Giant Bomb News

102 Comments

The Gaming Stuff That Matters From Apple’s Event

Game Center gains new features and Mac-bound, plus big updates on laptops.

Apple designer Jony Ive did not walk out onto the stage today with an Apple-created controller, but there was plenty of gamer-relevant news that came out of Apple’s event this morning.

The ugly-but-functional Game Center application is coming to the Mac in the July-bound $19.99 Mountain Lion operating system update. Game Center handles friends, achievements, matchmaking, and has largely eliminated competition in that category, which used to be fractured across multiple applications with the same intentions. Some still exist, like Open Feint, but they're chiefly focused on developers with intentions to be on platforms like Android.

Game Center is also receiving a number of updates that coincide with Apple’s iOS 6 update, scheduled for a release this fall. There are now challenges, which are one-time, player-driven dares that can also be tied to achievements, if the developer chooses. It will also be connected to Facebook, making friend finding easier.

It’s unclear if these will be introduced early with Game Center on Mac, but one would expect it to be available on every platform eventually.

Apple also made a significant update to its MacBook Air line, upgrading the CPU with Intel’s Ivy Bridge processor and apparently beefing up its graphics abilities by as much as 60% (that's Apple's line) over the last model with an Intel HD 400. Complete specs are available on Apple’s website.

Apple's powerful new MacBook Pro probably won't be affordable for most, but it looks hot.

That’s nothing compared to the absurdly powerful “next generation” MacBook Pro that Apple introduced, complete with the gorgeous Retina Display that started on the iPhone and recently came to the iPad. This new MacBook Pro also includes a powerful GeForce GT 650M GPU. As with the Air, specs are available on Apple’s website.

Start counting your pennies, I guess.

Apple showed multiple applications to demonstrate the new screen, including Diablo III. One would assume there have been tweaks to the interface to accommodate the high-resolution screen, and I’ve sent a request to Blizzard for clarification.

The 13-inch and 15-inch traditional MacBook Pros were updated, as well, with the 17-inch model getting killed. Specs? You know the drill.

There was no mention of Apple TV at the event. Rumors had suggested Apple might open up an SDK for their living room device, allowing for developers to start writing applications directly to the Apple TV. That didn't happen.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
102 Comments
  • 102 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Posted by patrickklepek

Apple designer Jony Ive did not walk out onto the stage today with an Apple-created controller, but there was plenty of gamer-relevant news that came out of Apple’s event this morning.

The ugly-but-functional Game Center application is coming to the Mac in the July-bound $19.99 Mountain Lion operating system update. Game Center handles friends, achievements, matchmaking, and has largely eliminated competition in that category, which used to be fractured across multiple applications with the same intentions. Some still exist, like Open Feint, but they're chiefly focused on developers with intentions to be on platforms like Android.

Game Center is also receiving a number of updates that coincide with Apple’s iOS 6 update, scheduled for a release this fall. There are now challenges, which are one-time, player-driven dares that can also be tied to achievements, if the developer chooses. It will also be connected to Facebook, making friend finding easier.

It’s unclear if these will be introduced early with Game Center on Mac, but one would expect it to be available on every platform eventually.

Apple also made a significant update to its MacBook Air line, upgrading the CPU with Intel’s Ivy Bridge processor and apparently beefing up its graphics abilities by as much as 60% (that's Apple's line) over the last model with an Intel HD 400. Complete specs are available on Apple’s website.

Apple's powerful new MacBook Pro probably won't be affordable for most, but it looks hot.

That’s nothing compared to the absurdly powerful “next generation” MacBook Pro that Apple introduced, complete with the gorgeous Retina Display that started on the iPhone and recently came to the iPad. This new MacBook Pro also includes a powerful GeForce GT 650M GPU. As with the Air, specs are available on Apple’s website.

Start counting your pennies, I guess.

