GDC08: Epic's tech to power network with focus on user-created content

Nurien to make UE3-powered virtual world

Korean studio Nurien is to use Epic’s Unreal Engine 3 to make an online social networking service.

Integrated into the world will be three distinct titles: MStar, a rhythm dance title with user-generated content support; Runway, a fashion show that allows players to both design and model their own clothes; and a trivia game called QuizStar.

“We wanted to create a social virtual world – sort of like a 3D MySpace – where users can create, collect, combine and share legacy media such as music, photos, video as well as 3D objects such as clothing, furniture, pets, cars and more, all in a beautiful 3D environment,” said Taehoon Kim, co-founder of Nurien Software.

“We wanted to give users a powerful new vehicle for self-expression that breaks down real world limitations. We at Nurien believe that if people created homepages in the ‘90s to express themselves, and if they have migrated to blogging and using social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace today, then the next natural step will be to inhabit fun, virtual worlds with user-created avatars.”

Epic Games VP Jay Wilbur added: “What makes Nurien’s platform so exciting is the fact that it pulls Unreal Engine 3 into an entirely new arena. Nurien has created a gorgeous social dance game, along with other online social network applications, that look nothing like anything that has ever been created with our technology before. ‘MStar,’ ‘Runway’ and ‘QuizStar’ will deliver completely new gameplay experiences, and we are thrilled to give everyone a sneak peak at these games at this year’s Game Developers Conference.”

The social online world is set for a mid-2008 release in Korea, a Q4 2008 release in China and a US launch in 2009.

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