Unreal Engine 3 on the iPhone ... it looked better in person!
While we've yet to see Unreal Engine 3 ported to Nintendo's Wii or Sony's PSP, Epic did undertake the considerable task of squeezing its seemingly ubiquitous middleware platform onto Apple's similarly ubiquitous iPhone. According to Epic's Josh Adams – Epic Games' senior console programmer – that could be due to fundamental hardware limitations in the other platforms. You see, the iPhone 3GS has a PowerVR SGX graphics processor which supports programmable shaders. According to Adams, "Programmable shaders are something UE3 is pretty much dependent on."
Though you're probably most familiar with Unreal Engine on Windows, Xbox 360, and PS3, Adams says the engine also runs on Nvidia's Tegra 2 platform, on Linux, and on Mac, though (Adams notes) "we haven't shipped any games on those platforms yet." Adams says the iPhone port was "a fun 'Can we get UE3 onto the iPhone?' kind of project." Though Adams' presentation was exceptionally technical – this is the Game Developers Conference, after all! – it's fascinating to hear about the technical underpinnings and workflows that result in this type of outcome.