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Theorizing a Big Apple Push Into Gaming

timothy posted more than 6 years ago | from the remember-nanosaur-fondly dept.

Portables (Apple) 364

Ian Lamont writes "Terrence Russell has outlined an interesting theory about what industry Apple intends to break into next. He points to games. Forget Pippin II, or an iMac gaming rig — he thinks the mobile realm is where Apple will make a big product push. It's not the first bit of speculation about Apple's renewed interest in gaming, but Russell's theory may have more legs, considering Apple's invitation to develop games on the iPhone SDK, its strong mobile product line, and a Apple trademark extension filed three months ago."

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364 comments

fart penis (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341146)

lollershakes

Games? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341372)

More like GAYmes.

iPippin? (0)

Kenja (541830) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341160)

Apple tried this once before. It did not go over so well. Why would this next time around be any different?

Re:iPippin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341198)

Question, was Pippin named after the Broadway musical Pippin? I saw that on TV as a child and found it quite disturbing.

Re:iPippin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341682)

I always figured it was named after the basketball player, Scotty...

Re:iPippin? (1)

onkelonkel (560274) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341720)

No way dude. It's named after "Pippin the Christmas Pig". Really.

Re:iPippin? (1)

S.O.B. (136083) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341844)

I always figured it was named after the basketball player, Scotty...


Scotty? Was he named after the Chief Engineer of the Enterprise?

Re:iPippin? (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341216)

They'd almost be better off making a console than pushing for games on the iPhone/touch platform. Just my opinion. I predict that their push to gaming will be about as successful as AppleTV.

Re:iPippin? (5, Insightful)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341340)

They'd almost be better off making a console...
Apple systems already share some properties with gaming consoles, namely the harware homogeny of Apple systems.

While to me an annoyance, this standardization might actually work in Apple's favor when trying to woo game makers, as it could act to simplify development.

Re:iPippin? (1)

earnest murderer (888716) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341830)

While to me an annoyance, this standardization might actually work in Apple's favor when trying to woo game makers, as it could act to simplify development.
Perhaps, but it would have to be broken out as wholly independent from the OS. Apple's failure to update components and fix bugs in the past is a big part of what has kept games off the platform. Apple seems to be changing their ways, and some big names publish there now. But there's a lot of "little guys" that lost their shirts or were stonewalled because of Apples passing interest.

Re:iPippin? (-1, Troll)

hitmark (640295) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341506)

the iphone could very well become a one screen ds if done right.

bejewled and friends and it should become a even greater ladies phone then it seems to be already. and those games are impressive casual games.

and they more or less have a console already, the mac mini. just need some beefy 3D under the hood and some usb or bluetooth controllers.

tie it all into .mac and your looking at something similar to xbox live. especially if they pull of something like XNA for both fixed and mobile gaming.

that new iphone game released? find it in the app stores games section or via itunes store. hell, it could become the next steam.

hmm, maybe this is where apple is going with pa semi?!

Re:iPippin? (2, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#23342042)

They'd almost be better off making a console than pushing for games on the iPhone/touch platform.
I can imagine that U.S.-based microISVs selling proprietary shareware would have a better time getting published on iPhone than on Xbox Live Arcade or WiiWare. Nintendo's Wii development agreement, for one, explicitly excludes microISVs. Besides, players expect more sophisticated graphics from a system that is not handheld, and these graphics are often much more expensive to produce.

Re:iPippin? (5, Insightful)

face_daddy (1286232) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341224)

GM tried the electric car once before, it failed, and they're doing it again. It's because the Gaming industry is one that hasn't been affected by a potential recession, it continues to expand in revenue and profitability. It's because games (much like electric cars) are what consumers want. Go where the market lies, don't be afraid of past failures, or you'll be doomed to irrelevance.

Re:iPippin? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341454)

GM tried the electric car once before, it failed, and they're doing it again.

If by "fail" you mean that nearly everyone that had one really like them and wanted to buy them, but GM wouldn't let them buy out their leases because they didn't want to upset the oil industry, then yes, it was a complete and total failure...

Re:iPippin? (4, Informative)

dloose (900754) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341738)

I love conspiracy theories as much as the next guy, but there were some very good reasons to eliminate the EV1. Check out this link: http://blogs.edmunds.com/karl/239 [edmunds.com]

Re:iPippin? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341368)

Maybe because it's 10+ years later and both Apple and the gaming industry have changed?

