Carmack on DOOM 3

John Carmack Speaks on Doom 3 on GameSpot has a couple of tidbits gleaned from a talk given by id's lead programmer, saying the ability to save the game anywhere on a level is being reexamined, that human characters in the game will be animated with the assistance of motion capture (while most of the monsters will still be hand-animated), and he is struggling with the decision over whether to allow shadows to be turned off in the game, since they are so important to the drama, but they also represent half the engine's rendering efforts. There is also another article on Carmack's talk on GameSpy.
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121 Replies. 7 pages. Viewing page 5.
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41.
 
Re: Save games
May 15, 2003, 15:33
41.
Re: Save games May 15, 2003, 15:33
May 15, 2003, 15:33
 
Gee, the save vs. no-save argument, I've never seen this before...wait, yes I have.


The only thing to consider is this:

-When games come out with save option, there is no outcry of "oh no, why is there a save option! The game is ruined!"

-When games come out with no save option, there is an outcry against it.


Just put the damn save option in and have done with it. Someone will make a trainer anyway.

40.
 
Re: Save games
May 15, 2003, 15:22
40.
Re: Save games May 15, 2003, 15:22
May 15, 2003, 15:22
 
Pyro, I don't think you properly explained Angband.

Angband et al still let you save at any time, you just couldn't save and then keep playing. You did NOT have to find "The Temple of Saving" or whatever. Instead, you could only save when you were exiting the game.

The difference between Angband and doom, however, is that no matter how cool Doom will or won't be, the levels will basically be the same everytime (where Angband was random).

Imagine having to start the how game over each time, and have it play EXACTLY the same way. That would get boring quick...

39.
 
Re: So let me get this straight ...
May 15, 2003, 15:16
39.
Re: So let me get this straight ... May 15, 2003, 15:16
May 15, 2003, 15:16
 
Many spend $10 on a 2 hour movie. That's $5 an hour for entertainment.

Honestly, I can't stand 80-hour games. That's why I hate RPG's, especially menu-based RPG's, so boring. I have a life, I don't have time to spend 80-hours on one game.

That's just my personal preferences, but I can see where if you still live with your parents/are a student, that you have time to spend it on an 80-hour game.

38.
 
Re:
May 15, 2003, 15:16
38.
Re: May 15, 2003, 15:16
May 15, 2003, 15:16
 
The Dude, you made a number of points where valve is supposedly over id, and then u say that they will include shadows by september,.. um 4 months is not a lot of time to go back in and add a major feature, especially as now they should be working on game balance and finishing it up.
The engine already has pixel shaders implemented. It was demonstrated in the first part of the nine-part demo.

Think films here people. You dont compare Aliens to Lethal Weapon, but thats really what your doing.
You're forgetting something, though. Their basic plots are both a The Thing sort of horror-scifi. While Doom focuses more on the horror and Half Life focuses more on the sci fi, they're essentially both about posessed zombies invading a human-occupied planet.
It's more similar to Aliens and Predator. While they can both be considered horror and sci fi, Aliens is more often equated with horror and Predator is more often equated with sci fi.

Also yes they do have a skeletal system, however they dont use a skin system, so u get character clipping. DOOM3 does.
Actually, Half Life 2 uses a muscle system with its skeletal animation, which makes the animations more detailed and believable.
And unless I'm mistaken, clipping has to do with collision programming, not the animation system. I've only seen clipping problems in the HL2 media twice, and they were fairly minor. It would appear to me that those are bugs, not inherent of the engine.

Both have their pros and cons, nothing is perfect and no matter which one u rave about it will still have its flaws.
It would seem that Half Life 2 doesn't have many flaws.

Personnally i like to save often, thats a desicion that we shall have to wait and see on.
It's not just a matter of what we individually like. Intentionally limiting savegames is widely known as a gameplay parlor trick to artificially make the game last longer.


This comment was edited on May 15, 15:32.
Xombie x0mbie x0mb|e Xombie
37.
 
No subject
May 15, 2003, 15:04
37.
No subject May 15, 2003, 15:04
May 15, 2003, 15:04
 
I cant believe you just compared HL2 to lethal weapon

36.
 
Re:
May 15, 2003, 14:23
36.
Re: May 15, 2003, 14:23
May 15, 2003, 14:23
 
These threads are always amusing.

Half Life 2 VS DOOM 3

hmm i think a lot of you are missing the point about the differences.

HL2 is an engrossing story set accross a large variety of places, its scary in places, and action filled in others.

DOOM3 on the other hand is ment to be a Scary assed experiance. somethign that will grip you and scare you all the way down.

Think films here people. You dont compare Aliens to Lethal Weapon, but thats really what your doing.

