Freemium games hit Android like a dump truck. It allowed apps and games to go free with users paying money later if they chose to and it’s been a model that has been dominant. Freemium games make more money than their pay-once counterparts and people tend to download them more often. However, there are many who don’t mind paying for a bigger experience. If you’re one of those people, then we hope you’ll enjoy the non-Freemium Android games!
Beamdog is a developer studio that has ported a few iconic non-freemium games to the Play Store. They’ve done Baldur’s Gate, Baldur’s Gate II, Planescape: Torment, and Icewind Dale. Each of these are massive RPGs that take dozens of hours of complete. They hold true to their PC counterparts. That means they play just like the originals except on a touch screen. There are technically in-app purchases, but it’s for things like voice packs and have no bearing whatsoever on the games whatsoever. They’re a bit expensive and they’re a little rough to play on smaller screens, but they make up for it having tons of content.
Crashlands was our pick for the best game of 2016. The game centers around an intergalactic trucker stranded on an alien planet. Your goal is to build him a base, defeat bad guys, and craft items to help him save the day and go home. You can even tame some monsters and use them as pets. It's a deep game with a large world. There is also tons of stuff to do. The title also comes with cloud saving, RPG elements, and controller support. It's definitely among the best non-freemium games.
Don't Starve: Pocket Edition is an abstract survival game. You play as a scientist named Wilson. He is in the wilderness trying to survive. You'll have to build yourself shelter in order to survive. There are also all kinds of weird creatures you'll need to protect yourself from. It features tons of stuff to craft and build. It's one of the more unique non-freemium games on the list. There is the occasional bug, but nothing too bad. You can play the game offline as well if you prefer.
Downwell is a retro action-platformer game. Your goal is to fall down to the bottom of every level without dying. Each level is random so no two playthroughs are the same. Additionally, you'll have gunboots to help you defeat bad guys. The game also includes secret areas, power ups, and weapon upgrades to help you on your way. It's a decent little time killer with a very reasonable price tag. The controls are relatively simple and it won't take long to learn how to play this one.
The Escapists is a multi-platform sandbox game. You play as a prisoner and your goal is to escape captivity. There are a variety of methods to do so and you'll have your choice. During the course of your planning, you'll have to adhere to prison rules, brawl other inmates, steal stuff, and more. You then use that stuff to craft more complex tools in order to escape. It also has several scenarios to play through. The controls can be a bit difficult to work with. However, other than that, it's a non-freemium experience.
Lifeline is a series of interactive narratives. Each game has you following the story of someone that is helping someone else. Your suggestions can help mold and shape the story or kill off the protagonist. It depends on the story branches your choose to play through. The games are all text. That means they should work on virtually every device. Most of them also have Android Wear support. They're fun, low maintenance games that you only have to pay for once. The link above will take you to the developer page so you can check them out!
Minecraft: Pocket Edition is the mobile version of one of the most popular games ever. The game is completely open and you can do pretty much whatever you want. There are things that can kill you if you put it in survival mode or you can just do whatever you want without trouble in creative mode. It’s not quite as robust as the console or PC version, but updates have been floating in to make it closer. You can also use this to play on servers that aren’t on mobile (as of E3 2016) which is awesome. Technically, this one does have in-app purchases. However, they are for skins and they don't affect the game at all.
Mushroom 11 was the winner of the Standout Indie title at the 2017 Google Play Awards. Thankfully, it's actually a good game. You play as a giant blob. You control the blob by using your fingers to destroy part of it. The blob will grow in the opposite direction, thus moving forward. The game features seven worlds to play through, a decent atmospheric soundtrack, achievements, and more. There are also mechanics for speed runs and scoring challenges via leaderboard. It's a solid non-freemium game.
NBA Jam is a re-release of one of the most entertaining arcade games in the sports genre. In this one, you play two-on-two basketball with a very relaxed set of rules. You can do pretty much whatever you want. Your goal is to score the most points before the end of the game. It includes actual basketball players from the NBA and a mechanic where you essentially get super powers for making three baskets in a row with the same player. It comes with Android TV support, game controller support, local and online multiplayer, and more.
PewPew 2 is a retro top-down, non-freemium shooter. It also has enough explosions to be comparable to a Michael Bay movie. The game features nine game modes, three levels of difficulty, and even a story line. That should keep most people busy for a while. You'll also unlock ships, view replays of high scores via the leaderboard, and earn achievements. The title also includes controller support, Android TV support, and smooth game play.
Rockstar Games has a bunch of non-freemium games on mobile. That includes three remakes of older Grand Theft Auto games, two original mobile Grand Theft Auto games, and a remake of Bully. The games play mostly the same way. You're in an open world and you can do what you want. There are missions to complete, things to do, and various items to collect. The Grand Theft Auto games focus around street wars, organized crime, and the like. Bully is like that, except it takes place in school. All of them are reasonably good games.
Rollercoaster Tycoon Classic is a port of the popular sim game on PC. This version includes both Rollercoaster Tycoon 1 and 2 along with most of its DLC (available as an in-app purchase). Like the originals, your goal is to build a theme park that fits the scenario you've been given. There are dozens of scenarios to play through. You can also keep playing after the scenario is over if you want to fully develop your theme park. Included in the DLC is a toolkit to build your own scenarios and theme parks. It's probably the best non-freemium simulation game on mobile.
The Room is a trilogy of puzzle games. They may also be the best non-freemium puzzle games out there. They're technically escape games. The idea is to find the clues that help you leave the room you're in. It also comes with some of the best mobile game graphics that we've seen. The third version also comes with multiple endings which helps increase the longevity of the game. Most of them also come with cloud saving, achievements, and a hint system in case you need help.
Smash Hit and PinOut are about the only two decent non-freemium infinite runners that we've been able to find. Smash Hit is a first-person infinite runner. Your goal is to throw metal balls at glass panels to avoid being hit. The number of balls you have is also your life counter so throw wisely. PinOut is an arcade pinball game. Your goal is to continuously launch the ball into the next segment in perpetuity. Both games are great time wasters. They are both also free to play. You can get the pro version of each one that unlocks stats, save points, and more.
Square Enix hit the ground running on mobile. They have one of the biggest and best collections of non-freemium games from any developer. Some of the titles include Final Fantasy 1-7 and 9, Chrono Trigger, Adventures of Mana, Secret of Mana, Tomb Raider 1 and 2, several Dragon Quest 1-6 and 8, Romancing SaGa 2, the Chaos Rings trilogy, The World Ends With You, and more. The games range from a few bucks up to $20 or more in some cases. Most of them are also console ports. However, most of them are also excellent plays.
If we missed any of the best non-Freemium Android games, tell us about them in the comments! You can also click here to see our most recently released app and game lists!