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Carmack Vents Rage on the iPhone


John Carmack, the programming genius behind titles such as Doom, and Quake, has demoed a version of his latest game, Rage, running smoothly on the iPhone.

At a keynote at the QuakeCon gaming convention in Dallas, Texas, USA, Carmack showed off a tech preview of Rage, running on an iPhone 4 at a silky smooth 60 frames per second.

This is an impressive feat considering that from the looks of the demo, the game will give little away to the full-fat versions running on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 platforms. Carmack said that the game will also run on an old 2G iPhone, but that it would be most impressive on the iPad.

Carmack revealed that the iPhone version game came about after thinking about building a version of the game for the Wii - but clearly he was more taken with what the iOS4 platform could do.

“This is incredibly cool on an iPad, the touch, moving around looking at it…and the visceral feel of just kind of dragging things around is very, very neat.”

Rage is Carmack’s first major ticket title since Doom 3, and will be based on iD Software’s Tech 5 gaming engine, which was announced as far back at August 2007.

The iPhone version of the game however, is expected to appear in the App Store before the end of the year, with a follow up to come in 2011 in line with the console and PC versions.

To get the full impact of the impressive demo, be sure to check out the video above.

Via: JoyStick.

Tim Sutton

August 13, 2010, 7:12 pm

I suppose it could be caused by display lag on the big screen, but that looked to be considerably less than 60fps. 15-30fps is my guess. Very impressive visually though.

Controlling an FPS on a touchscreen has been horrible every time I've tried it however. But.. if it can run on iPhone, it'll run brilliantly on 3DS, an idea that gives me a slight trouser happy.


August 13, 2010, 7:56 pm

@Tim Sutton: I wouldn't assume that it would run better on a 3DS. Two years ago, Carmack was quoted as having said that the iPhone was "more powerful than a Nintendo DS and PSP combined".

But yes, FPS + touchscreen is not a pleasant thought.


August 13, 2010, 8:17 pm

@Tim Sutton - It was probably only filmed at 25fps-30fps so that's we it seems less than 60. lol.


August 13, 2010, 8:22 pm

It looks much better here: http://gamevideos.1up.com/v...


August 13, 2010, 8:33 pm

@Chris: But yes, FPS + touchscreen is not a pleasant thought.

Yes, not ideal. But I wonder if these will become more popular.



Tim Sutton

August 13, 2010, 8:35 pm


There's no doubt that the 3DS graphics hardware outguns current iPhone graphics hardware comfortably, you can find pixel fill rate and triangles per second comparisons all over the place. It's about 3 times as capable at pushing pixels as the iPhone to give a rough idea.

I doubt highly that Nintendo will have shoved an iPhone4 matching 1GHZ processor in there as well though, but that's just not known yet. It's exciting to be a gamer at the moment!

Tim Sutton

August 13, 2010, 8:38 pm


Thanks for that link, looked MUCH better. Really very very impressive.


August 13, 2010, 8:43 pm

No doubt that's very impressive from a technical standpoint and john Carmack is a freaking genius but what's the point if the controls are terrible. Every touchscreen fps (and most other games) i've tried have been a chore to play. Maybe this one will be different...no, no it won't. Bring on the gaming phone already.


August 13, 2010, 10:43 pm

What everyone is forgetting is that that the iPhone4 has 3 axis gyroscopic. If utilised properly it may just be enough for acceptable fps gaming.

Carmack is coding god!! I can't believe he has managed to code and run a next gen game engine on a freaking phone!!!

The rapid developments in today's phone technology is almost reminiscent of the rise of PC tech some 10-15 years


August 13, 2010, 11:28 pm

Don't you think Carmack is a really cool name? Nearly as cool as Carmichael... but not quite.


August 13, 2010, 11:32 pm

@Tim Sutton: I don't put too much stock in graphics hardware specs as the reality often ends up being very different from what the numbers indicate. The demos I've seen look impressive, but so far nothing that outclasses this iPhone demo. It may well end up being a mini powerhouse... we'll see.

@Keith: Now there's a solution. Proprietary, though. Perhaps Apple will buy them out and release an 'official' alternative. Apparently there's a patent in the works:



August 14, 2010, 3:01 am

But the battery barely lasts me a day just making phone calls and browsing the web .... I hate to think what this would do.

Still I guess you could pack some spare batteries to swap in when it starts running low ... oh hang on .....

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