Just a few weeks ago, Epic Games Vice President Mark Rein remarked that "the second Nintendo releases a piece of hardware that can run our engine well, we'll be on it like water on fish". It sounds like that time has come sooner than we thought, with Ubisoft happily reporting that the Unreal Engine not only runs on the brand new 3DS, but it looks quite impressive while it does so.
Epic have gone on the record saying that the Engine is unable to run "well" on the glasses-free 3D handheld, which is why Epic won't be developing any games for that platform in the near future. This new statement from Splinter Cell 3D producer Fabrice Cuny may just convince them otherwise.
When asked in a recent Q&A with Gamespot UK about the processing power of the 3DS, when compared to the Wii, Cuny replied quite positively:
"The 3DS is powerful, and we are able to run the Unreal engine on this console, which is pretty impressive for a handheld machine, and the 3D doesn’t affect the performance (thanks to my amazing programmers). The architecture is different compared to a Wii or some other platforms that we had to work with here at Ubisoft Montreal."
So - what does this mean for Epic, Nintendo and the future of gaming on the 3DS? Will we see Gears of War in a portable, pocket-size? What about Mass Effect? (More realistically, I think an adaptation of Infinity Blade wouldn't be totally out of the picture...)
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Jimmy the Geek