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"Play It Again" is a local game history and preservation project with moving image and game archive partners, funded under the ARC Linkage scheme. We are compiling titles of 1980s computer games written in AU or NZ, whether published or not. Currently, we have some 700 AU titles and some 200 NZ titles, but we reckon there are probably many more we have missed.

Please help us to get these lists as complete as possible. The spreadsheets (there are 2) are linked to from our blog, at http://blogs.flinders.edu.au/play-it-again/ Please send feedback on errors or omissions to playitagain [at] flinders [dot] edu [dot] au and help us to get the word out by forwarding to your networks. Thanks!

Company
News

Simmersion Holdings Pty Limited, Canberra, Australia, has recently launched Mycosm, a real-time 3D visualisation and simulation platform.

Mycosm provides a great real-time 3D add-on for 3ds Max users and those that want to build interactive environments. The workflow is smooth, especially for 3ds Max users who can import fully animated models through fbx. Mycosm provides the ability to connect to SQL data bases, via Python script.

A free 33 day evaluation download of Mycosm Studio is available at the Mycosm website.

(Press release)

Simmersion Holdings Pty Limited (Simmersion Holdings), a 3D software company, has announced the availability of Mycosm® a flexible and powerful platform for constructing real-time, high fidelity 3D visualisation and simulation (VizSim) solutions.

The Mycosm® technology was used to develop Mycosm® Studio – an accessible and powerful tool for developers to construct and publish 3D environments based on real or imaginary data. Published environments are run in the freely distributed Mycosm Player.

Commenting on the launch Jeff Cotter, Co-Founder and CTO said “We are passionate about creating compelling and ground breaking 3D software technologies. Our goal is to make real-time 3D VizSim tools that are easy and fun to use, and above all accessible to everyone.”

Openness and interoperability
The open and extensible architecture, integrated middleware and python scripting make Mycosm Studio a powerful tool for simulating behaviour within a virtual environment. Mycosm is designed to allow models from many of the available CAD packages to be combined with the outputs from a range of (OGC compliant) geospatial software platforms e.g. .3ds and .fbx CAD formats; asci xyz and .dxf terrain formats; and .tif, .bmp, .jpg, .png, .dds texture formats.

User Experience
Mycosm includes a simple, uncluttered interface that helps the creative process. Combine this with rapid workflow for taking content from 3D modeling packages such as 3ds Max™ and Maya™ into a real time environment. The easy to use tools allow experienced 3D developers to be productive rapidly, but are still approachable for newcomers.

Rendering engine
The high-fidelity, high-performance, proprietary rendering engine allows for multiple real time light sources with shadows. In addition Mycosm offers game-standard effects such as High Dynamic Range (HDR) lighting and other post processing effects as well as support for normal, specular and environment mapping.

Terrains
Terrains can be created using brush-based sculpting and painting tools with fine control over meshing and texture layering. TIN based meshing and ortho-photo import allows for real-world data to be used. Mycosm is optimised to handle large, complex terrains. External terrains created in Bryce™ can be imported.

Middleware
Mycosm incorporates a range of middleware. With support for Speedtree® trees, plants and other vegetation can be imported into your environments. Integrated FMOD® sound engine supports volume, surround sound panning, Doppler and other DSP effects. Fork Particle™ effects such as smoke, fire, rain, snow and explosions can also be imported. SilverLining™ real time skies are integrated providing volumetric clouds.

Control your environment
Mycosm includes a powerful Python™ scripting editor that is easy to learn and gives you control over every aspect of your environment. The built-in editor provides syntax highlighting and code completion. You can use script to animate your environment or interact with external data or applications

Enterprise Functionality
Mycosm uses XML for data interchange and interoperability with external data sources and applications. Our open API allows integration with a broad range of back-end systems. Mycosm provides application and UI customization for Mycosm Player branding and aesthetics

Physics System
Endow objects in the Mycosm environment with realistic physical behavior including mass, forces, friction, gravity, and more.

Key-Frame Animation
Mycosm now supports key-frame animation imported from external modeling packages. This feature supports any model imported in FBX format, including rigged characters.

Publish to Player
Environments built with Mycosm Studio are published as single encrypted files to run in Mycosm Player. Mycosm Player is a small, free download allowing anyone to experience a Mycosm environment. Mycosm Player has an elegant and functional user interface that won't detract from your environment

Mr. Bob Quodling, CEO, Simmersion Holdings said “Mycosm provides advanced and enthusiast developers with the tools to build high-fidelity, real-time solutions for business and pleasure. With a price point aimed at mass-market adoption we look forward to working with our developers to build solutions for a wide range of industries”.

