Last July, the previously console-centric Midway Games shocked the industry by signing a deal to publish future installments of the top PC franchise Unreal. Today, Midway revealed it was further cementing its relationship with Unreal developer Epic Games by using the studio's Unreal Engine 3 as the basis for its next generation of games for PCs and consoles. No specific titles or next-gen platforms were mentioned in the deal announcement.
According to Midway, the Unreal Engine 3 is already being used by all its internal developers, including its Chicago shop (makers of NBA Ballers and Mortal Kombat), Austin studio (Area 51), and Surreal Software (The Suffering). Besides helping the publisher "create specific tools and assets that will be utilized across all Midway internal studios," the deal was also intended to "further Midway's strategy to align itself with the top development technology and talent in the industry," according to the company.
"Great next-generation games will be defined by how far they push the envelope in terms of graphical prowess, evolved artificial intelligence, and revolutionary online functionality beyond what gamers are currently experiencing," said Midway CEO and president David F. Zucker. "Our obtaining the use of Unreal Engine 3 empowers us to begin today to produce great next-generation content. Our internal studios are already in the process of creating incredible products with the Unreal Engine 3 technology in multiple genres."
Unsurprisingly, Epic executives were also pleased with the deal. "We are especially gratified that Midway, a major publisher committed to developing high-quality games for both next-generation console and PC platforms, in numerous styles and genres, came to us seeking the right to use Unreal Engine 3 as a basis technology for its enterprise," said Mark Rein, vice president of the developer.
Midway isn't the only company licensing the Unreal Engine 3. In September, Jade Empire developer BioWare announced it was also licensing Epic's next-gen tech. For a glimpse of what the Unreal Engine 3 can do, check out the demo below from E3 2004.