Best Android games to play with stylus/pen, Jan 2019 edition
January 20, 2019 11:40 AM   Subscribe

I just replaced my old Galaxy S7 Edge with a Galaxy Note 8, and I wasn't expecting this, but I love it, and especially love the experience of using the "S Pen" / stylus. I never would've thought using a stylus with a smartphone would make any sense at all, but the precise input is something I always wanted - most user interfaces are designed to account for this, but on some level I still dislike "fat fingering" the screen and only being aware of a pixel radius that I'm coming in contact with rather than a specific pixel. I'm not much of a visual artist (though I'm interested in exploring that), but now that I'm sold on the stylus, I'm primarily interested in music-making apps and games that 1) benefit from precise or semi-premise control, or 2) which have a lot of information and interactivity on-screen because their UIs are ported from bigger tablet, computer, or TV displays and are intended for them. Would love some recommendations along those lines. Some personal tastes and initial selections inside.

Music-making apps:
I mostly have this covered, and there's a serious dearth of good ones compared to iOS. But so far I've got FL Studio Mobile and Nanoloop. Anything else of note? I would be interested in, say, old-school trackers, modular synths, live coding or generative stuff, and other similarly deep/complex apps.

I've really gone wild looking for stuff to play with the S Pen. So far I've had good experiences with:
-a Nintendo DS Emulator. running so far: Advance Wars: Dual Strike, Etrian Odyssey 3, and Rune Factory 3 (to get my fix while waiting for Stardew Valley to come out)
-Professor Layton and the Curious Village (basically just a port of the DS game, but near perfect for my tastes and controls great)
-Final Fantasy Tactics (haven't played yet, but this might be perfect in terms of huge depth/strategy and stylus-friendly UI)
-Pocket City (I played this before I got the Note 8 and loved it, but my touch wasn't that accurate, so I'm looking forward to playing more with the stylus)
-Stuff I wanted to like but weren't very good for stylus gameplay: Final Fantasy 7/9, Dragon Quest 5/8
-I'm thinking about Planescape: Torment, because I always wanted to play it on PC, and a portable version sounds fun. Deciding whether to shell out $10 for it, though. I understand it was made for tablets; is it playable on a phone at all? Will the text be laughably tiny, or readable? It might be an example of a game that's unplayable with touch but fine with stylus.
-In general I'm interested in RPG, strategy, and puzzle. I prefer games I can spend dozens of hours on rather that short or casual-ish ones, though that's not a hard constraint.
posted by naju to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
Oh, I'm also interested in Monster Hunter Stories. Is that one stylus-friendly?
posted by naju at 12:13 PM on January 20, 2019

In terms of music, Caustic is hands down the best Android tracker-style app.
posted by jonathanbell at 1:16 PM on January 20, 2019 [2 favorites]

Came in to say caustic as well. FM Synthesizer is also good. SFXR is a favorite too, but that's way not something you need a pen for...i just like its crazy noises.
Sketchbook mobile is the only drawing app you really need and worth spending the $5 or whatever it is for the pro version. And if you haven't played drawsomething (online pictionary basically) then that's definitely one to get.
Also fruit ninja is totally fun with a stylus.
posted by sexyrobot at 4:37 AM on January 21, 2019 [1 favorite]

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