Entries in Real Racing 2 HD (2)

Real Racing and Flight Control creator Firemint give us their thoughts on iPad 2

Real Racing 2 HD is without doubt the best racing experience on the iPad. The handling is spot on and the graphics are quite sublime. Firemint were one of the first developers to give a taster of what the iPad 2's A5 chipset is capable of. Given that Real Racing 2 HD was one of the first apps to offer 1080p output to HDMI we thought we would drop them an email to get their thoughts on how the iPad 2 stands in relation to current game consoles, the hurdles encountered when moving from XGA to 1080P output resolution and some of the more interesting features of the A5 chipset. Read on:

iPC: Do you have any general observations about the performance of the iPad 2's A5 chipset? How close is it to the current consoles in terms of polygon fill rate, etc.?

Firemint: The gap between tablets and consoles has certainly narrowed with the release of the iPad 2. However, in terms of power, fill rate and polygon throughput it still has a way to go to compete with the top performing consoles. That said, the iPad is a very different platform altogether and the new chipset has allowed us to bring some very compelling visuals to players.

iPC: Regarding video out: How well does performance scale when resolution is increased? For example is there much of a difference in final frame rate between RR2 HD on the iPad's own display, outputting at 720p or 1080p?

Firemint: Increasing the resolution naturally demands more processing power, but how much depends on the amount of code that operates on a per-pixel level, how fill rate-limited the application is, etc. Real Racing 2 HD was heavily optimized for iPad so going from its native resolution to 1080p was very achievable.

iPC: We're heard that full screen anti-aliasing can be added to iPad 2 games without incurring any performance hit, any comments on this?

Firemint: While it’s not entirely free the iPad 2 chipset has allowed us to use full screen anti-aliasing in Real Racing 2 HD at a very acceptable performance level.

Interesting stuff. We were particularly intrigued by the comments regarding increasing the resolution to 1080p. If you remember we mentioned that it seems almost inevitable that Apple will move the iPad to a 'Retina' class display next year. Some have wondered if the A5 could even handle that huge jump in pixel count, well it certainly seems entirely possible, and that's without the extra horsepower that an Apple A6 chipset might bring in 2012.

Thanks guys, and congratulations on your EA buyout, we're hoping you get to work your magic on the Burnout franchise!

Real Racing 2 HD not looking so special on your new iPad 2? This might help

Real Racing 2 HD is a flagship game for Apple's A5 powered iPad 2. The massive increase in graphics rendering power provided by the SXG543MP2 chip gives RR2 HD a new lick of paint compared to the iPad 1 version. Realtime reflections, rock solid frame rates and full screen anti-aliasing make RR2 HD a perfect vehicle to show out your new iPad 2, or so we thought...

After restoring the iPad 2 from a saved iPad 1 backup (via iTunes) we fired up Real Racing 2 HD fully expecting to be blown away. What we saw was almost exactly like what we had just previously witnessed on the iPad 1, where was the silky smooth frame and the anti-aliasing?

After much investigation we drew a blank, either the problem was very rare indeed, or simply hadn't been noticted and documented yet. Out of frustration we searched on Twitter for the term, 'aliasing'. A-ha! Though not an answer to our problem, Robert Sammons had made a similar observation about the poor quality of RR2 HD on the iPad 2. A few messages back and forth and we soon had a solution.

WARNING: Deleting and reinstalled RR2 HD will erase all your save game data.

Delete Real Racing 2 HD from your iPad 2 and reinstall it via iPad's own App Store app. We have no idea why this works, though we are guessing that the game only checks to see what version of the iPad it's running on when it's launched for the very first time, meaning that the code is optimised for the iPad 1's graphics chip rather than the new SGX543MP2 that powers the iPad 2. Reinstalling seems to correct this issue. RR2 HD running in its full glory on an iPad 2 is a sight to behold, and is easily the best racing experience on the iPad so far.

We take no responsibility for any loss of game data. However if you are using Game Center with RR2 HD you can restore all your saved data. Here's how:

On the home screen, the first screen after the intro movie, tap on your Game Center name in the top righthand side of the screen. Then under Player Settings tap Restore Save and select and restore the most recent backup. It would be well worth checking that you actually do have a saved game data file on Game Center before deleting and reinstalling.

Many thanks to Robert Sammons for his help in finding a solution.