Hello everyone, and welcome to the week! It’s time once again for our look back at the noteworthy updates of the last seven days. The big news this time is probably that big old PUBG Mobile refresh, but there are lots of other games to check out along with it. There are even a few Apple Arcade games in here. I get the feeling some of them are half-heartedly shifting towards being service games, but I guess time will tell on that one. Of course, you can keep an eye out for updates yourself using AppShopper or by participating in the TouchArcade forums. This weekly summary is just here to fill you in on the things you might have missed. Let’s go for it!
Asphalt 8 – Drift Racing Game, Free
It’s apparently been seven years since Asphalt 8 launched, making the big shift towards the series becoming focused on games as a service rather than the usual one-and-done thing. To celebrate the anniversary, there’s a whole new racetrack to enjoy: the bizarre Terra-9. Race the magnetic roads and watch out for floating vehicles! Take part in the new festival for a chance to unlock the Mazzanti Evantra Millecavalli, and feel the speed with 60 FPS mode unlocked on more devices. The game also now supports cross-save and cross-play across platforms and devices.
Apple Arcade’s biggest success shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. The latest update contains more or less what you would expect. There are twenty brand new levels to play in additional caves, giving you more to, well, grind with. There’s also a new second Daily Grind mode that has its own leaderboard. You know, in case one Daily Grind wasn’t enough. Counting my jobs, this makes four Daily Grinds for me! Jealous?
Pratt falls in LEGO Brawls! I’m pretty proud of that. It took me 15 seconds to come up with. There’s a big new addition to LEGO Brawls in this new update: Jurassic World. There’s a new Isla Nublar level, and a new unlockable Brawls champion in the form of Owen Grady. That’s Chris Pratt’s character, in case you’ve forgotten both of the new movies. I don’t blame you if you have. Especially that second one. Of course, there are dinosaurs. The T-Rex and the Indominus Rex make the scene, and there are some cool dino-related power-ups as well. Collect new Jurassic World minifigs as you unlock content in the first ever Brawls season. I like dinosaurs so this wins the coveted UMMSotW award for this week. That’s how it works.
Subway Surfers, Free
The kids are headed to Miami this time around for a special cross-over event with the NFLPA. You can team up with superstars like Tom Brady, provided you’re willing to pay the price. Six different NFLPA Surfers are available either individually or as a 6-in-1 Mega Bundle. Collect football tokens, surf through a stadium, and try to unlock the new football-themed board. Well, at least this one makes a bit more sense than the Walmart cross-over. Seriously, what the heck was that?
SpongeBob: Patty Pursuit,
Running around across Bikini Bottom, that’s what this is all about. There’s a treasure hunt afoot, and SpongeBob and his friends will do their best to hit the jackpot. There are six new levels to play, with some new mechanics and hazards to deal with. You’ll have to tag in some of SpongeBob’s buddies in order to track down treasure map pieces. The goal is apparently to fix the Krusty Krab, which is something SpongeBob does a lot in some form or another. You’ll have more chances to transform in those new levels, so enjoy the weirdness and let it flow through you.
Madden NFL 21 Mobile Football, Free
The NFL is back, and let me tell you at least one group that’s happy about that: the people paying huge money for NFL licensing. Perhaps the biggest of that bunch is EA, who has a football game they need to sell in large quantities every year in order to keep the lights on. The console version seems to have some… issues to work through, so I guess it falls on the mobile version to rise up to the challenge. There are new campaigns and challenges to play, including a new chapter that sees you tailgating outside Lambeau Field in Green Bay. The Field Pass is back with new rewards including the exclusive Grand Master Legend Bo Jackson. He was very famous for playing two sports and co-starring with The Great One and Michael Jordan on the most popular cartoon ever created, Pro Stars. The… the NFL is BACK!
Hungry Shark Evolution, Free
So how is this going these days? I know I missed the yearly Shark Week thing, but there must be something going on. Probably something very scientifically sound. Let’s have a look. Oh, well yeah. The update is called Invasion of the Shark Snatchers. Mysterious forces are mind controlling other players’ sharks and you need to find them using your Shark Invaders Map and take them down. Your reward for doing so? A nice bump to your Kill Record score, which I imagine is quite important in this game because the update notes use FULL CAPS when it talks about your KILL RECORD score. THAT’S not for NOTHING, friends.
Star Trek Fleet Command, Free
It was bound to happen sooner or later: Star Trek Discovery is now a part of Star Trek Fleet Command. The USS Discovery brings its jump technology to the universe, allowing it to cross galaxies in a shorter span of time than it takes for Kirk to fall in love. There are new Discovery missions, officers, avatars, and frames to play around with, too. Like, there’s a ton of new stuff here. It’s pretty awesome. Outside of that, you can now store up to 300 Battle Reports, and some bug fixes and other adjustments have been made. What’s next, Picard and Lower Decks content? I mean, I wouldn’t say no.
SimCity BuildIt, Free
I’m sure most people have thrown any idea of visual consistency out with their SimCity BuildIt cities, so this latest update probably isn’t quite as bad as it seems on its face. Basically, you can now build an old town in your city, adding buildings like Guild Houses, Armories, Towers, and so on. Apparently there’s something called a Vu Pass now, which gives you a new way to earn rewards. You can unlock unique looks for your city in the war map. Wait, when did SimCity get war maps? What the heck are they doing with this game? Madness, I tell you.
PUBG MOBILE – NEW ERA, Free
If I gave the weekly award based on the quality of the update like I usually do instead of being distracted by toy dinosaurs, I probably would have picked this one. Too late for that now, I suppose. Anyway, this is the NEW ERA. Yes, it uses all caps. Very IMPORTANT. Erangel is getting updated, Cheer Park is expanding, there’s a whole new user interface, and the underlying tech has been beefed up to improve the graphics for just about every element. I could try to go into all the details, but there’s frankly quite a bit here and I only have one paragraph to put it in. Hit up those update notes if you want the skinny on it all.
That about wraps it up for last week’s significant updates. I’m sure I’ve missed some, though, so please feel free to comment below and let everyone know if you think something should be mentioned. As usual, major updates will likely get their own news stories throughout this week, and I’ll be back next Monday to summarize and fill in the blanks. Have a great week!