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New release roundup: The best new mobile games from RPG gachas to Web3 tower defence

We highlight five new games that have broken cover and are all set to do big business
New release roundup: The best new mobile games from RPG gachas to Web3 tower defence
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In the .biz realm, we often find ourselves wrapped up in the investments, deals and stats of the gaming world (and rightly so), but it’s also important to highlight the games themselves - the fruits of the labour that can only appear after years of research, funding and, of course, development.

So here are the most exciting new mobile games right now, the developers and publishers behind them, and why, exactly, they've made the cut.

Atelier Resleriana: Forgotten Alchemy & the Liberator of Polar Night

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Four months on from its Japanese release, Atelier Resleriana: Forgotten Alchemy & the Liberator of Polar Night has finally launched globally. And giving fans everywhere the chance to pull for their favourite characters from across the series, Resleriana is pulling together over 25 years of history with this first mainline mobile game.

Series developer Gust also made Resleriana and has kept it true to Atelier’s RPG roots, with collecting, battling, and synthesising comprising the core trinity of the gameplay loop fans have come to expect. Gacha elements have been added in for good measure, offering a chance to obtain legacy characters in what will mark a nostalgic return for some and a first-time introduction for others.

Gust’s parent company Koei Tecmo published the game, with the Atelier series as a whole having expanded greatly since Gust’s absorption in 2014; where the main series was once a PlayStation exclusive, it has since grown to Nintendo, PC, and now mobile too.

Soul Strike!

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Com2uS’s chibi-style RPG Soul Strike! subverts the grinding sessions often necessary in the role-playing genre and instead offers plenty of instant hack ‘n slash action and a quick sense of progression. Being an idle game too, the gameplay is made "easy peasy monster squishy" even when facing hordes of vampires, titans and dragons.

Idle progress can be made between play sessions and parts can be acquired to make unique builds, giving players the chance to become as overpowered as they like with their teams of cutesy 2D characters.

Soul Strike! isn’t Com2uS’s first foray into RPGs or idle games either - with a back catalogue including Arcana Tactics, Eternal Sword, and Slime Hunter: Idle Warrior.

Art of Rally

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If racing iconic cars through stylised environments sounds like your cup of tea, then Art of Rally offers just that plus daily challenges to keep you coming back for more. Noodlecake Studios has launched this racing game with a range of modes and plenty of iconic vehicles from the 60s to Group B.

Furthermore, leaderboards offer players the all-important ability to compete for top rankings as they race around stunning environments blending reality and idealism - whether that means racing through snow-covered mountains or autumnal lakesides, cheery blossom trails or suburban sunsets.

Funselektor's new game may well be the best-looking title in publisher Noodlecake library, which is saying something when another visual stunner like Alto’s Adventure is in the running.

Ponpu

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While mobile gaming subscription services predominantly revolve around Netflix and Apple Arcade, they aren’t the only companies wading deeper into the waters; Netflix isn’t even the only video streaming platform getting involved anymore - Crunchyroll is too, with premium members now getting free access to anime-themed games.

Ponpu is among them, giving Crunchyroll Mega Fan and Ultimate Fan subscribers an ad-free, IAP-free experience so that they can focus on pure unadulterated action puzzle gameplay. It also features full controller support, multiple language options, and the chance to embark on a Duck God’s quest to save the universe; the stakes are high for such a minimalistic title.

Subscriptions are certainly taking off in the wider mobile gaming world. Netflix is said to be planning new monetisation tactics and tailoring games based on its broader audience, while Apple Arcade has been getting big new exclusives like the latest 3D Sonic game. Meanwhile, the number of individual games utilising their own subscription models nearly tripled in 2023.

AstrArk: Stage ONE

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Now in alpha testing, Moonveil’s AstrArk: Stage ONE has landed as the latest tower defence game with a twist: Web3 elements. There are currently 800 free mint Genesis NFTs said to be among the most valuable and sought-after in Moonveil’s ecosystem, with ownership privileges and "enduring rewards" guaranteed.

In-game, players choose commanders, assemble teams and build tactical formations to take on all sorts of battle modes, with single-player and multiplayer content included.

And while AstrArk may be this development studio’s debut game, with a founder like ex-Riot China leader MJ Wong running the show, Moonveil’s starting first title follows Wong’s accumulation of knowledge across his work on Wild Rift, Teamfight Tactics, and as an investment banker.