Thursday, January 7th, 2016 Posted by Jim Thacker

IKinema launches IKinema RunTime-Indie for UE4

IKinema has rolled out IKinema RunTime-Indie for Unreal Engine 4, a new sub-$150 version of its IK middleware aimed at indie artists and small studios.

Used by developers including Microsoft and Square Enix, IKinema RunTime is a versatile full-body IK solver, enabling devs to modify or retarget source animation clips to generate natural-looking procedural animation.

It includes automatic balance and centre of mass control, so characters can respond automatically to moving terrain; and built-in functionality for looking or pointing at a target, foot placement and climbing.

RunTime-Indie: same as the full version, but Windows-only, and no customer support
The new Indie edition, available to individuals and teams with annual turnovers below $80,000/year, is “technically identical” to the full version of the middleware.

The limitations are that it’s Windows-only – Mac, Linux, iOS and Android support will follow “shortly”, with console support to follow in future – and you don’t get either source code access or tech support.

However, the licence conditions look pretty good: IKinema says that if a game you develop with the Indie edition earns more than $80,000, you only need to upgrade to a full licence for your next title.

In addition, both versions of the middleware now include a built-in rig editor, shown in the video above, enabling users to create IKinema character rigs directly within Unreal Engine 4.

Pricing and availability
IKinema RunTime-Indie is available for Windows only. A node-locked licence costs £99 (around $140), while IKinema says that future feature upgrades will be available “for a small fee of £30”.

IKinema is currently offering the Indie edition at a launch discount of 30% until 24 January.

Updated 11 January: The original version of this story quoted a price of $19.99/month for the full version of IKinema RunTime, including access to WebAnimate Pro, IKinema’s browser tool for editing mocap data.

IKinema tell us that that price was originally for WebAnimate Pro itself, and that it no longer includes RunTime.

The full version of RunTime is now available as a perpetual licence, priced on enquiry, although IKinema tells us that the cost is in the “tens of thousands” of dollars, and varies from platform to platform.

Read more about IKinema RunTime-Indie for Unreal Engine 4 on IKinema’s website