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General: BioWare to use Hero Engine

StraddenStradden Managing EditorHalifax, NSPosts: 6,696Member Common

A new detail has fallen into place in the puzzle that has been the BioWare Austin project. While the game's title and theme remain a mystery, we now know that the new game will make use of the Hero engine, originally developed by Simutronics and used in Hero's Journey:

 


BioWare Licenses Simutronics HeroEngine for MMO Game Project

Simutronics announced today its first licensee for its new HeroEngine, a complete integrated platform for development of massively multiplayer online (MMO) roleplaying games (RPGs).

BioWare Austin will use HeroEngine for development of its new MMO project. This game will be the first project for the new Bioware Austin studio. BioWare is one of the leading developers of interactive games, with many hit titles including Jade Empire, Neverwinter Nights, and Star Wars® Knights of the Old Republic.

MMO games are the fastest growing segment of the video games market, with $2 billion in global revenues and growing at a projected $1 billion per year according to DFC Intelligence. Millions of people around the world come together in online games such as World of Warcraft, EverQuest, and Star Wars Galaxies to cooperate and compete with each other.

“At BioWare we selected HeroEngine because it had the most sophisticated and complete development tools available for building an amazing online experience,” said Gordon Walton, Co-Studio Director of BioWare Austin. “Our team wanted a great rapid prototyping environment and to work with experienced MMO developers. The HeroEngine from Simutronics is a perfect fit for BioWare Austin’s requirements."

Simutronics demonstrated HeroEngine in its booth at the recent Electronics Entertainment Expo (E3) and will be showing it again at the Austin Game Conference (AGC) in Austin on September 6th-8th. Simutronics spent the past five years developing this new platform, and has recently begun making HeroEngine available to developers to create their own massively multiplayer online games.

“We are thrilled to have BioWare Austin using HeroEngine,” said David Whatley, founder and CEO of Simutronics. “As game developers ourselves, we put careful thought into the features other MMO developers needed. To have an industry leader like BioWare as our first licensee is an honor and strong validation of our team’s hard work and great design.”

Cheers,
Jon Wood
Managing Editor
MMORPG.com

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Comments

  • PhoenixsPhoenixs Norway /Posts: 2,646Member
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.

  • Shanks123Shanks123 Newburgh, NYPosts: 100Member
    i cant wait to see what kind of game bioware is amking

    I'm Here. I'm Awesome. Get Used To It.

  • TechleoTechleo Grants Pass, ORPosts: 1,984Member
    Im realy please that Simutornics managed to get bioware to use there amazing engine. Honestly once youve seen Hero's Journey in action you can understand why the big publishers were so easily wooed. The engine allows for some downright amazing quest constuction and the animations are stunning! The first time I saw a charecter running around in the game and the charecters leg articulated to the rock it was on I was hooked. Im realy curious to see what bioware does with the engine. Personally im still all jazzed and waiting for HJ tho, GO SIMUTRONICS!!

  • AnofalyeAnofalye Quebec, QCPosts: 7,433Member

    Wonderful!

    If anything, this raise my HYPE for both projects.

    Currently re-playing the BGs games, and just have to say something...it is wonderful!  I am definitely looking forward BioWare MMOs, and I was always mildly interested with Hero's Journey, might be a good PH in the meanwhile, until BioWare hit the market!  I still dislike stuff in HJ, like their opinion on Game Balancing once the product is released.  Not that bad, but after CoH let's say I am overreacting against nerfs! 

    Not like ANY game can be competition, they all feature lame end-games enforcing, end-games completely unrelated to the game itself.  BioWare is positionning itself to rake all the benefits.

    Unless I miscalculate WAR, but I think the PvP will be to enforced, just as it was the case in DAoC, which in the long run will cost them much loyalty...a shame, with the strong franchise they have they COULD beat WoW(just like BioWare wills), all depend on the quality of the product itself.

    Really, the only game that might challenge BioWare content-wise is HJ, they both use the same engine, there is a good reason for that.  I have nothing against content-less games, as long as they are FUN and can maintain my interest without enforcing lames gameplays, such a raiding.  Or at least add more in the expansion if I max stuff...not putting lame gameplays where bots outdo humans (best raiding guilds use 4 times more bots than humans, they completely outmatch guilds with similar amount of players rather than bots, as the healing rotation is perfect, they have 1 player to adapt as needed the healing while all bots never fail their rotation, and so on).

