MT Framework is a game engine created by Capcom. "MT" stands for "Multi-Thread", "Meta Tools" and "Multi-Target". While initially MT Framework was intended to power 2005's Dead Rising and 2006's Lost Planet: Extreme Condition only, Capcom later decided for their internal development divisions to adopt it as their default engine. As a result, the vast majority of their internally developed video games for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 platforms were created on it, including four new titles and three remastered ports of past titles in the Resident Evil series, Capcom's biggest franchise. The visuals of the first games powered by the engine were well received and MT Framework has also won a CEDEC award.
Throughout the years MT Framework received various updates, most significant of which was a major revision called MT Framework 2.0, first introduced with Lost Planet 2 in 2010. Additionally, two off-shoots of the engine have been made. MT Framework Lite targets the Wii and PlayStation 3 consoles and MT Framework Mobile powers games for the Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation Vita and iOS.
As of 2014, Capcom's stance on the future of the engine is that while it will continue to be used to create games for the seventh generation of video game consoles, smartphones and handhelds, Panta Rhei and the RE Engine, which is used to develop Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, are intended to be MT Framework's successors for developing games for the eighth generation of video game consoles.
Before the creation of MT Framework, Capcom's internal development teams were each using engines and tools of their own design, a process that was deemed inefficient. Thus, the decision to build an engine that would support the needs of all of Capcom's developers was made. At first MT Framework was being developed to be used in Dead Rising and Lost Planet: Extreme Condition only. Capcom evaluated the Unreal Engine 3 engine for adoption as their internal engine but decided against it due to some performance limitations and difficulties of getting technical support from its American developer, Epic Games, in Japan. As such, the decision to further develop MT Framework and extend its internal use was made.
MT Framework 1.x
Development of MT Framework had began in September 2004 based on the Onimusha 3 engine. The engine was built to use PC development tools and initially target the Xbox 360 system because of its similarity to the PC platform. In 2004 the project had started by just one programmer but in the following years and as they added support for more platforms more people joined in. Because of its PC development tools, video games can first be programmed on the PC and then adjusted to run on console hardware. MT framework supports multithreading techniques to take advantage of the multicore CPUs that are powering both the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 consoles as well as modern PCs.
Speaking about Lost Planet: Extreme Condition and its use of MT Framework, Capcom highlighted the following features supported by the engine. A light motion blur effect called "2.5D motion blur" (based on the "Stupid OpenGL Shader Tricks" presentation by Simon Green at the Game Developers Conference 2003) is supported to help smooth 30 fps games. Light-Space Perspective Shadow Maps, a form of shadow mapping, is used for the rendering of the shadows and a technique called Percentage Closer Filtering to smooth them. The engine also supports normal mapping, HDR rendering, soft particles, variable amounts of MSAA and a technique with which particles can be rendered at 1/4th of the full resolution of the image for the benefit of performance. Basic physics are handled by the integrated Havok middleware, while a custom physics engine handles character-local physics calculations such as cloth physics and inverse kinematics.
The first significant update to the engine was the release of the PC version of Lost Planet: Extreme Condition, which was the second PC game to support DirectX 10 and the first with a DirectX 10 demo. Ambient occlusion and parallax occlusion mapping support were added to the engine, and under DirectX 10 improved soft shadow rendering, and by the use of vertex shaders, less artifact-prone motion blur, fur shading and improved depth of field with a bokeh-like appearance. The two games on PC that followed Lost Planet: Extreme Condition - Devil May Cry 4 and Resident Evil 5 - also featured DirectX 10 support, but Capcom decided against using it to improve upon the visuals, thus making them look largely the same as the DirectX 9 versions. However, Resident Evil 5 under DirectX 10, was the first video game to be presented fully in stereoscopic 3D, including all of its cutscenes, and the first to be rated as "3D Vision Ready" by Nvidia. Later re-releases of the two games on PC removed DirectX 10 support.
MT Framework 2.x
A major update to the engine called MT Framework 2.0 began development in January 2008 and made its debut with the release of Lost Planet 2 in 2010. According to Capcom several parts of the engine were re-written from scratch and as a result the engine performs better on the PlayStation 3 compared to the previous version which was first built with the Xbox 360 in mind. Capcom highlighted the interactivity between characters and vegetation as a significant improvement but also noted because the game began development on the previous version of the engine it doesn't fully represent the capabilities of the new iteration. Capcom also said MT Framework 2.0 is able to hide the specifics of the hardware and the supported shader models from programmers, allowing them to write more platform agnostic code than before and reducing their burden. In Capcom's 2011 annual report, it was confirmed that 80% of MT Framework's development process is common between the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC platforms which reduced development costs. Lastly, Capcom made possible for the first time, for external contract studios that would partner with them to use the engine. The first externally developed game to use MT Framework 2.0 was Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds.
