Microsoft acquires in-game physics developer Havok from Intel

Microsoft has announced a new deal that will allow the company to acquire Havok, the well-known game tool creator, from Intel. Havok has created a set of tools and applications that allow game developers to add realistic in-game physics models inside their games.

Microsoft stated it will continue to license Havok's tools to third-party partners. It added:

"We believe that Havok is a fantastic addition to Microsoft's existing tools and platform components for developers, including DirectX 12, Visual Studio and Microsoft Azure. Havok is an amazing technology supplier in the games industry and the leading real-time physics creator. We saw an opportunity to acquire Havok to deliver great experiences for our fans.

Havok launched its first SDK in 2000 and its tools have been used in over 600 PC, console and mobile games. Intel acquired Havok in 2007. Microsoft did not mention any specific financial terms of this new deal but it did state:

We will continue to innovate for the benefit of development partners. Part of this innovation will include building the most complete cloud service, which we've just started to show through games like "Crackdown 3."

Source: Microsoft (opens in new tab)

100 Comments
  • This will be interesting for future microsoft games.
  • @restlessdan:
    iOS and Android games?
    The better question would be: Which games?
    Microsoft sells off all their game studios one after the other, so that they could abandon Microsoft's platforms.
  • What the heck are you taking about?
  • Upset fanboys can't get over that MS apps are on android & iOS too :D
  • @Keith Wallace:
    For example Bungie thanking Microsoft for setting them free, by screwing Xbox One users over.
    They treated Xbox One users so badly, it was almost as if they released the Xbox version of Destiny only to show users what they miss out on compared to Playstation.
  • Still not following you. You're making absolutely zero sense.
  • What, they screwed people over for a little bit of added PS4 DLC? Oh, no!
  • @Keith Wallace:
    This and prior access to the game.
  • But who really cares? If someone on PS4 that you can't even compete against (meaning no competitive advantage) gets a few days' worth of early acces (particularly to a beta, like with BO3), what does that hurt the official street date? I mean, who's on here houding Microsoft for locking Sony gamers out of Rise of the Tomb Raider FOR A YEAR? These complaints always seem one-sided against Sony, not to say that includes how you feel. Me, I think they're all obnoxious deals.
  • @Keith Wallace:
    Certainly ALL these deals are shady.
    But if you're on the rewarded side (I don't own neither Xbox One nor PS4), they may be easier to swallow.
  • stop drinking... I am sure that wouldn't fix the dumbness but maybe that will help so you will realize you are not making any sense. I guess I feel sorry for you, clueless and just crazy person.  
  • These nonsensical ramblings of vitriol and stupidity are why I have you blocked on the forum. You're a Kool-Aid drinking troll who should just shut up.
  • @Keith Wallace:
    I didn't know we met in the forums, not to mention in real life. So far for your ability to seriously judge a person.
    By the way: "Drinking the Kool-aid" refers to a person STICKING to an opinion or a narrative against better knowledge (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drinking_the_Kool-Aid).
    I've been one of Microsoft's most eager proponents until the end of last year, when I, after countless disappointments, finally realized that Satya Nadella's course will keep on steering Microsoft away from serving their most trustful and loyal customers.
    So if you KEEP on insisting that at some miraculous point in the future things will magically get better for users of Microsoft's own ecosystem, it's you who is addicted to Kool-Aid.
  • I wasn't replying to you. The way WC's comments stop stepping after about 3 replies does make it seems that way (along with how everyone in the comment chain gets an alert e-mail). I was responding to Emi, who has long been a hateful, rude commenter here and on the forums to anyone who makes any kind of negative comments about Microsoft contet.
  • @Keith Wallace:
    Oops. Didn't really grasp that.
    Please take my sincere apology and thank you for speaking out on my behalf.
  • +1
  • Youd think acti would've ended them by now like they did with bizarre creations
  • Someone hurt up and tell us why you hate the ring on the 950.
