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    Unreal Engine 4.20 Released

    By khawk, in News,

    Epic Games today launched Unreal Engine 4.20, enabling developers to build the most realistic characters and immersive environments across games, film and TV, VR/AR/MR and enterprise applications.
    Unreal Engine 4.20 combines the latest real-time rendering advancements with improved creative tools, making it even easier to ship blockbuster games across all platforms. With hundreds of optimizations, especially for iOS, Android and Nintendo Switch - which have been built for Fortnite and are now rolled into Unreal Engine 4.20 and released to all users - Epic is delivering on its promises to give developers the scalable tools they need to succeed.
    Artists working in visual effects, animation, broadcast, and virtual production can also take advantage of the latest enhancements for digital humans, VFX, cinematic depth of field and more to create stunningly sophisticated images across all forms of media and entertainment.
    In the enterprise space, Unreal Studio 4.20 includes upgrades to the UE4 Datasmith plugin suite, such as SketchUp support, which make it even easier to get CAD data prepped, imported and working beautifully in Unreal Engine. These improvements are driving photorealistic real-time visualization across automotive design, architectural design, manufacturing, and more.
    Key features within Unreal Engine 4.20 include:
    New Proxy LOD System: Handle sprawling worlds with ease via UE4's production-ready Proxy LOD system for the easy reduction of rendering cost due to poly count, draw calls and material complexity. Proxy LOD yields huge gains when developing for mobile and console platforms. 

    Smoother Mobile Experience: Well over 100 mobile optimizations developed firsthand for Fortnite come to all 4.20 users, marking a major shift for easy shippability and seamless gameplay optimization across platforms. Major enhancements include improved Android debugging, mobile Landscape improvements, RHI thread on Android and occlusion queries on mobile.

    Better for Switch: Epic has significantly improved Nintendo Switch development by releasing tons of performance and memory improvements built for Fortnite on Nintendo Switch to 4.20 users as well.
    Niagara VFX (early access): Unreal Engine's new programmable VFX editor, Niagara, is now available in early access and will help developers take their VFX to the next level. This new suite of tools is built from the ground up to give artists unprecedented control over particle simulation, rendering and performance, for more sophisticated visuals. This tool will eventually replace the Unreal Cascade particle editor. Watch this GDC talk to learn more. 

    Cinematic Depth of Field: Unreal Engine 4.20 delivers tools for achieving depth of field at true cinematic quality in any scene. This brand new implementation replaces the Circle DOF method. It's faster, cleaner and provides a cinematic appearance through the use of a procedural bokeh simulation. Cinematic DOF also supports alpha channel, dynamic resolution stability, and has multiple settings for scaling up or down on console platforms based on project requirements. This feature debuted at the Game Developers Conference as part of the Star Wars "Reflections" demo by Epic, ILMxLAB, and NVIDIA.

    Digital Humans Improvements: In-engine tools now include dual lobe specular/double Beckman specular models, backscatter transmission in lights, boundary bleed color subsurface scattering, iris normal slot for eyes, and screen space irradiance to build the most cutting-edge digital humans in games and beyond. All users now have access to the same tools used on Epic's "Siren" and "Digital Andy Serkis" demos shown at this year's Game Developers Conference. Check out the updated Photorealistic Human sample, which has been updated to include the static bust from "Meet Mike," revealed at SIGGRAPH 2017.

    Proven, Exclusive Cross-Platform Capabilities: Developers only have to create their game once when building with Unreal Engine. Use the same content and gameplay across any device to deliver experiences anywhere players want to enjoy them.
    Live Record & Replay: First shown at this year's Game Developers Conference, all developers now have access to code from Epic's Fortnite Replay system. Content creators can easily use footage of recorded gameplay sessions to create incredible replay videos.
    Sequencer Cinematic Updates: Creating real-time cinematic content has never been easier with Sequencer. New features include frame accuracy, media tracking, curve editor/evaluation, anim instance control, and Final Cut Pro 7 XML import/export.
    Shotgun Integration: Shotgun, one of the industry's leading production management and asset tracking solutions, is now supported in 4.20. This will streamline workflows for Shotgun users in game development who are leveraging Unreal's real-time performance. Shotgun users can assign tasks to specific assets within Unreal Engine, making the latest content and associated data easily available for review.
    Improved Support for Live Broadcast: UE 4.20 now offers greater support for users leveraging the engine in broadcast, from virtual sets to virtual production to eSports. UE 4.20 includes support for AJA Video Systems' KONA 4 and Corvid 44 video cards with a plugin for HD/SDI video and audio input and output, enabling seamless integration of AR and CG graphics in live broadcast transmissions.
    Mixed Reality Capture Support (early access): Users with virtual production workflows now have mixed reality capture support that includes video input, calibration, and in-game compositing. Supported webcams and HDMI capture devices enable users to pull real world green screened video into the engine, and supported tracking devices can match your camera location to the in-game camera for more dynamic shots.