The Dude, you made a number of points where valve is supposedly over id, and then u say that they will include shadows by september,.. um 4 months is not a lot of time to go back in and add a major feature, especially as now they should be working on game balance and finishing it up.

Also yes they do have a skeletal system, however they dont use a skin system, so u get character clipping. DOOM3 does.

Both have their pros and cons, nothing is perfect and no matter which one u rave about it will still have its flaws.

Personnally i like to save often, thats a desicion that we shall have to wait and see on.

Im personnally going to buy both. Both single player experiances promise to be excelent for different reasons, and the multi player will be different too. (Shadows being a real give away in DM will be very intresting especially at the slower pace)

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35.
 
Save games
May 15, 2003, 13:32
35.
Save games May 15, 2003, 13:32
May 15, 2003, 13:32
 
Hard to believe but I'd pass it up too if it didn't let you save. I've given games like this a shot before and learned my lesson. I'd play maybe a couple levels then give up.

I like the way Half-Life did it. They had reasonably frequent automatic save points AND let you save anywhere. The automatic save points let people never have to deal with saving the game if they didn't want to. You're never yanked out of the game into a save screen and thus you can maintain the immersion. I never played that way, I saved like hell, but it seemed like a good system.

At the very least let people disable save-anywhere in a config file. I don't see why this isn't THE answer and why
there'd be any argument.

Edit: Just saw Deadmeat's post about the very same thing: HL's save feature.
This comment was edited on May 15, 13:37.
34.
 
Choice should be the only Choice
May 15, 2003, 13:28
34.
Choice should be the only Choice May 15, 2003, 13:28
May 15, 2003, 13:28
 
Put an option at the beginning of the game(like some RPGs) when setting the difficulty level(or gameplay style)you also choose what the save game feature will be...
unlimited, limited, or beginning of each level saves. Then you are stuck with that choice until you finish or restart a game. Simple enough.

And just my opinion... but HL2 is looking so much better. I know id can make an awesome engine they were King-of-the-Hill for so many years. But now that hill-top has become crowded.

What id lacks is the ability to make a game that doesn't feel like you are on rails. With only one way to go and one way to achieve that destination. Your only choice is what weapon you use to blast the monsters. I hope they prove me wrong but I won't hold my breath.

One thing they appear to still be excellent at is the scary-ass tension in their dark level design. That is the only thing that drives me to finish their games.

And as far as game length goes I am happy with a shorter well rounded experience in a game. Quality over length is something a lot of developers need to apply. But they should also set a minimum target of 35 or 40 hours of game play. For a FPS that is a good deal of game play...

Avatar 11537
33.
 
Shadows
May 15, 2003, 13:28
33.
Shadows May 15, 2003, 13:28
May 15, 2003, 13:28
 
I think developers need to stop always adjusting for the lowest common denominator. People with a P3 500 and a Riva TNT won't be able to play this game, period. Why add an option to turn off what is THE most important aspect of gameplay just to pander to computers that can't really run the game at any decent level anyways?

It's not as if id needs the sales of the game for their income anyways, they make, what, 90% or so of their income of licensing.

Sometimes you just have to accept that what you've got just isn't good enough to do everything you want. I'd love to be able to watch ESPN in HD, but since I don't have an HD tv, I can't. If you have a four year old computer, you can't run Doom 3. Either upgrade, or play something else that will run on that machine.

It seems simple enough to me really, but I guess to publishing morons (not necessarily Carmack & co themselves) laming your engine so that a thousand more people can play is very smart decision making.

Fortunately it's an OPTION this time, as opposed to a "oh well, I guess we'll turn it off." decision. Tribes 2 anyone?

Btw, 15 hours of gameplay is a frigging ETERNITY in today's games. (my biggest peeve against current day games)

Edit : Not allowing to save everywhere is a fucking stupid decision (if it gets implemented) and will make sure that Doom 3 will never find its way onto my harddrive. That means one less dinner at Pizza Hut for you, Carmack!

Oh, and id has, in my opinion, NEVER been a "gamer's developer". Ever since Quake, id's focus has been on the engine, never on the gameplay. You can't really blame them for this, since it's the engine that makes them money. Say Doom 3 sells a million copies (which I doubt anyways, but for argument's sake). That's 60 million dollars (since I'm pretty sure I've read that the price was going to be 60 bucks). Nothing to scoff at, but now lets look at licensing. The Quake 2 engine, after the Quake 3 engine was already released, was still being licensed out for a "mere" 200.000 dollars. I believe the Quake 3 engine was licensed at slightly over a million. I'm guessing the Doom 3 engine will presumably cost something in the lines of 5 to 10 million dollars to license. That's where the money is going to be at, especially since they expect this engine to last for approximately five years.
Note, apart from the Quake 2 number, all the others are best guesses / not sures, so don't flame me for them.

