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Epic: iPad 2 "fantastic for gaming"

Apple device "already a portable games console" - Rein

The iPad 2 is "already is a portable games console" according to Epic Games' Mark Rein, who enthused about the newly announced device to website VentureBeat.

"As they keep improving this thing. If they can do this every single year with iPad it's not too many years before they'll be able to power that next generation demo we've been showing off at GDC," said Rein in reference to the company's new technology demonstration.

The iPad 2 was officially announced last night at a series of events around the world. It will be released on 11th March in the U.S. but on 25th March in Europe - the same day as the Nintendo 3DS.

Apple describes the device's new graphics chip and dual-core A5 processor as having "nine times" the power of the original iPad, as well as being thinner, lighter and featuring an HDMI output for output to televisions and monitors.

"The technical specs are phenomenal but then to have it lighter, to have a video camera, no raise in price. I mean Apple just blows us away every single time," commented Rein.

"This is something I talked about where you'd walk around with your game console and when you get in a room with a TV you'll see it on your TV. Now well now Apple's made that a reality."

"More CPU means potentially more physics, more enemies on the screen, a wider view of the environment. It's just really fantastic. And our engine is uniquely sorted to go from everything from iPhone 3GS to all the way beyond anything you can build today," he added.

"That's what we're showing at our both at GDC, our next generation proposal, what we think that next giant leap should be. The way Apple's going they will be part of that story down the road, as they keep improving this thing."

Rather than the power of the device the greatest barrier to creating games on iOS formats is generally seen as the lack of physical buttons and controls, which Rein also addressed.

"It doesn't have the same control scheme but it has something that's different in an interesting way. Infinity Blade isn't really a game we'd make for a console you'd play with your thumbs it's designed for the touch experience."

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David Jenkins