Developers amp up games and apps to go with new Retina iPad

Mar 16, 2012
Games

The new iPad is upon (some of) us, complete with its glorious Retina display that has been almost universally touted as being a huge improvement over that of its predecessors. And to go with those shiny new pixels – a million more than are packed into an HDTV, says Apple – many developers are releasing […]

The new iPad is upon (some of) us, complete with its glorious Retina display that has been almost universally touted as being a huge improvement over that of its predecessors. And to go with those shiny new pixels – a million more than are packed into an HDTV, says Apple – many developers are releasing enhanced versions of their apps to take advantage of what the new iPad can do.

Apple has organized a pretty comprehensive list of the greatest hits into a special section of the iTunes App Store, available in the “iPad” tab at the top of the page. Listed under “Great Apps for the New iPad,” it includes a healthy mix of games, e-reading applications, tools and video and photography apps that can really leverage the visual strength of the device. All of these apps have received substantial work from their development teams to get them ready to go for the new iPad’s launch.

Gorgeous games

In games, new iPad owners should definitely be on the lookout for some of the biggest names in the App Store. ChAIR’s Infinity Blade II, widely known for its beautiful graphics, is among the optimized titles, and Gameloft has announced four games that have received work to bring up their visuals: Order & Chaos Online, Modern Combat 3: Fallen Nation, Asphalt 6: Adrenaline and Gangstar Rio: City of Saints. Gameloft is also running a big sale in conjunction with the new device’s release, as is Electronic Arts.

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League of Evil 2 developer Ravenous Games recently tweeted an example image that puts into stark relief the kind of work a lot of developers likely have had to put into getting their apps ready to go. Assets – the artwork and images used in apps – have to be made much bigger and, really, more detailed in order to accommodate the higher resolution of Apple’s new device. That also translates into some substantially bigger file sizes, and it means lots of developers have been toiling away at their apps and assets in order to get them ready to look much prettier today.

Amazing apps

Outside of the games realm, a lot of other useful apps have gotten a revamp that should make users very happy. One of the things several reviewers cited the new iPad as handling very well with its higher resolution was text, so readers will be excited to give apps such as Amazon’s Kindle and Readability a go on the new device. A number of publications, such as The Daily and The New Yoirk Times, have also come in prepared for their publications to push the limit with the iPad’s new hardware.

Finally, there are a few apps that might be worth a new look, considering the iPad’s improvements in photography and video. Obviously, Apple was at the ready with its iPhoto app, which is specifically designed to leverage the iPad to not only take photos, but to edit them as well. Another app, iStop Motion for iPad, has been optimized for the Retina display and may well let users put their iPad cameras to new and interesting uses, creating stop-motion and time-lapse videos with a tablet.

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More apps will undoubtedly be updated over the next few weeks and months that will give new iPad owners even more to do. But the process can be time-consuming for developers, so it’s best to try and be patient. In the meantime, there are lots of apps ready to put the new device through its paces, no matter what you use your iPad to do.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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