App Reskinning Tutorial: Publishing the game

Testing your game before publishing it to the iTunes App Store

You need now to test the game one more time in order to make sure all your changes and updates are part of the game before submitting it to the App Store. Press "Play" to build the game. When "Game Center" pops up, enter your credentials and sign in. Play the game and check that everything runs the way it's supposed to.

Enable LIVE mode in the AdMob panel

Next, AdMob will need to be turned on, because up to now, you were running AdMob in test mode in the iPhone simulator.

enable LIVE mode AdMob

Go back to your AdMob account and click on "Sites & Apps", click on your app then "App Settings". You could customize your own banner with different colors, but this is optional.

disable AdMob test mode

However, where it says "Test mode", make sure you disable the test mode, click on "Save Settings" then you will get LIVE ads.

AdMob banner publisher ID

If you decide to go ahead with customizing your own banner, use the Publisher ID of that specific banner into your Xcode metadata file since you're allowed to create several different AdMob banners with different settings. Copy and paste next to the "ADMOB_MEDIATION_ID" variable.

AdMob mediation ID

Publishing your game to the App Store

You are now almost ready to publish your game to the App Store. There are only a few things that you're missing which are the game screenshots and the game final icons whose dimensions are 1024 wide by 1024 tall. It's pretty easy to create a screenshot if you don't have one. Open the iOS Simulator and open your game. Take a screenshot from the gameplay straight from your computer. You're gonna want to take 2 sets of screenshots, one for iPhone 3.5 inch and one for iPhone 4 inch. Once you've got your screenshots, open them with an image editor and resize them to the proper dimensions. Extend/stretch your 2 screenshots to 640px by 960px for iPhone 3.5 inch and save them as .png files. For the iPhone 4 inch, set the image canvas size to 640px by 1136px and save those. In order to add your screenshots to the game, log on Apple iTunes Connect.

iTunes Connect temporary icon

This is also a good time to have your final settings tuned up before submitting to the App Store. Click on "Manage Your Apps", click on your app where you see your temporary icon, click on "View Details", then "Edit". You should know by now what your final settings are, such as your game description, game icon and so on. Click on "Choose File" below your temporary game icon to upload your final icon, then click "Save".

update test game screenshots

Now go back to "Edit" again to upload and update your final game screenshots. Remove the test screenshots by clicking on the close "X" button then click "Save". Below your game screenshots, make also sure that "Game Center" is enabled. To do that, go back to Xcode, and in the project, go to the "Capabilities" tab and click on "Fix Issues".

Xcode Game Center fix issues

At this point, Game Center has been enabled for your game. Now go back to Itunes Connect, click on "Manage your apps", click your app, then click on the button called "Manage Game Center" and you will notice that your Game Center is now enabled. Now look around and double check that all your game settings are correct. Click back on your app "View Details" to this time drag the "Game Center" button to enable mode.

Game Center enabled

Go to your Leaderboards section and click "Edit". Check the box and click "Save". Once this is done, click on the button "Ready to Upload Binary" and then "Continue. We're now ready to take the game and publish it to the App Store.

App Store ready to upload binary

Up to now, you were testing your game through your iPhone simulator. Now, you need to switch to the real device by clicking on Iphone at the top then select "iOS Device".

switch to iOS device

You will also notice under "Product" in the top menu that "Archive" is now enabled. Click on "Archive". This will compile, take all your game files and create the executable you will send to Apple for the App Store. This process may take a while so be patient. After everything compiles, you should see an organizer window popping up that looks like this:

Xcode organizer window

If you click on "Estimate Size", it will tell you how much space you app will use on a user's device. Anything below 20 MB is great.

Next, click on "Validate". If you have followed everything properly on this app reskinning tutorial, there shouldn't be any warnings or errors. Hit the "Distribute" button next. When you "Distribute", it's also validating at the same time. Make sure you select "Submit to the iOS App Store" and click "Next". It will then use your developer license and find your provisioning profile, then click "Submit". It will now upload your game executable file to Apple for technical review which takes about 7 days. Click on "Finish" and you will just need to wait and see if your game was accepted or rejected (They will explain to you why if it is).

What to do next

AdMob app settings

You will then need to turn on your AdMob banner from test mode to LIVE mode. Only do this once your app has been accepted by Apple or Google Play Store. Log on to AdMob and make sure you got all your tax information taken care of. Then go to the "Site & Apps" section and click on "Sites & Apps". Below, you should see a table with your game info as shown below. Click on "Manage Settings" and on the next screen, click on "App Settings".

Disable AdMob test mode

After this step, scroll below and where it says "Test mode", click on "Disable test mode for all requests" and "Save Settings". This is the new Admob UI of 2014, you have something different on your screen, but basically you will still ned to get into the "Sites & Apps" section.

View sites apps in admob

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