Back in 2013, Rolocule debuted Motion Tennis, an iPhone game that brought Wii-style gaming to the Apple TV via AirPlay. Using AirPlay Mirroring, users could display the game on an Apple TV while using an iPhone as a tennis racket. The setup drew natural comparisons to Nintendo's Wii Sports, with the iPhone playing the role of the Wii Remote.

Motion Tennis wasn't perfect, as it did suffer from minor lag and there were naturally concerns about users accidentally throwing their iPhones across the room or into their televisions, but it did serve as an interesting glimpse of both the potential of AirPlay and the possibilities for Apple TV gaming.

Rolocule is now back with an addition to its sports-themed Apple TV games, earlier this month debuting Bowling Central. The game itself is fairly simple, allowing users to bowl a classic game of 3, 6, or 10 frames, or take on a challenge mode that currently offers 30 stages with various stationary and/or moving blockers in the way of the pins.

Bowling Central is by no means the first bowling game for iOS, nor even necessarily the best or most realistic, but once again the selling point is Apple TV compatibility via AirPlay. When in AirPlay mode, the user can wave his or her iPhone side to side to set the release point and then swing the device to bowl the ball, even imparting spin depending on the trajectory of the swing.


In our testing, we found very little lag when playing via Apple TV, an important factor considering the need to accurately time throws in challenge mode. Throws also felt natural with the iPhone after a bit of practice that involved getting used to keeping a thumb on the screen during the throw rather than releasing as on Wii Sports. Rolocule co-founder Anuj Tandon notes the controls were specifically designed to keep the thumb in place during throws in order to maintain better control of the device and minimize the chances of accidentally throwing it.

We did experience some crashing problems when AirPlaying to a second-generation Apple TV, although these appear to be due more to AirPlay issues on the older set-top box than an app problem. No such issues were seen with a third-generation Apple TV.

Overall, Bowling Central is a fairly straightforward bowling game with limited gameplay options so far. For example, there is no live multiplayer option and the 30 challenge levels can be completed rather quickly, although it can take a bit longer to achieve "three-pin" ratings on each.

More challenge levels appear to be in the works, however, and the Apple TV compatibility is what makes Bowling Central an interesting concept as party entertainment. With Apple yet to allow games or any sort of App Store for the Apple TV, Rolocule's AirPlay implementation gives a nice impression of the potential for the set-top box should Apple ultimately decide to open it up to third-party developers.

Bowling Central is available now in the App Store for $2.99. [Direct Link]

Top Rated Comments

ssspinball Avatar
122 months ago
I'm remembering why the Wii came out with wrist straps... :eek:

Not too keen on sending my $700+ device flying across the room accidentally.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
2010mini Avatar
122 months ago
I'm remembering why the Wii came out with wrist straps... :eek:

Not too keen on sending my $700+ device flying across the room accidentally.

Your fears have already been solved.
http://photojojo.com/m/store/awesomeness/iphone-wrist-strap
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
0098386 Avatar
122 months ago
As polished up as this is, I had my fill of motion controlled sports games a while ago now.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

airpods pro 2 pink

Apple Releases New AirPods Pro 2 Firmware

Tuesday May 28, 2024 11:46 am PDT by
Apple today released new firmware update for both the Lightning and USB-C versions of the AirPods Pro 2. The new firmware is version 6F7, up from the 6B34 firmware released in November. Apple does not provide details on what features might be included in the refreshed firmware beyond "bug fixes and other improvements," so it is unclear what's new in the update. Apple does not give...
maxresdefault

Report: These 10 New AI Features Are Coming in iOS 18

Sunday May 26, 2024 12:57 pm PDT by
iOS 18 and macOS 15 will offer an array of new AI features such as auto-generated emojis, suggested replies to emails and messages, and more, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reports. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. A significant portion of Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is expected to focus on AI features. Writing his latest "Power On" newsletter, Gurman...
wwdc 2024 main image feature

Apple Confirms Time for June 10 WWDC Keynote, Shares Full Schedule

Tuesday May 28, 2024 10:21 am PDT by
Apple today shared details on the schedule that it has prepared for the 2024 Worldwide Developers Conference, which is set to take place from June 10 to June 14. While WWDC always includes a keynote, Apple has confirmed that it will be held on June 10 at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time. Apple is expected to announce iOS 18, iPadOS 18, macOS 15, tvOS 18, watchOS 11, and visionOS 2, and at this time,...
Apple iPhone 15 Pro lineup Action button 230912

Apple Green-Lights iPhone 16 Pro Display Production

Tuesday May 28, 2024 5:13 am PDT by
Samsung Display and LG Display have been granted approval for mass production of OLED screens for Apple's upcoming iPhone 16 Pro models, Korea's The Elec reports. Both suppliers apparently received approval earlier this month, paving the way for the commencement of mass production of screens for the iPhone 16 Pro models. While Samsung Display will supply OLED screens for all four iPhone 16...
iPad Pro Landscape Apple Logo Feature

Apple Says Future iPads Could Feature Landscape Apple Logo

Monday May 27, 2024 6:31 am PDT by
French website Numerama interviewed three senior Apple employees about the new iPad Pro models that launched earlier this month. While the discussion did not reveal many new details, it did mention one potential change for future iPads. While the Apple logo on the back of iPads is positioned so that it appears upright in vertical orientation, the devices are often used in landscape...