Home / News / Week in Views – Mobile gets blanked at the BAFTAs, Apple goes retro and Nintendo | Pocket Gamer.biz

Week in Views – Mobile gets blanked at the BAFTAs, Apple goes retro and Nintendo | Pocket Gamer.biz

Week in Views - | Pocket Gamer.biz

The games industry moves quickly and while stories may come and go there are some that we just can’t let go of…

So, to give those particularly thorny topics a further going over we’ve created a weekly digest where the members of the PocketGamer.biz team share their thoughts and go that little bit deeper on some of the more interesting things that have happened in mobile gaming in the past week.

Craig Chapple
Head of Content
Craig Chapple is a freelance analyst, consultant and writer with specialist knowledge of the games industry. He has previously served as Senior Editor at PocketGamer.biz, as well as holding roles at Sensor Tower, Nintendo and Develop.

No love for mobile at the BAFTA Game Awards

Mobile has long had a rough relationship with the BAFTA Game Awards and other events of its ilk.

You can argue whether awards matter, but I think it’s great that organisations like BAFTA offer an opportunity to celebrate and shine a spotlight on the achievements of the people in the industry.

An accolade doesn’t pay the bills, but recognition from peers and players has value. When the winners take to the stage, it means something.

So it’s sad to see that mobile – a platform that makes up half the market and has billions of players around the world – was given the cold shoulder by BAFTA this week (bar cross-platform titles like Genshin Impact and Terra Nil). And when I say mobile, I mean the people who work in the industry, who were ignored, as if they aren’t part of what makes the games sector great.

To quote BAFTA: “Through its Awards ceremonies and year-round programme of learning events and initiatives … BAFTA identifies and celebrates excellence, discovers, inspires and nurtures new talent, and enables learning and creative collaboration.”

While I doubt anyone working in mobile games is losing sleep over being blanked, hopefully next year will celebrate the excellence of developers that make them.

Week in Views - Mobile gets blanked at the BAFTAs, Apple goes retro and Nintendo | Pocket Gamer.biz

Daniel Griffiths
Editor – PocketGamer.biz
Daniel Griffiths is a veteran journalist who has worked on some of the biggest entertainment media brands in the world. He’s interviewed countless big names, and covered countless new releases in the fields of videogames, music, movies, tech, gadgets, home improvement, self build, interiors and garden design. Yup, he said garden design… He’s the ex-Editor of PSM2, PSM3, GamesMaster and Future Music, ex-Deputy Editor of The Official PlayStation Magazine and ex-Group Editor-in-Chief of Electronic Musician, Guitarist, Guitar World, Rhythm, Computer Music and more. He hates talking about himself.

Apple allows retro games on iOS at last. Here’s what you can and can’t do

Apple is finally moving forwards… Or is that backwards? Dropping their confusing block on retro games and emulators this week, Apple (may) have just opened the door to a host of classic games and removed one more differentiator that gave Android and the Play Store the upper hand.

Retro games are now allowed on iOS.

But don’t all choke on your dentures just yet. There are still plenty of hoops to jump through – namely the legal minefield that many retro games are bogged down with and which the ‘vibrant’ emulator scene neatly bypassed in the interests of successfully delivering the goods.

No, if Apple are going to ‘do’ retro games they’re going to have to be done right.

That means no free-for-all emulators packed with a grab bag of classics (as often seen on the desk- and laptops of those who know where to look) but instead a more curated, Apple-style experience where – if you’ve got the right and can prove it – you can finally unlock your lost classics and put them in front of an iOS audience without Apple party poopers getting in the way.

Sure it means that the bulk of what you’re waiting for may never appear (and while Nintendo’s back catalogue would be legally sound it’s highly doubtful that they’ll hop on board) but we’re looking forward to seeing what happens nonetheless.

After all, left, right, fire… left, right, fire… It’s just hypercasual in worse clothing.

Week in Views - Mobile gets blanked at the BAFTAs, Apple goes retro and Nintendo | Pocket Gamer.biz

Paige Cook
Deputy Editor
Paige is the Deputy Editor on PG.biz who, in the past, has worked in games journalism covering new releases, reviews and news. Coming from a multimedia background, she has dabbled in video editing, photography, graphic and web design! If she’s not writing about the games industry, she can probably be found working through her ever-growing game backlog or buried in a good book.

Microsoft saves the day: Activision Blizzard games are set to return to China in new NetEase deal

Activision Blizzard’s 14-year strong deal with NetEase came crashing down a year ago, resulting in popular games such as World of Warcraft and Overwatch no longer being available in China. This was bad news for everyone. Players missed out, NetEase went from having something in the way of a deal to nothing, and Activision Blizzard lost access to a huge gaming market.

Fast forward to today, and Activision Blizzard’s new knight in shining armour, Microsoft, has stepped in to build a bridge between the two. Whether Microsoft offered up a pretty sum to seal the deal or simply had enough sway to convince NetEase to get back on board, who knows, but it’s a positive for all those involved.

Players in China will regain access to multiple titles and Activision Blizzard gets to benefit from millions of Chinese players. This also marks one of the first big moves to come out of Microsoft buying Activision Blizzard. We all remember the long acquisition process and the question of ‘is this good or bad for games?’ and you’ve got to give it to them; this is one of the good things that may not have happened if Microsoft hadn’t been able to wade in.

Of course, there’s something extra in it for Microsoft, too. Things don’t stop at the rekindled deal between Activision Blizzard and NetEase, it also opens the way for Microsoft to bring NetEase titles to Xbox. I expect we’ll hear more about this in the not-too-distant future.

Week in Views - Mobile gets blanked at the BAFTAs, Apple goes retro and Nintendo | Pocket Gamer.biz

Aaron Astle
News Editor
Aaron is the News Editor at PG.biz and has an honours degree in Creative Writing.
Having spent far too many hours playing Pokémon, he’s now on a quest to be the very best like no one ever was…at putting words in the right order.

End of an era: Nintendo 3DS goes offline, but what does this mean for mobile?

Well, that’s it. No more 3DS or Wii U online. It’s the end of an era, and the final blow to so many games that survived into the Switch era thanks to their strong multiplayer communities. Mario Kart 7 racing, Pokémon Sun and Moon battles and Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate quests will never be the same again – and for those who hadn’t bought their fill of past-gen games, they’ve now missed their chance unless they brave the oft-expensive second-hand market.

Because online functionality going down includes the 3DS and Wii U eShops: the digital marketplaces to buy games direct from Nintendo.

Even as someone who’s largely moved on to the Switch, it’s hard letting go of so many features in so many games – with Pokémon being the biggest hit for me personally. The inability to trade online pratically quashes any notion of going back to complete the Alola PokéDex another day, and the inability to battle with long-distance friends using old favourites in nostalgic titles of the past – X and Y, ORAS, Sun and Moon – it’s really all too much too soon.

But it’s a clear sign from Nintendo that the old age is over and it’s time to move on. If you haven’t bought a Switch already, get with the times, buy a bunch of new games, and start over…