Levelling Up: Mozillion’s Mobile Gaming Report 2022 25/03/22

Mobile gaming made its way into the world in 1994, arriving on the Hagenuk MT-2000 in the form of a mobile version of popular arcade game Tetris. The likes of Nokia’s iconic Snake followed soon after in 1997, and since then the mobile gaming industry has exploded – valued at over a $100 billion globally, with mobile games accounting for more than a third of all app downloads. With phones suddenly used for purposes beyond simply calls and texts, this boom to the industry saw phones being pushed to new heights of technical complexity, which in turn offered up ample opportunity to gaming developers to push the boundaries of mobile gaming even further.

But which games really are the cream of the crop? From casual games and hyper-casual games to midcore, hardcore and even casino – there’s almost a million to choose from on Apple’s iOS app store alone – so where do you begin? We analysed Google searches for over 130 of the most popular mobile games, to rank them according to three factors: which games are most searched for globally, which games we need the most help with and which games take the longest to complete?

The Top 25 Most Searched For Mobile Games Globally

From a long road trip to a long queue, we all love to keep ourselves occupied with a game from time to time. No matter whether you’re playing on the large, hi-res display of the iPhone 13 Pro Max or on the speedy Google Pixel 6 Pro, there’s mobile games that will give even the hardiest of gamers their fix, all from the device sitting in their pocket. In 2022, high-resolution graphics, in-depth worlds and challenging campaigns require just a mobile phone, an app store and a quick download. But which is the most popular?

Turning to Google search data, we found that the world’s most searched for mobile game is Minecraft (just under 25 million global Google searches last year), piggybacking off its huge success across console and PC. Card-classic Solitaire followed behind with just over 16.5 million searches, and the top three was completed by Free Fire – pulling in just over 13.5 million searches.

Other notable popular mobile games that feature highly in the rankings include Angry Birds (1 million searches), Flappy Bird (823,000 searches) and Temple Run (550,000 searches) – all three having been global sensations upon their respective releases and remaining all the rage for years.

Rank Game Average Monthly Google Searches (Worldwide)
1 Minecraft 24,900,000
2 Solitaire 16,600,000
3 Free Fire 13,600,000
4 Among Us 11,100,000
5 Genshin Impact 7,480,000
6 PUBG Mobile 4,090,000
7 League of Legends 4,090,000
8 Brawl Stars 2,740,000
9 Subway Surfers 2,240,000
10 Pokemon Go 1,500,000
11 Knives Out 1,220,000
12 Pokemon Unite 1,220,000
13 Stardew Valley 1,220,000
14 Clash of Clans 1,000,000
15 Angry Birds 1,000,000
16 Clash Royale 1,000,000
17 Dead by Daylight 1,000,000
18 PUBG: New State 1,000,000
19 Call of Duty: Mobile 823,000
20 Ludo King 823,000
21 Flappy Bird 823,000
22 Terraria 823,000
23 World of Tanks 673,000
24 8 Ball Pool 673,000
25 Temple Run 550,000

1. Minecraft


Available on both iOS and Android, the mobile version of world-famous game Minecraft is practically identical to the version that can be played on PC and is the most popular mobile game in our rankings, with 24,900,000 global searches last year alone. The game has users navigating their way through a 3D world where they can build up and break down a variety of different blocks; across survival mode where players have to source their own food, craft their own weapons and find their own building supplies, creative mode where they’re given unlimited resources and multiplayer mode where they can play with friends or other users. The mobile version is the same if not better on some devices, with the only big difference being that it has stronger parental permission options – allowing parents stricter control over their kids’ gameplay.

2. Solitaire


Originally a tabletop card game, Solitaire was popularised when the digitised version was first included with the Windows operating system from 1990 onwards and pulls rank as the second most popular game that can be played on mobile, with 16,600,000 global searches last year. The aim of the game is to place the entire deck of cards from ace to king, in sequence and four times over (once for each suit). A good game for brain training and mindfulness, there’s now many different iterations from different developers on app stores, but Microsoft still holds the reins for the best mobile version out there.

3. Free Fire


A battle royale game (a genre of video games that merges “last-man-standing” gameplay with survival elements like scavenging and exploration), Free Fire is available on both iOS and Android and in 2019 was the most downloaded game globally, leading to more than 150 million daily active users in 2021. Despite reportedly having been banned in India, where a large portion of its users are based, it still holds this record in 2022 – having been downloaded 24 million times in January alone and pulling in 13,600,000 global Google searches last year.

