The Octane Engine
Octane is the name given to our in-house proprietary technology for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii-U, Wii and 3DS, PlayStation Vita, iOS and Android phones and tablets and Windows PCs.
Octane is a feature rich technology that encompasses a full development pipeline and tool chain as well as a highly developed game engine.
Whilst focused on driving games the engine is designed to support many genres and the tools are created in such a way to allow for rapid prototyping and game creation in the most efficient way possible.
Octane High Definition
In addition to the Windows PC platform Octane 5 supports all current high definition consoles: PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii-U. The Engine is designed to be platform agnostic and allows for rapid cross platform development with tool pipelines building data for all machines simultaneously. NASCAR Unleashed was developed using Octane 4 technology on PS3, Xbox 360, Wii and 3DS - we are now well into development on Octane 5 - so expect more details of upcoming high definition games soon!
Octane SmartPhones and Tablets
As well as the latest high definition consoles Octane 5 also supports iOS and Android platforms - including smartphones such as iPhone and tablet devices such as iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tab, and Amazon Kindle Fire. We'll be releasing more details on the first Octane powered games to be released on these devices soon!
Octane 3DS supports full stereoscopic 3D graphics featuring advanced shader and lighting techniques including normal mapping, reflections, stencil shadows, bloom, and motion blur all hand optimised for maximum performance. The engine also has full support for online gameplay including downloading and uploading UGC data, dynamically updating high score tables, game sharing, multi cart play; touch screen, gyroscope motion control, microphone and audio and video support (using middleware). Octane 3DS has been used on three Firebrand titles to date: Need for Speed The Run (pictured below), Cars 2, and NASCAR Unleashed.
Octane Wii has been designed to maximise the potential of the Wii hardware in the same way as the technology did on DS.
Engine features include HDR style rendering; projected shadows; full scene reflections and metallic surface simulation; depth of field and motion blur- all optimised for 60Hz performance. Firebrand Games have shipped four products built using Octane Wii - TrackMania, Need for Speed The Run, NASCAR Unleashed, and Hot Wheels Track Attack.
Octane DS supports full Wi-Fi including downloading and uploading data, high score tables, game sharing, multi cart play; touch screen, microphone and audio and video support (using middleware). Using this technology, we've released an incredible thirteen titles for Nintendo DS in just over five years!
Our 3D systems have advanced scene management tools that let environment artists maximise the levels of detail being seen at any time whilst remaining within the limitations of the hardware. Custom proprietary shader and lighting plug-ins have also been developed to allow artists to see an accurate representation of the final level from within Maya.
Game Designers create and populate maps using Maya tools, combined with Lua scripts. These tools have been designed to be used entirely without programmer support, including the ability for designers to add features to the properties of objects without code input.
This process empowers the Art and Design teams while maximising productivity across each discipline. We also ensure that every development team member has access to the lead platform they are working on - with a development kit on the desk of every developer and everyone equally responsible for building and maintaining code and data on platform.