Modojo Rewind: The Mobile Revival

This week's Modojo Rewind checks out a few established game series making the jump to mobile, plus a crucial PSA for Nintendo Switch owners.

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The wheels of time are ever turning, sending the world rumbling forward into uncharted waters. We can't pretend to know where the waves may lead us; fortunately, the power of hindsight does allow us draw our own conclusions about things yet to come. Following up on layoffs and closures in last week's Modojo Rewind, this week saw the mobile landscape change shape once again. For some, it means bringing old titles back to new life; for others, it means taking a top-tier release and adapting it to mobile hardware. Either way, old strategies seem to be falling away in favor of making the most out of a rapidly changing market.

Regarding Mobile Revivals

There's one big trend in the mobile games development scene right now: studios seem very keen on bringing unexpected games to the mobile market, oftentimes ones that players believe shouldn't be running on mobile hardware. Some developers have been working on translating big-name games to the mobile medium — for instance, Epic Games is bringing Fortnight to iOS devices, and the once-popular open world title ARK: Survival Evolved will be coming to both iOS and Android devices later this year.

This trend continues even in the mobile gaming news we've seen aside from new releases. Halfbrick, the development team behind hit mobile titles Fruit Ninja and Jetpack Joyride, recently laid off half of its staff. The crew that were cut were among the last responsible for original game development; consequently, the ones that remain are reportedly working solely on new projects based around the two aforementioned franchises, allegedly since they've been the only profitable ventures so far.

Gamers whose electronic entertainment experience  dates back decades may be surprised to hear about a resurgence of the old Heroes of Might and Magic brand. Ubisoft has put out a few series entries after rebranding to the pared-down Might and Magic monicker, and the latest release will see the series return in Might and Magic: Elemental Guardians for mobile devices. The game is set to release soon, and Android players can get a jump on the action by pre-registering to get notified of its launch.

Though some players may not be old enough to remember, popular toy retailer Toys 'R' Us used to be a sort of haven for game players and collectors. Unfortunately, the company hasn't been doing too well business-wise, and this week Toys 'R' Us began preparing liquidation plans that will likely close between 600 and 800 U.S. stores. It's sad news, especially considering how many gamers have fond memories of the place, but we're not surprised to hear of difficulties competing against giants like Target or Amazon.

The last item of business is a public service announcement: Nintendo recently released the new Nintendo Switch firmware version 5.0.0, and it includes several new tweaks and some special options for parents. However, some users are reporting that their third-party docks have been bricking Nintendo Switch systems after updating to the latest firmware. The details are both slim and varied, but users who don't want to risk losing their game data are advised to switch back to the official Nintendo Switch dock with haste.

Guides Editor

Kevin Tucker is a core component of Shacknews' powerful guide development team. For questions, concerns, tips, or to share constructive criticism, he can be reached on Twitter @dukeofgnar or through e-mail at kevin.tucker@shacknews.com.

From The Chatty