In a big announcement on Monday, Apple made its foray into gaming subscription service with Apple Arcade. Apple says the service will feature over 100 new and exclusive games, including original releases from Hironobu Sakaguchi, Ken Wong, and Will Wright among others.
“Apple Arcade games will redefine games and be curated based on originality, quality, creativity, fun and their appeal to players of all ages,” Apple said in a statement after the announcement made in Cupertino.
With Apple Arcade, customers can try any game from a handpicked collection of titles. One can play any game without being interrupted by ads, ad tracking or additional purchases. Apple also promises that user privacy will be respected.
Promising a gaming service “unlike any other”, the company says Apple Arcade will be a place where “storytelling and design are pushed further than ever before”.
While the App Store already has nearly 300,000 free and paid games enjoyed around the world, Apple says paid games face tough competition from the free ones, and hence best of these games don’t manage to reach a larger audience. Apple Arcade aims to bring such games to the App Store’s more than 1 billion gaming customers with a single subscription.
“Apple Arcade is the perfect complement to the already enormously popular catalogue of free games on the App Store, making iOS the premier gaming platform for players of all ages,” the company said in the statement.
According to Apple, the service will feature games from Annapurna Interactive, Bossa Studios, Cartoon Network, Finji, Giant Squid, Klei Entertainment, Konami, LEGO, Mistwalker Corporation, SEGA, Snowman, ustwo games and many more.
Speaking at the Apple event on Monday, Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said: “The App Store is the world’s biggest and most successful game platform. Now we are going to take games even further with Apple Arcade, the first game subscription service for mobile, desktop and the living room.”
He added: “We are working with some of the most innovative game developers in the world to create over 100 new and exclusive games to play across iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple TV. Apple Arcade games will be great for families, respect user privacy and will not have ads or require any additional purchases. We think players of all ages are going to love Apple Arcade.”
Apple Arcade claims to offer a collection of “brand new games that will not be available on any other mobile platform or in any other subscription service”.
Apple Arcade will be formally launched later this year (Fall 2019) in more than 150 countries. There will be a new tab on the App Store across iOS, macOS and tvOS.
During the announcement, and also in the statement, Apple did not mention pricing for the subscription service.
The company has invited developers interested in being considered for Apple Arcade to get in touch with it.
Apple Arcade features
Users subscribing to Apple Arcade can try any game offered in the service “without risk”.
Every game will give the user access to all its features, content and future updates, for which no additional purchases will be required.
All the game can be played offline.
The Apple Arcade games can be played across Apple devices — iPhone, iPad, Mac and Apple TV. Also, users can pick up where they left off, even after switching devices.
New games will be added on a regular basis.