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How to Make a Game for the App Store (and Avoid Rejection!)

Wondering how to make a game for the App Store? Asking yourself this question means you’re on the right path! Apple’s App Store is one of the most popular app marketplaces and therefore a great place to make your app available.

However, it comes with a set of guidelines to follow in order to have your app accepted.

👀 Let’s dive in.

Learn How to Make a Game for the App Store

Beginner’s Guide on How to Make a Mobile Game

Making your own mobile game is exciting! And challenging. Apart from obvious technical skills, you have to be organized, clear on your objectives and the process to get there. Some steps include:

  1. Define your game concept
  2. Be clear on your budget
  3. Refine your game development basics
  4. Plan for launch and marketing
  5. Make sure your game meets Apple’s Terms and is legally-compliant

🔍 If you need more practical information on this, we recommend taking a look at this beginner’s guide on how to make a mobile game.

Build, Optimize and Test Your App

For building your app, Apple requires all iOS and iPadOS apps submitted to the App Store to be built with Xcode 14.1 and the iOS 16.1 SDK.

After you have created your app, you need to plan for its release and make sure it is ready to be launched publicly:

  • Is it optimized for the latest version of iOS? ➡️ Apple has an SDK for iOS and many APIs to make this easier!
  • Does it support all screens? ➡️ Your app must display normally whether on an iPhone 8 or 13. Plus, you shouldn’t just focus on how to make a game for iPhone only. You might want to adapt it to iPad, Mac… You should test it on different devices and address any UI issues.
  • Is your app working correctly? ➡️ Your app should work seamlessly with any device capabilities. Plus, don’t forget to get some feedback with beta testing!
how to make a game for the app store

Answer These Questions Before Submitting Your App to the App Store

To know how to make a game for the App Store, it’s essential to take a look at documentation on the App Store. Apple has a set of guidelines you need to follow before submitting your game app. It can be seen as a great resource with tips for building and optimizing your app, but it also means you have to meet a number of requirements for your app not to be rejected.


In 2020, nearly 1 million problematic new apps, and an additional nearly 1 million app updates, were rejected or removed

Apple – May 11, 2021

We recap below the main questions you need to ask yourself before submitting your app, broken down into the 5 areas from Apple guidelines.


  • Does your app contain upsetting or offensive content?
  • Does your app have any user-generated content?
  • Can it damage user devices? Is it likely to cause physical harm from its use?
  • If your target audience is children, did you design your app as such and did you submit it as part of the Kids Category?


  • Did you test your app in beta/trial version/demo before submitting it?
  • Is your app entirely functioning (no bugs), complete, and in its final version? Is it compatible with most hardware?
  • Does your product page description, images, metadata reflect your app truthfully?


  • How do you plan to monetize your app on the App Store?
  • Is your pricing appropriate, clear, and eventually mentioned in the description?
  • Do you plan any in-app purchases? If yes, are they easily recognizable?

Is it free to put a game on the App Store?

Technically, when it comes to defining a price for your app, or leaving it for free, it’s entirely up to you. However, in order to put an app on the App Store, you have to join the Apple Developer Program. For doing so, the annual membership is $99.


  • Can you consider your app to be useful, simple, with a great design?
  • Is your app “unique”? Did you copy any other existing apps? Beware of intellectual property infringement!
  • Is your app hosting or containing extensions, different “sign in” options including Sign in with Apple?
  • If you offer a streaming game, does it meet requirements?

Legal + Meeting Apple’s Terms

  • Privacy, from Apple’s Terms: “Apps must comply with all legal requirements in any location where you make them available (…) Protecting user privacy is paramount in the Apple ecosystem, and you should use care when handling personal data to ensure you’ve complied with privacy best practices, applicable laws (…) All apps must include a link to their privacy policy in the App Store Connect metadata field and within the app in an easily accessible manner.” Do you have a privacy policy? Is it available offline? Does it explicitly mention: if any, what user personal data the app collects? Why? How? If shared, with whom? If stored, for how long? How can user revoke consent or request deletion of their data?
  • Kids: Do you comply with laws like COPPA and the GDPR? Make sure your kids app does not send personal or device information to third parties, nor include third-party analytics or third-party advertising. More in this guide.
  • Intellectual property: Does your game include content that you created or that you have a license to use?

➡️ It’s a lot of privacy requirements to meet! Apple says it in their Terms, the legal aspect of making a game app is complicated, but it’s your responsibility. In 2020, 215,000+ apps were rejected by Apple for privacy violations. Apple mentions in their guidelines they are particularly careful when it comes to gaming and take extra time for the review process as it is highly regulated.

Avoid App Store rejection

Meet legal requirements and Apple’s guidelines

Generate a privacy policy for your game app now

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