Expect to some some really pretty, graphically rich, 3D Flappy Bird clones soon.
Epic announced today a move that makes the Unreal Engine development kit available to all, at only $19 per month. In a risky move to counter other 3D engines in the mobile space, Unreal Engine 4, launched today, is available to anyone that wants to pay the $19 per month fee. That engine can be used to deny games to both desktop and mobile games. Previously the engine that powers Infinity Blade would cost millions and require a negotiated deal.
Unreal dies require that developers that make money from games developed with The engine, from premium, free to play, or ad supported, to pay a 5% gross license fee.
Very little is known about this new game aside from the fact that it’s going to be turn-based strategy, has to do with one of Games Workshop‘s properties, is the first mobile game to announce the use of the newest Unreal Engine, and is due out in the second quarter of 2015. More details will no doubt be made available over time (I’m crossing my fingers for Death Angel, but that’s really just a pipe dream), so keep an eye on 148Apps for new announcements!
This week at 148Apps.com, writer Carter Dotson reviewed one of the most anticipated iOS games in recent memory – Infinity Blade II. Dotson writes, “Most of what is new here is a modified and extended progression structure. Instead of one path leading to a final boss, where failure means starting over, there are now several of them, with more branching paths to explore. There are 3 different weapon types now: the traditional swords, slow and heavy axes that deal more damage, and speedy dual swords that deal less base damage, but can do double damage once combos are started. The story is more fleshed out, with actual speaking dialogue from characters besides the God King.”
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Released: 2011-12-01 :: Category: Games
Meanwhile, our attention was turned to more artistic matters at GiggleApps, as Amy Solomon reviewed Auryn – Van Gogh and the Sunflowers. Solomon says, “The look of this app is terrific, with illustrations evoking the style that Van Gogh is known for, complete with bold color choices and noticeable use of brush strokes, but maintains a childlike quality that fits well within this storybook. The jazzy music used is also wonderful, relaxing as well as engaging and very enjoyable to listen to even for long periods of time. The narration used here is also quite good. Parents will also like that each spoken word is highlighted red to aid the young children new to the world of reading.”
iPad Only App - Designed for the iPad
Released: 2011-10-22 :: Category: Books
Finally, 148Apps.biz site editor Rob Lefebvre reported on tablet users and their media consumption. LeFebvre writes, “In a study put out by comScore and reported by Fierce Mobile Content and the appside, interested parties can see that the number one use of tablet devices is games, with 67% of surveyed tablet users saying they’ve played a game at least once in the past month, as compared to 49% of smartphone users surveyed. 23% of those surveyed said they’d played a game on their tablet EVERY DAY. That’s a good number.”
That’s our wrap-up for this week. While you’re out getting all of your holiday shopping done, don’t forget to check us out on our Facebook and Twitter feeds to find out the latest and greatest news, reviews and contests. Feliz Navidad!
Fans of Epic’s Unreal Engine have been long trumpeting its praises on the iOS. However, while Infinity Blade has seen widespread acclaim, including a very promising review here on 148Apps, Dungeon Defenders, another game made using the Unreal Engine, hasn’t seen near as much success. One specific issue keyed on in our official review of Dungeon Defenders were the performance lags that occurred when there too many things happening on screen.
Luckily, the iPad 2 has come to our rescue and Dungeon Defenders developer Trendy Entertainment is happy to announce that lag is now a thing of the past. Apparently a perk of developing using the Unreal Engine is that you are by default writing code that is compatible with dual core PCs. This technology can now be applied to the dual cores found in the iPad 2, thereby kicking the prior slowdown to the curb, with minimal effort on their end.
Though I was initially skeptical about this news, as you can see in the video above and all remnants of stuttering have gone the way of the Dodo. I guess this is just one more perk of using the Unreal Engine. Here is to hoping that other developers are taking notes.
Last month we told you that Dungeon Defenders: First Wave would be landing on iOS in the near future, and now it seems the time is officially upon us. Developer Trendy Entertainment has announced that the tower defense/RPG hybrid will be making its App Store debut on December 16th. The game will also be available for PC early next year, and players will be able to port their characters from one version of the game to the other seamlessly.