  • Wrong article? Lol
    Anyways the only reason im not downgrading in size to the 950 (I had a 1520 & 640xl) is due to that unsightly tacky metal ring. The 950xl simply looks sexier
  • Indeed. I'm still holding it hope AT&T gets the XL, or I'll have to learn to live with that stupid thing. Not throwing possibly $700+ off-contract at a phone.
  • Yeah if at&t doesn't grab it, guess ill stick with my 640xl. That'd be a shame rly
  • Nah, I'm on this 3-year-old 920. I have to get a new phone. The battery life and heat are atrocious.
  • I hear ya.  My 920 is starting to really show it's age, although it may be more a factor of having been dropped a lot. Right now I am sporting my second cracked screen (but usable!), a speaker that sometimes works instead of making what sounds like an electronic death rattle, and a battery that will sometimes last forever, and sometimes drain in a matter of hours, while doing nothing. I really REALLY need a new phone.  Please do not disappoint, 950XL
  • You need to work on your hand-eye coordination, haha. Mine's taken one bad tumble to concrete, and you can barely tell. It was a few months after the drop that I found the mark in the upper-left of my 920. My non-speakerphone audio cuts out, so I always talk on speakerphone now, and like I said, the thing's battery is really bad and it gets SUPER hot on LTE (especially if GPS is also going). I'm slowly dragging my 920 to the finish line for a 950, as I'm not too hopeful that AT&T will get the XL...
  • I'm not giving up my 920 until the 1020 successor is released, so I'm probably going to be waiting awhile. The issues I had too have disappeared so I'm even happier, and the battery life still isn't too bad unless I'm on FB Messenger or the FB apps.
  • AT&T will likely make you pay full price for it anyway, in installments, but still full price.
  • Well, sort of. You can upgrade by trading in the phone at about the 60% paid mark. Even if I didn't go that route, it's more about the fact that I just started a new job and haven't had a chance to save a spare $700+. Paying $25-35/month is easy to manage at the moment, especially since I will be putting a chunk of money into a new Xbox One next month (and my paycheck after that is after the phone launches).
  • I was being sarcastic about these cry babies turning everything into a boo hoo match about the ring.
  • In fairness, The Ring is kind of a dumb movie.
  • Lol
  • I kinda like it. DONT SHOOT
  • Can't believe no one said it yet.... One ring to rule them all!
  • One of the main reasons why i ditched attempting making games with project anarchy (stripped down version of havok engine) was not only how hard/buggy it was but only supported iOS and Android (and PC with an extra cost). So im now a Unity dev. This should be interestin​g...Unity vs Unreal vs Havok. I wonder what they plan to do with it? Integrate into Visual Studio?
  • A havok plug in for VS 2015 would be ideal, just like we have that unity plug in.
  • i have a feeling it will implement it on future HoloLens games.
  • Microsoft is securing it's future in very solid way. More interesting things to come from Microsoft.
  • they have that to deal with and also in gaming industry.  sony is seriously leading even with their crappy service, game titles and shitty playstation OS
  • @prith, yep.....
  • Yes, I am really feeling it! (relevant ssb reference)
  • They state something about cloud, so they will probably offer an azure service coupled with others (Orleans, live services.etc) for making on line multiplayer games.
  • Now MS just needs AMD
  • Not really. AMD hasn't released a competitive piece of CPU hardware in, like, 5 years. Unless MS already has a plan for a new architecture that doesn't suck like Bulldozer and its offspring, they'd still need Intel for the Surface devices, as AMD stuff is horrible with power efficiency.
  • The new Zen CPUs are going to be equal or better than Intel CPU's
  • I hope at least equal.
  • That's just wishful thinking and is not going to happen. They'll beat Intel on price (like always), but that's it.
  • LOL, we've heard that story before. Then it turned out Bulldozer was inefficient and couldn't clock well enough to be relevant. Since then, they skipped PileDriver and SteamRoller desktop CPUs because no one wanted them. Call me when they actually have the new cores ready and REAL testing shows them as competent processors.
  • I'm an AMD fanboy, but I fail to believe your comment. If Intel processors are lowering TDP/heat per generation, don't expect AMD to have a huge leap of it.