      BioWare 

     Hero's Journey 

     City of Villains

     WAR

     Other released "MMOs" 

    - "If I understand you well, you are telling me until next time. " - Ren

  • TechleoTechleo Grants Pass, ORPosts: 1,984Member
     Im totaly going to aggree with you Anofayle. Though Im heavily intrested in Hero's Journey. I play myself and realy havent had to deal with Nerfs per say. Being a scrapper Claw I sorta just fit in no matter what I do lol. Albeit lately Ive become the Kamakazi Spinning Claw of Death ever since I figured out how to time my jump

  • CelestianCelestian DFW, TXPosts: 1,136Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Phoenixs
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.


    And just what do you mean by that? Have you see the shots of HJ? Looks pretty damn good graphically.

  • VallenarVallenar Madison, WIPosts: 124Member

    This should cut down on their game production time.

    Instead of 3-4 years of development time we could see a game from these guys in 2 years.

    Like other posters have commented on I sure hope they can put together a better looking game than Hero.

  • DrathdirDrathdir St. Charles, MOPosts: 3Member
    I think people are confusing Hero Online and Hero's Journey.

    Hero's Journey looks very promising, and it's gorgeous. :)


  • DeserttFoxxDeserttFoxx North York, ONPosts: 2,389Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Phoenixs
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.


    What makes you say something like this? Heros journey, the only game being made with the hero engine isnt even out yet. And if youwatch the movies, look at the screen and read what is promissed you will see that what simultronics can do with their system. Heros journey will be one of the best MMO's  in 2007, just because the company doesnt have some tyrant liike SoE funding them so they can whore up the advertising, dont count this company out.

    Have you actually watched the movies? and seen their interactive enviroment in action? or Seen their dynamic casting, character customization? have you gone to the website and actually read any of the faqs, read any of the articles, looked at any screenshots? I highly doubt it, otherwise you wouldnt of said soemthing so foolish.

    And Hero online And Heros JOURNEY are 2 different games that you guys seem to be confusing, should pay attention before you talk down a game. Hero online isnt even simultronics, and even if it was, have you played that game, why would bioware buy that system.

    Quotations Those Who make peaceful resolutions impossible, make violent resolutions inevitable. John F. Kennedy

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  • AlienShoresAlienShores Denver, COPosts: 79Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Drathdir
    I think people are confusing Hero Online and Hero's Journey.

    Hero's Journey looks very promising, and it's gorgeous. :)



    QFE on both sentences there :)

    I'm really looking forward to Hero's Journey - NOT Hero Online - and I have this feeling that if they can deliver on what they've been promising we're in for a truly great MMORPG.  Online time will tell of course, but I do find it pretty encouraging to see that BioWare is their first engine licensee.  We all know BioWare doesn't screw around so the Hero Engine (again, not Hero Online ) must have more than just the eye candy we've seen in their screenshots.  As someone else already said, this gets me more excited for both games now.
  • PhoenixsPhoenixs Norway /Posts: 2,646Member


    Originally posted by Celestian

    Originally posted by Phoenixs
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.


    And just what do you mean by that? Have you see the shots of HJ? Looks pretty damn good graphically.





    Originally posted by DeserttFoxx

    Originally posted by Phoenixs
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.


    What makes you say something like this? Heros journey, the only
    game being made with the hero engine isnt even out yet. And if youwatch
    the movies, look at the screen and read what is promissed you will see
    that what simultronics can do with their system. Heros journey will be
    one of the best MMO's  in 2007, just because the company doesnt have
    some tyrant liike SoE funding them so they can whore up the
    advertising, dont count this company out.

    Have you actually watched the movies? and seen their interactive
    enviroment in action? or Seen their dynamic casting, character
    customization? have you gone to the website and actually read any of
    the faqs, read any of the articles, looked at any screenshots? I highly
    doubt it, otherwise you wouldnt of said soemthing so foolish.


    Seen screenshots: Check
    Seen movies: Check
    Read info: Check

    It just doesn't work for me. First of all it's the dull, ugly and boring art. There is no style all screenshots look like a mishmash of different things. Character. Generated trees. Ground. Enemy. They all feel like they are from seperate worlds, and not from one. Many characters look ugly, almost grotesque. I do like the "cat" people though. And the biggest letdown for me, the world. Where are the open flowing plains, forests, deserts? It all looks "on the rail" fps levels not a living breathing world. I haven't seen a single screenshot so far where the area isn't limited by some sort of barrier. This + instancing is a terrible, terrible sign for me.

