Nitrous engine demo shows off next-gen space battle

Thousands of space ships zipping around, swooping, swarming, blowing the heck out of each other--that's what I'd like to see in a 'next-generation' space game. Oxide Games is teasing this possibility with Star Swarm, a tech demo created to show off its game engine for PC, Xbox One and PS4, Nitrous. Stardock has invested in Oxide, and is already using Nitrous for three games.

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Thousands of space ships zipping around, swooping, swarming, blowing the heck out of each other--that's what I'd like to see in a 'next-generation' space game. Oxide Games is teasing this possibility with Star Swarm, a tech demo created to show off its game engine for PC, Xbox One and PS4, Nitrous. Stardock has invested in Oxide, and is already using Nitrous for three games.

The demo sees thousands of ships in battle, with AI picking targets and firing off scores of physics-simulated blasts. Each ship's turrets even tracks their target. It's made to take advantage of multiple CPU cores, and also supports AMD's Mantle technology to boost performance.

For now, the demo's only viewable in video and screenshot form, but Oxide plans to release a downloadable demo "soon" through Steam, so you can run it yourself.

The Star Swarm demo shows off "what [Nitrous] means for the future of strategy games," Oxide said in yesterday's announcement. It boasted, "Nitrous is capable of simulating and rendering large-scale, complex scenes never before seen in games, which opens doors to entirely new types of experiences that simply weren't possible before."

The only game confirmed to be using Nitrous so far is Civilization IV lead designer Soren Johnson's mysterious project codenamed 'Mars,' in development at his new Stardock-backed studio Mohawk Games. Stardock's Galactic Civilization III is using a different engine.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    January 16, 2014 6:00 AM

    Alice O'Connor posted a new article, Nitrous engine demo shows off next-gen space battle.

    Thousands of space ships zipping around, swooping, swarming, blowing the heck out of each other--that's what I'd like to see in a 'next-generation' space game. Oxide Games is teasing this possibility with Star Swarm, a tech demo created to show off its game engine for PC, Xbox One and PS4, Nitrous. Stardock has invested in Oxide, and is already using Nitrous for three games.

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      January 16, 2014 6:30 AM

      I think this demo is a long way off being Xbox one and ps4 compatible. I watched the full presentation of this. This demo was running on a powerful pc and needed mantle to achieve this. No doubt that the newest consoles are a lot more powerful than the last but I doubt this will be possible on them. The engine is compatible with them maybe but not this demo.

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      January 16, 2014 6:39 AM

      Oh I think I saw an earlier version of this engine posted on the Star Citizen forums too..

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      January 16, 2014 6:51 AM

      I love how space shooters are suddenly in again now everyone has gone O_o at Star Citizen. Long overdue, can't wait to play them.

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        January 16, 2014 7:14 AM

        Just goes to show how idiotic most publishers are (see: THQ)

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        January 16, 2014 7:31 AM

        Chris Roberts really did us all a huge favor. Not only do we have star citizen coming up, we've got all these bandwagon jumpers to play too.
        Fans of this underserved genre (like myself) are really happy.

        /now, if only we can get Disney to give us a proper Xwing followup.

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          January 16, 2014 8:47 AM

          I want my X-wing and Tie Fighter figurines in Disney Infinity.

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        January 16, 2014 10:08 AM

        Still need a TIE Fighter sequel though.

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      January 16, 2014 8:29 AM

      Cool, I can't wait to play games made with this at 6 frames per second! What a demo!

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        January 16, 2014 6:16 PM

        It's such an incredible shame that alphas never improve at all.

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      January 16, 2014 8:57 AM

      I'm so ready for Mantle to come out. My Core 2 Quad gets spanked by 64p Battlefield matches.

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