Epic is to make an iOS-friendly version of its Unreal Engine dev kit available to all and sundry from Thursday.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the kit will feature new tools to help create whizz-bang visuals and animations on iOS systems.
It will be free to download but if you go ahead and publish a game you'll have to pay a $99 licensing fee and a 25 per cent royalty after the first $5,000 of sales.
"Apple's App Store is the most vibrant market for mobile gaming," said Epic CEO Mark Rein. "If you're going to make a game for a mobile device, and you want to make the most money, you're nuts not to make it for iOS."
Last week Epic released the phenomenally good Infinity Blade, the first mobile game to use the Unreal Engine. Eurogamer's Mark Brown awarded it 8/10.
Earlier this year Donald and Geremy Mustard, creative and technical directors at the game's developer Chair Entertainment told Eurogamer that they expected Gears of War-calibre games to be feasible on the iPhone in as soon as two years time using the Unreal tech.
"I didn't take [the iPhone] that seriously until we started making this game," Donald explained. "Now I'm like, 'Oh my goodness, this is literally going to be the best looking handheld game ever made'. It's way beyond what a DS or PSP could do.
"I think it's going to be an interesting future, especially if in two years we can really run Gears of War on an iPhone."
Geremy then added, "If not two years, then certainly five years. Well, it could be as soon as two years but within five years that will certainly be the case. It will at least be powerful enough to do that."