Untitled Goose Game twice rejected by Apple’s Mac App Store

Apple has been making some effort lately to show that the company cares about games, especially when it comes to the Mac. However, the company’s practice shows that many things still need to change if it really wants to turn the Mac into a gaming platform. Panic co-founder Cabel Sasser revealed Monday that the popular “Untitled Goose Game” has been rejected twice by Apple’s Mac App Store.

Apple says no to Untitled Goose Game on the Mac App Store

Untitled Goose Game is a cross-platform game released in 2019 and quickly gained quite popularity as it consists of the player controlling a goose to manipulate objects and complete a list of challenges. The game was critically acclaimed and won multiple awards, including DICE Game of the Year.

For those unfamiliar, Untitled Goose Game is distributed by Panic – which is known for making many great macOS apps like Transmit and Prompt. For this reason, the developers thought it was reasonable to make the game available on the Mac App Store for macOS users. But things didn’t turn out the way they expected.

As Sasser said in a post on Mastodon (via Bold fireball), Apple has rejected the macOS version of Untitled Goose Game twice. First, the game was rejected because the reviewer thought the player couldn’t skip the credits. “We explained that you can skip the credits by holding space,” said the developer.

The macOS game has been submitted for review for the second time. But again, Apple rejected the game, claiming “something else”. Sasser said that at that point the developers “just gave up and never bothered to resubmit.” The game was released for Mac users through Steam and Epic Games Store.

A history of game developer neglect

Stories of Apple’s negligence towards game developers are nothing new. A former game editor in the App Store revealed this in an article for The protector that the App Store Review team “couldn’t handle the number of games coming in”.

According to the former employee, developers are “treated with contempt” and most of them have a “horror story where their game is repeatedly rejected for arbitrary reasons”. The report also notes that Apple is doing very little to encourage developers to bring great games to the App Store.

Unsurprisingly, Apple is under investigation by many regulators around the world for anti-competitive and arbitrary practices related to the App Store.

Gaming on the Mac.

I’ve already written here about how Apple needs to change its mindset if it really wants to compete in the gaming segment. The App Store’s strict guidelines mean developers of popular games aren’t interested in bringing them to Apple’s platforms. A clear example of this is when Apple required every tvOS game to be compatible with Siri Remote, which is impractical for some games.

A few weeks ago, Apple held a small event to promote games on its devices. However, this is not enough to show that it really cares about games. And it’s a shame to see great devices like iPhones, iPads, Macs, and even Apple TVs not having good games because of Apple’s arbitrary decisions.

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