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Rayman Origins middleware to go open source

Rayman Origins is beautiful enough that you'd expect Ubisoft to keep the middleware powering for itself, but it plans to make the tech freely available.

"UbiArt has been built to be shared. It won’t be like other games technologies, which are often just locked away,” Rayman creator Michel Ancel told Develop.

“If the guys who invented the paintbrush only kept it for themselves then fine art [would be in a sorry state], it would be ephemeral. So yes, I want [UbiArt] to be open source, I want it to go out and be shared and evolved.”

Ancel suggested the hoarding of proprietary tech is holding the industry back, as collaboration is more efficient than striking out alone.

“If you look at the best artists at Disney for example, they create incredible books and artwork and share their processes – it’s interesting because those same people are happy to look at how other artists are developing their style," he said.

"That whole medium has evolved on the basis of sharing ideas. But in games we lock it all in a black box and keep it to ourselves.

“A lot of independent developers fail or struggle because of that trend. We need to be more open. I don’t believe that keeping the technology to yourself is interesting. I want someone to look at our game and be inspired to use the tools to be artistic themselves. It is more interesting to have a community and share our content.”

Rayman Origins is due on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii in late 2011, with 3DS and PS Vita versions apparently in the works, too.

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