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This is a discussion on Game Tech News within the Electronics forums, part of the Non-Related Discussion category; After the collapse of THQ in 2013, the fate of well-loved franchises like Darksiders was in peril. The company’s intellectual ...

          
   
  1. #681
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    Darksiders III

    After the collapse of THQ in 2013, the fate of well-loved franchises like Darksiders was in peril. The company’s intellectual properties scattered to the winds, devs moved to other endeavors, and fans were heartbroken. But all these years later, Darksiders is back from the dead right alongside the name of its former publisher.

    Vigil Games developed the first two Darksiders games under THQ, and much of that team ended up at Crytek after the bankruptcy. The rights to Darksiders went to Nordic Games though, so regardless of interest, the original devs couldn’t simply deliver a follow-up whenever they felt like it.

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    Nvidia AI in Unreal Engine 4



    Interest in artificial neural networks has skyrocketed over the years as companies like Google and Facebook have invested heavily in machines that can think like humans. Today, an AI can recognize objects in photos or help generate realistic computer speech, but Nvidia has successfully built a neural network that can create an entire virtual world with the help of a game engine. The researchers speculate this “hybrid” approach could one day make AI-generated games a reality.

    The system build by Nvidia engineers uses many of the same parts as other AI experiments, but they’re arranged in a slightly different way. To goal of the project was to create a simple driving simulator, but without using any humans to design the environment.

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    Epic Games Is Gunning for Steam



    Life is strange sometimes. Three days ago, I was openly wondering what gaming service might emerge to provide a better set of features and capabilities than Steam. This week, Epic Games announces that they’re coming out with their own service — and they’ve got at least one serious hook ready to land right between Gabe Newell’s eyes.
    This is a true store, not just a landing page for Epic’s own products, though obviously, it’ll take time to populate things. Where Steam takes a 30 percent cut of all developer earnings, Epic has slashed its own take, to just 12 percent. The company writes that developers will receive 88 percent of revenue, with no tiers or thresholds. Epic takes 12 percent, and if a developer uses Unreal Engine, Epic will cover the 5 percent engine royalty for sales on the Epic Games store out of Epic's 12 percent, the company said.

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    Epic Launches New PC Games Store

    Epic has, as promised, launched its new Store. While the service is obviously intended to take Steam on head-to-head, with a 12/88 revenue split for Epic and developers as opposed to Valve’s 30/70 split, gamers who are used to the literally thousands of titles available on Steam may be surprised to see just how few titles are currently available on Epic’s service. There are three, not counting Fortnite itself: Ashen, Hello Neighbor, and an exclusive game, Hades, built by Supergiant Games, which is also responsible for Bastion and Pyre.

    Darksiders III will join the service on December 14, with future games including Genesis Alpha One, Journey (a former PlayStation 3 exclusive), Maneater, Outer Wilds, Rebel Galaxy Outlaw, Satisfactory, Super Meat Boy Forever, The Pathless, and World War Z. It wouldn’t be surprising to see more titles move to Epic, despite the currently anemic selection, for a very simple reason: discovery. One of Steam’s largest problems, and an issue that’s been identified by a number of current developers, is that the avalanche of titles on the service makes it extremely difficult to create any kind of buzz or consumer awareness of a new game unless you have access to a AAA game’s marketing budget. Granted, people aren’t going to fight to be on a platform that no one is using, but the sheer success of Fortnite means Epic has a vast potential audience of players already. Launching a store effort when its game is enjoying such phenomenal success is a shrewd move by the company.



    And hard as it is to remember, Steam itself launched with just a handful of titles, once upon a time. Granted, it had more than four — Valve didn’t launch Steam until Half-Life 2 was available, which means it also shipped out with Half-Life and its expansion pack, and various mods like Counter-Strike and Day of Defeat. At the very least, it’ll be interesting to see how the market responds to the availability of a new service intended to serve as a distribution point for multiple publishers rather than focusing on a single company the way uPlay or EA’s Origin do. As we’ve previously discussed, GOG is the closest competitor to Steam — and that company’s insistence on a DRM-free gaming experience, while laudable, also limits its ability to compete commercially with a service that does integrate DRM capabilities. Epic will allow games to use their own DRM solutions, as well as supporting games made with both Unreal Engine 4 and Unity.

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