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iOS hit Infinity Blade gets sequel, book

Plugged In

One of the best looking mobile games ever is getting a sequel.

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Infinity Blade II (Epic Games)

Epic Games took to the stage today during Apple's iPhone 5, er, 4S event today to show off Infinity Blade 2, which is due out December 1. And the update goes far beyond graphical tweaks.

The game will add new locations, new enemies and new bosses — but you probably already guessed that was coming. The game will also support iOS 5 features like iCloud, letting players save their games and profiles on multiple devices. Left unrevealed was pricing for Infinity Blade 2. The original currently sells for $5.99.

The game will also introduce new online features, including one called "Clash Mob," where players will work together in what Epic calls "massively social" challenges to unlock rare weapons and items. Check it out in action:

Meanwhile, Infinity Blade will join the small circle of apps that have embraced the trans-media movement. A book, based on the game's mythology, was written by New York Times best-selling fantasy author Brandon Sanderson and is now available via the iBookstore for $2.99.

There's a reason Epic and Apple are pushing Infinity Blade 2 this heavily. The first game was a massive success, with sales topping $10 million in their first six months. (It set sales records upon release, making more than $1.6 million in the first four days.)

And Apple is substantially boosting its marketing of iOS devices as gaming machines.

"Not only is [the iPod Touch] the most popular music player in the world, but we're excited to announce it's now also the most popular portable game player in the world," boasted Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide product marketing at Apple.

The iPhone 4S is adding a dual-core graphics chip, which Apple said would be up to seven times faster than the iPhone 4.

"One area you really see it scream is in games," said Schiller.

That's potentially bad news for Nintendo and Sony, which have already seen Apple's products steal market share away from their handheld systems. The Oct. 14 release of the iPhone 4S could well impact holiday sales of both the 3DS and PlayStation Vita.

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