Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Far Cry 2: New 'Dunia' Engine Technical details unveiled

Some interesting new info about Ubisoft's in-house Far Cry 2 Engine, dubbed the 'Dunia' engine, has appeared over at German hardware site PC Games Hardware Extreme. In an interview with Ubisoft's Technical Director Dominic Guay, various technical details are uncovered about the technology behind this exciting African-set upcoming entry in the Far Cry franchise.

Details discussed include the engine's impressive fire, wind and weather effects, DirectX 10 optimizations, as well as the ability for the engine to stream in large amounts of detailed terrain on the fly, meaning no pesky loading times for gamers with itchy trigger fingers. With an enormous playable area some 50 sq km in size, this has clearly been a significant technical and artistic challenge for the team.

DG: Well, Dunia was built from the ground up. It was developed during the last 3 years in our R&D effort for Far Cry 2. We had a few major goals in mind as we built the technology. First, we wanted to get rid of the concept of “levels”. “Levels” have been used since before the Pac Man days to manage progression and content and are, from a technical standpoint, a very safe way of managing things. However, FC2 is a truly open world game and we couldn’t do with such a limitation anymore. A change of scale like that one changes a lot of thing in a technology.

AI is also covered, with the team promising AI entities that live independently of the player's actions.

They have basic needs that they need to satisfy and they go about their business satisfying those needs. Obviously, those needs change according to the time of day or weather: for example most people like to sleep at night.

Head on over to the post at PCGH for the rest of the interview.

For some footage of the engine in action, check out the embedded trailer below.