Reasonably short one because I’m posting this from the iPad itself, but here’s a look at a few iPhone games on the iPad, plus two iPad specific games.
Photos are at the bottom, and also sideways because that is how the iPad takes them, and I can’t do anything about it on here. First up is wolf3d classic, one of my favorite FPS games. This is a really good port of Wolf3d for the iPhone, and includes the original 6 episodes, plus Spear of Destiny and the Mac port graphics, which were better than the PC’s. Scaled to 2x, the game is still highly playable, and the framerate is smooth. Scaling doesn’t matter in this case, and the game is pretty much like what you enjoy on the PC. You just have the benefit of a bigger screen!
Doom Classic is a port of The Ultimate Doom for the iPhone. Like wolf3d, you have to upscale it. At 2x graphically it’s fine, but controls become a bit more fiddly due to the larger screen size. Also you have to move the iPad around a lot to strafe. On the iPhone, due to its smaller size, this isn’t a problem. It can be an annoyance with the larger and heavier iPad though. Still playable with no noticeable lag though.
Plants vs Zombies has an iPad specific version that makes good use of the bigger screen. Graphically it is fantastic, but it does lag in a few places. I didn’t play the iPhone version so I can’t comment on what is new, but the game plays really well and looks fantastic. If you have an iPad, get it.
Nethack HD is another iPad specific add that ports nethack to the iPad. It needs some work but the high res display (for a device this small) makes for a lot of screen real-estate to comfortably play this old rouge like. The port needs some work and is missing keyboard functionality, but it again demonstrates that the larger screen is a benefit for games.
Finally I checked Doom: Resurrection, a 3D on-rails shooter. Like Doom Classic, this one suffers from the movement problem where moving the device around to aim becomes cumbersome and occasionally difficult. Graphically this one does suffer from a bit of pixellation but is otherwise fine and smooth. The pixellation is mostly noticed in the UI and is not overly distracting. Annoyingly, the motion controls don’t function so well when the speaker port is at the top, which is a problem because that’s the most comfortable way to play the game.
Hopefully I’ll be able to review more iPad games over the coming month, as well as new iPad apps (some of those will be posted in the next few days). For now I’m still getting acquainted with the system.