A free, trial version of Mycosm can be downloaded from www.mycosm.com

News

A little bit late with this news, but BigWorld Tech have made an extraordinary announcement with some new licensing plans for their MMO suite of tools and engine, with the aim of knabbing interest from indie developers and schools.

To break down the new licenses:

- Indie license: max 10,000 subscribers, no source code, 25 seats, 10% royalty = $299 (US) annually
- Indie Source license: source code, all of the above and access to more plugins, $2,999 (US) annually
- Academic license: Similar to the Indie license, no source code, (US) $299 for up to 25 students per year

The commercial license runs into the hundreds of thousands of dollars and so is only for serious ventures only, but with these new licenses, prototyping and testing your MMO ideas is an extremely affordable option with BigWorld Tech...

So why is BigWorld Tech doing this just now? Well, from the FAQ on their website...

Indie developers have been asking for an affordable version of BigWorld Technology from the day we started licensing it. We think that we're now in a position to make it available.

Additionally, getting a groundswell of engineers, artists and developers who are familiar with the scope and capabilities of BigWorld Technology going forward can only be a good thing for game development, our commercial customers and the gaming public. The Mod and Indie scene is arguably stronger and better positioned than ever before in the brief history of game development, and many of these groups want to try their hand at Virtual or graphical social worlds or MMOs.

More details at the following link...

News
Submitted by designerwatts on Fri, 06/11/09 - 2:22 AM Permalink

Its great to see another powerful engine platform released. This is especially good for the education department as it gives students and teachers full access to a game development engine that's very much used in today's game development enviornment.

Glancing over the indie pay figures it's something i'm a little bit concerned on.

- $99 as a start off seems great.
- The $1,250 at the $10,000 mark strikes me as a little bit strange as it's pretty much a 12.5% backpayment on your success which is a bit counter-intuitive in my eyes. I'm just not a fan of retrospect fees.
- the 25% royalties past $10,000 is standard fare. Although that is quite a large percentage if you account for your game was taken in by a publisher. Once everyone has taken a piece of the profit pie I wouldn't see much else going to the developer. If you sold the game on steam I could see it working much more in the developers favour but even still.

The engine is very advanced and robust. So I hope many that have good ideas for games that could benefit from such an engine take hold of this opportunity.

Submitted by souri on Mon, 09/11/09 - 12:41 PM Permalink

I agree, the people who'll get the most out of this option will be students and educational institutions. Here's a professional quality middleware engine that they can learn and work on at no absolute cost. I'd imagine this would be great news for architecture types and those that need a free solution to show off some 3D representation (the medicine field etc). The level building tools are simply great to use.

I do question whether this will really take off for indie developers however, as I reckon other options are much better (such as Unity) for multiplatform small casual / indie type of games, particularly since there are no royalties attached. Anyone know how much Steam takes per sale? I'd imagine it takes quite a chunk off the return after Epic take their 25%, and Steam takes their share.

I just hope no small indie group is considering making the next Gears of War or COD with it. It's good to get excited about the new tech it offers, but those games take a considerable amount of talent and man hours to make.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 07/11/09 - 10:49 AM Permalink

all the krome employees were told if they use this while employed at krome then krome owns their work

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 07/11/09 - 11:27 AM Permalink

That's not unusual for a company to claim,

but it would be unusual for a company to hold you to it if you didn;t use their time or resources in any way.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 08/11/09 - 10:49 AM Permalink

I'm not sure where that misinformation came from, but it was never said.

One employee said he was concerned about that, and none other than Walshy (the co-owner of the company) sent a company wide email to say that it is not the case. There are plenty of employees at Krome who work on projects in their own time at home and have the companies blessings to do so.

The whole ownership issue was related to installing the Uneal Development Kit on work computers, as the license for UDK states that using UDK in a commercial environment requires the company to buy a $2500 annual license for every machine it is used on.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Submitted by NathanRunge on Sat, 07/11/09 - 1:39 PM Permalink

Many companies and institutions claim such things, but the legal enforceability of such agreements is often dubious. I am currently attending QUT (whilst running my indie studio) and I believe they might, in theory, be able to claim my work. That said, it depends a lot on what you sign and, if it came down to it, you could probably successfully argue your case in court.

