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id: User Content "Not a Huge Consideration"

There's a Q&A with Matt Hooper on Next Generation (thanks Computer and Video Games) talking about Rage, Tech5, and other areas of interest about id Software. One point seems particularly interesting given one of the cornerstones of id's past successes has been support of user-generated content. While acknowledging this has an appeal, Matt indicates that support for such content is not a high priority for them in Rage:

What are your thoughts on user-created content?
As a game player, I love it. But that doesn’t mean at the same time I can’t love a BioShock or a Call of Duty 4. You can have a focused game, and do that really well. I think that’s the important thing – doing something really well. What the other games mentioned do as far as user created content, and just on that side of things, it’s like a different focus. I think there can be a separation, almost like movie genres. It’s okay to make a comedy, or a really hardcore, serious documentary. I think there are different fits.

For us personally, our biggest goal is – you can see it right now – we’re pushing on the fidelity, visually. We’re also pushing on the gameplay fidelity. Those two things are huge. For us, we’re doing things that we’ve never done before. That’s already a lot of eggs in the basket. As far as user-generated content, it’s not a huge consideration for us right now.

id games have always had mods, but what Spore and LittleBigPlanet have done is make it automatic, and networked. You can get other people’s creatures, without doing anything at all. Have you ever thought about automatically connected maps and a user ranking system for maps in Rage?
Yeah, we thought about all of that, but I can’t say we’ve specifically implemented it right now. Again, we’re concentrating more on just making a great game with this new tech. But those conversations happen all the time.

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71 Replies. 4 pages. Viewing page 1.
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71. Re: No subject Jun 26, 2008, 04:18 Pedle Zelnip
 
So basically it just comes down to a "NO U!" but in slightly fancier words. You haven't said what's wrong with the evidence, just that you refuse to accept it. Fantastic, this has gotten nowhere.

At least other people came in who challenged what I said instead of just running away screaming "LALALALA IW SAID SO I'M NOT LISTENING TO YOU" like you are.

Actually, I did comment on some of the reasons why I didn't accept your evidence. Maybe if you had read "a damn word" of my post you might've caught that.

I didn't see the point in regurgitating what I (and others) have said before, which was why my post was just a "I don't accept the evidence".

PZ
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Reading: Nothing yet, planning on reading Isaac Asimov's "The Robots of Dawn" shortly
 
PZ
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70. Re: No subject Jun 25, 2008, 22:39 Kash
 
CoD4 is a heavily modified Q3 tech. there was an article by a infinity ward employee stating that exact thing.
If it's the article I read, they were talking about CoD2, not CoD4. Do you have a link to one that mentions CoD4 in a similar context? (btw I'm not going "Guh duh link or it's BS!!" I honestly want to read it.)

 
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69. Re: ... Jun 25, 2008, 21:16 Kash
 
No developer would ever lie, then? Those HL2 E3 scenes WERE all dynamic and not scripted!

LOL, I'll never say to blindly trust a dev's word I've been around WAY too long for that.

http://www.securityfocus.com/archive/1/493584
I guess that's wrong about CoD4's link to Q3 too?

I read the bugs reported at the link you posted. There's two bugs, A and B.

B doesn't seem to be related to Q3. At least, the bug report says it was only a problem in previous CoDs. If it was new to previous CoD games and not in Q3, that does not suggest a Q3 -> CoD tie.

The A bug only says that there was a function named "va" in the Q3 source, and that a similar or perhaps the same function with a much smaller static buffer exists in CoD2 and CoD4.

There's two sides to this. If it IS the exact same function, it's a trivially simple one - just the sort of thing you're likely to keep around from engine to engine even if the other 99.99999% of it has been rewritten. Seriously, it's like 10 lines of code, just a wrapper around a call to vsprintf in the C library.

Even if they did rewrite it (and I wouldn't have if I was them, it's trivially simple), they obviously have a lot of coders familiar with the Q3 code base. They would be remiss if they arbitrarily named it something different if it did the same thing as a function they were already used to.

Put another way, I've written several vector math libraries from scratch. They all contain a function named Vec3Add(). None of them were copied out of the Q3 source code

My perspective as a programmer is that it is easy to make assumptions based on seeing common names or protocols. People will keep similar functionality named similar or the same things, even across a complete rewrite. I'm not saying CoD4 is NOT heavily Q3 based or whatever, I am just suggesting that based on my experience we'd really need to see the source code to decide for sure how much it shares.

