TiPb's developer spotlights are like DVD/iTunes Extras for the App Store -- a weekly look behind the scenes at the programers and designers that bring you the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad apps and games you love. This week Rene talks with Robert Murray of Firemint.
What's your name? Robert Murray
What's your company's name? Firemint
Where are you located? Richmond, Victoria, Australia, not too far from Melbourne proper.
What's your website address? www.firemint.com
What's your Twitter ID? @firemint
What apps do you make? Firemint's two big IPs are Flight Control and Real Racing. Both games are available on iPhone and iPad, and we developed a sequel to Real Racing, Real Racing 2, which was released in December 2010.
Our most recent title is Real Racing 2 HD, optimized for iPad 2. Not long ago we put out an update that adds 1080p dual screen support, so you can sit on the couch and play while the action is displayed on your TV. At the same time, your device shows your lap times, position and speed. It’s quite a sight to behold, and an entirely new way to experience the game.
Agent Squeek is our next massive title, due out this year on iOS. It features a suave cheese-loving mouse who's lively imagination casts him in the role of a secret agent.
How long have you been a developer? Firemint has been around since 1999, though it began trading under the name nDimensional Software. Firemint really started growing as an independent game developer in 2003.
How long have you been an iOS developer? Our first original game was Flight Control in May 2009, however, we started work on Real Racing in May 2008.
Do you develop for any other platform in addition to iOS? If so, which one(s)? In the past, we've developed for a range of platforms including the N-Gage and Gameboy Advance. While Firemint's focus in recent times has been iOS, we've released Flight Control on a variety of hardware - Nintendo DS, Windows, Mac OS X, Android, Windows Phone 7 and PlayStation 3.
What iOS device(s) do you personally use? I use an iPhone 3GS for phone calls, SMS, and browsing and gaming on the run. I use an iPad when I am at home or in meetings for gaming, browsing and email.
What's your favorite thing about developing for iOS? It's great having a unified set of platforms to develop for, as well as a robust publishing process that gives us a lot of control over how our games are released.
What do you do when you're not coding iOS apps? Thinking about new ones! :) I should mention that I really don't have time to do hands-on coding, the last time I did was when I made the first version of Flight Control, and I had to do that on my holidays. However I'm still very much involved in design and production and I still look forward to finding some time in the future to pull out the keyboard and some Red Bull.
What should we look for from you next? Agent Squeek! We're looking to release it this year on iOS, and we're extremely excited about it. The depth really sneaks up on you, it'll definitely take a lot of people by surprise... a bit like Squeek himself!
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