Hot off the announcement of their first iOS game (Project Sword – check out the clip at the end of this post!) this morning at Apple’s iPod event, Epic Games (Gears of War, Unreal Tournament) sends word that a playable tech demo of Unreal Engine working on the iPhone is now live on the iTunes store.
Entitled Epic Citadel, the demo gives you a sneak peek as to what kind of graphics you can expect from Project Sword when it releases later this year. As you can see from the screenshots below, the graphics are jaw-droppingly good. It reminded me a little bit of the wonder I experienced when I saw the first Unreal engine fly through way back in the 90′s before the first Unreal game came out.
Now, don’t expect much of a game with Epic Citadel, it’s basically a really pretty graphics tech demo. You can move around using virtual dual analog sticks or you can let the software take over and provide a “Guided Tour”, which is basically an autopilot demo. You can also navigate by tapping anywhere on the screen and the character will automatically walk there.
I gave it a short test drive and the frame rate was locked in at about 30fps for the most part, but dipped below during a flyby or when a lot of the environment was in view. Nevertheless, it’s a real impressive piece of software and might be worth keeping on your iPhone/iPad just to show off to your friends. Plus, at “free”, its the right price.
We’ve already got a cool gyroscope control proof of concept with ngmoco’s Gun Range. Epic’s Epic Citadel shows us what the graphics capability of the iPhone/iPad is. Come on devs, enough with the demos. Let’s get a real game out now, eh?