Well it’s here, it’s finally here. The Apple Watch is released this week and it promises to be the tech event of 2015. As with pretty much any Apple release of recent years the iWatch is a big deal because it is something new, because it is Apple and because everyone is really hoping that it is something more than just a watch!
As regular readers will know we’re big into our gaming and technology here at Pace Towers so one aspect of this release that’s really got our creative juices pumping is exactly what effect the iWatch is going to have on mobile gaming. How will the watch co-exist with current games and how will new games be designed with the watch in mind?
Well if you’re anything like us and these questions are keeping you up at night, we strongly suggest you sit back, relax and read on…..
Interaction with iPhone
It is safe to say that the first games to appear on iPhone will most likely be ports of existing games with perhaps some tweaking. The smaller screen of the watch will pose more than a few questions as to its gaming capabilities. That said – let’s not forget that small screens have been used in gaming before – those pixelated LED standalone games that were popular in the ‘80s and early ‘90s spring to mind. And there’s no reason why scrolling platform games where the whole screen doesn’t need to be full at any one time wouldn’t work on this size screen. So there are plenty of game types that have the potential to be used on the watch and we’re certain that innovative developers have been hard at work experimenting with the screen size limitations.
One of the more interesting possibilities regarding gaming is how the iWatch can interact with the iPhone and iPad. In the first instance we will likely see the watch interface used as an additional screen, for in-game stats or character messages for instance. Or there may well be a function which lets you divert e-mails and messages to the watch without having them flash up on screen while you are playing on your iPhone. This synergy and the potentials of it are where the options get interesting for the iWatch.
Changing the Game?
We believe, given time, the iWatch could become the hardware equivalent of ‘breaking the fourth wall’. Games are no longer restricted to one screen and developers now have effectively an iPhone screen + to work with. How games utilise this extra screen is what will really excite the user. Indeed the big hitting games companies are already talking about ‘companion apps’ for the iWatch that will run alongside their full version brothers and sisters on the larger screen.
But let’s not forget that this is just the first generation of the Apple Watch and so there will likely be some form of trial and error before we begin to see its true potential for gaming. It will take some innovation and thought and possibly another generation of wearable tech before we see the best of gaming on the Apple Watch. However we’re sure developers thinking ‘out of the watch’ will be able to overcome these obstacles in order to improve and take the gaming experience to another level.
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