×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Apple Racks Up the Gaming Patents

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the one-button-controllers dept.

Patents 245

An anonymous reader writes "Evidence has been growing that Apple is developing a new gaming console. Now, there are some possible details about how a combined media/game console might work, based on patent applications filed by Apple in late 2007 and early 2008. Here is some of what we can look for: having your personal music integrated into a title, a 'natural' gesture multitouch interface, and a single online store that sells games, media, and video."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

245 comments

iHateSoftwarePatents (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846093)

Nuff said.

Re:iHateSoftwarePatents (0, Troll)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846245)

So what? Is is supposed to be cool or should we remember how the summer is coming and how bad is it to stay indoors when we could sweat outside and have sex with real beings instead of wanking with a lame virtual experience?

I hate the idea that so many wankers prefer rock band or guitar hero to the pleasure of actually playing original stuff of their own for real. Have you become that artificial?

What about becoming sane and healthy, then fix your Garbage Patch before it kills you*?

(*not that you'd be missed much, anyway: USians have not invented anything on their own during the last century, even waterboarding was inspired by Japanese officers whom they subsequently executed before denying it to be torture)

Re:iHateSoftwarePatents (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846315)

Nice rant, but you misunderstand. The headline has a typo. The headline should read "Apple Racks up the GAY mingling Patents.

In other worse, Apple wish to enable gay men to have sweaty, bareback, meth-fueled sex. In the real live meatspace! Problem is that the 4 existing heterosexual Apple users would cry discrimination.

Cause someone will bring this up: (5, Insightful)

denttford (579202) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846097)

Apple's other attempt to enter the gaming market. [wikipedia.org]

As much as I dislike their products, if Apple goes after the Wii with stong iTunes and iPhone/Pod integration, as a gaming and convergence device, they could hurt Nintendo. The saturated market isn't an issue when you can lower the standard of definition and quadruple the market space (e.g. the "smartphone" market).
They will probably have to kill Apple TV, though.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846127)

They will probably have to kill Apple TV, though.

I could be wrong here, but I'm under the impression that the Apple TV isn't doing too well anyway.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (5, Insightful)

denttford (579202) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846269)

No, it does better than expected as a niche product [wikipedia.org]. Still, I suspect a PVR+iTunes frontend+Gaming platform with strong iPod tie ins and in HD would sell very well. It would be a major initiative, and I doubt Apple would let a "hobby project" dilute that market.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (4, Interesting)

Moryath (553296) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847357)

One of the most underutilized - but most fun - options on the original Xbox was the ability of certain games (especially the Tony Hawk series) to replace the default "in-game" music with music ripped from CD's. Make a custom CD with your own chosen playlist, drop it on the box, and boom, you had a completely different experience. I couldn't stand half of the crap-rap they put in, for instance, but I could tell it "never play" those songs, and add in, say, a bunch of Frank Sinatra to the list, or pretty much anything else I decided to put in.

I wish more games had that option. It's one thing if you have a cutscene with dedicated music or something, but something else for sports games or games that wind up trying to have a "top 40s" playlist stuck in as an afterthought. I know I, personally, get bored with games quicker if I don't like the music that's being blared.

You'd be wrong (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846973)

As the other poster noted, the sales are actually better than you'd expect for a niche product.

But the thing you are not considering is that many people use mac minis as home theater systems. They are not technically counted as "AppleTV" units but it has the same effect - people buy a lot of media from iTunes, and many use the same FrontRow software (though many others use things like Boxee).

On the contrary, AppleTV would be core (3, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846205)

They will probably have to kill Apple TV, though.

To me it seems pretty clear what they want is to dominate casual gaming the way they are starting to in the handheld space (yes I know they are still a long ways behind Nintendo, but there are a LOT of games targeting the iPhone/Touch now).

In order to do that all that is needed is to add some light gaming abilities and controls to the AppleTV. Perhaps it would not look much like what they have today, but I see AppleTV being the core from which they extend into gaming.

I never did think they would do a console before as I thought it made no sense, but seeing as how almost all the games I purchase on consoles now are online smaller games I can see it working. With other consoles still focusing on larger games as a focus Apple could really sweep up the smaller game category. Heck, all they'd have to do is court all of the indie game competition winners going back a few years and they'd have a hell of a system.