The PC version of Lost Planet 2 added support for DirectX 11 features such as tessellation, displacement mapping and the use of DirectCompute for soft body simulation and wave simulation. Later MT Framework 2.0 games released on PC were DirectX 9 only.
Another significant update was made for Dragon's Dogma, released in 2012. Previous MT Framework games were "stage-based" with each stage divided by a loading screen. Dragon's Dogma's levels are tens to hundreds times bigger and the structure of the game is open world meaning the only way they could make it work was by adapting the game engine to move in and out of memory portions of the game world, as needed. Another improvement is that the engine moved from using a forward renderer to a hybrid one that makes use of deferred lighting (also known as Light Pre-Pass). This made possible to support a 24 hour cycle and weather variation and an "infinite" amount of lights. Other changes include support for real-time variation of a character model and FXAA. Building on top of Dragon's Dogma updated technology, Resident Evil 6 added SSAO, and improved hair rendering (based on the "Light Scattering from Human Hair Fibers" paper presented at SIGGRAPH 2003) along with facial expressions and eye movement.
MT Framework Lite and MT Framework Mobile
In late October 2009, it was reported that Capcom was bringing MT Framework to Wii to reduce the development time and costs of developing Wii games separately. Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes was confirmed as the first game running on MT Framework Lite, a special version of the engine targeting the Wii and PlayStation 3 hardware. At E3 2010, Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition and Resident Evil: Revelations were announced as upcoming games for the Nintendo 3DS. In late September 2010, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D and Mega Man Legends 3 were also announced and later all four revealed to be running on MT Framework Mobile, a new version of the engine, based on MT Framework 2.0, and specifically designed for the Nintendo 3DS. Capcom noted that thanks to MT Framework Mobile Resident Evil: Revelations features a graphical pipeline that is almost identical to that of Resident Evil 5, supporting HDR rendering, self shadowing, normal mapping, color correction, gamma correction, depth of field, motion blur and anti-aliasing on the Nintendo 3DS hardware. In late January 2011, Capcom demonstrated the intro of Lost Planet 2 running on MT Framework Mobile on the "Next Generation Portable", later renamed to PlayStation Vita. The Vita version of Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 was the first MT Framework Mobile game to be released on the hardware. MT Framework Mobile's support for iOS was later also announced, and the first game to use the engine on the iPhone was the port of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies, released in 2014.
In an 2014 interview with Masaru Ijuin, an engineer behind MT Framework and the upcoming proprietary Capcom engine Panta Rhei, it was detailed that Capcom plans to move to the new engine starting with Deep Down but will continue the use of MT Framework for games developed for the seventh generation of consoles as well as MT Framework Mobile for handhelds and smartphones. He stated that "creators will have to start back at square one when they learn how [to] develop games using Panta Rhei" but the overall efficiency of development would increase more than it would if they had merely updated MT Framework. In June 2016, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was announced and revealed to be running on a new proprietary engine by Capcom named RE Engine. RE Engine was said that it, too, will power multiple upcoming Capcom games.