Re:iPippin? (1)

AmaDaden (794446) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341392)

Because they are now a major player in the PC market and Vista is a flop. Things are no longer what they were.

Re:iPippin? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341778)

Yes, Vista is a huge 140 million dollar flop. I bet Apple would really hate to sell 10 times the amount of operating systems they currently sell. If it wasn't for the iPod they would have been edged out by now.

Re:iPippin? (1, Flamebait)

Uncle Focker (1277658) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341934)

Because they are now a major player in the PC market
Yep, they've now got 4% of the market! They're in the big times now!

Because they have an already successful base (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341406)

Because this time, they are not trying to break into a market. They are already in a market, with a very popular device (iPhone/Touch), that has decent power and 3D capabilities along with some really good control systems (accelerometers/multitouch).

Anyone who saw the demo of Monkeyball running on the iPhone from the launch of the SDK, is crazy to think that a whole lot of cool games are not forthcoming.

Furthermore, gaming on the iPhone has the same kind of hook that Wii gaming does - it's going to be kind of unique. Exactly because there's really nothing like a D-Pad on the system games are going to have to figure out what games work best with controls using multi-touch and the accelerometers. Being unqiue is also helpful in that games for the syste,m will seem different than what people are used to, even from the DS which already has a touchscreen.

Re:iPippin? (2, Insightful)

omeomi (675045) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341492)

The iPhone / iTouch actually has a pretty unique interface for casual games. The touch screen and accelerometer allow for some really unique games that don't translate as well onto other devices. For instance, there are a few marble-maze sorts of games available for Jailbroken iPhones that allow you to control work your way through a maze just by tilting the phone. It's like those old games with a little bead of mercury or a ball bearing, only without the problems of friction making the ball stick. And there's a partial port of Crayon Physics [experimentalgameplay.com] that's really slick. Given a handful of good games, I could easily see the iPhone becoming a great handheld gaming platform.

Re:iPippin? (1, Interesting)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341516)

Well this time it would go over better because this time game developers are 'pissed' at Microsoft and have been moving to OpenGL from DirectX. That was one of the reasons why Blizzard chose OpenGL rather than DirectX; It wasn't because they had a big huggy fest for Macs and Linx, it was because they were pissed at Microsoft and hated DirectX. So they started developing on OpenGL and as a result have HUGE market!!! No one else can natively play on Macs and Linux and though people may scoff, this has greatly extended their market.

Re:iPippin? (3, Insightful)

molotovjester (1273662) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341922)

...it was because they were pissed at Microsoft and hated DirectX.
I realize this comment was more or less off the cuff - but to say that THE strategic decision to use one platform over another was because they were 'pissed' at Microsoft is absurd. How do you account for the fact that all of their software is developed first for Microsoft based OS and not for Apple OS?

So they started developing on OpenGL and as a result have HUGE market!!!
Secondly, you state that the reason they have a huge market is because they chose OpenGL. I am willing to bet that the majority of their user base had no information as to whether their games were developed using DirectX or OpenGL.

I can in fact prove to you by pointing to the system requirements of their pre-WCIII games that they did in fact require DirectX.

So besides adding fanboy momentum to this movement...what exactly are you saying here that is worth any value?

Let me make you a Fanboy Sandwhich, it is made of Irrational Appreciation wedged between two slices of Untruths.

Re:iPippin? (1)

VoltCurve (1248644) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341974)

Hated DirectX? Developers love directX. you will note that blizzard games on Windows platforms (even the recent ones) default to DirectX mode.

Re:iPippin? (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341966)

So they started developing on OpenGL and as a result have HUGE market!!! No one else can natively play on Macs and Linux
WoW doesn't play "natively" on Linux. Sure it works pretty well on WINE (I've played it on there myself), but that's not native and a lot of other games will do the same thing.

It does raise in interesting question though: why the hell *hasn't* Blizzard released a native version of WoW for Linux? It runs on OpenGL, it's already been ported to a Unix-like OS (MacOS X). One would think that the time required to actually do a Linux port would be trivial.

Re:iPippin? (1)

lterrym (1285378) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341556)

Apple tried this once before. It did not go over so well. Why would this next time around be any different?
For Christ's sake, the Pippin was a Playstation 1 competitor from 1995. It was pre-Jobs, pre-iMac, pre-mass acceptance of the 'net, a relic from the days when it looked like interactive CD-Roms were the future of entertainment. What does any of that have to do with a line of games for the iPhone?