Re:On the contrary, AppleTV would be core (1)

gladish (982899) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847315)

I doubt any of these patents have anything to do with a gaming console. We all read how much money it takes to enter the console gaming market. The console are subsidized, etc. Apple is into big margins not paying you to buy their stuff and make it up later. My guess is that all these patents are just interesting ideas by engineers at apple. Anyone who's worked for a tech company with money knows they pay you to file patents. And every jack-ass in sight is busy cranking them out for that extra few grand every year. Besides, the patents are intentionally vague to make it harder to understand what the fuck they're talking about. Notice how the article starts making assumptions as to what they're actually saying. Proof-in-point, they're supposed to be hard to figure out. This way the patent covers as board of a range as possible, therefore, making it more valuable. As far as the hiring of the gaming execs and chip designers. I don't know, maybe they're there to beef up the hand-held gaming on iphones and ipod touches. That's more likely than a console.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846249)

As much as I dislike their products, if Apple goes after the Wii with stong iTunes and iPhone/Pod integration, as a gaming and convergence device, they could hurt Nintendo.

Uh...yeah, right! I have a feeling I've met the guy who wrote the [$arg] parent post. He's a skinny little fellow who always sits alone at the lunch table and tells himself that he's better than everyone else and doesn't want their miserable company because they're all such sheeple. Then he finishes his lunch and has to pick up his tray off the floor because some total jerk bumps into him and knocks everything down and all those stupid, stupid SHEEPLE laugh like the stupid SHEEPLE they are. Then, on his way to his locker, that cute girl in his geometry class, which he's only repeating this semester because he was so bored in the last class, I mean, good God, the teacher was such a mouth-breathing sheeple moron, but anyway that cute girl smiles at him from across the hall and his heart starts to beat a little faster even though she's standing beside that total douche of a quarterback who's like, such a mouthbreather, I mean, really, people like that should just be neutered at birth, stupid sheeple, but the girl smiles and so he slows down and pushes his glasses up on his nose and waves but then realizes she wasn't smiling at him but at her loud friend behind him, the one with the platinum blonde hair who's a total whore which is why he's never tried to sleep with her and never would, thank you. And so he turns his wave into brushing lint off his Battlestar Galactica t-shirt, which has totally been signed by the whole cast, and goes to his locker and slams it shut and saunters out of the building to go home and write another blog post because this world just totally sucks and is filled with mouth-breathing sheeple and then he masturbates himself to a teary climax and falls asleep in the warm, sticky comfort of his own spooge.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27847159)

...and that's before he gyrates convulsively on his do-ragged, greased-up Yoda doll!

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (1)

pete-wilko (628329) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846259)

It's one thing to be entering the gaming market, and music integration is great. But there's already great games out there like audiosurf which are great fun and do stuff like that.

Apple entering is goodish news as long as they dont start throwing those patents around and screwing the games market for everyone. It would be so crap if indie developers get crushed in the process.

n.b. also amused by the infinite loop of the article linking to a slashdot story...

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846511)

The problem with Apple entering that market: price. One of Nintendo's biggest selling points is their price. If Apple continues with their buy-in-club pricing mentality (and we have no reason to believe that they won't), then I highly doubt Nintendo has much to worry about.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (3, Interesting)

NatasRevol (731260) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846997)

Well, since iPhone sales(4M) are running at about 1/3 of DS sales(12M), I'd say they have a lot to worry about.

http://vgsales.wikia.com/wiki/Nintendo_DS [wikia.com]

iPod Touch sales add a bit more - the other 2/3 of DS sales

~40M iGamingPlatforms.

http://www.macnn.com/articles/09/04/22/apple.ipod.sales/ [macnn.com]

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (2, Insightful)

michael021689 (791941) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847153)

Everyone who buys a DS is playing a game.

Very few people who buy iphones and the like do so for games.

They don't have shit to worry about.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (1)

Xaoswolf (524554) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847191)

That's the handheld market however. The DS is pretty much the only handheld(does the PSP still count?) And the iphone is also a cell phone, so the comparision isn't as good.

The console market has plenty of other consoles to choose from. People looking for a cheap system that is fun will go with the Wii still, hardcore gamers will go for the consoles that have the games on them and a proven track record. Mac cultists will buy anything with an apple on it however. If they release a console, I think it will take some time before it becomes really popular.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (3, Insightful)

Sj0 (472011) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847367)

You guys are about to learn what I learned 10 years ago: Discrete devices work best. A dedicated gaming platform will have better performance, better form factor, and better battery life than a device that's a million things and also a gaming platform. A dedicated music device will have better form factor and better battery life than a device that's a million things and also a music device. A dedicated phone will have better form factor and better battery life than something that's a million things and a phone.

