Apple has revealed the next steps in their plans to turn the iPhone into the mobile gaming device of choice, including peer-to-peer wireless multiplayer, lots of DLC and microtransactions, and more.
Apple held a preview event for the next operating system for the iPhone earlier today, and, among a slew of announcements (copy and paste is coming to iPhone, woo), the company revealed a number of new features that will impact the way games are played on the phone.
iPhone OS 3.0 will support in-application microtransactions for all of its applications. For your Sports News application, to use Apple's example, this means you can upgrade your subscription straight from the app. For games, as you probably guessed by now, this means DLC. During the conference, Apple showed games that sold levels for $2.00, shirt packs for virtual dogs for 99 cents, and even an FPS in which you have to buy a rocket launcher for 99 cents.
That sounds bad, yeah, but OS 3.0 should bring plenty of good things to iPhone gaming as well. There's the new Push notification service that will make it easy to get invites and alerts from your game applications even when you're not playing. Also, games will be able to support peer-to-peer multiplayer over the iPhone's wireless capabilities, and more games will feature full-fledged online multiplayer.
On the games front, Electronic Arts showed off its Sims game, which looks like The Sims. Publisher ngmoco of WordFu and Rolando fame was also in attendance, and demoed a virtual pet game called Touch Pets and a multiplayer FPS called LiveFire, which features global online play and in which you, yeah this is the one, have to pay to get a rocket launcher.
All in all, whether you love or hate paying micro-increments of cash for things like shirts for your fake dog or a weapon that has been standard in every single FPS ever, iPhone gaming's growing and it's here to stay. It's not all going to be like this - the diversity of applications will continue to grow and there's sure to be plenty more that'll make interesting use of the device's ever-expanding set of features.