Terraforming Mars is one of the most celebrated strategy board games released in the past decade. A digital version of the game was released on Steam last year, and now fans can enjoy playing the game on their smartphones, too.
While I never played the board game myself, my old roommates were absolutely obsessed with Terraforming Mars. I’d often come home to see our kitchen table taken over by a giant map of Mars and find them deeply focused on solving dilemmas and re-working their strategies for raising the planet’s temperature.
The smartphone version of the game captures all the same depth and strategy of the board game with a fresh UI that’s designed to be played on smartphones or tablets.
Your goal in this turn-based strategy game is the same as always: to transform Mars into a habitable planet for humans to colonize. Each player is the head of a corporation working towards that, and while you must work cooperatively to reach the shared objective, there’s plenty of opportunities to sabotage your opponent’s projects along the way, since you’re also competing against one another to collect the most victory points.
The mobile version lets you start up and play anytime, either with AI opponents or with up to five human players in online multiplayer. Given that the game has just recently dropped into the Google Play Store, you should expect to run into some bugs specifically during online play, but you can expect those wrinkles to be ironed out quickly. That’s going to be a bit frustrating for enthusiasts of the game eager to dive into online matches with friends. In the meanwhile, I’d recommend newer players to learn the intricacies of the game by playing solo games with AI opponents, or with the new Solo Challenge mode
Terraforming Mars also supports cross-platform play, allowing Steam and mobile players to play together. Both the mobile and Steam versions of the game were brought to life by Asmodee Digital, easily the best and most accomplished publisher of digital board games. They’ve helped to bring some of the best board game adaptions to mobile, including Ticket to Ride, Pandemic: The Board Game, and many more.
This version of Terraforming Mars was developed with help from Jacob Fryxelius, the designer of the original board game, so you can be sure that it’s an authentic version of the game. If you’ve been eyeing Terraforming Mars to add to your board game collection, this mobile version just might be the next best thing, backed by a development team that truly values player feedback.
Game of the week
Terraforming Mars is an award-winning board game that is now available on Android and iOS. The goal of the game is to work together with the other corporations to terraform Mars as a new haven for humanity while competing to earn the most victory points.
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Marc Lagace is the Apps and Games Editor at Android Central. He’s been a gamer for most of his life and actually took a university course on Video Game Theory — which he aced! You can reach out to him on Twitter @spacelagace.
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