Ever since Epic Games introduced Infinity Blade as Project Sword at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference in 2010, ChAIR Entertainment (subsidiary of Epic Games) has received remarkable attention for promising then delivering a gaming experience that pushes Apple’s latest hardware to its limits. After Infinity Blade was officially titled in November, 2010, and released for the masses a month later, the game sold 274,000 copies in the first five days — $1.6 Million in net revenue is impressive even for a highly anticipated gaming title. A year later, Infinity Blade II has hit the market after another impressive tech demo, earning $5 million in revenue since its December 1st launch. The original Infinity Blade took three months to reach the $5 million marker and has earned Epic Games $23 million to date.
Since the original title launched, the Infinity Blade franchise has earned over $30 Million in revenue. While we know and love Infinity Blade for its intense graphics and fluid gameplay on our iOS devices, Infinity Blade spans the media with an official Infinity Blade: Original Soundtrack, a digital novel by the name of Infinity Blade: Awakening, and the coin operated arcade game Infinity Blade FX.
December 1st will see the launch of Infinity Blade 2, the much anticipated follow-up that brings much improved visuals to one of iOS’ strongest titles. First showcased at this year’s iPhone 4S keynote, Infinity Blade 2 has already gotten plenty of hands-on time by the likes of IGN and SlideToPlay, and is expected to be a massive hit when it lands next week. Infinity Blade 2 will feature more weapons, an updated combat system, and more areas to explore while remaining familiar to the gameplay you love. The visuals, however, are what Infinity Blade is renown for. In the latest trailer, the developers discuss the game’s jaw-dropping graphics that’ll be delivered thanks to Apple’s A5 processor. Catch the video after the break!
IGN Goes Hands-On with Infinity Blade 2, Coming December 1
IGN’s Justin Davis got to spend some time with Chair’s upcoming iOS sequel to Infinity Blade, aptly named Infinity Blade 2, and says the game is a huge improvement over its predecessor:
It’s impressive what Chair has been able to pull off. The original Infinity Blade launched with about 10 combat locations. The sequel has over 40. It seems virtually every element of Infinity Blade 1 has been blown out. The company has aggressive post-launch plans far beyond just adding more swords and football helmets, as well. Clash Mobs are one teased feature. Players might fight an enemy with “10 million or more” hit points. If Infinity Blade players around the world whittle down the shared health pool, all participants can be awarded with special bonuses.
Infinity Blade 2 is due out December 1.
Infinity Blade 2 will feature more levels — or, in the game’s parlance, “loops” between areas and enemies — new weapons, an updated combat system and graphics completely re-engineered for Apple’s A5 chip. Indeed, Infinity Blade 2 was demoed at Apple’s “Let’s talk iPhone” media event in October to showcase the iPhone 4S’ graphics capabilities.
The original Infinity Blade was a success on the App Store (grossing $1.6 million in five days) and the first game to truly show what the A4 processor, Apple’s Retina Display and the Unreal Engine could do for mobile games. The game received a series of updates, including multiplayer support, but was criticized for its repetitive gameplay and tedious cut scenes. Infinity Blade 2 seems to have a fix for these issues, so make sure to read Davis’ preview to learn more.
As announced earlier this week, Epic Games released today an update to Infinity Blade for iPhone and iPad, which reaches version 1.3 and introduces a new multiplayer mode, more gear to collect during the game, a new survivor mode, and much more. The new multiplayer section, called Arena, allows you to pick a knight or titan and fight with your friends using Game Center for easy match-making, leaderboard access, and so forth. I haven’t been able to play more than two fights for now (I don’t spend much time on Game Center), but the game didn’t seem to lag and was actually pretty stable and responsive.
As we previously reported, the new update also includes a survivor mode to see how far you can go fighting titans in a single game, new achievements, new rings, swords and shields. Admittedly though, the new big feature is multiplayer, and I’m sure Infinity Blade aficionados are going to spend hours trying to refine their fighting skills to make sure they’re on top of their Game Center stats.
Promised late last year soon after the release of the original game for iPhone and iPad, Epic Games just confirmed the long-awaited update to Infinity Blade featuring multiplayer is coming out on Thursday, May 19. The free update, called Infinity Blade: Arena, will allow gamers to challenge each other online using Game Center assuming the role of Titan or Knight in the game. No word on automatic in-game match-making and battle requests yet, but we guess Chair Entertainment and Epic Games have gone all out to provide full Game Center support in the update.
The new Infinity Blade will also sport a Survivor mode to see how long users can last while fighting Titans, and Facebook integration to share screengrabs of avatars online. There’s more though: the developers have included “new helms for every season”, “more than two dozen new magic rings, swords, shields, and helmets for players to collect and master” as well as new achievements, new leaderboards and additional “surprises.”
You can read more on Epic Games’ official blog post, and go download the app here while you’re waiting for the update.
Q: What are the challenges in developing for Android? The demo there seems to be running great.
A: It runs really well and really fast. One of the problems with the Android marketplace is hardware fragmentation, that’s a really big issue. The other thing is marketplace fragmentation, there are so many different appstores out there. The Android marketplace is a little more difficult [to develop for] because there is less control. I think the Android marketplace is robust … I find it very easy to buy things on it, it’s just that Apple has very tight control. So anything in the Apple world is perfect. It’s just perfect. We like that, we like that a lot. We know that it’s just gonna work. Sometimes that’s not always the case in the Android marketplace.
Infinity Blade did great in the first weeks of App Store and slowly dropped off since then. A major update with new maps, weapons and features is expected soon, and that should bring the app back into the charts. We can’t wait to see more Unreal Engine games find their way to iOS. Read the whole interview here.
According to a tweet from the official Infinity Blade account, the widely anticipated first free update for one of the most successful iOS games ever is coming tomorrow in the App Store, two days ahead of the iTunes Connect shutdown for developers.
Tomorrow’s update will include five new weapons, five new shields, five new helmets and a new armor set. This equipment will allow users to raise the level cap to 45, but there’s more. New areas will be included, namely dungeons. There will be a new enemy to face and more details about the God King will be revealed.
Infinity Blade for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch is available at $5.99 in the App Store. The update that will go live tomorrow won’t include a multiplayer mode (it seems like that’s coming in January), but it’ll be free for all existing users. No in-app purchase to unlock the new stuff.
Work started on new content the day after the game’s five-month development ended, so Chair already has some goodies on deck. Next week’s addition, as well as another planned for January, will include more “booster packs,” as Mustard describes them — some additional content to keep things fresh and help entertain us sad sacks who’ve mastered all the gear.
Next week’s pack includes five new weapons, five new shields, five new helmets and a new armor set; enough equipment to increase the level cap to 45.
Also: new areas to explore (dungeons), more details about the God King, new enemies for experienced users. Multiplayer mode won’t be available in next week’s update, and the developers didn’t provide a release date. I think January would be perfect.