The Apple Arcade launched on September 19th; it is a subscription-based service which provides unlimited access to a library of games on compatible Apple devices ($5USD/mo). If you currently have a device with iOS 13, you should be good to go. The Apple Arcade is a refreshing and welcoming presence in the mobile gaming scene. From what I’ve experienced, this just might be our savior from an app store filled with microtransaction loaded garbage.
The service features a wide library of games and genres, all available to download, no streaming, no “always online”. But the most encouraging ingredient of the Apple Arcade is that none of the games are permitted to have microtransactions or in-game purchases. With iOS 13 now supporting PS4 and Xbox controllers, Apple has decided to strike the iron while it is still hot.
I’ll be honest, for me, mobile games will never replace console or PC gaming. But mobile games can still fill a valuable niche, games you can play in short bursts, that are easy to pick-up and put-down. That is what I was expecting from Apple Arcade, and my expectations were surpassed. I quickly became obsessed with a couple of the games that I stumbled on, the concepts explored were so unique, the experiences and production values were far higher than mobiles games I’ve previously played. Playing these games reminded me of the glory days of mobile gaming, right around the time the iPod Touch 2G was released. No microtransactions, no reskins, and no clones. Each game brought something totally different to the table with their distinct ideas and mechanics.
If you are someone who has always had a negative impression of mobile gaming (like me) you really should give Apple Arcade a shot. It is free for the first month, giving you ample opportunity to see what’s out there to match your tastes. It’ll surely change your impression of what mobile gaming can be. My personal favorite is WHAT THE GOLF?, a golf game which plays perfectly on mobile. It has an amazing charm and is filled with mind boggling mechanics inspired from some of the greatest games of all time.
I hope you check out the Apple Arcade as there’s a game out there for everyone! Let’s kill what made mobile games horrific and bring back what made them amazing, and that’s unrelenting innovation.