Not that I think Apple will be making a "big push" into gaming; I think they will gradually be releasing more and more games as download-for-pay content, just as every other provider does with Jamdat games and the like. It's newsworthy enough for Slashdot, I guess, but not worth the hyperbole.

Re:iPippin? (1)

Seto89 (986727) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341998)

'cause third time lucky - look at Sony. They tried once with Betamax (failed), twice with Laserdisc (failed), then got angry, bribed the competition and succeeded with Blue-ray.

I mean even statistically, it has to work one day, right?

Fruit market (-1, Troll)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341180)

I think that Apple should get into the fruit market. They've got a catchy, relevant domain name.

http://what-is-what.com/what_is/apple.html [what-is-what.com]

Re:Fruit market (0, Troll)

Hatta (162192) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341710)

I thought Apples were already marketed to fruits.

Yes! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341184)

Apple doing games! I can't wait! First poster!!!!!!!!

Graphics Cards (2, Insightful)

neoform (551705) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341194)

How about Apple fixes it's graphics cards lineup before shooting for the moon.

I have a Quad-Core 3.0 and I can tell you, with the GPUs that came with it, I can barely play WoW, nevermind any other new games.

I had to buy a new PC in order to play any of the new games out because my mac (as great as it is), cannot handle the games.

Re:Graphics Cards (2, Insightful)

abigor (540274) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341526)

Key word from the summary: "mobile".

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

neoform (551705) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341574)

True enough, but why should apple focus on only mobile gaming and ignore their computer lineup?

Re:Graphics Cards (3, Insightful)

abigor (540274) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341706)

As a guess, I'd say it's because desktop computer gaming is dwindling, while mobile sales are exploding and it's a ripe new market for a convergence device. Meanwhile, the stationary gaming experience is owned by consoles.

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 6 years ago | (#23342034)

They're all seperate markets. While many stationary genre's have moved to consoles, many are still mostly on the PC. RTS and MMORPG is still almost exclusively on the PC. I'm guessing that flight sims will remain there too.

That being said, as TV's and computers start to converge even more, I see the line between "computer gaming" and "console gaming" disappearing all together.

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

Penguin Follower (576525) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341598)

How about Apple fixes it's graphics cards lineup before shooting for the moon. I have a Quad-Core 3.0 and I can tell you, with the GPUs that came with it, I can barely play WoW, nevermind any other new games. I had to buy a new PC in order to play any of the new games out because my mac (as great as it is), cannot handle the games.

Strange, I have a quad-core 2.66 with the (optional at the time) ATI X1900 XT 512MB card and it plays Call of Duty 4 when I bootcamp into Windows XP Pro just fine. Mind you, I don't have all the settings cranked (I turn off FSAA, everything else is cranked). It gets acceptable enough frames per second for me.

Re:Graphics Cards (4, Insightful)

grahamd0 (1129971) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341610)

The lowest-end iMac comes with a Radeon HD 2400XT. The high-end iMac has a GeForce 8800. The MacBook Pros have Geforce 8600/8800s. You can get a geforce 8800 on a Mac Pro.

Mac Minis and Macbooks aren't targeted in any way toward anyone who's interested in gaming.

Unless you're uber-l337, modern Macs are just fine in the graphics department.

Re:Graphics Cards (0, Offtopic)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341616)

Which video card did you select when you configured it?

My MBP (first gen 2.14ghz) handles WoW just fine.

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341626)

I have a Quad-Core 3.0 and I can tell you, with the GPUs that came with it, I can barely play WoW, nevermind any other new games.
There's something screwed up with your computer then. I have a 1.67 GHz PowerBook G4 and I can play WoW on this with nary a slowdown except in major cities during peak hours.

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

AstrumPreliator (708436) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341716)

Same here for when I played WoW. The powerbook ran bloody hot but it still worked just fine except in places like IronForge.

my iMac does just fine! (1)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341656)

I play WOW using a white 2.13 dual core with 7600GT and it does fine for WOW, better it works running three sessions at one time. Granted two are in the lowest settings at 640x480 while the main is usually full screen with everything on. I use a little tool named Clonekeys to mirror keystrokes from one session to another while implementing in game macros to tie them all together. I have launched five but all of them had to be minimal to even work. Now I do have 3gb of ram and that seemed to be the key to success.

