Deus Ex 3 to use Crystal Dynamics game engine

Deus Ex 3 to use Crystal Dynamics game engine
Michael French

By Michael French

November 30th 2007 at 10:25AM

Studio head of Eidos Montreal says team will share tech with Crystal Dynamics as he discusses plans for franchise

Eidos has big plans for the new installment in its esteemed Deus Ex franchise, and will be using the game engine created by the Crystal Dynamics team working on another of its next-gen revamps, Lara Croft Tomb Raider, to power the new game.

Next-gen games technology is being shared between Crystal Dynamics and new studio Eidos Montreal to help give Deus Ex 3 a technical headstart, studio head Stephane D'Astous, who previously worked for Ubisoft Montreal, told Develop in an exclusive interview.

He explained: "This is a very important factor for us. In former positions where i worked technology was always a grey zone, a question mark. I'm relieved that here at Eidos we have two great internal engines - one from IO and one from Crystal. We chose the Crystal engine because we plan to help develop this engine more and then share it back with the rest of the company, the other Eidos studios. Having that technology from the start gives us a great advantage and foundation for our coders - there are no doubts about the approach, and we have few uncertainties. We just want to all work together on improving the same technology as we develop our game."

Some uncertainties about the new Deus Ex title - announced at the official opening of Eidos Montreal at the start of the week - do exist in the minds of some commentators, who have pointed out that none of the original creative staff are not involved in the new title.

However D'Astous was confident that his new team can rise to the challenge.

"All the developers working on Deus Ex 3 pretty much know the series inside and out - coming here, they were pretty aware of the opportunity and what they could do," he said.

"We did our research to find out what worked well, what people enjoyed about it - especially the first game. The second was a success in the eyes of some, but had some ups and downs, so we've tried to identify what worked well in that game. Most importantly, we're extracting what worked well and can be applied now. In the five, six years since that series arrived technology has changed significantly and we have to be careful - we don't want to create more of the same. Instead we've identified the features that can be transposed well onto new technology that arrived several years later."

Eidos Montreal's ambitions have already won over the staff at its publishing HQ, he added: "We have done our homework and we have done a lot of research into it. Our proof of concept was approve last month on our first try - I think we've impressed our colleagues back in the UK. We were so pleased that he vision we have for the game was shared and accepted by them. Now the challenge is to realise our conception into concrete code."

The full interview with D'Astous can be read here.

[Note: article has been edited to clarify use of next-gen Crystal Dynamics technology.]