 
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68. Re: No subject Jun 25, 2008, 16:04 sponge
 
Just to you. The rest of us stopped caring when you went off the deep end yesterday.

Really quite sad, someone disagrees with you and provides reason to back it up, and you just copout and blame it on me. Funny, if no one cared, how'd this get up to 70 posts? Why don't you add me to your troll script, too!

Carmack's is a long-time programmer as well as a director and he talks in blogs and interviews about the nuts and bolts of EVERY technical aspect of hardware, software, drivers, API's, you name it. So, he clearly knows his shit. So for whatever reason Doom 3 failed as an engine, Carmack bears some heavy blame. I'd like to see him succeed with the next engine because he is quite talented.

Honestly, I don't really consider the D3 engine a failure, at least on all fronts. On a marketing/licensing front, yea, they got blown away by Source and Unreal. In the case of Source and UE2 engines, it was arguably the last generation engine of the BSP-style, baked-in-the-map lighting, 'old'-generation engine. It's the perfection of what 3D engine development brought us from 1994 to 2003 or whenever.

D3 was the first engine that took some different core design decisions, namely the unified lighting model. Textures were smaller, but featured more layers, and more passes per surface. Stuff like the dynamic shadows are seen in almost every game now, but weren't all that common before the last few years. Although for the moment it seems pre-calculted lighting and dynamic shadows are the way games are going-- see Quake Wars for an example of this on the D3 engine, and just about any modern game that has shadows.

It came down to old vs new, basically. The tools also arguably hurt the id Tech 4 engine. Rage & id Tech 5 seem to be correcting it, but that remains to be seen.

Going down the future, I'd expect engines to get away from the concepts that drive the Source engine, and move more towards what id has created, although a lot will be borrowed from all of the major engines.

 
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67. No subject Jun 25, 2008, 11:54 dryden555
 
Dagok says "Why do people keep making statements as if Carmack is the designer on id's games? He is their Technical Director. I'm sure he has his say on things, just like the rest of the team does, but it is a TEAM, Carmack isn't calling all the design shots, nor is he soley responsible for the success or failure of their games."

Yes and no. Carmack's is a long-time programmer as well as a director and he talks in blogs and interviews about the nuts and bolts of EVERY technical aspect of hardware, software, drivers, API's, you name it. So, he clearly knows his shit. So for whatever reason Doom 3 failed as an engine, Carmack bears some heavy blame. I'd like to see him succeed with the next engine because he is quite talented.

 
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66. Re: ... Jun 25, 2008, 11:44 Muscular Beaver
 
Geez, I really dont understand why you find it so hard to believe what hes saying. As he said, this smells like double standard. Either you guys are CoD4 fanboys or you simply cant accept that you might be wrong. Or both.  
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65. Re: ... Jun 25, 2008, 07:50 nin
 
This is rapidly approaching absurd.

Just to you. The rest of us stopped caring when you went off the deep end yesterday.



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64. Re: ... Jun 25, 2008, 01:57 sponge
 
There are two sides - one is the developer stating it is a proprietary engine; the other is you, a random person on the internet, saying it isn't. Is it really surprising that people disagree with you?

No developer would ever lie, then? Those HL2 E3 scenes WERE all dynamic and not scripted! Piracy really IS killing the PC industry! Duke Nukem Forever WILL be out in 2002! Limbo of the Lost wouldn't steal other people's art either! EA will continue to support (latest game)!

http://www.securityfocus.com/archive/1/493584
I guess that's wrong about CoD4's link to Q3 too? Most of you idiots saying I'm wrong probably can't even understand what they're saying in that text, but I'm sure there will be some dumb remark to it anyway! Maybe another 5 word IGN marketing interview will do it!

This is rapidly approaching absurd. IW may think their engine is different enough that they don't want to call it the Q3 engine publicly. Hell, I wouldn't want to either since people will interpret that as LOL GAME ON A 9 YEAR OLD ENGINE but I love how people here just all of the sudden take IW for their word like it's the Holy Gospel, when every other thread features every last person saying the game developers are morons, they don't know what they're doing, they're all full of shit, and so on. Double standard much?

This comment was edited on Jun 25, 02:02.
 
