How Apple Arcade could make Apple a major player in gaming

Apple Arcade is an interesting new service due to be launched this year by Apple. Time will tell if it can take iOS/Mac gaming to the next level, but the premise is definitely worth watching out for.

Macworld have a good overview:

Beginning sometime in the fall, you’ll be able to pay Apple an unspecified subscription fee that grants access to around 100 “new and exclusive” games. None of the games will have in-app purchases, and they will only be playable on iOS devices and Macs. All of the games will be accessible offline.

This is all smart stuff as games have been among the primary drivers of revenue for the App Store for years now. Apple Arcade could be a sign that Apple is finally taking games seriously

The importance of MFI controllers was also highlighted, which for me would be the real game changer. If Apple can produce a great controller, or allow other manufacturers to, along with incentivizing developers to create in depth, ad free games, then that would make for a really great gaming platform. 1

Subtle clues that Apple wants to get serious about gaming have been dropping for months. With iOS 12, for instance, Apple finally allowed MFi (Made for iPhone) controllers to use the “L3” and “R3” buttons, which you normally activate by pressing down on a gamepad’s thumbsticks. For whatever reason, Apple previously wouldn’t certify controllers that allowed you to do this, which effectively made some iOS ports unplayable. I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that this kept iOS gaming from being bigger than it could have been. The new Rotor Riot controller is the first one to take advantage of that, and I have little doubt that others will follow suit in the near future.

  1. A controller and an iPad, or even a Mac, would be a great gaming setup. Play anywhere, get up and running in seconds, no wires, compact.