Why can’t iTunes play the games it sells? - Macenstein

Why can’t iTunes play the games it sells?

Posted by Dr. Macenstein

Above: The controller schemes in Sudoku (left) and Tetris (right) aren’t exactly PS3-complicated.

Yesterday I purchased my first 2 games for my iPod via the iTunes store, Sudoku, and Tetris. (They’re both great, incidentally. I recommend them highly.) However, upon clicking on the downloaded games in my iTunes library, it suddenly occurred to me that the iPod games sold via the iTunes store are the only media type that iTunes sells that it cannot play.

This seems like a very basic and fundamental flaw in the whole game buying experience. The games Apple sells are unique in that they are the only iTunes media type that requires that the user own an iPod to enjoy. All the songs, movies, TV shows, and audio books sold at the iTunes store play fine in iTunes. iTunes can even display PDFs and QuickTimes. Yet for some reason, iTunes cannot play the iPod games it sells.

Obviously, since the iPod is not a true gaming device, the games currently available for it are all very simple. Most rely on some form of an “Up”, “Down”, “Left”, “Right” and “Select” game pad structure that could easily be coded to a keyboard’s arrow and space bar keys. Yet for some reason, Apple has chosen not to add this functionality to iTunes.

I am firmly under the delusion that all the top execs at Apple from Steve Jobs on down start their mornings by checking out our site, so I will use this opportunity to make a request for iTunes 8. Steve, please ask the boys down in the iTunes lab to add gameplay functionality to iTunes. I think you will find it will probably cost you about $4 to add an iPod emulator to the program, and you will find many people (who don’t even own 5th gen iPods) will buy the games to play on their PCs. After all, now that “The Man” has put the kibosh on Quinn, where else are we Mac users going to find a good Tetris?


3 Responses to “Why can’t iTunes play the games it sells?”
  1. Joe says:

    Yeah, that would be cool, I guess it would need an emulator. I was at GDC last month and I saw this company on the OpenKODE stand with some software called “game player” which let the same games run on Mac and Windows and also on phones and other devices like sat-navs etc. They had this idea that games should be like any other media type like music/movies, and play on anything with a player. I wonder if you can get that on iPod?

  2. TT says:

    Isn’t it obvious. This is exactly the reason Apple only allow these games to be played on a iPod. They could easily implant a iPod simulator, but they want people to buy their iPods.

  3. Sydenham says:

    Yeah I find this very disappointing. I was very excited to see the games in the app. store and was about to buy until I checked with apple support. Is there any software to make these games work?

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