Doom daddy John Carmack thinks there’s a chance that Nintendo’s 3DS and Sony’s NGP could be the last generation of specialising handheld consoles, due to the rise of smartphone gaming.
And while dedicated machines will always boast better controls and more specialised features than a do-all mobile phone, the developer thinks people will put up with touchscreens and lower quality games simply because they only want to carry one device.
“People are going to carry their smart phone, and if it’s an 80 percent gaming device, how many people in the gaming market will be satisfied with that?” Carmack said, in an interview with the studio’s local Dallas News paper. “That’s the question that’s in everybody’s mind, and I really don’t know.”
As for game prices, where smartphone apps are usually a few pounds rather than £30 for a DS or PSP game, Carmack said, "if that's what the consumers are going to trend towards on there, there may not be much as developers we can do about that."
The part-time rocket scientist recently showed off exactly what the iPhone is capable of with Rage, an on-rails point-scoring shooter designed to show off the portable possibilities of the company’s id tech 5 engine.