The Mobile Phone Section

Want to air your opinions on the latest issue of Retro Gamer? Step inside...

Moderators: mknott, NickThorpe, lcarlson, Darran@Retro Gamer, MMohammed

User avatar
djcarlos
Posts: 4198
Joined: Thu Dec 07, 2006 5:57 am
Location: Just outside the Imperial Capital Of Seaford

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by djcarlos » Wed Mar 25, 2009 5:58 am

The iPhone is set to become the dominant gaming platform because of connectivity and the strength of the App Store, I have heard.

The claim was made by iPhone developer Neil Young of Ngmoco at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, which I went to.

Mr Young told the me that the iPhone and the iPod Touch boasts 30 million users usurping Nintendo's DS or Sony's PSP at a similar point in their lives.

"As a game device, the iPhone has revolutionised the market," he said.

Since its debut last year, the App Store has seen more than 800 million downloads with gaming being the most popular category.

"If you looked at the top 100 apps today, you would see 60% are games. That creates an incredible opportunity for game makers," he told me.

In his talked entitled Why The iPhone Just Changed Everything, Mr Young urged developers to make full use of the iPhone's unique features to create games that users will love.

"Don't let the haters tell you it sucks compared to the DS or the PSP," he told a packed audience of developers, industry watchers, analysts and journalists and me.

"It doesn't. It's good. It's clear the quality of iPhone games is eclipsing its console counterparts, and that's even more acute when you compare it against the prior generation."

As the producer of games like "Rolando" and "Word Fu", Mr Young said the iPhone's unique features like "multi-touch, an accelerometer for control, access to your media, a camera and the fact it is always on, always with you and always connected to the network means we can do games we have never seen on mobile devices."

As well as being something of an evangelist for the iPhone, Mr Young also issued a rallying cry to developers to develop for the device.

Quoting the actor Sean Penn portraying gay rights activist Harvey Milk in the movie Milk, Mr Young told the audience: "I'm here to recruit you."

"I want these developers to not be mobile game developers but for them to make games for this wonderful device which is a game machine that just happens to make telephone calls," Mr Young declared.

That sentiment was echoed by Rob Tercek, the founding chairman of GDC Mobile and president of digital media for OWN: the Oprah Winfrey Network.

"We finally have a phone that is truly a platform for gaming," he told me.

"You need an easy way for people to browse and discover and share and the iPhone has done a good job of that. I don't think it is a perfect job because if you browse the App Store it is actually quite cumbersome.

"But it's much better than what went before and that holds the promise of better things to come," said Mr Tercek.

Mr Young believes Apple's release in the summer of the new iPhone 3.0 software will take mobile gaming to the next level. In a sneak preview to press and developers last week, Apple showed off the new operating system which will allow peer-to-peer applications and some voice-over-IP ability.

While Mr Young touted the virtues of the iPhone as a gaming platform, he also admitted that getting a new game noticed in the App Store can be tough going.

"First you have to make something good with broad appeal and native to the device and showcase what it has to offer."

The next steps are simple and obvious, he said.

"Manage a community, maintain an active blog and a tight relationship with any followers."

Mr Young also revealed that later in the year he has plans for his company to partner with a select number of developers to "help them promote their software above the noise."

For the foreseeable future he said Ngmoco will only make games for the iPhone, although he is not ruling out changing that stance in future..

"We founded the company because we believe this device was representative of a big inflection point in the industry.

"I have had the opportunity to watch, participate and be a customer in all those great inflection points like the Atari VCS or the NES or PlayStation One or Xbox LIVE or Gameboy; this is one of those moments."

"If someone comes along with another device that matches that, I'd certainly take a look but right now that feels a long way away.

"We are the centre of the new everything, the iPhone has revolutionised everything," concluded Mr Young.
Image

User avatar
Timothy Lumsden
Posts: 2994
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2008 5:07 am

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by Timothy Lumsden » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:02 am

The last iPhone game I tried on my friends phone involved wrapping a piece of yarn around a log...seriously...maybe it was developed by hyper intelligent kittens. My friend is a real gadget man, more than an actual gamer. If tech demos pretending to be games are your bag, then go ahead world and buy iPhones.

User avatar
MikeHaggar
Posts: 4787
Joined: Sat Nov 25, 2006 6:02 pm
Location: Norway
Contact:

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by MikeHaggar » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:05 am

djcarlos wrote:The claim was made by iPhone developer Neil Young of Ngmoco

For the foreseeable future he said Ngmoco will only make games for the iPhone

"We founded the company because we believe this device was representative of a big inflection point in the industry."
What would one expect him to say though ;)

User avatar
hydr0x
Posts: 2164
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:31 pm
Location: Germany

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by hydr0x » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:49 am

MikeHaggar wrote:
djcarlos wrote:The claim was made by iPhone developer Neil Young of Ngmoco

For the foreseeable future he said Ngmoco will only make games for the iPhone

"We founded the company because we believe this device was representative of a big inflection point in the industry."
What would one expect him to say though ;)
Plus, he's mistaking downloaded/bought games with actual playtime. I've got a few colleagues with iPhones, one of them is a total retro nut. They all have dozens of games for it but when I ask them what they actually play or how much they play i get answers that make me ask them why they even paid for the game then?! Also, those who have a PSP or DS play on those a lot more. I know this isn't representative but it makes you wonder how big that gaming community really is...
Image

User avatar
FatTrucker
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:23 pm
Location: Essex

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by FatTrucker » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:57 am

SirClive wrote:
Antiriad2097 wrote:I'm ok with mobile games in the mag, but I don't think they warrant a regular section of their own.

