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Amazon Launches Lumberyard Game Engine, Featuring Integration with AWS and Twitch

by Sergio De Simone on Feb 13, 2016 |

Lumberyard is a free (as in “free-beer”) game engine and SDK that is suitable to create triple-A games, Amazon say, for Windows, Xbox One, and PS4, while support for Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android is coming.

Lumberyard is based on CryEngine, which Amazon licensed in 2015, but it has already diverged by including a new asset pipeline processor and a new networking layer; furthermore, the gap will increase substantially over time, declared Lumberyard general manager Eric Schenk.

According to The Verge, Lumberyard is “a very capable engine”. It includes tools for character creation and animation, its own networking layer integrated with online console services, and a free version of Audiokinetic’s sound engine.

The main differentiator point for Lumberyard is its touted integration with AWS and Twitch, a streaming video platform that is also controlled by Amazon. Twitch integration will allow to replicate the experience of “Twitch Plays”, a social experiment to play video games based on commands that players sent through a chat room. Additionally, Lumberyard-Twitch integration also provides “JoinIn”, which aims to allow viewers and broadcasters to join together in a streamed broadcast game. As to AWS, Lumberyard includes SDKs for all of its major cloud services, including S3, EC2, DynamobDB, Lambda functions, etc. Interestingly, as per Lumberyard service terms, AWS is the only cloud platform that is allowed, with competitors offerings such as Azure’s or Google’s being ruled out under the label of “alternative web services”.

Lumberyard is provided by Amazon as a free download, including its full source code, but its license explicitly forbids redistribution in any form. It runs on Windows 7 or higher and requires Microsoft Visual Studio 2013.

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