★ TouchArcade needs your help. Click here to support us on Patreon.

The Future of Portable/Mobile Gaming

11-03-2011, 03:58 PM
#1
Joined: Oct 2011
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 8
The Future of Portable/Mobile Gaming

I posted this in general but thought it would be better placed here..

Alright so, I wanted to share my prediction of what will eventually happen to the portable/mobile games market in the next several years, and see what you guys think.

It's my personal belief that around the time the iPhone 5 and iPad 3's release (1-2) years these tablets and smart phones will begin to compete directly with nintendo and Sony for the 'portable gaming' real-estate, and could in time actually become more profitable.

Let's face it, mobile gaming has always been a pretty ill respected and weak facet of the industry. Even before the iPhone the games on there have been pretty crummy as well as the technology backing them. It wasn't until recently (iPhone 3/4) that people are 'slowly' taking notice of these devices as potential gaming platforms. One example of this being Infinity Blade, a game built with the unreal engine that has amazing graphics and intuitive controls. It quickly became the fastest grossing app ever, and has sold over 13 million copy's, a remarkable achievement and in alot of ways a turning point in mobile gaming. Now all of a sudden, these devices, which in terms of gaming have always been thought of as gimmicky, with simple 2D platformers such as Angry Birds and Zombieville USA holding the reigns, can now run games with amazing unreal powered graphics and house innovative gameplay.

So as epic releases unreal tech to developers, and a slew of games begin development, a year later it's still not enough to turn heads let alone compete with Sony or nintendo. Around this time apple goes ahead and creates the A5 chip, which was initially introduced in the iPad2. Over a year later there is not one game that has come close to utilizing the full potentiall of this chip, it's THAT powerful. So as developers continue to try to cash in on the simple 2D platformers hoping to get a piece of the pie, there is not much in the way of innovation or pushing the platform forward. And so here we are, with what is slowly becoming a powerhouse gaming machine, and yet with very very few games to support this new technology. It's like having the PS3 come out but developers continue to stick to the PS2 because in there eyes, that's where the consumer base is at, and why fix what is not broken?

Epic games, without a doubt realizes this, which of course explains why they were at the apple keynote introducing Infinity Blade 2 for the iPhone 4S (A5) chip, to help promote this amazing technology and try to show people the potential for gaming on these devices.

So than you have nintendo DS and the upcoming playstation Vita. Nintendo has always dominated the portable games market, if anything because they had no real competition and also because they have a solid lineup of good games. Well what would happen if the developers of these games, realizing the potential of these devices began making there games for the iOS or android platforms? Well, it just happened a few weeks ago with scribblenaughts, a very popular nintendo DS game. It quickly became apples 'game of the week' and sold very well. What's even more amazing, is while this game cost 40$ on a nintendo DS it sold for 5-10$ on the iPhone, and that is including part 1, 2 and ten bonus levels. Why the price difference? Because it's sold digitally and does not require a publisher. This is a win/win for developers and gamers alike.

And than we have the playstation vita. Touted as the first 'next gen' gaming device with technology that rivals the current gen consoles. This is a device that's technology will not change throughout it's entire life span. Well not only will the iPad 3 and iPhone 5 have similar specs (A6 chip) we will likely see the A7 chip or higher in these devices before the vitas lifespan wears out.

So with all of this in mind, why would you 'really' need to buy these portable gaming platforms when the iOS devices are in fact just as much if not more powerful? If the same game that is awesome on the nintendo DS or Vita is on your phone or tablet and cost way cheaper? What could possibly convince the customer that spending 400$ on a DS or vita is a smarter investment than a tablet or phone that is not only more powerful gaming wise but also has all these other great features such as Internet, camera, apps, ect ect?

The only advantage I see them having is physical controls, but will that really matter that much to people when the same games are on there phone for a fraction of the cost? I think it's just a matter of time before people start to realize wow, not only can my device do all these things, but now it's a gaming machine too!