Creston

This comment was edited on May 15, 13:44.
Avatar 15604
32.
 
No subject
May 15, 2003, 13:18
32.
No subject May 15, 2003, 13:18
May 15, 2003, 13:18
 
"Carmack and co. had better not be planning to sell this game for $50. 15 hours gameplay is not worth $50."

It'll probably sell for more, seeing as it's Doom.

And I also saw somewhere a while back that Carmack said dedicated players could finish Doom 3 in a weekend.

Avatar 13955
31.
 
Shadows option
May 15, 2003, 12:58
31.
Shadows option May 15, 2003, 12:58
May 15, 2003, 12:58
 
Making it possible to turn off the shadows would make all the possible new gameplay twists in Doom3 multiplayer (ie: taking care that your shadow isn't too visible, shooting out lights, etc) useless. They could minimize this by making it a very distinct setting on the client, so that the server can be set to only allow clients with shadows enabled to join.

And as for limitation on saves, it sucks. I've never heard a reviewer praise a game over it's glorious, perfectly balanced, limited amount of savegames.
It's allways regarded as a bother, and so do I. In fact, a lot of games who have had this feature, have released a patch lateron to make gamers disable this function.

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30.
 
So let me get this straight ...
May 15, 2003, 12:57
30.
So let me get this straight ... May 15, 2003, 12:57
May 15, 2003, 12:57
 
(disclaimer: I am a huge id fan and have been looking forward to D3 since it was announced; recent events have been making me change my mind. the following is rant in the purest sense)

I had long believed that Carmack and company were a "gamer's company," that they made their games as gamers first and developers second. However, this doesn't seem to be the case with Doom 3.

He "favours the trend" in the industry right now towards shorter games? Since when has id ever ben a company about favouring the trend. Doom, Quake, and Quake III were all about NOT following the trend (first FPS with Z-depth, first FPS in a true polygonal world, first online-only FPS) and look how those games turned out for them. What about giving us a longer game rich in content?

On the save-game issue: since when has not allowing players to save whenever they want been a valid crutch for lack of gameplay? My roomate and I both have Splinter Cell -- he for the X-Box, myself on my PC. He has been stuck on the same level for the last 3 weeks now -- he'll get thru the hard part but he has almost no health left and ends up getting shot dead by some stray bullet or another. I breezed past it because I was able to save it as soon as I beat the hard part. So tell me: who do you think is still playing the game? He gave up trying -- he's sick of it now, and frustrated beyond description. I'm still playing. For Carmack and co. to take the road of limited save games is just silly. Let the players decide -- don't force us to play it over and over again because you couldn't make the game long enough.

Which kind-of segways into another point: turning off the lights. This is where Carmack proves himself to be a hypocrite. Why won't players be allowed to save anywhere they want? Because it ruins the tension and the drama of the game. But oh, the most important graphical feature, the one that is "essential in many of the game's dramatic scenes" can go. We won't let the player save anywhere, any time, for dramatic purposes; but we'll let him turn off the most dramatic graphical feature of the game. That suggest (to me, anyway) that the limited save-game feature is just a BS excuse to extend the game. If he's willing to sacrifice one majour feature, he may as well be willing to sacrifice a minor one (don't even try to suggest that the save-game feature is more important than the lighting engine).

This speaks to me as a struggle in Carmack's mind to deal with the mediocre quality his game is shaping up towards. Gamers have spoken up about recent trends (Unreal II, MGS2, Halo, etc) and stated that they don't LIKE the short-game-deep-content ("deep content" meaning lots of eye candy and special effects -- if it was GAMEPLAY content the game would be longer). And with the promise of 40 hours of gameplay in Half-Life 2, and most likely that much for DX2, we don't have to like it. We can just buy another game.

So what, right? Ok, here's the deal. I don't buy short games unless the price is really low. Carmack and co. had better not be planning to sell this game for $50. 15 hours gameplay is not worth $50. 40 hours gameplay is. 80 hours is (any Baldur's Gate/Icewind Dale game, Morrowind, other RPGs). But 15 hours? No. I bought Unreal II, beat it, and brought it back to the store to trade it in for another game (CC:Generals -- that took me about 15 hours to beat as well ;P).

Either way, Doom III will come out, and people will buy it. Lots of people, I bet. But with games like Half-Life 2, Thief 3, and Deus Ex 2 coming out shortly, Doom III may go down as the single biggest disappointment in gaming history. Everyone has high expectations for Doom III. I had faith that Carmack would live up to them. Maybe I was wrong.

Peace,
-A.

29.
 