    Robust AR Support: Unreal Engine 4.20 ships with native support for ARKit 2, which includes features for creating shared, collaborative AR experiences. Also included is the latest support for Magic Leap One, Google ARCore 1.2 support. Be sure to check out the new FaceAR sample project that is now available with this release.
    In addition, key improvements to Unreal Studio 4.20 include:
    Datasmith for SketchUp: Unreal Studio's Datasmith workflow toolkit for streamlining transfer of CAD data into Unreal Engine now supports SketchUp. Save hours by automatically converting SketchUp cameras, materials, and geometry into UE assets. This plugin also includes support for layers, groups, and components, as well as units, scale, pivot points, and instances. SketchUp materials are automatically converted to a matching SketchUp material in Unreal Engine for greater simplicity.
    Metadata Control: Import metadata from 3ds Max, SketchUp, and other common CAD tools for the opportunity to batch process objects by property, or expose metadata via scripts. Metadata enables more creative uses of Unreal Studio, such as Python script commands for updating all meshes of a certain type, or displaying relevant information in interactive experiences.
    Mesh Editing Tools: Unreal Engine now includes a basic mesh editing toolset for quick, simple fixes to imported geometry without having to fix them in the source package and re-import. These tools are ideal for simple touch-ups without having to go to another application. Datasmith also now includes a base Python script that can generate Level Of Detail (LOD) meshes automatically.
    Non-Destructive Re-Import: Achieve faster iteration through the new parameter tracking system, which monitors updates in both the source data and Unreal Editor, and only imports changed elements. Previous changes to the scene within Unreal Editor are retained and reapplied when source data updates.
    For a full features list and additional details, please visit: https://www.unrealengine.com/en-US/blog/unreal-engine-4-20-released

    jbadams
    Unity® software is one of the most popular options for beginning and established indie developers.  With a great feature set and range of target platforms it’s a very attractive choice.  The popularity of Unity® software is in no small part thanks to a very liberal free license tier which allows developers grossing less than $100k annual revenue to use the fully featured engine at no cost.
    While it’s reasonable to expect that Unity Technologies would try to attract developers on the free tier to upgrade to a Unity Plus or Unity Pro license, it would seem some developers have been the subject of dishonest hard sale tactics and even some coercion.
    We’ve spoken to several developers, and it seems there is a pattern to these aggressive sales tactics beginning with a message like the following:


    Nothing is particularly amiss here.  The message is polite, not overly pushy, and simply invites discussion of an upgrade.  Unfortunately, however, it seems this “cold call” style message is a little dishonest.  Several of the developers we have spoken to have received this message despite no mention of their project on LinkedIn, and at least two are not even registered on the platform.
    The above message has then been followed up with a message suggesting developers are in violation of Unity® software licensing terms due to a higher revenue than the allowed $100k.

    Now, these aren’t big-name developers with highly successful projects receiving the messages.  Some trivial investigation of the developers’ social accounts or websites would reveal they have not earned anywhere close to the limit.

    One developer Tweeted:

    Mike Berg of We Heart Games (who kindly provided the above images) had the following to say:
    At the time of writing, Unity Technologies has not responded to our request for comments, but have been in contact with some of the affected developers.  Mike Berg has kindly shared part of his exchange, which you can view in full on Twitter, and we have included part of here:
     

    Hopefully, the follow up from Unity Technologies and reduction of automated processes prevents similar incidents from happening in future, though in at least some cases it seems it’s too late to win back customers who have received the messages and are now considering alternative options.
     
    The Unity logo and Unity product names are the property of Unity Technologies.
     

    khawk

    GDC 2019 Call for Submissions

    By khawk, in News,

    UBM Tech Game Network, the organizers of the Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2019, are accepting submissions to present lectures, roundtables, panels and tutorials from now until Thursday, August 16th at 11:59 PM PT. This will be the 33rd edition of GDC, the world’s largest and longest-running event for game developers, and organizers are keen to feature cutting-edge insights from experts across the game industry. GDC 2019 is returning to the Moscone Center in San Francisco, March 18-22, 2019.
    This is the initial call for submissions, which encompasses everything intended for the Main Conference Tracks on Wednesday-Friday, as well as day-long tutorials taking place Monday and Tuesday at GDC 2019. Proposals can be submitted via the official GDC website. Those interested in submitting for any of the GDC Summits (AI, Community Management, Educators, Game Narrative, Mobile, Indie, or UX) or VRDC (all of which take place on the Monday & Tuesday of the event) or Friday’s Game Career Seminar should know that the call for submissions will open later: August 30 through October 10, 2018. Select call for submissions for other Tutorials will also be open later in the year.
    The GDC Advisory Board is currently seeking submissions from game developers with expertise in any of the following tracks: Advocacy; Audio; Business & Marketing; Design; Production & Team Management; Programming; and Visual Arts. Those interested should first review the submission guidelines and track topics prior to submitting. They should also know that the submission process is divided into a three-phase system:
    Phase I – open call for submissions and initial advisory board review Phase II – submission declines or conditional Phase 2 acceptances sent, pending the submission of additional requested materials for advisory board review Phase III – review of Phase 2 resubmissions and final acceptances and declines sent The GDC Advisory Board will review and determine submissions based on the criteria of concept, depth, organization, credentials and takeaway.
    GDC organizers aim to achieve diversity of voice, experience and perspective. When considering who would be best to speak on behalf of a company or department, it is strongly encouraged to take this goal into consideration.
    For more details on the submission process or GDC 2019 in general visit the show’s official website, or subscribe to regular updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS. The GDC Vault website - www.gdcvault.com - offers access to a wide variety of GDC and VRDC@GDC 2018 lectures and sessions, including speaker slides, synchronized video and presentations for select sponsor lectures, as well as a broad range of free conference videos. GDC All Access Pass holders and individual Vault subscribers will get access to hundreds of video sessions from this and previous GDC shows. Official photos are available via the Official GDC Flickr account: www.flickr.com/photos/officialgdc/.

