The rise and fall of Apple Arcade, the story of a failure

On June 2, Apple Arcade celebrated its second consecutive month without including a single new game in its catalog. Something extremely surprising if we consider that the Cupertino company launched this service precisely with the intention of satisfying gamers with entertaining news.

Be that as it may, this second consecutive month without games makes the situation of Apple Arcade very clear in the service catalog of the Cupertino company, in absolute Limbo . Not all the chiringuitos that the Cupertino company sets up have to be a success, and it seems that Apple Arcade is only confirming this.


  • 1 From hype and cymbal to silence
  • 2 He never had real appeal
  • 3 The great asset of Apple TV
  • 4 Without great references or franchise games

From hype and cymbal to silence

The Cupertino company announced on September 10, 2019 the launch of a new subscription service, one of those that Steve Jobs likes. In this case we are talking about our protagonist today, Apple Arcade. Its launch was scheduled for September 19 in more than 150 countries and the rest is historical. It came with a presentation  with great fanfare , with a month of trial for all users and a couple of collaborations with Konami such as the mythical Frogger Toy Town. However, it seems that everything was in borage water.

The news about Apple Arcade in 2021 is almost non-existent, from time to time it announces a catalog of new releases that already mostly lack an attractive exclusivity index and that seem to be more of the same. The large video game developers have stayed quite far from Apple Arcade, deciding to bet on the traditional application store where they will probably obtain a greater revenue for their content. So much so that for two months there has not been a single new title in Apple Arcade, can you imagine the covers of digital media if this was done by Netflix or HBO?

Never had real appeal

It is not that the video game environment has been precisely frozen since then, there have been several great successes in the App Store such as Call of Duty Mobile or Geshin Impact. The reality is that Apple Arcade seems to have been ostracized with small casual games. And it is that the nickname of Arcade seems to have been raised to the maximum expression, however, they do not offer any attraction and you probably end up spending much more on the monthly subscription than you would invest in video games of that style for your mobile devices.

Apple has not known how to play the great trick of Apple TV, in the same way that these games are far from having the ability to put the GPU of Apple devices such as the iPad Pro or the latest iPhone against the ropes. The reality is that they are video games that rarely pose an entertaining challenge and that do not shine precisely in the technical section, what is the attraction then? Well, simply none. In fact, I doubt that many users have decided to continue with the service several months later unless you have it in your Apple One subscription.

The great asset of Apple TV

Apple does not have a console, and we already talked to you previously in a compilation of the great failures of Apple (in which we could now include Apple Arcade) of Pippin, the console of the Cupertino company. We don’t blame you if you don’t remember it, nobody remembers it. In fact, perhaps it could have put Tim Cook on notice about the suitability of entering a market as cannibalistic as video games. Apple Arcade has been the latest victim and one of the reasons is precisely the fact that it lacks a platform to fully promote the video game.

The Apple TV could have been a decent platform, with plenty of power for causal games in which to hang out with the family or even for the little ones in the house. Let’s face it, an Apple TV with Apple’s processing technology would leave nothing to be desired over a Nintendo Switch, proving that graphics aren’t everything. In addition, Apple has also announced with great fanfare the rugged compatibility of Apple TV with the control of the PlayStation 5, the DualSense.

And despite all this, the Apple TV is still not an attractive device for many reasons, when it should be the main device through which all Apple Arcade pivots. However, Apple has focused on mobile platforms, not wanting to realize that what works best on mobile are slots (no Candy Crush is not a video game …).

Without great references or franchise games

If you look at it, in the end we find the usual thing in the charts, the odd Call of Duty, the “new” Fortnite, the  Pay-to-Win like FIFA 21 and so on. However, in Apple Arcade the only thing that has opened our mouths a bit has been a cheap copy of Mario Kart in charge of the great blue hedgehog and SEGA, a company that refuses to die permanently. As much as it hurts to see Sonic in those circumstances, the reality is that the video game is not cool enough to pay around five euros a month.

And this is how Apple, despite all this time, has not known how to ally itself with a large franchise in order to offer attractive content for users, we have Electronic Arts that turns everything it touches into gold, Star-style franchises Wars, special relationship with Disney Pixar with all that it represents. However, no charismatic characters or marketing stars appear on the cover of Apple Arcade, in this case, what would attract you to pay for the service?

These are the reasons why Apple Arcade is mortally wounded, I do not know if it is worse that some users have forgotten that it exists or that many others have never directly heard of the service. Meanwhile, we will continue playing some other  free-to-play of dubious morality.

by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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