  • I agree the Zen looks like a very competiive chip on paper.  At the very least if does live up to being near (or better) then the  ability of Intels current line it will make Intel  more competitive with the pricing of their chips.  With no true competition for mid to high range chipsthat  Intel  provides they have been able to keep prices higher.  AMD may also be a good move for Microsoft (and also a bad move, but it like to be postivie so lets look at as  good move).  It could purchased for a song as the stock is down in the dumps because they aren't competiive.  If the Zen and upcoming mobile chips are successful their value will rise exponentially. Someone may buy it as it is prime for such a move (Apple? and Chinese company?) and I believe Microsoft would rather have it under their fold than some one else (but is just me talking out of my lower orifice   Since the spinoff of Global Foundries from AMD there is very little direct risk in the manufacturing end.  They could shop around if GF was not giving them the deal they needed for the chips production. Their console line uses the chip.  I don't see this being the last generation of the Xbox so purchasing the creator for most of the more important internals may be a smart move.  I also don't see Intel ever bringing a chip that would be competitve to AMD at the console level as they tend to charge a premium that does not allow for the slim margins a conole has already.  Let's just say AMD makes  makes  20% for each Xbox console that would be about billion plus dollars saved on the 15 million Xbox Ones sold.  Just as important it also allows them to receive a money (even though  as I said the margins  are only 15) from Sony and most likely Nintendo for each of their consoles. (Please people, with anti-competive comeback, many companies buy or use competitor products e.g. Samsung)  The money they saved/made from my imaginary, no evidence numbers would almost cover the cost of the purchasing AMD. It may allow them to design a better chip for use in their Holo devices and other devices that the plan to do in the future.  At the very least have better control of specialization of those chips. Now the bad... Nah...  I will just be positive today.
  • I agree the Zen looks like a very competiive chip on paper.  At the very least if does live up to being near (or better) then the  ability of Intels current line it will make Intel  more competitive with the pricing of their chips.  With no true competition for mid to high range chipsthat  Intel  provides they have been able to keep prices higher.  AMD may also be a good move for Microsoft (and also a bad move, but it like to be postivie so lets look at as  good move).  It could purchased for a song as the stock is down in the dumps because they aren't competiive.  If the Zen and upcoming mobile chips are successful their value will rise exponentially. Someone may buy it as it is prime for such a move (Apple or a Chinese company?) and I believe Microsoft would rather have it under their fold than some one else (but is just me talking out of my lower orifice.)   Since the spinoff of Global Foundries from AMD there is very little direct risk in the manufacturing end like there was with Nokia.  They could shop around if GF was not giving them the deal they needed for the chips production. Their console line uses the chip.  I don't see this being the last generation of the Xbox so purchasing the creator for most of the more important internals may be a smart move.  I also don't see Intel ever bringing a chip that would be competitve to AMD at the console level as they tend to charge a premium that does not allow for the slim margins and conole has already.  Let's just say AMD makes  makes  20% for each Xbox console that would be about billion plus dollars saved on the 15 million Xbox Ones sold.  Just as important it also allows them to receive a money (even though  as I said the margins  are only 15) from Sony and most likely Nintendo for each of their consoles. (Please people, with anti-competive comeback, many companies buy or use competitor products e.g. Samsung)  The money they saved/made from my imaginary, no evidence numbers would almost cover the cost of the purchasing AMD. It may allow them to design a better chip for use in their Holo devices and other devices that the plan to do in the future.  At the very least have better control of specialization of those chips. Now the bad... Nah...  I will just be positive today.
  • That's a thing that is often said about AMD's new CPU's, but it never comes true. The fact is that AMD simply does not have the finances or resources to really fight Intel
  • Do they really have to fight intel though?  If MS can do with AMD what Apple does for their line of Ax processors, does it matter?  The Wintel love would never care that MS bought AMD.  If anything it would allow two tech firms to share patents that at this moment may stop some dev at this time frame.  Oppening many new doors.