    khawk
    On Thursday July 19, VRX is hosting a webinar with senior execs at Google, HTC Vive and SuperData Research, to assess the current state of the industry and the strategies for bringing immersive tech to its commercial potential.
    Register for the webinar (and/or to be sent the recording) here: https://bit.ly/2JaYrdl
    With a panel of experts:
    Steven Kan, Head of Global Strategy, AR and VR, Google Vinay Narayan, Executive Director, VR, HTC Vive Stephanie Llamas, VP of Strategy and Head of XR, SuperData Research Discussion chaired by: Amy Peck, Founder & CEO, EndeavorVR

    Key discussion points:
    What’s really happened with VR & AR in the last 12 months – and what’s the 2019 outlook? Where’s the smart money and focus heading and why? What VR & AR applications are working for business now – and what’s coming next? Virtual consumers: Who are they? What do they want? And can we deliver on it yet? It’s on Thursday July 19 @ 11.00am PT – register to join, or to receive the recordings later, here: https://bit.ly/2JaYrdl
    For more information on this webinar, or the upcoming VRX 2018 conference (San Francisco, December 6-7), contact Pete Carkeek at pcarkeek@vr-intelligence.com.
    You can also learn more about the VRX conference and get a 15% discount in the GameDev.net industry events calendar:
     

    khawk
    When it comes to creating a vehicle interior, attention to detail is everything. From the stitches to the grain of the leather, from the patterns of the speaker covers to the dashboard displays, it all matters. To help make that process significantly easier, Allegorithmic has released a set of customizable materials covering every component of the interior of a vehicle. Whether a designer is looking to show off the inside of a million-dollar car for prospective buyers or recreate a weathered vehicle with cracked leather seats for a video game, the new interior collection has something for everyone. 
    The latest release consists of 400 materials, offering multiple options for each interior component, including textiles, leathers, metals, woods and plastic for everything from upholstery to dashboard readouts. Since leather is such a common material in car design, Allegorithmic created 12 types of leather skins, each of which can be altered to reflect different colors, thickness and conditions. Once the fabric has been selected, additional options allow for full customization of the upholstery, down to the stitches used and the bulges created through around the seams.
    Materials are also available for dashboards and center consoles ranging from a modern plastic gloss to wood grain. To keep up with the increasingly complex displays favored by modern vehicles, Allegorithmic also introduced a wide range of display options, from manual meters and knobs to digitized screens capable of playing animations and videos that can be dropped directly into the design. Users can create something for today or something that may be seen in the far future all by using drag and drop options.
    To round out the interior, several fabrics like alcantara microfibers can be used to create the rest, including seatbelts, carpeting and the interior roof. Additional touches including speaker covers created to mimic different types of mesh patterns and styles are also available, or you can leave them uncovered. Once the foundation is set, designers can then add finishing touches, including light reflection and shadow, or wear and tear to show what the car may look like after rugged use.
    “We’ve worked with automotive experts and listened to automotive companies to create everything auto designers need, but we wanted to go even further,” said Nicolas Paulhac, Product Manager and Color, Material and Finish Designer at Allegorithmic. “These materials will offer everything you need to create a photorealistic vehicle from the initial prototyping to the final polish, but artists in multiple industries like fashion, consumer goods and architecture should be able to find countless uses for them as well.”
    Today’s release marks the fifth and final release of Allegorithmic’s automotive materials collection. With 700 new materials added to the ever-growing Substance Source library since June 4, designers of all skill levels can quickly and easily find everything they need to recreate a real car for a showroom floor, or design something totally original to populate an existing 3D model, game or video. Allegorithmic is also offering the “Taurillon Leather Medium Worn” and “Laser Cut White Norway Spruce” materials from the interior collection at no cost to Substance Source users, giving them ample opportunities to test the materials.
    Created in 2016, Substance Source has grown into an unmatched repository of ready-to-use materials perfect for amateurs and professionals alike. With over 1,600 materials to choose from, the ability to turn customizable materials into incredible works of art is now even easier.
    Pricing/Availability
    Substance Source is included in the subscription price for Substance at no additional cost. Individual and pro plans are also available, running $19.90 and $99 per month, respectively. Both plans include 30 material downloads per month. Enterprise licenses are available on demand.

    khawk
    Epic Games has announced a sweeping change to the Unreal Engine Marketplace, whereby creators on the store will now receive 88% of their product sales, an increase from the common 70% / 30% split of other digital stores.
    The Unreal Engine Marketplace is a digital store targeting the Unreal Engine community, and enabling game developers to purchase digital content sold by 3D modelers, digital artists, sound designers, and animators, and use those assets in their own projects. Many successful UE4-powered games, such as ARK: Survival Evolved and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds made use of Marketplace content in their development.
    This new 88% (developer) / 12% (store) revenue split applies to all Unreal Engine Marketplace transactions past, present, and future. In addition to implementing the policy for future sales, Epic is paying out all Marketplace sellers retroactively, applying the more creator-friendly 88% rate to previous transactions dating back to the store’s 2014 launch. 

    “Thanks to both the Marketplace’s growth and the success of Fortnite, Epic now conducts a huge volume of digital commerce,” said Tim Sweeney, founder and CEO of Epic. “The resulting economies of scale enable us to pass the savings along to the Unreal Engine Marketplace community, while also making a healthy profit for Epic.”
    The Unreal Engine ecosystem is growing faster than ever, with Epic confirming:
    As of July 2018, more than 6.3 million users have chosen Unreal Engine 4, an increase of more than 1 million users since March. In the first half of 2018, the Unreal Engine Marketplace experienced 30% growth in active sellers. There are now over 1,500 creators offering more than 5,000 curated products on the Marketplace.  There have been nearly 8 million downloads from the Marketplace since the store’s launch in 2014.  There have been more than 1 million downloads of the free Paragon assets to date, representing $300 billion in total value to the development community.  More information can be found at unrealengine.com/blog. 
     

