Square-Enix: Luminous engine may be too big for Blu-ray; uses CGI assets in real time
The next Xbox console will feature a Blu-ray disc drive, according to Microsoft-copyrighted design materials leaked earlier in the month. You might want to wheel on something heftier, Microsoft. Square Enix's cutting-to-the-point-of-lethal edge Luminous Engine cranks assets that are so large, one Blu-ray disc may not be enough.
If you missed the Luminous tech demo, give it a whirl below - I have reservations about what the look and feel implies for games using the engine, but it's a bit of a stunner nonetheless.
"For the backgrounds used in this - the mountains, the houses - we are using exactly the same assets as are used in the Visual Works CG version," Square Enix's chief technical officer Yoshihisa Hashimoto told RPGsite. CGI assets in-game? Cross that one off our list of childhood daydreams.
"Of course, it's too massive of a data to use in a game as-is, but I think the look and feel will probably remain," he went on. "If we had time, we could've compressed the data even smaller. We didn't have time to do that, so we just used the same master data - but it can definitely be reduced."
Asked by the site whether fitting everything into currently used disc formats was a struggle, Hashimoto confessed: "Yeah, that could be a challenge. There's a possibility that just one Blu-ray may not be sufficient."
Luminous Engine will serve up those whopping assets at an appropriately greasy rate. "Of course enabling 60 frames per second - that is somewhere we'd like to aim, definitely. The sort of high speed processing required for that is definitely inevitable eventually. To make games at this quality level it's also the minimum.
It's not just a question of texture detail and frame rate, however. "Another thing is that the AI, animations, physics - all that - in all levels, encapsulating that - we want to continue to raise the bar so that the quality will be even better. I think this vision can be achieved on any hardware, any platforms - just to varying degrees - so that's where we're aiming."
Nonetheless, Square Enix won't be using Luminous for everything. "It's not going to be that this engine is going to be in every single game by Square Enix; it will be a team decision. It's going to be one of the options that the teams can decide depending on the game they want to create. Right now, I can't really talk about what might be using this engine."
Full Interview by APZonerunner: