When id Software programmer and FPS pioneer John Carmack speaks, we listen. Sometimes, we even understand what he’s saying. In this post over at the Bethesda developer blog, Carmack kindly separates information on id’s upcoming Rage game for the iPhone from "technical geek details" that delve into exactly how he got it running on the smartphone.
Carmack explains that Rage for the iPhone uses the same "content creation pipeline and media" as the PC and console game, but that porting the full experience would have been a "hopelessly bad idea." Instead, the iPhone title is built around Mutant Bash TV, a combat game show that sounds like an arcadey shooter similar to Doom Resurrection. The game is billed as "all action, all the time," and Carmack claims its carefully crafted gameplay makes levels enjoyable to play over and over again.
If you’re itching to give your iPhone a dose of Rage, expect a hefty 700MB download. That’s a drop in the bucket compared to the footprint of the full PC release, which will total 20GB. You’ll be able to get your hands on the iPhone game in November, nearly a year before Rage hits the PC and consoles. According to the Carmack, the high-def iPhone version will cost just $1.99.
The rest of the post goes on to discuss managing memory on the iPhone, using texture islands to improve performance, and bumping into OpenAL limits on the number of sound buffers. Carmack also goes over a couple of difficult technical decisions related to the game’s development. All in all, it’s an interesting read, if one that often flew over my head.