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Scuba Steve

id Tech 5, Still Alive!

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Normally, nobody cares about anything relating to Apple Computers; however, Engadget reported that at this year's WWDC conference, id Software unveiled a few snippets of test material relating to their new engine. From the Engadget article...

"So the last couple of years at iD we've been working in secrecy on next-gen tech and a game for it... this is the first time we're showing anything we've done on it publicly." iD Tech 5... "What we've got here is the entire world with unique textures, 20GB of textures covering this track. They can go in and look at the world and, say, change the color of the mountaintop, or carve their name into the rock. They can change as much as they want on surfaces with no impact on the game."

So there you have it, the first information regarding id's new engine. Also there was some stuff about $600 cell phones and predatory cats but, like I said, nobody cares about Apple. In closing...

"20 gigs' worth of nonrepeating brown dirt/rock, sweet!" -Linguica

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Maybe instead of non-repetetive textures they should look into non-repetetive gameplay.

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Dr. Zin said:
Maybe instead of non-repetetive textures they should look into non-repetetive gameplay.

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I really think this megatexture thing is a dead end, just because (other than Id) nobody will want to take the time to actually create that much unique texture. Game development time is already enormous, and this can only make it longer. What would have been more interesting is some kind of algorithm to automatically tile textures in a way that doesn't look repetitive. Imagine creating 20 similar-looking dirt tiles, for example, and having the game engine automatically lay them out in a way that doesn't look repetitive. Or another good idea would be a system for doing nice-looking boundaries between different textures, so you don't get a straight line cut-off when going from grass to dirt. Something to make development quicker and easier, not this.

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I can't say this impresses me.

It's just another sign of game development going into the wrong direction. There's a good reason why I haven't enjoyed any game in recent years.

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fraggle said:
I really think this megatexture thing is a dead end, just because (other than Id) nobody will want to take the time to actually create that much unique texture. Game development time is already enormous, and this can only make it longer.

Maybe communities could take the time to produce complex and game friendly environments in the long run, taking years to improve levels, much like programs or operating systems are slowly improved through the years.

In any case it does make sense that developers should just concertrate on engines more than on games proper, as gameplay can indeed be developed by users, who have more time and manpower to do so.

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Graf Zahl said:

I can't say this impresses me.

It's just another sign of game development going into the wrong direction. There's a good reason why I haven't enjoyed any game in recent years.


Isn't that a bit hypocritical, considering you've been a member and heavy defender of the KDIZD project that is basically a Doom community paralell to what is going on in the game industry today?

Fraggle: Maybe so, but this is a tech demo they're showing. Basically saying "the sky is the limit". It's not necessary to use all unique textures. But it's possible, and as such that's a pretty great power to have.
What a lot of people complained about with Doom3 was the low texture resolutions.

Also, i'm not sure this is the same thing as megatextures. Megatextures is just a bigass texture that they slap on to a model. (atleast that's how the beta version of it in Doom3 works) that then loads just small bits of it. But they never actually mention that here. This might be something based on it, but I don't think it's really the same thing.

Id never actually developed the Megatexture. Carmack just started the work on it, and then Splash Damage developed it for ET:QW. So it's not like Id are the only ones intrested in using it.

I find this stuff very intresting, and while it's not ensuring better games really, I don't think it's any reason to start nagging about how much id's next game is gonna suck, just because they have (as we expected) new impressive technology to go with it. Specially since we don't know anything about it yet.

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kristus said:

Isn't that a bit hypocritical, considering you've been a member and heavy defender of the KDIZD project that is basically a Doom community paralell to what is going on in the game industry today?


In what way? If I had thought for a minute that KDiZD is what modern games have become I wouldn't have participated. Detail is not everything. KDiZD has a lot of detail - but it's not its sole focus as with modern games that are sold through screenshots that look impressive.



I find this stuff very intresting, and while it's not ensuring better games really, I don't think it's any reason to start nagging about how much id's next game is gonna suck, just because they have (as we expected) new impressive technology to go with it. Specially since we don't know anything about it yet.


The problem with this - as with all new technologies is that it eats the resources that are better invested into gameplay. But it rather seems that when all the bells and whistles are done there is nothing left that could be filled with more than endless linear strings of rooms that have nothing to offer but interesting visuals.

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I'm getting my expectations up. With megatextures they could make planet-sized worlds for games. I'd like this to appear for ZDoom or GZDoom some day, and use it to remake/reinterpret Doom 2: Hell on Earth and The Plutonia Experiment, using the whole spheroid Earth as MAP01.

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Graf: How about you actually listen to what Carmack has to say about it before shooting your mouth off about how it's eating away resources better spent on game play.
This bit in particular: "And we literary got this together in the last 10 days."

And yes, KDIZD is basically just a 2+ year effort of adding gimmicks and detail to Episode1.

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I really don't understand this community sometimes. We're not even seeing a real game here and already we're complaining about how much it will suck. :p

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kristus said:

And yes, KDIZD is basically just a 2+ year effort of adding gimmicks and detail to Episode1.



If that is what you think I don't care about your opinion anymore - because that's *NOT* what KDiZD is.

Snarboo said:

I really don't understand this community sometimes. We're not even seeing a real game here and already we're complaining about how much it will suck. :p


It's just a technology. But some people seem to think that it's the holy grail for future game development and again neglect the one thing that has been plaguing the industry for far too long: Lack of good long-term gameplay. Used correctly this might be nice but due to the past track record I am very skeptical that it might happen.