Now the latest generation iMac has an 8800GS equivalent and the 8800GT can be used in the Mac Pro lines so that should allow for more stressful games to be played either in OS X or under XP.

I do agree their offering is a little slim. I would also like to see a Mac Pro "Junior" line using the same processors as the iMac/Mini but with the ability to slap cards in as I want. That would be the best option but I highly doubt it as Mac seems to be becoming a little corner operation at times. That to me is the only real hole in their line up is an expandable headless unit.

Frankly, with the ability to run XP on the iMac and the 8800GS I may have a good solution for a few years but ideally I would want the same GPU in a Mac Mini or best yet a headless "mini Mac Pro"; junior has bad connotations

Re:my iMac does just fine! (1)

pressman (182919) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341798)

That would be the best option but I highly doubt it as Mac seems to be becoming a little corner operation at times

just to correct a little pet peeve of mine. Mac(intosh) is a product produced by Apple, Inc; formerly Apple Computers.

Mac is not the company name, but a branded product line.

Re:Graphics Cards (4, Insightful)

Moridineas (213502) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341754)

Ok, I'm 99% sure you're a blatant troll, but to give you the benefit of doubt..

There's something terribly wrong with your computer. I could crawl along in warcraft with my old Geforce2 on an AthlonXP. Very, very slow, and very low quality, but it could run. WoW ran fine on my powerbook 1.25ghz g4.

What's the worst GPU that comes with a quadcore? The ATI 2600? With quadcore, 2gb ram (I don't think you can get mac pro with less?), and a HD2600, you should be fine. Probably not max graphics nor max resolution, and I would guess you would dip into the 20s of fps at times if you're pushing your graphical settings, but very playable.

If you paid the approximately $100 extra bucks to get a Geforce 8800, you should be rolling along at just about any resolution and maxed out graphics.

Apple offers plenty of good CPUs.

Re:Graphics Cards (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341756)

I can play WoW well on a 17" MBP with an X1600 mobile in it. I'm guessing you must have gone really cheap on the video if you are having trouble. Did you get the nVidia 7300?

Re:Graphics Cards (2, Informative)

Bill_the_Engineer (772575) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341762)

I have a Quad-Core 3.0 and I can tell you, with the GPUs that came with it, I can barely play WoW, nevermind any other new games.

I'm having no troubles running WoW on my 2.16GHz MacBook Pro with only 2GB of RAM. It even works great when I use my 24" wide-screen external monitor at it's native resolution.

The only time I heard people complain about the performance of WoW, was when they didn't realize that WoW runs natively on the Mac and were running it within Parallels....

Re:Graphics Cards (1)

pressman (182919) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341770)

WoW. I have a 3 year old Dual 2.7 G5 with the stock video card and I'm a full blown WoW addict and get decent frame rates even standing in the middle of a bunch of mages going AoE crazy.

Are you trying to run the game at 1200fps or something?

I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but... (2, Interesting)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341226)

If Mac had a stronger stranglehold on gaming and depending on how things go, isn't Apple based off Unix? So wouldn't that cause games to trickle down to Linux via people reverse engineering and other methods, as well? /correct me if I'm wrong, as said I don't know Mac for Jack

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (5, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341400)

Unless you're talking about hunt the wumpus or curses-based tetris, it doesn't do jack shit for Linux.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (2, Interesting)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341464)

Because those are the next step in OSS gaming? Methinks someone needs to look at Vegastrike or a similar project.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (1, Informative)

omeomi (675045) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341522)

If Mac had a stronger stranglehold on gaming and depending on how things go, isn't Apple based off Unix?

Apple OSX is based of BSD, so yes, indirectly it is based off of Unix. However, many applications are written in Objective C, which I don't think is available for Linux.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (5, Informative)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341584)

Apple uses a modified version of gcc, but gcc has supported objective C since the NextStep days. GNUStep provides an OpenStep implementation.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341714)

So, as I still don't understand,

would that enable "mac games" to be ported as "linux games" or not necessarily? Especially for graphics intensive games.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341920)

Short answer: no.

Long answer: no.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341696)

However, many applications are written in Objective C
Indeed, but I thought you could break down Objective C into C/C++ code. If true, you could port a game from the iPhone (objective C) to Google Android (C/C++ with its own framework) without too much trouble. This would allow the game makers to reach a much wider audience and even if the game is a flop for the iPhone/iPodTouch it could be successful on other mobile platforms.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341722)

There is a GNU obj-c compiler for Linux. You won't have cocoa or Apple's other proprietary libraries to work with, though.

