Carmack: Working With Apple Is a Rollercoaster Ride

John Carmack has a long history working with Apple on gaming products, not all of it positive.

"My relationship with Apple has been long standing, but it's a rollercoaster ride," he told Kotaku. "I'll be invited up on stage for a keynote one month and then I'll say something they don't like and I can be blacklisted for six months."

Working with Apple on iPhone games has been no different, Carmack said, but he is happy to see that former collaborator Graeme Devine is now working at Apple in the iPhone Game Technologies division.

Devine worked at id Software from 1999 to 2003, producing and programming on a number of games including Quake III, Doom 3 and Return to Castle Wolfenstein. Devine went on to Ensemble Studios where he worked on Age of Empires 3 and Halo Wars before that studio was shut down.

Earlier this year he moved to Apple.

"Graeme Devine is in a significant position as a game developer at Apple," Carmack said. "I have a real man on the inside now. We knew each other from way back in the day.

"He's a real developer and I understand everything he is saying."

Devine's role at Apple doesn't mean that Carmack's dealings with the company has gotten any less bumpy though. Doom Classic was rejected twice before Apple allowed it to appear in the store with some minor changes.

Carmack thinks the run-ins with Apple are because the company, the highest people in the company, look down on games. But the popularity of gaming on the iPhone has forced Apple to try and come to grips with that, even if they're not happy about it.

"At the highest level of Apple, in their heart of hearts," Carmack said, "they're not proud of the iPhone being a game machine, they wish it was something else."