    khawk
    Unity 2018.2 is now available and it continues the 2018 cycle with a range of improvements and new features which allow 2D and 3D developers on any hardware to achieve beautiful graphics and high-end performance. Future innovations that will revolutionize AR development, make creating connected games easier, and enable further success of the world’s highest earning gaming community also debuted during last month’s Unite Berlin developer conference. 
    Assets for each feature and interviews are available by request. Key highlights coming in the future include (view the blog post for more):
    Unity powers 50% of all new gaming experiences, reaches 3 billion devices worldwide, and generated 24 billion downloads in 2017. Unity 2018.2 introduces key features such as 2D Sprite Shape, which gives designers the power to sculpt and bend worlds using a visual layout tool, and a new 2D animation system that makes it easy to create animated characters that consist of a single sprite.
    Next Level Graphics and Performance by Default - Unity 2018 is a major upgrade which introduces the start of several innovations, including the Scriptable Render Pipelines and the Entity Component System, which make it easier and faster to achieve beautiful graphics and high-end performance.

    Unity and Google Making it Easier to Create Connected Games - Connected games are the most played, watched and successful experiences today. Making connected games is a challenging endeavor that requires resources, technology, and knowledge -- a hard feat for developers large and small. Unity and Google are reducing this barrier by introducing a suite of features to Unity 2018.2 designed to enable connected games including game server hosting and game-specific services such as an open source matchmaking project developed by Unity and Google.
    Mixed and Augmented Reality Studio (MARS) - Unity is delivering on the promise of AR by giving creators the power to build applications that intelligently interact with any environment. Project MARS allows developers to build for the real world: creating engrossing multi-plane experiences that will work indoors, outdoors, and everywhere in between without requiring complex lines of code.  
    Machine Learning Gives Animators More Power - Kinematica generates smooth, natural-looking movements by applying machine learning to any data source. This eliminates the need for complex animation webs or blend trees so that creators can iterate faster and focus on their art.
    New Prefab Workflows - Unity spoke to a wide range of indie and AAA studios to understand the needs of teams working with Prefabs. This has led to the creation of the new Prefab workflow, which is a faster, more efficient, and safer way to edit Prefabs. New features include support for nesting and inheritance, and the ability to apply overrides on multiple levels of granularity. The new Prefab workflow preview is available to try now.
    Creators using Unity have generated more than $12.4 billion USD over the last 18 months. Unity is helping creators improve how they monetize by allowing them to tailor the game advertising experience for each player. Using Personalized Placements, creators can take advantage of a prediction engine that determines what to show each player based on what will drive the highest engagement and lifetime value.
    Furthermore, Unity is powering the next wave of creative and gorgeous games including GTFO (10 Chambers Collective), Oddworld: Soulstorm (Oddworld Inhabitants), Ori and the Will of the Wisps (Moon Studios), Harold Halibut (Slow Bros.) and Overcooked 2 (Ghost Town Games). More information about each of these titles will be revealed in the coming months.
    More information about the future of Unity will be on display during Unite Los Angeles (October 23-25). 

    Atlantica
    Georgia Game Developers Association announced CIMFest 2018 for July 14!
    This weekend, on July 14th, the Georgia Game Developers Association is holding their third annual Columbus Interactive Media Festival (CIMFest). This event is a yearly programmed event that brings together a variety game industry talents throughout the heart of Georgia and looking to support the growing network of southern game developers and students throughout the region.

    CIMFest is a single day event hosted by Columbus State University,  held at the Student Davidson Center. Check-in will start around 9AM EST and will conclude around 6PM EST. CIMFest will be featuring guest speakers like Chris Patterson, owner of Bricks and Minifigs in Columbus; Jesse James Allen, editorial director at Falcon’s Creative Group, a theme park and interactive design studio in Orlando; and Joe Cassavaugh, the CEO, designer and engineer of Puzzles by Joe. “We have seen a significant interest in both digital entertainment and video game development from the Columbus area. CIMFest is the perfect opportunity for students and professional developers alike to increase their skills and reach. Anyone interested in game development would benefit from going,” said Andrew Greenberg, Executive Director of the Georgia Game Developers Association.

    This event is open to the public but offers lower rates for GGDA members, Students (School ID required), and CSU Alumni. All attendees will receive full access to all programming associated with this event. Registration is available here for this event, payment will be acquired at the door upon arrival.  More information on scheduled speakers and sessions can be found at the official site for the Georgia Game Developers Association. 



    khawk
    Super Early Registration for IGDA Game Leadership Summit ends in just a few days, Friday, July 13th. Register now for the lowest possible rate: only $125 for IGDA members. $200 for non members.
    The Leadership Summit takes place September 13-14, 2018 at the Austin Convention Center. With 25 influential speakers and tracks focused on Management and Leadership, the Summit's goal is to assist you in maximizing your professional success.
    19 sessions have been hand selected by the advisory board, including these two highlights:
    2 Hour Workshop: I've Been Promoted, What Do I Do Now?
    Promotion from individual contributor to supervisor, manager or executive requires adopting and executing an entirely new set of skills, different from the ones that got you promoted in the first place. This two hour workshop covers strategies for surviving various leadership transitions (defining the differences between supervisor, manager and executive, discussing “day in the life” and outlining critical tasks). [read more here]
    3 Hour Mini-Summit on Starting and Growing A Game Studio
    Are you considering starting your own game studio? Have you already made the leap? Three studio founders join us for this mini-starting-your-own-studio summit within the summit. You'll get the inside dirt on starting up a startup, gain a better understanding on budgets, key partnerships, hiring, accessing funds from government programs, and how you sustain a great game studio after you've survived starting up. These sessions make up this outstanding mini summit: 
    - Considerations Before Starting a Game Studio
    - Tales from the First 5 Years of an Indie Game Studio
    - Ways to Grow and Sustain a Successful Game Studio
    Make sure you view the rest of the schedule and speakers for everything the Leadership Summit has to offer and don't forget to register by Friday, July 13th for the lowest possible rate.
    IGDA Leadership Summit is sponsored in part by:
                        

