Rare’s New Games to Have “World Class Lighting;” Might Be Released for PC as Well

Rare’s New Games to Have “World Class Lighting;” Might Be Released for PC as Well

Rare has managed to keep information on their upcoming games pretty much a secret so far, and while we know that they’re working on something, or multiple somethings, we don’t know exactly on what.

Today the Microsoft-owned developer published two new career opportunity ads seeking a Technical Lighting Artist and a Software Engineer – Rendering, that give some hints.

It’s a very exciting time at Rare and we are looking for a highly skilled Technical Lighting Artist to join us and create something special. We want to hear from people who have a passion for lighting and atmospherics balanced with a solid technical understanding of modern lighting and shading techniques. You will work closely with the rest of the Technical Art team and Rendering Programmers to define the lighting and post process systems that achieve the Art Director’s vision. You will also be key in creating the shading models for the game and working with the art teams to ensure all material elements are working in harmony.

Key responsibilities:
• Deliver world class lighting for an exciting new project.
• Work with the Art Director to translate intense mood and atmosphere from concept art to in-game environments.
• Collaborate closely with the Tech Artists and the Rendering Engineers to improve the lighting technology, tools and workflows.
• Work with colour grading and other post process effects to achieve a game with a rich atmosphere, tone and depth.
• Work with other artists to help refine the material behaviours in the game and achieve the highest quality lighting across the entire game.
• Ensure that all lighting deliverables are completed fully and in line with production schedule.
• Maintain a balance between visual quality and performance requirements for realtime game application.

Experience, qualifications and characteristics:
• An outstanding portfolio.
• At least one full project cycle in a Technical Art position.
• 5+ years’ game development experience, with experience in all aspects of lighting for games.
• A base knowledge of programming languages such as Python/C#/C++/HLSL.
• Good knowledge of 3D creation packages (Maya/Max/etc.)
• Solid knowledge of 3D graphics and rendering techniques, especially lighting and shading models (shader creation experience essential).
• Up-to-date experience and knowledge of current game development practices and terminology.
• Degree in Computer Science or similar related subject advantageous.
• Excellent artistic ability.
• Excellent eye for quality control and detail.
• Excellent problem-solving skills, with the ability to rapidly improvise solutions.
• A broad technical understanding with the capacity to learn and utilise new skills quickly.
• Experienced in dealing with the idiosyncrasies of team project work.
• Excellent communication skills.
• Ability to receive direction and constructive feedback.
• Self-motivated and passionate about the end result.
• Experience with Unreal Engine or equivalent is a plus.

The first ad gives us an idea of what we can expect from lighting is one of the studio’s new projects, with the mention of “world class lighting,” intense mood and atmosphere, and rich tone and depth.

This role is part of the Rendering group in Rare’s Tech team. The Tech team, as a whole, is responsible for the development of Rare’s engine and tools, as well as for making direct contributions to its games. Members of the Tech team work in close collaboration with game teams to understand project needs, develop reusable software to address those needs, and integrate what they develop into the game as necessary.

The engineers in the Rendering group work directly alongside our technical artists and visual effects specialists to shape and realise the artistic vision for a product. They research and develop cutting-edge rendering techniques that make best use of the platform so that our games shine.

Key responsibilities:
• Research and develop both low-level rendering systems and product-level graphical effects to support the artistic vision for our products.
• Research and develop low-level, general engine systems to support and advance gameplay features in our products.
• Break down and provide clear feedback on gameplay feature specifications, advocating technical considerations. Assist teams to plan and schedule dependent work effectively.
• Continuously work to minimise technical debt and maintenance hazards.
Build creative solutions to technical problems that enable content creators to achieve world-class results.
• Create software designs that ensure we can easily support future game feature development.
• Devote time to personal improvement in order to remain at the cutting edge of graphics programming knowledge.

Experience, qualifications and characteristics:
• Experience of implementing modern real-time rendering techniques.
• Strong C++ programming and debugging skills using modern C++11.
• An iterative, algorithmic and mathematical approach to solving novel problems.
• Strong software architecture skills with a proven ability to apply these to the graphics domain.
• Knowledge of the wider industry, including current and future trends, with the drive to convert this into practical improvements to our technology.
• Experience of working with several different game engines is an advantage.
• Experience working on AAA game development cycle would be a plus.
• Although not essential, experience of developing rendering pipeline tools would be useful.
Cross-platform development experience is also beneficial, including development on Windows.

The most important tidbit in the second ad is definitely the mention of development on Windows. With Windows 10 coming out in July and Microsoft’s renewed focus on PC gaming, this seems to indicate that one or more of Rare’s future projects might land on PC, following Lionhead’s example with Fable Legends.

It’ll be interesting to see if we’ll finally hear something about their new projects at E3, but for now we can only hope.