On Monday, we posted a video of some folks playing a multiplayer game of Quake 3: Arena on a pair of iPod Touch portable media players. Was the video a fake (like one reader suggested), or just the result of a neat little hack by developers with too much time on their hands? As GameCyte has discovered, it's something quite different—and altogether much more exciting.
The blog where the video appeared is tied to HermitWorks Entertainment, an indie game development house started by former BioWare staffers Cameron and Marcia Tofer. The studio already has one title to its name: Space Trader, which is a multi-platform "action trading game" based on the open-source id Tech 3 (a.k.a. Quake 3) engine. In his short interview with GameCyte, Cameron Tofer has revealed that the Quake 3 iPod touch port is the first stepping stone to a version of Space Trader for the iPhone.
According to Tofer, his team managed the Quake 3 port in "between eight and twelve hours" using iPod touch players unlocked with Jailbreak—and without Apple's official software development toolkit (SDK). Apple support or not, however, HermitWorks is scrambling to complete its port of Space Trader to the iPod touch and iPhone in time for the June launch of the official iPhone App Store. By then, the team plans to have brought a more refined touch- and tilt-based control scheme as well as per-pixel lighting into the iPhone/iPod touch version of their game.