Id Software is "vaguely" working on a pair of iPhone projects according to technical director and co-founder John Carmack.
"We're probably going to be making some moves to do some iPhone development," Carmack told the audience at QuakeCon 2008 during his keynote address.
"We have two different projects that are at least vaguely in the works for the iPhone," he said. The first is "an extension of our mobile stuff", he said, but the other is "the graphical tour de force" and "unexpectedly exciting".
Carmack had a lot of good things to say about the iPhone, although he joked that it's "a rollercoaster ride with Apple as always". "They'll make nice with me when they want me to come out and do a keynote," he said. But he clearly likes it.
"I'm really saddened that we don't have an iPhone product out now, because I think Apple is doing so many things well right now and I think they're going to be a really positive force."
Id Software had looked at porting Orcs & Elves to iPhone, said Carmack, but decided against it in the end because the small company couldn't spare the resource. Carmack estimated that it would have taken "three man months" to do.
Apple doesn't "really, deeply get games", he said, but he approves of the iTunes App Store. "You can actually show people why the hell they should buy your game," he pointed out, which puts it at odds with other platforms.
He also respects the hardware, pointing out that you could conceivably make a USD 10 million game for it. "It's more powerful than the PSP and DS put together," he told the audience.