'Epic Zen Garden' Metal Demo Shown Off at WWDC Now Available for Download

At its Worldwide Developers Conference in June, Apple unveiled Metal, an API designed to improve game performance on iOS. Epic Games took the stage during the event to show off Epic Zen Garden, a game built using the Unreal 4 Engine and the Metal API.

The game, which was designed to show off the impressive graphic enhancement features possible with Metal, demonstrated an expansive world with a fully interactive environment. Users could touch a tree to send a cascade of leaves and cherry blossoms swirling to the ground or interact with a group of koi fish.

epiczengarden
As of today, Epic Zen Garden is available for download, letting users see some of the things that will be possible in iOS games in the near future. The game supports a resolution of 1440 x 1080 at 30fps, and can display 3,500 butterflies at once. One of the major features of Metal is that it allows for more draw calls, letting a huge number of objects be displayed on the screen.

Epic Zen Garden is a beautiful graphical environment showcasing the power of iOS 8, developed by Epic Games with Unreal Engine 4. Tap to navigate this interactive oasis brimming unmatched detail on mobile. Swipe the Sakura tree to make thousands of cherry blossoms swirl in the air, graze the koi pond to summon leagues of fish, and rake the sand with your finger to create subtle designs. Touch the well to bring throngs of butterflies out of hiding.

More information on how Metal works, Epic Zen Garden and the Unreal Engine 4 can be seen in the video below.


Epic Zen Garden can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

(Thanks, Eli!)

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Top Rated Comments

doelcm82 Avatar
127 months ago
Why is this front page news?
Probably to annoy you.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
teslo Avatar
127 months ago
whatever. i don't play my games with any less than 4,000 butterflies.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
melb00m Avatar
127 months ago
Compatibility:
Requires iOS 8.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Air, iPad Air Wi-Fi + Cellular, iPad mini with Retina display, and iPad mini with Retina display Wi-Fi + Cellular. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

so which is it?

It requires the A7, so it's iPhone 5s and up. "optimized for iPhone 5" was introduced to indicate that the App is optimized for a 4" screen during the iPhone 4s to 5 transition. I think this information will be removed soon, and the wording is really misleading.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lordskelic Avatar
127 months ago
Makes me think of Epic Citidel which came out back when the iPhone 4 was the big thing. I believe it was showing off Unreal Engine 3 at the time.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macduke Avatar
127 months ago
I've love to know, just what spec of 'PC' this graphical power is equal to.

The PowerVR G6430 is shipping in the A7. It has a peak output of about 115 GFLOPS. For comparison, the original Xbox GPU is about 6 GFLOPS, the Xbox 360 GPU is about 240 GFLOPS, and the Xbox One is around 1300 GFLOPS. The A8 was stated to be 50% faster, so we're talking around 170 GFLOPS, which is about 70% the speed of an Xbox 360. This is why they still have to fake a lot to get things running up to par visually. That all being said, I hope they limit 3D games on the iPhone Plus to 720p and crank up other things like the lighting effects, etc. The iPhone has twice the RAM of the Xbox 360, so you might be able squeak out some last gen games that look decent running at 720p. A fast motion game isn't going to look vastly different in your hand at 720p vs. native 1080p. Those differences are more noticeable on a larger TV. What is really interesting is the 6S. Assuming a similar 50% bump in GPU performance, it will slightly surpass last-gen consoles and will likely ship with 2GB of ram (well we also said that about the 6 so who knows). But still, 3D gaming on the iPhone is really going to come into it's own. And with Metal, we might be able to get more performance out of them by comparison to consoles.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Col4bin Avatar
127 months ago
damnit USA, you are always ahead.

We drive the boat Chief. :cool:
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)