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Monday, January 22, 2001
Another Cipher Q&A
3:41 PM | Andy Largent | Comment on this story

Another interview with Synaptic Soup about their multiplatform engine
Cipher has appeared recently; this time CFXWeb talks with developer
Rik Heywood. The beautiful new engine is creating a buzz not only for its
graphics, but also because it currently runs on Mac, PC, and Linux (with plans
to support every modern console as well). A racing title called Crazy Car
is going to be the first in-house game to use the engine, and
will be released in about a year. Here's a clip from the interview with more
on how easily the platforms will network with each other:

Antara: How portable is Cipher? As in how much work would it take to port a game written on your engine from one platform to another.

Rik Heywood : It is actually possible to do no work at all, though most teams would want to make adjustments to get the most from their target platform. Because Cipher lets you compile all the game code into a platform independent byte code, it is possible to run this on different platforms without having to even recompile the game code. For example, I can take the pak files for Crazy Car Championship (which contain all the resources for the game and the bytecode for the ui and game code), copy them onto a Mac and run the game using the Mac build of Cipher. That's it.
The most likely work that would be needed would be in adjusting the games resources to the target platform. How much work was needed here would really depend on how much you exploited each platform. If you targeted the lowest common denominator, then you could get away with doing nothing. If you customise all your models and textures to maximise the usage of all the supported platforms you will have quite a lot to do.

This is a very encouraging trend, and we hope more engine-makers begin designing
with other platforms in mind. Crazy Car Championship is due for release quite some time in the future,
but we'll bring you any interesting tidbits that may appear about it (or Cipher itself)
during development.

Synaptic Soup Web Site
CFXWeb Interview with Rik Heywood

Other Mac Games News for Monday, January 22, 2001

Europa Universalis Preview4:07 PM
• Another Cipher Q&A3:41 PM
iDevGames Interviews Westlake, MacSoft10:18 AM
Michael Evans on Oni9:55 AM
Mac Halo in Jeopardy... Again?9:39 AM
Red Faction First Look8:33 AM
Apple to Offer BTO Sound Blaster?6:00 AM
G4/533 Review at XLR8YourMac6:00 AM
IMG Reviews Livin' Large6:00 AM
Rune Art Interview6:00 AM
Westlake Adds Two New Projects6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Monday, January 22, 2001 on one page

Mac Games News for Friday, January 19, 2001

Tony Hawk 2: First Playable, Details12:02 PM
Neverwinter Nights Interview11:22 AM
More on Crazy Car Championship10:06 AM
Apple Chases Down Driver9:12 AM
Myth III Details Emerge9:07 AM
Parsec SDK Thesis Available9:01 AM
Oni Special Move Feature6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Friday, January 19, 2001 on one page

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