     
    Learn more at http://gameleadership.com.

    khawk
    The Human Resources Global Game Competition (HRGGC) started on 1st of July and lasts until 31st of July. The competition is a great opportunity for game developers around the world to show off their skills and win amazing prizes. Use your development superpowers, gamify an otherwise pedestrian topic, build your demo, and, hey, you might even be invited to receive your prize in Malaysia!
    HRGGC invites game developers, students, indie studios, and everyone passionate about game development to showcase their skills by making an innovative HR themed game demo. It is a great chance to be part of a unique HR focused projects that aims to enhance Malaysia’s growing place in the world.
    The winning demo will be used by the Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) of Malaysia to train HR personnel and employees all over the country in a modern and interactive way. The best three games will be awarded respectively 2,000 USD, 1,000 USD, and 500 USD as cash prize. It is indeed a competition no game developer should miss!
    Full XP, a Finnish gaming company providing services for gaming and streaming apps, in collaboration with the HRDF, made this competition possible. HRDF is a dynamic organization established in 1993, under the Ministry of Human Resources. Governed by the Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Berhad Act 2001 (PSMB Act 2001), HRDF was given the mandate by the Malaysian Government to catalyse the development of competent local workforce that will contribute to Malaysia’s vision of becoming a high-income economy.
    Learn more at http://www.fullxp.co/.

    khawk
    AMD's GPUOpen initiative has posted a presentation by Adam Sawicki on his experiences porting AAA games to Vulkan and DirectX 12. Sawicki is member of AMD RTG's Game Engineering team. The presentation covers a number of topics a developer will encounter when bringing an existing renderer to the new APIs, including why you might want to do it and optimization and debugging considerations.
    He recently gave the talk at the Digital Dragons 2018 conference in May, and the recording and slides have been made available publicly.
    You can watch the presentation below and download the slides here.
     

    khawk
    The application phase for the gamescom award 2018 has started. Registered exhibitors of gamescom can apply for the most coveted prize of the European computer and video games industry until 11:59 p.m. on 1 August 2018. The gamescom award is presented in a total of 29 categories. This year, however, there are several new aspects to consider: titles that want to have a chance at the gamescom award must be submitted by 1 August to the awards office of the Stiftung Digitale Spielekultur.
    New is that the winners in the categories nominated by the international jury will this year already be announced on the trade visitor and media day of gamescom on 21 August 2018 in the Konrad Adenauer Hall of Congress Centre North. Games or products that can either only be first evaluated by the jury directly at gamescom or are chosen by the public, like "Best Booth" or the gamescom "Most Wanted Consumer Award", will be evaluated via the gamescom app as usual. The winners of these categories will be announced on the gamescom stage on Saturday, 25 August. The award office will be headed by the Stiftung Digitale Spielekultur. This way to the general conditions of participation and to apply for the gamescom award 2018.
    Learn more at http://www.gamescom.global/gamescom_award.

    khawk
    Jose Hidalgo has released a single header C++ command based renderer backend on Github.
    The px_render header is written in C++ 11/14 with no dependencies and simple integration. The API itself is render agnostics and supports OpenGL only with plans to support multiple backends in the future.
    The goals of the project include:
    multithreaded rendering: designed to be used in multithreaded applications command based rendering: build render commands in advance in a separate thread reentrant API: everything is held in a 'Context' class, making it very easy to support multiple windows, etc. no dependencies: portable and easy to extend implicit task graph dependency for single or groups of tasks Hidalgo is hosting px_render in his 'px' PpluX single header C++ library repository at https://github.com/pplux/px. Right now the repository also includes px_sched, which is a task oriented scheduler.
    Click here to learn more.

    g_o
    JSCF is an open source, lightweight 2D canvas library based on vanilla JS and CanvasInput. Its approach is to allow extendibility while adhering to concepts from popular engines like Unity.
    It's still in prototype and is looking to get help and feedback from programmers. Check it out at https://github.com/g--o/JSCF.
    Update: now added API docs! (working with jsdoc)
     


    Sergey Tomilov
    OK.ru, one of Russia’s largest social networks, has tripled mobile game developer payouts to $1.6 mln (100 mln rubles) over the past five months.
    In a move to lure more developers from all over the world, OK.ru will give free traffic to new HTML5 games starting from July 1, 2018.
    There are a lot of opportunities for HTML5 developers in OK as it’s a relatively new platform and a low-competition niche in the social network. That said, the new games can quickly earn revenues and ramp up user base. In May 2018, 50% of payouts in OK were passed to top-5 games.
    The increase in developer payouts was caused by OK’s growing number of mobile users, higher penetration of broadband connectivity and the emergence of new mobile technologies that allow to launch any game inside a mobile web browser. That resulted in doubling the number of daily game launches on OK mobile platform to 350 mln.
    OK has 71 million monthly users. The social network allows users to watch streams in UltraHD, listen to music, buy goods and services inside the network and transfer money to 18 countries. OK is a part of Mail.Ru Group, the largest IT holding company in Eastern Europe.

    khawk
    In the "cool projects from a gamedev" category, Andre Weissflog has open sourced a bare bones C64 emulator written in C99 and compiled to WebAssembly in under 64k:
    You can find the source code at https://github.com/floooh/chips-test/blob/sokol-app/examples/c64.c. 
    Try out the emulator at https://floooh.github.io/oryol-sticky-tests/c64.html.

