If you’re a game developer looking for tools that will help you compete without breaking the bank in the process, you’ll want to check out Project Anarchy, a free mobile game development suite available for developers from Havok, which you might recognize as the physics engine used by most of the big name console and PC game platforms out there.
What is Havok?
Havok – an Intel-owned company – is one of the big names on the game development landscape:
“As a leading provider of games development technologies, Havok has over 13 years of experience servicing the most demanding technology requirements for leading customers in the commercial games and entertainment industry. A combination of superior technology and dedication to delivering industry leading support to its customers has led to the company’s technologies being used in over 500 of the best known and award-winning titles including Halo 4, Assassin’s Creed® III, The Elder Scrolls® V: Skyrim™, Guild Wars 2, Call of Duty®: Black Ops II, Skylanders Giants™ and Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour.” – Havok Releases Project Anarchy, Completely Free
Here are just a few of the projects that Havok has been included in:
“Havok works in partnership with the world’s best known publishers, developer studios and developer teams, including Microsoft Games Studios®, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Nintendo®, Ubisoft®, NC Soft, Rockstar, EA, Bethesda ™, Insomniac, Relic, Bungie, Naughty Dog, Evolution Studios and Guerrilla Games. Its cross-platform, professionally supported technology is available for Xbox One®, the all-in-one games and entertainment system from Microsoft, the Xbox 360® games and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment systems, Windows® 7, Windows® 8, PlayStation Vita®, Wii™, Wii U, Android™, iOS, Windows® RT, Windows® Phone 8, Apple Mac OS and Linux. Havok’s products have also been used to drive special effects in movies such as Harry Potter, Clash of the Titans, Watchmen, James Bond, and The Matrix. Havok has offices in Dublin (Ireland), San Francisco, Seoul, Tokyo, Shanghai, and Germany.”
What is Project Anarchy?
We already know it’s free, but here are some more technical specs:
“Project Anarchy is a free mobile game engine for iOS, Android (including X-86), and Tizen. It includes Havok’s Vision Engine along with Havok Physics, Havok Animation Studio and Havok AI. It has an extensible C++ architecture, optimized mobile rendering, a flexible asset management system, and Lua scripting and debugging. There are also complete game samples included with the SDK along with extensive courseware on the Project Anarchy site that game developers can use to quickly get up to speed with the engine and bring their game ideas to life.” – Introducing Project Anarchy, a Free Mobile Game Engine by Havok
You can watch a demo of the engine in action below:
Basically, Project Anarchy is a fully functional collaboration of Havok’s software. This release of Project Anarchy includes Havok’s Vision Engine, along with access to the Havok suite of tools for Physics, Animation, and AI. Developers can look forward to customizable game samples, advanced debugging, a flexible asset management system, and extensible C++ architecture.
Havok has also made available an online hub of game development content – including forums, Q and A, courseware, and video tutorials. One of the best ways to see what Project Anarchy really has to offer is this fantastic walkthrough from GameFromScratch.com, which includes screenshots, resources, and an honest review of the engine/tools from a seasoned game developer:
“There’s tons of functionality packed in this engine, and this is just looking at the tool side of the equation. Of course there are dozens upon dozens of APIs behind the scenes as well. In the future I will look closer at how you actually put it all to use….I will say, I am a lot more impressed than I thought I was going to be. I thought it would be a bunch of poorly documented tools mashed together with minimal documentation. In reality, it’s a remarkably cohesive and powerful package that covers almost all of the bases. They certainly have my interested piqued. Good job Havok!”
Releasing such a full-featured game development engine, the natural inclination for many people is to ask “what’s the catch?” The Project Anarchy folks address this; basically, become part of the Project Anarchy community, agree to possibly work with them if you end up shipping a title, and build an x86-compatiabil version of the game you’re working on. More from the Project Anarchy page:
“To help Havok make Project Anarchy free for iOS, Android and Tizen we only ask for a few things in return. First and foremost we'd encourage you to become part of the Project Anarchy community and join us in making Project Anarchy a great place to make awesome games. Secondly we'd like the opportunity to do some co-marketing with you when you come to ship your game. We won't be able to work with everyone that ships a title but when you sign up we do ask that you agree to Havok having the option, and don't worry - we don't bite!
Thirdly, if you have created a game targeting Android (or another platform that supports x86 devices such as Tizen) that you plan to upload to an app store, the license requires that you build an equivalent x86-compatible version of the game and upload it alongside any other versions that you have built. Building an x86-compatible version of an Android executable is a very straightforward process and if you have any questions on this part of the process, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll do our best to help.”
Now it’s your turn
IF you’re a developer, do you plan on downloading Project Anarchy and using the Havok suite of tools to create your next game? If you’ve already downloaded it, let us know what you think so far in the comments below.