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Trio of engine deals signed ahead of GDC

Starbreeze inks Unreal deal; Infernal signs for 3DS; Vision set for NGP

A trio of game engine deals have been unveiled, with significant announcements for technology from Epic, Terminal Reality and Trinigy.

Firstly, Sweden-based Starbreeze Studios - the developer behind Riddick and The Darkness - has inked a long-term, "multi-year" deal to use the Epic's Unreal 3 engine, although details of projects to be created were not revealed.

"We evaluated several game engines in the market and came to the conclusion that Unreal Engine 3 is the solution that best fits our needs," said Johan Kristiansson, CEO of Starbreeze Studios. "We were particularly impressed by the tool chain, which facilitates rapid iteration and high productivity for our team."

"Starbreeze has proven to be a talented developer of games based on popular properties as well as those based on their own worlds," said Mark Rein, vice president of Epic Games. "With this team now armed with all Unreal Engine 3 has to offer, players will get their hands on the newest creative visions thanks to Starbreeze using our state-of-the-art game engine tools and technology."

Meanwhile Terminal Reality - behind Ghostbusters: The Game and Def Jam: Rapstar - has announced that the Infernal Game Engine has now been authorised for development on the forthcoming 3DS platform.

"We are excited to see what Infernal developers have in store for Nintendo 3DS," said Joe Kreiner, VP of sales and marketing at Terminal Reality. "Glasses-free 3D changes the game and we are eager to make our mark on the new portable software landscape.

"The Infernal Engine is one of the most versatile and efficient development solutions on the market and our consistent success is proving it. Look for announcements on specific Infernal-built Nintendo 3DS titles coming soon."

The Infernal Engine adds the 3DS to its list of other platforms, which includes the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2 and PC.

And finally Trinigy has revealed that its Vision Game Engine - earlier this week announced for mobile platforms - will be supporting Sony's newly-announced handheld, the Next Generation Portable, in future updates of the technology.

The latest version of the engine will be unveiled at GDC in two weeks, and has been optimised with "graphically rich, high-performance" games for the NGP in mind.

"SCE is known for producing powerful computer entertainment systems and handheld entertainment systems capable of delivering rich gaming experiences and eye-popping graphics," said Dag Frommhold, MD at Trinigy. "With support for NGP, the Vision Game Engine gives developers a flexible, full-featured solution for speeding the creation of graphically superior, high-performance casual and hard-core games for portable entertainment systems."

The engine includes a number of features designed to speed up NGP development, including an optimised character skinning system, a multi-threading system, efficient rendering and fully featured graphics technology.