Local multiplayer games are a dying breed in the world of gaming. Most multiplayer games nowadays can only work if you’re connected to the internet. Sure, it’s fun to pwn noobs from across the world, but sometimes you want to pwn the person sitting right next to you.
Local multiplayer games are perfect for passing time with your friends, boring plane rides while waiting for food at a restaurant, hospital waiting rooms, and tons of other situations. It can be hard to find a good Android game with local multiplayer, but we’ve done all the work for you. Also, you might want to pick up the Moga Hero Power controller for your Android phone if you really want the upper hand when challenging your friends. Check out these great games for two (or more) players!
BombSquad supports up to 8 players in local multiplayer mode. The idea of the game is to blow up your friends. It’s that simple. You can use other devices as controllers to play together on one screen. It’s a lot of fun and great for parties.
Glow Hockey is one of the original 2-player games for mobile devices. The concept is exactly the same as air hockey. You and another player use opposite sides of the device. Slide your finger to move the paddle and shoot the puck into the goal of your opponent.
Spaceteam is a cooperative party game for 2 to 8 players. You’ll be assigned a random control panel with buttons, switches, sliders, and dials. You need to follow time-sensitive instructions. However, the instructions are being sent to your teammates, so you have to coordinate before the time runs out.
6 Takes is a card game that you can play with your friends. The goal of the game is to avoid getting cards. Each card you have to pick up costs you points for each bullhead on it. The player with the fewest bullheads at the end of the game is the winner. You can play locally against up to four players.
Battle Slimes is a fun local multiplayer game. Control speedy and bouncy slime blobs as you compete with friends and family. Score by stomping or hitting rivals with colorful bubbles. This platformer/shooter game features simple one-button jump controls. Play against the computer or up to four friends in matches. Choose from two different game modes and four different battle arenas.
NBA Jam is one of the best basketball games ever made. You can play this arcade-style basketball game against your friends locally. The game uses WiFi or Bluetooth to connect to your friends devices. You can play together without sharing a small display. NBA Jam is fast-paced, full of dunking, and tons of fun.
Evil Apples is like Cards Against humanity on your phone. The idea is to pick a white card that goes best with the red card. Most of the time it’s a fill-in-the-blank situation. The judge will then choose their favorite and that person gets a point. First one to 7 wins. You can play against friends around the table or across the globe.
Heads Up is an awesome party game. It’s like charades reinvented for the modern age. One person holds the phone against their forehead. Everyone else in the room can see the card shown on the phone. Friends give clues to help the person guess what’s on the card. The goal is to see how many they can guess in the allotted time.
This game is an adaptation of Days of Wonder’s best-selling train board game. It supports pass-and-play for up to four players. The goal of the game is to collect cards of various types of train cars and use them to claim railway routes that connect cities in various countries around the world.
Gentlemen! is a Victorian era-themed head-to-head arcade battle. You and a friend duel on the same screen with knives, bombs, homing pigeons, and much more. The controls are on opposite sides so you can sit across from a buddy and compete. Gentlemen! works best on a tablet that is 7-inches or bigger. Many of the games on this list include local multiplayer, but this game was built for it. It’s a little pricey at $4.67, but you can split it with your friend.
2 Player Reactor is a classic game. It starts with you and a friend take opposite sides of a device. The game consists of 18 random mini games that cycle quickly. One second you’re being asked to find a sad face in a crowd of smiles, next you’re being asked to solve a simple math equation. Each mini game requires fast reaction time in order to earn points. But you can’t just mash the button, wrong answers result in negative points. It’s a hectic and exciting game that is perfect to play with friends, plus it’s free.
If you’ve never played UNO before I have serious doubts about whether you’re really a human. This timeless card game is tons of fun, and you can play it on Android too. The basic idea is to get rid of cards by discarding ones with the appropriate numbers or colors. The player who discards all of their cards first is the winner. UNO & Friends utilizes the “pass & play” mechanic so your friends can’t spy on your cards. UNO is fun for all ages and completely free.
BADLAND is an epic side-scrolling adventure platformer. It’s rare to see multiplayer platformers on mobile because of the screen real estate for controls, but BADLAND pulls it off. The local multiplayer in BADLAND is pure chaotic fun. The goal is to survive as long as possible through the many obstacles, but you can sabotage your friends and improve your odds. There is also a co-op mode if you’re feeling nice. BADLAND is available for free.