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63. ... Jun 25, 2008, 00:08 theyarecomingforyou
 
So basically it just comes down to a "NO U!" but in slightly fancier words. You haven't said what's wrong with the evidence, just that you refuse to accept it. Fantastic, this has gotten nowhere.
There are two sides - one is the developer stating it is a proprietary engine; the other is you, a random person on the internet, saying it isn't. Is it really surprising that people disagree with you?

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62. Re: No subject Jun 24, 2008, 23:24 manic half
 
CoD4 is a heavily modified Q3 tech. there was an article by a infinity ward employee stating that exact thing.

it also went on to explain the only reason they say things like 'built from the ground up' is apparently the marketing people think we like to hear that.

i haven't read the whole argument going on in the thread but some of you will just have to accept sponge 0wned you and move on.

 
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61. Re: No subject Jun 24, 2008, 21:46 sponge
 
and I still disagree entirely with everything you said (that the CoD4 engine isn't proprietary), as I do not accept any of the "evidence" you give to support the claim.

So basically it just comes down to a "NO U!" but in slightly fancier words. You haven't said what's wrong with the evidence, just that you refuse to accept it. Fantastic, this has gotten nowhere.

At least other people came in who challenged what I said instead of just running away screaming "LALALALA IW SAID SO I'M NOT LISTENING TO YOU" like you are.

 
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60. ... Jun 24, 2008, 21:45 theyarecomingforyou
 
Like what? Make an actual game?

Ooohhh burnnnnn!
lmao

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59. Hmmmm Jun 24, 2008, 21:36 Creston
 
You can have a focused game, and do that really well

By you, you mean "other developers?"

I think there are different fits.

Yes. Your fit has ALWAYS been user content and multiplayer. ALWAYS. It's never been anything else. Abandoning 50% of your 'fit' doesn't sound like a smart idea to me.

we’re pushing on the fidelity, visually

This is not English.

We’re also pushing on the gameplay fidelity

What the hell is gameplay fidelity? What the fuck does this even mean?

For us, we’re doing things that we’ve never done before

Like what? Make an actual game?

Ooohhh burnnnnn!

Anyways, if id is specifically ignoring user generated content, that's going to bite them in the ass big time. Farewell John Carmack, it's like we hardly knew ye.

Be sure to blame the PIRATES when your tech demo game doesn't sell, and be sure to ignore anyone asking you if you feel that the fact you're ignoring your core business might have anything to do with your shitty sales. Then get a wild look in your eye and yell "PIRRAAATTTEESSS!!!! AYYEEEEE!" really loudly. (note : AYYEEEEE part optional.)

Creston

This comment was edited on Jun 24, 21:38.
 
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58. Re: No subject Jun 24, 2008, 21:16 Pedle Zelnip
 
Please point out any quote that mentioned a graphics engine? nin's original post said nothing about graphics. I said nothing about graphics.

The fact that you didn't even bother to read a damn word I said shows me that I really shouldn't bother responding. But I've never been known as someone who listens to what I SHOULD do. Go back and read my post, and read what I was responding to, and then reply if you still disagree. The quote was about engine, not graphics engine, and I said Quake3, not Doom3.

I don't give two shits what some developer says, as the box and the evidence says differently. I also specifically pointed out that CoD4 using the Doom3 graphics engine was an ignorant statement, but yet it was completely ignored like it never happened.

These comment threads are becoming increasingly lame to be a part of. It's simply a circle-jerk of wrong information and some sort of PC vs console conspiracy nowadays.

It's one thing when a message board says something uninformed (CoD4 is Doom3 engine) but it's another when the developer itself spreads a bald-faced lie.
It's one thing when a message board says something uninformed (CoD4 is Doom3 engine) but it's another when the developer itself spreads a bald-faced lie.
It's one thing when a message board says something uninformed (CoD4 is Doom3 engine) but it's another when the developer itself spreads a bald-faced lie.

Maybe you'll see it this time.

Wow, I thought my flame-retardant suit was good, but you blew it right off. Anybody else notice the irony in the statement:

These comment threads are becoming increasingly lame to be a part of. It's simply a circle-jerk of wrong information .....

At any rate, I'll admit my mistake, I misunderstood your post due to the context it appeared in to imply that CoD4 was Doom3 engine. I certainly did read more than "a damn word" you said though, and I still disagree entirely with everything you said (that the CoD4 engine isn't proprietary), as I do not accept any of the "evidence" you give to support the claim.

