The Division's Snowdrop engine could be heading to other Ubisoft series, according to Martin Hultberg, head of IP at Ubisoft Massive.
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The Snowdrop engine was built specifically to power The Division, its open-world, dynamic weather and day/night cycle, as well as making it easier to incorporate its lobby-free multiplayer, but the technology could be used with other existing franchises in the future, reveals Hultberg in an interview with Finder.
"Internally we try to share as much technology as possible between the studios,” he says. “It’s just more efficient that way. In our case we developed the Snowdrop Engine from the ground-up because we needed middleware that could run on the new consoles and PC, while doing everything we wanted to do with the open world, the weather, time of day and such features. Now we’ve made that engine available to other studios, and not just the Clancy teams. Any Ubisoft team can use Snowdrop now.”
Speaking of The Division's 'Dark Zone' - its lobby-free competitive multiplayer area - Hultberg explains that this functionality isn't specific to The Division, but the clean transitions and lack of menus certainly is. "I think that feature could definitely be incorporated into other Ubisoft games like Assassin’s Creed. It’s a really immersive feature that I think fits with pretty much all Ubisoft’s IPs.”
The Division release on March 8, and there's an open beta running throughout this weekend. We recently got comment from Ubisoft to reassure PC players that the PC version of The Division wasn't "held back", following the comments of an unnamed Ubisoft developer suggesting that was the case.