And you know what? When my DS is dead, I'll still be able to call a taxi, and I'll still have 11 hours of music left on my iPod.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846853)

My biggest problem with Nintendo was their resistance to provide the market with sufficient consoles to meet demand. More than once I wanted to buy one on a lark and couldn't. While Apple does not have the best track record for maintaining supply when they have a hot product, Apple has "hip" appeal that Nintendo will never have, resulting in people willing to wait for Apple's supply to meet demand.

Re:Cause someone will bring this up: (1)

Maury Markowitz (452832) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846915)

> They will probably have to kill Apple TV, though.

As an owner ($200 refurb, what the hell) I have to say I'd be fine if they killed it. I'd be happier if they just fixed it though, and it really doesn't need much work.

All it needs is an external DVD player, like the one from the Air, and an external tuner (w/CableCard). Plug them in via the USB2, pass through the video, and suddenly it becomes one bazillion times more useful. I get one little stack, plug it into my TV/monitor on one end and tuner on the other, and everything's done.

Yeah I know, I have broadband, I don't need a DVD - sure, but tell that to my kid. And no matter how fast that broadband gets, there's times when I want to watch Greatest American Hero RIGHT NOW, but then there's times I just want to channel surf. iTunes is great for the former, but will never, ever, be the later. None of the online services are, yet.

Now fix the frigged menus.

Maury

Not Teh Evel!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27847349)

Patents- only evil if Microsoft gets them.

pure speculation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846103)

These patents describe something that sounds an awful lot like the current iPhone and iTunes store. I don't see how you make the leap to iGameboy.

It's a matter of promotion (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846493)

I don't see how you make the leap to iGameboy.

Apple signs exclusivity deals for a few major video game publishers' games that it thinks are good enough to be system sellers for the iPod Touch. Then Apple enters into a co-promotion agreement with the publishers that includes "only on iPhone and iPod Touch" branding in advertisements, just like some DS games' commercials say "only on DS".

Re:pure speculation (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846797)

Nintendo already does most of this. Combination game console, picture sharing, voice communication with anyone in the world, surf the net, buy stuff from their online store, everything organized in "channels", a natural interface that supports gestures, and (until the last update, which removed mp3 support) you could play your own music for some titles. So - Wii combined game/media/internet console FTW.

Apple isn't a game company.

iBox game store? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846117)

Something seems incredibly interesting about the prospect of a game console with an iPhone like app/game store. I could definitely see myself buying one if they do come out, especially if I could easily program my own games for it.

Community Games on Xbox 360 (4, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846525)

Something seems incredibly interesting about the prospect of a game console with an iPhone like app/game store. I could definitely see myself buying one if they do come out, especially if I could easily program my own games for it.

Given that the app store for the iPod Touch uses almost the same business model as the "Community Games" store for the Xbox 360, I'd recommend that you buy an Xbox 360. Like the iPod Touch, the Xbox 360 needs a specific host operating system (Windows) to run the developer tools, and running your code on the console requires a $100/year developer certificate.

Thought we already had an Apple console... (5, Funny)

Bieeanda (961632) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846125)

...in the Xbox 360. It's white, has a circular interface on the front panel, and as Apple considers the iPods, the RROD makes it disposable.

Re:Thought we already had an Apple console... (4, Funny)

Tarlus (1000874) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846765)

Woah... you did NOT just call Apple and Microsoft the same thing... on Slashdot of all places! ;)

Re:Thought we already had an Apple console... (5, Insightful)

ActusReus (1162583) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847071)

Sigh... in the not-so-distant past, when the Slashdot community was oriented around open vs. proprietary discussions, Microsoft and Apple very much WAS considered to occupy the same basic space.

These days Slashdot is all about piracy, fads and rumors in social networking sites, and discussions about marketing. The occasional GPL vs. BSD/MIT/Apache flamewar still sprouts up, but mostly it's just fanboys praising or bad-mouthing various shiny objects on the basis of how "sexy" they are.

Apple sells "better" stuff, Microsoft sells "more" stuff. Other than that, yeah... they are pretty much the same thing.

Re:Thought we already had an Apple console... (3, Insightful)

SailorSpork (1080153) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847433)

Actually, you can also play your own music in games on your Xbox, and Xbox Live has an online store for games and videos. Other than a multi-touch interface (Nintendo DS's turf), what is Apple doing new besides combining these and putting their logo on it?

