Epic to leverage their 3D engine…

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    Posted: 01 December 2010 11:23 AM

    I missed this yesterday:

    Epic Games to release Unreal Development Kit for iOS
    Posted on Nov 30, 2010 2:30 pm by David Dahlquist, Macworld.com

    Epic Games, the creator of the widely-used Unreal 3 game engine, is gearing up to release its Unreal Development Kit (UDK) for iOS, which will give iOS game developers unrestricted access to powerful 3D game development tools.

    The UDK is Epic’s free version of the Unreal Engine, a powerful game engine that has been used to power such graphically intensive titles as Gears of War and Epic Citadel (pictured)?the latter of which has already been released for iOS as a demonstration of the Unreal Engine 3’s performance on the platform.

    When it ships, the UDK iOS will include the same editors and code used to create a number of blockbuster games, and will be available to anyone wishing to publish games via the App Store. Toolsets of this quality generally cost developers anywhere from $500 to tens of thousands of dollars, so by releasing the UDK for free, Epic is drastically lowering the barrier of entry for iOS developers wishing to create graphically impressive games.

    As it readies the UDK iOS for launch, Epic will be releasing content and tutorials to the developer community. Though there’s no release date just yet, once released, the UDK stands to make a significant impact on the mobile gaming landscape.




  • Posted: 02 December 2010 10:54 AM #1

    This is an interesting development and may fuel growth in iOS-based games. I’ll be watching for the games to be delivered over the next year.

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    Posted: 02 December 2010 10:58 AM #2

    DawnTreader - 02 December 2010 02:54 PM

    This is an interesting development and may fuel growth in iOS-based games. I’ll be watching for the games to be delivered over the next year.

    Actually I am hoping it will actually drive OSX games… Once the developers are using the tools it should be relatively easy to step up to OSX.


    By giving away the tools for iOS then Epic are increasing the talent pool of developers for their SDK… There are a lot of young talented people out there that couldn’t have afforded the dev tools at the higher price that it commanded. Fire up some ideas, earn some money from the iOS games and then invest that money so you can climb up the food chain.



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    Posted: 02 December 2010 11:08 AM #3

    Ars Technica did an interview with John Carmack on future mobile gaming

    JC: That’s something we spend a lot of time thinking and talking about?how we want to scope the games. There is no doubt from a raw horsepower standpoint that you can do a triple-A game on there. You’re somewhat limited by the maximum download size, which is 2GB?that’s a fraction of a DVD. So you’re limited by total initial size, although you could theoretically download as much [additional content] as you want to; there’s going to be some limit where people don’t want to download 10GB of data. Much of what makes a modern, triple-A title is the media that goes into it.

    Half of the reason for us ditching the old feature phones was that it was so much more pleasant to develop for iOS. And I fear that we would be slipping back into some of that quagmire on the Android side of things.
    But still, on a raw hardware level, it’s definitely possible to do that. And there’s a vocal fraction of the consumer crowd on the iDevices that really wants the devices to be the successor to the PSP or DS?they want it to be a gaming machine. You’re somewhat hampered by the touch interface?there’s a lot of places where tactile controls really are better?but you can definitely do a lot.

    JC: In terms of capability, because you’ve got on both platforms fragment shaders, vertex shaders, and a competent enough 32-bit CPU, it does come down to more or less raw performance. I haven’t done any direct benchmarks pitting the 3-something GHz clocked, very much in-order, highly pipelined 360 or PS3 CPUs vs. the somewhat-more-flexible but lower clocked ARM processors, but they’re certainly within a factor of two of each other in terms of performance. But you have three of those cores [in the 360] with two threads each, so you’ve got at least a factor of four?if not ten?difference in CPU power, and at least the same order of magnitude difference on the graphics performance. You can still pretty easily hit your fillrate limits on the iOS devices, while you can pile up a whole lot of layers on the current consoles.

    So it’s probably fair to say that the iOS devices are better than the previous-generation consoles. You could pick poster-child optimization cases where any given platform is going to be better, but in terms of just saying, “what’s the best game you can make with this,” I could certainly make a better game given the same amount of development resources on an iOS device than on anything in the previous console generation?the original Xbox or the PS2. But, conversely, the current generation of consoles is quite significantly more powerful than what you can do on iOS. Of course, how much that actually turns into better gameplay and design is certainly open for some discussion.

    Whether the iOS devices will reach that same level of performance before the next console generation ships is quite an interesting question. There are some very different designs for power consumption considerations that go into their hardware design, and cranking things up to give that level of power but gets burning hot in your hands and uses up the battery in 30 minutes is absolutely possible with the form factor right now, but it’s probably not the right decision from the standpoint of what the device really is and is supposed to be. But even at the same power draw, they’re going to be doubling and doubling again the performance level.

  • Posted: 02 December 2010 01:41 PM #4

    The ability to bring compelling game implementations to iOS-based devices is a big advantage for Apple. Obviously the iPod touch is being marketed as a world-class handheld gaming device. The Apple iPad is a whole new opportunity due to its larger form. I see development progressing over the next few years. There’s a big future for the iPad and gaming is one avenue of opportunity.