Apple showed multiple applications to demonstrate the new screen, including Diablo III. One would assume there have been tweaks to the interface to accommodate the high-resolution screen, and I’ve sent a request to Blizzard for clarification.

The 13-inch and 15-inch traditional MacBook Pros were updated, as well, with the 17-inch model getting killed. Specs? You know the drill.

There was no mention of Apple TV at the event. Rumors had suggested Apple might open up an SDK for their living room device, allowing for developers to start writing applications directly to the Apple TV. That didn't happen.

Staff
Edited by Ashenn

Apple kicking it out there. That new MacBook Air actually gets me interested in maybe getting an apple for my next laptop.

Posted by leejunfan83

Fuck Apple

Posted by JacDG

Man, I really like Apple and the design and all that, and the new Pro might actually be able to run games (?) but their products are just way too overpriced for me, got my laptop for less than half of the new pro, and I bet it's more or less as powerfull, maybe one day I will have enough money to blow off on stuff like this.

Posted by Zidd

Apple is the only company building next years laptops right now.

Posted by GalacticPunt

That $2200 Macbook Pro is attractive, but too damn much for what's under the hood.

I somehow hoped that Gabe would have walked out when they were talking about Game Center on Mac to announce some kind of Steam integration. "We heard you like achievements, so we put achievements in your achievements while you achieve!"

Posted by Hailinel

Is Apple TV used by enough people to make an SDK release worthwhile?

Posted by OllyOxenFree
@Zidd said:

Apple is the only company building next years laptops right now.

The future of ass fisting prices are now!
Posted by Rolyatkcinmai

I like how the comparison shot on the resolutions says "60 inch HDTV".

I suppose their target demographic doesn't realize size != resolution, and as such will be floored by that comparison.

Posted by Ewy

"Intel HD 400" should be '4000'. Super important, I know.

Posted by Animasta

gaming stuff that matters =/= apple.

sick burn I know

but seriously, game center is fine, but is a new laptop that just happens to be pretty powerful really worth mentioning? Just saying.

Posted by wewantsthering

@JacDG said:

Man, I really like Apple and the design and all that, and the new Pro might actually be able to run games (?) but their products are just way too overpriced for me, got my laptop for less than half of the new pro, and I bet it's more or less as powerfull, maybe one day I will have enough money to blow off on stuff like this.

In the realm of high-end laptops, they're actually pretty closely priced to Windows boxes of similar specs. Especially in the ultrabook category. Any of the Macbooks that don't only have the Intel 4000 will run games just fine. The 4000 would only be good for sub-60fps low-med quality.

Posted by SuperSonic1305

Gaming stuff that matters + Apple = oxymoron

Posted by Zidd

@OllyOxenFree: The macbook air cost more than this new macbook pro when it was first introduced. Now its under $1000.

Posted by dream431ca

ROFL! Apple and gaming. LOLOL!

Posted by Nate

Ok

Posted by wewantsthering

@Hailinel said:

Is Apple TV used by enough people to make an SDK release worthwhile?

I'm pretty sure it's the top selling IP set top box right now so yeah?

Posted by DukesT3

If you buy a Mac for games your doing it wrong.

Posted by wewantsthering

@LooseChange said:

If you buy a Mac for games your doing it wrong.

You're doing it wrong actually. :-) It's "you're" not "your." If you think that, you're in 1999 and only think about high-end gaming. Macs are just as capable for gaming as their Windows based laptops for the most part. A lot of games are released for OSX now and the rest can be played through bootcamp. Laptops aren't that great for gaming in general, no matter what brand. Consoles and high-end PCs are better for the more intensive games, while laptops are great for more casual stuff/games are lower res.

Posted by stinky

@GalacticPunt said:

That $2200 Macbook Pro is attractive, but too damn much for what's under the hood.

yeah why cant they have used the latest CPU thats out? or added the most recent display technology, or included latest thunderbolt ports?

