iOS gaming recap — COD: Warzone Mobile, two new Assassin’s Creed games, and Marvel meets Pokémon Go
This week in mobile games we learned that Call of Duty: Warzone Mobile is coming next year, Ubisoft is making two new Assassin’s Creed games and that the Marvel universe is the next big brand to get the Pokémon Go treatment. There’s also new games to play that’ll scratch a retro itch.
Let’s get into it shall we?
Warzone is ready to drop
Call of Duty: Warzone Mobile is coming in 2023, and with it comes some interesting new cross-progression mechanics. It’s shaping up to join the best iPhone games out there.
Warzone Mobile will allow players to carry loadouts, weapons, operators, and XP across to PC and console games Warzone 2.0 and Modern Warfare II and back again. It means, in short, that you could unlock a new item in one game and use it in another, carrying your COD progression with you wherever you go.
Other interesting tidbits announced about the game state that it’ll feature full 120-person battle royale gameplay just like the PC and console games, and will feature the popular Verdansk map at launch, with Warzone 2.0 map Al Mazrah arriving in the future. Android owners can pre-register their interest in the game now; App Store players will have to wait a little longer to pre-order. Activision has told fans to “stay tuned.” Consider us tuned, then?
Assassin’s Creed goes mobile (twice)
Among the many Assassin’s Creed games revealed by Ubisoft last week, two were bespoke mobile games coming to iOS.
The first is codenamed Jade, and is a full-scale open-world game set in ancient China. It is widely expected that Ubisoft has enlisted the help of Tencent to make the title, which has deep expertise in taking ‘western’ brands mobile (League of Legends, Call of Duty and Apex Legends to name a few). But weirdly, when asked, Ubisoft wouldn’t confirm who is co-developing the game, which is odd. Our bet here is that it’ll follow the same shape and structure of Genshin Impact, another very successful open-world game on mobile.
The other new Assassin’s Creed game coming to mobile is a little more mysterious. It’ll be coming to Netflix as part of a three-game deal Ubisoft just announced with the streaming giant, and in all likelihood will tie into the Assassin’s Creed series being made for Netflix games too. Again, when quizzed, Ubisoft couldn’t say much, but did say that “It’s going to be different to our open world games and is going to be something that’s fun and takes us back to our roots.” Hmmm.
Marvel meets Pokémon Go
Niantic, maker of Pokémon Go and several other much less successful location-based games, is now going to give the Marvel universe a whirl as it tries to replicate the popularity of its original gotta-catch-’em-all hit.
It’s called Marvel World of Heroes and it looks like it’ll transfuse the likes of Thor, Ms. Marvel, and Black Panther into the Pokémon Go template. We’re a little cautious on this one because Niantic’s got an uneven record with this stuff. It tried much the same with Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, which didn’t last long, and its Transformers and Catan games didn’t make it beyond a few smaller test markets. (Pikmin Bloom, by the way, is doing fine, but hasn’t exactly set the world aflame.)
Lead game designer Neil Melville said of the game, “We aren’t content with augmenting reality with a single version of the Marvel Universe, and will let you travel to multiple alternate realities in the Marvel Multiverse to engage with different characters and stories in the same location.”
So it sounds like it’ll lean into some pretty deep lore – one to watch for Marvel superfans if Niantic can pull it off.
What to play this week
Apple Arcade has been on a good run lately with the release of Amazing Bomberman and Horizon Chase 2, which both have retro appeal for players of a certain vintage.
Amazing Bomberman leans into its old-school roots with a retro-future aesthetic and frenetic soundtrack, as well as offering online play and several other modes to tinker with.
Horizon Chase 2’s blazing blue skies, sporty supercars, and arcadey racing mean it’s effectively a modern-day OutRun, so grab it now if you want superfast thrills without a brake pedal in sight.
And if those haven’t satisfied your hunger for retro action, there’s ScourgeBringer, a speedy combat-based platformer that has been aptly described by some as Dead Cells meets Celeste.
Until next week!
– Neil Alexander Long