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Unreal Engine 3 licensed by Square Enix for future titles

Square Enix has signed a deal with Epic Games allowing the Japanese company to develop multiple titles on Epic's Unreal Engine 3. Square's yet to go into details about which titles will use the engine, and whether it'll be employing it for newer ventures or existing properties. Epic Games Japan's Taka Kawasaki said the company was excited to see what Square Enix did with its tech, saying the deal “reflects the Japanese development community’s trust in our technical prowess.”

Square Enix is known for building its games mainly on proprietary code, with Final Fantasy XIII and XIV both running on variants of the company's Crystal Tools engine. That technology, intended to ease the strain of developing for multiple current-gen platforms, ended up adding to FFXIII's development time, and had to be customized for both FFXIII and FFXIV. It's easy to see, then, why Square Enix might want to move to a more ubiquitous technology.

Above: 2009's The Last Remnant, Square Enix's previous foray into Unreal Engine 3

“It is a pleasure to provide Square Enix with an exceptional game engine that will help them bring thrilling new experiences to legions of fans all over the world,” said Kawasaki today.

Calling the first Square Enix title developed with Unreal Engine 3 “a cornerstone for our worldwide strategy,” company president Yoichi Wada stated that “in a world of new technology, we need to expand our portfolio” with new, globally-appealing franchises. That was in 2009, when the company first tried out Unreal Engine 3 development on fresh IP The Last Remnant. The results were mixed, with our 5/10 score fairly typical of the game's reception.

But then, 2009 was literally years ago, and Last Remnant's flaws were hardly the fault of Epic's tech, so here's looking forward to more news on the pairing. “Final Fantasy on Mass Effect technology” has a nice ring to it, after all.

6 comments

  • R-ape - November 18, 2011 11:55 a.m.

    Which reminds me, when's there going to be another Unreal Tourney game?
  • RedOutlive10 - November 18, 2011 4:47 p.m.

    I don't see it happening. Fast paced shooters like UT/Quake don't play well on console because of the higher twitch skill required, so they're a dying breed. It's quite sad because the genre needs more diversity.
  • FoxdenRacing - November 18, 2011 8:16 a.m.

    Does this mean the next Final Fantasy will be lovingly rendered in 4 shades of brown, feature regenerating health and chest-high sticky walls everywhere, and suffer from horrible texture pop-in at every turn? I kid, I kid. Mostly. The unreal engine is an incredible piece of technology, as versatile as it is powerful...but only when treated with dedication and care. For the love of all that is holy, I wish they'd do something about the texture pop. For the first 30 seconds or so after loading, it looks like an N64 threw up on the screen. See: Borderlands, Bulletstorm, et al. With any luck they'll fix it for the upcoming UE4, but if not hopefully journalists will start calling Epic on it directly, rather than dinging the game's score and calling it a day.
  • SirNinja - November 17, 2011 6:36 p.m.

    Oh please let this be a sign of a Last Remnant sequel. The 360 version was pretty bad, yeah, but the PC version was a dramatic improvement. They used the extra few months to tweak everything (and add a whole bunch of new stuff), and the result was a genuinely good RPG. One of this generation's most underrated titles, IMO.
  • pin316 - November 18, 2011 12:01 a.m.

    i couldn't agree with you more...a very underrated game. I raelly enjoyed it on the 360, regardless of all the little problems it had. For me the depth in story, the original combat system (the whole union concept was briliant - especially when you got to the stage of using things like blackout), and the vast array of sidequests made it feel like the JRPG I had been waiting for from SE. the only issues I had were the occasioal poor tech implementation, and the annoyance of not being able to properly manage the inventory of anyone other than the main character, thereby stifling the development of their skill-trees somewhat. i heard they had fixed them with the PC version, and hoped for ages that they would patch the fixes to the 360 version but it never came :(
  • Cropsirc - November 17, 2011 5:53 p.m.

    “Final Fantasy on Mass Effect technology” Beautiful pictures pop into my head

Showing 1-6 of 6 comments

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