EX-LUCASARTS VETS FORM NOVEMBER SOFTWARE, AIM TO ADVANCE SOCIAL GAMES
Recently formed November Software has announced a new product "Inemeri: A Familiar World" that aims to elevate social gaming to a new standard and deliver high end 3D content to the web, iPhone and iPad.
Based in San Francisco, November Software was founded by a team of former LucasArts and EA veterans who advanced the technology and art for Star Wars: The Force Unleashed and its sequel.
"We are gamers and we want to take what we know and love about Next-Gen games: the deep immersion, high-fidelity atmosphere, multi-layered skill based mechanics, and bring them into the casual social gaming world." Szymon Swistun said in a statement. "At first we felt a bit out of our element in terms of the social gaming paradigms, but after spending countless nights refining our design we now feel we are on the verge of creating a new style of game-play that is really collaborative and fun."
November Software is launching a closed beta play-test that will go live this summer. A limited number of slots are still available; players can get access at www.inemeri.com or follow the game’s progress on twitter @inemeri.
Typically, the more cutting edge rendering features we add to our games, the more complex the workflow for the engineers, artists and content creators that deal with them. There are many brilliant technology advancements that are in development or near release: real-time ray-tracing, real-time global illumination, major DirectX API changes, CPU - GPU fusion, mega-meshes, just to name few.
However, our industry is already facing a tremendous problem: the exponentially increasing cost of game development. This will only get worse, very fast, unless simplifying workflows for all disciplines involved with game development is drastically improved.
One of the great artists of our time, Doug Chiang, is allowing us to use his Robota concept
piece "Desert Bones" to demo our technology and to help inspire future levels.
He is also starting something new, and we are excited about potentially collaborating on concepts, ideas, story and technology in the near future.
Just like every hero needs a villain, every game needs a box. Actually, lots of boxes...that you can break.
In the images you see some tastefully rendered debug boxes (feel free to imagine a crate-like material instead) exploding from the force unleashed by our character, then interacting and breaking into smaller pieces (also boxes). These smaller pieces break in to smaller pieces and so on, until we're left with an entropy-soup of boxes in different sizes.
Think this is too simple to be making a post about? So did we...at first. We found tons of uses for it, from crazy destruction puzzles to our user interface. What?!? Yes.
Using old unfinished environment assets, this is the first working version of our fully dynamic
Image Based Lighting technique running in engine.
First image is just the environment materials.
Second image is the dynamic IBL lighting.
Third image is environment materials combined with dynamic IBL lighting.
This is one of our many tech tricks to simplify our content workflow, this way we don't have to spend time authoring lots of lights
to make a "believable" looking scene, instead we use the actual final image from the previous frame
to "light" the current one. The bright grey light on the ground and left wall is coming from the grey mountain in
the background directly, no actual lights authored in this example.
The detail of the lighting comes from the high detail displaced
normals on the surfaces, that "grab" light from various directions. This is still in progress, and will be much improved as we work
through more of the kinks.
Regaining consciousness in an eerie village on the verge of collapse, you sense a storm looming in the distance.
How you got here is unknown, but you feel compelled to escape before it is too late.
Explore this mysterious world with the help of your friends and live to create your own epic tale.
Beta Launching Summer 2011.