30 unbelievably good free windows phone games

How to: sideload classic Windows Phone 8 games onkhổng lồ a modern Lumia

Published by Steve Litchfield at 15:33 UTC, February 23rd 2020

The really interesting thing about Windows 10 Smartphone is that it"s fully backwards compatible with old Windows Phone 8 software. Even for games. Which you really wouldn"t think after browsing the Microsoft Store, since many of the classic titles aren"t there anymore. But that"s no reason to lớn be disheartened, especially if you"re prone to a little installing and unzipping, since there are archives of classic WP8 games online and it"s the work of moments (once you"ve got everything in place) to lớn "sideload" these titles to your Lumia 950 or similar in the current day.

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Games like Fruit Ninja, Cut the Rope, và Angry Birds were classics (the liên kết here go khổng lồ our original reviews/mentions baông xã in the day) & have sầu been much missed in the Windows 10 Smartphone Store. It"s not clear when they disappeared, but in theory if you had a Lumia 930 or similar then there"s every chance you might still have some of these games on your phone, working well, & which have persisted through numerous OS updates.

Baông xã in the real world, most of us have sầu done at least one factory rephối or device replacement since 2014/2015 & we were somewhat taken abaông xã by our favourite games not being restored/re-installed as part of getting the phone or new device up and running.

Now, I do understvà how the commercial world works & the publishers of these games didn"t want to expover tư vấn resources on a dwindling software platkhung, so their titles were eventually withdrawn, but there"s ZERO technical reason why the games themselves shouldn"t work under the lachạy thử Windows 10 sản phẩm điện thoại. Hence this article.

Over the years there have sầu been various attempts to lớn archive Windows Phone games (each of which typically exists as a single ".xap" archive), some more successful than others, but thanks khổng lồ a reader here I was pointed to lớn this archive, which is the one I"ll use below. (Small print time: as you"d expect, AAWP takes no responsibility for the status or contents of files found at such external URLs, it"s the reader"s/downloader"s risk!)

The games all bởi vì seem lớn be full và not trial versions, which raises an extra legal/moral question. But given that the developers themselves were the ones who abandoned the platkhung and stopped taking our money four years ago, it doesn"t seem too problematic khổng lồ worry about not paying them money in 20trăng tròn. If any of the game developers are listening/reading this then just put your title bachồng in the Store officially and we"ll plug it to lớn high heaven & start buying again!

In addition, importantly, note that many of us have already bought these games, i.e. developers have already had our money, years ago, and it"s us, the users, who have sầu been inconvenienced by not being able to lớn play the games we paid for, after a device change or rephối. As a huge Angry Birds tín đồ who paid with my own money for all the titles in the range between 2013 and năm ngoái, it"s been annoying, to say the least, not to lớn be able khổng lồ play the games I paid for on the platform I paid for them on, etc.


The first and classic Angry Birds, here played in 2020 on the Lumia 950 XL. Ah, the memories! Mind you, I"ve sầu had lớn start from the very first cấp độ again!!

In any case, here on AAWP I wanted to show how khổng lồ vì the side-loading. You"ll need:

a Windows 7, 8 or 10 PC of some kindabout an hourenough tech confidence to know what to vì chưng with .zip & ".7z" archives, how to lớn navigate folders, and so on

There"s another caveat too - in order khổng lồ play the games then you need khổng lồ leave sầu your phone in "developer" mode. Not a huge issue, I suspect, since if you"re clued up enough khổng lồ be tackling this then you"ll also know khổng lồ avoid any malicious apps you might encounter. But worth noting. If you take your phone out of "developer" mode then you"ll get an error message when launching such side-loaded titles.

If you"re happy to proceed then read on....

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1. Install the official MicrosoftWindows Phone SDK 8.0 Lite:Download it Hereor here (smaller download)

2. Install the official MicrosoftWindows Phone SDK 8.1 Lite:Download it Here.


3. Download the WPV XAP. Deployer Tool:from here. Yes, it"s third các buổi party software và all bets are off. But then Windows 10 mobile itself is now officially unsupported, so we"re definitely in "enthusiast, it"s worth a go" territory. I"ve sầu tried the tool & it does what it claims lớn, with no ill effects or anti-virut warnings.

4. Download any or all of the XAPhường. archived games from this Internet archive sầu (all liên kết here, by the way, work as of February 20trăng tròn, when writing this piece.)

5. On your Windows 10 mobile phone, go inlớn Settings/Update và Security/For developers" và mix the toggle khổng lồ "Developer mode". Don"t worry about any warnings - you know what you"re doing!

6. Plug your phone into lớn the PC & wait while all the recognition steps settle down (30 seconds or so)

7. RunWPV XAPhường Deployer. Click the "Add Xap files"button and add the games you want to install. Then clichồng on "Deploy".

The games should appear in the phone"s Apps danh mục within a few seconds and can be run or pinned as usual.

All very interesting - most "abandoned" platforms end up with a vestigial user base of enthusiasts who find ways khổng lồ work around any gaps in the platkhung - and Windows 10 điện thoại seems to be no different! Comments welcome.

PS. Thanks lớn AAWP. reader Lasitha Samarasinghe for his help with this feature.

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Platforms: Windows Phone 7.5, General, Windows Phone 8 Categories: How To, Software


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