Third 'Monument Valley' Mobile Game in the Works; Tencent Debuts 'Overwatch' Competitor

Monument Valley -Publicity-H 2019
Courtesy of Ustwo Games

Elsewhere in gaming-on-the-go, the original 'DOOM' games come to mobile and spark controversy, while EA's 'Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes' nears 80 million players.

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Ustwo Games officially revealed the start of development on a third entry in the popular indie puzzle franchise Monument Valley through a job posting on Twitter.

The job listing seeks a Game Director with a creative vision for the new project and someone to lead the team creating Monument Valley 3. The tweet in particular mentions the need for a new lead as Ustwo Games already has two other games in development. Details are unsurprisingly light as the announcement came unusually early in the development process. The reveal came a few months after the company celebrated the original Monument Valley's fifth anniversary with a live stream in April.

Monument Valley originally launched on iOS in April 2014, with an Android release the following month. In the game, players take control of the dichromatic princess Ida as she scales beautiful buildings and makes her way through mazes and labyrinths. The isometric camera and minimalistic graphics, along with the emphasis on optical illusions and mind-bending scenery, charmed critics and quickly made it a must-buy for mobile players. Monument Valley 2 was released in summer 2017 and features levels where two characters could be controlled. Reception for the sequel was generally positive as reviewers found the game stayed faithful to what made the original so beloved.

Here's what else is happening in the world of mobile games:

Ace Force Is Tencent's Answer to Overwatch

Chinese media giant Tencent's latest upcoming mobile release takes on a very similar look and style to Blizzard's Overwatch. A recent trailer showed off an anime intro and a look at some of the playable heroes, many of which look just different enough from the cast of Overwatch. The gameplay, however, is where things get familiar as elements like the HUD, graphical style and even the font share striking similarities to Blizzard's hero shooter. Tencent announced an Aug. 13 release date for China, with no word on a release outside the region.

DOOM Mobile Ports and Bethesda Login Woes

In honor of DOOM's 25th anniversary, Bethesda and id Software surprised iOS, Android and Switch owners with the sudden release of both DOOM and DOOM II. Both games are ports from over two decades ago and include additional expansions like Thy Flesh Consumed for the original DOOM and the Master Levels for DOOM II. The iOS version of DOOM is actually an update as the port was originally released in 2009.

Controversy quickly arose surrounding a mandatory login prompt players were met with before starting to play. A account is needed to play the offline game, but the backlash prompted Bethesda to reverse the requirement and the studio will update the mobile games with a patch in the future.

Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes Nearing 80 Million Players

EA's earnings release for its fiscal first quarter revealed its Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes mobile game is nearing 80 million players since it was originally launched in November 2015. Although EA's overall mobile revenue was down 16 percent over the period, the financial briefing highlighted a few other interesting tidbits: Over three million players made daily logins during the Team of the Season in-game event for FIFA Ultimate Team, and expansion pack and game pack downloads for The Sims 4 saw an increase of 55 percent year-over-year. 

Dragalia Lost Gets a Community Update

A 1.10.0 update was released for Dragalia Lost, one of Nintendo's mobile games that recently crossed the $100 million milestone in player spending. Some of the biggest changes include the addition of the Alliances feature, a way to form communities of up to 30 players where you can communicate, get help with quests and send notifications to other players when looking for a co-op session. Astral Raids also got an update as astral pieces can now be used for multiple battles within a single skirmish. A few visual improvements for icons and the HUD, like the Wyrmprints notification and the home screen background, were also modified.