Xbox 361 (2, Interesting)

steelclash84 (1129221) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846153)

Sounds like an a shiny opengl xbox that will most likely cost more...that will cost money every time they update the firmware. They can't get a very good game support on their PCs, and they intend to get support from developers on this? Highly unlikely...

Re:Xbox 361 (0, Flamebait)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846253)

They can't get a very good game support on their PCs, and they intend to get support from developers on this

And they want all games ported to Objective-C. For fuck's sake Apple, let us use C++ on the iPhone like a good computer company.

Re:Xbox 361 (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846497)

Obviously, you haven't coded for the iPhone...

You can use C++! The user-interface must be programmed with Objective C.

Assuming that you just want an OpenGL view where you can throw in your game graphics, you just need to set up an App delegate, a view controller and a view. One of the standard templates gives you everything you need on the objective C side.

So if you want to do OpenGL and C++ on the iPhone just start!

Re:Xbox 361 (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846901)

Obviously, you haven't coded for the iPhone...

Correct.

You can use C++! The user-interface must be programmed with Objective C.

That's a pretty big hurdle... but not insurmountable

Assuming that you just want an OpenGL view where you can throw in your game graphics, you just need to set up an App delegate, a view controller and a view. One of the standard templates gives you everything you need on the objective C side.

Argh, why do I have to look at a templatein Objective C. Presumably, "fill a window with OpenGL" ought to just be a single call to a library written in Objective C.

Model, view, and controller (2, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846651)

And they want all games ported to Objective-C. For fuck's sake Apple, let us use C++ on the iPhone like a good computer company.

First, separate your game into model, view, and controller components [wikipedia.org]. Physics, AI, and map decoding go in the model so that they're identical across platforms, and anything specific to the iPod Touch goes in the view or controller. There exist bindings between Objective-C and C++ [wikipedia.org], and as an AC pointed out [slashdot.org], only part of the view and controller need to be written in Objective-C.

XNA on Xbox 360, on the other hand, needs games to be ported to the CLR. At first glance, this would be a deeper rewrite, as I've read that a lot of C++ code doesn't map cleanly onto verifiably type-safe C++/CLI constructs.

Re:Model, view, and controller (4, Insightful)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846857)

First, separate your game into model, view, and controller components

It's not that simple. The view is pretty complex in games. The controller has to include networking, file i/o, actually controller input and mapping to a unique internal method.

Physics, AI, and map decoding go in the model so that they're identical across platforms

Nice if true, but it's not. Different chipsets (x64, x86 and PowerPC) all require tweaks to the underlying math libraries to optimize performance. Sometimes those tweaks propogate up.

only part of the view and controller need to be written in Objective-C.

Without knowing exactly the dividing line, I can say that those components are pretty complicated. So why should we have to use Objective-C at all? Why should I have to have some other language anywhere in my build?

XNA on Xbox 360, on the other hand, needs games to be ported to the CLR.

XNA is optional. Objective-C is manditory.

They already do all this (1)

Captain Spam (66120) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846163)

Here is some what we can look for: having your personal music integrated into a title, a 'natural' gesture multitouch interface, and a single online store that sells games, media, and video.

So... they're just claiming patents on the iPhone and iPod Touch?

Re:They already do all this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846589)

My thought exactly.

Deep thinking I know...

Re:They already do all this (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846949)

Exactly. The article summary is dumb. "Evidence has been growing that Apple is developing a new gaming console." Uh, no, it hasn't. If anything, the evidence just says Apple is adding new app/game features on the iPhone and iPod.

Ooh.. another "consumer" device. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846171)

It's like receiving a puppy as a gift, except without the warm wet kisses. It just costs, and costs, and costs..

Patent a store? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846177)

Does anyone else have a problem with trying to patent a "single online store that sells games, media, and video?"

I mean, c'mon...

Re:Patent a store? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846419)

Does anyone else have a problem with trying to patent a "single online store that sells games, media, and video?"
I mean, c'mon...


No kidding. I thought Amazon already had this patent.

Integrating your personal music into the game? (4, Insightful)

b96miata (620163) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846183)

Sounds like something the 360 does right now.

Maybe the patent covers a system whereby you're forced to pay the console maker for the music you want to integrate.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (2, Insightful)

Spatial (1235392) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846507)

And the PS3 and some PSP games. But like all Slashdot summaries about patents, it probably left out some specific to make it sound more stupid than it actually is.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (1)

rotor (82928) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846633)

I've always been happy to just play the stereo while I'm gaming.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846713)

I've always been happy to just play the stereo while I'm gaming.

