Cassini at Saturn Interactive Explorer
San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) February 20, 2008
Game Developers Conference - Feb. 18, 2008 - Unity Technologies, a 3D game development tool provider for creating console-quality web games, today showcased Tennis Stars Cup from ThreeMelons and Off-Road Velociraptor Safari by Flashbang Studios. Unity also featured a first-of-its-kind game odyssey launched this month by the world's leading space and science visionary, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL). These signature projects are among a growing roster of premiere game developers and visualization professionals who are embracing Unity as the new, definitive tool in content creation for today's increasingly sophisticated 3D web environment.
Today, Unity also makes its formal debut at the Game Developers Conference, showcasing Unity 2.0. Leveraging the Unity team's extensive experience in game development, Unity delivers a no-friction workflow for easier game development, high-performance 3D rendering, physics and streaming for fast loading immersive worlds, as well as a combination of innovative technologies for creating visually superior content.
"Unity is the only game engine on the market today that addresses the unique needs of the developer and publisher alike. For the game developer, Unity's team collaboration tools obliterate workflow issues - resulting in significant time-to-market wins," said David Helgason, CEO and co-founder of Unity Technologies. "For the publisher, Unity delivers a seamless download where the gamer remains on the content page. For the gamer, there's no payload, no registration required - just delivery of console-quality web games that play on virtually any system, new or old."
As a result, Unity is winning high-profile gaming converts including ThreeMelons and Flashbang Studios. Other key Unity customers include Trigger and Smashing Ideas who are working with media behemoths to create best of breed, 3D web games using Unity. Details of these projects will be unveiled in Q2 2008.
ThreeMelons & Flashbang Studios Release Console-Quality Online Games
This January two new Unity-built games debuted - ThreeMelons released Tennis Stars Cup at http://www.shockwave.com/gamelanding/tennisstarscup.jsp and Flashbang Studios released Off-Road Velociraptor Safari (Raptor Safari) at http://raptorsafari.com/.
ThreeMelons is an advergaming company that uses videogames to generate customers and bolster brand. Last October, ThreeMelons first submitted a tennis game demo to Unity's Top DOG (Developer of Online Games) Contest, which ultimately won the attention of Shockwave.com - one of the most popular online gaming sites.
"We wanted to create high-quality games on the web and Unity is the only realistic option. It's incredibly easy to learn, and very powerful. I've worked with several 3D engines in the past, and there's truly no comparison," said Joaquin Estragó, the lead developer at ThreeMelons. "The prototyping is direct and with an extremely quick turn-around. In Tennis Stars Cup, we had a working prototype within a week of starting."
Both ThreeMelons and Flashbang required a 3D game development tool with a highly efficient workflow that delivered console-like graphics and great game play. However, Flashbang also had a seemingly impossible deadline.
"Unity had everything that we needed to make a great game. Our only hesitation was if we could learn the 'ins and outs' of this new tool without a significant time investment. Within a few days, we knew we would make our first deadline and that Unity would become a mainstay of Flashbang productions," said Matthew Wegner, CEO of Flashbang Studios. "Unity provided the smoothest experience we've had in five years of game development and ultimately, it enabled us to deliver Raptor Safari in only eight short weeks."
ThreeMelons and Flashbang are currently working on new projects - again both of which will be developed using Unity.
NASA/JPL Debut First-of-its-kind Game Odyssey
In addition to conventional game developers, the Unity engine is being used by visualization experts to develop the first-of-its-kind video game odyssey for NASA JPL. The project, "Cassini at Saturn Interactive Explorer" (CASSIE), showcases a 10-year mission to Saturn, which began in 1997 with the launch of the Cassini-Huygens satellite.
JPL engineers took real mission data from the spacecraft - boiled down multiple gigabyte files into a few megabytes -- and developed a game-like environment using Unity. The result was CASSIE - a game-like odyssey that appeals to a general populace and is accessible to museums and science centers regardless of hardware.
The CASSIE expedition tracks the satellite over a three-and-a-half year period as it moves along its course and performs maneuvers as planned by mission scientists and navigators. In addition, the user can take control of the "camera" viewing the satellite to change its view and focus on the details of Saturn or its encounters with seven of the planet's mysterious moons.
Due to the success of CASSIE, NASA JPL is developing a second version and yet another game-like odyssey using Unity, which will explore a mission to Jupiter's largest moon, Europa. The "Europa Explorer" project is expected to debut in March 2008. To explore Saturn and its many moons via CASSIE, visit: http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/multimedia/CASSIE/.
About Unity Technologies
Unity Technologies is a 3D game development tool provider, enabling the creation of totally dynamic online content that rivals the newest games on the console market. Based in Copenhagen with offices in San Francisco, CA, Unity provides tools to game developers and creative visualization professionals alike to deliver the best 3D web content. The Unity engine is currently being used by leading game developers, educational institutions and industry visionaries including: Smashing Ideas, Trigger, Freeverse, Shockwave.com, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Flashbang Studios, ThreeMelons and Skyworks Technologies. For more information, visit http://www.unity3d.com.
Unity will be showcasing its technology at the Game Developers Conference, Moscone Center in San Francisco, Feb. 18-22 at booth # 5650. The Unity booth is located in the North Hall, nearest the concession stand.