The Apple Vision Pro is “genuinely the first headset I can say I've used almost every day” — a developer working on PCVR mode for Apple’s spatial headset tells us what makes it so special

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Pips and Pixels

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Pips and Pixels is a new column by James Bentley, iMore's resident gaming expert, covering all things gaming in the Apple ecosystem. Looking at news, accessories, and titles you might have missed out on, Apple is becoming more serious about gaming than ever before. With an eye on the wider games industry, James will guide you through what could be next for Apple gamers. 

This week’s gaming news has been mostly focused on the very public fight between Apple and Epic. The two tech titans have very different approaches to the market (IE, both companies want as much money as possible from their software), but the people who lose out most are those who just want to play Fortnite natively on their iPhones. Though you could opt to play Fortnite through a streaming service, customers who have bought an iPhone 15, the best iPhone, won’t notice the power upgrade without a native port. 

Despite the relationship between Apple and Epic Games getting worse, some good news has come in for those lucky enough to get their hands on Apple Vision Pro. Developers have been working on a way to use Apple Vision Pro on PCVR for more traditional VR games and one developer has even shown it working. We managed to get in contact with a member of the dev team to figure out what makes Apple Vision Pro so special. 

Read on for the rundown.

This week's Apple gaming news

1. Apple has banned Epic Games' developer account again — "In light of Epic’s past and ongoing behavior, Apple chose to exercise" right to terminate account

After years of legal battles between Epic Games and Apple in regards to Apple’s control of its App Store, and the purchases within, things have escalated. Apple has been forced to allow third-party app stores in the EU and has banned Epic Games Sweden’s developer account. This means Epic Games, a company founded in America, can’t use its European headquarters to offer Fortnite to EU iPhones. 

2. EU demands answers over Apple's latest Epic Games twist — Bloc seeks explanation after Cupertino terminates Fortnite maker's developer account

After Epic Games Sweden’s account was banned, the EU requested an explanation as to the reasoning. Unless solved, this means the chances of getting Fortnite on iPhone have been indefinitely shelved. However, you can still play Fortnite on iPhone with a little bit of creativity. 

3. Apple Vision Pro may soon get PC VR support — SteamVR games could work thanks to open-source ALVR

Though you will have to deal with some latency problems or have to shell out for some extra components, a few smart developers have managed to get Apple Vision Pro working with PCVR. I had the chance to chat with @ShinyQuagsire, who is working on the open-source mod. He told me, “The Vision Pro is good as a computer/media device first, and it is genuinely the first headset I can say I've used almost every day. So PCVR ends up as a secondary use case, but I also like PCVR enough that having it on a device I *want* to use daily is enough of a push to get things working well.” No other headset has allowed him to get the same experience as the Apple Vision Pro, including the Meta Quest Pro which he says “was really uncomfortable” for watching JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure season 5. 

Gaming news from our friends

1. EA is laying off 670 employees, sunsetting games, and canceling "development of future licensed IP" including Respawn's Star Wars FPS from GamesRadar

Not only is the number of employees substantial here, but the mention of projects is further worrying. Multiple titles have been canceled that, presumably, have already had substantial amounts of money thrown at them. As of right now, Kotaku has reported over 8,000 layoffs in the gaming industry this year, and we’ve only just approached our third month. With the layoffs accounting for 5% of EA’s workforce, GamesRadar reports, “A grim year for the video game industry just got grimmer.”

2. As GTA 6 enters final development stretch, Rockstar is bringing its developers back to the office 5 days a week for "security" and "productivity" from GamesRadar

Despite many game studios embracing remote or hybrid work over the last few years, including Rockstar itself back in 2020, it is now mandating in-office work for its employees. Jason Schreier, who originally broke the news, claimed that “employees are not thrilled” by this choice. A report in 2022 claimed that crunch culture at Rockstar was being fixed and attributed part of this to a balance between work and home and a “flexitime” work structure, but some worry this could enable crunch to make its way back into development. 