    If you're not sure what to do, here's a "BASIC" set of commands to try with the emulator:
    10 PRINT "HELLO, WORLD" 20 GOTO 10 RUN By the time I finished this post, I noticed he's also released more WebAssembly emulators, including ZX Spectrum 128 and Acorn Atom: https://floooh.github.io/tiny8bit/.

    Enjoy!

    khawk
    Sketchfab, the leading platform empowering a new era of creativity by making it easy for anyone to publish and find 3D content online, today launched the Sketchfab store out of beta – the most transparent and intuitive place to sell and purchase 3D models online. This launch will allow the platform’s community of 1.5 million creative professionals and hobbyists to monetize their incredible work. At the same time, customers who are working on a wide range of 3D projects – from animation and visual effects to video games, 3D printing, virtual reality, augmented reality and architectural renderings – will finally have the opportunity to purchase tens of thousands of high quality 3D models and textures with confidence thanks to Sketchfab’s first in market “Model Inspector.”
    The Sketchfab Store combines a powerful browser-based 3D player with an advanced “Model Inspector” which allows every aspect of a 3D model, including textures and topology, to be reviewed in real-time. This lets buyers purchase their models with complete confidence, taking the guesswork out of purchasing 3D digital files online. The Sketchfab viewer also supports VR and AR out of the box, providing additional ways to check out the store’s content.
    Since Sketchfab was founded in 2012, its community of 1.5 million users have published close to 3 million 3D models to the platform. In that time, Sketchfab has helped creators share their 3D models with the world, both through their platform and through more than 200 sharing integrations (including Blender, Adobe, Facebook, Twitter, Reddit and many others). The launch of the store is a natural next step for the company, allowing 3D content creators to seamlessly integrate 3D models uploaded by the Sketchfab community into their virtual worlds without attribution.
    Already trusted by brands such as Oath, Sony, HTC, Amazon and others, the Sketchfab Store is becoming the go-to destination for buyers with significant industry asset purchase needs. Sketchfab also recently announced content partnerships with Facebook at f8, integrating their AR studio platform, and with Apple at WWDC, as one of the launching partners of their new 3D format. The launch also follows a six month open beta program with early adopter buyers and sellers, during which the team gathered feedback and continuously added new features to develop the best store experience possible.
    “We’re extremely excited to launch the Sketchfab store after a successful open beta,” shared Alban Denoyel, Co-founder and CEO of Sketchfab. “The store allows our extraordinarily talented community to easily monetize their work on a single platform, while the model inspector takes the guesswork out of 3D model purchases. We cannot thank our early adopter buyers and sellers enough for sharing their thoughtful feedback and making the official store as strong as possible!”
    “Sketchfab’s store is a great place to buy assets because customers can inspect models from all angles instead of browsing through cherry-picked presentation images,” says Matthias Andre, Co-founder and Art Director of Bitgem, a team that creates 3D models and textures for game developers, “For sellers, it’s hassle-free as there is no need to create extensive presentation material. It’s easy to create great looking 3D previews and even showcase animations.”
    GameDev.net supports embedding Sketchfab models - just paste the URL to a model in your post to display it!
     

    khawk
    Epic Games has announced the recipients of its latest round of Unreal Dev Grants, with 37 teams and creators receiving a total of $1 million in no-strings-attached funding for games, tools, broadcast and beyond. The Unreal Dev Grants program was established in February 2015 as a $5 million fund for promising developers working with Unreal Engine 4; awards range from $5,000 to $50,000 with no restrictions or obligations to Epic Games. This latest round of Unreal Dev Grants underscores the variety of applications for Unreal Engine, with software plugins, VR games, AI-driven educational platforms, and healthcare tools all receiving financial assistance.
    “The Unreal Dev Grants program was designed to give studios and other developers a boost to bring their promising working prototypes to market, and to give back to the wider Unreal developer community as they use the engine in interesting ways,” said Chance Ivey, Partnership Manager at Epic Games. “This new round is our biggest yet, and we are blown away by the potential of projects like Kara Education, an AI-driven online educational platform for kids with hearing difficulties; VStore, a VR tool for quick and portable early dementia screenings; and Anima, a robust crowd simulation plugin for Unreal that can be leveraged by any game designer or VFX artist working with Unreal. Congratulations to all of these recipients on their exciting work; we can’t wait to see what’s next!”
    The new round of grant recipients includes:
    Amid Evil by New Bloods Interactive
    In this 90s-inspired FPS adventure, players take on evil hordes with sacred magical weaponry and spells. Travel through seven distinct episodes to hone your skills against evil and reclaim your world.
     
    Anima Plugin for UE4 by AXYZ Design
    Website
    anima© 3.0 by AXYZ Design is a robust crowd simulation plugin for Unreal Engine that helps architects, designers and visualization professionals to populate hundreds of 3D characters and bring them into Unreal Engine 4 scenes with just a few mouse clicks.
     
    Atomic Heart by Mundfish
    Website
    Atomic Heart is a first-person shooter that takes players inside an alternate universe during the high noon of the Soviet Union. Follow a Soviet special agent to unlock thrilling secrets and show the Motherland what you’re made of.
     
    Brief Battles by Juicy Cupcake
    Website
    A hilarious platform fighter, Brief Battles uses underpants as a weapon. Players can choose from a variety of super-powered underpants and different game modes as they compete to see who has the mightiest buns.
     
