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February 11, 2016updated 04 Sep 2016 10:19pm

Amazon prepares for the walking dead with AWS zombie clause

News: Could the un-dead be a threat to cloud services?

By James Nunns

The world of cloud can sometimes be a little bit dry but AWS has added a little bit of humour to its latest terms and conditions.

In the release of Lumberyard, the company’s free-open source software for making videogames, the company put in a clause to say that the software isn’t intended for use with "life-critical or safety-critical systems," such as "nuclear facilities, manned spacecraft, or military use in connection with live combat."

However, users can ignore this in the event, "of the occurrence (certified by the United States Centers for Disease Control or successor body) of a widespread viral infection transmitted via bites or contact with bodily fluids that causes human corpses to reanimate and seek to consume living human flesh, blood, brain or nerve tissue and is likely to result in the fall of organized civilization," says clause 57.10.

While Zombies aren’t currently a threat to civilisation AWS has covered its bases, because who knows, if Lumberyard is the last remaining useful piece of cloud software that could somehow aid in the fight against the un-dead, then users shouldn’t be restricted in their use for fear of breaking the T&C’s.

Of course, AWS might know something that we don’t, it does after all offer machine learning and predictive analytics capabilities – perhaps it has stumbled upon evidence that points to an imminent zombie threat.

On a more serious note, Lumberyard offers visual technology that is based on CryEngine which is a package used by Game studios such as 2K, Bethesda and Sony Santa Monica.

In addition to a number of features including free access to its C++ source code, it also integrates with Twitch, a site for broadcasting games and interacting with viewers.

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The only catch is that Lumberyard materials may only be run on computer equipment owned and operated by you or your end users, or on AWS Services and: "may not be run on any Alternate Web Service and (b) your Lumberyard Project may not read data from or write data to any Alternate Web Service. "Alternate Web Service" means any non-AWS web service that is similar to or can act as a replacement for the services listed."

The Lumberyard SDK is available for download now, it requires being run on Windows 7 or higher, 8GB RAM and is a 10GB download.

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