That would work if you can turn off the game's music, and if you can set up your stereo to mix the Xbox 360 and music source so that you don't miss world cues that the game presents through sound effects. I doubt that the median console owner can figure out the latter.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846719)

In GTA: Vice City (released for Windows in 2003), and maybe earlier ones too, you could copy any MP3s you want into a folder in the game directory structure and play them through a station on the in-game car radio.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847295)

Yeah, doesn't seem novel. In GTA: Liberty City Stories for PSP there was this ability too - if you could find the tool to convert stuff to the right format.

Re:Integrating your personal music into the game? (1)

MROD (101561) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847171)

Oolite (the Elite re-implementation, http://oolite.org/) already allows you to use your iTunes database for docking music and has done so for many years.

Simpler Suggestion (1)

cabjf (710106) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846189)

Perhaps they are planning to offer these types of features in their current iPhone/iPod Touch products? Then allow developers access to the framework in some future firmware update? They could also be planning to move games into their own section on iTunes, as they are selling better than other apps. Most of this stuff already fits their existing hardware anyhow, so I'm not seeing how this leads to a new gaming console.

Re:Simpler Suggestion (1)

alfredo (18243) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846239)

There's also rumors about a Kindle style device. Think of a full color Kindle with the features of the iPhone.

Single-Source media (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846203)

"single online store that sells games, media, and video"

Don't we already have more than enough single-source media (that can't be acquired by other means). Just what we need -- more.

m0d do3n (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846215)

frist po$t

Re:m0d do3n (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27847285)

you need to get rid of that iphone dude - nasty lag you got there

Does it even need new hardware? (5, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846223)

All of the stuff mentioned there could apply equally well to the iPhone and iPod Touch, which Apple have been positioning as proper gaming devices anyway.

Re:Does it even need new hardware? (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846959)

But that wouldn't generate stupid Apple rumors with no basis in reality.

Uhhh... (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846237)

Sounds like patents for games on the iphone and ipod. Am I missing something? Or maybe something like a media center. Hell my DVD player came with 2 games. That does NOT make it a console.

iPhone? (1)

Val314 (219766) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846311)

"having your personal music integrated into a title, a 'natural' gesture multitouch interface, and a single online store that sells games, media, and video.""

sure sounds like the iPhone/iPod touch with the iTunes Store, doesn't it?

I doubt that they will make a "Apple iWii"

Re:iPhone? (1)

V!NCENT (1105021) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846963)

I doubt that they will make a "Apple iWii"

An Apple iWhy? I don't know HOW they do it, but they just keep on surprising me with their intuitive design!

"It's a total waste of your monÃh; the iWhy? Never again was it so easy to just ask yourself why the hell you paid for the latest incarnation from Apple... again! Something ofcourse that's not so easy for the PC, but to hell with it! PC's suck at everything and not just at wasting time alone. Redmond start your photocopiers! Oh it was actually a joke but they took it quite seriously. Let's have a look at Windows 7. Dell even copied the expensive pricetag, but they didn't did that quite well".

Without buttons its worthless (2)

grapeape (137008) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846411)

While things work fine for the casual market, for deeper and more complex games that the hardcore crowd will actually want they are going to have to add some buttons. Though its great not having a stylus to loose, the type of screen the current iPhone and Touch use is simply not accurate enough for heavy gaming. The gyros are nice but games that use them are mostly a one trick pony so far. I know Apple is all about slick and elegant but practical would do them alot of good. I'd love to see the iPhone/Touch as a viable gaming platfom, its specs are better than any handheld on the market but its interface cripples it.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

dogzilla (83896) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846491)

Except that the hardcore gaming market is tiny compared to the casual gaming market. So if you want to, you know, actually earn money instead of bragging rights, this isn't much of an issue.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846655)

Yes but except for few exceptions like Wii Fit, casual gaming market is heavily fractured. And you'll have to sell 3-5 copies of it to match the sale of a 1 hardcore game.

Doing the math that's a pretty good deal (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846769)

Yes but except for few exceptions like Wii Fit, casual gaming market is heavily fractured.

That's a developer issue, not a hardware issue...

And you'll have to sell 3-5 copies of it to match the sale of a 1 hardcore game.

