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Thursday, August 14, 2008

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Blizzard: Hardware Delayed SC II, New Partnership With AMD
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 9 comments

During a speech at AMD's Cinema 2.0 event, Blizzard's Bob Colayco revealed that limitations in computer hardware prevented the company from realizing its 3D plans for StarCraft II until recently. The event showcased AMD's new ATI Radion HD 4800 series graphics cards which promise to bring cinematic level 3D animations to actual gameplay.

Colayco noted that the original Starcraft was built on a 2D engine, in spite of the competition having largely switched over to 3D engines. The savings in processing were applied to larger, more epic battles with dozens of units being rendered on the screen at the same time. The crowded battlefield "captured the gamer's imagination more" than the barren fields of competing 3D games at the time, and helped cement Starcraft 's place in videogaming culture.

In spite of their success, the team at Blizzard wasn't going to rush into a 3D Starcraft unless it could capture the same feeling of the original. "The truth is that only recently have we had this kind of 3D power where we're able to create a real Starcraft experience in 3D. What we want to see are hundreds of vehicles and creatures clashing on the battlefield, with dynamic lighting and shadows and all of these dazzling special effects -- that's the kind of gaming experience that our players expect from us."
In related news Blizzard Entertainment and AMD have announced an agreement to allow AMD to bundle Blizzard games with ATI Radeon graphics products. The games themselves will be optimized to run on AMD hardware.
“Blizzard Entertainment is responsible for the hottest titles in PC gaming and AMD is excited to be working closely with one of the top development teams in the industry to deliver exceptional gaming experiences for players around the world,” said Rick Bergman, senior vice president and general manager, Graphics Products, AMD. “Gamers have a variety of choices when it comes to graphics cards, and those who choose ATI Radeon solutions can be confident their purchase will give them the visually rich, high-performance experience they expect.”

“Our collaboration with AMD is especially important to us because it provides us with early access to some of the latest graphics technology,” said Paul Sams, chief operating officer of Blizzard Entertainment. “Delivering a polished game experience is one of our top priorities, and this relationship helps us achieve that goal for Blizzard gamers who choose AMD graphics cards.”
For more information follow the links below.

Joystiq: Why StarCraft II Took So Long
AMD Cinema 2.0
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

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Archives  News  Blizzard: Hardware Delayed SC II, New Partnership With AMD