‘Troopers’ do battle in Web game

Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Imageworks digital effects and filmmaking unit has scored a coup by not only creating many of the extraordinary visual effects for TriStar’s “Starship Troopers,” they also created an Internet-based game for the film’s Web site, one of the first such inhouse cross-creations yet.

The game, written in the newish VRML 3-D programming language, is a hot addition to the movie’s site (www.starshiptroops.com), and has the added bonus of carrying over the look of the film into the game.

Since it was written and finished in less than eight weeks — a short time in the development of computer-based games — the Troopers game could be the first of a series of marketing-driven add-ons generated by Imageworks’ computer graphics staff for Sony releases.

The development process also gave positive feedback to the notion that VRML and modern programming languages like it can inform numerous other Sony projects. “The knowledge we’ve gained … can be applied to everything from strategy games, simulations and chat worlds,” said Paul Condolora, Imageworks’ executive director of multimedia production. “With every project we do, we expand our vision of what VRML can do, as well as our production knowledge.”

The game is currently available off of the Starship Troopers Web site and requires a Pentium-class, Windows-based PC to run correctly.

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