  • Does AMD have to fight Intel? Well, no, but what business are they running if they stop producing x86 processors; rather, why are they producing them? If Microsoft got AMD and tried to treat it like an Apple SoC matter, they're still fighting Intel, and they're adding Qualcomm as an opponent. The mobile space involves Qualcomm for ARM, and Intel's trying to push its Atom SoCs into that space as well. Snatching up AMD to develop chips it doesn't have (partially thanks to Global Foundries' horrid die shrink progress). So, are you suggesting that Microsoft just go ARM and fight Qualcomm for mobile, then let its business-class (or whatever a Surface Phone is) devices be Intel's to rule? I don't know that Microsoft would buy a chip maker to shove its stuff into what will mostly be low-margin budget devices. If they then try to go at warp speed to get a low-nm, x86 SoC ready, they still have to fight Intel and make them mad, which means attacking the only big-die chip maker. If Intel pulls out of the Surface Pro devices because Microsoft wants to make its own SoCs for the smaller devices (including the non-Pro Surfaces), then Microsoft's shooting itself in the face. The other part is that if Microsoft bought up AMD and pulled it from the big-chip (desktop/laptop) market, two problems potentially arise: 1. Intel gets beaten half to death by antitrust courts (Microsoft actually floated Apple some money about 20 years ago to keep it alive so this didn't happen to it). 2. Microsoft leaves itself with no Intel alternative in the PC market (same for other PC OEMs), and Intel gets an excuse to jack up prices (bad) or slow progress to maximize profits (potentially worse). To put it simply: AMD's desktop/laptop chip stuff needs to exist for Intel's sake and everyone else's. Microsoft certainly knows this, so if they boguht AMd, it'd HAVE to come with some kind of CPU ideas behind it, I'd imagine.
  • I thought they made APU, which was some sorta CPU/GPU combo..? =s
  • They do, but they also do standalone GPUs (and sort of CPUs). The APUs just are low-end hardware, meant to work well with HTPCs and the like without the electricity guzzling of the full hardware.
  • Its actually been 10 years since AMD could actually compete on CPU performance with Intel
  • I wouldn't say that. The Phenom II chips were solid, especially whne comparing price. I got one in 2009, and it lasted me just fune for about 4.5 years, and now it's powering my cousin's PC (sold him the parts when I upgraded to a Haswell i5 in January 2014).
  • Even phenom was a terrible waste. If they could make one that runs cool and uses ram in a more efficient way theyd have a winner
  • If it could somehow acquire NVIDIA (I know very well there's way too scarce a chance of that, is almost surely never gonna happen) then that'd be amazing. AMD is terrible when compared to NVIDIA, everyone knows that Posted via the Windows Central App
  • AMD? I do not agree;  neither their CPUs or GPUs <insert any statement here>.
  • MS has a great foothold in corporate servers which mostly use i presume intel chips. Won't be a smart move unless MS willing to fund a hell lot of money for the R&D. But who knows?
  • Actually ms move to a custom solution
  • I hope Microsoft uses Havok as a bargaining chip to get more developers to support Xbox and Windows 10 Mobile.  MS could offer devs half off the licensing fee, or license it for free, if they make an exclusive Xbox or W10 game.
  • The second deal is good
  • No, thank you, to third-party exclusives. I hate such deals, as they only hurt the consumer.
  • You're right of course, but I don't think they'll do exclusives anymore...they have enough don't they? ;)
  • Maybe? The could use a new RPG franchise, Fable is kind of meh to me. They also really need a baseball game, from my perspective. We'll see how quickly they can produce new stuff. They definitely need to do something about the Kinect, which has almost nothing in the way of good software.
  • Yes on the Baseball game MLBs RBI is not going to cut it.
  • They only hurt one consumer PS4-only consumers... so ... who cares?
  • Well, unless you're a Street Fighter fan. There won't be an Xbox One release of the new game because of a third-party exclusivity deal. Oh, and if you're a Kingdom Hearts fan, too bad--you won't get the 1.5, 2.5, or 2.8 ReMix releases on Xbox One (the first two are on PS3, the third is coming to PS4). So, no, it's not only PS4 owners who are hurt. I'd love to play all of the pre-KH3 games before the latest launches, and now I have to but a PS3 AND a PS4 because of these deals.
