R.I.P. iPhone 3GS – we knew her well

With the iPhone 5 looming, it’s with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to the beloved iPhone 3GS…

It took Apple two years to get it right, but after the first iPhone and the 3GS’s littler brother, the 3G, we finally had a device that balanced design and power in equal and powerful measure.

It looks somewhat bulky and, dare I say it, ugly by today’s handset standards. But, back in 2009, the 3GS was hands down the best smart phone on the market. Along with the 3G, its design was the catalyst to the recent Apple Vs Samsung court case.

Two new iPhones later (the 4 and 4S) and the 3GS is still available as the lower spec, entry model into owning an iPhone. Come the release of the iPhone 5 – technically the 6th iPhone, as the 3GS was counted as the iPhone 3, while the 4S is more of a 4.5 – and the 3GS will be available no more, replaced instead no doubt with a low-spec iPhone 4 or 4S.

So, here at TouchGen we thought we’d give the 3GS a send off, by highlighting five of the best games that graced it’s curvaceous body and non-retina screen way back when free-love was rife and everyone wore flared trousers. Too far back? Ok, 2009 then!

Space Invaders Infinity Gene

Evolution is a powerful thing, both unpredictable and exciting. Space Invaders Infinity Gene was all about evolution, and still feels as fresh today as it did then. Not just taking Space Invaders, and making it look fancy and fresh. No, what Taito did was quite unique. Creating an experience that turned the traditional shooter on its head.
Review >

Zen bound

An immersive casual game that soothed the senses. In it you explored the beautifully rendered sculpted objects as you rotate and wrap them in rope. Yes, it still doesn’t quite make sense, but the controls were insanely intuitive, and the sound and visuals mesmerizing.
Review >

Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor

A simple concept where you played as generic run-of-the-mill house spider, trying to get some dinner. Highly intuitive ‘web-spinning’ touch controls meant playing the role of the spyder was never a chore. Its graphics and sound design oozed charm to boot.
Review >

Real Racing

Real Racing was – and with its sequel – still is the best racing experience on the iPhone. Not only did it feature PS2/Xbox1 rivaling graphics, with a large set of cars and tracks, but it also boasted an excellent social aspect (ahead of its time back i 2009), with online racing leagues, and the ability to post replays to youtube. A classic!
Review >


It’s not a stretch to call Hybrid the best RPG on the iPhone, even now. This game combined unique iPhone controls with a unique storyline, fantastic characters, fast paced gameplay, and tons and tons of depth. Take Soul Caliber and Final Fantasy and mixed them together, and you get a fresh and satisfying take on the classic RPG.
Review >

Goodbye fair 3GS. It’s been emotional!


TwitterFacebookGoogle BookmarksDiggStumbleUponShare
  • http://www.touchgen.com/ Matt Dunn

    Oh the memories. Oh wait, I always skipped the “S” generations. Oh well. ;)

  • DeInit

    …3GS will get more support on iOS6 than the iPad 1, in fact, 6 will install (albeit with a limited set of functionalities) on the 3GS whereas it won’t on the iPad 1. So I would say reports of its death are exaggerated and premature.

  • jeffyg3

    The step up from the iPhone 3G, the 3GS is counted as the iPhone 3 while the iPhone 4S is counted as the 4.5? How does that make any sense at all? If the iPhone 3GS is counted as the iPhone 3 because its the 3rd generation iPhone, then it makes sense to count the iPhone 4S as the iPhone 5 because its the 5th generation iPhone. It seems like people were too cought up in the previous MASSIVE hype of the big screen iPhone 5 after the iPhone 4 that they automatically forget the iPhone 4S really is the iPhone 5, not the 4.5.

  • kistajk

    My fave games before iPhone 4 came out: Fieldrunners, Broken Sword, Zen Bound, Snail Mail, Samurai Puzzle Battle.

  • jeffyg3

    Ahh yeah, Snail Mail. I loved that game, have many memories playing that on my iPhone 2 in college when I should have been looking up at the board while being taught :/

  • http://www.touchgen.com/ Matt Dunn

    It’s no longer being sold though, which was the basis of this article. ;)

  • DeInit

    You have a solid point there.

  • nigelwood

    That was the exact point I was trying to make Jeffyg3

  • nigelwood

    Loved that game, reminded me of the Sonic bonus ring collecting levels