20 of the Best Puzzle Games: Puzzle Away the Hours

Best Puzzle Games

Not everyone is a fan of puzzle games, and that’s fair. Sometimes, we play games to relax our brain, not challenge it. That said, people often forget that puzzles are chameleons, and they can take shape in different forms. In fact, some people might not even realize they are playing a puzzle game because they can have a flair of RPG, or they look like your regular, old adventure game. 

The thing about puzzles, however, is that even if you walk away for an hour or so, you’ll find it’s hard to deny their power. You simply must figure them out. And some people love that.

If you’re a fan, here are 20 of the best puzzle games. 

20. Best Puzzle Games: Slayaway Camp

Source: YouTube/Father

Let’s start with a bang, shall we? And by mentioning that this game is 17+ because, well, it involves murdering people. Casual, I know. 

Slayaway Camp is an interesting take on the puzzle genre, throwing in some morbidity every once and a while (okay, most of the time), as players have to make their way around the game world, murdering victims in a specific order so they can move onto the next area. At its core, the puzzle of the game is figuring out how to avoid and use the various obstacles you encounter while carrying out your killing spree; you will have to be smart about what to use in order to succeed. 

It’s morbid, it’s funny, it’s over-the-top, and it’s a puzzle game that pays homage to the horror films that came out in the 80s. What more could you want?

19. Best Puzzle Games: The Room 3

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While we’re on the topic of eerie puzzle games, now seems the best time to mention The Room 3. I mean, it’s hard not to mention this game at all, considering it’s the ultimate creepy puzzler. 

The series itself is fun, sure, but The Room 3 takes everything we loved about the first game and doubles it. Maybe even triples it. From box-related puzzles, a gripping storyline, and creepy clues about the reality of what’s going on in the game, players will find themselves not just engaged in the game, but looking over their shoulders every now and then, too. 

18. Best Puzzle Games: Threes

Source: YouTube/Jorge Ontaneda

A downside to many puzzles is that even though it may take you a while to figure it out, the outcome is always the same. Not just for you, but for everyone. But that’s what makes the matching game Threes so different. The game may use the same numbers, but the outcome is always different, and so each time you play, individuals can find new paths and methods for matching. 

And yes, we said numbers, but know that that doesn’t mean you have to be great at math to play. Keep a clear and open mind, and focus on the task at hand as well as what’s next, and you’ll enjoy the game as much as the developers intended. 

17. Best Puzzle Games: Red’s Kingdom

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For those who don’t want numbers, and don’t want to go on a killing spree, check out Red’s Kingdom.

The game is a goofy adventure puzzle with twists and turns, a heartwarming story, and colorful characters. Players can enter a new world, explore new areas, and find hidden treasures. It is, of course, at its core, a puzzle game, but the gameplay is more action-adventure, so it’s an easy disguise for those who want to challenge their brain without realizing it. 

16. Best Puzzle Games: FRAMED

Source: YouTube/MobileGamesDaily

FRAMED is a cool one.

Inspired by film-noir, this puzzle game has stunning visuals and a compelling story, attracting users from the get-go. The story of the game plays out in comic book form with different panels, but there’s a twist: the panels are jumbled up.

The aim of the game is for the player to figure out the right sequence order for the story in the comic book. And it’s not an easy story to figure out, either. We don’t want to spoil anything but know that there’s a whole lot of mystery wrapped in it. Oh, and there’s also a sequel, so figure out the first game and move onto the next, and become the puzzle baller we both know you are. 

15. Best Puzzle Games: Monument Valley

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Yet another puzzle game that has unsettling visuals and an intriguing storyline, Monument Valley has been praised by both players and critics. 

The game offers 3D maps, and players have to lead Princess Ida through different mazes of optical allusions while manipulating the world around her. Doing so will help players reach different platforms. The style of the game was inspired by minimalist sculptures and Japanese prints, making all of the landscapes in the game absolutely breath-taking.

It’s also really addicting, so you’ve been warned. 

14. Best Puzzle Games: Prune

Source: YouTube/Noire Blue

When people need to relax after a long day, some opt for exercise. Others head off to catch happy hour. But if these options don’t appeal to you, know that the puzzler Prune is out there waiting for you. With its minimalist design and limited color scheme, it’s easy to focus on the game in a relaxing way, leaving your worries at the door. 

The aim of the game is simple: players are tasked with cutting trees, but they have to be done in different patterns in order to reach the sunlight. Sounds simple, right? Wrong. You have to cut the trees in these patterns, all while avoiding different dangerous around you. 

Sit back, relax, and cut some trees!

13. Best Puzzle Games: Ultra Flow 2

Source: YouTube/Android Gameplay Weekly

If you’re a serious puzzler (and we know a few of you are), Ultra Flow 2 hits the sweet spot. While it’s challenging enough to get the wheels of your mind turning, players won’t find that they are stuck on the same level time and time again.

The first of the series was similar in that sense, but Ultra Flow 2 has what the first game lacked: the soundtrack is more engaging, and the game itself focuses less on brainpower and more on hand-eye coordination. Which, I don’t know about you, is something that should always be worked on, especially as we get older. 

12. Best Puzzle Games: Mini Metro

Source: YouTube/Skye Storme

I’ve been to London several times, and I’m finally at the point where I understand how the Underground system works without having to look at a map. But it took me a while to get there. A city’s public transportation system can be messy, with different trains connecting to different lines, and Mini Metro plays exactly on that. 