Educational institutions don't often want to claim ownership if your work and only really want to be able to use it for "look what our students do" purposes. Companies, however, usually employ the practice to ensure that employees don't appropriate concept, techniques or other advantages from working at the company and employ them elsewhere for another company or themselves, as extra protection beyond a Non-Disclosure Agreement. Then again, other companies are just run by arseholes. Which category Krome fits into, I am not sure, but I can guarantee that I am not going to be applying there solely from my experiences with them in the past.

Submitted by Blitz on Sat, 07/11/09 - 2:52 PM Permalink

They don't need to claim ownership to show your work, they only need to retain the right to show your work (i guess you essentially grant them an irrevokable license to do that). However that said anyway, they should only be claiming such rights on work you have done as part of your coursework, funded by them, or used their facilities for.

Companies shouldn't need to employ such a clause for the purposes you describe, as IP, assets etc. are protected already (by copyright laws etc.), and anything not protected by those laws can't be considered something that the person would not have been otherwise able to learn/develop etc. without that company. Also, most companies will have non-solicitation clauses in their contracts which stops you being able to profit from most things that might actually have some level of secrecy around them. You're right that a lot of companies/institutions contain these ownership clauses, and probably correct that they wouldn't stand up in court (if you've developed stuff in your own time, and own equipment without breaking any copyright or IP etc.) as it just defies common sense. I once questioned the clause in my previous employers contract, and was told something along the lines of extra protection to what the copyright and non-solicitation clauses already did. Eg. stop me from developing a competing game using the companies assets/technology. Basically, unless anything i made on my own watch stole their code/assets, or was a direct competitor to one of their titles, it was a non-issue. These seemed reasonable to me.
In kromes case that sounds much less reasonable.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 07/11/09 - 4:18 PM Permalink

While some may consider such a position by Krome as unfair, from the perspective of a studio there is much more at stake than just trying to claim unpaid creativity or work. The studio usually has to indemnify publishers against the actions of employees as well as agree to non compete and IP assignment clauses. "Rogue development" could therefore put the studio in a precarious legal position.

Working within the studio structure is probably the best way to get anything at a scale which requires the Unreal engine to market. I would suggest if someone feels strongly enough that they want to develop their own games, but does not feel like that is something they want to do within their studio, then they should probably move to a new studio or start one up themselves. Having to wait until you are at home to be passionate about something isn't doing the best for either yourself or your employer.

That being said, if somebody wants to do something at home which doesn't compete with the core competencies of the studio and is unlikely to generate legal issues, and the development in question is brought to the management of the studio *before* development starts, my own position is that it should be allowed where possible.

Regards

Mario

Submitted by NathanRunge on Sat, 07/11/09 - 6:55 PM Permalink

You are right that they don't need to claim ownership in order to show the work produced by students, but I suspect they wish to reserve the freedom to use it in any manner they wish and, potentially, to act in ways a license may otherwise not permit them to, or in ways they may not foresee when defining the terms of a license. A lot of students develop projects outside of university, and I am hear of the university try to claim any of it as their own. It may simply be that claiming ownership of all work is an easier process than attempting to define licensing arrangements on such a broad spectrum of potential developments.

The companies also don't necessarily need such an arrangement to protect themselves. Having such an arrangement, however, may give them legal recourse to stop an employee's action that may be difficult to define as breaking other agreements. Claiming ownership may also give them the option to bypass legal complications should they choose to act. Regardless, I don't feel that it is a particularly well considered approach.

I am also wondering what the ramifications of such agreements are pertaining to software licensing agreements. If Krome is claiming ownership of all work made by its employees at home, then said work is being produced for a commercial game development studio rather than for personal ownership and use. Does this breach the terms of the license agreement? Potentially such agreements may generate complex legal problems relating to academic and non-commercial software licenses.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 08/11/09 - 4:11 PM Permalink

After the last twelve months of Aussie game industry FAIL, this is the first good news I've had in a long, long time.

Submitted by souri on Thu, 03/12/09 - 2:06 PM Permalink

I've always loved 3D video tutorials - there's no better way of learning the ropes than being shown exactly how things are done. They do a whole range of tutorial videos for software and applications, and now there's a whole bunch of freely available Unreal Dev Kit videos as well.

http://www.fileshack.com/browse.x/5627

Invaluable stuff if you're wanting to learn the UDK. Great stuff.

