Chasm: The Rift Source Port?

I recently started wondering if anyone ever made a source port for Chasm: the Rift, so it could be played hi-res without being choppy as hell. Apparently there was a thing called OpenChasm, but I can't quite figure it out.

Has anyone else ever toyed with porting Chasm? If nothing else it might make it easier to get the rest of the resources for Doom/Quake modding.

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Impie said:

Apparently there was a thing called OpenChasm

That's the one I was going to mention, heh.

Alexey has been more active with making GZDoom works on Mac OS however, OpenChasm seems to have been neglected the last few years. At least there's been no commit to its GitHub repository since 2014.

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I remember playing Chasm back in the day, it was great! I would love to be able to play it in a source port.

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A very decent shooter with a strange engine, 3D elements in a 2.5D environment. Would also like to see it return.

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Gez said:

That's the one I was going to mention, heh.

Alexey has been more active with making GZDoom works on Mac OS however, OpenChasm seems to have been neglected the last few years. At least there's been no commit to its GitHub repository since 2014.

Any idea how to use it? There's only a couple binaries that appear to be peripheral tools, rather than a way to run the game.

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I don't think any official source was ever released, so I'd fully expect any "port" to be janky as hell anyway.

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Oooh, I loved this game! It also kind of scared me back in the day when I first played the demo.

I would love to play it again using a source-port. I don't touch DOSBox with a ten foot pole, let alone use it to emulate "3D" games...

If not that, then perhaps a total conversion using GZDoom would be nice (with Action Form's blessing, of course!).

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Impie said:

Any idea how to use it? There's only a couple binaries that appear to be peripheral tools, rather than a way to run the game.

I don't think it's in any way finished or even remotely playable; Alexey would have advertised it otherwise.

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I'd love a source. I still have the original disc that I bought when I was...what, 14?

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Hi, guys.

Recently ( in October 2016 ) i started investigation of game "Chasm - The Rift".
I already discover most of file formats of this game, wrote some utilities.

After that, i stared to make opensource reconstruction of this game. I called it "PanzerChasm".

I have already implemented:
* Map loading.
* Game process core.
* Shooting.
* Map scripts.
* Monsters (very stupid). Separation of their body parts.
* Sounds (but not fully).
* Netplay prototype. Seperate game modes for netplay still not implemented.
* Console, like in "Quake".

But, game is still not very playable, there are more to do:
* Player death.
* Save/load.
* Settings.
* A bunch of little things.

Thread on GameDev.ru (russian):
http://www.gamedev.ru/projects/forum/?id=221817

Project on Github:
https://github.com/Panzerschrek/Chasm-Reverse

Latest build is available here:
https://github.com/Panzerschrek/Chasm-Reverse/releases

Some images:






PS: Sorry for my bad English.

2 people like this

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You know it's kinda funny, there's no community at all for this game, but it seemed like it had potential.

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Chasm is one of those forgotten shooters from the 90's, I think it came out not long after Quake. It's far from perfect, but it's still a damn good game. Great enemy models, and you were able to dismember the monsters which was pretty impressive at the time.

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Piper Maru said:

Chasm is one of those forgotten shooters from the 90's, I think it came out not long after Quake.


yeah, it's pretty easy to tell how much quake influenced it. they look pretty similar.

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roadworx said:

yeah, it's pretty easy to tell how much quake influenced it. they look pretty similar.


Oh I totally agree, Chasm is definitely a Quake clone.

The soundtrack for this game is great as well.

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Piper Maru said:

Chasm is one of those forgotten shooters from the 90's, I think it came out not long after Quake. It's far from perfect, but it's still a damn good game. Great enemy models, and you were able to dismember the monsters which was pretty impressive at the time.


It apparently came out the same month as Quake 2 in the U.K.

Yeah it's a cool game, though dated even for the time of it's release (though it could run on very old computers as a result, perhaps the intention) that deserved more attention.

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Vermil said:

It apparently came out the same month as Quake 2 in the U.K.

Yeah it's a cool game, though dated even for the time of it's release (though it could run on very old computers as a result, perhaps the intention) that deserved more attention.


If I remember correctly, Chasm is not a true 3d game, I think it's a 2.5D game although it has 3d models in it.

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@Panzerschrek

Those screenshots look good! Did you base your code on an existing engine?

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Piper Maru said:

If I remember correctly, Chasm is not a true 3d game, I think it's a 2.5D game although it has 3d models in it.


