After unboxing your new iPad and getting it setup, the first thing you should do is open up the App Store and download some essential games. We’ve compiled a list of 9 of the App Store’s greatest offerings, which we think should be installed on every iPad. These are games you certainly won’t want to miss.
Real Racing 2 — $2.99
Real Racing 2 was already one of the best looking games for the iPad, and with high-resolution visuals for the new iPad’s Retina display, it looks even more incredible. It features 30 licensed cars from real-world manufacturers that you can throw around some really awesome tracks in 15 stunning locations. There’s over 10 hours of gameplay to enjoy, and with 16-player online multiplayer, Real Racing 2 has an endless replay value. One of its best features, however, is that you can hook it up to your HDTV with AirPlay and play on the big screen while using your iPad as a controller.
Infinity Blade II — $6.99
If sword fighting’s your thing, then Infinity Blade II should be at the top of your shopping list. As its name suggests, it’s the sequel to Epic’s award-winning Infinity Blade and it’s even more spectacular. Its visuals are unmatched on iOS, with console-quality graphics that will look amazing on your new iPad. This title is so good that it was voted the best iOS game of 2011 by Cult of Mac readers.
Grand Theft Auto 3 — $4.99
This is one game that needs very little introduction. Ten years on, it’s still one of my favorite games of all time. Grand Theft Auto 3 takes you back to Liberty City where it all began. The game is identical to that that hit the PlayStation 2 all those years ago, but it’s been updated to include new high-definition visuals. It’s not Retina-ready for the new iPad just yet, but that shouldn’t take anything away from how terrific this game is.
Plants vs. Zombies — $6.99
Undoubtedly Popcap’s most enjoyable iOS games for iOS, Plants vs. Zombies has you defending your home from wave after wave of undead, who would love nothing more than to feast on your brain. Your only weapon is a selection of 49 plants that can shoot peas, throw melons, digest zombies, and more. There are a whopping 50 levels to play through and a great survival mode that you won’t be able to put down.
Angry Birds HD — $2.99
It’s Angry Birds on the iPad. Is there anything else you need to know?
Minecraft — Pocket Edition — $6.99
We waited forever to get Minecraft in our pockets, and it was well worth the wait. With this game on your iPad, you can create masterpieces on-the-go with over 36 different types of blocks to choose from. Defend yourself against pigs in the new survival mode, and invite friends to join your world over a local network connection.
Words With Friends HD — $0.99
Words With Friends is kind of like Scrabble, only it’s social. With over 20 million users, it’s one of the biggest word games on iOS, and it’s a whole load of fun. Play against friends on Facebook, invite friends to a game, or play against a random opponent. You can play up to 20 games simultaneously and use the in-game chat to taunt your opponent.
Jetpack Joyride — Free
Infinity Blade II might have been voted the best game of 2011 by our readers, but Jetpack Joyride came pretty darn close to taking the top spot. This game sees the return of the lovable Barry Steakfries who’s sporting a jetpack he stole from some evil scientists. Barry uses his jetpack with a variety of weapons to travel as far as he can without being taken out. This is another addictive running game from Halfbrick Studios that just never seems to get boring.
World of Goo — $4.99
The critically acclaimed World of Goo is a unique puzzle game that made its name on the Mac. It’s even better with multitouch on iOS, however. Your mission is to drag and drop living, talking, squirming balls of goo to build flimsy structures and provide the balls with a route to their pipe. Each level presents you with new puzzles and challenges, and it really is a joy to play.