PZ
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Reading: Nothing yet, planning on reading Isaac Asimov's "The Robots of Dawn" shortly
 
PZ
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57. No subject Jun 24, 2008, 20:54 space captain
 
Doom 3 sucked balls, id - hope your next one is better

we’re pushing on the fidelity, visually. We’re also pushing on the gameplay fidelity. Those two things are huge. For us, we’re doing things that we’ve never done before.

yawn. can we drop the meaningless hype platitudes? this kind of shit is fucking boiler plate these days

at least he didnt say "we are doing things that have never been done before by anyone"
 
Go forth, and kill!
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56. Re: ... Jun 24, 2008, 19:38 sponge
 
I'm fairly sure that CoD4 uses a heavily modified version of the Build engine.

Maybe, but it doesn't have jetpacks and spinfusers and only 2.5 dimensions, which means anyone who plays it is probably just an intellectual console midget.

 
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55. Re: ... Jun 24, 2008, 19:02 Jerykk
 
I'm fairly sure that CoD4 uses a heavily modified version of the Build engine.

 
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54. Re: ... Jun 24, 2008, 18:19 sponge
 
On some level this is all semantics. What do you mean when you say "engine?"

I mean that IW bought a license to id Tech 3 (aka the Q3 engine), and have used it in 1, 2, and 4. I'd say the rendering subsystem is beneath the engine as a whole. There's also the networking subsystem, input subsystem, etc. The gameplay, AI, and scripting are all in a level above the engine if you look at an entire game broken down into parts.

I don't know if I'd call the master browser protocol a fundamental thing or not - at some point given how many games were written to Quake 3's specs that set of commands becomes a de facto standard.

It's only a de facto standard beneath games that use or are based off the Quake engines through their lineage. Gamespy, for example, uses some completely strange and fucked up protocol that's not even remotely related, and is used in many different games. However, you can always spot a Q3 game by looking for a query with 4 null bytes and then getStatus, with a \ delimited key/value dictionary being returned.

Anyway, I think we fundamentally agree on the major points and are really arguing semantics. We draw different lines about what "new engine" means, but I think a lot of that is because all the terms are overloaded to the point of implosion.

Indeed, I know one programmer who cringes everytime someone uses the term "netcode", but it's good to get what we specifically mean out there.

This comment was edited on Jun 24, 18:24.
 
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53. Re: ... Jun 24, 2008, 18:11 sponge
 
BTW, I am not disagreeing that CoD was originally based on Quake 3, but given how far their games have evolved from CoD1 -> CoD4 I find it pretty unlikely that anything of great significance remains. I'd be very curious to compare how much is left in IW's games vs. (say) Source.

Fair enough point about the Gamebryo engine. I'm just trying to draw comparisons to other games that I know of offhand.

I can tell you that the Source leak contained copy and paste code from the integrating Havok into Q1 tutorial, but this is probably getting into dubious legality of discussion. As for IW's games vs Q3, the only thing we can go by is what we're physically able to see, stuff like server protocols, game output. I don't really expect IW to change stuff like that because there's really no purpose for them to, compared to stuff like the renderer which is what everyone will see and care about. And if they ever came out and say something like "based on the Q3 engine!" it would probably scare away people because they think it's old.

 
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52. Re: ... Jun 24, 2008, 18:11 Kash
 
BTW, I'm told by someone in IRC that they also claimed CoD2 was a proprietary engine, even though you could find references to Quake 3 in the exe file, and OpenGL error messages despite it being a Direct3D game. So this wouldn't be the first time IW is playing loose with definitions as it pertains to their engine.
On some level this is all semantics. What do you mean when you say "engine?" In the not too distant past, engine meant "rendering engine". If you extend that to include gameplay and other asset concepts, the AI and scripting systems are totally different in CoD2 vs. Quake 3 (which I know from working on mods for both games.)

I don't know if I'd call the master browser protocol a fundamental thing or not - at some point given how many games were written to Quake 3's specs that set of commands becomes a de facto standard.

Anyway, I think we fundamentally agree on the major points and are really arguing semantics. We draw different lines about what "new engine" means, but I think a lot of that is because all the terms are overloaded to the point of implosion.

 
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