Yeah, the level editor for it was essentially tiles like in Wolf 3D. Everything was at 90 degree angles, although it did have slopes for ceilings. It's been almost 16 years since I used the level editor for it, but it was very limited. You could only place so many tiles before the editor ran out of memory (think TimeSplitters on console, where you can only place so many things before the program shuts you down), and this was using a literal grid like in Wolf 3D, you chose your texture, put down a tile, I think it was 64x64 but I could be wrong. Height differences reminded me of ROTT but even more limited. You could place objects on tiles as steps, but it only allowed you to go half of the vertical distance up. So you could make half-steps that brought you up to 128, but you couldn't have rooms with tall ceilings.

I'm pretty sure I still have the disc for it somewhere, and I'd like to play it again as it was a pretty neat game. But as far as the engine goes, it was really, really basic, in a weird way. Even more basic than the ROTT engine, it feels like Wolf 3D.

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Jello said:

But as far as the engine goes, it was really, really basic, in a weird way. Even more basic than the ROTT engine, it feels like Wolf 3D.


why have such a basic engine when you're including true 3d models in your game? wtf?

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VGA said:

Those screenshots look good! Did you base your code on an existing engine?

No, i didn't use any existing engine. I wrote my own rendering code, using OpenGL.

Jello said:

I think it was 64x64 but I could be wrong.

Yes, game use 64x64 grid for maps. Most of map data stored in 64x64 tables - floors, ceilings, walls, items, models, lightmap.

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Nice! It's about time this game got some deserved love. I do have to admit that the level-design in Chasm is kind of trash, but it's undeniably fun to shoot off an enemy's limbs.

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Panzerschrek said:

No, i didn't use any existing engine. I wrote my own rendering code, using OpenGL.

Yes, game use 64x64 grid for maps. Most of map data stored in 64x64 tables - floors, ceilings, walls, items, models, lightmap.


I just re-installed it last night for shits and giggles, and it's really not a terrible game. I still had some fun shooting enemies heads off. There was a really fun moment where one of the rifle soldiers and one of the flying rocket soldiers were in the same room. The rocket soldier managed to shoot off both of the rifle soldiers arms, so when I walked back in the rifle guy was trying to headbutt the flying rocket guy.

Anyway, I have a question, and you're probably more knowledgeable. I was always under the impression that rooms could only be 90 degrees, however playing it again I noticed there were a couple, not many, I counted two, rooms that were circular. Do you have any idea how that's accomplished, if it's with tricks like when they used 3D models as angled support beams in a ceiling? Maybe just a diagonal model placed along the edge of a square tile?

The first time I noticed it, it was level 2, and there's an elevator in the middle near the beginning that has diagonal walls on the exterior. So I thought maybe it's because it was confined within a sector it could have been done using models placed in tiles, but later on, I think the Underground area in the Egypt levels, there's a room all by itself with diagonal walls.

If you have time to respond I'd appreciate it, I'm kind of interested in Chasm again. It was such a weird game, it was like 1992 and 1997 got together and had some weird deformed mutant baby. And the blurb on the box "Superb graphics and gameplay - a 3D shooter on the cutting edge." is so hilariously wrong. Reminds me of seeing "Doom is on the run from Rise of the Triad".

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Chasm was good shit. One of the few 90s shooters I've played *and* finish. Wish it could be reborn somehow.

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Jello said:

Anyway, I have a question, and you're probably more knowledgeable. I was always under the impression that rooms could only be 90 degrees, however playing it again I noticed there were a couple, not many, I counted two, rooms that were circular. Do you have any idea how that's accomplished, if it's with tricks like when they used 3D models as angled support beams in a ceiling? Maybe just a diagonal model placed along the edge of a square tile?


Actually, walls can be placed with any direction, not only along X or Y axis.
But such walls used rarely in original game.
Maybe because most of maps was made before this feature was added in engine, maybe such walls is too hard to draw. I don't know exactly why.

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I first played Chasm on one of those "1000 Games for Windows 95" discs, and forgot the name ever since. Rediscovered it when someone else mentioned it in another thread a few years ago. Been patiently waiting for a port ever since.

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Panzerschrek said:

Actually, walls can be placed with any direction, not only along X or Y axis.
But such walls used rarely in original game.
Maybe because most of maps was made before this feature was added in engine, maybe such walls is too hard to draw. I don't know exactly why.


Does this mean that a map-editor for Chasm could be a possibility somewhere in the future?

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I would really like someone to do an in-depth report on the engine, I find it incredibly perplexing that it apparently had some pretty strict limitation despite having fully polygonal elements...

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Agentbromsnor said:

Does this mean that a map-editor for Chasm could be a possibility somewhere in the future?


There was a map editor that came with the game.

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