Give us reviews highlighting what's worth playing acros a range of platforms, mix it up with other systems.

If it must be a dedicated section, it should be a cross platform handheld one, not a specific mobile one. Throw them in among the PSP, DS, GP2X etc.
I completely agree with Ant there. I think this whole debate could have been avoided by not badging the reviews sections. I have never been a fan of the 'psp reviews issue' or the 'xbla reviews issue'. I think every month should cover the games that are around that month and not just focus on specific systems. I like the more random approach.
Yep, I completely agree, have a section for modern hardware and/or releases and review titles on their merits as retro titles regardless of whichever system they are released on, so at least then the content remains broadly in line with the rest of the content in the mag.

That way if there are any must have iphone retro style games released they can get the coverage they deserve. That's not to say it would be any better to remove the dedicated mobile phone section heading and still make a point of shoehorning 2 pages of crap mobile games into the section every month. Keep it relevant, review titles that are consistent with the rest of the mag, keep the number of pages dedicated to modern stuff proportional......simples.

Mobile games whether that be on the iphone or other mobile phone devices remain very limited in both application and quality. Maybe multi-functional media devices like the iphone will become a prominent force in the future but for the time being at least, they aren't particularly good games platforms, they don't stand up as a dedicated gaming device when compared to dedicated gaming devices and regardless what people involved with that particular part of the industry might have you believe, it seems highly unlikely any gamer in their right mind would buy one primarily for games instead of a handheld like a DS or PSP. 30 million users doesn't equate to 30 million gamers, unlike a DS or PSP where a developer knows that anyone owning the device is buying games, with the iphone a more fair and accurate benchmark would reflect the number of users actively buying games from the app store on a regular basis - if its more than 10% I would be very surprised.
It's clear the quality of iPhone games is eclipsing its console counterparts, and that's even more acute when you compare it against the prior generation
Mr Young really should be charged with something or at the very least committed for such exuberant, over exaggerated, nonsensical statements. Too many blue smarties methinks.
Darran@Retro Gamer wrote:I've played all the Bratz games and Barbia Horse Adventures, due to having two girls and they are not rubbish in the slightest.
Feel free to add me on XBL.
Image

User avatar
khisanth
Posts: 567
Joined: Thu Feb 02, 2006 7:40 am
Location: Hampshire, England
Contact:

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by khisanth » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:48 am

i love my iPhone for playing games and really enjoy the updated retro games. Dropship for example is a superbly retro looking and sounding Thrust clone that is superb on the iPhone.

Someone said the iPhone is a rubbish games console earlier in the thread. Well I play games on my iPhone far more than I do on my Nintendo DS! The best console is the one you play most.

i dont mind an occasional one system only review section every once in a while, grouping the best retro or retro remade games for that system at the time.
Image

User avatar
FatTrucker
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:23 pm
Location: Essex

Re: The Mobile Phone Section

Post by FatTrucker » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:56 am

I've changed the thread title as the thread is now more about having a dedicated section for mobile phones than the relative pro's and con's of the iphone specifically - although I'm still not convinced that its a viable alternative to a dedicated handheld. The fact it might have a few decent viable games that suit its peculiar brand of controls doesn't validate it as a 'games machine'.
Darran@Retro Gamer wrote:I've played all the Bratz games and Barbia Horse Adventures, due to having two girls and they are not rubbish in the slightest.
Feel free to add me on XBL.
Image

User avatar
hydr0x
Posts: 2164
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 1:31 pm
Location: Germany

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by hydr0x » Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:24 pm

khisanth wrote:i dont mind an occasional one system only review section every once in a while, grouping the best retro or retro remade games for that system at the time.
Oh but Darran introduced this as a regular section from now on.
Image

User avatar
FatTrucker
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:23 pm
Location: Essex

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by FatTrucker » Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:25 pm

hydr0x wrote:
khisanth wrote:i dont mind an occasional one system only review section every once in a while, grouping the best retro or retro remade games for that system at the time.
Oh but Darran introduced this as a regular section from now on.
I get the impression it was more of a committee led decision.
Darran@Retro Gamer wrote:I've played all the Bratz games and Barbia Horse Adventures, due to having two girls and they are not rubbish in the slightest.
Feel free to add me on XBL.
Image

User avatar
Elgin_McQueen
Posts: 6752
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2006 6:08 am
Location: Elgin, Scotland

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by Elgin_McQueen » Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:37 pm

rossi46 wrote:Am I being naïve to not read any more into it than the iPhone is just another platform for releasing retro games on?

