Amazon Lumberyard is the only game engine that gives you a combination of free, feature-rich development technology, native integration to the AWS Cloud to make it easier to create live and multiplayer games, and native integration of Twitch features that help you connect games to the world’s leading social video platform and community for gamers.
By starting game projects with Lumberyard, you are able to spend more of your time creating differentiating gameplay and building communities of fans, and less time on the undifferentiated heavy lifting of building a game engine and managing server infrastructure.
You can use Amazon Lumberyard to build rich and engaging games with the highest ceiling of quality through its comprehensive and proven toolset, and runtime performance that has been highly optimized over many years. With Lumberyard, you get a full-featured editor, native code performance, stunning visuals, and hundreds of other features like performant networking, character and animation editors, particle editor, cloth physics, UI editor, audio tools, weather effects, flocking AI, perception handling, camera frameworks, path finding, and more. You also have full access to Amazon Lumberyard source code, making it easy to customize the technology to create differentiated gameplay.
The visuals technology of Lumberyard is based upon CryEngine, which has created award-winning graphical fidelity and benchmark-setting graphical performance, and we have extended this technology with support for iOS Metal to bring this level of performance to mobile devices. Your artists get powerful rendering technology and authoring tools to create near-photorealistic and HDR environments and stunning real-time effects, including physically based shaders, dynamic global illumination, a particle effects editor, vegetation tools, real-time dynamic water caustics, volumetric fog, and filmic features such as color grading, motion blur, depth of field, lens flares, and more.
Your artists can use Lumberyard to create believable characters and high-fidelity performances that immerse players. Lumberyard’s character tool, Geppetto, combines animation, attachments, and physics simulations with blendshape, blendspace, and animation layering. Combined with Lumberyard’s animation tool, Mannequin, animators can bring believable characters and creatures to life with dozens of features, including animation sequencing, transitions, ragdoll physics, and more.
Real-time gameplay editing enables you to iterate on gameplay and immediately see your results, without waiting for builds or leaving the editor. For example, your designers can import game objects, fine tune their behavior, and in one keystroke, instantly play the game they’ve just created. Additionally, Lumberyard’s asynchronous asset processor automatically converts and optimizes game assets for your device platforms while you work, improving iteration time for your team.
Lumberyard introduces a new robust and flexible networking subsystem, GridMate, designed for efficient bandwidth usage and low-latency communications. You can easily synchronize objects over the network with GridMate’s replica framework. GridMate’s session management integrates with major online console services and lets you handle peer to peer and client server topologies with host migration.
Lumberyard’s Modular Gems system gives you a library of 22 pre-built features that can be used to quickly start new projects or prototype ideas. Modular Gems give you increased control over which technologies you want to include in your game project. You can create your own Modular Gems, or use any of the ones included with Lumberyard, such as realistic weather effects, gesture controls, integration with Allegorithmic's Substance, a boids-based ambient creature system, lightning effects, a camera framework, and more.
Lumberyard includes an exclusive, free version of Audiokinetic’s advanced, feature-rich sound engine and authoring tool for PC games, Wwise LTX. Audiokinetic’s Wwise audio technology has been used in hundreds of popular games. With minimal dependency on engineers, sound designers and composers can use Wwise LTX to work independently and author rich soundscapes for your games.
Lumberyard provides free access to its native C++ source code. C++ is the language that over 90% of top PC and console games are written in. C++ gives developers full control over the memory, CPU and graphics hardware, so you can maximize performance for complex gameplay, graphics, AI, and more. Free access to source code means that on day one of your project, your engineers can focus their efforts on customizing Lumberyard in the specific areas needed to create differentiators for your game and realize your creative vision.
Additional discipline-specific toolsets provide professional artists, game designers, gameplay engineers, animators, and other specialists the opportunity to create unique, thrilling and differentiated content. With terrain tools, weather effects, time of day controllers, input systems, perception handling, Lua support, pathfinding, and more, Lumberyard provides the tools to help achieve your vision. For full information on all of Lumberyard's features and how to use them, please see our Lumberyard Editor User Guide and our Developer Guide for engineers.
Lumberyard is integrated with Amazon GameLift, a managed service that makes it simple to deploy, operate, and scale session-based multiplayer game servers in the cloud. Amazon GameLift dramatically reduces the time required to build a multiplayer backend from thousands of hours to just minutes. With Amazon GameLift, you can monitor the activity of your games and players, maintain a real-time record of available server capacity, and automatically scale up and down to meet player demand.
Your engineers and technical designers with little to no backend experience can build live online game features, such as community news feeds, sharing scores, and server-side combat resolution, in minutes using Lumberyard’s Cloud Canvas tool. With Cloud Canvas’ visual scripting interface, your team can build connected game features that access AWS services, such as DynamoDB, Lambda, S3, Cognito, SNS, and SQS. In minutes, developers can create features such as granting a daily gift or sending in-game notifications without having to write a single line of code. Included with Cloud Canvas are samples that demonstrate how to create and deploy common online services such as a server-authenticated gift, leaderboards, in-game messages, and more.
Lumberyard is integrated with the AWS SDK for C++, so your engineers can access the vast compute and storage of the cloud, both to connect large communities of fans in online multiplayer experiences, as well as to go beyond a single device’s capabilities to create new game experiences. The AWS SDK for C++ helps reduce the complexity of backend coding by providing C++ APIs for dozens of AWS services including Amazon S3, Amazon EC2, DynamoDB, and more with support for all major native platforms. To further accelerate development, we added functions that package up commonly implemented tasks. Today, this growing set of functionality makes Identity management using Cognito even easier, packages up managing background data transfer to and from Amazon S3, simplifies the usage of SQS by expressing the service directly as a queue data structure, and makes it easier to create and maintain AMI images for EC2.
The Twitch ChatPlay feature within Amazon Lumberyard helps you build gameplay that interacts in real-time with Twitch viewers. For example, you could build a game where spectators can vote on game outcomes, gift power-ups to their favorite players, or change the level based on the number of viewers watching the broadcaster. Using Lumberyard’s Flow Graph visual scripting tool, non-technical game designers can easily create chat channel commands for your game. For example, you could build a multiplayer game where viewers can vote to drop grenades to the broadcaster by typing #boom in the Twitch chat channel.
Metastream lets Twitch streamers look like pros by letting them deeply customize broadcasts of your game. By adding Metastream to your game, your streamers can use any HTML tool to create and display dynamic real-time graphics based on the data you provide, similar to those used in professional esports and television broadcasts. For example, overlays could include minimaps, objective status, and player stats that update when game events happen. Adding Metastream to your Lumberyard game is simple – just enable the Metastream Gem for your project, and add a single line of code for each piece of data you want to expose.
The Twitch JoinIn feature within Lumberyard lets you build multiplayer games that allow Twitch broadcasters to instantly invite fans to join them side-by-side in the game. Once invited, a fan can jump into the broadcaster’s game with a single click in the Twitch chat channel, while others continue to watch.
Games that support mods and user-generated content have extended lifespans, and increased virality and player retention. Lumberyard is mod friendly – you can include components from the Lumberyard Editor into your games so that your end users can create content with the same tools that you use.
Amazon Lumberyard is free, including full source code. You can deeply customize Lumberyard for your team, vision, and project today, and for future projects in years to come. There are no seat fees, subscription fees, or requirements to share revenue. You only pay for the AWS services you choose to use.
In addition to Lumberyard, Amazon offers a growing selection of cross-platform building blocks for game developers. These tools and services help you build on the shoulders of Amazon commerce, AWS, and Twitch, and make and deliver experiences that garner vibrant communities of passionate fans.
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