Apple Revives and Refreshes Game Center in iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur

Game Center, a feature for tracking game progress and connecting gamers together for multiplayer gameplay experiences, has long been a part of iOS.

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Game Center achievements in Settings

The feature was added to iOS 4 in 2010 and was a key part of gaming for a few years, but Apple nixed the Game Center app in 2016 with the release of iOS 10. Game Center has stuck around since then, but as more of a behind the scenes feature.

Apple's latest software releases revive Game Center, and there's a redesigned Game Center dashboard available on iOS, tvOS, and macOS that games can take advantage of.

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Splash page when starting an Apple Arcade game after downloading iOS 14

Users are able to view their achievements, leaderboards, and Game Center profiles directly within various games through a new in-game dashboard in ‌Apple Arcade‌ games and through the updated Game Center section in the Settings app.

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Game Center now offers up recurring leaderboards for current game rankings along with leaderboards for daily, weekly, and monthly competitions, plus a feature that lets users see their friends' game progress. Apple will also use Game Center in ‌Apple Arcade‌ to let users see what games are popular with their friends.

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Game Center in an ‌Apple Arcade‌ game

Apple is encouraging developers to set up leaderboards, add achievements, and opt in to the Game Center challenges feature for their apps.

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‌Apple Arcade‌ game in App Store listing available Game Center achievements

‌Apple Arcade‌ is getting other feature updates, such as lists of achievements you can earn in games right on the game page, filters for finding new content, sneak peeks at upcoming games, and a continue playing feature that lets you launch the games you've recently played across your devices from the ‌Apple Arcade‌ tab.

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Top Rated Comments

GubbyMan Avatar
52 months ago
GameCenter needs to get more features so it can compete with real platforms like Steam, PSN or XBL.

For example, let people request to start an iMessage conversation with others on GameCenter. Or make it easy to integrate voice chat into games. Just seeing names online without being able to chat is so boring, might as well play against AI in so many of these Apple Arcade games.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
newyorksole Avatar
52 months ago
The Game Center icon/logo just makes no sense to me Lol. Colorful circles instead of a game controller or something. Looks better though.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
topdownjimmy Avatar
52 months ago

Improvements are always great. But did anybody ask for this?
Me! I've wanted Game Center back for a while, and it makes even more sense now with Apple Arcade. Glad to see they're giving this some attention.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jimbobb24 Avatar
52 months ago
Why should developers trust Apple with this, again?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Bustycat Avatar
52 months ago
Game Center is just a scoreboard to me.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
drcre8tive Avatar
52 months ago
can't wait for that Game Center widget to come out
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)