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (1)

FictionPimp (712802) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341790)

GCC will compile objective-C last time I checked.

The language just doesn't have many followers outside its select worlds for some reason. (Not being a c++, C, or objective-C developer, I can comment why.)

Re:I'm definitely not knowledgeable with Mac, but. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341812)

I think you may be mixing up Objective C and the frameworks that are part of OSX. Objective C is a programming language. Apple's toolchain uses gcc as the compiler; so no trouble there on Linux.

On the other hand, frameworks like Cocoa and Quartz are OSX-only and not available on Linux.

And then they converted us into pure energy. (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341244)

What ever happened to the new pointing device that Apple was supposed to come out with? I instantly though they were going to strengthen their stance on gaming when the rumors about it started circulating.

Mobile Gaming? (1)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341252)

Forget that. I'd like to see a more serious push from them in the desktop/laptop area so I didn't have to use Bootcamp or VMWare to run games only released for Windows. I'm happy to do that given that I find using OS X and the Mac hardware a very positive experience, but I'd be a bit disappointed if they neglected 'us' and focused solely on the iPhone.

Wouldn't that be funny if . . . (4, Funny)

cashman73 (855518) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341258)

Wouldn't it be hilarious if they finally released Duke Nukem Forever . . . available exclusively on the MacOS platform?!?! ;-)

Sales of Macs would skyrocket! Plus, DNF might actually run!

Re:Wouldn't that be funny if . . . (5, Funny)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341524)

Apple Gaming Platform + Duke Nukem Forever? That sir, is the end of the Universe as we know it.

Re:Wouldn't that be funny if . . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341950)

Wouldn't it be hilarious if they finally released Duke Nukem Forever . . . available exclusively on the MacOS platform?!?! ;-)



Sales of Macs would skyrocket! Plus, DNF might actually run!

Actually it's coming out for the Amiga which was the hot gaming system when they started on DNF

Tied to Apple Hardware (1)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341264)

While there are a lot of iPhone users now, I wouldn't call developing mobile games solely for their own hardware a big "Push Into Gaming". Unless they develop games for all mobile devices (highly impractical) or get mainstream games to run on their mobile hardware (not sure on the feasibility of this), it's going to be very niche.

Re:Tied to Apple Hardware (1)

DaveCBio (659840) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341334)

Exactly. Price wise it's not even in the same ballpark price wise as the DS or even PSP to start. People will buy a few games for their iPhone/Touch, but no one is going to buy one just for games.

Doesn't get much more mainstream than Spore (4, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341496)

Unless they develop games for all mobile devices (highly impractical) or get mainstream games to run on their mobile hardware (not sure on the feasibility of this)

I agree there's no way they are going to have a platform for game development for all platforms. Whay would they? Apple wants to sell Apple platforms.

But Apple is pushing in a very big way for mainstream names to come to the platform. We've already seen demos from Nintendo and from EA, in particular a Spore demonstration. Now those were proof of concepts but it's pretty obvious both parties are interested in extending those relationships into real working games.

Games on the iPhone will be different due to how control schemes have to be altered. But we'll see names from many big players, and games from big franchises.

This may strike people as another nGague, but this time Apple is still focused on the core reasons for owning a device - and also making is useful for gaming, which is I think the right mix for a portable device that is not only a game system. I think it will be more successful than other non-gaming mobile platforms, because it has better support for graphics and control and a really good display for gaming.

Re:Doesn't get much more mainstream than Spore (1)

Dancindan84 (1056246) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341702)

Ok, big name companies/games like that -would- make a difference, but they have to be sure they'll make a profit before they do anything beyond proof of concept. How much money would have to go into Spore to make a production port for the iPhone? From what I know of ports (I helped do some minor alpha/beta testing of the Mac port of A Tale in the Desert http://atitd.com/ [atitd.com] ), there's a lot involved in even a simple project with limited hardware like the iPhone.

Apple had troubles getting big name games/companies to make Mac ports, so I'm hesitant to think they'll all jump on board for iPhone ports when the market there is smaller and the chance for profit slimmer.

Market is huge (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#23342018)

The iPhone market is already in the millions of handsets sold, with a pretty obvious growth path, and the mobile games industry itself is already a proven money maker. The fact that EA and Nintendo were working on prototypes already indicates a lot of interest, and there is clear profit to be made by these companies just by leveraging existing concepts.

