Now that we're past Not-E3 season, you'd think game announcements would start to slow down. On the contrary, they seem to be just gearing up. July started off with Ubisoft revealing The Division Resurgence, coming to Android and iOS, which takes the series' well-known tactical RPG gameplay and recreates New York City for the small screen. Other games that are already out, like Pokémon Unite and Apex Legends Mobile, saw big updates as well.
If you think you may have missed any notable news in the Android gaming world over the last month, we've rounded up what you'll want to know.
The Division Resurgence heads to mobile
Ubisoft isn't done bringing its flagship franchises to mobile. Hot off the heels of its Rainbow Six Mobile announcement, the company revealed that another Tom Clancy property would be getting the mobile treatment as well. Enter The Division Resurgence.
Starting just before the first game takes place and set primarily between the two core games, Resurgence aims to give players a new perspective on the events that occurred in the world. It's set to have a new canon storyline with PvE activities that can be played either solo or in co-op with friends.
I spoke with The Division Resurgence executive producer Fabrice Navrez about adapting The Division experience to mobile devices, and he told me that its tactical RPG elements actually make for a good, slower gameplay experience, which feels better suited for mobile. Along with touch controls, Resurgence will support other great mobile controllers with fully customizable controls.
There's no word yet on when the game is set to launch, but we'll continue to cover it, so be on the lookout at Android Central for more.
A new legend joins the fray in Apex Legends Mobile
After releasing in May, Apex Legends Mobile has had a fairly uneventful first season, but that seems to be changing with Season 2: Distortion. In addition to bringing back King's Canyon (which was playable during my review period but not available for everyone at launch), Respawn has added Pythas Block 0, a mobile-first Team Deathmatch map. Season 2: Distortion also brings two new game modes to the table: Gun Game and Hack.
What may be the most exciting addition to the game, however, is Rhapsody, a new mobile-exclusive legend described as a DJ from Komma who competes with a little companion robot named Rowdy. Her Tactical, Hype Anthem, will give teammates a speed boost and recharge their shields. Her Ultimate, Rowdy's Rave, will allow her companion to block all sights and scans, making her effective against characters like Bloodhound.
I had a lot of fun with Apex Legends Mobile when I reviewed it, but I've since fallen off. This might give me the boost to get back into it.
Genshin Impact gets its first melee catalyst user
Genshin Impact usually gets updates every six weeks, but Update 2.8 was a little special in that it introduced players to the game's first melee catalyst user, Shikanoin Heizou. Catalyst users previously have been long-range attackers, much like characters who use bows. Heizou, instead, gets up close and personal, dealing significant Anemo damage to enemies, especially those already affected by Pyro, Hydro, Electro, or Cryo elements.
Despite being a four-star character, Heizou has earned his spot on our Genshin Impact character tier list in the S-rank position, alongside five-star characters like Zhongli, Ayaka, Venti, and several others.
I already pulled Heizou on Kaedehara Kazuha's event wish banner and tested him out in the trial run. He's a powerful character, but he doesn't fit in with my current squad right now. My DPS and sub-DPS roles are filled by Ayaka and Venti, respectively, and my supports are Bennett with either Zhongli or Raiden Shogun. Maybe in the future, I'll find a spot for Heizou in a different party setup but not right now.
Papers, Please brings dystopian satire to Android
It's been nearly a decade since it was first released, but developer Lucas Pope revealed this month that Papers, Please is finally making its way to Android devices on Aug. 5, 2022. The satirical puzzle game garnered acclaim after its release for its gameplay, political text, and portrayal of a fictional Soviet setting. Pope went on to create Return of the Obra Dinn years later, another indie that was well-received upon launch.
I've personally never played it, but I've heard a lot of good things about Papers, Please. Maybe this will be the time I decide to pick it up. It'll cost some money since it's a premium release and not free-to-play, but I think it'll be well worth the 10 or so dollars I have to spend.
Backbone is releasing a PlayStation-branded mobile controller (for iPhone right now)
It seems like just a month ago I was writing about Backbone finally gearing up to release an Android-compatible version of its Backbone One controller... oh yeah, because it was just last month. The company is back with a new announcement, this time introducing a new controller in partnership with PlayStation. The Backbone One: PlayStation Edition is only for iPhone right now, but we expect it to come to Android down the line when its other Android controller is released in the fall.
Designed to mimic the look of other PS5 accessories, it sports a white and black color scheme. Backbone even notes that it's compatible with the PS5 Pulse 3D wireless headset.
Interestingly, the Backbone app will feature a handful of PlayStation integrations, including "custom glyphs representing the iconic PlayStation shapes and the ability to browse hundreds of game titles." It will also have a row dedicated to new releases and updates from PlayStation.
Should players find a game they want to play, Backbone even says it can be selected and then will "automatically deep link" to the PlayStation app for the game to be installed on a console remotely.
Work continues on Warframe Mobile
Digital Extremes' popular free-to-play action RPG Warframe was revealed for mobile devices about a year ago, but movement on its development has seemed slow. During TennoCon 2022, an annual event to celebrate the game, the developer stated that it was still in the works.
#Warframe continues its path towards Cross Play, Cross Save, and mobile development!We’ve spent the last year exploring Cross Play and performing internal testing, with community testing coming soon. Stay tuned! #TennoCon pic.twitter.com/DBtcYJ6gA3July 16, 2022
Because the studio plans to release Warframe on mobile alongside cross-play and cross-save functionality, it appears it will be a port of the PC and console experience rather than a new game set in the Warframe universe explicitly developed for mobile.
Pokémon Unite celebrates its first anniversary
Pokémon Unite has a ton of upcoming content for players to celebrate its one-year anniversary. Aside from new challenges and cosmetic outfits that are set to drop, the game is expected to add three Pokémon over the coming weeks: Glaceon (July 21), Buzzwole (Aug. 3), and Tyranitar (Aug. 15).
Admittedly, it's been a while since I've picked up the game, and I'm sure I'm more than a tad rusty. While Glaceon and Buzzwole don't interest me too much, I do have a soft spot for Tyranitar since it resembles a dinosaur, and nothing was cooler to me as a kid than dinosaurs.
I don't know whether this will be enough to get me to pick the game back up, but regardless, it's nice to see Pokémon Unite still going strong.
New games to play
I fell off from Apex Legends Mobile and Pokémon Unite, but I'm happy to see they're still going strong with new content. I've mainly been gearing up for Genshin Impact 3.0, and while I don't use Heizou on my team, I still get excited when HoYoverse announces new additions. And while I wait for The Division Resurgence, I definitely think I'll be giving Papers, Please a shot in the meantime.
– Jennifer Locke
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Jennifer Locke has been playing video games nearly her entire life. You can find her posting pictures of her dog and obsessing over PlayStation and Xbox, Star Wars, and other geeky things.