Australian game developers have had a rather mixed bag of success when it comes to the Unreal engine. Irrational Games (now 2K Australia) has perhaps the most Unreal engine related success with their Unreal 2 powered Tribes 2 game, although unfortunately sales were just in the tens of thousands. Auran did not fare any better with Fury, which was running on what was the new Unreal Engine 3 at the time. Fuzzyeyes Studios' steampunk themed RPG, Edge of Twilight, seems very much up in the air at the moment, and let's not forget Perception's Unreal Engine 2 powered Stargate SG-1 shooter, the game which was the centre of their well publicised demise.

Pushing all that aside, it's time that we can turn it all around!

Although it may look like the recent announcement of the free Unity engine had inspired Epic Games to follow suite, Epic had been planning to entice indie developers to the Unreal engine by pushing it as a powerful casual game development and game education solution months ago. From Shacknews...

(Mark Rein) Actually we've been working on this for months. Tim Sweeney actually revealed it in an interview he did with G4TV back in July :) He said we were working on an initiative to “open up the engine to more people to use freely and build cool stuff” and that “currently things that you do with Unreal Tournament we'll try to open up to a larger audience

The newly announced Unreal Development Kit features the very capable Unreal Engine 3, and with it includes the amazing level / terrain editor, character / facial animation tools, as well as its tried and true physics, lighting, shaders, AI, and networking capabilities. And for no initial cost, you're able to develop a title which you can later package, redistribute, and charge what ever you like. How cool is that?!

From Epic's press release...

The Unreal Development Kit is the free version of the award-winning Unreal Engine 3, the software development framework used to create computer and video games, 3D simulations, TV shows, films and more

Anyone can download UDK and work with the same game development tools used to create blockbuster games, architectural walkthroughs and digital movies. UDK ships with the latest version of the Unreal Editor, with its unrivaled content creation toolset and rapid prototyping functionality.

UDK is free for noncommercial and educational use. Licensing terms are available to those who wish to sell UDK-powered games or to create commercial products or services for business use at www.udk.com/licensing.

The licensing terms are interesting, and if you do plan on selling your project or game made with UDK, you'll have to pay a $99 license and cough up $1,250 once you reach $10,000 worth of sales. Then it's a 25% cut of royalties from that point, which seems reasonable.

The new UDK solution will contain some assets from Tournament 3 as well as source code, so you can begin mucking around with the engine immediately. For more details, head on over to the UDK website!

News
Submitted by souri on Thu, 29/10/09 - 11:20 AM Permalink

Existing paid indie users get the following upgrade offers:
We are giving a 400$ discount on a Unity Pro upgrade, or a $250 discount on the iPhone Basic - so you can add iPhone games to your roster for $150. We don't care when you bought it - we'll be happy to upgrade you :)

This offer is valid to the end of the year, so you've got some time to save up to make use of this.

Alternatively, if you've purchased Unity Indie in the last 60 days, you can also get a full refund. In this case you'll get an email no matter if you asked not to be contacted (if you're really annoyed by getting an email containing money, you have my apologies Smile). If you choose the refund, you lose the upgrade rebates naturally.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 29/10/09 - 11:38 AM Permalink

If you were looking at doing a bunch of 2D games for iPhone\IpodTouch over the next year, I wonder what middleware would come most recommended:

- Torque2D
- Unity (bending it to do 2D work)
- Waiting for the new Flash iPhone stuff to arrive
- Being manly and just doing it in XCode-Objective-C

Any thoughts?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 29/10/09 - 12:16 PM Permalink

I think it probably depends on your experience etc.
Cost-wise...
Developing flash is(will be) free if you use the various free flash tools out there, Flex SDK, FlashDevelop etc. My understanding that the tools required to export flash to iPhone will be free too?
Doing it in objective C is free i guess. (I've not actually looked into it but i assume there a free compilers and IDE's)
Unity is free but requires a license for iPhone (US$400). At least with Unity you can develop your game for free and just buy the iphone license when you get to a point that you need to run it on the iPhone i guess.
Torque2D for iPhone (from my understanding of the website) requires you to have the Torque2D commercial w/ source license (US$1250) plus the Torque2D iPhone license (U?S$750), so it's probably best to steer clear of unless you really like the engine and can afford those costs. You can get the indie version of the T2D engine to play around and see if you like it for US$100 (or US$250 w/ source).

I'm sure Unity would be able to do decent 2D, they just might not have native support for some common 2d things like scrollmaps etc.

When making your decision you should also look at what other platforms you want to release on, T2D supports 360, unity supports Wii, etc. If you use objective C you should be able to write most of your code in C++ (except the OS layer) and then port that to other platforms later on.

