It’s rather funny when I submit a game to the Apple App Store, and have it rejected. Keep in mind that I’ve built about 70 games, so I know how to avoid doing things that would cause a rejection.
Usually the reason for rejection is that the screen shots don’t accurately reflect the game. Games on the App Store can have up to 5 screen shots for someone to get a feeling on how the game works, and Apple insists the screen shots must be sufficiently informative and accurate.
I tried explaining to Apple that about 90% of the people who download Blindfold Games are blind, and screen shots are meaningless. Apple replies “You need screen shots so that other people know what the app will do, otherwise they won’t get the game”. I replied, “Yes, that’s the point. Sighted people are not interested in audio games. Why should I bother?” Apple replies “Because if you don’t, we’ll reject your app.” (Apple phrased it more pleasantly than that, but that was their point).
In the latest round, they rejected Blindfold Word Search, because they didn’t like the screen layout. Even though it’s an audio game, I still show the word search grid, up to 20 rows by 20 columns, on the screen, using a font size of about 8. Apple said the grid was not properly centered, and the font was too small; that violates Apple’s rule of good screen layout. I countered with that doesn’t matter – it’s an audio game, and I can just keep the screen dark. Apple said that too violates the screen layout rule.
I said I can make the font bigger, but then half of the columns won’t fit on the screen. Apple said that’s OK, people can scroll back and forth. I said that blind people navigate in the word search grid by swiping left, right, up and down, and that adding scrolling would just make the game confusing, and since they don’t see the screen, how would they know when to scroll the screen.
Apple said the app, as it stands now, may work for blind people, but it doesn’t match Apple’s requirements for everyone else, so sighted people will think the font is too small to see; you need to raise the font size, allow for scrolling.
We went back and forth like this for 34 minutes. I timed it. I have a fix that can work, but it’s a complete waste of time and effort.
Latest update: I made the changes last night, and Apple approved the app today. Details on this app in the next blog.