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The Mobile Stigma Strikes Again? ‘Eisenhorn: Xenos’ Hits Mobile After the PC Version

Remember Eisenhorn: Xenos? Pixel Hero Games’ action game set in the Warhammer universe based on the Eisenhorn books? Well, the good news is that the game is still kicking, as the developers have released a new trailer today, and a release date for the PC version is set for May 19th. The bad news is that if you’re waiting to play it on mobile, you’re going to have to wait, as the game isn’t hitting iOS and Android until some undetermined point in the future. Rats.

I’m a bit disappointed that this general situation is happening again. The game should be just fine on mobile – it was one of the more impressive-looking games demoed at GDC 2015, though we weren’t allowed to take video then, unfortunately. Thankfully, we did this year. I know there’s good reasons for a game to not hit mobile before other platforms, particularly that a mobile version requires testing with touch controls and the unique quirks of those devices in order to work, sure. But it also feels like developers get to use this as a convenient excuse to avoid the mobile stigma with making a game seem like it’s just for those picky PC/console gamers who don’t want one single drop of the mobile stench hitting their games.

Again, I get that it might be easier and smarter to release a game on PC/console first – particularly when developers can use that to justify selling their games for higher prices. Or, heck, selling their game outright in the first place. Like, Pixel Hero is going to sell the game for $24.99 on PC. If they tried to sell it for $24.99 on mobile first, people would lose their damn minds. There would be riots in the streets. So, I can’t blame Pixel Hero for releasing on PC first, when it might be the only way they could even charge $9.99 on mobile without getting people whining about it. And, like, I’d love to play Leap of Fate on my iPad right now despite the game having been in the works for the platform for years now – there were builds floating around in 2014– but for reasons both good and sensible, I can’t yet.

The rational part of me gets why the status quo with developers releasing cross-platform games on mobile last exists, and understands for developers in a rough market why things are the way they are. But the emotional part of me doesn’t have to like it.