Submitted by Conor on Thu, 29/10/09 - 5:26 PM Permalink

Torque for iPhone doesn't require the full commercial license, only the source code version of Torque 2D (sometimes called the pro version) which is US$250

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 29/10/09 - 10:47 PM Permalink

Objective C IDE is XCode which comes free with Mac OS.

SDKs are all available from apples website.

Timewise, I would probably work direct in ObjectiveC having done engine programming for a living now, for the average person it'd potentially (most likely) take you longer than doing it in unity.

Submitted by benbritten on Thu, 29/10/09 - 6:29 PM Permalink

I have been using unity for about 18 months now, and it is quite simple to do 2d stuff in it. (here is an example: http://escafactory.com/mole/)

We were able to build this game in record time because unity is very easy to use (unlike flash, which is a general content creation tool, unity is made specifically for building games, so much of the hard work is already done for you) We use the desktop version (now free) to prototype our games anyway, so even if you decided to go with something else to build the final game, i would suggest picking up unity just for prototyping if nothing else.

As someone else pointed out unity is a 3d engine, so it doesnt have any specific 2d tools (like scrollmaps) but all that stuff is pretty easy to replicate in unity (and the unity community is very active, so many of the bits n pieces have already been made and are available from a quick google search)

Cheers and good luck with your games!
-Ben

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 10/11/09 - 11:39 AM Permalink

Cocos2D is an excellent - and free - iphone Game Engine.

http://www.cocos2d-iphone.org/

Extremely easy to set up, contains lots of examples and blank templates and is already used in hundreds of iPhone games.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 29/10/09 - 11:53 AM Permalink

Rock n roll.
That's great news, GarageGames are gonna have to compete hard for the indie market now!

Submitted by Bittman on Thu, 29/10/09 - 2:09 PM Permalink

Heck, given the troubles we've been having trying to get the game ready for GCAP nomination with Ogre3D, this is basically a sign to change over to Unity3D, especially given an example of it's power I saw at the Sydney GameJam where Ian made a game using about 95% maya and 4% tools and 1% code.

Pity they took so long to do it though, but better late than never!

Submitted by designerwatts on Thu, 29/10/09 - 2:33 PM Permalink

Fantastic news.

As for the comments on whether Unity can do 2D well. Our in-development game "Mole" uses unity 3D.

Simply switch the camera to orthographic and lay your 2D assets out in a 3D space, using the 3ed dimension as the 'layers' of your 2D assets. Then create a 2D based control scheme for your player character.

Granted there are other [and probably better / more efficient] ways to make a 2D game. But using unity allows for a quick way to prototype your game.

And with that being said. Now that unity is free we now have access to a well designed engine and tool set that will allow teams to prototype quite rapidly. Even if the team doesn't use unity for their project when it goes into production. it's an excellent way to knock a game concept out to either promote the game or to seek funding depending on it's scope. Playable demos speak louder then any pitch or design document.

Indie developers rejoice, as Unity (the popular multi-platform gaming solution) has abolished their independent license version of the engine and are making it available for free! It looks like the recent $5 million injection of investment has been an influential factor behind this decision, and it's likely to push the popularity of Unity as a game development and publishing tool way beyond many of its competitors.

The professional license is still being retained and you can purchase that for $1500 (US). The indie version (and therefore the new free edition) isn't very limiting in comparison however, with some shadow, post processing and certain shader effects excluded, and you will have to put up with a Unity logo intro screen on your exported projects, but that's basically it. Now there's absolutely no reason not to try out Unity 3D!

Also in Unity related news, the newly released version is 2.6 which has some incredibly useful new features...

Features new to Unity 2.6 include full integration with Visual Studio and support for external revision control solutions like Subversion and Perforce. Both these inclusions Unity says are aimed at allowing the engine to better slot into existing large-scale developers' production pipelines.

Also new to 2.6 are graphics and performance capabilities like post-processing-compatible anti-aliasing, screen space ambient occlusion, and background fully-threaded asset streaming.

Read the interview with Unity's David Helgason at Gamasutra regarding the news at the following link...

Company
News

VastPark announces its vision for the next generation in Enterprise collaboration: VastPark 3C

VastPark, the open lightweight virtual world platform announced a new product today, VastPark 3C.

VastPark 3C, which stands for Community Collaboration Centre, connects an easy-to-use social network platform with an immersive real time meeting system, allowing users to self organise within a collaborative environment.

These features combine to empower an Enterprise that is more responsive and agile, that promotes internal discussion and automates real time transparency giving managers a better understanding of what people are thinking and doing.

