I played some of DEADROP yesterday and, despite it being a very early snapshot, it was an interesting time. Certainly has some interesting potential. 🎮

What a pretty game this is! (Cozy Grove, Apple Arcade) 🎮

What I’m Playing - iOS Edition

I’ve always been a big fan of games and gaming, ever since my family had an Atari ST back in the day. I built a gaming PC last summer and have been enjoying the Switch and Xbox Series X since launch. One area of gaming I’ve been dabbling in, to one extent or another, has been on iOS, however.

The iOS ecosystem is absolutely chocker block full of a huge swath of games, with varying degrees of quality. It’s often difficult to find the gems, or games that haven’t been completely crippled with in-app purchases (IAPs). Because I’ve been having a lot of fun gaming on my iOS / iPadOS devices recently I just wanted to share a few highlights of some particular current favourites. I emphasise current because this is not a ‘Top 10 iOS games’ list, simply some games that I’ve been enjoying a lot of recently. So without further waffle, on with my Now Playing list for iOS.

Apple Arcade Adds 5 New Games

It looks like Apple aren’t slowing down with their new Apple Arcade launches quite yet. Just 5 days since the last update Apple has released a further 5 titles onto their subscription service. Judging by the short introduction videos on the App Store, they look to have the same high quality of the previous additions and they bring the total up to 80. Image courtesy of the Apple Arcade Twitter account

PSA: New Apple Arcade Games Now Available

For those keeping up, it looks like there are some new additions to Apple Arcade that have sprung up overnight, bringing the current total to 75. The new additions are: NIGHTMARE FARM - This looks like an interesting, if not a little strange title. After reading the App Store description it’s a little hard to even see what this ones about, but it’s labelled as a ‘simulation’. You apparently have to visit a farm and give the creatures there food and toys.

Apple Arcade Daily #9 - Word Laces

Whilst surving bullet storms or going on an adventure across the world can be great fun, you sometimes need to step back a bit in life and time the pace down a bit. Beautiful graphics or a pumping soundtrack usually make for an interesting gaming experience, but in the right situation, something far simpler is called for. It’s this time when quiet, relaxation and simpler time is required that today’s comes into its own.

Apple Arcade Daily #8 - Exit The Gungeon

Enter The Gungeon is one of my favourite games I own on the Switch, so when I heard that there was a sequel, of sorts, heading to Apple Arcade I was all in. The new game, Exit The Gungeon, by developer / producer Devolver Digital, takes what was enjoyable about the original, and creates a new, interesting mobile first experience. Described as a ‘bullet hell dungeon climber’, the game sees you take on the role of one of four different Gungeoneers.

Apple Arcade Daily #7 - Hexaflip

The last game I reviewed, Oceanhorn 2 is, as mentioned within, best experienced on the biggest screen you can, and ideally with a controller. Now that the weekend is over, I wanted to today look at a game that’s less time consuming and one that works well on the iPhone instead. Something fun for some short, weekday break bursts. When I’ve seen anyone on Twitter recommending an Apple Arcade game that is good to use on the iPhone, particularly in portrait mode, I’ve seen todays game recommended more often than not.

Apple Arcade Daily #6 - Oceanhorn 2

It was, and is, my intention to keep these micro reviews true to their name. To keep them short and sweet, and to simply act as a quick guide to whether or not a particular title is worth your time amongst the fairly crowded Apple Arcade line-up. A review for the game I want to look at today, Oceanhorn 2, should really just read: ’This game is fantastic and you’d be mad to not play it’, but I guess I should perhaps expand, just a little …

Apple Arcade Daily #5 - Super Impossible Road

Merriam Webster defines the world ‘impossible’ as something which is: Incapable of being or of occurring With that in mind, the next game I’ve chosen to look at in my daily Apple Arcade daily reviews, could be written up under the Trades Description Act. Not only was the first game not actually impossible, neither is this reimagining of an App Store classic, Super Impossible Road. While it may not really be impossible, it is a bit bloody hard …

Apple Arcade Daily #4 - tint.

After a manic week of work, family and digging through endless Apple Arcade games I needed a break and a little relaxation and, luckily I didn’t even have to leave the Arcade to find it. The next stop on my whistlstop tour of Apple Arcade is the ’relaxing col(u)or-mixing puzzle’ game, tint., by Bangkok based developer Lykke Studio. tint.1 requires you to solve a multitude of different puzzles through the power of watercolours.

Apple Arcade Daily #3 - Bleak Sword

The previous Apple Arcade reviews that I’ve written have been for games that, in my opinion, are best experienced on a larger screen1. In order to bring a little balance to the force I wanted to try a game that’s more at home on the iPhone. To that end, today’s Apple Arcade Daily micro-review is for Bleak Sword from Devolver Digital. The Apple Arcade listing for the game describes it as featuring Dark Fantasy Dioramas which is a perfect description of the graphical style used in the game.

Apple Arcade Daily #2 - Agent Intercept

Next up in our journey through the Apple Arcade catalogue is the excellent Agent Intercept by prolific development house PikPok. Agent Intercept sees you take on the role of a James Bond come Austin Powers type secret agent tasked with completing various missions in order to stop the dastardly CLAW organisation. The missions all, conveniently, involve chasing, racing, destroying and otherwise generally bothering a plethora of bad guys in your souped-up secret agent vehicle from the start of the course to the end.

Apple Arcade Daily #1 - Hot Lava

With the (early) launch of Apple Arcade to iOS / iPadOS beta testers, early adopters now have access to an impressive library of some really fun and interesting new games. While, right now at least, the list of available games is somewhat shy of the promised ‘over 100’1, it’s still an ample launch catalogue. Since it was first announced at this years WWDC I’ve been looking forward to trying Apple Arcade, so as soon as I spotted it had launched I jumped all over it.

Ah, finally got a hold of these bad boys. I was going to keep them boxed up, but life’s too short.

Taking Another Look At iOS Gaming

Gaming on iOS has been given a hard time for years now. Apple is forever being criticised because the Apple TV, and the rest of their product ecosystem haven’t made all other gaming platforms obsolete. In this sense, Apple is a victim of its own success to a certain extent. Unless Apple is completely dominating the market it’s in, to many people, they are instantly a failure. Gaming here is no exception it seems.

🎮 My Top 5 Most Played Switch Games

Due to a recent Nintendo Switch update, you can now re-order your game library in various different ways. One that I found interesting was ‘Play time’ order. I’ve had my beloved Switch since launch day in the UK, so I thought it was quite interesting to take a look at what my top 5 most played games have been so far. 1) The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

🎮 My Wizard of Oz Moment

If you’ve listened to the latest episode of the podcast you would have heard that I’ve been on a bit of a gaming kick recently, more so than I have for a while. I mentioned there that a lot of my time is spent on the Nintendo Switch, despite also owning a screaming fast Xbox One X, so I took a bit of time out to try and understand what the draw is of the Switch, and Nintendo in general.

🔗 PAL Keys - A Link To The Past

As I mentioned in Episode 19 of the podcast, I want to focus my time, both on the blog and elsewhere, on positivity and things that I enjoy. To this end, alongside the tech, I’m keen to put a bit more emphasis on gaming as well. I’ve even started to stream a little more frequently to my Mixer account. I have, however, realised being a streamer is far harder than I imagined.