Firemint’s implementation of wireless mirroring using AirPlay reminds us of Nintendo’s Wii U console. The execution is certainly different, but the philosophy is essentially the same.
The wireless-mirroring feature works like this: once set up, RR2HD uses iPad 2’s screen to display real-time information (like the circuit track, your position, speed etc.) while an Apple TV-connected HDTV displays the game’s actual racing action which you can control using the iPad 2 as a steering wheel.
We installed iOS 5 on an iPad 2 and Apple TV, and took the latest version of Real Racing 2 HD for a test-drive, which enables dual-screen gameplay over AirPlay without the need for Apple’s $39 AV adapter. Other games, like Angry Birds, simply mirror the iPad’s display (and aspect ratio) on your HDTV, but Real Racing streams 16:9 HD video…
There’s noticeable lag between the iPad and Apple TV when using AirPlay, which may be an issue for games where timing is important, such as Rock Band, but didn’t seem to set us back while playing Firemint’s racing game. Overall, AirPlay offered a seamless gaming experience without a single hiccup — surprising, considering iOS 5 just hit beta last week.
As we predicated earlier in this post, there is a noticeable lag between when the user steers the iPad and when that action shows up on screen. Lag isn’t much of an issue for wireless mirroring when you’re not playing games on the iPad 2, but with Real Racing 2 HD – a game in which you win or lose on the basis of how good your timing is – this will be an issue.
The lag goes away when you use a $39 Digital AV cable. So if you want to play RR2HD properly on your HDTV, we would suggest going for the wired solution instead of the laggy wireless one.