Quick Look at the Hero Engine 2
So here we see The Repopulation on the Hero Engine 2. The big deal about the Hero Engine 2 is a large update to the graphics engine.
The Repopulation looked good under Hero Engine 1 as far as I was concerned. The pre-alpha videos displayed graphics that were similar to those found in Fallen Earth, a game I played and enjoyed for some long time.
Other additions to the Hero Engine with Hero Engine 2 include a new middleware called Awesomium® which is a web UI browser framework.
From a player perspective it’s an interesting addition since it allows players to see web hosted content in game. Developers could post in game news, or post upcoming in game events to a web host such as the game website. Then the content would be visible to players both in and out of the game (without using the alt+tab option). I’m not 100% sure about how it’s implemented, but it still sounds like a fun addition. I know I wanted to use something like this when working with the OpenSim project for web driven story lines.
From a developer perspective though Hero Engine states that the integration assists with micro transactions and subscriptions. Hey, games have to make money or they don’t stay live.
Another middleware addition is SpeedTree® for Games 6. This middlware addition makes it quicker and easier for developers to add animated trees and foliage to a game. From a player standpoint, it’s not a huge deal, though it is nice seeing wavy grass in game. From a Developer standpoint though, something like SpeedTree® would cut down the back end work of adding custom animations to trees and foliage. Kind of a bonus in my book.
Despite some random MMO forum rumblings, it looks like the Hero Engine 2 is solid. It offers some very interesting features for building games, monetizing games, and giving games the ‘polished’ look that MMO gamers demand. It will be interesting to see what happens with games created on the Hero Engine platform.
Personally, I’m just looking forward to playing The Repopulation.
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