in the wilderness


Senior Member
Is the meaning of "in the wilderness" in the following sentence simply "desert" or it have an idiomatic meaning here, please?

Carmageddon for iPad and iPhone review
Re-released on iOS after years in the wilderness, it can’t help but seem tame by today’s high-definition standards. Source: Macword/Jan. 2013

Best Regards
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  • Aardvark01

    Senior Member
    British English (Midlands)
    In English translations of the Bible Moses led the people into the wilderness. That context does mean a desert, but we don't have such things in England. What is important is the 'wild' aspect. Any land that is not cultivated (a desert, a jungle, an uninhabited island) is called wild, and "in the wilderness" denotes being outside civilised society.
    In this context it means being outside of popular circles of thought.


    Senior Member
    English - British
    The phrase 'in the wilderness' is used to mean 'neglected' or 'ignored'.
    Here, the meaning is that the developer left it alone and did not update it.
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