Posted by Shivoa

Note on Intel 4000 graphics: 60% figure was given by Intel pre-release. Real world it isn't anything like that (especially in ULV where the iGPU spinning up will force the CPU to clock down to maintain the thermal envelope). See Anand for detailed articles.

Posted by Goldanas

I'm pretty much not an Apple guy, but some of the functionality of the video editing software and the garage band stuff is decent for the fact that it's included in the box (I still think Cubase is top notch for audio recording and editing though).

I'd be interested in getting a crazy powerful Mac for the purposes of editing, and maybe even development, but I don't know that I'd sink that much into the laptop when a 650M isn't "powerful" by any sense of the term. It's mediocre at best, but I would say that it's "powerful" when compared to other Apple hardware components. A 650M is like the equivalent of what would be a "630" for desktops. Not a whole lot of juice in that. Still, for the games I own on Steam that are also compatible with Mac, that'd probably be enough. That GPU really would only come in handy when using programs like Unity, UDK, or Game Salad to handle 3D rendering for development.

Is $2400 (when equipped with 16GB of RAM which would actually be somewhat useful for the listed purposes) actually worth it when you are just going to use it for that? Maybe, but only if you make money doing any of that stuff. Otherwise, get something else.

Posted by iAmJohn

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

Posted by dvorak

@iAmJohn said:

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

Nothing wrong with that. I spend most of my time on an 2-year old iMac running windows full time.

Posted by TechnoSyndrome

@leejunfan83 said:

Fuck Apple

Posted by Deusx

@iAmJohn said:

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

I´m not going to fight you. I can play more games though, just saying.

Edited by mrsmiley

All these PC fanboys are giving me a good laugh with the "LOL GAMES ON MACS" comments. Have you guys been living under a rock? People have been gaming on Apple hardware for years now, whether through Windows or not. I have a countless number of friends that use their MacBook Pros for gaming. MBPs are NOT far pricier than their PC equivalents, and they are almost always a helluva lot smaller and more energy efficient. If I'm to laugh at anyone it's the friends I have that still use "gaming laptops" that weigh just a few pounds less than desktop towers and cost almost as much as MBPs. It's not 2001 anymore. The whole "you can't game on Macs" thing is getting really old, and is frankly, completely untrue.

Posted by Maitimo

Game Centre is one of those really sad things that feels like it's there just to tick a box for the suits, like Zune.

(Not that any of this is at all compelling.)

Posted by umdesch4

That Game Center screenshot looks like a Geocities page. All it needs is animated gif wobbly arrows for navigation.

Posted by Nephrahim

Geforce 650M eh? That's a pretty decent card, but nothing that's going to set the world on fire.

As someone who doesn't use macs none of this are that interesting. I'm sure this comments section is about to devolved into a Mac Vs PC flamewar though.

Posted by SpudBug

Nothing relating to apple and gaming matters. Sloppy touch controls don't matter Overpriced, trendy, heavily marketed pc hardware doesn't matter. I don't really understand paying that much for a laptop. For $2,100 you could build a more capable desktop and still buy a moderate laptop to bring with you anywhere. I'm satisfied with a powerful desktop and an iPad for portable use, but some may need certain capabilities a tablet can't fulfill. Still, $800 for a laptop and $1000 for a desktop should satisfy almost any average user's needs..

Edited by Phatmac

The new mac books look hot, but are way too much for me. Other than that this wasn't that big of an event. Hoping that the Iphone 5 comes out soon!

Posted by wewantsthering

@mrsmiley said:

All these PC fanboys are giving me a good laugh with the "LOL GAMES ON MACS" comments. Have you guys been living under a rock? People have been gaming on Apple hardware for years now, whether through Windows or not. I have a countless number of friends that use their MacBook Pros for gaming. MBPs are NOT far pricier than their PC equivalents, and they are almost always a helluva lot smaller and more energy efficient. If I'm to laugh at anyone it's the friends I have that still use "gaming laptops" that weigh just a few pounds less than desktop towers and cost almost as much as MBPs. It's not 2001 anymore. The whole "you can't game on Macs" thing is getting really old, and is frankly, completely untrue.