Perhaps the most interesting detail about Dungeon Defenders is that it’s powered by Epic’s Unreal Engine 3, the same engine which was featured in the recently released Infinity Blade. A key difference however, is that Infinity Blade was handled by Epic itself, while Dungeon Defenders is a third-party affair. So, how well will an outside party handle Epic’s tool set? We’ll find out for ourselves tomorrow.
If console and PC gaming is anything to go on, then this should all work out rather well. Epic has licensed its engine for quite a while in other mediums, and the results have been mostly positive. Developers have enjoyed access to a powerful, yet easy-to-use engine which creates very impressive visuals. The downsides are that after a while a lot of games start to look alike because they’re all made with UE 3, and while outside parties can still make very nice games of their own, Epic knows all the tricks behind their own tools, so they’re the only ones who can truly unlock all the power of Unreal.
Still, it’s a net gain for the industry and we look forward to seeing what Dungeon Defenders can do once it makes its grand debut. We’ve been looking forward to this game for a while now and the wait is finally over. Here’s hoping we’re in for pleasant surprises rather than massive disappointment.
Last month we told you that Epic’s impressive looking Infinity Blade would make its way to iOS devices in time for the holidays. Now we have even more specifics, as Epic has officially announced that the game will be available on all iOS machines on December 9. In case that sounds far off to you for some reason, remember that it’s actually next week.
The action RPG is poised to be one of the most graphically impressive games to come to iOS, considering it’s being powered by Unreal Engine 3. As the studio which created UE 3, Epic is well-versed at getting the most out of the engine, and if early screenshots are any indication, this title is going to be absolutely gorgeous.
It seems we may also have to pay a premium for those tantalizing visuals, as Epic has also announced that Infinity Blade will retail for $5.99. For many iPhone owners there may be a bit of sticker shock associated with such a price, especially considering a lot of perfectly nice looking games sell on the App Store for $0.99. Is this game really going to be worth the money?
While we can’t say for sure if Infinity Blade is worth your money, signs are pointing in a positive direction. The game appears to be polished to an incredible degree, and Epic as a studio is known for their high-quality work in creating compelling gameplay experiences. Past performance may not be an indication of future results, but Infinity Blade really holds a lot of promise. For iPad owners this game is a near no-brainer, as the $5.99 price tag easily falls in line with what they’re used to paying for apps, and may even be considered a bargain in some respects. UPDATE: Our source does indeed say “Universal App” so the screen resolution shouldn’t be an issue. Thanks to Twitter fan @enygmadraco for catching that! The trade-off is that there is no iPad-specific version of Infinity Blade planned, so the pretty visuals may be stretched and lose some resolution if you expand them out to fill the whole iPad screen. But we’ll stop trying to sway you one way or the other, in a week you can decide for yourself.
Epic has officially announced that Infinity Blade, which up until now has been known as Project Sword, will be coming to iOS devices this holiday season. The game is powered by the Unreal Engine, and has been a hot topic of conversation ever since it was teased at Apple’s keynote back in September. Some are expecting this to be the most visually impressive game yet for iOS machines.
Epic also dropped some new gameplay details, giving us our first taste of how the game will play. The company is promising that Infinity Blade will showcase “adrenaline-fueled sword battles and epic boss fights set in the realm of a fully 3D castle.” There will be at least some RPG element to the proceedings, as players will gain experience, build stats and buy new items as they progress through the story. We also know that the final boss is called the God-King, which is either pure awesome or a shining example of how lazy some people have become.
One down note is that the game won’t have multiplayer at launch, but the good news is that it will eventually come as a free update down the road. Since we don’t yet have a firm release date for the game proper we also don’t know when the multiplayer will show up, but we’d guess it will arrive in early 2011. There’s also been no price announced yet for Infinity Blade, but given the production values and development costs it’s likely going to retail for more than $0.99.
You may also want to invest in a convenient charging solution for your iPhone or iPad, as Infinity Blade will most surely be a battery hog. Enjoy playing the game in five minute spurts; that’s likely about all you’re going to manage to get out of something so resource taxing. Let’s just hope your device doesn’t die in the middle of the final fight with the God-King, because that would just be tragic.