  • Unity being free for Windows and Windows Phone did help a little, but unfortunately, developers still flock to the platform with the most users. Since Android and iOS dominate the mobile market and right now most of the profit is in the mobile market that's where developers go first. As a developer myself, I can honestly say at last that the Microsoft platform is second to none from the .NET languages, developer tools, windows 10 platform and cloud services, no one can even come close right now, however, the users are not there yet so it makes no difference. Developers don't control the money, the people who control the money don't care what the developers want or what the developers think is best, they want the smallest investment, quickest turn around and the largest profit, that is after all what their job is all about. When Windows 10 Mobile grabs the same or more market share that iOS has, there will be a sudden and huge shift of companies going as fast as they can to get their apps and games on Windows. Give it a few years and this might happen, but don't expect it so soon or you will be disappointed. My company will be forcing me to learn Java this year because someone up top decided they will make a little bit more profit by developing in Java instead of .NET, what they fail to understand is that we will spend more money in the long run maintaining, supporting and optimising the software. If developers really had more control then a lot more software companies would be innovating and making more money in the long run. Sorry about the rant, I really don't like this Java decision.
  • Only if microsoft had the power to acquire every app developer there is we not only would have the most number of apps but our market share would have also been increased
  • Whoa! This could be huge for Direct X.
  • Sweet
  • Best
  • Wow I don't know exactly why Microsoft wants it, but I never saw intel doing much about it. I am I still remember when 3ds​max used Havok for the physics engine, it was okay, but it never progressed too much. But maybe Microsoft will integrate it cheap or free for Windows universal games  
  • "Microsoft has announced a new deal that will allow the company to acquire Havok" What?
  • Interesting. This could actually mark the end of PhysX.
  • And the future of Adobe too!
  • Sadly the only game I know off the top of my head to use Havok is Sonic '06.
  • I remember seeing the symbol in a few...but yeah it's hard to really 'remember' these things as they are more a nuts and bolts thing than what you're playing =[
  • I remember the Morden combat 4! They showed havok in the opening of the game.
  • Red Faction uses havok physics! (Where you can destroy every single construction in the map!)
  • What about... Suuper Smaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaash Brotherrrs!!!!!!
  • Give Dungeon Hunter 5 a try. An XBox app & uses Havok. Wonder how this game will be optimized.
  • Dark Souls, Destiny, Mortal Kombat X, just to name a few
  • There are bucket loads of games that utilise Havok, although I haven't seen the logo recently.
  • Maybe this was(is) being used development of Crackdown.
  • It is.
  • Outstanding move. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Good. This investment in gaming means something for their platform. It's kind of a strange one, though, since they could already license it.  So, curious how this fits into expanding and fortifying the positions they are staking out.  Maybe something to augment and improve API available to HoloLens so that it can be a consumer grade device?  Maybe just to make more games. Maybe just because it was for sale and licensing stuff "ain't never hurt nobody" (if you're the license holder) HA.  Curious, honestly.
  • Attention mobile game devs! Want Havok for free in your Android and iOS games? All you have to do is also release it on Windows Mobile!
  • you can already export Unity projects to WP. As for whether Havok is included, well, idk.
  • Good purchase. Havok physics engine is used in sunset overdrive. Among many other current gen consoles.
  • Dude......yall watch out for XBOX TWO....! they are hidding something bigger than the cloud, they are going for the world
  • Great to see seeing as sega & rare use it alot
  • Quick!! Ask for a Darksiders 3 game!!!
  • Love that #Crackdown was mentioned. So many memories in the first one.
  • Oh Microsoft is wrecking havok on them, sugbon a ni Unity sha.
  • Not just games, I think it has more to do with hololens mapping and physics simulation for the things that appear in that 3d space
  • This is great news, Havok is very widely used so it was a genius idea to acquire it.