The Top 25 Games We Need The Most Help With

Cheating in games is a taboo subject, as while it definitely provides some interesting experiences in gameplay, is a win really a win when it involves a cheat code or two? We looked at Google searches for [game] + cheats, but also for [game] + tips/walkthrough, in order to rank which games we need the most help with.

Minecraft garnered an impressive 61,000 global Google searches last year for terms surrounding game help, 81% of which were searches exclusively for cheating. While iconic Nintendo game Pokémon Go followed behind with 30,560 searches (more than half of which were for cheats) and Stardew Valley wrapped up the top three, pulling in 24,600 searches for help.

Hugely popular games Resident Evil 4 (7,620 searches), Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (6,780 searches and Call of Duty: Mobile (4,650 searches) all also ranked in the top 25 mobile games that people need the most help with, proving that no matter how many of us love the game – we all need some extra help with completing them. While the bulk of help searches for Resident Evil 4 were for a “walkthrough” (71% in total), the searches for Grand Theft Auto assistance on the other hand were 97% made up of searches for cheats, GTA players among the most likely to sneak their way to completing the game.

Rank Game Worldwide Average Monthly Search Volume for [game name] + tips/walkthrough/cheats
1 Minecraft 61,000
2 Pokémon Go 30,560
3 Stardew Valley 24,600
4 Genshin Impact 17,900
5 Subway Surfers 15,020
6 8 Ball Pool 12,700
7 Homescapes 12,380
8 Terraria 9,900
9 Clash of Clans 9,870
10 Among Us 9,140
11 Clash Royale 8,530
12 Resident Evil 4 7,620
13 Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 6,780
14 Gardenscapes 6,740
15 Half-Life 2 5,820
16 Township 5,690
17 Limbo 5,550
18 Ark: Survival Evolved 5,380
19 Free Fire 4,940
20 Call of Duty: Mobile 4,650
21 BioShock 4,640
22 Slay the Spire 4,160
23 Dead by Daylight 4,070
24 Borderlands 2 3,290
25 Dead Cells 3,200

1. Minecraft


It perhaps comes as no surprise that Minecraft ranks first for players looking for tips, walkthroughs and cheats since it ranks so highly in the popularity rankings too. While we don’t condone cheating… in Minecraft it does unlock some pretty cool features, from changing the weather to teleporting pretty much anywhere you want. With 49,500 searches for cheats, 9,900 searches for tips and 1,600 for walkthroughs, Minecraft has over double the amount of people searching for extra playing assistance compared to the next game in the rankings, Pokémon Go.

2. Pokémon Go


Falling into second place is the augmented reality, viral hit game developed by Pokémon in collaboration with Nintendo and Niantic. Merging the real and virtual worlds in an epic adventure, users can search and discover Pokémons in the world around them, by searching with their mobile devices when out and about. With over 30,000 combined Google searches last year for tips and tricks, many players are looking for hacks and shortcuts in the hopes of adding new and rare Pokémons to their Pokédexes.

3. Stardew Valley


Completing the top three games that have players searching for extra help is the simulation game Stardew Valley, where users are dropped into a farming set up to grow crops, raise livestock, mine and forage while leading lives in the valley, where they can marry and have kids. Originally designed for Microsoft Windows before being migrated over to other platforms, including mobile in 2018, it has seen immense success, with over 8,000 global Google searches last year alone for tips, 4,400 searches for walkthroughs and 12,100 searches for cheats.

The Top 10 Mobile Games That Take The Longest Time To Complete

If you’re into your gaming for the long haul, and get satisfaction from a long journey to winning a game, the following ones are for you. With most of them also costing nothing to download bar in-app purchases, the top ranking games in this chart truly offer the most bang for their buck, with up to four full weeks of gameplay for zero cost certainly making it worth your data.

Dead By Daylight takes users on average an impressive four weeks to complete, with Mobile Legends: Bang Bang in second place, taking just over two weeks to complete and Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds completing the top three, completion time coming in at just over a week.

Minecraft features in all three of our separate rankings, coming in at ninth place for games that take the longest time to compete – using up around half a week on average for players to finish. Meanwhile Pokémon Go, another incredibly widely loved game, takes users four more hours than Minecraft to complete.