The game is minimalist in its design, but it’s a mind-boggling puzzle, as individuals attempt to create their own subway system. It sounds easy, but the more connections you add, you’ll start to see mistakes along the way. Don’t be surprised if you spend an hour or two scratching your head. 

11. Best Puzzle Games: Photographs – Puzzle Stories

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Photographs is definitely one of the more interesting games on this list because there’s so much going on. The aim of the game is to search around and solve different puzzles, but Photographs also focuses heavily on the narrative, so each time you work on a puzzle, players will uncover more information as well as hear a story that goes along with the scene they are currently in. All of the stories take place in different settings and bring new gameplay mechanics to the table, so there’s never a dull moment in the game. 

Know that the game is short, but it’s still an experience avid puzzlers should undergo at one point or another.

10. Best Puzzle Games: ELOH

Source: YouTube/Pocket Gamer

For the music junkies out there, this one’s for you. 

A musical puzzle game, players have to find the right position for the blocks in order to guide the balls into the correct holes. The game has over 90 stages, and the puzzles become harder as you progress through them. The shapes and forms of the blocks will also become more creative as you advance in the game. Still, ELOH is a great puzzler to play when you’re looking to relax, as it has a great soundtrack, beautiful graphics, and no time limits. 

9. Best Puzzle Games: Gorogoa

Source: YouTube/AllGamesWorldHd

If you thought FRAMED sounded cool, check out Gorogoa. 

With this game, players are given different hand-drawn panels that have different puzzles in them, and they have to arrange and combine them to solve these puzzles. While similar to FRAMED in certain ways, Gorogoa is still thought to be one-of-a-kind, in part because of the beautiful art displayed in the panels, which become stunningly animated once the puzzle is solved. 

8. Best Puzzle Games: Lumino City

Source: YouTube/Dark Adonis

By far, Lumino City is one of the most beautifully designed games on this list. And the storyline isn’t bad either. 

Here’s the goal: help Lumi find her grandfather, who has been kidnapped. You have to explore Lumino City to find out what happened, and by doing so, you will engage in various realistic puzzles across the city, all of which are intertwined together. 

It’s a long game, but think of it as an investment of sorts. 

7. Best Puzzle Games: You Must Build A Boat

Source: YouTube/Polygon

This game takes the match-three formula and combines that with an RPG that is immensely challenging. Essentially, players must carry out a journey of fighting monsters and then recruiting them for your boat. As you make more conquests, you should have more monsters joining your ranks.

It’s a unique concept, but what’s more, it’s actually challenging, so for those who don’t want a relaxing puzzle, we highly recommend picking up a copy of this game. 

6. Best Puzzle Games: Deus Ex Go

Source: YouTube/IGN

It’s fair to say that this puzzler is one of those that never gets boring.

There are several layers to Deus Ex GO; individuals must defeat enemies, sneak around, and hack computers to solve the various puzzles planted in the game. 

5. Best Puzzle Games: Donut County

Source: YouTube/Markiplier

Right, Donut County is not only cute, but it’s quirky. The game centers around BK the raccoon, and it follows him as he creates donut holes in the ground (using a very special device), which helps him steal trash. Steal the trash, win prizes. But wait, there’s more.

One day, BK falls into one of his donut holes and finds various residents underground as well. That’s where the gameplay comes in: BK goes around the different homes of the characters underground and attempts to solve what happened. 

Playing Donut County oftentimes does not feel like you’re playing a puzzle game. But if that’s what you want, consider this quirky little game about a raccoon to be a jackpot. 

4. Best Puzzle Games: Rules!

Source: App Store/Rules!

This one is complicated, we’re not going to lie to you. You need serious brainpower to get through Rules! successfully. Are you up for the challenge? Good. Here are the rules (pun intended). 

Players go through different rounds in this game, and in each, they have to clear tiles using a specific rule. The next round gets you to do the same but introduces a new rule. In order to get to the end of the game, players essentially have to remember all the rules they encountered in reverse. Confused yet? Us too. Still, it’s a clever and engaging memory game that gives you not just great visual design, but quality as well. 

3. Best Puzzle Games: Scribblenauts Remix

Source: YouTube/lonniedos

We have to add one in for the kiddies. 

Scribblenauts Remix is a great puzzle game for children, as it lets players use their imagination to dream up solutions to around 50 puzzles. It’s essentially an imagination-based puzzle with adorable graphics, and clues to help when stuck. 

2. Best Puzzle Games: World of Goo

Source: YouTube/jacksepticeye

World of Goo is an award-winning physics game, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise to see it on this list.

Yet, despite its credentials, the game plays relatively simply: drag adorable balls of goo across a bridge to create a structure that will stand. The goal is to rescue other goo that are stranded, and they will use these structures to return to safety. But watch out, there’s no guarantee that your structure will stand, and you will have to do everything in your power to avoid the wobbles. 

1. Best Puzzle Games: Touchtone

Source: YouTube/Pocket Gamer

We’re giving Touchtone the number spot, not because of its excellent writing and challenging puzzles, or because it has an interesting story with twists and turns, but because it’s a puzzle game that incorporates basic human necessities. In the game, you are connecting communication lines, as monitoring communication is part of your civic duty. You listen to the story you see developing and have to make rational decisions about whether it is going to protect or harm your country. 

As much as we love horror puzzles and cute games about goo, sometimes the most challenging games are the ones that have relevance to our daily lives. 

Featured image: PixaBay

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