Like the N-Gage, but not so rubbish?
Exactly. With the iPhone having more power than many of the retro platforms this magazine is based around. The idea that all games released for it must aren't worthy is pathetic. 3D Deathchase would work for a start.
TMR wrote: And you wonder why you're being labelled as elitist... you couldn't be any more elite if you were a wireframe.

Image
Image

User avatar
FatTrucker
Posts: 4724
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2006 12:23 pm
Location: Essex

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by FatTrucker » Wed Mar 25, 2009 12:39 pm

Elgin_McQueen wrote:
rossi46 wrote:Am I being naïve to not read any more into it than the iPhone is just another platform for releasing retro games on?

Like the N-Gage, but not so rubbish?
Exactly. With the iPhone having more power than many of the retro platforms this magazine is based around. The idea that all games released for it must aren't worthy is pathetic. 3D Deathchase would work for a start.
I don't know. If the lag apparent in the controls on the racing game I played is indicative then something requiring the split second twitch gaming of 3D Deathchase could end up frustrating (using the tilt control anyway). I was impressed with the visuals on the system but the controls are just sh*t. I'm sure they might have some successful applications with certain types of game requiring a particular type of control but I just can't see them being able to convert any but a small handful of game types to the system with any real degree of playable success.
Darran@Retro Gamer wrote:I've played all the Bratz games and Barbia Horse Adventures, due to having two girls and they are not rubbish in the slightest.
Feel free to add me on XBL.
Image

User avatar
ToxieDogg
Posts: 8356
Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2005 8:54 am
Location: Vice City, a.k.a. 'Liverpool'

Re: The Iphone debate.

Post by ToxieDogg » Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:34 am

Elgin_McQueen wrote:
rossi46 wrote:Am I being naïve to not read any more into it than the iPhone is just another platform for releasing retro games on?

Like the N-Gage, but not so rubbish?
Exactly. With the iPhone having more power than many of the retro platforms this magazine is based around. The idea that all games released for it must aren't worthy is pathetic. 3D Deathchase would work for a start.
Well my original view, which I still maintain to an extent, was that mobile phones are just that....phones...and any games you can play on them are a bonus (because let's be honest, mobile phone games have got a long record of being crap), therefore they should not be treated as a viable gaming device format. However, a couple of people with strong arguments made me reconsider this particularly in relation to the latest game downloads so I'm not going to pass judgement on them until I've actually played them.

The biggest problem I've got with all of this is the fact that (and I'm not specifically having a dig at Darran here) Darran said that the phone game reviews would be incorporated into the existing review section in the mag, which I thought was fair enough. However, to open this month's mag and see not only a sizeable chhunk of it dedicated to reviews but also a 2 page spread within that dedicated to phone stuff, with a Q&A section on the making of Labyrinth (another downloadable phone game) alongside them is a little jarring.

I know Darran's already addressed my concern on this but still....personally, I don't have anything against a couple of phone games being reviewed alongside everything else but giving them their own section? No, just....no.
Sig pic temporarily removed...The Magnificent 7 will ride again 8)
Lost Dragon wrote:The 1st rule about Feedback is..

You do not give Feedback!

User avatar
Darran@Retro Gamer
Posts: 6770
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 11:34 am
Location: Bournemouth
Contact:

Re: The Mobile Phone Section

Post by Darran@Retro Gamer » Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:38 am

To be fair Toxie my very first post in this thread said that the reviews section would feature a dedicated mobile section. I made no mention of them being littered throughout the section. The only difference is the section crept up by a spread. I'm betting if we hadn't have had submitted while we had the two page mega drive piece that may not have happened.
Image

Bub&Bob
Posts: 6833
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2007 8:24 am

Re: The Mobile Phone Section

Post by Bub&Bob » Thu Mar 26, 2009 10:50 am

Well, I hate to say it but I am now quite tempted to get one!
Not just for the gaming but as an all round entertainment device - I need a new MP3 player and I do like the idea of downloading from I-tunes wherever I am!

I do blame RG 100% for this and as the missus will not be happy with me spending the cash I await the cheque for £280......
The dry fart for Barry MacDermot and all the cancer patients in the Glamorgan testicle ward

User avatar
Darran@Retro Gamer
Posts: 6770
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 11:34 am
Location: Bournemouth
Contact:

Re: The Mobile Phone Section

Post by Darran@Retro Gamer » Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:09 am

Bub&Bob wrote:Well, I hate to say it but I am now quite tempted to get one!
Not just for the gaming but as an all round entertainment device - I need a new MP3 player and I do like the idea of downloading from I-tunes wherever I am!

I do blame RG 100% for this and as the missus will not be happy with me spending the cash I await the cheque for £280......
You've done it now...
Image

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests