The 9/17/20 release from Big Fish Games caused havoc with games on the iOS (iPad / iPod / iPhone) platforms. Another update was released on 10/5/20 that fixed remaining problems on newer iPads.
Lara Kelly Tompkins, co-admin of Facebook group Midnight Castle Help, Tips & Reference, is our contact with the developers at Elephant Games. They stated that iOS versions 9 & 10 will no longer be supported. This applies to generations 1-4 for iPads, generation 1 for iPad mini, 1-5/5c for iPhones, and 1-5 for iPods .
Lara provided info that has helped many players fix their games. In addition, I’m including the process of backing up and restoring your game from the iCloud. Even if you have an older iPad, you can restore your game from a backup and transfer it to a newer device. Alternatively, you can ask Elephant Games to transfer it to a different platform, such as a Windows PC or Android/Kindle game.
Choose Your Next Step
Note: If your game was backed up to iCloud or Facebook prior to updating it, you can skip to Step D.
A. Back Up Your Game
Connect Your Game to Facebook
If you have not installed the game update and before you do anything else, you should connect your game to Facebook. If you’ve never done this and have already installed the update, this process will not help restore your game.
- Log in to facebook.com with your Safari app. Keep it open.
- Open your game and connect it to Facebook:
- a) In the upper right corner, tap Settings.
- b) If it shows Facebook – disconnect, do nothing; you’re already connected. If not, tap Sign in with Facebook.
- c) When asked, agree to sign into Facebook. Game should now say Facebook – disconnect.
- Make sure your game is backed up on Facebook:
- a) Open Safari and go to Facebook Settings>Apps and Websites>Active Tab. To browse there, tap down arrow next to your profile photo & select Settings. In left column, select Apps and Websites. Look for the Active Tab.
- b) Ensure Midnight Castle is listed. If not, go back to your game and repeat step 2.
Back Up Your Game to iCloud
This is more time-consuming, but highly recommended before updating your game. If you had automatic backups enabled and installed the game update, you can restore your game from a backup. This is a more complete backup than the Facebook method.
- Verify you do not yet have iOS version 14 installed: tap your iPad Settings icon, then General, and Software Update. Don’t install version 14 yet.
- Open your device Settings. Scroll down to iCloud. If iCloud Drive and Backup are toggled on, you already have automatic backups turned on.
- If not on, toggle on, then tap Backup Now. This may take awhile to complete.
B. Install iOS 14 Update
Complete Part A by backing up your game. If you haven’t updated your iOS to 14 or the latest available for your device, follow these steps:
- Close all apps.
- Tap your iPad Settings icon, then General, and Software Update.
- Download/install version 14 or the latest available update. This may take awhile, so be sure your tablet is plugged in.
- Wait approximately 30 minutes before proceeding.
- You can now install the game update – Step C.
C. Install Game Update
Proceed according to your iOS and game status:
- If you have not made backups, go back to Step A.
- If you have not updated iOS to 14, go back to Step B.
- Otherwise, continue:
- Open the App Store and find the Updates tab or tap your account icon and drag the screen down.
- Install the Midnight Castle update.
- Open the game. If you have issues, go to Step D.
D. Restore Your Game
If your game is broken from installing the 9/17/20 update, and you have a recent backup, you can restore it to the previous version. The backup can be from Facebook and/or the iCloud. Facebook is the safest, less drastic method.
Restore Game from Facebook
- Close the game. Uninstall/delete game: press and hold the icon, then the X.
- Open the App Store and search for Midnight Castle.
- Tap the Cloud icon to install it. Do not open the game. Close the App Store.
- Open your Safari browser, then go to facebook.com and log in.
- Open the game. You will be back to level 1.
- Play the game a few levels and periodically tap the Settings icon.
- Once you’ve opened settings, tap Sign in With Facebook and follow the prompts.
- A popup box will display your game name & level and ask if you want to load this game. Do not close the box. Say Yes; you will not get another chance to transfer your game.
- Your backed up game will load; it may take awhile, so don’t close the game.
Restore Game from iCloud
CAUTION: Since this process varies with iOS versions, you should check the documentation at Apple.com for exact instructions. I do not advise proceeding unless you’re technically savvy. I am sharing my experience, but yours may vary! I was able to restore my iPad gen 3, iOS 9.3.5 from the iCloud until the developers disabled the game for older iPads, so I can no longer play it.
This lengthy process will delete all photos, videos and more, so if you want to preserve them, copy them to another device, online location, or storage disk. Before you can restore your device, you must have an iCloud backup. If you try to restore without a backup, you will lose everything: all apps you’ve ever installed and any purchases from Apple. In addition, if you didn’t have your game backed up before installing the update, you cannot restore it to a previous version.
if you had automatic updates enabled prior to installing the update, you might be able to restore your game to the previous ‘operable’ version. To see if you have automatic updates turned on, open your device Settings, then select iCloud. If iCloud Drive and Backup were toggled on prior to updating, you have an iCloud backup. However, if you have automatic backups on and leave the update installed, you might be resetting to a backup of your broken game.
Before You Proceed
Review this list of requirements before you start. Once you reset your device, you will not be able to find or reset this information. If you need to review your Apple ID settings, sign in to Apple.com before proceeding. Also, older versions of iOS can have more than one backup to choose from, while newer versions have only one available.
- Your current Apple ID
- Your current Apple password
- Your iTunes / App Store password
- Any cell phone to complete Apple’s 2-factor ID authentication — make sure it’s associated with your Apple ID before you begin
- Optional: keychain code you received with your device purchase
- Date from which you want to restore the backup
- Charge cord to keep your device powered up
- Close all apps.
- Open your device Settings.
- In the General section, scroll down to Reset.
- Select Erase All Content and Settings.
- If you’re not ready to erase all apps, photos, videos, data, settings, etc., do not proceed. To continue, tap Erase.
- Enter your Apple ID password and tap Erase again. You device will now delete and restart, which takes a few minutes.
- Follow the prompts to select your language, country, etc..
- Create a passcode for your device.
- Enable Location Services, if desired.
- Select Restore from iCloud backup and sign into the iCloud.
- Select text message or phone call to receive your authentication code. Enter the code in the next popup.
- If asked for, enter the keychain code that you received when you purchased your device. If you forgot it, you can choose to use your Apple password instead.
- Agree to the terms and conditions for your device.
- Select a backup date based on when your game was functioning properly or prior to updating the game. The update was released 9/17/20, so any backup prior to that date will be the previous, operable version of your game.
- Enter your password used for purchases. If you don’t remember it, you can skip this step. It warns that any purchases from iTunes or the App Store will not be restored; however, I skipped it and got back all my purchases anyway.
- It will now restore your apps and data from the iCloud. Initially, this takes 15-30 minutes. Important: once you’re able to log onto your device, open Settings and disable automatic updates. It will be toggled on/green during the reset process and you do not want the game update to reinstall automatically!
- You can now log onto your device, but downloads will continue. See this screen capture of what you can expect to see as your apps are restored. Depending on how much you had on your device, this can take hours. Be sure to keep your device plugged in through the entire restore process.
- If you look for the Midnight Castle icon, it should say Waiting… as it restores your game. Your device is slowly downloading all apps. Allow plenty of time — an hour or so — then if you want to focus on restoring your game, give the icon a tap. Your device will respond and ‘prioritize’ the game, making it ready within minutes.
GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!
Karen JC Moore 🤗❤️🤗