iOS Multiplayer Status - Rejection and Steps Forward

Unfortunately, there is one major group of Sentinels fans that are not currently enjoying multiplayer - iPad users. And the reason just might surprise you.

Whenever you submit an update to the App Store, you know you will be at the whim of the opaque review process. Each individual reviewer can have their own take on things and specific aspects they look for. For instance, one of our apps in the past was rejected for using a graphic too similar to an Apple icon, after it had passed review with no problem a dozen times or more. When we received the notice that the review team had a question about our Sentinels multiplayer update, we weren’t sure what to expect, but it certainly wasn’t what we were greeted with.

Many months ago, we added a feature to the game that allowed you unlock variants with a simple “cheat code”. You can read all about the reasoning behind this decision here. It was a decision we arrived at in conjuction with you, our fans, and we thought it was the best possible choice that allowed both the thrill of discovery with the understanding that some people just wanted the content fast and easy. But more importantly, what we did not want was to make people feel like we were nickle-and-diming you with microtransactions.

Unfortunately, despite many reviewers between then and now finding no issue with the “input code to unlock a variant” feature, this one did. According to the most recent reviewer, this feature runs afoul of a guideline prohibiting the unlocking of content using mechanisms other than the App Store.

It is our belief that we are not in violation of the letter, nor the spirit of the law here since we do not sell the codes (they are freely available) nor are they unique in any way. However, even after an appeal, Apple has decided that this feature does not pass muster, so we were left with a decision.

The solution, for the moment, is that we have removed the ability to unlock variants with a code in the iPad version of Sentinels of the Multiverse. Version 1.5.1 has been submitted to Apple with this feature removed and it is now awaiting approval (note - this will not re-lock variants you have already unlocked with the code). We decided to do this for now as it’s the fastest way to get the multiplayer release out to you while we work out what to do about the variant situation. It may be that we just have to replace the code entry with a button but we haven’t spent time on a better solution yet. Just know that we remain committed to providing the best solution to you, the players, that we can.

We are hoping that the multiplayer update (now 1.5.1) will be approved by Apple and available within a week, and we will keep you posted.