Apple recruiting team for ‘super secret’ videogames project?

“Online reports are indicating that Apple is recruiting a team to work on a videogames project at the company, with former LucasArts technical director Mike Lampell said to be heading up the secret division,” Rob Fahey reports for GamesIndustry.biz. “That’s according to US website GameSpot, which reported on the existence of the division thanks to a tip-off from a source described as a tech-sector recruiter, who revealed that games industry engineers were being recruited by Apple.”

“At present, Apple has little engagement with the games market; a small number of titles are released on the various Mac platforms through publishers such as Aspyr, and a few companies such as Blizzard regularly release Mac ports of their PC titles, but the platform is not seen as a major market for games,” Fahey reports. “On the handheld side, the iPod may recently have added video playback, but it has only a few simple built-in games – and Apple has shown no particular desire to expand that repertoire… According to GameSpot’s report, the brief of Apple’s rumoured games team is specifically to work within the iTunes division – implying that the games will be digitally distributed by Apple itself, and may be compatible with the iPod devices.”

Full article here.

“GameSpot learned that there may be more to the Apple-game rumors than mere Mac-mad daydreams. A tech-sector recruiter contacted the GS NewsDesk with an interesting story of a prospective hire that got away. Recently, when said recruiter made an offer to a software engineer, the engineer turned the offer down–saying he was being ‘heavily recruited by Apple.’ According to the engineer, an Apple hiring manager named Mike Lampell is heading up a group inside Apple’s storied iTunes division. The group is specifically hiring for “C/C++ coders with a ‘gaming background.’” The engineer says the project in question was described to him as ‘super secret,’ and Apple would not even tell him the exact nature of it until he had been hired and signed a non-disclosure agreement,” GameSpot reports.

Full article here.

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28 Comments

  1. Yes, in ‘Steve Jobs: Master of the Universe’ the players get to pretent to be SJ. They start getting dressed — picking just the right black mock turtleneck to go with the perfect pair of faded jeans. Bonus rounds include tearing down historic homes.

    It would be nice to see Apple do well in the gaming business by capitalizing on the company’s cool factor.

  2. If Apple enter this market, they have a unique platform.
    Through iTunes they can sell games which will be compatible for PC’s, Macs, and iPods – particularly the larger-screened iPod which is probably coming this year.
    They don’t have to be state-of-the-art games.
    2D-games, if they’re good, are a lot of fun.
    (I still play Snood, Apeiron X, Pack the Man, and diverse card games.)
    Even if they just start with a handful of games, it would be a great bonus for the iPod.
    Along with Podcasts, music videos, television programmes, and the Nike ‘connection’, the addition of games will make the iPod even more attractive, while still remaining essentially a music player.

  3. cool. It will be tricky business for Apple to try and establish a new rep for games. If they produce anything other than excellence, then they will be whipped by the media and gaming mags. A lot of people in that industry are just looking for a reason to tlk trash about Apple. But it would be so cool if they managed a game as big as Halo.

  4. Seems logical that handheld games consoles could be an area where the iPod’s domination could be threatened in the longer run so such a move would be long overdue if it is true. With so many users buiding up of the video iPod with big increases over the next year one would presume that the time will soon be here when a market for iPod games could start to become rather substantial and external deveelopers would be more than interested to get involved. It would be typical of Apple to decide to be there at the start, get a chunk of the action and show others the creative possibilities for the device.

    I suspect the main concentration however will be on what will become the true video iPod whenever that breaks cover at which time iPod will inevitably be mixing it with handheld gaming devices like it or not. And with a big juicy screen available it would be a shame not to exploit it.

  5. i dont think apple would ever go down the path of a dedicated games console, or need to, but i think having more games compatible for the mac is a very sensible thing, most of your customers are kids, so introducing them to the mac platform is only a good thing.
    It would be just one more reason to get a mac.

    with next generation intel chips debuting soon enough, a mac will be perfect for gaming.

  6. “…and Apple would not even tell him the exact nature of it until he had been hired and signed a non-disclosure agreement,”

    Like and NDA even matters anymore based on last week’s court ruling.

    That Apple is looking to add games to their arsenal should come as no surprise.

  7. If a full screen iPod with a touch screen comes out it is pretty clear that this team will be developing for this platform. It would be ideal too given the screen size would be similar to the PSP.

    An interesting twist would be to develop games which play both on a Mac computer and a wireless enabled iPod. If you use the games on the computer the controller could be the iPod itself. You would naturally access the games through frontrow.

    Tim

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