CHAPEL HILL- Emergent Game Technologies is teaming up with HP to offer game developers a software-as-a-service suite for title development.

Called the Emergent Platform, the service is designed to help lower upfront costs and speed up title development.

Services will be offered on a “pay-as-you-go” basis. According to Emergent, the software-as-a-service offering is the first in the game development industry.

“Up until now, developers and publishers have had to sink huge sums of money into their infrastructure technologies before the game could earn a single dollar,” said Emergent Chief Executive Officer Geoffrey Selzer. “With our Software-as-a-Service business model, now they can tie their financial investments to the ‘stand-up,’ deployment and growth of a game, and manage their cash flow over the actual cycle of a game.”

Emergent is based in California but has a major center of operations in Chapel Hill. It acquired NDL, which was based in Chapel Hill, in 2005 and has steadily expanded the operation. NDL developed the Gamebryo game engine, which is one of the most widely used in the interactive game industry.

The partnership with HP was announced at a game developers conference in Austin, Texas. HP will offer the Emergent Platform as part of its “flexible computing services” offering that provides clients with access to scalable computer infrastructure.

“HP provides the dynamic scale, flexibility and mission-critical reliability that game studios expect and require to effectively serve their audiences,” Selzer said. “Together, Emergent and HP are unleashing the massive power of the Emergent Platform to help countless numbers of studios around the world bring creative new concepts to market more quickly and at significantly less cost and risk than ever before.”

Features of the HP-Emergent offering include:

• Emergent’s Metrics Element for Online Games
• The Emergent Dashboard for analytics and reporting
• HP Flexible Computing Services
• HP BladeSystem c-Class server blades and HP StorageWorks solutions
• AppLogic Grid computing layer from 3Tera
• E-commerce and consumer billing package from Aria Systems