Capcom Unveils Panta Rhei Engine and ‘Deep Down’ for the PlayStation 4

By Joseph Leray

During their PlayStation 4 announcement press conference, Sony trotted out Yoshinori Ono -- the producer of the “Street Fighter IV” series -- to let the proverbial cat of out Capcom’s bag.

The bulk of Ono’s presentation charted out Capcom’s progress over the years with regards to Sony’s various platforms: the 3D modeling possible on the original PlayStation, for example, paved the way for the “Resident Evil” series, and the Vita’s online capabilities were fundamental to the success of “Monster Hunter.” Explaining that the PlayStation 4 would usher in a “new era of entertainment,” Ono also announced Capcom’s brand new, proprietary Panta Rhei game engine.

Ono described Panta Rhei -- which, sidebar, is the best codename I think I’ve ever heard -- as “an evolutionary step from the MT Framework engine,” which was used for almost every Capcom-developed game on the PS3 and Xbox 360. It’s worth noting that MT Framework was specifically designed for Capcom’s work on “Dead Rising,” and “Lost Planet.” Similarly, Panta Rhei is being developed “concurrently” with “Deep Down,” the working title of a new, medieval-themed Capcom IP.

Ono didn’t have any specifics about what Panta Rhei does particularly well -- as opposed to say, Epic Games’ Unreal Engine 4, which was also on display during Sony’s conference -- but he promised that it would allow a “new direction for game design.”

On to “Deep Down,” then! There are, predictably, no concrete details about the game, but the trailer (which starts at about the 4:25 mark of the video above) shows off some dragon-stabbing and some hiding-behind-a-shield. Given it’s medieval setting, I wouldn’t be surprised to find some “Dragon’s Dogma” alumni working on “Deep Down,” once we learn more about the game.

Medieval dragon-slaying seems to be popular among the suits at Capcom HQ: “Dragon’s Dogma” sold more than expected, well-enough to spawn a sequel and the upcoming “Dark Arisen” expansion.

[Capcom-Unity]

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