You're only talking price per copy, but you ignore you must also spend about 100x the initial amount of money for graphics and level design in any "hardcore" game today.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

RiotingPacifist (1228016) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847483)

Except that gamers, will pay £30-40 for a game and will keep coming back for more [gamasutra.com]. So not only do you need to ship 3x as many copies in a much more saturated market, but you also don't have a userbase ready to buy v2,3,4 at the drop of a pin.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (2, Insightful)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846691)

Lots of people claimed that the Wii would fail because it's graphics weren't adequate for what hardcore gamers wanted. Nintendo proved them wrong.

I'm just sayin'.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

shdowhawk (940841) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846803)

These are estimated costs from the Gamestop [gamestop.com] Website.

Sony PSP: $170 ($120 refurbed)
Nintendo DS: $170 ($80 refurbed)
Nintendo Wii: $250

Apple Touch 8G: $229
32G: $399

Apples Potential Strategy:
1. Alter the touch to add an up/down/left/right and A, B button (10 extra bucks from a manufacturing standpoint!? I'm pulling this number out of my ass... but adding something that simple and mass producing can't be expensive)
2. Release the 16gig as the new 8gig ($225... maybe bring it down down $199 to combat current systems)
3. Now hardcores get what they want, wii crowd gets a portable wii like system
4. Introduce a massive new crowd to the iTunes store who might not have used it before
5. Massive profit

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

Millennium (2451) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847045)

Depth and complexity are entirely different things, and the attempt to tie them together has driven more people away from gaming than quite possibly any other aspect of the downhill slide gaming has suffered from over the last ten years.

Depth is good, but can and should be achieved without gratuitous complexity. Fortunately, it's been done many times throughout the history of gaming, video and otherwise, so there are plenty of examples from which one can draw inspiration. It's just a matter of letting go of the ridiculous idea that learning the basic moves of a game should take more than five minutes.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

mdarksbane (587589) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847463)

I'd say it is more that some players enjoy the greater complexity, and many of those players are the sorts of people who go into game development.

Some people get a big mental reward from being presented with a difficult thing, mastering it, and then using it. It's like racing with an automatic versus a stick. Automatic drivers would be people like you, who want to enjoy the depth of driving without having to master complex controls to do it (put gas to go, point car at destination - then let the course provide the difficulty). Whereas people who prefer a stick enjoy having the extra control, and honestly even the extra complexity that it requires.

There's a market for both people. The problem is that generally the more one gets into a hobby, the more one becomes the second group. How many racers prefer an automatic, versus how many drivers? Not many. And the people who play games all the time (and are looking for more complexity and control) are the ones making the games.

Re:Without buttons its worthless (1)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847451)

Consider dual wielding two Wii-like controllers, and give them buttons as well. Your swinging becomes the blades of your toon, your left thumb button becomes movement, right thumb button jump. A trigger on one hand becomes the camera and a trigger on the other has special contextual functions.

You become a dual-wielding jedi knight -- just move your mom's vase out of the room.

Online store...that's original. (0, Redundant)

rwrife (712064) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846413)

An online store that sells music, movies, games, etc....sounds like XBox Live.

Re:Online store...that's original. (1)

BlueKitties (1541613) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846677)

To be fair, online stores seem like a fairly obvious and natural progression for entertainment consoles.

The Laptop Wheel is a Reality (2, Funny)

Audiophyle (593650) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846437)

The controller has already been released! [theonion.com]

Re:The Laptop Wheel is a Reality (1)

Icegryphon (715550) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847417)

The first time I saw that about a month ago I nearly passed out from laughter.
"I'll Buy Anything As Long As It's Shiny and Made By Apple"
The very best satirical pieces are those that are so close to the truth you can almost believe it.
Something that is sadly missing in this day and age.

A buzzkiller msg... (0)

cooperaaaron (897474) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846439)

Just leave Apple alone. Too much focus on them now. Who has the money to pay for all of this new stuff, when the economy has just bottomed out ?

Re:A buzzkiller msg... (1)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846565)

Too much focus on them now. Who has the money to pay for all of this new stuff, when the economy has just bottomed out ?

I do, I'm rich! Screw you plebes, I'm getting a gold-plated Pippin! Seriously though, I don't think Apple is seriously going into the gaming market. They just want the iPhone/App store combo to challenge the DS. They want 3rd party support, and buying EA for that would be like swatting a fly with a Gatling gun.

