Autodesk has today announced that it’s acquired Swedish-based Bitsquid AB, creators of a game engine used in a handful of popular indie titles: Magicka: Wizard Wars, War of the Vikings, War of the Roses, and Helldivers. Autodesk says that by acquiring Bitsquid it enables the company to “supercharge its portfolio of tools for game makers“.
Interestingly, Autodesk isn’t simply planning to offer Bitsquid as a new solution to its customers, or just toss it into a pre-existing package. Instead, it looks like the company will make good use of the engine and Bitsquid’s team to design brand-new tools that will affect a lot more than just gaming:
In addition to acquiring the Bitsquid game engine, the acquisition of the Bitsquid team and technology will enable Autodesk to create new tools that push the limits of real-time 3D visualization for architects and designers, many of whom face challenges placing design data into real world contexts. The new technology will also be incorporated into solutions for customers outside of the games industry, including architecture, manufacturing, construction, and film. Autodesk plans to create new types of design exploration tools that allow visualization and contextualization of designs using the same fluid control and immediate feedback that exist today in modern console and PC games.
On a different note, you might recall that this past April, Autodesk brought its Maya LT software to Steam. At the time, though, its pricing scheme was a bit odd. With a single subscription option of $50/mo, someone who knew they’d be using the tool for a while would have been better-off subscribing direct from Autodesk using the annual license. Well, instead of adding an annual license to Steam, the company’s decided to simply drop the price, to $30/mo.
At quick glance, that updated pricing seems fantastic, but, the same overall price drop has been seen on the official website, which now offers the software at the annual fee of $240 – $120 less annually than Steam’s monthly subscription option. It almost seems like Autodesk doesn’t want to commit to Steam for the long-haul. If that changes, I hope we’ll finally see that annual option added.