As we get closer and closer to the App Store launch (I'm still holding out for seeing an updated iTunes on July 8th, one week from today), a few big name game developers have announced that they're checking out the market for gaming on the iPhone.
First up is Bioware, one of my favorite developers and makers of the classics Baldur's Gate, Neverwinter Nights, and the recent Mass Effect. In an interview with Patrick Klepek over at MTV Multiplayer, Bioware's CEOs Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk said that yes, they are watching the iPhone as a game development platform, but they're mostly keep an eye on "what type of consumer buys games on it and what type of experience they're looking for." I worry a bit that they mean that if only casual games sell big they'll stay away from it, because gentlemen, I'm playing games on the iPhone, and I would love a solid, in-depth RPG to play. Who wouldn't, really?
And former EA exec Neil Young has split from the company to form his own development house, called "ng:moco" ( we have no idea what that means, either). They'll focus exclusively on making games for the iPhone -- Young says that they want to step up to be the "spiritual first-party" for the platform. He points out that the iPhone has the power of a PSP, except that it's also got a camera, an accelerometer, a multitouch screen, is location-aware, has all your media on it, and is always on and always connected. Just like we've always said, that's a great gaming device, and it's exciting news that a former EA exec like Young is going to work on getting some great games developed for it.