Calendar: March's Big Game Releases


(Image credit: Inkulinati)
  • Inkulinati launched in February and I managed to try out the Mac port recently, it is a wonderful strategy game taking inspiration from medieval manuscripts. The game is tactical, surprisingly deep, quite funny, and runs perfectly on my M1 MacBook Air.
  • I also managed to try out Ultros from last month, which is a Metroidvania that managed to catch me by surprise in many ways. As you might guess from the trippy visuals, this one is not quite what you might first expect. 
  • Snufkin: Melody of Moominvalley has just launched to very positive reviews. Based on the infamous Moomin franchise, Snufkin takes Tove Jansson's unique style and makes it into a charming puzzle game suitable for both adults and inquisitive children. 
Swipe to scroll horizontally
GameRelease DatePlatformsPlayable on Apple?
FoamstarsMarch 5PS5No
ReveilMarch 7PC, Xbox, PlayStation 4 and 5, macOSYes
Snufkin: Melody of MoominvalleyMarch 7PC, Xbox, PlayStation 4 and 5, macOSYes
Unicorn OverlordMarch 8Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and 5, XboxNo
WWE 2K24March 8PC, Xbox, PlayStation 4 and 5Not natively
MLB: The Show 24March 19Xbox, PlayStation 4 and 5, macOSNo
Alone in the DarkMarch 20PC, Xbox, PlayStation 5Not natively
Dragon's Dogma 2March 22PC, Xbox, PlayStation 5Not natively
Rise of the RoninMarch 22PCNo
South Park - Snow DayMarch 26PC, Xbox, PlayStation 4 and 5Not natively

Level Up — Gaming accessories on our radar

Though there are plenty of great gaming accessories that are designed specifically with gaming in mind, my AirPods 2 are perhaps my most frequently used audio device thanks to a snug fit, great battery life, and easy connectivity. It helps that they’re currently on sale for 23% off. 

Apple AirPods 2 |$129$99 at Amazon

Apple AirPods 2 | $129 $99 at Amazon

Designed specifically to connect to an iPhone, the Apple AirPods 2 are my go-to audio device as they are just so easy to use. Once connected to your iPhone, you can simply pop them out of the charging case and they will automatically connect without any messing around — perfect for getting a quick game in on a commute. 

Hitting the Arcade — What to play on Apple Arcade

Pips and Pixels Hitting the Arcade

(Image credit: Future)

Apple Arcade is filled with tons of exclusive experiences and fantastic games. However, with so many out there, it can be hard to decide what to play. Here are a few choices I've been testing out this week:

Despite playing it for the first time years ago on Steam, I have recently restarted Slay the Spire on Apple Arcade and it’s just as great as I remember. A rogue-lite dungeon crawler where all moves are drawn from a deck of cards, it seems quite simple initially but you only realize how complex it is when you’re building huge combos and taking down waves of enemies in single turns. 

What the Car? has just received a brand new update, adding a Sneaky Sasquatch area with some new minigames. Tasking you with the simple job of driving a car to a goal, What the Car? Is so much more than that, thanks to an absurd sense of humor and cute aesthetic. 

I also spent a little time going back to Rayman Mini, a game that not only totally understands what makes the console Rayman games work well but adds meaningfully to them with its music, gameplay, and aesthetic.. It’s a platformer with a bit of a gross sense of humor at times and a sense of fun that overwhelms everything else. 

Have you played any great games this week or seen some interesting Apple gaming news we've missed? Let us know in the comments!

James Bentley

James is a staff writer and general Jack of all trades at iMore. With news, features, reviews, and guides under his belt, he has always liked Apple for its unique branding and distinctive style. Originally buying a Macbook for music and video production, he has since gone on to join the Apple ecosystem with as many devices as he can fit on his person. 

With a degree in Law and Media and being a little too young to move onto the next step of his law career, James started writing from his bedroom about games, movies, tech, and anything else he could think of. Within months, this turned into a fully-fledged career as a freelance journalist. Before joining iMore, he was a staff writer at Gfinity and saw himself published at sites like TechRadar, NME, and Eurogamer. 

As his extensive portfolio implies, James was predominantly a games journalist before joining iMore and brings with him a unique perspective on Apple itself. When not working, he is trying to catch up with the movies and albums of the year, as well as finally finishing the Yakuza series. If you like Midwest emo music or pretentious indie games that will make you cry, he’ll talk your ear off.