Engine firms must adapt for digital devs - Crytek

Engine firms must adapt for digital devs - Crytek

By Rob Crossley

December 21st 2011 at 10:34AM

CryEngine boss Carl Jones says dev pipelines need to be 'super-fast and robust'

Game engine vendors must acclimatise to the new environment of digital, mobile and social games studios, the technology boss of Crytek has said.

Carl Jones told Edge that "the whole business of technology providing will change" because so many studios have broken away from the traditional triple-A, fire-and-forget business model.

Smartphone and downloadable games, which tend to gradually evolve through scheduled updates, has led to an increased demand for tools that allow for easy and rapid changes to game projects, Jones claimed.

He said engine vendors, such as Crytek, must cater for this new method of iterative development.

“At the lower end of the development scale where you maybe aren’t creating such complex games, you’re generally delivering more content throughout the lifecycle of the game," he said.

"If you’re trying to create content on a weekly basis, which is quite often necessary in a free-to-play, mobile or casual game, your pipeline to get it out there has to be super-fast and very robust. And that’s something we’re concentrating on a great deal.”

Crytek’s rival game engines, such as Unity and the Unreal Development Kit, already provide technology specifically for mobile games developers.

In March, Crytek co-founder Avni Yerli revealed to Develop that the firm would be developing various mobile game technologies. Such an engine has not yet materialised, though Crytek is extending its reach to independent studios with its free-to-download CryEngine SDK.

Jones believes adapting is necessary, with the triple-A model now burdened by high stakes.

“There are some very, very big name studios that have made games that you would think are a success, but actually they’re closing down because the sheer cost of making that game was too high. Obviously that’s untenable, except for a very small number of games per year,” he said.