There was a time when people thought the world was flat. They actually feared going off the edge in a ship. Nowadays we don’t worry about such things, but in Edge of the World it’s the name of the game. You and a friend take turns launching ships to see who can get closest to the edge. Of course you can also just knock your friends ships off the edge to win. It’s a lot like shuffle board. There are five different captains to choose from which come with different powers. This game is available for free.
One of the original “Pass & Play” games was Worms. In this classic game you control a team of worms. At your disposal is a long list of weapons and actions that you can use to defeat your opponents’ team of worms. Players take turns attacking each other until only one team remains. Some weapons do more damage than others, and some can only be used once, or after so many turns. If you’ve never played Worms you are really missing out. Worms 2 costs $4.99, but it’s worth every penny.
If you’ve never played Battleship you are seriously missing out. This classic two-player board game has been recreated for Android dozens of times, but the best version is Sea Battle. In this version there are tons of new options that aren’t available in the board game. They have added bombers, mines, anti-aircraft defense, radars, and more. It’s tons of fun, and of course it can be played with two people on the same device. Sea Battle is available for free in the Play Store.
“Action for 2 Players” may be the most aptly named app in the Play Store. It is what it is: action for two people at once. There are three games to choose from: tablet soccer, tank fight, car race. Tablet soccer is a lot like air hockey. Tank fight is the classic game where you drive around and shoot at each other. Car race is a simple top-down racing game. All of these games can be played with 2-4 players at one time. Use a tablet for best results. This game is available for free.
Connect Four is a classic strategy game for two players. The goal of the game is to get 4 discs in a row, which is where this Android version of the game gets its name. The game consists of an upright board with 42 holes. Players take turns dropping colored discs from the top. The goal is to get four of your discs in a row. Think of it like tic-tac-toe, but gravity pulls all of the X’s and O’s to the bottom. To win you need to strategically plan out your moves. It’s a lot of fun and can be yours for free.
2 Player Touch is similar to 2 Player Reactor. It consists of 12 mini game stages with an emphasis on being first to react. The mini games are completely different from 2 Player Reactor, and instead of having just one button to press you get three or more. The graphics are bright, colorful, and fun. If you’re looking to show off your reaction time this is another game to check out. It’s completely free from the Play Store.
Everyone has played Hangman at least once in their life. This game requires no introduction, but I will give one just in case we have any rookies out there. One player picks a word for the other player to guess. For every incorrect letter the man gets closer to being hung. It’s a little gruesome if you think about it, but it’s fun nonetheless. We love the cute graphics of this particular version, and it’s free.
If numbers and equations are things that you enjoy we have the perfect game for you. Math Duel is a fun two-player game for people who can do quick calculations in their head. Players use opposite sides of the display to solve math problems. For each correct answer you get a point, and for each incorrect answer you lose one. It’s a fun and competitive way to pass the time and learn a thing or two in the process. Kids 7 years old and up should be able to do the math, and it’s free to download.
Sometimes all you want to do is play some good old-fashioned tic tac toe. Of course there are plenty of tic tac toe apps in the Play Store, but we like this one the best. For those of you who shockingly don’t know how to play tic tac toe: players take turns making marks in a 3×3 grid in attempt to get 3 in a row. That’s it. It’s the most basic time killing game on the face of the Earth, and of course it’s free.
Another super simple and classic time killing game is Dots and Boxes. This game is popular among elementary school kids because it’s the perfect use for graphing paper. In this version of Dots and Boxes the grid is made up of 49 dots. Players take turns connecting dots with horizontal or vertical lines. If your line is the fourth side of a box it fills in with your color and you get another turn. The player to make the most boxes wins. It’s easy, it’s fun, and it’s free.
In this game you and a friend take to the skies and control fighter jets. Each player gets their own controls on opposite side of the device. The goal of the game is to maneuver your jet so you can shoot the other player. The first player to get 10 successful hits is the winner. The only buttons at your disposal are left, right, jet, and fire. Like many of the games on this list, it’s super simple, but also tons of fun. It’s also available for free.
Finally, a way to play Fruit Ninja with two players. Two Player Fruit Shoot substitutes ninja swords for bows and arrows, but the fruit slaying is all the same. The big bonus to this fruit-based game is that you can compete against a friend on the same device. Each player gets a side of the screen, and fruit is flung up between them. Whoever shoots the fruit first gets the points. It’s that simple, and it’s free. Kill some fruit!
Local multiplayer games are an under-appreciated genre. We hope this list has opened your eyes to some new games to play with your friends. Do you have any favorite games to whip out when you’re bored with friends? Do you have any suggestions that didn’t make our list? Let us know!