What do you guys think?
11-03-2011, 06:07 PM
#2
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Berlin, Germany
Posts: 1,674
my strongest believe is that i would say the future is that way ->


Quote:
Originally Posted by ActionMobileGames View Post

It's my personal belief that around the time the iPhone 5 and iPad 3's release (1-2) years these tablets and smart phones will begin to compete directly with nintendo and Sony for the 'portable gaming' real-estate, and could in time actually become more profitable.

Let's face it, mobile gaming has always been a pretty ill respected and weak facet of the industry. Even before the iPhone the games on there have been pretty crummy as well as the technology backing them. It wasn't until recently (iPhone 3/4) that people are 'slowly' taking notice of these devices as potential gaming platforms.
completely disagree.. since you write mobile gaming in general.. as if the gameboy and ds series never existed and no one noticed thoose..

maybe you should actualy rewrite that to state that mobile phones are transforming into tomorrows mobile gaming devices..

problem is sales numbers of a mobile gaming device like a gamboy are transparent.. its a device for gaming..

putting such next to multi purpose devices like the iphone does not mean much since one can't extract the numbers of actualy people playing on them..

and if i recall right also apple does not disclose a split down of numbers depending on usage..

-1 cr

Quote:
One example of this being Infinity Blade, a game built with the unreal engine that has amazing graphics and intuitive controls. It quickly became the fastest grossing app ever, and has sold over 13 million copy's, a remarkable achievement and in alot of ways a turning point in mobile gaming. Now all of a sudden, these devices, which in terms of gaming have always been thought of as gimmicky, with simple 2D platformers such as Angry Birds and Zombieville USA holding the reigns, can now run games with amazing unreal powered graphics and house innovative gameplay.
your numbers on infinity blade are completly wrong.. the latest official numbers from the "lets talk iphone" apple event was
$20 million in revenue on over 5 million paid downloads for the game..

and calling a modern punch out "innovative" gameplay is a slap to the face for the real innovative titles that where born on iOS..

-2 cr


Quote:
So as epic releases unreal tech to developers, and a slew of games begin development, a year later it's still not enough to turn heads let alone compete with Sony or nintendo. Around this time apple goes ahead and creates the A5 chip, which was initially introduced in the iPad2. Over a year later there is not one game that has come close to utilizing the full potentiall of this chip, it's THAT powerful. So as developers continue to try to cash in on the simple 2D platformers hoping to get a piece of the pie, there is not much in the way of innovation or pushing the platform forward. And so here we are, with what is slowly becoming a powerhouse gaming machine, and yet with very very few games to support this new technology. It's like having the PS3 come out but developers continue to stick to the PS2 because in there eyes, that's where the consumer base is at, and why fix what is not broken?

well that paragraph is so single sided.. bad bad developer cash in on simple 2d platformers and not pushing the boundaries of the tech.. *yawn*

maybe there is more to it? a developers capabilities to even be able to develope a game that pushes the boundaries? may it be monetary or skill or both..
or if it even made sense to develope such a high tech product in a market where the price sprial goes down ..

maybe no every developer is backed by EPIC.. an unknown company at all and not being publicly suppoerd by apple with tv ads, keynot appearences etc.

yeah i am sure it all boild down to bad developers who want to easily cash in money..
and since when does 2d make a game worser than a 3d game?

imho battleheart is a tenfold better game than infinity blade.. which is to me not much more than basic game in a nice shiny suite


i want to see gameplay & storytelling innovation in general and could care less about uber 3d shiny subsurface scattered bump mapping..


-1 cr


Quote:
Epic games, without a doubt realizes this, which of course explains why they were at the apple keynote introducing Infinity Blade 2 for the iPhone 4S (A5) chip, to help promote this amazing technology and try to show people the potential for gaming on these devices.

thats all graphical blabla.. i do not see any gameplay innovation in infinity blade.. maybe you might want to elaborate where that should be hidden..?

its a tech demo to show off how powerful the device is technically but thats it.. its a wow cool moment.. like "incoming" was 1998.. a graphically stunning repetitive gameplay snore fest..


