Shameless unpacking clone (was) the App Store’s top download

Luke Plunkett, Kotaku:

Unpacking was one of the best games of 2021, to the point where it didn’t just make my personal GOTY list, but the entire site’s as well. It is currently available on PC, Mac, Switch and Xbox One. It is most definitely not available on Apple’s iOS devices.

And yet! Earlier today the top free download on the App Store, outranking even YouTube, Tik-Tok and Instagram, was a game called Unpacking Master (it has since slipped back down the charts) which, as you may have guessed from the pricepoint and platform, is not just inspired by Unpacking, but is a criminally shameless clone of it.

Shameless cloning, with enough of an effort to get the copying good enough to fool anyone familiar with the game into thinking this was the real deal.

But it’s not:

To Apple’s credit, the game appears to be gone from the App Store. Unlike a subscription scam app, which Apple might be able to detect by digging through and taking a closer look at any apps with a high subscription price, this was a free app, making its money from advertising.

Unless the App Store reviewer was familiar with the original game, how could they have detected a clone like this? Clearly, App Store folks are paying attention to the tech press/social media.

Side note: As I write this, other games from the same developer are still up on the App Store.