Re:A buzzkiller msg... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846807)

That's retarded, EA is irrelevant to handheld.
They were better off buying Eidos instead

Games != Windows :-D (2, Interesting)

starglider29a (719559) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846537)

Many people [citation needed] use Windows solely because it's how they play their games. With the excuse of "I can't play cool games on a Mac" gone, those "slaves to the game" Windows users will have no excuse, and will switch to Mac.

Re:Games != Windows :-D (1)

space_jake (687452) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846775)

Unlikely, in the real world developers will be split on platform lines and exclusives will abound.

Re:Games != Windows :-D (1)

TheSambassador (1134253) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846819)

Except that absolutely isn't the only reason PC gamers don't use Macs.

Macs are overpriced for the components they have and are almost completely uncustomizable. Obviously the very similar hardware that they all run on is good for the average user who just wants to play a simple game, but for actual gamers it's not as good.

When I can build a Mac from scratch and not have to spend a bazillion dollars on everything, I'll CONSIDER switching... until then the PC gives me the customizability that I want.

Re:Games != Windows :-D (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847271)

"Macs are overpriced for the components they have "
this has been shown to not be true many times.

"e and are almost completely uncustomizable. "
most people don't customize there PC.

"...but for actual gamers it's not as good. "

no, it's better.

BTW, must hard core gamers don't customize their PC anymore either. It's pretty pointless these days.

"When I can build a Mac from scratch..."

you're becoming a niche user. Very few people want to do that. maybe .001% of all people with a PC want to do that.

Good luck buying equivalent parts for less.

Of, and most importantly. If you were truly and hard core gamers, and you new shit about computers, you would WANT OSX to run games because they will run better do to how it manages memory and devices. You get more performance out of a slower chip.

Re:Games != Windows :-D (2, Informative)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846905)

Being able to play a game on an iPhone or Apple game console isn't exactly the same thing as sitting down in front of my computer and playing the games I want to play.

It doesn't matter if I can play specific games on Apple hardware, what matters is if I can play the games I want to play. Right now I'm into things like Team Fortress 2 and Far Cry 2, and hopefully Empire: Total War once they get the bugs out. If I can't play TF2 or whatever else I specifically want to play, then it doesn't matter what other games they have available.

Macs have always had games available, they just haven't been the games I want to play. I'm not looking for the next Marathon or Oregon Trail sequel, I'm looking for the games I know I want to play.

Also, for the record, my "excuse" for using Windows instead of anything with an Apple logo on it is because I actually *prefer* Windows to Mac, and frankly, within the past year or two I actually have gotten a better opinion of Microsoft over Apple (or, more specifically, my opinion of Apple as a company has shot way, way down). It's not like a Mac is some obviously superior piece of equipment, where the only reason I would possibly use anything else is because the Mac doesn't support what I'm looking for. The reason I don't use Macs is because I prefer Windows XP, bottom line, XP has done everything I need an OS to do for the past 8 years, and at this point it's extremely stable. I've also built all of my own computers for the past 10 years, if I can't build my own Mac then I can stop looking right there. I know what hardware I want, I don't need Apple to tell me. The same goes for Linux machines I build myself, I just happen to prefer XP over most distros I've seen also.

Re:Games != Windows :-D (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847203)

Except money.

Fact of the matter is there are a lot of low end PC's and very few low end Macs

I can play any game out right now on a 500 dollar PC. not the highest settings, but more then enough to be playable.

Is the look, style and over all quality the same? no. But when comparing 500 dollars to 1000 dollars many people will live with the difference.

Handhelds only (3, Interesting)

jigoman (853944) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846625)

I think convergence is what's is prompting this. Imagine making the iPhone/iPod Touch a portable gaming console. Remember when we used to carry a cell phone, iPod and DS? Millions of you already have Apple's gaming device in your hand. I can't see any sense in Apple coming out with a dedicated gaming device.

Also, I was browsing the AppStore last night and noticed a couple of games that were previously only on the Nintendo DS (Cooking Mama being one). The graphics/gameplay were identical if not better.

Audiosurf? (1)

Lunatrik (1136121) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846685)

Seems like integrating private music collections into a game would be prior art.. Audiosurf comes to mind, but I am sure there are plenty of others I am omitting...

I, for one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846707)

...Welcome the iBox. Game Different. ...For 999 US dollars.

Mind Blowing! (1)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846741)

Your music could get integrated into the game environment.

It would totally rock to play games incorporating music by my favorite artists like Yasunori Mitsuda, Koji Kondo, and Nobuo Uematsu!