Quote:
So than you have nintendo DS and the upcoming playstation Vita. Nintendo has always dominated the portable games market, if anything because they had no real competition and also because they have a solid lineup of good games. Well what would happen if the developers of these games, realizing the potential of these devices began making there games for the iOS or android platforms? Well, it just happened a few weeks ago with scribblenaughts, a very popular nintendo DS game. It quickly became apples 'game of the week' and sold very well. What's even more amazing, is while this game cost 40$ on a nintendo DS it sold for 5-10$ on the iPhone, and that is including part 1, 2 and ten bonus levels. Why the price difference? Because it's sold digitally and does not require a publisher. This is a win/win for developers and gamers alike.

your post is so full of wrong numbers its incredible..

scribblenaughts on iOS does not include both ds scribblenauts games and + 10 levels.. it has 40 levels from part 1 & 2 and 10 new levels compare to 220!!! levels in part 1 and 120 in part 2..


so why is the price difference..? because the iOS version is barely a demo compare to the DS version.. so you get less for less money.. wow .. what a win win situation..


-2 cr


Quote:
And than we have the playstation vita. Touted as the first 'next gen' gaming device with technology that rivals the current gen consoles. This is a device that's technology will not change throughout it's entire life span. Well not only will the iPad 3 and iPhone 5 have similar specs (A6 chip) we will likely see the A7 chip or higher in these devices before the vitas lifespan wears out.

yeah of course all developers will rush out to optimize their games for a yearly changing mobile platform.. thats like saying every 3d card generation on pc got tons of exclusive games that pushed the boundaries of thoose devices..

and actualy having a stable spec sheet is better for optimizations than an even slightly fragmented platform..

look on how first gen games on 360 or ps3 looked like and compare that to this years blockbusters..


so who cares (except you) for amazing tech specs if developers are not even pushing the boundaries of current or last gen hardware.. who cares if the A7 , A8 is a tenfold faster than the vita?

if mobile devices enter into the realm of specs the majority of platforms have to offer increasing the specs does not make much sense since the lowest denominators are of importance not the fastest spec..

pcs are technically several years ahead of the current consoles if you put together an expensive high end rig.. but that means squad if it makes no sense to develope a hightech product for a niche consumer base..

i don't see a reason why i need to buy a graphiccards every year thats at least as expensive as a console..

the same will apply to mobile phones as a gaming platform.. you surely won't buy a new iphone every year to play the few gimicky games that "push" the hardware optically
and surely the masses won't do either.. especially not for gaming..


-1 cr

11-03-2011, 06:09 PM
#3
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Berlin, Germany
Posts: 1,674
...needed to split the reply because there is a weird 10000 characters limit


Quote:
So with all of this in mind, why would you 'really' need to buy these portable gaming platforms when the iOS devices are in fact just as much if not more powerful? If the same game that is awesome on the nintendo DS or Vita is on your phone or tablet and cost way cheaper? What could possibly convince the customer that spending 400$ on a DS or vita is a smarter investment than a tablet or phone that is not only more powerful gaming wise but also has all these other great features such as Internet, camera, apps, ect ect?
lol wtf since when is a DS or a Vita cost 400$ ?

and the thing is you do not get the same games that are on DS or Vita on iOS.. thats the reason thoose platforms still exist because they have content that sells at an alot higher price..

-1 cr

iOS will thrive as a gaming platform.. but i rather see it staying where it is .. a more casual platform.. rather than becoming a real "core" gaming platform
with tripple a titles that sell for 40-60$ a pop..

you won't see an uncharted or wipeout quality game on iOS anytime soon..
and that has several reasons.. where tech is the least of the problem..

exclusive developement is expensive.. therefore you won't see much high tech pushy stuff on iOS till the hardware matches thoose of other platforms which then would allow for easier multi platform release..

iOS game related grossing is still a small fart against even single blockbuster games on "traditional" platforms..