    Project "Caillou" (Working title) by Awaceb
    Video - Website
    Awaceb is a small indie team of two childhood friends from New Caledonia in the French territory of the Pacific. Project “Caillou” tells touching, poetic stories in an open, physics-based and dynamic 3D world.
     
    Desolate Sands by Blacksmith Studios
    Website
    Desolate Sands is a VR puzzle game set in an ancient pyramid. The objective is to reach the bottom by leveraging nearby movable objects and levers to solve a series of complex puzzles.
     
    ELLI by Bandana Kid
    Website
    In this puzzle platforming game, players travel as ancient time guardian Elli on a journey to recover the stolen sands of time.
     
    Feri Vincze
    Website
    Feri Vincze is a freelance 3D artist and videographer using Unreal Engine 4 to render elegant animated films such as “The Chest.”
     
    Ghost by Sky Machine Studios
    Website
    Ghost is a sandbox stealth game set in a Victorian era world, where players seek to uncover the truth about Arthur Artorias’ past. In this game, light is the enemy – stay in the shadows and explore the darkness to survive.
     
    Guntastic by Ludicrous Games
    Website
    Guntastic is an arcade-inspired game involving shooting and mayhem. Battle with up to four local or online players in fast-paced, one-shot one-kill, nonstop matches over continuously changing levels.

    Headsnatchers by Iguanabee
    Headsnatchers is a multiplayer party game where players each try to keep their heads on their shoulders while trying to remove everyone else’s. Play across four different game modes in over 25 unique environments, each with different rules and attributes.
     
    Hear No Evil by Rockodile Games
    Website
    Hear No Evil tells the story of humanity’s last remnants, who return to earth to fight for their future. This game is a visually spectacular top-down action shooter inspired by Alienation and Helldivers.
     
    Hellbound by Saibot Studios
    Website
    Hellbound is a demonic first-person shooter game inspired by classic 90s games like DOOM and Quake created by an independent team of developers in Argentina.
     
    Kara Education by Kara Technologies
    Video - Website
    Kara is an online education platform for children with hearing difficulties. The platform delivers educational material using an avatar, driven by Kara's AI and machine learning algorithms and Unreal Engine.
     
    Kine by Gwen Frey
    Kine is a 3D puzzle game about three whimsical machines that aspire to be musicians. Players embark across a theatrically rendered cityscape and solve increasingly difficult 3D puzzles to help the machines form a band and catch their big break.
     
    Little Devil Inside by Neostream
    Website
    Little Devil Inside is an engaging 3D action adventure RPG game where players are thrown into a surreal environment with elements that challenge their survival instincts. Explore, adapt, and fight to survive.
     
    M.A.S.S Builder by Vermillion Digital Co., Ltd.
    Facebook
    M.A.S.S. Builder pits humans against invading aliens in the fight for the Earth. Players will build, customize and control the ultimate M.A.S.S. (Mechanical Assault Skeleton Suit) in an effort to save the world.
     
    Midnight Ghost Hunt by Mellowsoft
    Website
    Midnight Ghost Hunt is a multiplayer hide-and-seek game that pits a team of Ghosts against a team of Ghost Hunters. The hunt begins at the stroke of midnight, and it’s a race against the clock to either stay hidden or uncover the ghosts.
     
    NanoSpace by Synthetic Systems
    Nanospace is a 3D platformer with elements of real-time strategy. Players take control of three "nano-mites" in levels full of riddles, monsters, inventory and more.
    https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=873225523
     
    Neon Giant - Unannounced Title
    Website
    Neon Giant is a group of game veterans with a experience in some of the world’s biggest action game franchises. The studio is hard at work on its first title, set in a brand new cyberpunk world.
     
    New Reality Co. - Unannounced Project
    Website
    New Reality Co is a creative studio by Milica Zec and Winslow Porter, dedicated to synthesizing storytelling, art, and technology into groundbreaking and emotional projects. New Reality are the creators behind the award-winning Giant and Tree VR experiences, both of which are built with Unreal and previously benefitted from Unreal Dev Grants.
     
    NotMyCar by NMC Studios
    Website
    NotMyCar is a white-knuckle, lead-footed massive multiplayer vehicular combat battle royale game. Drop into the battleground and use cool weapons and abilities to fight your way through single-elimination combat and become the ultimate survivor. Customize your ride to make it a beast of a vehicle to take on anyone, anytime.
     
    Oceanhorn 2 by Cornfox and Bros.
    Website
    Oceanhorn 2, which was showcased in the Unreal Engine booth at GDC 2018, is the upcoming sequel to the action-adventure mobile game featuring exploration in a colorful world with items, puzzles and battles.
     
    Origin Zero by Black Amber Digital
    Website
    Origin Zero is an episode-based, sci-fi animation project lovingly crafted by a small, dedicated team using Unreal Engine 4.
     
    Paradise Lost by PolyAmorous
    Website
    Paradise Lost is a non-linear narrative driven adventure game with meaningful, kinesthetic interactions dynamically changing both the environment and the story you are experiencing.
     
    The Path of Calydra by Finalboss
    Website
    The Path of Calydra is an 3D adventure platformer set in the fantastic world of Calygore. Explore as suburban teenager Matheus, who has been transported to Calygore and must rely on an unusual entity named Calydra to seek out four powerful crystals and return home.
     
    Point Cloud Plugin by Phoboz
    Forum Post
    The Point Cloud Plugin by Phoboz is a free plugin for Unreal Engine 4, developed to help with importing, processing and rendering of point clouds. It is currently in beta for Windows.
     
