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Right now, Unity is the world’s No.1 engine when it comes to mobile games. According to a 2012 Game Developer survey, Unity is far and away the most popular engine amongst mobile game developers, and they use it to make huge numbers of critically-acclaimed, innovative, mega-grossing games. In fact, no less than seventeen Unity-made games and apps featured in Apple’s AppStore USA Best of 2012 list.

The seventeen Unity games were recognized across 10 categories including:

iPad Game of the Year: The Room by Fireproof Games

Top Grossing iPhone App of the Year: Kingdoms of Camelot: Battle for the North by Kabam

Best Casual Games:  Mini Motor Racing by The Binary Mill (iPhone and iPad) and Bad Piggies by Rovio (iPhone)

Best New Ways to Play: Slingshot Racing by Snowbolt Interactive (iPhone), Total War Battles by The Creative Assembly (iPhone), Splice: Tree of Life by Cipher Prime (iPad), Tentacles: Enter the Dolphin by Press Play (iPad) and Beat Sneak Bandit by Simogo (iPad).

Best Showpiece Games: ORC: Vengeance by Big Cave Games (iPhone), Dead Trigger by Madfinger Games (iPhone and iPad) and Air Mail by N-Fusion Interactive (iPhone)

See the full list of Unity games featured on the AppStore USA Best of 2012 list here.

Innovate at speed

Independent studios like Best New Ways to Play winner Cipher Prime are using Unity to push the boundaries of touchscreen content and create trailblazing games fast. Game play in Splice: Tree of Life revolves around reprogramming the DNA of an ever-shifting pool of organisms that tilts with the player’s iPad, contributing to the immersive feel of this stylish like-no-other puzzler.

Cipher Prime built Splice: Tree of Life in an astonishing six weeks. “Since switching to Unity, our production time has pretty much halved on each new project, and Splice has been our fastest build yet,” says Creative Director Will Stallwood. Read more about Cipher Prime’s experiences in creating their latest hit here.

Small is beautiful…and successful

Like many of the games featured on the Best of List, The Room, a gorgeous 3D puzzler, was made by a small team of highly talented developers. Remarkably it was also Fireproof Games’ first production and cost just $90,000.

“We wanted to make something that was among the best-looking games on the platform, but didn’t have the resources to build characters or large environments,” says Mark Hamilton, the game’s artist and designer.

“With that in mind, I came up with the idea of a Chinese puzzle box. Interacting with the panels, sliding them around… seemed like a good fit for the touch interface, and focusing on one object built of various woods would allow us to show off our art expertise.”

And, at Big Cave games, cofounder Ryan Rutherford says, “with a small team, everyone can adjust quickly and still be on the same page with one another. This was crucial in the development (of Best Showpiece Game Winner ORC: Vengeance), and is what led to us making a high-quality product. Two guys and a game engine like Unity can still create a good game that’s available to millions of people on the App Store.”

How can we help you get your talent out there?

We’re really proud that so many people are choosing Unity to build great mobile games. But to readers new to both Unity and game development, the task of mapping out a plan for building, publishing and promoting an awesome mobile game might seem daunting. Where do you start? If you’re a mobile developer with a suggestion for content that you would find helpful, leave us a comment to let us know.

17 replies on “Unity games sweep App Store awards”

[…] all quite successful titles (and fun in their own right) – it hasn’t quite matched the larger adoption of Unity 3D. Our tech decision to use AIR has been a bit controversial – both because of this slow […]

Congratulations, Unity, on such a great list of games! I’ve played ORC myself and it’s performing really great on my iPhone with all the graphics and FXs! The combat is smooth as well. I’ll be waiting to see even more wonderful Unity based games!

Even though Unity briniging so much info to its fans with so much useful knowledge this effort is really appreciateable.
Nice post keep posting.

Something I would greatly love to see fpr iOS is a native higher level implimentation of the various touch events. I.e. an Input.OnTap or Input.OnDoubleTap would be nice but what would be VERY nice indeed is Input.OnSwipe with a dedicated counting down timer to facilitate sliding your content from fast (directly after sliding) to slowing down eventually…

I would GREATLY appreciate being able to use the Touch interface without having to worry about such ow lever stuff as “Is this click in the start phase or can I count it as a click, yet?”

It would be nice can learn about converting standalone apps to mobile apps in Unity. How to use best visual experience and acceptable performance.


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I know this is showcasing mobile games, but I thought it was worthwhile to point out that Splice also took home Game of the Year Runner-up for the Mac App Store. Not too shabby considering Game of the Year was Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

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