Apple TV may have crippled its gaming potential by requiring developers to support the included remote

When Apple first annouced their new Apple TV last week, their app programing guide stated that it was okay for developers to “require an extended game controller.” Apple has now changed their policy to state that games developed for the new platform “must support the Apple TV remote.” This has the potential to cripple the Apple TV’s game library and limit the device to casual games with a simple control scheme.

The Fire TV, which does allow games to require a game controller, has the best game library of any streaming device on the market. Around 30% of the Fire TV’s game library currently requires a game controller. Some of the best games on the Fire TV are among the list of games that require a game controller. This decision by Apple may have cemented the Fire TV’s position as the top streamer for serious gamers and game developers.

ViaThe Verge


  1. After watching the live game demo, it looks like you have to swipe the direction you want to move. This swiping motion wouldn’t work as well as dedicated buttons as found on third-party controllers. Gamers thinking about purchasing the Apple TV will be disappointed. They should look toward the New AFTV instead!

  2. Bill says:

    There will still be a big butt-load purchased because the name has an (A), (2Ps), an (L) and an (E). Fortunately, I will not be part of the butt-load.

    • Keith says:

      …and I think preorders on the new phone will break records. Trust me though, if they keep releasing products that are already behind the times in terms of features, their sales will begin to drop again. Only this time Steve Jobs wont be coming back to push innovation.
      I dont say this as an apple hater. I love some of the stuff theyve made but its been awhile since Ive wanted anything theyre selling. Partly its because I think the price is a little high, but with apple tv its just that if I bought one I feel like Id be running it along side fire tv, and not even a gen 2, I mean as a complete device aftv gen 1 might beat apple tv gen 4!

      • Jason says:

        How is the new iPhone behind the times? Apple beats android hands down in software to hardware as they make both. It’s not fragmented like android you don’t have 50 dozen devices out there to support.
        Android only is great for boxes for phones and tablets don’t get the desire.

        Apple has the new 3D Touch and even before iPhone always seems to just run smoother and have better overall support then android. If you buy an android and it don’t work where do you go?

        The fire tv is awesome but the Apple TV has some features that are pretty neat too. I love the way my iMac and my iPhone and iPad all play together I can start something on one finish it on another and I can answer text messages on all my devices.
        Android has some ideas too but as a business owner I’d much rather be Apple then any android maker. They have very loyal customers and make tons of money. What business wouldn’t want those 2 things.

  3. InputBrain says:

    Wouldn’t any serious gamer already have a Playstation 3/4 or Nvidia Shield TV to game on and stream?

  4. jason says:

    Im with inputBrain why would i buy an apple tv or a fire tv if i wanted to really game? I mean the fire has some games but still a wiiU or a PS4 or 3 or even the new Shield or something is better as its a dedicated console.
    Whos to say that what Apple means is that it must support the controller to at least get into the game then for game play you have to switch i don’t know.

    Im not interested in the ATV4 simply because while i love Apple products i can’t run KODI on it. We will see but i know for allot of people it will be great i love the deep in voice search and the voice search to rewind fast forward.
    And i noticed during the demo that unlike the fire tv all searches include netflix, iTunes and hulu, Showtime all from get go and who knows what else down the road.
    Be nice if amazon prime made it to the ATV4 and that was included in the voice search too.

  5. shwru980r says:

    I think the developer will just have to code for the remote in addition to the game controller. I don’t see this as a deal breaker.

  6. Yea it’s really not that hard to code for a remote lol anyone who is serious about making a game for this will spend five minutes doing rudimentary commands on their remote and people will know by the level of complexity of the game that they need a controller. That remote is sleek though I gotta hand it to apple.

  7. Justin says:

    The one saving grace is that if controller support is added it is required to work for the whole game.

    I’d suspect many devs would just quickly throw together remote compatible controls and focus on controller support. Of course that could cause many people without controllers to complain.

    I’d guess this is to avoid someone buying a game just to find they can’t play without additional hardware. But people would then think they should be getting the full experience with just the remote though that is likely impossible.

    To me the remote looks awful for everything and seems like it would require more effort and precision to use than I’m willing to put into a tv interface.

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