Game of Phones: Every week I’ll pick a game for iOS or Android that’s perfect for long journeys, the commute or just when you want to switch off from the outside world.
Back in 2015 no-one could have anticipated the success that Fallout Shelter would become. Released as a free-to-play game for iOS and Android, the humble building-management game has now been downloaded a staggering 120 million times.
Based on the hugely successful Fallout series of video games, Fallout Shelter is at its core incredibly simple to play. You’ve been presented with one of the nuclear bunkers that appear in the Fallout series and then charged with growing it both in size and population.
To accomplish this you’ll need to build new living quarters, mess halls, gymnasiums, educational facilities and power stations in order to keep the lights on.
You’ll also need to do all of this while managing three key resources: energy, food and water. If any of them drop below the required level your residents will start to get unhappy.
It’s a surprisingly difficult balance to maintain, and it’s one that will start ruling more of your life than you’ll feel comfortable with.
Keep all three resources high enough though and your residents will grow stronger, strong enough in fact that you can start sending them off into the radioactive wilderness.
For those of you who stopped playing after a year (myself included) Fallout Shelter has since been transformed into a game with surprising depth.
Yes, you still need to keep your vault workers happy but exploration is now as much a part of the game as staying at home. This makes the balance all the more difficult to maintain and in turn actually makes the game even more addictive to play.
Fallout Shelter isn’t hard, it’s just really really addictive. You’ll make a few tweaks to your vault and then an hour later go straight back in and make some more tweaks. It’s infuriating, and yet glorious.
It’s also not desperate for your money either, which is probably why it has been so successful.
In short, if you’re one of the 12 people who hasn’t tried Fallout Shelter, try it immediately and if you’re someone who left it, return immediately.
Fallout Shelter is available on iOS, Android, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch and PC.