Learn to develop games while you play them with this PlayStation Plus bundle

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PlayStation Plus
Want to make (and play) games? This educational bundle includes a year of PlayStation Plus.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

It’s incredible when you get to make a career out of something that you love, especially if that passion is an artistic or creative one. If the thing you love is video games, there’s actually a great way to get an exceptional, creative career from playing all day long.

The Unity Game Developer Bundle featuring PlayStation Plus includes 10 different courses that show you how to develop your own games — all while you enjoy a one-year subscription to PlayStation Plus.

Easily build your own games and apps, even with zero experience

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This bundle is all you need to build your own apps and games this year
This bundle is all you need to build your own apps and games this year.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Want to build your own app or game in 2021, even if you’ve never tried before? These top-rated creator kits are the easiest way to do it. And even better, right now The Complete AppGameKit Game Creator Bundle is on sale for just $29.99, an amazing 84% off the regular price.

Stagehand flips the platform game formula on its head

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This ingenious "reverse platformer" is one heck of a game.
Photo: Stagehand

To achieve maximum success, iOS game developers need an idea that’s both reassuringly familiar and strikingly new. That’s exactly what Stagehand delivers: The new platform game employs a clever twist on the popular endless-runner genre, with a sprinkle of ’90s classic Lemmings thrown in for good measure.

Stagehand is a game that looks like a side-scrolling platformer, but instead of controlling the character, you move the stage,” developer Matt Comi told Cult of Mac. “We call it a ‘reverse platformer.’ The protagonist, Frank, runs and jumps all by himself. It’s the player’s job to make sure he doesn’t run into walls.”

Pay what you want to go from game lover to game maker [Deals]

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These name-your-own price educational bundles will turn you into a game dev.
Image: Stone River eLearning

Sure, playing games is a blast, but making games is where the real fun (and, let’s face it, money) is at. Turn this popular pastime into a passion and a profession, or just a creative outlet, with this bundle of lessons from Stone River eLearning.

Whether you’re a skilled coder or a total n00b, with dozens of courses covering the game-design gamut you’ll be able to get into the game in no time, and all for whatever price you’re comfortable paying.

Why this developer is giving up on pixel art in his games

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Pixel art can be beautiful, but ultimately self-defeating for game devs.
Pixel art can be beautiful, but ultimately self-defeating for game devs.
Photo: Dinofarm Games

Blake Reynolds, lead artist at Dinofarm Games (Auro, 100 Rogues), has come to the conclusion that “pixel art” is over. He’s decided to hang up his digital pencil tool and create art for games that current audiences can understand.

Auro,” he writes, “is likely to be the last Dinofarm Games title to feature pixel art.”

Get Wii-style bowling with an iPhone and Apple TV

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Now all you need is a wrist strap. Photo: Anuj Tandon
Now all you need is a wrist strap for your iPhone. Photo: Anuj Tandon/Rolocule Games

To get the fun of virtual bowling without a Wii, look no further than Bowling Central, a magical iOS app that lets you swing your iPhone around to send a virtual bowling ball slamming into all the pins at the end of the lane.

The game is powered by Rolocule Games’ motion-tracking technology, called “rolomotion,” which lets you swing your iPhone like a Wii remote. The gaming company’s two founders wanted to create a Wii Bowl-style experience, only with an Apple TV and an iPhone, and they won a 2014 Edison Award for their solution.

“We worked really hard to get the motion gaming controls right,” Rolocule’s Anuj Tandon told Cult of Mac in an email, “and getting the perfect controls took time. Not only … can you give accurate direction to the ball, but by twisting the wrist, the ball can be given a spin, just like real bowling.”

You’ll love playing The Impossible Room but you will never beat it

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The Impossible Room is so hard, no one has beaten it yet. Photo: Maruf Nebil
The Impossible Room is so hard, no one has beaten it yet. Photo: Maruf Nebil

Though he’s toyed with escape games for years, Turkish developer Maruf Nebil didn’t get hooked on the genre until 100 Floors hit the App Store in 2012. When The Room Two upped the ante with gorgeous 3-D environments a year later, Nebil set himself a devilish task: To create an unbeatable game that was also undeniably beautiful.

“I decided to make my game the hardest of all of them,” the 25-year-old developer said, with perhaps an evil laugh. “It’s like all 100 floors in a single room.”

While some games in this genre are about as fun and fulfilling as one of those “spot the hidden object” puzzles from a Highlights magazine, others prove truly challenging.

Some might say this type of game is purely for masochists, but others get lost in the obtuse challenge of finding hidden objects and solving maddening puzzles, all while trapped within a virtual room.

How Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff keeps the laughs coming

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Exclusive behind-the-scenes sketches show Quahog destroyed by Peter's fowl archnemesis. Photo: TinyCo/Fox

Hit TV show Family Guy followed a trajectory that’s very similar to Apple’s. The show appeared as a breath of fresh air early on, underwent a decline during which it almost vanished, then made a triumphant return.

In that way, Family Guy always seemed a perfect fit for iOS. Earlier this year, that pairing finally happened when developer TinyCo debuted Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff, a mobile game that follows Peter Griffin and the rest of the Fox TV show’s colorful supporting cast as they rebuild the town of Quahog after it’s been destroyed.

Six months down the line — and with the game currently in the middle of a haunting, courtesy of its Halloween update — Cult of Mac spoke with the developers about Seth McFarlane, making games funny, and the perils of in-app purchases.