Dear Customers, Colleagues, Friends and ShiVa-istas, the ShiVa 1.X editor has grown and expanded years after years up to the point where it became hard to maintain and evolve. For months now if not years, a part of our team is working exclusively on the upcoming ShiVa 2.0 Editor. For ShiVa 2.0, we decided to rewrite everything from scratch! We had to in order to give you all the latest features you have been so eagerly demanding, like a more flexible user interface, full LUA 5.1 support, multicore-support in the editor, customizable shaders, and so much more.
Rewriting everything was not only a big challenge, it might have been a little crazy, too. But looking back, it turned out to be the right decision. Most of the hard work is now behind us. But indeed, that also means the 2.0 editor is not yet finished. We know we are late and we have failed to meet our own Spring 2012 deadline. But we are convinced that our paying customers expect the best product they can imagine, and we do not want to release something unfinished. We truly believe it will be worth the wait.
A New Star on the Horizon: ShiVa 2.0
We wanted to let you know we are actually, really, definitively and hard working on this release. And for the first time in years, we have decided to give you a peek at the new XML- and LUA-driven interface. So, without further ado, here are two screenshots of ShiVa 2.0 (64 bit) running natively on Mac OS X:
So, when can you get your hands on it? Unfortunately, we are not close to a release date yet. We know we are quite behind on our release schedule, but we simply do not have the same manpower than some other game IDE providers. Also, we give high priority to our paid support customers, which slows down our core development considerably. But do not fear, ShiVa 2.0 will eventually see the light – you know the old developer saying – when it’s done.
Expanding the Portfolio
ShiVa is and has ever been the most cross-platform game engine in the world. This is something we have always believed in, and we have designed ShiVa 2.0 with that in mind. We are constantly working on new engine ports. In the near future, you can look forward to
- Direct X 11, Windows 8 Metro and
- Sony PS Vita Engines.
ShiVa-powered games that are created today will run on Windows 8 flawlessly. But as soon as you consider putting a game on the Windows Store, this is a completely different story. Pushing the engine to DX11 means brain surgery, a major part of the engine needs to be updated. Among other things, we needed to implement a full Direct X 11 rendering backend and find a viable strategy for dynamically generated shaders, two rather slow and everything but straightforward tasks, believe us!
The ShiVa engine will be available for the Sony PS Vita next year. Amazingly enough, more than 5 ShiVa-powered games are already planned on that platform, and many more are expected!
Keeping you up to date: ShiVa 1.9.2 and UAT 1.4
We decided to release a new ShiVa 1.9.x version, along with the ShiVa Authoring Tool 1.4, to bridge the gap until ShiVa 2.0 hits the market. This free update will bring some ShiVa 2.0 engine features, including:
- new post rendering filters, such as SSAO or 3D LUT based Color Grading
- new particles options such as Attractors, Texture Sheets or Velocity Scale
- new scripting functions such as vertex colors control and runtime lights baking, and
- new supported texture pixel formats, such as RGBA4444 or RGB565.
Here are some screenshots of the upcoming SSAO post rendering filter:
While this release does not focus on the user interface and tools, it will nevertheless include:
- import improvements and additional options
- integrated SVN improvements
- skinned meshes optimization tools and
- various workflow improvements.
The UAT 1.4 will also bring the Windows Phone 7 engine, including a specific audio format export process, so users will finally be able to export for that platform using all supported features.
Some pictures of the upcoming 3D LUT-based Color Grading post rendering filter: