Saturday, August 9, 2008

iPhone and iPod Touch As A Game Platform

Everyone has been praising the iPhone for its multimedia purpose and Internet functionality.  And just recently, the iPhone was praised by id Software's John Carmack for its innovation and power.  

With enough power to be considered in the same class as PS2 and the Xbox, Carmack has publicly blasted Steve Jobs and Apple for ignoring the potential for gaming on the Mac in the past.  Nevertheless, Carmack is definitely excited about the games id Software will be release for the Apple's touch platform.

However, is there anything Apple should be doing to actively court game developers?  A cursory check in at Inside Mac Games, a site dedicated to news and reviews of Mac Games, and mac game store (name speaks for itself), there is not a shortage of games  being developed for the Mac.

Perhaps, what Carmack is referring to the lack of regular spotlights being put in Mac gaming at press events and the lack of hardware support.  The hot-selling Macbook uses Intel's x3100 integrated graphics processor which everyone knows does not have the power to handle current 3D games.  (Apple Games is an entire section dedicate to just games.)  

This time, things may be different with the iPhone.  It is an opportunity for Apple to grow market share.  And there is evidence pointing to that.  

For the last two generation of iPods, iPod games was prominently featured at its annual fall event to freshing the iPod lineup.  There are 33 games currently for the iPod and hundreds of games for the touch platform while more than half of the top twenty apps downloaded from the app store are games.

Sega was a feature game developer brought in to highlight the iPhone's potential as a game device along with other entertainment oriented developers.  Maybe Apple is getting serious about gaming after all.  

Well, maybe just mobile gaming.  

Note:  Is it difficult to extend the games onto the Apple TV and use the iPhone as a controller?  I wonder how long before rumors about it start to circulate.

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