Games using MT Framework
Main engine (MTFW)
|Title||First release date||Engine type||Platform(s)||Notes|
|Dead Rising||2006/08/08||MT Framework 1.x||Xbox 360||Uses MT Framework 1.0|
|Lost Planet: Extreme Condition||2006/12/21||MT Framework 1.x||Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3||Xbox 360 uses MT Framework 1.1, Windows uses MT Framework 1.2|
|Devil May Cry 4||2008/01/31||MT Framework 1.x||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows||Uses MT Framework 1.3
|Resident Evil 5||2009/03/05||MT Framework 1.x||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows||Uses MT Framework 1.4
|Lost Planet 2||2010/05/11||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows||Uses MT Framework 2.0|
|Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds||2011/02/15||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360||Uses MT Framework 2.1|
|Resident Evil Code: Veronica X HD||2011/09/27||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360||The logo of MT Framework is displayed when the game is started|
|Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
(PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions)
|2011/11/15||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360||The box art mentions MT Framework, unlike the PlayStation Vita version which mentions MT Framework Mobile|
|Dragon's Dogma||2012/05/22||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows|||
|Resident Evil 6||2012/10/02||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows|||
(PlayStation 3 version)
|2012/11/22||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3||The box art mentions MT Framework, unlike the Nintendo 3DS version which mentions MT Framework Lite|
|Resident Evil: Revelations
(Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions)
|2013/05/21||MT Framework 2.x||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, Wii U and Xbox 360||The box art mentions MT Framework, unlike the PlayStation Vita version which mentions MT Framework Mobile|
|Sengoku Basara 4||2014/01/23||MT Framework 2.x||PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4|||
|Resident Evil HD Remaster||2014/11/27||MT Framework 2.x||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One||Confirmed on box art|
|Resident Evil: Revelations 2||2015/02/24||MT Framework 2.x||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One||The credits list the "MT Framework Development Team" for providing development support|
|Dragon's Dogma Online||2015/08/31||MT Framework 2.x||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4|||
|Resident Evil Zero HD Remaster||2016/01/19||MT Framework 2.x||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One||Confirmed on box art|
MT Framework Lite (MTFL) and MT Framework Mobile (MTFM)
|Title||First release date||Engine type||Platform(s)||Source|
|Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles||2009/11/17||MT Framework Lite||Wii, PlayStation 3|||
|Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes||2010/07/29||MT Framework Lite||Wii, PlayStation 3|||
|Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition||2011/02/26||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS|||
|Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D||2011/06/02||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS|||
|Nazo Waku Yakata||2011/08/04||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS|||
|Sengoku Basara 3 Utage||2011/11/10||MT Framework Lite||Wii, PlayStation 3|||
|Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate||2011/12/10||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS, Wii U||Confirmed on box art|
|Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
(PlayStation Vita version)
|2011/12/17||MT Framework Mobile||PlayStation Vita||Confirmed on box art|
|Resident Evil: Revelations||2012/01/26||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS|||
(Nintendo 3DS version)
|2012/11/22||MT Framework Lite?||Nintendo 3DS||Box art mentions MT Framework Lite instead of Mobile. It could be a mistake.|
|Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies||2013/07/25||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS, iOS||MT Framework Mobile confirmed on box art of the Nintendo 3DS version. Furthermore, in the credits of both versions the "MT Framework Development Team" is listed, with the iOS version crediting additional staff that worked on that version.|
|Monster Hunter 4||2013/09/14||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS||Confirmed on box art|
|Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate||2014/10/11||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS||Confirmed on box art|
|Dai Gyakuten Saiban: Naruhodō Ryūnosuke no Bōken||2015/07/09||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS||Confirmed on box art|
|Monster Hunter X||2015/11/28||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS||Confirmed on box art|
|Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Spirit of Justice||2016/06/09||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS||Confirmed on box art|
|Mega Man Legends 3||Cancelled||MT Framework Mobile||Nintendo 3DS|||
- Panta Rhei, one of MT Framework's successors
- Eddie Makuch (May 9, 2014). "Capcom lists its six "powerful" franchises -- Can you guess what they are?". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
- "MT Framework Multiplatform Game Development Environment Created by Capcom Receives Award". Capcom. September 11, 2008. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