I'm not sure the hardware is as limited as you think, it sports a flavor of OpenGL and EA at least simply ported over existing game media to make the prototype they had (as did Nintendo with Monkey Ball).

Mobile ports are totally different than full ports of games to OS X (though EA has already committed to that with a kind of Wine like layer to make it happen).

Re:Tied to Apple Hardware (1)

omeomi (675045) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341550)

or get mainstream games to run on their mobile hardware (not sure on the feasibility of this),

There's a NES emulator for Jailbreak...you can play mainstream games from 1985!

Every time (2)

DaveCBio (659840) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341272)

Apple pushes into gaming they flop. How many times have they promised new tools and support for game devs and come up far, far short? They have no passion for it and you can tell that comes from the top.

"Big Apple" (4, Funny)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341282)

"Theorizing a Big Apple Push Into Gaming"

Phew, I thought New York was going to get into gaming. Had me worried for a new york minute there.

Re:"Big Apple" (1)

Crazy Man on Fire (153457) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341292)

Damn, you beat me to that bad joke.

Re:"Big Apple" (2, Funny)

d34thm0nk3y (653414) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341766)

Phew, I thought New York was going to get into gaming. Had me worried for a new york minute there.

That's funny. I thought New York was trying to get out of video games!

link [arstechnica.com]

hmm.. (1)

Droidism (1285680) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341300)

you just never know what apple will do next...

Oh great (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341306)

A white XBOX, fantastic..

Re:Oh great (1)

Gotung (571984) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341666)

A white XBOX, fantastic..
2004 called it wants it's lame Apple attack back.

The standard color for the xbox 360 is ... white.

Apple has moved on to metal, black and glass for their look.

Not Likely (1)

mpapet (761907) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341312)

Yes, there are mobile phone games, but how big an industry are we talking about?

Think waaay back before they launched the ipod. There were LOTS of mp3 player brands and Apple can control the entire value chain.

In the mobile phone space, they've got the service provider standing in the way ready to put the squeeze on Apple when they start doing well.

Re:Not Likely (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341482)

*points to japan*
Argument over.

Re:Not Likely (1)

omeomi (675045) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341568)

In the mobile phone space, they've got the service provider standing in the way ready to put the squeeze on Apple when they start doing well.

Not at all. iPhone and iTouch games will be distributed via iTunes. They don't have to worry about the service provider at all.

Re:Not Likely (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341606)

Yes, there are mobile phone games, but how big an industry are we talking about?

Already over a few hundred million and growing, and that's on existing phones with tiny screens and poor processors...

Think waaay back before they launched the ipod. There were LOTS of mp3 player brands and Apple can control the entire value chain.

In the mobile phone space, they've got the service provider standing in the way ready to put the squeeze on Apple when they start doing well.


How exactly can "AT&T put the squeeze on"?

If they try, Apple declares the exclusivity broken and opens up the iPhone for any carrier.

Just like the popularity of the iPod gave Apple leverage for ITMS to dictate terms to music companies, so too does the popularity of the iPhone help Apple keep at bay any efforts from the phone company to control them. Apple has ALREADY taken away the ability of the carrier to sell mobile phone apps - Apple is doing it themselves. AT&T may (probably does) get a cut, but it's Apple deciding what that cut is, not AT&T.

iStation, IBox or iWii (1)

freeshoes (826204) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341348)

They should build a console, it will be white, it will look sleek and stylish and the most powerful hardware ever. iPlay!!!

Re:iStation, IBox or iWii (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341440)

Apple being so gay their debut game would be Hello Kitty Adventures.

Re:iStation, IBox or iWii (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341786)

The Wii basically IS an "Apple-style" console already. Nintendo took a cue from Apple's aesthetic design with it.

It's a Good Idea in Theory... (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341458)

Game developers like consoles because of the preset hardware configurations. They don't have to test their work across a wide array of setups like they do on a PC. Apple could definitely provide a similar lure with the Mac.

The Pieces are in Place (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341462)

Apple may not have exhibited much appetite for gaming on the Mac but the i-Phone platform could be very different. The new SDK supports OpenGL ES for 3D graphics (and it's a very capable API standard) as well as OpenAL for 3D audio (which could be very cool on headphones). Add to this the gyro sensor for control and you can expect to see a ton of games being developed with the new SDK...
then look how they adapted the i-phone to a music specific device (iPod Touch) and the concept of an "iPod Play" doesn't seem to far fetched to me.

