A long-rumored change to the Apple Store briefly came to fruition today when a plethora of 32-bit mobile games disappeared from the market and could only be found by using a direct link. They’re back now, but this temporary purge will eventually lead to support ending for all 32-bit games when iOS 11 drops this fall. When that support goes, so will your games, unless they’re updated.
Thankfully, many developers are working towards having their titles updated to the 64-bit infrastructure demanded by iOS11’s hardware, but some games will be left to die if their backend is unable to be moved to 64-bit. Many users have already seen various warnings that their apps won’t work in future versions of iOS, so start preparing for a life without iOS 11 on an old phone or tablet if you want to hold onto old games that can’t be updated, which many can’t. Especially if it’s not monetarily feasible.
Kotaku spoke about this issue with 5 Games founder Brandon Pollet, developer of Incrediblox and Pocket Heroes, who told them “most” of his games would be removed from the Apple Store when the plug is pulled. “We currently have 5 games that will be removed from the store when Apple kills 32 bit.“ He said can upgrade maybe two of his games due to the changed tech behind the older games.
For now, before the app-ocalypse, Apple has made it easy for users to see what games are outdated. Go to Settings>General>About>Applications (h/t Gizmodo) and if your list is blank, you’re in the clear.
If you’re stuck on old tech and have an upgrade on the way, consider your old device a classic games machine and don’t update to iOS11. Here’s a list of oldies but goodies.
It’s also important to mention that now is not the time to panic — since developers knew this update was coming, games are being shifted to 64-bit constantly. Some games, like Osmos and World of Goo, were recently updated to 64-bit and there’s a chance your favorite, older game will be updated as well, but the clock is ticking. Ridiculous Fishing needs an update as soon as humanly possible.