Before you misunderstand and go off on a tangent to make vitriolic comments based only on a title, we would like to point out that in the editorial team we know well that mobile gaming (intended for smartphones and tablets) is the most profitable part of the gaming sector; just as we are perfectly aware of the numbers that smartphone and tablet games reach in certain parts of the world (especially in Asia).
We are talking, however, about experiences stitched around the experience offered by this type of device. Excluding the Genshin Impact phenomenon for a moment, think for a second about the various Triple A titles that have followed one another on the mobile scene over the last 15 years. May it be the peculiar unpublished chapter of Dead Space released in 2011, the terrible Devil May Cry 4 Refrain, the excellent Call Of Duty Mobile or the futuristic, at least for the time, Infinity Blade trilogythe only titles that have survived the passage of time, were those capable of guaranteeing a formula that captivated the masses by offering both short intervals of disengagement and more substantial gaming sessions.
Those who, like the writer, have experienced the entire evolution of the smartphone sector, remember well what it meant to play Dead Space on a 4″ screen, using a touch screen that tried to simulate a controllerbeing constantly interrupted by notifications and finding ourselves, at the end of the game, with a ridiculous percentage of battery remaining, perhaps shortly after the lunch break.
It’s true, now the situation has changed, the screens are larger, there are solutions such as the backbone to avoid the much-hated touch controls and, above all, there are undoubtedly high-performance tablets that would guarantee the right comfort on the move but here the situation is different , Here we’re talking about smartphones and Apple’s blunder about wanting to sell it, crypticly, as a gaming smartphone. capable of surpassing in power any other portable solution currently on the market.
Hearing about Ray Tracing in the Triple A games that will arrive, among other things in their console version, in the next few months on the AppStore has given us a lot of doubts. While on the one hand it is clear that that entire segment of yesterday’s Keynote was designed to further showcase the muscles of the top-of-the-range models of the iPhone 15 lineon the other hand the question that gripped us the most was: but why?!
Now, although it is still early to talk about the sales model, the price of these titles and the details relating to the compatibility between the various devices (it would undoubtedly be interesting if it were declared that a player who purchases Resident Evil Village on Mac will also be available for iPhone), it is clear instead that, at least for us, it is a move with a very niche market, made up mostly of curious people who, fascinated by the desire to show their friends what the new Cupertino smartphone can do, will invest the money in one case of the titles presented in these two days. But they are a limited and well-defined case.
For most gamers, that moment of Apple’s presentation was just a moment of ostentation in which the first useful excuse capable of attracting the attention of the masses was exploited. Without going into the discussion that to use an iPhone 15 Pro as a console you are faced with an entry price of €1239 (at least in Italy), given that since it is a smartphone it would have various uses and not just playing, how many Hardcore Gamer would they opt to “enjoy” Resident Evil: Village with Ray Tracing active on a screen that reaches a maximum of 6.7″? Especially how much do they famously complain about the 7″ Steam Deck, Rog Ally and Nintendo Switch OLED model?
And what would be the “typical” use? Finding yourself on your lunch break playing with a Backbone, connected to your iPhone 15 Pro, trying to immerse yourself in a Triple A while the screen is flooded with notifications arriving from that social bubble in which each of us lives? Or you would opt to remove every notification, thus isolating the device main to stay in touch with the world, to be able to enjoy the challenging themes covered by Death Stranding in peace?
We’re not saying that Apple shouldn’t flex its muscles every chance it gets, mind you, but present the iPhone as a gaming console, especially showing the smartphone connected to a Dualsense (just to increase the things to carry with him) it seemed to us to be a short-sighted move and which wasted the opportunity to keep this information for future events.
Imagine the presentation of the future iPad line, in which Apple’s next step in the world of gaming is presented, that is, allowing buyers of future tablets to be able to use them as a hybrid gaming console. Roll up the Folio, place the iPad in landscape, connect the Dualsense and enjoy an experience including Ray Tracing and high performance both on the tablet screen and, possibly, in Airplay on the home screen.
In closing this presentation, add a short appendix where you inform customers that if they purchase one of the Triple A titles present in the AppStore, they will also be able to use it on the iPhone 15 Pro with the same performance. Same show of strength in a much more sensible and coherent context.