By and large PC gamers simply want the best hardware they can afford to play the best-looking and best-performing games on any platform. Like with any hobby, though, there are those who take things further and need the aesthetics of their rig to reflect its internal power. For those people there is Alienware, the company that built its name on powerful PC hardware coated with flashy case designs filled with an abundance of neon-colored lights.
Today Alienware announced that it has teamed up with game developer Crytek to put lighting control software directly into Crytek's Cryengine game engine.
For Alienware PC owners this means the software will allow them to control those bright lights on their cases. Lighting themes and "special effects" can be chosen for the different lights on cases, customizing them as one would a Christmas tree.
For developers using Cryengine this deal has other implications. According to Alienware, the AlienFX software that Crytek is putting into Cryengine will allow developers to control case lighting on Alienware PCs, causing them to change along with gameplay. Some examples might include different colors for different in-game areas, lights that flash along with in-game events, and cut-scenes that have their own lighting themes. Alienware says these effects are enabled through the "FlowGraph" scripting included with Cryengine.
“One of the greatest things I love about being a gamer are the amazing and exciting experiences you get every time a new, cutting edge title is released,” said Frank Azor, general manager of Alienware. “Working with Crytek allows us to amplify that excitement with truly immersive games that can be played on any platform.”
In return for this lighting software business, Alienware has given Crytek Alienware hardware with which to demonstrate the new initiative. The PCs include Alienware X51 desktops and Alienware 14 & 17 gaming laptops.
While it may be dubious that flashy, distracting lights during a gaming session will entice consumers into buying more Alienware PCs, it is worth noting that this deal is one of many that PC manufacturers are making to help make PCs seem more attractive. As the overall PC industry continues to decline, gaming PCs could be one of the niche products that survives the decline unscathed.
Image via Alienware