First spotted by Kotaku, it appears that Epic Games, developer of the Gears of War series for Xbox 360 and the Unreal Engine used to power many console and mobile games, may be working on an additional Infinity Blade sequel appropriately titled “Infinity Blade 3 for iPhone.” According to a Senior QA Tester’s LinkedIn profile, Epic’s iOS publishing arm, ChAIR, looks to be in the midst of either development or beta testing for a new Infinity Blade title to follow the studio’s last release, Infinity Blade II.
A prequel to the popular series entitled Infinity Blade: Dungeons was demonstrated by Epic Games at Apple’s iPad (3) with Retina Display announcement earlier last year, but the title still has yet to see the light of day. Infinity Blades: Dungeons was expected to launch sometime in the later half of 2012, but the company pushed back development of the title and then officially canceled the project earlier this year, squashing little remaining hope for the action-RPG’s eventual release.
Kotaku reports that major changes have been afoot at Epic Games since Chinese internet giant Tencent acquired a 40 percent stake in June 2012. Such a change in Epic’s management may have pushed back development of certain titles and may have even been responsible for Impossible Games (the studio responsible for Infinity Blade: Dungeons development) closure earlier this year. Tencent is often associated with an assortment of freemium titles, so many have wondered if Epic couldn’t find a way to bring such a model to Infinity Blade: Dungeons or if it may show up in a future release in the series. A freemium model would put the pay-to-play series in the same position as Real Racing 3, which was originally a pay-to-play title but then turned to a freemium model when the series’ developer Firemint was acquired by EA.
ChAIR has been unusually quiet since the release of the final content pack for Infinity Blade II last August, but Kotaku believes that the development of Infinity Blade 3 may be more of a reality than rumor due to nods from the company’s newly appointed Community Manager, Hilary Goldstein. In his first blog post as Community Manager, Goldstein hinted that fans may see a new tile in the coming months. If that’s true, we may actually see Infinity Blade 3 demoed alongside Apple’s latest hardware come this fall as with previous installments in the series. It’s also interesting to note that iOS7 will officially support third-party game controllers, and although the Infinity Blade is known for its touch-and-slash gameplay, we could see suport for more traditional controls as well.