Apple Arcade features a secret trove of surprisingly fantastic games.
While Apple’s video game subscription service hasn’t broken into the mainstream in the same way as Xbox Game Pass, it still features a great library of mobile games that drop the microtransaction-filled fluff that permeates through most mobile titles. In fact, many of these games are exclusives, and PlatinumGames’ World of Demons is one of the best games you can only find on Apple Arcade.
PlatinumGames is best known for intense action games like Bayonetta, Astral Chain, and The Wonderful 101, and World of Demons for Apple Arcade manages to stand up there with their best. It somehow manages to capture the intense flair of PlatinumGames’ signature action style while retaining a beautiful art style reminiscent of games like Okami.
If you have an iPhone, Mac, or Apple TV, you shouldn’t miss out on one of the best action games you can play on Apple Arcade.
World of Demons follows a samurai named Onimaru as he attempts to track down the Shuten Doji, the lord of all Yokai after he reemerges and causes the world’s yokai to go insane. To make up for his past sins, Onimaru travels from level to level, saving many of the Yokai who attack him as he searches for the Shuten Doji.
It’s a compelling throughline that gives every story-based encounter sensible context. You’ll meet new samurai who will help you over the course of your adventure, so even if you’re not a big fan of Onimaru, you’ll eventually have other options.
World of Demons is made up of many bite-sized levels, each of which is split into smaller areas where you can find secrets and fight several batches of Yokai. At its core, combat in World of Demons relies on a simple attack and dodge interface. Still, these have a surprising amount of combo depth depending on how the player paces and combines these moves, so don’t just button mash.
Your moveset will expand very quickly as you defeat more and more Yokai. You’ll be able to use each Yokai you defeat as a minion for an extra attack. You can collect even more of them throughout levels and must keep their individual strengths, weakness, and ranges in mind when choosing which ones to use during a fight.
This creates a build-your-own combo type of system as you carefully select which Yokai will best benefit your character’s basic attack as well as the attacks of other Yokai. You can use two of the same Yokai for an even more powerful version of their attack, so choosing ones that also appear in the level you are playing is also a smart move.
In between levels, you can also level up Yokai and buy better gear to take into battle, earning currency through main quests and side missions. Thankfully, the game has no microtransactions to speak of because it’s on Apple Arcade, so the game is paced well and doesn’t have the trappings that hold back so many of its peers on mobile.
As mentioned, the amazing Sumi-e inspired visuals also make the whole experience gorgeous to look at. This similarity to Okami isn’t really a surprise, as many former PlatinumGames developers worked on that game at Capcom. World of Demons is certainly one of the prettiest games on Apple Arcade, as being on mobile doesn’t mean PlatinumGames cheapened out the game’s graphics.
As an action game meant to be played in short bursts on mobile, World of Demons checks all of the right boxes. While the simplicity does become a bit more apparent when playing on a Mac or Apple TV, it still never felt boring and could still fit right in on a system like the Nintendo Switch.
If you happen to have an Apple Arcade subscription that you’ve been ignoring or you are willing to spend $5 to get the service for a month, definitely take the time to check out World of Demons as it is one of the best action games on mobile ever.
World of Demons is available now for Apple Arcade on iOS, Mac, and Apple TV.