The first version of Battle Squadron required minimum iPad, iPhone 3GS, or iPod 3rd generation. The coming version will run on iPhone 3G and iPod 2nd generation as well.
It has always been our intention that Battle Squadron should run on all iOS devices. Due to mainly some graphical technicalities, the first version did however not run on early iOS devices.
To make Battle Squadron run on iphone 3G and iPod 2nd generation actually required a bit of recoding. This was mostly due to the exact way the graphical processors function on these devices.
We had hoped that Battle Squadron would also run on the original iPhone and iPod 1st generation. Our initial tests however indicated that these units are not designed for fast paced action games that runs 60 frames per second – even if their processors run at several hundred MHz !
In many ways this technical redesign required for iPhone 3G and iPod 2nd generation was similar to all the numerous technical “quirks” that had to be made to make the game run on the Amiga – a computer that was designed 25 years ago and ran at only 7.14 MHz !
The next release of Battle Squadron will furthermore include 2-player, Game Center Achievements, and enhanced controls. So get ready to play Battle Squadron with your friends.
11 thoughts on “Battle Squadron on ALL iOS 4.0 devices”
“Our initial tests however indicated that these units are not designed for fast paced action games that runs 60 frames per second – even if their processors run at several hundred MHz !”
Yes, it’s ridiculous.
Don’t know how you draw your stuff, but let me guess: did you have fun with blending and / or texture upload?
The game itself was actually several frames down in rate on iPod 1g, but that also has extensive texture upload (and some blending). The thing that convinced me that it would not be possible was however that the sideways scroll to the “options menu” also did not run at 60 fps, and here there is no texture upload at all (but some blending). This showed that the game could never run properly 😉
I once had to develop a game (that one got canceled due to the company going down in the meantime though) where a 320×200 screen was created “manually” and then uploaded as texture and displayed as textured quad. The game logic itself was very very expensive but the real killer on 2nd and 1st gen devices was that per-frame texture upload.
I was able to speed that up significantly by using the pthread_setschedparam API to increase the main thread’s priority temporarily for that task. The performance gain was enough to make it playable on 2nd gen devices at least. It actually got more or less playable on 1st gen devices too, but occasionally the OpenAL thread would starve there 😛
Anyway: that tweak plus a tight game loop without DisplayLink and without a timer could probably make it possible on 1st gen devices for you. You’ll never reach 60 frames though. But maybe enough to make it playable?
Thanks for the details Daytona. Yes, this is exactly the same issue. Even if it was possibly to make BS run “reasonably” on iPod 1st generation it would probably not be a very nice experience… so better leave that one alone, since there are other more interesting things to work one 😉
… And Daytona, of course keep a look out for the new harder mode… “Air Commodore” that we will set up especially for you and your “accomplishes” 😉
🙂 Hehe! I’ll take care that Vakum doesn’t beat me in THAT one then…
Good luck with that… he is #1 on all 3 difficulties now 😉
This will be fun!!!! 😀
I’m ready 🙂
Thanks Kamel 🙂 We still have a few more weeks of work to do before we are ready…