Exactly. I hate all forms of fanoys. :-) Most people who love a particular platform so intensely haven't actually researched anything else. The same goes for religion, music, and movies. I have a Mac, PC, Xbox, Wii, and a PS3. So basically everyone should just spend way too much money like me and have it all! ;-)

Posted by Nephrahim

Actualy, real talk: are they saying this macbook pro can run Diablo III at 2880x1800? That's a pretty high resolution.

I'm not sure if I should be impressed or call BS.

Edited by LordCmdrStryker

@mrsmiley said:

All these PC fanboys are giving me a good laugh with the "LOL GAMES ON MACS" comments. Have you guys been living under a rock? People have been gaming on Apple hardware for years now, whether through Windows or not. I have a countless number of friends that use their MacBook Pros for gaming. MBPs are NOT far pricier than their PC equivalents, and they are almost always a helluva lot smaller and more energy efficient. If I'm to laugh at anyone it's the friends I have that still use "gaming laptops" that weigh just a few pounds less than desktop towers and cost almost as much as MBPs. It's not 2001 anymore. The whole "you can't game on Macs" thing is getting really old, and is frankly, completely untrue.

The lady doth protest too much, methinks. Also, if you're a member of the illustrious Mac Laptop Gaming Master Race, what do you care what the lowly PC peons think? You can just ignore them and go back to playing... what games are on Mac again?

BTW, if you have "countless friends" who game on their Macbooks, you should practice counting.

Posted by LordCmdrStryker

@SamDrugbringer said:

Actualy, real talk: are they saying this macbook pro can run Diablo III at 2880x1800? That's a pretty high resolution.

I'm not sure if I should be impressed or call BS.

Considering it only has 1 GB of VRAM I'm 99% sure it's BS. It can scale up from a lower resolution easily enough, though.

Posted by Peanut

Baaaaaaaaaah! Baaaaaaaaah!

Posted by iAmJohn

@Deusx said:

@iAmJohn said:

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

I´m not going to fight you. I can play more games though, just saying.

Boot camp, dawg. Been playing Max Payne 3 almost maxed out, it's great.

Posted by LordCmdrStryker

@iAmJohn said:

almost maxed out

That's unfortunate.

Posted by Enigma777

Apple won E3.

Online
Posted by TadThuggish

Nope.

Posted by Xeirus

@LordCmdrStryker said:

@SamDrugbringer said:

Actualy, real talk: are they saying this macbook pro can run Diablo III at 2880x1800? That's a pretty high resolution.

I'm not sure if I should be impressed or call BS.

Considering it only has 1 GB of VRAM I'm 99% sure it's BS. It can scale up from a lower resolution easily enough, though.

Yeah, complete bull, but it's nice of them to dream big though.

Posted by wumbo3000

I might have to donate both my lungs to afford any of this stuff.

Posted by iAmJohn

@LordCmdrStryker said:

@iAmJohn said:

almost maxed out

That's unfortunate.

Do you really need much more than 2x anti-aliasing? It's looking and running fine to me.

Posted by mrsmiley

@LordCmdrStryker said:

@mrsmiley said:

All these PC fanboys are giving me a good laugh with the "LOL GAMES ON MACS" comments. Have you guys been living under a rock? People have been gaming on Apple hardware for years now, whether through Windows or not. I have a countless number of friends that use their MacBook Pros for gaming. MBPs are NOT far pricier than their PC equivalents, and they are almost always a helluva lot smaller and more energy efficient. If I'm to laugh at anyone it's the friends I have that still use "gaming laptops" that weigh just a few pounds less than desktop towers and cost almost as much as MBPs. It's not 2001 anymore. The whole "you can't game on Macs" thing is getting really old, and is frankly, completely untrue.