- Christian Nutt (August 15, 2008). "Co-Op Creators: Resident Evil 5's Anpo and Takeuchi Tag-Team Interview". Gamasutra. UBM TechWeb. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "西川善司の3Dゲームファンのための「ロスト プラネット」グラフィックス講座。 Xbox 360グラフィックスここに極まる! 日本発の次世代技術の秘密とは?". GAME Watch (in Japanese). Impress Watch Corporation. January 31, 2007. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- Christian Nutt (December 12, 2007). "The Devil Laughs: A Chat With Capcom Producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi". Gamasutra. UBM TechWeb. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- Garret Romaine (September 28, 2009). "Sponsored Feature: Resident Evil 5 Takes Full Advantage of Intel Core i7 Processors". Gamasutra. UBM TechWeb. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "NVIDIA® And Capcom Introduce Lost Planet - The First Directx 10 Game Demo - NVIDIA". nvidia.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "DirectX 10 Benchmarking - Lost Planet: Extreme Condition - Legit Reviews". legitreviews.com. 15 May 2007. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "カプコン開発陣が明かす「ロスト プラネット」映像表現の内幕。独創的なビジュアルを生み出した技術と開発の手法に迫る". impress.co.jp (in Japanese). Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Beyond3D - CEDEC 2007: Capcom on Lost Planet Part II". beyond3d.com. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "3D Performance with Lost Planet Demo: DirectX 10 Benchmarks". archive.org. 31 July 2012. Archived from the original on July 31, 2012. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "Interview about Devil May Cry 4 - Devil May Cry 4, interview, DMC4, dmc4, capcom - PC Games Hardware". pcgameshardware.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Capcom Producer Masachika Kawata about Resident Evil 5 - Resident Evil, Capcom, Kawata, Producer, Interview - PC Games Hardware". pcgameshardware.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Devil May Cry 4 Performance - Introduction". legionhardware.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Resident Evil 5: PC vs. Xbox 360 and DirectX 9 vs. DirectX 10 - graphics comparison [Top article of July 2009] - Resident Evil 5, DirectX 10, DirectX 9, PC, Xbox 360, graphics, comparison - PC Games Hardware". pcgameshardware.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Image Quality: DirectX 9 Versus DirectX 10 - Resident Evil 5: Demo Performance Analyzed". tomshardware.co.uk. 14 September 2009. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Resident Evil 5". gamesindustry.biz. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "Devil May Cry 4 Special Edition versus Devil May Cry 4 - DirectX 10 Comparison Screenshots". dsogaming.com. 27 June 2015. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Resident Evil 5 Steam edition "ripped out" code needed for splitscreen mod". eurogamer.net. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- Tsujimoto, Haruhiro (March 31, 2012). "Annual Report 2012 - Our Strategy for Growth: Armed with “World-Class Development Capabilities” and “Leading Contents”, Capcom Aims to Maximize Profits through Opportunities in the Rapidly Changing Game Market" (PDF). Capcom. Retrieved April 15, 2016.
- "Capcom Talks MT Framework 2.0". andriasang.com. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "Capcom on 3DS MT Framework and Resident Evil Revelations". andriasang.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Lost Planet 2: DX9 vs. DX11 - Page 2". techgage.com. 16 August 2010. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- 株式会社インプレス (7 June 2012). "西川善司の3Dゲームファンのためのグラフィックス講座・E3特別編その1 MTフレームワーク2.0採用の「バイオハザード6」は進化したキャラクター表現に注目!". impress.co.jp (in Japanese). Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "How Dragon's Dogma Changed the MT Framework". capcom-unity.com. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "Face-Off: Resident Evil 6". eurogamer.net. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- "Light Scattering from Human Hair Fibers". cornell.edu. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Capcom Brings MT Framework to Wii". andriasang.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Capcom Makes Big 3DS Push". andriasang.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "The Mega Man Legends 3 Project: Eguchi's Take on the Bonne Mecha Event". capcom-unity.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "Lost Planet 2, Yakuza demonstrated on NGP". engadget.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- "CAPCOM - vol07.Masaru Ijuin (Developer Interview 2011)". capcom.co.jp. Retrieved 26 June 2016.
- Ijuin, Masaru (January 6, 2014). "Foundation for game creation at Capcom: "Panta Rhei" development engine for next-gen consoles and the potential it holds". Developer Interviews 2013 (Capcom). Capcom Investor Relations.
- "Famitsu Interview Reveals Resident Evil 7 is About 65 Percent Complete!". June 16, 2016. Retrieved June 27, 2016.
- "Face-Off: Devil May Cry 4: Special Edition". eurogamer.net. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
- Inc., Aetas. "「戦国BASARA4」はプレイヤーが"戦国時代をゼロから創る"――シリーズ「新章」の真意や新要素の魅力を開発陣に聞いてきた". 4gamer.net (in Japanese). Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- ""椿姫彩菜のゲームの話"第3回 カプコンの小林裕幸プロデューサーが語る『戦国BASARA』シリーズよもやま話とその未来 - スーパーコアゲーマーがクリエイターに突撃！ 椿姫彩菜のゲームの話". famitsu.com. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- Inc., Aetas. "シリーズ初の本格オンラインゲーム「Dragon's Dogma Online」インタビュー。どんな「オープンワールドアクション」を目指しているのか，開発陣に聞いた". 4gamer.net (in Japanese). Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- Nishimura, Zenji. "西川善司の3Dゲームファンのための「ロスト プラネット 2」グラフィックス講座（後編）" (in Japanese). Impress.co.jp.
- Inc., Aetas. ""もっと簡単"で"もっと楽しく"，"もっと誰でも遊べる"ものを目指して――「謎惑館 ～音の間に間に～」について，ディレクターの中井 実氏にいろいろ聞いてみた". 4gamer.net (in Japanese). Retrieved 25 June 2016.
- Eguchi, Masakazu (December 13, 2010). "The Mega Man Legends 3 Project: Eguchi's Take on the Bonne Mecha Event". Capcom. Retrieved April 7, 2016.