GameClub, the subscription service that revives long-forgotten iOS games, launched this week. Now, for the same price as an Apple Arcade subscription, you can access some of the classic games of iPhones past.
Older games frequently perished in the extinction level events also known as “iOS updates.” Others ceased to be profitable enough for their original developers to justify supporting them. In any case, lots of previously well-known, well-regarded games vanished since the App Store first started hosting games in 2008. GameClub’s purpose is to bring those games back, by MacGuyvering the original source code of these sometimes-ancient titles to work with the latest version of iOS.
The wait is over! GameClub is here! You can find our entire library on the App Store by searching for "GameClub", but the best starting point is our app which serves as a hub for the GameClub experience: https://t.co/w11HgP7dvK
— GameClub (@GameClub) October 24, 2019
GameClub has been in development for some time. When TNW interviewed Eli Hodapp, VP of Business Development, he revealed that one of the lengthiest parts of the process involves tracking down the original game developers and convincing them to relinquish the rights to GameClub (the company has to own the rights in order to publish the game on the App Store). But the result is a loving tribute to the games of yore.
Inadvertently, the developers of GameClub have created a very complimentary mirror service to Apple Arcade. While Apple Arcade offers new games for a low monthly price, GameClub offers a selection of classics for the same price. Both services operate without ads or microtransactions, going against what has been usual for iOS games for the last several years.
GameClub co-founder Dan Sherman said the service is in part a response to “freemium fatigue,” adding: “Consumers are drowning in ads and in-app purchases and premium game creators have been crowded out by a model that only works for a handful of genres. GameClub provides a new home for the best developers to come back to mobile to the benefit of gamers everywhere.” While Apple hasn’t used those exact words to describe Arcade, the fact that it has emphasized the lack of micropayments or ads makes it seem as though it’s just as tired of them as GameClub is.
To subscribe to GameClub, download the GameClub app, which acts as a central hub for your subscription. Like Apple Arcade, there’s a free month-long trial, with the price being $4.99 a month after that. To see the complete list of games, visit GameClub’s site.