One ‘Account’ to rule them all: Nintendo updates membership club

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Nintendo Account doesn't have much of a ring to it, but this is big news.
Nintendo Account doesn't have much of a ring to it, but this is big news.
Photo: Takashi Mochizuki/Twitter

At a strategic briefing for investors today in Tokyo, Nintendo CEO Tatsumi Kimishima took to the podium to talk about the game-maker’s plans for the near future, including, we hope, information on the venerable company’s foray into mobile gaming on iPhones, iPads, and possibly Android devices.

The new service — blandly called “Nintendo Account” — will connect console, PC, and smart device users in a way that has never been seen before in Nintendo’s history.

Skip the grind: 3 fun mobile games that (almost) play themselves

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Look, ma, no hands!
Look, ma, no hands!
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

I just leveled up while I was driving to pick my kid up from school. I set up a digital battle using my iPhone while sitting in my driveway, hit “Go,” and then just put my iPhone down on my dashboard while I drove to get him.

I’ve been calling these types of games “auto-battlers” for their central feature: letting you skip tedious, grinding gameplay that tends to be a feature of traditional role-playing games. I don’t have time to micromanage my iPhone; chances are neither do most people, which explains the rise of casual gaming over the past five years or so.

Here are three fun mobile games that let you experience more depth than a typical Flappy Bird clone, but still don’t require too much input to enjoy.

Beware this ‘fix’ for nasty iOS 9 Game Center bug

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Game Center is causing some problems for iOS 9 updaters.
Game Center is causing some problems for iOS 9 updaters.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

If you’ve been having trouble with Apple’s Game Center after upgrading to iOS 9, you’re not alone.

Read Apple’s discussion forums and you’ll find 14 pages of comments from disgruntled gamers complaining about — and trying to solve — this rather massive issue.

ROBLOX games hit the big screen with an app for Xbox

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From the ROBLOX game Angels 15, which will be among 20 games coming to Xbox.
From the ROBLOX game Angels 15, which will be among 20 games coming to Xbox.
Photo: ROBLOX

ROBLOX, the popular user-generated online gaming platform, introduces kids to game building and even helps them earn a few bucks in the process. Some ROBLOX game developers have earned enough money to pay for college.

Now some of the more successful developers will raise their gaming cred even higher as ROBLOX launches a free app for Xbox featuring 20 of its top games.

Get lost in Lifeline 2’s fantasy world on Apple Watch

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Help Arika avoid mortal danger while she wisecracks at you.
Help Arika avoid mortal danger while she wisecracks at you.
Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Dave Justus is no stranger to writing video games, having written both Telltale’s The Wolf Among Us adventure game for Mac, PC and console, as well as the original Lifeline, a text-based story game that brought the epic struggles of an astronaut named Taylor to our wrists.

With the help of 3 Minute Games’ lead game designer Mars Jokela, Justus has created another massive adventure that still fits inside your Apple Watch. This time, however, you’ll have a conversation with Arika, a young woman with magical powers who needs your help to escape mortal danger.

Lifeline 2: Bloodline is a funny, moving, and above all human story that really plays to the strengths of the Apple Watch; it’s like having a text conversation (with a cheeky magician) from your wrist.

“We’ve built Lifeline 2 to be a bigger and richer experience,” says Jokela via email, “[but] the story is still focused on a likable, relatable character who desperately needs your help.”