then well-timed taps that will produce a puff of air to keep it aloft. Like all of the best simple games out there, Paper Glider is that app you want to tap when you've got a bit of time to kill.
Bombshells: Hell's BellesGlu Games
Despite there being something cold and calculating about this game, I still warmed up to it after a while, which is why it's on our 10 best games with planes list. Because of the crass marketing, the multiple bad puns in the title, and the unabashed push for in-app purchasing of content, the basic elements of what you get to play are pretty solid. There's no shortage of turtle wax on the hull of this baby -- it's polished to a mirror sheen. For anyone who was a fan of classic aerial shooters like Star Fox, there's plenty to appreciate here. But I wish you could enjoy more without having to be sneakily encouraged to pay money. I'd rather be told upfront than have a carrot dangled in front of me. Or in this case, a heat-seaking missile.
F-Sim Space ShuttleLedinsky Software
Like any red-blooded American kid, I wanted to be an astronaut when I grew up. Since I'm nowhere near the kind of financial solvency that could put me in orbit with Richard Branson and since basic algebra is about as far as I'm gonna go with math, my options are limited. Fortunately there's F-SIM Space Shuttle to the rescue! This game lets you pilot a space shuttle and puts you behind the cockpit of one of the big dogs - Atlantis! It pretty much boils down to this - pilot the shuttle to safety on the runway at John F. Kennedy Space Center or Edwards Air Force Base. After you land, you can watch a replay of your flight from different angles. That's it. The game is no frills, but beautifully presented, with plenty of challenge. And it feels as real as can be expected from a game that has you piloting a space shuttle with your phone.
Galaxy on Fire 2 HDFISHLABS
Back in the day, the Wing Commander games were my jam (not the movie though - let's just forget about that). And it's a downright shame the games haven't been ported over to iOS yet. But thankfully there's Galaxy On Fire 2, which is about as close to Wing Commander as it gets. Also, way better in a lot of ways! I can't believe how incredibly well-realized it is. Speaking of movies, this game is the Terminator 2 of flight games on iOS. In much the same way that James Cameron's masterpiece is the epitome of action and sci-fi excellence, this game delivers big in both. It's just as good as any of the combat flight games and flight sims out there, all while delivering a top-notch sci-fi experience. It's almost a shame that this epic space shooter is designed to be played in an environment that can be interrupted with a call from your parents. Can't talk now, Mom... I'm saving the galaxy!
You guys knew this one was coming, but where else could Flight Control be but at the top of this list? It's akin to The Beatles not being on top of a Rolling Stone list of the best bands of all time. This game is just too good and too much of a huge hit to not give it the number one spot in our 10 best games with planes list. Chances are you already have this on your iOS device of choice. And if not? Well, what are you waiting for? There are planes that need landing! So get that finger out of your nose and put it to good use keeping the planes, jets, and helicopters of Flight Control from crashing into one another.