The quarantine over the last several weeks has left us stuck at home, trying our best to find ways to keep ourselves busy and to also entertained. I’ve been a big supporter of Apple Arcade since the launch last year and have been doing my best to keep up with all the games being added, updated, and completed in my backlog.
If you’re new to Apple Arcade or a returning subscriber, you’ll be happy to know that there are dozens of games worth playing and each one is surprisingly superb quality. Being a premium service means that the games offered have zero in-app purchases and ads; which has become a huge issue in the App Store over the last few years. Games have moved away from offering an entry fee instead of freemium mechanics that often maliciously pull players in, but Apple Arcade offers some of the finest games on mobile for one low price.
I’ve put together a list of games available on Apple Arcade that I have been spending a lot of time playing in quarantine. If you’re looking for something to play and don’t feel like being glued to a television set, your iPhone or iPad is fine.
Crossy Road Castle
Crossy Road Castle is an endless spinning tower of chaotic arcade fun, full of secrets, collectables, boss encounters and multiplayer mayhem.
Gather your family and friends and see how far you can go up the towers. With procedurally generated levels, your tower run will be different every time. Play alone or with friends; with touch controls or console controllers. Even a 4-year old can join the fun with multiplayer designed for group play.
I’ve spent more time than I want to admit climbing the castle and honestly, it’s hard to put down the game once the momentum gets going. If you’re looking for a game with replayability, this is one that offers a lot of replayability.
Lego Builder’s Journey
Lego Builder’s Journey is a quiet game that’s full of charm and offers some excellent puzzles on your mobile device. Lego Builder’s Journey is an artistic, nonverbal puzzle adventure with meditative music where players build to solve challenges while moving through stunning brick-built universes, which showcase the endless possibilities of the creative play material and deliver a poetic narrative highlighting the importance of play in our lives.
If you are looking for a game to keep you thinking and to challenge you, this is it.
What the Golf?
I’m not one for playing a golf video game, but this one is absolutely a cannot miss. It’s weird, it’s quirky, and it’s challenging. Things get weirder the more you play, and each level is never the same as the previous one. If you want something that’s hard to put down but easy to get sucked into, this is one of the best games available on Apple Arcade. Do not skip out on this gem.
Sayonara Wild Hearts
A game like Sayonara Wild Hearts is exactly what an Apple Arcade experience should be. It’s a game that’s digestible in small, 2-minute bite-sized chunks but can also be completed in 30-40 minutes. The beauty is that after you’ve completed the game, Album Arcade unlocks. The new mode cuts out all the interstitials like scoreboards to keep the game flowing from start to finish.
If you want a game full of flash, personality, and an excellent soundtrack that will keep you bumping your head for hours after finishing it, Sayonara Wild Hearts will pull you in and impress you.
Fallen Knight looks great and has roots in classic side-scrolling action games. Set in the future, there’s intense swordplay mixed with exhilarating boss battles. You play as Lancelot, a Knight of the Round Table. After his city is overrun with enemies, he’ll have to work against them revealing an ages-old secret. The game features responsive action across six stages with intense boss fights, a unique parry/disarm system and multiple endings.
Rediscover gravity and explore a beautiful Escher-esque world of impossible architecture. Geometry repeats infinitely in every direction and falling down leads you back to where you started. Manipulate gravity to change your perspective and see the world in new ways. Master the rules of the universe and restore a barren world with vegetation and life.
Hot Lava is one of the true standouts on Apple Arcade. Although I have only scraped the surface, it’s a game that represents the vision Apple Arcade sets out. It’s a game that doesn’t beg for your undivided attention for hours on hours, yet it has an inciting gameplay hook that’ll keep you coming back time and time again.
It’s best played with a controller and sinks its hooks into you from the minute you start but honestly, it’s a genuine blast to figure out the right way to get through a level.
Grindstone is addicting. That’s all I need to say. Developed by Capy Games out of Toronto, this is Bejeweled on steroids and it’s one of the most exciting games available on Apple Arcade. If you like games full of cartoon-ish blood and guts, as well as matching threes (or more!) than this is the perfect game for you.
You can play Grindstone in bite-sized chunks or over lengthy periods of time and it’s got some of the most addictive mechanics out there.
After watching the trailer for Sneaky Sasquatch, a game developed by Vancouver’s award-winning studio, RAC7, and not seeing how interesting the game is, now is the perfect time to try it out. Sneaky Sasquatch is a stealth adventure game that is loved by gamers of all ages who enjoy the thrill of short, relaxing, light-hearted play sessions. Players are free to simply do whatever they want and have fun being a little mischievous as they live the life of a Sasquatch. Sneak around campsites, go fishing at the lake, disguise themselves in human clothing, eat food from unguarded coolers and picnic baskets, get chased around by the park ranger….you know, do regular, everyday Sasquatch stuff.
There’s even a new update out that allows the cutesy Sasquatch to wander into town as a new playable area opens up and you’re free to explore the town. You’ll need to finish the storyline first though, and what better time than during quarantine?
Don’t let the simplistic looking graphics fool you. Bleak Sword is a challenging game that only gets harder as you master the art of parrying, dodging, and attacking waves of enemies. It’s easily one of the most challenging games Apple Arcade offers and you’ll need to learn how to tackle each enemy to survive.
We adore Skate City and have yet to put the game down. Since launching in October of last year, the game which is one of the best skateboarding games in years, has been a staple of Apple Arcade advertising.
Using a side-scrolling perspective and intuitive controls, this is a fun game for any age. Tapping moves you forward, swiping in different directions offers a wealth of tricks and learning to keep your balance grinding rails is exciting.