A new report by DFC Intelligence, called “The Market for iPhone and iPod Touch Games and Applications,” says the iPhone platform (which includes the iPod touch) has potential to overtake Nintendo and Sony, possibly by 2014.
Here’s the presumption: The firm thinks that popularity for Nintendo’s DSi and Sony’s PSP Go has maxxed out. And since the iPhone has more overall functionality (as a phone, media player, Internet browser, AND gaming device) than Nintendo’s and Sony’s products (which center on gaming, with web and media as secondary functions), the Apple device is better positioned for dominance in the future.
Going forward, the analysts predict games will account for as much as 23 percent of all iPhone/iPod touch apps. With it comprising such a large chunk, they say Apple will obviously stay focused on it.
iPhone gaming has been making headlines for awhile now, and if I believe them, then it’s a no-brainer. And still — some of the most hardcore gamers I know don’t consider it seriously. (No D-pad, no buttons at all, for that matter; terrible battery life, especially for online games; hardware isn’t up to snuff; MMO selection isn’t that great yet; etc). Then again, there are sure to be enhancements between now and 2014, which could up things considerably.
But what say youse? Do the analysts have it right? Has your phone become your mobile gaming device? If not, what would it take for you to trade in your DSi or PSP Go?
Some MMO/RPG Games to Ponder
So, while I was researching this, I came across a Top 5 list from MMORPG.com. If you’re into massively multiplayer online games or role playing games, you might find something here worth checking out. Here are their picks (in no particular order):
Outer Empires: A browser-based game that’s set in a persistent galaxy. Space fans will dig the environment, which lets them establish colonies and factions. Outer Empires is currently in beta.
Watchmen: Justice is Coming: Inspired by the movie, Last Legion’s MMO game is an onboard app that lets users fight crime in NYC with customized avatars. The devs have been good about regular updates (that fixed some issues with the costume editor and accounts). It’s set in a real-time 3D environment.
Parallel Kingdom: This is more of an ARG (alternate reality game) than a typical MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game). The setting of Parallel Kingdom is actually the real world, as the app uses the iPhone’s GPS directly in gameplay. Players — in their pursuit to kill monsters, acquire skills and trade resources — can actually run into each other on the street.
Graal Zone: Graal Online offers this mobile web-based app, which features scrolling backgrounds and commando-style battles. It’s a pseudo-futuristic 2D twist on the old 'capture the flag' game. Players can buy weapons (through in-game transactions) or guild up for teamplay with users from all over the world.
World of Warcraft Mobile Armory: This isn’t really an MMO by itself, but more like an extension of World of Warcraft that gives existing players mobile access to the in-game database. If you can’t wait till you get home, you can log in with your WoW account, and check things out — like character profiles, armory database info, talent specs, and achievements — while on the go.