VastPark 3C is aimed at government, intelligence, corporate, and communities such as industry groups. It enables organisations to get the benefits of their own 3rd generation social network platform with the added benefit of the VastPark virtual world platform built in.

Reduce the costs of group participation, reduce emails, travel time and create effective meeting attendance, even allow people to review the contents of meetings they were unable to attend.

VastPark 3C is a cutting edge integration platform which provides a low cost solution for services that were previously only available separately.

Organisations are invited to join the closed beta program for VastPark 3C at www.vastpark.com. Registration comes with no cost or obligation, but enables organizations to access the technology much sooner than otherwise. For more information on VastPark 3C please visit: http://www.vastpark.com/3c

News
Submitted by Bittman on Mon, 27/04/09 - 1:19 PM Permalink

"(e) Licensee may not release Products created with FMOD Ex intended for operation on Game Console Systems including the Microsoft Xbox, Xbox 360, Sony Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Playstation Portable, Nintendo GameCube, Wii, DS.

(f) Licensee may not release Games created with FMOD Ex for distribution on mobile phone handsets."

Freaking terms and conditions ruin all the fun. And they don't seem to have the non-indie licence for me to browse, but oh well.

We're still looking at this though, since we're using FMOD for our audio analysis.

Firelight Technology's FMOD, the choice for many developers for creation and playback of interactive audio in their games, is one step closer to world domination. After winning Game Developer magazine's 2008 Front Line award for best Audio Tool, Firelight have decided to team up with Garage Games and is offering FMOD EX for a super cheap $100 (US) if you're an indie Torque developer. FMOD EX for commercial Torque developers can snag FMOD EX for a measley $500, which is a huge discount from the standard FMOD EX commercial license.

FMOD has been used on titles such as Call of Duty: World at War, Little Big Planet and World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King. If you're an indie or commercial developer, it looks like there's no excuse not to take up FMOD EX!

Company
News
Submitted by Bittman on Tue, 24/03/09 - 4:09 PM Permalink

I don't like them, because its always a selected sentence about why things are awesome and never provides critical response.

That said, some high/medium-profiled testimonials there.

Big Ant: "fully harness the power of the PS3" <- would actually like to see something that does, because to date I still haven't heard of anything stressing the Behemoth Juggernaut machine that Playstation 3 was made to be.

Submitted by designerwatts on Tue, 24/03/09 - 4:37 PM Permalink

Sometimes best to take press releases with a grain of salt.

With talking with programmers in the industry and their views on programming for the PS3 the words "Fully Harness the power of the PS3" probably means "Cut out some of the arbitrary bullshit that comes with programming with the multicore core/cell setup."

Which as far as getting down to actually making games it can only be a good thing. So while I agree the press release is sugarcoated with selected wording it might well be a step in the right direction for Big Ant. If it saves a few programmers time and sanity though it'll be worth it.

Big Ant Studios has provided some assuring words for Phyreengine which is included in the announcement by Sony on the latest version of the games development framework. was announced at the GDC, and Sony's press release contained the following word bytes from the Melbourne based developer...

Australian developer Big Ant Studios. Ross Symons, their CEO added "PhyreEngine has cut down Big Ant's development time significantly while allowing us to fully harness the power of the PS3. PhyreEngine has given us the opportunity to focus less on tech and more on creating good games."
News

I know news has been a bit quiet lately, but this is one many have been waiting for. Unity 2.5 is here! Judging by the extreme slowness of their website, it looks like the Unity website is getting hammered by many, many visitors curious to check out the latest version of the cross platform game development engine and tools.

So why were so many eager to try out Unity 2.5? Because it's now finally available for the Windows platform. There's a 30 day trial available to check out, and the licenses look pretty reasonable for indie groups (and extremely reasonable for larger commercial developers). Although it looks like exporting to the iPhone is still only available for the Mac version, there are many other platforms you can deploy to including PC, Mac, Web (requires the Unity plugin), and Nintendo Wii (requires specific license)...

Company
News

Since we're a bit starved of Team Bondi news, I'm more than willing to post anything that contains something new about the secretive Sydney development studio!

Developmag has posted a brief news item about Lightsprint, the Global illumination solution, being integrated into Gamebryo. Not very exciting news, really. At the end, however, Team Bondi is mentioned as a licensee of the technology. Is L.A Noire using light baked illumination for their City of Angels? No idea, but I do know that Kaos Studios worked on Frontlines: Fuel of War and is based in New York, and isn't an Australian developer as the news item mentioned.

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