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Six Colors

by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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Apple bolsters Arcade catalog with classic games

Apple’s vice president of the App Store, Matt Fischer, in a press release today:

“Today we’re launching our biggest expansion since the service debuted, now offering more than 180 great games that include new Arcade Originals, Timeless Classics, and App Store Greats. Whether it’s brand new games made exclusively for Arcade like ‘NBA 2K21 Arcade Edition,’ ‘Star Trek: Legends,’ and ‘The Oregon Trail,’ all-time App Store favorites like ‘Monument Valley’ and ‘Threes!,’ or traditional games like ‘Chess’ and ‘Solitaire,’ we have an incredible variety of gameplay experiences for everyone.”

Thirty new games join the catalog today, which is the biggest single-day addition since the service first started.

Hard numbers on Apple Arcade subscriptions aren’t something that Apple has shared yet, but it has certainly felt as though the service has had kind of a “meh” reaction after the initial roll out. Adding more well known games, including “out of date” classics on the App Store, is an interesting move, but one that walks a line between attracting newer platform customers (look at all these classics you may have missed!) and appealing to the nostalgia of long-time users (remember these favorites?). It is, however, clever to bring back those classic games ad-free and totally unlocked.

I signed up for Arcade again last year when there was a three free months deal, and accidentally ended up paying for a month or two extra, but I recently canceled my subscription after realizing I wasn’t really using it. I’m not sure the influx of new titles is going to change my mind on it, but I can imagine that it may very well appeal to those still looking for a “bang for your buck” experience.

Apple’s always struggled with gaming, and Arcade doesn’t seem to have proved the exception. One wonders exactly how many of its subscribers are those who get it “for free” with an Apple One bundle.

—Linked by Dan Moren

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