UK based Hello games, a company that most No Man’s Sky game lovers are familiar with. No Man’s Sky is a very popular game in which many players create colonies in space, explore new locations, trade, fight and survive.
But this isn’t Hello Games’ first success. Years before No Man’s Sky, the company won the hearts of millions with Joe Danger.
In Joe Danger, developed first for computers and consoles and then for phones and smart devices, the little man who gave the game its name used to wander around on his motorcycle and embark on dangerous adventures that lived up to his name.
JOE DANGER HAS DISAPPEARED ON IOS
However, Hello Games left Joe Danger to his fate for a while. The game has not been updated, new chapters or features have not been added.
It was fine for Android users, they could run from adventure to adventure with Joe. However, as a result of iOS OS updates, the Joe Danger game became unplayable on iPhones and could be downloaded to new devices.
Against this background, something unexpected happened last Thursday. Joe Danger has reappeared in Apple’s App Store. In addition, the graphics have been improved, the frame rate increased and the multi-touch function improved.
“OUR SECRET SHAME WAS NOT SHOWING JOE ENOUGH LOVE”
Sean Murray, the founder of Hello Games, broke the good news about the game being brought back to iPhone users with two “action packs” called Joe Danger Touch and Joe Danger Infinity.
Joe Danger reboots today on iOS 🥳
Remastered with improved graphics, high frame rate, ProMotion and gamepad support
Still one of the best looking games on iOS 😍
– Sean Murray (@NoMansSky) January 27, 2022
Explaining that the neglect of Joe Danger following the success of No Man’s Sky is a source of embarrassment for Hello Games, Murray said, “Joe has a different place in our hearts. It’s the first game we wrote when the four guys were stuck in a garage trying to get noticed. Joe helped us with the debut. It helped. Thanks to him we also learned how to write games. It’s very sad that games are slowly deteriorating and most of them are disappearing.”
“We’ve sold millions of copies of Joe Danger and we’re still getting emails from fans. Unfortunately, Joe Danger didn’t work on new Apple devices because iOS was scrapping outdated games. It was always our secret shame not showing enough love to Joe Danger due to the success of No Man’s Sky.”
A FATHER WROTE A LETTER ON ITS SON’S BEHALF
One of the “emails from fans” Murray mentioned in this open post was what prompted Joe Danger to return to iPhones.
Sharing screenshots of that email, Murray said, “This email made us very sad and wanted to make things right.”
An unnamed father’s email began with these lines:
I am writing you this letter on behalf of my son Jack. Jack is 8 years old, one of the cutest kids in the world and has been diagnosed with autism.
“LOVES JACK JOE”
The father then explained his reason for writing the email:
As you probably know, children with autism struggle with many challenges, including difficulties with social interaction. But one of the things that bonded us between Jack and I was that we both loved games, especially Joe Danger.
Jack LOVES Joe. she loves everything He calls his toy motorcycle collection “My Joe Dangers”. Every motorcycle we see on the street is “Joe Danger” to him. One of the first things I hear when I come home from a long day at work is, “C’mon daddy, let’s play Joe Danger.” Even being able to construct such a sentence is a HUGE event for a child with autism.
Joe Danger allowed Jack to interact and have fun with friends and family. In short, playing with Joe allowed Jack to experience “normal kid stuff.”
As a parent, it’s hard to describe how I felt when I saw the sheer joy Joe Danger cast on Jack’s face. But I can assure you it’s a good feeling.
“Joe Danger Helps Jack”
His father continued his lines as follows:
Now we come to the part where I need help.
Joe Danger is a crucial coping mechanism as it helps Jack’s relationship with his friends. Joe Danger’s iPhone version became Jack’s award for breaking the ordinary for people with autism.
Sitting in a noisy restaurant, walking into a crowded room, studying are situations that can be extremely stressful and yes, I’m one of those parents who says, “If you can do this, you can make a few phone calls” , but I do not care; that helps Jack.
He looked at me and said, “Then I’m going to play Joe Danger, right?” There are countless examples which I understand if he asks. It means in his language “I’m going to go through some terrible things, but I know I can get through this”. And he gets over it and Joe Danger helps him.
The problem is that since iOS was updated a while ago, Joe Danger has stopped working on newer versions; even now AppstoreIt’s not even in there. And because children with autism struggle with change, other versions don’t work.
“THANK YOU FOR MAKE MY SON A CHILD”
The App Store recommends “contacting the developer” to get the game working as if this were an everyday thing. Jack asked me to do this for him so I’m writing this email.
I don’t know if such a thing is possible or how long it would take, but getting Joe to work on newer versions of iOS is worth the world, at least for a young kid.
If that doesn’t get your heart pumping enough, consider the positive news about you in the press. If that doesn’t work either, I’m sure you could make SOME money by bringing Joe Danger back to the App Store. I thought playing on your emotional and pessimistic side would increase my chances…
Anyhow… Thank you to you and your team for the hours of fun and happiness you have given my son, not least for every time you make me and Jack forget the challenges, the therapy appointments, the doctor visits, for that you make him “a child” and everything else. I wanted to thank you
I can unequivocally say that it has made a difference in your life. Helping children with disabilities might not have been one of your thoughts when you started Joe Danger years ago, but it turned out that way and I’m grateful for that.
IT IS VERY EASY TO UNDERSTAND THIS IMPACT BUT…
Murray shared these lines from his father, then said, “As a game developer, it’s easy to underestimate the impact even the smallest games can have.”
“The fact that something you do is someone’s first game, occurs at an important moment in their life, or even is their favorite thing to do for a while just blows my mind.”
“Bringing Joe Danger back to life was a hobby project. We slowly rebuilt the game in line with 8 years of technological advances.
Now imagine Joe riding his bike into the sunset. He waves and smiles at us all with a proud tear in his eye…”