Rank Game Time Required To Complete
1 Dead By Daylight 635 hours, 3 minutes
2 Mobile Legends: Bang Bang 401 hours
3 Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds 168 hours, 53 minutes
4 PUBG Mobile 124 hours
5 Hearthstone (Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft) 104 hours, 14 minutes
6 Granblue Fantasy 100 hours
7 Brawl Stars 94 hours, 25 minutes
8 Pokémon Go 93 hours, 32 minutes
9 Minecraft 89 hours, 7 minutes
10 Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links 85 hours

1. Dead By Daylight


Influenced by slasher movies, Dead by Daylight is a 4 vs 1 multiplayer game where users can opt to play as the killer or as one of four survivors being hunted down and lured to their death. Featuring some of the most iconic slasher movie killers like Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Leatherface and Silent Hill’s Pyramid Head, players take on average 635 hours and 3 minutes to complete the game – you’re in this one for the long haul.

2. Mobile Legends: Bang Bang


Mobile Legends: Bang Bang is a multiplayer online battle arena game designed for mobile, where players build out a team of five heroes who compete against another team trying to take over each other’s towers. The game garnered most of its popularity in southeast Asia and has over 100 million monthly players, taking on average 401 hours to complete.

3. Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds


PUBG is an online multiplayer battle royale game that took the gaming world by storm, becoming one of the best-selling, highest-grossing and most-played video games of all time and taking players on average 168 hours and 53 minutes to complete. The mobile version was released in 2018, with over a billion players landing on the battleground where they scavenge for survival supplies and compete to be the last team standing in 10-minute matches.

The Top 10 Mobile Games That Take The Shortest Time To Complete

For gamers wanting a quick fix, and not wanting to get their head buried in a mobile game for multiple hours each day, there are plenty of mobile gaming options that players can enjoy for just a few hours, rather than hundreds.

Solitaire is one of the most classic card games, and the digital version is even easier, taking users on average just five minutes to complete. Honor of Kings (known as Arena of Valor internationally) follows closely behind taking just 19 minutes on average to complete, and Helix Jump closes out the top three – taking just one hour to finish.

Well known and loved games like Super Mario Run (two hours) and Fruit Ninja (2 hours, 30 minutes) also feature in the top 10 quickest games to complete, known for their ease of playing but addictive nature

Rank Game Time Required To Complete
1 Solitaire 5 minutes
2 Honor of Kings/Arena of Valor 19 minutes
3 Helix Jump 1 hour
4 Super Mario Run 2 hours
5 Clash Royale 2 hours
6 Love Live! School Idol Festival 2 hours
7 Mario Kart Tour 2 hours, 15 minutes
8 Fruit Ninja 2 hours, 30 minutes
9 Arknights 3 hours
10 Flappy Bird 3 hours

1. Solitaire


Microsoft’s Solitaire provides a nice, quick gaming fix to players who don’t want to be consumed by their phone for more than a few minutes. Using logical thinking it both trains your brain and soothes the mind, allowing players to enter a meditative state while playing. Frequent playing has even been shown to improve memory skills, so at an easy 5 minute completion time – this is a great option for your next perfunctory gaming endeavour.

2. Honor of Kings/Arena of Valor


Coming in with the second shortest completion time is Honor of Kings, taking players just 19 minutes on average to complete. Initially released in China, it’s another multiplayer online battle arena game that much like other games in the rankings has at some point achieved the accolades of highest-grossing mobile game of all time and most downloaded app globally. In 2020 the game had over 100 million daily active players and its popularity led its developers to release an international version known as Arena of Valor in the European Union.

3. Helix Jump


A 3D game with more than 500 million downloads in 2020, Helix Jump requires players to control a ball, the main aim is to send the ball through certain gaps and land on a platform without touching specific coloured areas within the game, and each time you manage this you’ll complete a level. Taking users on average just one hour to complete, this one’s another quick gaming fix for anyone not wanting to get too invested in a game.

Whether you’re already a mobile gaming aficionado or all this has piqued your interest and you want to get into playing, take a look at our guide to the best mobile phones for gaming to see if it’s time to purchase a new mobile or find out how your current device will hold up upon playing some of the games in our rankings.


We compiled a list of over 130 popular video games that can be played on mobile devices. These games were then analysed using Google Keyword Planner. The number of total global searches for the time period January 2021 to January 2022 was determined for each game, and also for the following terms: [game] + tips, [game] + walkthrough and [game] + cheats in order to rank the games according to their popularity, and also according to which ones users are searching for the most “help” with. We then analysed the games on howlongtobeat.com in order to rank them according to which games take the longest, and shortest, times to complete.

Note: For consistency, the game title (‘Call of Duty: Mobile’) listed on the Apple App Store/Google Play was used to compile the Google search data for each of the games. Therefore, for some titles, this may include a portion of searches for the console version of the same name.

All data correct as of March 2022.