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I'm not jaded enough to say new engine tech is dooming this industry to more unoriginal games. The problem is not usually one of technology, but a mixture of design philosophies and business culture. At the extreme end of things, games are not about fun anymore, but pushing a product to make money. You hear more about graphics and franchises these days than gameplay or mechanics. That's the problem right there. Engine tech is just the backbone of a game, and if a lazy developer licenses it to make a shoddy game, you end up with an inferior product.

Frankly, I'd love to see the FPS genre enter the casual market. There, graphics are not the most important issue. You could "license" the Doom engine or create a similar one and pump out a good FPS in about 6 months. FPS games haven't really advanced very far from Duke Nukem 3D anyway. The casual market would be perfect for projects like the Foreverhood, IMO, asumming it became commercial.

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Snarboo said:
The problem is not usually one of technology, but a mixture of design philosophies and business culture.

In a broad sense, it seems more like a perspective clash between the business and the "gaming community" (modders and intensive users). Such a clash should be expected, in my opinion, as the two as closely associated but work differently and often have different needs or preferences.

You could "license" the Doom engine or create a similar one and pump out a good FPS in about 6 months. FPS games haven't really advanced very far from Duke Nukem 3D anyway. The casual market would be perfect for projects like the Foreverhood, IMO, asumming it became commercial.

If you make a commercial product out of a mod, it either doesn't sell enough, or becomes more like what we criticise as a commercial game.

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Graf Zahl said:

If that is what you think I don't care about your opinion anymore - because that's *NOT* what KDiZD is.


Well, how about you enlighten me then?

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kristus said:
Well, how about you enlighten me then?

You shouldn't talk to Graf Zahl anymore; he don't love you no more!

Seriously, though, take the argument to one of the KDiZD threads, if anything.

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I'll reserve my judgement until I can see better quality imagery.

fraggle said:

Imagine creating 20 similar-looking dirt tiles, for example, and having the game engine automatically lay them out in a way that doesn't look repetitive.


This is a nice idea, though.

fraggle said:

Or another good idea would be a system for doing nice-looking boundaries between different textures, so you don't get a straight line cut-off when going from grass to dirt.


The Source engine already has this. You can blend textures together using a mask, which is pretty quick and easy to use.

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Myk: I probably should, but it's actually connected to the discussion at hand here IMO.
Not that I have any reason to drag it out longer than actually having an answer from Graf.

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kristus said: Well, how about you enlighten me then?

It's enhanced difficulty and cohesion to an old episode of Doom 1, without blocking Player's actions as sellout games do. There isn't that much scripting, is it? I haven't watched any of the hype, so I'm rather positive about all this.

I could see how they worked on it. They took an E1 map, they detailed it as much as ZDoom could make, they added areas where they thought would be at least interesting to fit, then they made the quality test.

In my view, there's nothing wrong (except maybe legality, sometimes) when enhancing an already made object. In fact, as ports are for Doom.exe, MP3 remixes for MIDIs, so's KDiZD for doom1.wad, in some ways. Like an upgrade. As of that hype I've been reading about, then anyone can scream about his tallent, but he/she can scream everything anytime.

Back on topic

Megatextures? On the comercial side, we'll probably see tons of MMORPGs, and FPS spent on the battlefront, so goodbye labyrinths, mazes and dungeons :(

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Megatextures is just a bigass texture that they slap on to a model. (atleast that's how the beta version of it in Doom3 works) that then loads just small bits of it.


Bah, Doomers have been doing that to get around the switch texture restrictions for years!

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I think it's different in ET:QW though. I believe it's something like Vertex paint being used, and a few different megatextures are then applied on the world.
So you draw with a paint tool where you want roads and whatever, and the game adjust accordingly with Material definitions, like decals and footstepsounds etc.

So, basically once you made the textures, building the worlds is a cakewalk.

That's how I've understood it that is. We'll see when it's released. :)

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No kristus. Technology is evil and doom and other ancient games are the only ones that are fun. Oh and kdizd is not about gimmicks and overblown random "detail" on walls. It's about rebuilding episode 1 into a much more fun and consistent experience. It's more doom than e1 itself!

Anyway. Megatexture is a really interesting next step. I see great potential for a seamless, high-fidelity gaming world.

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Its been said that the next big advancements in the FPS genre will be large scale multilayer projects. This may be the first step to it (although 20 gigs of texture data seems like a pretty flashy biz number thats being thrown around right now) with developing large scale worlds for the player to travel that are visually engaging.

As a whole, the FPS genre hasn't seen any real changes to its basic formula since Half-life introduced the narrative adventure. Perhaps a huge MMO FPS Deathmatch or team basted adventure (at least as part of the games component) would be something worth waiting to see. I feel pretty confident that if anyones going to advance the FPS genre, its going to be either Id or Valve, and valve seems to be glued to the half-life world for the most part. Id could, with this new title, be making the next big advancement with largescale worlds, provided its gameplay consists of something more than large scale key and switch hunts with monster closets.

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shaviro: Heh

skadoomer: Well, there's not really much you can do and still call it a shooter. There's been many First person games that have taken the formula to much more intresting (IMO) heights than that of Half Life (which wasn't that innovative really, since there had been games prior to it that had done the same thing and more)

System Shock, Deus Ex, Strife, The Elder scrolls, Thief, Midwinter, Battlefield, all these game (series) are First person games that are more or less shooters. But with a lot of other things included, some with focus shifted away from the Shooting part.I'd say that they are the evolved FPS genre, and then there's the games that stick to the core of FPS, and they are basically getting a lot of flak for it.

People should really decide what it is they want to play and play that. Would mean a lot less bitching.

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