We may never have predicted it 10 years ago, but Apple has become a major name in the world of gaming. This is thanks to the rise of smartphones and with them the app stores that now carry so much of our day-to-day gaming material. In most cases, there’s very little difference between Android and iOS app offerings, with most popular games becoming available for both types of devices. But Apple can largely be credited with turning mobile gaming into what it is today—and it may also be responsible for some of the bigger innovations that are on the way.
Because of software improvements, business deals, and possibly even new devices, it seems we’re about to see some fairly major changes in iOS video games. Here are a few to keep an eye out for.
3D Camera Implementation
We never fully understand what will be included in a new Apple device until that device is shown off to the public. But with the iPhone 8 expected to come out this fall, one feature we can pretty much count on is a 3D camera. This feature will have a number of varied uses, but there are expected to be some pretty interesting gaming components included. For instance, it’s believed that the 3D camera will be able to recognise a user’s face, and essentially create a model of it within an app. That means that we might soon be controlling little-animated versions of ourselves in mobile games, potentially taking everything from lifestyle simulators to third person shooters to new, hyper-realistic levels.
As you’re no doubt aware by now, Nintendo has games in iOS stores and has at times given Apple exclusive rights to its titles. This started in 2016 when Super Mario Run accompanied the release of the iPhone 7. And though this game has since made its way to Android, it’s hard to imagine Nintendo and Apple won’t partner on similar efforts moving forward. The introduction of a mobile Mario game was a huge part of the iPhone 7 announcement, and the game was a great success. We don’t know of any specific forthcoming efforts, but we should expect more Nintendo involvement on Apple platforms moving forward.
This is less of an Apple-specific change, but it’s still something we should expect to see in mobile gaming. Browser-based casino games have been popular for some time, and they’re always experimenting with new tech and styles of gaming. But more recently, they’ve branched out to mobile platforms with excellent results. Modern mobile casinos are optimised for their format, meaning controls are built to work on mobile operating systems and with touchscreen controls. This optimisation is ongoing, however, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see a greater focus on games in this category on the next round of Apple devices to come out.
This is another development that isn’t exclusive to Apple, though it may be Apple that winds up planting the biggest seeds. Virtual reality has already emerged as an exciting ally for mobile gaming, and will undoubtedly be explored more thoroughly in the years to come. But it’s the worst kept secret in tech that Apple is working on a major augmented reality rollout, rather than embracing existing VR tools. There’s no telling what that means specifically for gaming, and it will likely be up to game developers to come up with creative ways to use Apple’s tech. But when you keep in mind that the viral hit Pokémon GO thrived on a brand-new AR gaming concept, you have to wonder just how big an impact Apple’s efforts will make in this category.
Stay tuned for the updates.
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