Alto’s Adventure is the perfect zen iPhone game [50 Essential iOS Apps #26]

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Alto's Adventure on iPad and iPhone
Alto's Adventure is the perfect kind of iOS game for passing time on iPhone or iPad
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

50 Essential iOS Apps: Alto's Adventure gameGaming on iPhone and iPad has been something that has often gone overlooked. While big name titles haven’t typically made an appearance on iOS Devices, occasionally a game comes to the platform that is both visually amazing and a joy to play. Alto’s Adventure is incredibly fun, surprisingly delightful, and perfectly addictive, making it a rare gem in the iOS game library.

What is Alto’s Adventure

Alto’s Adventure is a side-scrolling, endless runner game, with a simple one-touch interface. The main premise of the Alto games is to snowboard your character down a bottomless mountain. The challenge is in avoiding obstacles, collecting coins, wrangling llamas, and scoring trick points. Tricks can be accomplished by jumping gaps, performing flips, and grinding various surfaces (as well as other actions that are unveiled as the game progresses).

Why it’s great

Unlike many other iOS games, Alto’s Adventure utilizes a calming soundtrack, fun characters, and dead simple controls, making it perfect for touch screen devices. The game’s level design and challenges make it just addictive enough that there’s always something else to work toward.

Alto's Adventure in-game on iPhone
Alto’s Adventure offers dynamic landscapes, characters, and environmental features to make it exciting and challenging.
Screenshots: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

Another great feature of Alto’s Adventure are the unique character mechanics. Some characters are able to flip quicker, while others can travel faster down the hill. One beloved character can even perform a “double jump,” allowing for better obstacle avoidance and higher scores. This added variety makes the game even more fun, as each character presents different challenges to playing.

A final great feature is that it is not only an iOS game, but is also available on Apple TV. Playing on Apple TV uses the same mechanics, and the same, simple one-button control bringing the fun to the big(ger) screen.

Who it’s for

If you are a fan of games, and want something worth playing on your iPhone or iPad (or Apple TV), Alto’s Adventure should be at the top of your list. Alto’s Adventure – and the sequel, Alto’s Odyssey – are great for all ages and are a great way to pass the time.

Bottom line

While iOS hasn’t traditionally been a gaming platform, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some great games on Apple’s platform. Alto’s Adventure is proof that a game doesn’t have to be overly complex to be beautiful and thoroughly entertaining.

Price: $4.99

Download from:App Store

Bonus: Alto’s Odyssey is also $4.99 in the App Store

See more of our 50 Essential iOS Apps

Want more essential iOS app reviews? Check out our ongoing series, 50 Essential iOS Apps.