Irish firm to raise Havok in PC games industry

21 Feb 2008

The physics engine and animation software maker behind some of the world’s most popular games, Havok, is to make its Havok Complete software available free for download from May to PC games developers

The move by the Intel-owned company follows a similar plan by Microsoft, which is making its XNA Games Studio 2.0 technology available to download in order to allow individuals to make their own games.

Dublin-headquartered Havok, which began life as a Trinity College campus company, has entered into an agreement with its parent company Intel under which approved game developers on the PC platform can execute a commercial distribution license with Havok for free. Intel acquired Havok last year for US$100m.

“Intel is very pleased to be sponsoring this direction in the PC market,” said Renee James, general manager of Intel’s software and solution group.

“This aligns well with our ongoing strategy of putting the best software tools in the hands of PC games developers.”

The free downloadable Havok Complete will enable broad non-commercial development use for artists and engineers around the world, which Havok believes will boost creative games development throughout the industry.

“This is fantastic news for commercial PC games developers as well as the independent games development community, who will really benefit from this move,” said Mark DeLoura, creator of the Game Programming Gems series.

“It’s great to see a leading middleware company like Havok show such support for PC games developers by making its physics and animation system freely available.”

Havok Physics engine and Havok Animation are the most popular solutions in the cross-platform games development market and are used in over 200 games.

“Havok has an excellent revenue base generated by sales of our three products across multiple platforms and into multiple industries,” said David O’Meara, managing director at Havok.

“This enables us to make an industry-changing move and opens up a much broader market for products such as Havok Behaviour, and our new products Havok Cloth and Havok Destruction, that really come alive when adopted on top of our core platform, Havok Complete,” O’Meara said.

By John Kennedy