Nintendo Signs Middleware Deal with Autodesk

Nintendo has signed a deal with Autodesk to allow the former’s developers to use the latter’s Gameware software for Wii U development. Among the Gameware tools are the Havok physics development kits. Nintendo will also be able to offer middleware Scaleform, Kynapse, and HumanIK.

These tools have been used in over 1,000 games, the latest and most notable of which include The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.

Analysis: Talking to industry sources, I’m noticing a trend: most of them are saying, “What’s the big deal?” Havok is no longer a name; most of their tools have been done just as well by Bullet (used in Trials HD), which is open source. Scaleform isn’t bad, but there are alternatives. HumanIK is likely the most usable SDK in the list. As for Kynapse, it’s nice to have, but one source I talked to said that anyone of middling resources could build something similar within a week or two. With Nintendo’s resources, likely less.

This isn’t a bad thing by any stretch, but here’s hoping Nintendo didn’t overpay for a big name because there are alternatives to the vast majority of all of these, and they cost either much less or nothing at all.

Christopher Bowen

About Christopher Bowen

Christopher Bowen is the Editor in Chief of Gaming Bus. Before opening Gaming Bus in May of 2011, he was the News Editor at Diehard GameFAN, a lead reporter for DailyGamesNews, and a reviewer at Not A True Ending, also contributing to VIMM, SNESZone and Scotsmanality. Outside of the industry, he is a network engineer in Norwalk, CT and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.