Ironically (3, Interesting)

JohnnyKnoxville (311956) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341484)

A game that was originally developed for Macs became Microsoft's console's biggest franchise.

Re:Ironically (1)

GameMaster (148118) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341602)

Actually, no. I'm assuming you're referring to Halo, which was, actually, originally developed for the PC. Marathon, I think, is the game you are actually thinking of and that was a separate game. Halo can be thought of as a spiritual sequel to Marathon in the vein of Wasteland/Fallout(or even a direct sequel if Bungie works harder at making the continuity line up) but it isn't the same game.

Re:Ironically (1)

Avenel (603755) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341686)

Actually, Halo was originally going to be released simultaneously on the Mac and PC.

Um, no. (5, Insightful)

rtechie (244489) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341500)

Over the years, Apple has done everything short of spitting in the face of game developers.

Yes, there will be mobile games for the iPhone. I expect to see a Bejeweled port in short order. No, the iPhone will not be the next handheld gaming device a la Nintendo DS, Sony PSP, etc. It's capabilities will be similar to Windows Mobile, with fewer games. All development will be done by third parties who Apple will do nothing to encourage and whom Apple will end up screwing over (because they always screw over the developers). i.e. "We've just released the mandatory iPhone update X, which breaks all 3rd-party apps, and we didn't bother to tell developers this would happen, and no, we won't tell you what we changed to make it easy to fix your apps. We hate you."

Re:Um, yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341676)

But, it would likely not support "Direct X" flavor of the day. It will be OpenGL (GL-ES 2.0, would be my guess). Games on the iPhone? Not likely (you would break the touch-screen) so I would guess a new iPod spin. I would expect easy "tv out" built in, and maybe some other glitz.

All the pieces are there.

But I *don't* expect it to be terribly popular, except for the Apple true believers. Unless, of course, it IS the replacement iPod. Then, I expect it to completely dominate.

Just sayin'

I am very hopeful! (1, Funny)

killmenow (184444) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341520)

Thinking about this, I find I am so excited I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it is the excitement only a true gamer can feel, a gamer at the start of a long journey whose conclusion is uncertain... I hope Apple can elevate the gaming industry. I hope to see Steve Jobs and shake his hand. I hope their new games/systems are as blue as they have been in my dreams.

iHope.

But... Can it play Dark Castle??? (1)

Glowing-Wind (786539) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341558)

Toons running into walls and making silly dizzy noises, ftw!

This might be the time! (1)

snarfies (115214) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341668)

The PC gaming market has shrunken. A LOT. PC (Wintel? Non-Apple? What have you) games are now banished to a corner of any given video game store, rather than dominating it. And the new Apples are using the same hardware as any other computer out there. So now would be a good time to attempt this.

What they need, though, is something killer. Something that makes people sit up and say "OMG must have OSX!" Something GTA4-level wowzers. What would that be? No idea.

Re:This might be the time! (1)

thermian (1267986) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341868)

has it shrunk? Really? You sure it's not just the increase in high street console game sales that make you think that.

Most of my pc game playing friends no longer purchase from shops. Services like Steam, and sites like play.com have made it almost pointless to go into a shop on the high street for the latest games.

yay! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341678)

I can't wait for my controller with only one button.

What? Play games on a toy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341694)

Someone mod Apple down -1 Redundant.

Good source to keep an eye on Mac gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341704)

A great deal of Mac game developers are living at iDevGames (www.idevgames.com). If you want to get a feel for future development of games on the iPhone, this would be the place to hear about it.

LOL Mac Gaymers (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23341758)

Steve Jobs is trying to see how thin he can make his gaming library on the Mac Air!

Simple games or full fledged? (1)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 6 years ago | (#23341876)

If it's simple games, I can see the market not having much of a problem buying them for $5 each or whatever. But if these are full fledged games that will compete with the ones released on DS or PSP, then people might have a problem with not being able to buy them in stores as gifts (buying an iTunes gift card will have the stigma of thoughtlessness that giving cash in a card does), or simply not having physical media to lend or trade on used markets.

id Software games for iPhone (1)

dprice (74762) | more than 6 years ago | (#23342002)

When Doom 4 was announced, I looked at the id Software job postings [idsoftware.com] . Several of the jobs are for mobile game development, including iPhone. It seems many game makers are hopping on the mobile market. Whether that market really takes off remains to be seen.
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