When it comes to modern gaming, most of the industry is focused on PC, mobile, or console titles. Increasingly, gaming and tech publications are also focusing on VR as headsets become more popular in households around the world. Overwhelmingly, these formats represent the most competitive and popular ways to game.
Still, that doesn’t mean that handheld consoles and tablets don’t offer a quality experience. For those who are entirely new to gaming, a handheld or tablet is a gaming device that fits right in your hands. They’re designed to be a bit more portable than a PlayStation or a PC—but they’re more optimized for gamers than a small device like a smartphone.
The most popular handhelds are the Nintendo Switch and Steam Deck, which were designed and created specifically for gaming. However, the iPad Air from Apple is also a quality handheld that can be used to access a variety of mobile titles. If you have one of these devices and are interested in gaming, then dive into one of the categories listed below—they’re each optimized for the handheld experience.
Card games, such as poker, are incredibly popular worldwide. Most players these days are registered with an online platform like PokerStars, which offers a variety of gameplay formats—from mobile to desktop to VR. But card games are especially perfect for handheld tablets like iPads. That’s because most players like to play Texas Hold’em for a few hours at a time—without setting up shop on their laptop or PC.
Tablets are ideal because they let a player drift from the couch to the kitchen to the balcony as they play. Similarly, many find it easier to play card games on a touchscreen rather than using a mouse or a controller. The same goes for non-poker titles, including solitaire or rummy. The game is easier to navigate and is a bit more intuitive on a handheld device.
This isn’t a type of game, but a game developer. This Japanese giant is known for creating some of the world’s most popular games and characters, from Super Mario to Zelda to Animal Crossing. And there’s one reason you should target Nintendo games if you want to game on a handheld: the Switch device was created just for this.
In 2017, Nintendo released a new generation of gaming devices: the Nintendo Switch. The handheld is also able to hook up to a computer or TV and work like a standard console. So, if you’ve got access to a Switch device, then you have access to one of the industry’s latest innovations—and it’s optimized for all Nintendo titles.
As with card games, Match-3 games are ideal for handhelds and tablets because of their touchscreen capabilities. A Match-3 game is exactly what the title implies: players must match three different symbols together to advance. However, most games involve other elements that make them a bit more dynamic and engaging.
They’re great for handhelds because they’re casual titles. This also makes them ideal for mobile gamers who don’t want to interact with gaming-centric devices like an Xbox or a Nintendo Switch. Once again, an iPad or Android tablet will offer more than enough in terms of graphics and latency to keep these gamers happy.
Role-playing gamers often take gamers on incredible journeys that involve developed and imaginative worlds, unforgettable characters and storylines, and more than a few hard-boiled side quests. Usually, there’s a strong emphasis on audio and graphic production. So, why would an RPG be good for a handheld or tablet device?
First, it’s important to note that modern handhelds don’t sacrifice audio or visual quality. And, according to gamers, the experience feels more personal and immediate than when an RPG plays out on a PC or TV screen. Similarly, a handheld is portable—which means that gamers are able to take their favorite RPG with them on the road. This is quite important for many people as RPG fans tend to become obsessed with the latest title, delving into their new adventures for hours on end.