The lady doth protest too much, methinks. Also, if you're a member of the illustrious Mac Laptop Gaming Master Race, what do you care what the lowly PC peons think? You can just ignore them and go back to playing... what games are on Mac again?

BTW, if you have "countless friends" who game on their Macbooks, you should practice counting.

Ahh yes, the good old "well you don't have to read it!" argument. it never gets old. for the record, i DO NOT game on a macbook pro, nor to i own an apple computer. yup, i'm a PC gamer and not an apple fanboy. strange then that i am able to think logically and realistically then when it comes to topics like this! crazy, right?! i'm actually able to compare prices and specs on websites for myself to see the facts. sorry, i'm not going to give a serious response to someone who didn't actually read my post thoroughly.

Posted by Shivoa

@iAmJohn said:

@Deusx said:

@iAmJohn said:

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

I´m not going to fight you. I can play more games though, just saying.

Boot camp, dawg. Been playing Max Payne 3 almost maxed out, it's great.

That's great, that game isn't very demanding on passable hardware. It's a shame the underclocked AMD 6770M (assuming you got the best MBP model for gaming) in that laptop can't hit 60fps on high, let alone Ultra settings, in demanding games; otherwise you could crank up the graphics in whatever you could play on it.

It's not a bad laptop, but Apple have yet to release a gaming focussed laptop (the 'power' in this new one can barely deal with that resolution at low settings so will be upscaling 1440x900 games most of the time (to enable high settings), completely removing the benefit of that nice screen when using it for gaming) and so people who buy from other places will be able to spend the money on high end GPUs (GTX680M being the just released king of laptops which can really play games coming close to desktop users expectations). No one wants to fight you, but if you buy a laptop just for games then other vendors (sounds like you're running Windows either way to get access to DirectX for gaming) can offer more for less. There are obviously many non-gaming related reasons to go for Apple.

Posted by scottkanex

@iAmJohn: I'm actually rocking last year's iMac for gaming and once you enable bootcamp it's well above console performance for most games. Just curious though what kind of framerate are you getting on something like Diablo 3? I can run it at 1080p at least but am really curious if the MBP with the intel chipset would be noticeably worse.

Posted by Lava

@iAmJohn said:

My gaming PC is last year's 15-inch MacBook Pro. Fight me, motherfuckers.

No fight required. I am using a Mid 2009 MacBook Pro and it runs games just fine. If not at the highest quality I can still play StarCraft II, Limbo, Bastion, and a bunch more stuff from Steam. It works, that's what counts.

Posted by bassman2112

I own a 2011 Macbook Pro 15", and my response to this is a resounding "meh."

I don't like Macs, I think they're too expensive, too fragile, all image & little substance. I only use one because my school forces you to get one. For some things it works well, but often times I simply use my Desktop PC for everything.

If you're going to spend that much money, just invest in a good desktop and a cheap tablet to take on the road.

Edited by umdesch4

@mrsmiley said:

i'm actually able to compare prices and specs on websites for myself to see the facts. sorry, i'm not going to give a serious response to someone who didn't actually read my post thoroughly.

You lost me right there. I dunno about price comparisons and specs on websites, but I do know that I have a Toshiba laptop in my house, purchased recently at Best Buy, that happens to have a quad core i7 2.7 GHz with 8MB of cache. From what I'm seeing on the Apple site, this is the best CPU available for the new Macbook Pro. The difference is, this Toshiba was under $500*. The rest of the hardware seems roughly in the same ballpark to me, but that price isn't the same ballpark, or even the same game.

I'm not a fanboy of anything, I'm just a cheap bastard. Apple makes some really cool stuff, but it's WAY out of my price range most of the time. I'd like to see some price/spec comparison that could convince me otherwise.

* Canadian dollars, after taxes, environmental surcharges, and extended 3-year warranty.

  • 102 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3