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New book: 3D for iPhone Apps with Blender and SIO2


3D for iPhone Apps with Blender and SIO2Tony Mullen announced his upcoming book on iPhone game development with Blender and the SIO2 game engine.

Tony Mullen wrote:

Hi Everybody,

I'm very pleased to announce that my latest book is available for pre-order at Amazon! The book is titled "3D for iPhone Apps with Blender and SIO2: Your Guide to Creating 3D Games and More with Open-Source Software" and you can pre-order it here.

As you can see from the title, the book deals with using Blender and the powerful SIO2 Game Engine to create 3D games and apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch. I can tell you first hand that it's a blast! The book does not assume any specific background knowledge, so in that sense it's intended for "beginners". There's even an appendix giving a quick and dirty basic introduction to Blender itself. However, you should be aware that the material is challenging and the pace is pretty brisk, so any background you do have in Blender or graphics programming will be very helpful for you. It does assume some basic understanding of programming, so if you're new to programming in general, then you should be prepared to turn to supplemental resources to get you through any difficult patches.

I've had a great time writing this book. Big thanks to everyone at the SIO2 forums who helped me (knowingly or unknowingly) and also of course very big thanks to the Peach and Apricot teams for providing some of the assets that I used in demos and tutorials (and cover art, as you can see!)

I'm very excited about this book and I think people are really going to have fun with it. I'm looking forward to a lot of awesome new Blender/SIO2 3D games to show up on the iTunes Store!

The only downside of this book is that it is pretty much only for Mac users. Unfortunately, at present Linux and Windows users are a bit shut out of the iPhone development world. However, I'm working on another project right now that I think will be of great interest to all Blender users, so readers of my other books who use Linux and Windows will also have something coming in just a few months. I'll keep you posted on that as more information about that becomes available!


About the Author

Avatar image for Bart Veldhuizen
Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.


  1. Cool stuff. Definately buying the book. I'm very into iPhone development at the moment and combining this with Blender would be nice!

  2. Congrats, Tony!

    I worked on the iPhone game Townrs Defender, and although a mac was necessary for some of the development, there are certainly many parts of the pipeline where it's not required. Prophetic Sky comes from a Windows pipeline background, and although we did have to get a Mac Mini, we spent most of our time on our usual machines.

  3. Hi everybody, thanks for the encouraging comments!

    @Oscar, that's a good point. Actually I did most of he work for this book on a Windows machine (writing, modeling, Blender screenshots, etc) But the real guts of the subject matter of the book involves the SIO2 coding, which I did in Xcode on a Mac.

    I have heard some whispers on the wind of projects for doing various iPhone related development on other platforms. Check out the SIO2 forum for some discussion of that. So if people are using those kinds of tools, then things might be possible. But this stuff isn't sanctioned by Apple, and I don't want people accidentally buying the book thinking they'd have a straightforward time with it on an alternate platform.

    Especially for Blender users who are accustomed to the ultimate cross-platform mentality... most of us don't even notice when we switch computers! It's a bit of a rude awakening.

  4. My 2 cents: I'm very happy for another book from Tony about Blender, but i'm really NOT happy to advertise on brand name of proprietary blob system like the ifone at the same time with Blender that is the synthesis of openness and sharing knowledge, the exact opposite of Apple products.

  5. @qwerty, I understand how you feel. It would be great if there was a way to develop for a platform like this in an open way, but at present there aren't many options. Perhaps if Google has some success with Android the possibilities will expand.

    Opening up a mobile phone platform for general development has a lot of challenges, and I think it's still kind of an experimental thing. You have to make sure the system is secure, and you'd ideally like to have an environment where people can earn money for their work. The iPhone/iPod Touch platform is a really cool platform to develop for and the iTunes store has been a very successful way for independent developers to get their work distributed and sold.

    I'm very interested to see if Google can attain something like that level of success with their open approach. I'd love to see them manage to, although I'm a bit allergic to Java, so I'm not sure if it'd be for me anyway.

  6. Thanks, Erwin. It was fun to get a bit more up-close and personal with Bullet, too. I don't deal with Bullet all that much in the book, but I did have occasion to call a couple of bt functions, and I'm definitely looking forward to working with it more in the future!

  7. Tony, looking forward to your book. I considered using SIO2 but went the Unity way for my first project... It will be a great read .... does Sybex offer any RAW or Rough Cuts like option? Published date of March 2010 seems an awfully long time from now ....

  8. Hi Glenn, there's no such option as far as I know. The good news is that things are ahead of schedule, so with a little luck that date might get pushed up earlier. That's what I'm hoping anyway!

  9. TonyM...
    I don't want to sound harsh but if the original page of SIO2 said "Free Open Source Game Engine" but the license is not Open Source then SIO2 was a complete SCAM and the y should burn in hell. On the other hand how can someone write a book about Open Source Software and not reading the license of SIO2 first?
    On this days some companies are using the words "Open Source" to promote Free of Charge but not really Open Source products hoping to get lot of beta testers and potential costumers.
    I really like your books, TonyM, and I'm waiting for the next one. I hope this terrible mistake makes the Open Source Community learn about the difference between Free Apps (Sculptris, Indigo Render) and really Free Open Source Software.

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