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About Dragonsbrethren

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  1. Dragonsbrethren

    Is DOOM 64 the best looking N64 game?

    TWINE is an interesting case. It actually looks better on inaccurate emulators than on hardware. I'm hardly an expert, but from what I've been told, Eurocom didn't really optimize the game's assets for the hardware. The textures are incredible quality for the N64, 64x64 colored textures are all but unheard of, but for whatever reason, the level designers didn't apply them to surfaces at the correct scale, so they are always rendered mipmapped on hardware. They still look surprisingly good regardless, but the game could've actually looked a lot better! The engine also disables the N64's antialiasing, which is why it's so jagged looking compared to nearly every other N64 game. And those loading screens don't actually need to exist at all! It's also a sore spot for me because my dumb ass wanted the next Bond game and bought it instead of Perfect Dark, knowing full well it had a different developer. I didn't like the sci-fi aliens approach PD was taking...but it played so much better. TWINE was...passable and did a lot of cool things, but PD was the true sequel to GoldenEye.
  2. Dragonsbrethren

    Is DOOM 64 the best looking N64 game?

    GoldenEye's shadows are just a combination of the background mesh and vertex colors. If the designers wanted a hard shadow, they'd split the mesh there, and darken the coloration of the vertices for the shadowed area. For softer shadows, the same thing but with a smooth surface mesh. A third type of shadow and lighting effect is created like I described for the railings in the Dam screenshot: The railing texture, which has transparent areas, is alpha-blended over the ground texture, and again darkened by coloring the polygons' vertices. That allows for very detailed shadows using only a handful of polygons. The coloration of characters and Bond's gun is a property of the collision mesh, which can differ from the underlying map geometry, but rarely does. (There are a few examples of oddities like guards turning yellow on Surface's helipad that could have actually been avoided with edits to the collision mesh's coloration, meaning the colors were likely automatically generated from the background geometry.) I don't have an emulator up and running right now, but one of the best examples of how GoldenEye's devs were able to make detailed lighting is probably in Archives, the hallway near where you meet with Mishkin. A grayscale gradient texture is used to create beams of light coming from open windows. Hard edges are used on the floors and walls to create the shape of the windows, and then a metal lattice texture is alpha blended over that to create a shadow of the window frames. It's way more detailed than anything you would have seen in Quake, for example. There was no lighting pass on GoldenEye's environments, it was all modeled by hand, similar to sector-based lighting in Doom but obviously way more robust being true 3D meshes.
  3. Dragonsbrethren

    Is DOOM 64 the best looking N64 game?

    I remember playing GTA Vice City on the last CRT I owned, and even by that time it was clear they weren't designing for them anymore. The menu was unreadably small and blurry. It was what finally motivated me to go out and get a (terrible mid 2000's quality) LCD TV, because at least the text was sharp. That said there's so much bias against N64 games nowadays. GoldenEye as an example might look blurry and low resolution in those screenshots, but the environment quality was phenomenal at the time, to say nothing of using actual motion-captured character animations. That was the game you wanted on the N64, not stripped-down ports of PC games like Duke 64 or Quake 64. The game definitely has places where it suffers typical N64 problems, but the designers were also very good about maximizing texture quality by using large grayscale textures colored by vertex shading, and also splitting geometry to accommodate lots of small textures instead of wallpapering large ones. Lots of neat tricks like alpha blending the railing texture to create shadows in that Dam shot (and the baked lighting, in general, is done very well). Coincidentally, Doom 64 also takes advantage of high-res textures and vertex-based lighting, it just suffers from the limitations of the Doom map format and is way more constricted in the quality of environments that can be created.
  4. Dragonsbrethren

    Places to upload WADs

    Not to threadjack, but out of curiosity, does anyone know a good application/hosting service that would automatically upload a file when it has been modified? Something like GitHub for binaries. I've been thinking a lot about this lately. I love researching prerelease versions of games (I dare say I do more of this than actually playing games nowadays) and went absolutely nuts when Romero released the Doom 2 map sources and we got backups of the maps from months before release, but I'm the worst at keeping my own backups during development. I know they're just pwads and not anything official, but we obsess over individual mappers' styles at times and if a lot of us started using a service like this for our wads in development, it could be pretty cool to go back to intermediate versions and see what changes were made.
  5. Dragonsbrethren

    re-release Harmony

    Loading up the Xbox One port yesterday to pass a little time while waiting for another game to update and seeing Harmony on the release list was pretty neat, never expected to see it on this port because of the hi-res sprites. I haven't played this since it was originally released, forgot how tightly balanced the ammo was. I'm playing on HMP and it feels like I can't miss a single shot or I won't have enough ammo to deal with all the monsters. I even ran out of pistol ammo at one point.
  6. Dragonsbrethren

    Longest Doom break

    I don't remember how many years it was exactly, but I borrowed a copy of the PS1 version in '97 or '98 and didn't really play again until downloading a copy off some shady abandonware website in the 2000s, then I picked up the PC Collector's Edition. At the time, I felt like the PC version was a huge downgrade over what I had played on the PS1, but I loved the mods for it! I went through a weird Wolf3D phase after that, too, and I really can't even get into Wolfy nowadays. For some more fun: I thought Revenants were a custom Final Doom monster when I saw the first one in Plutonia...somehow, I had totally blanked it from my memory of the PS1 version, they're not exactly uncommon there, even showing up on MAP07, but I sure didn't remember them at the time. The arch-vile totally blew my mind but I hated it and was glad it got cut! I did warp to Plutonia MAP11 a lot to try beating that maze, though. The Icon of Sin was incredibly lame to me the first time I saw it (and the texturing in that level is so, so bad).
  7. Dragonsbrethren

    Doom Pictures Thread 2022

    Release Thread
  8. Last month my luck with avoiding COVID ran out and I ended up needing to take a week and a half off work while I fought it off. To pass the time while I was sick, I went back to Doom and started work on a new MegaWAD targeting PsyDoom. Unfortunately, I got better, and my free time is at a premium again. Most of the maps aren't really ready for release, but the third map (now moved to the MAP02 slot) had a really strong layout, so I polished it up and decided to release it standalone. I still hope to finish the WAD someday, but at least this won't rot on my HDD until then! Note that this map uses a few Final Doom exclusive textures, so it needs to be run with a Final Doom CD image. Also a few areas aren't fully detailed yet, I just wanted to get what I had out. cdepths2.zip
  9. Dragonsbrethren

    The Unity Port Thread - PS/Xbox/Switch/IOS/Android

    This bug isn't exclusive to PC, I've experienced it on the Xbox One as well.
  10. This is probably the best answer, since it would actually mix up the gameplay pretty good. You could bounce grenades around corners and things like that. I will say that I've never been a big fan of the Quake grenade launcher because it takes too long for the pipes to detonate if you don't land a direct hit, making it pretty much inferior to the rocket launcher in head on situations. I would rather see one like GoldenEye where it bounces off walls but detonates on contact with the floor.
  11. Dragonsbrethren

    PsyDoom 1.1.1 - PSX Doom port (reverse engineered) for PC

    Amazing update! I'm loving all the developer-friendly enhancements for loading and testing, too!
  12. Dragonsbrethren

    What is Your Job/Career?

    Retail store manager. Not the career I ever intended to have, but it's the one I fell into, and I'm pretty good at it.
  13. Had a friend who was super into the Mass Effect series, but every time he brought them over my place I just couldn't get into them. On a whim I bought the trilogy and ended up getting totally engrossed in those, then bought Andromeda and that was easily my favorite in the series gameplay-wise. It's a real shame internet crybabies got Andromeda's DLCs cancelled, I'd love to play what they had planned.