As a game developper in the AAA space, where a lot of key players are moving to subscription models, it was pretty interesting to see Apple go that way but for what feels like a arthouse curation of games. From the excellent Guildlings to the aforementioned Sayonara Wild Hearts or The Get Out Kids, there are a lot of games in here with a definitely indie sensibility, occupying a lot of the limited space covered by Arcade. I’m wondering whether that’s a stance from Apple, but it’s an interesting angle, while most other offers of the sort focus on the fact you can get the latest big release through their subscription service.
As for my own appreciation, having a taste for this sort of games, I’m of course happy with it, using mostly a PS4 contoller and having no trouble that way. On iPhone, I only play games that feel natural to the device, such as Guildlings or ChuChu Rocket (the one game that really pushed me over the fence, as a fan of the original on Dreamcast) which work perfectly with touch.
I’d be concerned only over the long term plan. Being a subscription, I expect the service to have a constant stream of content of consistent quality. That’s down to how happy developers end up being. I don’t really know how that works out for them, and if it’s a quality-driven service, they’ll need to keep top-developers interested. I also understand games will “rotate”, meaning they will come and go on Arcade. I guess you could still find a former Arcade game in the regular store, but then, what’s the model? Do I get access to it? If not, do I have a discount as an Arcade subscriber?
I’m cautiously optimistic, but they’ve set the bar pretty high for a release, and I’m curious as to how / whether they’ll keep it that high.