Gyros might acutally help (1)

silverpig (814884) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846767)

Does this mean when I'm late on a corner in a racing game that turning the controller hard into the turn, shaking it up and down, and leaning my body to the right might actually work?!

How about a nice multitouch keyboard? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27846879)

No, I'm not bitter at all about Apple chewing through companies and scavenging their tech for nothing but shiny toys.

It is sad how much potential is squandered by Apple. It is probably too much to hope that that egotistical megalomaniac Jobs be replaced by a true visionary though.

No Pippin 2.0 (2, Insightful)

Millennium (2451) | more than 4 years ago | (#27846995)

After the disaster that was Pippin, I very much doubt that Apple will be going into that business again. Steve Jobs' animosity toward computer gaming is well-documented, and it is unlikely that he would about-face on something like this, as he would have to have done back when this project started.

More likely, this is an extension of the Apple TV into a more full-fledged set-top PC. Jobs hates games, but he's learned the hard way that games sell computers, so of course he's going to have Apple put some thought into the interface. But this will not be marketed as a game console, and ultimately it will not compete with game consoles.

On the other hand, it's good to see that they're leaning towards Wiimote-like gesture-based control as opposed to 1:1 motion mapping. It's the best of both worlds: the abstraction of buttons alongside the immersion of motion.

Apple looking at EA? (4, Interesting)

Phroggy (441) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847017)

I was about to dismiss it as unsubstantiated speculation, but I just saw an article claiming that Apple may want to acquire EA [tgdaily.com]. That would fit in VERY nicely with designing their own game console, which I imagine would replace AppleTV.

Wow. Apple buying Twitter would be silly, but Apple buying EA could totally change the landscape.

What the Shit (1)

hoooocheymomma (1020927) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847097)

You can patent "a single online store that sells games, media, and video"?????

Help me out here. How the hell is this something that needs to be patented? Selling shit at a store seems like a pretty easily conceived/implemented idea. I'm pretty sure Amazon is doing this already.

Microsoft already did it. (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847169)

having your personal music integrated into a title,

Xbox had this. Xbox360 requires it.

a 'natural' gesture multitouch interface

Maybe.

and a single online store that sells games, media, and video.

Xbox Marketplace.

Overpriced and underpowered (1)

gnesterenko (1457631) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847179)

Just my prediction, going by all other Apple products, this Console will likely fetch a PS3 like price, will have, at best, Wii like capabilities, with the addition of iTunes/iPod integration. Considering my PC is hooked up to the same entertainment center as my Wii, a big YAWN from my end. I'm sure there's a casual gaming market out there that they can try to leech off, but honestly, I'd invest about zero dollars into this. Lets not forget that Apple is a company that has very basic at best gaming experience on their PCs, let alone their hand-helds - as opposed to Nintendo that has been game oriented for what 20 years now? More even? Good luck to apple and all. I will never get any mp3 player other then the iPod, but I would not touch their PCs/laptops with a 10 foot pole. Will keep an open mind about a console to give it a fair chance, but honestly, at this point, what the market needs is a PS3/Wii hybrid - computing/graphical power of a PS3 with the user-friendliness and fun/party factor of the Wii would destroy all competition. If Apple can do this, I'm sold. But as I've said, historically at least, Apple uses sub-par hardware which ultimately results in sub-par performance. If its priced high, it better have the graphical processing power of the PS3 or better and full HD output. But prove me wrong, Apple. I'd love to see real competition to the PS3 to force the prices down some, so I can actually justify purchasing one. "The views expressed here are mine and do not reflect the official opinion of my employer or the organization through which the Internet was accessed."

yipee! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#27847205)

yippee more icrap from the masters of marketing!

well, you can put that with the others, where the sun don't shine.

transgaming vs directx? :P (1)

janopdm (1292860) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847307)

Boosting gaming on the iPhone (or a possible mediapad) makes sense because 1) it is the primary source of earnings for Apple, and 2) phones are getting good enough to work as handheld consoles. However, Apple lacks hardware or software expertise to go nuclear against XBox and DirectX, Wii, or Playstation with a new gaming console.

Me, Me, Me (1)

KidPix (1512501) | more than 4 years ago | (#27847403)

The game plays my music! The hero has my face and looks just like me! The characters are saying things I recorded! It's my voice! Me! The game! Me!!

This article does a lot to hype up a non-existent niche that Apple may or may not be going into. Despite the author's tone, narcissistic gaming is not a revolution.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...