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Recently, Crytek had to shut down several of their studios due to financial problems. However, those issues haven't impacted the development of Star Citizen, which was reliant on the CryEngine for the development of their space sim.
According to Gamespot, Cloud Imperium Games have switched off of the CryEngine and to the Amazon Lumberyard Engine. Originally, they purchased a full license of the CryEngine from Crytek, buying out the engine for their own purposes, so even with Crytek's financial problems it wouldn't have impacted the development of Star Citizen.
What's more is that Cloud Imperium Games and Roberts Space Industries had gutted out the CryEngine after utilizing a lot of its rendering pipelines to create the CG-quality graphics that power the game. The major issue they had was with the network infrastructure (or lack thereof) provided by the CryEngine, which is designed for visually spectacular but much smaller projects. This required the team to build their own networking code to accommodate the MMO-like structure that they needed for Star Citizen. However, it wasn't enough.
In order to squeeze their massive, cinematic-quality space sim into the confines of the CryEngine, they've been slowly releasing modules for the game in the form of Arena Commander, the race mode, and the new Star Marine FPS component. These features are all baked into the core of Star Citizen, but many of their wider properties are operating separately from the core persistent universe. Roberts Space Industries to decided to help make things easier on Cloud Imperium Games by announcing that they would be switching to Amazon's new Lumberyard in order to ease the process of connecting these disparate modules together and eventually making the persistent universe one big, cohesive, MMO experience.
They needed Amazon's AWS cloud networking workflow to create a seamless massive multiplayer system for Star Citizen. This switch was seamless due to the fact that Lumberyard is actually based on the principal CryEngine technology, so they got to keep all of their rendering pipelines and get the added bonus of cloud server support and MMO scaling that they will need to bridge all of the components together into Star Citizen's persistent universe, with creative director and RSI CEO Chris Roberts explaining in the press statement...
Lumberyard provides ground breaking technology features for online games, including deep back-end cloud integration on AWS and its social component with Twitch that enables us to easily and instantly connect to millions of global gamers.
Because we share a common technical vision, it has been a very smooth and easy transition to Lumberyard. In fact, we are excited to announce that our upcoming 2.6 Alpha release for Star Citizen is running on Lumberyard and AWS.
That's right, the Lumberyard is already running on the current alpha build of 2.6 that backers have access to right now. The feedback has been extremely positive from those who have managed to get in time with Star Marine. Some people have been saying it's one of the best FPS experiences they've played this year due to the mix of physics-based combat, tactical team mechanics, the unique zero gravity segments and the overall hard-nosed atmosphere that CIG has brought to the sci-fi gaming genre.
While Crytek may be suffering from some unfortunate financial issues, RSI and CIG are still moving forward with Star Citizen and the new Lumberyard Engine from Amazon.