Last week, Epic Games acquired RAD Game Tools. RAD Game Tools is a developer that has created a variety of tools being used on videogames for quite a few years. Among their software you can find Bink Video, a video compressor that creates high quality video files with a small file size, Miles Sound System, a sound system for videogames and Oodle, a software that compresses data, including textures, providing fast decompression, something really useful when you are loading data in your videogames (textures, audio, etc.).
For the announcement, Kim Libreri, CTO of Epic Games said “We know first-hand how impressive RAD’s compression technology is, having used it to improve the load time and quality of our most popular games – including Fortnite. The RAD team includes some of the world’s leading compression, video and game dev tooling experts, and we are thrilled to welcome them to the Epic family.”
From what I understand, RAD Game Tools team will work with the Unreal Engine team to create tools that can better manage the requirements of modern high-quality videogames, as these feature photorealistic graphics with high-resolution textures, or lots of audio data. The RAD tools will also be integrated into Unreal Engine.
On the other hand, RAD Game Tools will continue licensing their products to other companies, so those who were using their tools up until now will not be affected by this acquisition. One thing to keep in mind is that licensing can change in the long run when a company is acquired by another one. For example, look at what Facebook did to Oculus, as they are now forcing users to sign up on Facebook to be able to play their games. Hopefully, this doesn’t happen.
While I am not a user of RAD Game Tools (I only used Bink Video when we were working on Enola a few years ago), I am excited to see what happens after this. As I understand, RAD Game Tools provide very good solutions for videogames, and I can’t wait to see how these tools integrate into Unreal Engine to improve performance and loading times, among other things.
Epic Games: https://www.epicgames.com/
RAD Game Tools: http://www.radgametools.com/