Quote:
The only advantage I see them having is physical controls, but will that really matter that much to people when the same games are on there phone for a fraction of the cost? I think it's just a matter of time before people start to realize wow, not only can my device do all these things, but now it's a gaming machine too!

once EA releases battlefield 5 on the ipad 8 with the same feature/quality as on playstation 4 and xbox 720.. it surely won't be cheaper in price..

the asking price will be very similar.. the same as VITA prices are very similar to ps3 prices.. making bigger games does not get cheaper only because you support digital distributions..

actualy i buy most of my non iOS games retail because they are alot cheaper than on other digital distribution platforms like xblox live, psn or steam&co..

digital distribution does not mean cheaper games.. but higher revenue


Quote:
What do you guys think?

the future is that way ->
11-03-2011, 06:22 PM
#4
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
ack. i cannot read all of this stuff..

the future of the industry, as ever, is up in the air. Consoles will be here for awhile, next year will be nicer for 3DS than 2011 was, and Vita will just be the PSP2 (I'm calling it again!) It will sell and have a nice enough niche, but I think time is running out for dedicated hi-level portable game devices.

I have a funny feeling that down the road consoles/PC/etc will all just be replaced by terminals (OnLive box, wtvr) and "the cloud" which you can access via said box, or iPhone/Android thing. This is still several years off due to many reasons (the big retailers aren't too keen to let physical media disappear just yet, en masse) and eventually DD will rule. EA/ATVI/MS/Sony/Zynga/FB will still be the big delivery system for everything (through their "services" if not so much hardware anymore. Not sure how Nintendo fits into it all, but I won't count them out yet. They always have a stubborn way of marching to their own drummer, for good or ill. I'll tell you one thing, they will be the last to leave hardware..
11-03-2011, 06:44 PM
#5
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: In a car
Posts: 324
3D is overkill for any type of portable device!In my opinion nothing compares with playing a high quality title on a 40 inch plasma and a killer surround!As mr.Ugly said iOS is a platform for casual games and if you take a look at the charts you will see that that's what most people want!

My Twitter:@Tudor
11-03-2011, 07:10 PM
#6
I don't know about you guys, but I've been very impressed and encouraged with the upward trend in terms of price in games. If you look at the top 20 games right now, I only count 3 .99 games. That's good news! Users are starting to learn that it's ok to pay more for good games.
11-03-2011, 07:34 PM
#7
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Berlin, Germany
Posts: 1,674
? in what top list are you looking at?

in the top20 iphone games in the usa i see 16 titles for a dollar..

modern combat, word with friends, pvz and hanging with friends priced higher..

so where are all the expensive apps you see?
11-03-2011, 08:10 PM
#8
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 210
mr ugly a silly question, what do -1 and -2 cr mean?
11-03-2011, 08:14 PM
#9
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr.Ugly View Post
? in what top list are you looking at?

in the top20 iphone games in the usa i see 16 titles for a dollar..

modern combat, word with friends, pvz and hanging with friends priced higher..

so where are all the expensive apps you see?
Ah nuts, I was looking at the iPad side of games the whole time. That makes a lot more sense. I'm just going to shut up for the rest of the week.
11-03-2011, 09:58 PM
#10
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Outer Space
Posts: 411
flawed argument

future of mobile gaming? what constitutes mobile gaming?

devices on the go?

mobile phones on the go?

what about the gameboy, what about the n-gage? to get where the iPod touch got, it had to learn from these lessons. so don look down on those game changers. apple didn't just wake up and invent something out of thin air. they saw what worked and what didn't.

incorrect numbers aside, people who play games on the go on their mobile phone and on a portable gaming machine are separate.

i would NEVER play fifa soccer on my iOS device but on my psp, all day everyday.

u are trying to merge two different people and clump them together which is incorrect.

two different camps here. please read thru your article again.