    What the gameplay will be like I can't say anything about. Maybe it will be great in that department. But the graphics/world currently utterly dissapoint me.

    And I'm not confusing HJ with Hero Online.
  • AlienShoresAlienShores Denver, COPosts: 79Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by Phoenixs

    Seen screenshots: Check
    Seen movies: Check
    Read info: Check

    It just doesn't work for me. First of all it's the dull, ugly and boring art. There is no style all screenshots look like a mishmash of different things. Character. Generated trees. Ground. Enemy. They all feel like they are from seperate worlds, and not from one. Many characters look ugly, almost grotesque. I do like the "cat" people though. And the biggest letdown for me, the world. Where are the open flowing plains, forests, deserts? It all looks "on the rail" fps levels not a living breathing world. I haven't seen a single screenshot so far where the area isn't limited by some sort of barrier. This + instancing is a terrible, terrible sign for me.

    What the gameplay will be like I can't say anything about. Maybe it will be great in that department. But the graphics/world currently utterly dissapoint me.

    And I'm not confusing HJ with Hero Online.

    Well I can see where you're coming from.  I disagree on the art, but that's entirely subjective.  You are definitely right about there being no screenshots of wide open areas and large scale landscapes.  I checked and couldn't find a single one that fits the bill.  I think I'm optimistic about that aspect of their game engine.   I like where they are going with gameplay on paper at least and they have a good track record, albeit this will be their first really graphical game.

    I've been jaded about MMORPGs for long enough.  I guess I'm allowing myself to look forward to a couple again and this is one of them. :)
  • WoodenDummyWoodenDummy -, WAPosts: 208Member


    Originally posted by Phoenixs
    Let's hope they produce better results than what Simutronics has done with it.


    Are you kidding me!?  HJ looks GREAT running.

    image

    image

  • JestorRodoJestorRodo Posts: 2,642Member Uncommon
    Pray that the new engine is for the New Star Wars MMO!

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  • WolfwargWolfwarg Middle EarthPosts: 12Member


    Originally posted by Techleo
    Im realy please that Simutornics managed to get bioware to use there amazing engine. Honestly once youve seen Hero's Journey in action you can understand why the big publishers were so easily wooed.


    There's a bunch of E3 2006 vids of Hero's Journey on You Tube if you want to see char creation, movement etc.. Of course Biowares implimentation may be quite different, but you get to see what the engine is like.
    Unfortunately though the vids are low res versions of video of a monitor, so the quality is pretty crap.
    Here's an example though if you are interested
  • LaterisLateris Phoenix, AZPosts: 1,758Member Uncommon
    I am praying- LET IT BE THE NEW STAR WARS MMO!
  • What a let down this is! I thought for sure Bioware was going to use one of the high performance 3D engines: Unreal engine 3, Cryengine 2, or at least Gamebryo 2.

    Hero's Journey looks pretty bad...are the characters suppose to look like mongoloids? Could it be that the Hero's Journey development team just doesn't know how to use the Heroengine?

    Yeah, I'm totally disappointed by this, but then again I'm use to being disappointed by this genre...

    OMG! I just had a dreadful thought...Baldur's Gate Online with the Heroengine at it's core! Well, there goes another perfectly good IP down the drain.


  • ShadowZEROShadowZERO Santa Cruz, CAPosts: 102Member
    out of all the engines bioware could have chosen, why do you think they picked this one? You seem to think the hero engine is inferior to the others you mentioned.  if so, why would bioware lisense it if they could have any engine on the market today?  I seriously doubt bioware made a foolish choice here.  Also, all you mention is the look of HJ as a reason you don't like the engine.  there's much more to a game engine than just how it looks.

    The hero engine is developed specifically for mmorpgs unlike most other engines, and it provides all the tools necessary to make an mmo. And if you speak with any of the GM's who are actually using it, you'd find out that it is a far more complete solution for making an mmorpg than anything else on the market today.