    Raji: An Ancient Epic by Nodding Head Games
    Website
    Raji: An Ancient Epic is an action adventure game set in ancient India. Raji is a young girl chosen by the gods to stand against the demonic invasion of the human realm, saving her younger brother in the process.
     
    Rocket Jockey by Burn Ward Games
    Website
    Rocket Jockey is a team-based game that plays like a cross between Rocket League and Super Smash Bros. Fly on top of modern jet engines with classic car chassis at break-neck speeds.
     
    Scene Fusion by KinematicSoup Technologies
    Website
    Scene Fusion for Unreal Engine makes real-time editor collaboration possible. Developers can build all sorts of content together in real time, resulting in significant time savings.
     
    Second Order
    Independent developer Second Order, creator of Claybook, is being recognized and awarded for contributing numerous fantastic rendering features and optimizations to Unreal Engine 4. This is the team’s second Unreal Dev Grant.
     
    Session by Crea-ture Studios
    Website
    Inspired by the golden era skate culture of the late 90s and early 2000s, Session is an upcoming skateboarding game that is all about authenticity, creativity and the freedom of expression that skateboarding provides.
     
    SMALLAND by EMBU Games
    Website
    With SMALLAND, the survival genre gets a tinier take that lets you appreciate the little things, or flee in terror of the little things. The slightest breeze can sweep your items or even your house away from you. The simplest rainfall can form puddles the size of lakes in a matter of minutes.
     
    Solar Warden by Polar Zenith
    Website
    Solar Warden is a six-degrees-of-freedom space shooter combined with an overarching campaign with real time strategy elements. Jump into your fighter and combat the silicoid menace up close, while you command and dispatch the Solar Warden fleet for reinforcements.
     
    Someday You'll Return by CBE Software
    Website
    Someday You'll Return is a story-driven psychological horror game about a desperate search for a missing daughter deep in the woods where you swore you'd never return.
     
    Twenty Studios
    Website
    Sweden's Twenty Studios, together with SuperFly.tv and LeViteZer, is crafting intuitive open source software that brings the power of Unreal Engine 4 to live mixed reality production and video compositing pipelines.
     
    VStore by VitaeVR
    Vstore, which recently entered wide clinical trials, is a fully functioning virtual reality supermarket which offers a fast, accurate and portable method of screening for early indicators of dementia. Diagnosing dementia at the earliest possible stages is critical because that is when treatment is at its most effective.
     
    To learn more about Unreal Dev Grants and to apply for a future award, visit: http://unrealengine.com/unrealdevgrants.

    komires
    We are pleased to announce the release of Matali Physics 4.2. The latest version introduces support for heightmaps with holes and with non-rectangular shaped terrain. New functionality allow you to create real-time deformable, large-scale heightmaps containing bridges, caverns and tunnels.
    What is Matali Physics?
    Matali Physics is an advanced, multi-platform, high-performance 3d physics engine intended for games, virtual reality and physics-based simulations. Matali Physics and add-ons form physics environment which provides complex physical simulation and physics-based modeling of objects both real and imagined.
    Main benefits of using Matali Physics:
    Stable, high-performance solution supplied together with the rich set of add-ons for all major mobile and desktop platforms (both 32 and 64 bit) Advanced samples ready to use in your own games New features on request Dedicated technical support Regular updates and fixes  
     
    You can find out more information on www.mataliphysics.com.

    khawk
    The IGDA Game Leadership Summit has announced the  speakers and show schedule for this year's event, which takes place at the Austin Convention Center on September 13-14, 2018. The Summit is focused on helping individual leaders at all levels within the industry maximize business performance and professional success as they navigate the rapidly changing interactive entertainment field. Super Early registration before July 13 is $125 for IGDA members and $200 for non-members.
    The Summit includes two tracks:  Management Excellence and Professional Leadership.
    Management Excellence
    Managers, executives, business owners and entrepreneurs will learn competencies essential to running smart, effective game businesses, at scales from small team to thousand-plus person studio. From planning ahead for success to navigating risk and positioning for growth, topics include:
    Keeping It Real: Creating, Sharing, and Executing a Company Vision The Turnaround: Leading teams from Crisis to Victory No Office, No Pants: Running a Virtual Studio Considerations Before Starting a Game Studio One (Story) Game at a Time: Tales from the First 5 Years of an Indie Game Studio Ways to Grow and Sustain a Successful Game Studio From Good to Great: How to Build and Sustain High Performing Teams Your Lawyer as Paladin What Your Publisher Wishes You Knew About Management Professional Leadership
    Game professionals at all stages of their careers and across all disciplines who seek to better manage their careers and acquire leadership skills will learn to improve their decision making, planning and problem solving. Topics include:
    The Terrible Transition! Or “I’ve Been Promoted – What Do I Do Now?” 30 Concrete Changes To make your Team more Sustainable The Soft Skills Needed to Succeed in Game Development Advocating for Yourself When Your Manager Doesn’t, Can’t or Won’t Radical Candor: Being an Asshole is Already 2nd Best SURPRISE! Your Feedback Sucks Leading From the Front Building a Culture of Opportunity Check out the speakers and learn more at http://gameleadership.com.
     
     

    CGTrader
    CGTrader’s team is ready to go watch some great footy this coming week! We know how frustrating it is to have a deadline looming right as the World Cup is ramping up, so we’re inviting every developer, design studio and maker to watch every game and grab over 250,000 3D models with up to 50% discounts in the week between June 21 and June 30.
    https://www.cgtrader.com/3d-models?sale_off=1
     
     

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