Awesome things have been happening over at TouchArcade this week, as we picked up not one but four additional writers. This has significantly increased our game review output, making our top reviews page really worth having bookmarked to keep up on all of the best iOS games that have come out recently. We’ve awarded top marks to Layton’s Mystery Journey, Linelight, Miracle Merchant, and The Elder Scrolls: Legends. So many five-star reviews in one week even had me re-publish an editorial I wrote back in 2016 about the unique challenges of reviewing mobile games, which is worth a look if you’re interested in some behind the scenes stuff surrounding review scores.
Anyway, as usual, it’s never a boring week in the world of iOS gaming, and the saga surrounding Pokemon Go Fest continues. If you missed the recap a few weeks ago, it was such a disaster that Niantic eventually just gave everyone refunds. Aside from offering an official apology, they also announced that upcoming European events will be postponed. Hopefully this will give them an opportunity to reevaluate connectivity options so they don’t get another park full of tens of thousands of people who can’t play the game. In other Pokemon Go news, the Legendary Pokemon Moltres is now available in game.
With iOS 11 approaching, we’ve been closely watching our list of 32-bit games that are going to stop working, with fingers crossed for updates. As of this week, Jet Car Stunts and Canabalt both got 64-bit updates and Square Enix confirmed that Final Fantasy Tactics will be getting a 64-bit update next month. As far as classic titles that should be on everyone’s iPhone, at least one of those three games is going to be on anyone’s list, if not all of them. Now, I’ve just got my fingers crossed for an update to Dungeon Raid…
If you’re the kind of person who looks for mobile games with incredibly distinctive art styles, the survival horror game White Night should be on your radar. It’s entirely in black and white, and takes place inside of a mysterious mansion where you solve puzzles to discover its path. The black and white art utilizes light and shadows in interesting ways, which I’m excited to experience. White Night was received very well when it launched on Steam, and will be available on mobile this fall.
There were some interesting developments in the Android world this week, with Google making some tweaks to the way the Google Play store works. In a nutshell, they’re going to be using the analytics that Android reports back on how often apps crash, how much battery they use, how often they’re deleted, and other similar metrics to determine ranking. On paper, it sounds great, as this should send junky apps and games that crash all the time, burn your battery, and get instantly deleted to the bottom of the pile. Once all of this shakes out, I’m really curious to see which approach ends up working better: Google’s analytical approach, or Apple’s hyper-curated iOS 11 App Store.
Finally, over on TouchArcade we’re huge fans of everything Rocketcat Games has ever released. We gave their most recent game, Death Road to Canada, five stars in our review, and their entire App Store catalog is similarly good. After a year of updating Death Road, they’re shifting gears over to working on a new game which we were all pretty sure was a joke. It’s called I Can’t Believe My Boyfriend is Some Sorta Fish Creature!, with developer Kepa Auwae describing his motivations as, “I want to make the Dark Souls of boyfriend simulation games.” It’s inspired by the Sega Dreamcast game Seaman, which was delightfully weird, so add in some Rocketcat charm and I’m sure this game will be … something else.
That’s it for the biggest stories this week. As usual, if you want to closely follow what’s going on in the world of iOS gaming, be sure to visit TouchArcade. We post all sorts of news, reviews, guides, and much more that will help you make sense of the cluttered mess that is the gaming aisle of the App Store.