  • RemyVorenderRemyVorender Riverside, RIPosts: 3,495Member Uncommon
    Wow, suprising yet wonderful news. Bioware is one of my favorite developers. Good luck with whatever you decide to do with the engine. 

    Played: AA, AC1, AC2, Aion, AO, AoC, CO, CoX, DAoC, DCUO, DN, EVE, EQ1, EQ2,
    ESO, FE, FFXI, FFXIV, FF, GW1, GW2, Istaria, L2, LoTRO, MO, MxO, NW, Rift, RoE,
    Ryzom, SB, SWG, SWTOR, TERA, TSW, WAR, WoW, WURM...

  • twitch242twitch242 copenhagenPosts: 177Member Uncommon

    HJ looks fine to me, not sure what people dont like in it, if we are talkiing art style, it do vary from person to person remember ! I cant get hyped over Bioware though, this will likely be a crossplatform game.


  • MisterJawMisterJaw San Jose, CAPosts: 49Member


    Originally posted by poopypants
    What a let down this is! I thought for sure Bioware was going to use one of the high performance 3D engines: Unreal engine 3, Cryengine 2, or at least Gamebryo 2.

    Hero's Journey looks pretty bad...are the characters suppose to look like mongoloids? Could it be that the Hero's Journey development team just doesn't know how to use the Heroengine?

    Yeah, I'm totally disappointed by this, but then again I'm use to being disappointed by this genre...

    OMG! I just had a dreadful thought...Baldur's Gate Online with the Heroengine at it's core! Well, there goes another perfectly good IP down the drain.


    #1 - HJ looks awesome and promises REVOLUTIONARY gameplay mechanics.

    #2 - Bioware will not be using HJ art resources.  Duh.

    #3 - Pretty graphics do not do a damned thing for gameplay, though the HJ engine does have GORGEOUS graphics.  Mongloids, indeed...

    #4 - The troll has been fed.  Enjoy!

  • chevyordeathchevyordeath Des Moines, IAPosts: 3Member
    Hmm.. I heard about this a few days ago. Indeed it sounds interesting. I heard it could be a new Star Wars game. Deep in my heart I am secretly hoping they are making Fallout MMORPG... =D As they still hold the rights to a Fallout MMORPG even though they sold the rights to Fallout to Bethesda, I think. My memory is a little foggy right now. But a Fallout, or new Star Wars mmorpg would be very sweet.

    Bioware


  • VyelVyel Easton, PAPosts: 41Member


    Originally posted by chevyordeath
    Hmm.. I heard about this a few days ago. Indeed it sounds interesting. I heard it could be a new Star Wars game. Deep in my heart I am secretly hoping they are making Fallout MMORPG... =D As they still hold the rights to a Fallout MMORPG even though they sold the rights to Fallout to Bethesda, I think. My memory is a little foggy right now. But a Fallout, or new Star Wars mmorpg would be very sweet.

    Bioware



    BioWare never held the rights to Fallout. You're thinking about Interplay. Interplay owned Black Isle Studios which used to work very closely with BioWare. Interplay then shut down Black Isle Studios. A lot of the core people went on to form Obsidian Entertainment. But it's Interplay that has always owned the rights to Fallout.
  • DrathdirDrathdir St. Charles, MOPosts: 3Member
    But a Fallout MMO sure would be fun ...

  • chevyordeathchevyordeath Des Moines, IAPosts: 3Member


    Originally posted by Vyel

    Originally posted by chevyordeath
    Hmm.. I heard about this a few days ago. Indeed it sounds interesting. I heard it could be a new Star Wars game. Deep in my heart I am secretly hoping they are making Fallout MMORPG... =D As they still hold the rights to a Fallout MMORPG even though they sold the rights to Fallout to Bethesda, I think. My memory is a little foggy right now. But a Fallout, or new Star Wars mmorpg would be very sweet.

    Bioware



    BioWare never held the rights to Fallout. You're thinking about Interplay. Interplay owned Black Isle Studios which used to work very closely with BioWare. Interplay then shut down Black Isle Studios. A lot of the core people went on to form Obsidian Entertainment. But it's Interplay that has always owned the rights to Fallout.

    Yeah, thats it. Lol, my bad, it was late and my brain wasn't working. Interplay sold the rights, but they worked out a deal so that they kept rights to any MMORPG, if they ever decided to go that route. I think that's what I recall reading.
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