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Posts Tagged ‘Crytek’

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Ryse: Son of Rome is probably one of the best-looking games on the planet, with Crytek’s muscle behind every pixel and CryEngine 3 showing off just how good games can look on the Xbox One. Its development was a difficult period for Crytek, with Microsoft pushing them for an early release with the Xbox One’s launch, timed to coincide with Sony’s Playstation 4 launch in November 2013. Now it looks like Crytek, fresh out of a financial crisis and eager to get back on its feet, is preparing a port of the game to be published on PC.

The PC version of Ryse: Son of Rome is set for a Holiday 2014 launch and it will be co-published by Deep Silver, the same company that took over Crytek UK in Nottingham and is currently overseeing the completion of Homefront: The Revolution.

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Crytek, it appears, is falling apart. Less than a week out from the studio announcing that things were now fine and dandy and extra funding had been acquired to pay their staff and continue development there have been layoffs en masse from the Crytek Austin offices and the studio has additionally sold off the Homefront IP, which they had previously acquired from the now-defunct THQ back in 2012. What a mess this has been…

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It’s safe to say that Crytek has been in a spot of bother throughout the last couple of weeks. We’ve had reports of UK-based staff members not being paid, developers walking out, and their Shanghai offices also taking strain. Throughout all of this, however, there’s been a wall of silence from Crytek itself. As with most things in the gaming industry, where there’s smoke there’s fire, and in the case of Crytek, there was most definitely fire.

The company has finally broken its silence and has provided a statement on the financial and staffing issues that have been experienced of late. Crytek has indeed been sourcing additional funds to aid them as they transition from “a development studio to an Online-Publisher”. That funding has been secured, but during the interim, many of the staff members throughout Crytek’s global company have been the ones who have suffered the most.

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According to Kotaku’s sources,  since yesterday the majority of Crytek UK’s employees are no longer going to work. This isn’t yet another industry lay-off session; they’ve stopped going to work because, much like their friends in the China-based Crytek offices, they haven’t been paid. Earlier in the week, it is believed that a group of Crytek UK employees handed the company an official grievance letter before leaving their posts and the building.

While the exact figure is unknown, some sources have indicated that up to 100 people have left Crytek UK since the company’s trouble began. Whether this includes the number of Crytek UK employees who were laid off last month is unknown.

Homefront: The Revolution, which was revealed at E3 last month, is currently in development at Crytek UK. That development has likely ceased or has at least hit a major slowdown since the staff departures. It has been suggested that the remaining Crytek UK staff are hopeful that the game’s publisher, Deep Silver, will purchase Crytek UK so that development on Homefront: The Revolution can continue. We also hope that happens, because what we saw of the game at E3 was looking really good.

Source: Kotaku

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If you thought the news that Crytek was facing financial hurdles weren’t big enough worry for the company, their Shanghai, China office is practically in a state of chaos. Eurogamer have learned from some of the developers working for the China-based offices that not only are salaries being paid in odd ways, there are also imminent legal battles that the company will soon have to deal with as a result of a breach of contract with their Shanghai staff.

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Although they are the original creators of the Far Cry and Crysis series and have had some interesting games and game announcements come out in the past year or so, Crytek seems to be struggling on a few hurdles that they haven’t managed to cross over. The 800-man company stretched across more than five countries is currently in a bit of a crisis themselves, with layoffs at their UK-based studios happening this week and a number of people and publications coming forward to discuss how the company is not doing very well right now. Can they avoid another THQ saga?

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When THQ became bankrupt and had all of its assets sold off to bidders in an auction, one of the franchises on offer was Homefront, a first-person shooter that explored the possibility of a universe in which North Korean troops invaded the United States. Although I’ve never played Homefront before, I’m definitely keen on seeing where the series goes under the new owners of the IP, Crytek. Although it wasn’t known if they were going to be doing any work on a new game for the series, Crytek has now revealed that a sequel was in the works. The game is called Homefront: The Revolution and it’s heading for a 2015 launch.

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Aspirant designers of first-person shooters set in lush jungle environments with a Lord of the Flies-inspired narrative need cry no more as to where they will acquire an engine capable of rendering their vision in its true majesty. Crytek has officially launched its CryEngine on Steam with their previously announced subscription-based model.

The CryEngine is being offered via monthly subscription with varying levels of discount if you sign up for longer periods. The Steam version gives you access to the full set of CryEngine tools and documentation, and the offer comes in at roughly half of what the Unreal Engine costs and with zero royalty fee requirements. Crytek have launched a real salvo in the game development space by getting their development platform onto Steam, and it’ll be interesting to see whether Unity or Epic Games follow suit.

You can access the Steam store page (and its several screenshots of grass and foliage) here, or give Crytek’s blog post a read for more details.

Source: Crytek

The current generation of consoles from Sony and Microsoft both managed to tally up in a few hardware specifications towards the end of their design, one of them being the insanely huge 8GB of RAM installed on both machines. But despite the vast difference between today’s machines and the Xbox 360 and PS3 which only had 512MB to work with, Crytek’s US Engine Business Development Manager Sean Tracy says that it isn’t really that big and that the memory allocations both consoles have for games (around 5-6GB) isn’t difficult to fill up.

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Things are getting interesting on the Linux front. Yesterday Valve pushed a DirectX to OpenGL translator to help game developers port over their titles quicker to be compatible with Linux and now Crytek has also announced that it is integrating Linux support straight into CryEngine 3. This means that any game made with CryEngine 3 and its derivatives in the future will automatically also sport some Linux compatibility out of the box and it may possibly help to port titles currently running on a variation of CryEngine to be ported over as well. CryEngine 3 joins the ranks of Valve’s Source engine, the Unreal engine, the Unity Engine, every id Tech engine to date and Unigine among dozens more that support the open-source Linux platform.

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