PlatinumGames recently announced plans to open a Tokyo-based studio in April. While PlatinumGames Tokyo will develop games, it’s also performing Research and Development for the company’s new in-house engine, tentatively known as PlatinumEngine. Since the studio’s founding in late 2007, in-house game engines have powered all of its titles. However, this currently in development engine aims to keep pace with technology’s continued evolution. A key goal is to ensure Platinum can produce “better visuals with less effort.”
A recent update to the Tokyo office’s website outlines plans for PlatinumEngine via interviews with the R&D Group. The following statement from Wataru Ohmori sets the stage for why Platinum is pursuing a new engine:
We came to the frightening realization that if we don’t make our work more efficient, we’re simply not going to be able to keep making the games that we want to make as technology and expectations grow. Our new engine will help us make bigger, more expressive games than ever before, and with greater ease.
In response to why the team won’t simply use an already established engine such as Unreal or Unity, Ohmori notes external engines lack some of the features Platinum projects require. What will make PlatinumEngine unique is that it won’t exclusively prioritize graphical fidelity akin to some other engines. According to Tsuyoshi Odera, this doesn’t mean graphical performance is being cast aside. However, “there are other elements that are every bit as crucial to making truly engaging, AAA titles, and we want to give them as much emphasis.”
Ohmori cites “ease of use” as another key priority with engine development. PlatinumEngine will allow the team to complete prototyping–trying new ideas for action gameplay–at a much faster pace. Such efficiency should further ensure artists and programmers have “even greater control” at their fingertips.
[Source: PlatinumGames Tokyo Website]