Re: The Obvious Solution
May 15, 2003, 12:49
29.
Re: The Obvious Solution May 15, 2003, 12:49
May 15, 2003, 12:49
 
Mario 3 ruled.

I once found an old busted NES at a jumble sale. It had Mario 3 with it. It overheated and crashed the whole time, but me and my brother managed to play through Mario 3 a few times on it. You had to set whole days aside to it. Meal times were a nightmare. Pause it and pray it doesn't crash while you're eating!

I loved that game.

28.
 
The Obvious Solution
May 15, 2003, 12:43
28.
The Obvious Solution May 15, 2003, 12:43
May 15, 2003, 12:43
 
Super Mario Bros. 3 for the ol' NES had absolutely no save game feature, yet it is still one of the most beloved games of all time.

Solution: 1-UP Lives and no Save Game feature.

It would be awesome. I would be scared out of my mind. Not to mention that the zombies would think you're nuts jumping around all over the place looking for hidden blocks.

27.
 
3 example games to consider
May 15, 2003, 12:43
27.
3 example games to consider May 15, 2003, 12:43
May 15, 2003, 12:43
 
1) Undying. This is in a similar vein to what someone said about System Shock 2. Undying is a scary game, and I was often scared to go on playing at times. I saved over and over in that game because I didn't want to have to chance going back against a single monster because they were damn scary. The game achieved huge amounts of tension in spite of the fact that I saved every 5 seconds.

2) Project IGI. That game irritated the hell out of me. As someone said, you ended up playing the levels in a totally robotic way, exactly as the devs decided. After about 10 times through a level you knew precisely where everyone was, how to score a headshot on every guard, and you still had to play through the same 5 minutes of tedious crap to get the actual bit you were trying to tackle. It was infuriating.
I assume the idea is that you learn to act like a real secret agent. James Bond can't save any time he likes, so why should I be able to in Project IGI? The trouble is, playing through the levels over and over, you learn how to exploit the system and do stupid reckless stuff. You learn the times when you can just blindly run through an open space, because you've played the level that many times that you know no-one is looking that way at that time. Sure, James Bond might run through wide open spaces, but as a result of good recon. In Project IGI good recon was synonymous with playing the leve 50 times and seeing where everyone is that way.
That system shoots itself in the foot.

3) Max Payne. On lower difficulties, you can save anywhere you like in Max Payne. Each time you tackle an enemy, each bullet time sequence you complete... you can save. At higher difficulty levels, you are limited to fewer saves, 7 per level I think. That way you only use those saves at the especially difficult parts. The limited saving becomes a further challenge associated with the difficulty level. Best of both worlds.

26.
 
Half-Life (1) got saving right
May 15, 2003, 12:30
26.
Half-Life (1) got saving right May 15, 2003, 12:30
May 15, 2003, 12:30
 
I'm just playing through it again since they announced the sequel (still a great game), and I've always like the way games are saved in Half-Life.

It does a save before many of the tricky bits automatically, which can be a pleasant surprise if you've not saved recently and suddenly die. Also having the 2 rolling quick saves means you can save often if you want to, but you're slightly discouraged because once you've lost most of your health you don't want to quick save twice or you can have real problems if you die. But with 2 quick saves rather than one, you're less likely to waste time doing "proper" saves when you get nervous

25.
 
No subject
May 15, 2003, 12:30
25.
No subject May 15, 2003, 12:30
May 15, 2003, 12:30
 
why cant they just make it an option, like difficulty, easy = unlimited saves, hard 1 or 2 per level

im getting more and more hesitant about doom3

Doin' it Big
24.
 
Re: No subject
May 15, 2003, 12:25
24.
Re: No subject May 15, 2003, 12:25
May 15, 2003, 12:25
 
I've seen way to many people take advantage of save and load schemes. Including myself. and it really does take away from the game.
Then the player can just not save often.
There are two camps: Those who don't want lots of saves, and those who do. Unlimited saves does not alienate those who don't wish to save often. Limited saves, however, alienates those who do.
I really do not see what is stopping people from stopping themselves from saving, if they truely believe that unlimited saves take away from tension in a game.
Xombie x0mbie x0mb|e Xombie
23.
 
Re: Fister
May 15, 2003, 12:22
23.
Re: Fister May 15, 2003, 12:22
May 15, 2003, 12:22
 
But, for those peeps who jump in, murder a load of people, and then jump out again its not great.
It's also not great for people who don't have the time available to sit down and play whole levels through at once. Then there's also the frustration that limited saves causes, especially in an FPS, where dying is very common.
Xombie x0mbie x0mb|e Xombie
22.
 
No subject
May 15, 2003, 12:11
22.
No subject May 15, 2003, 12:11
May 15, 2003, 12:11
 
auto save where the developers control common save spot is the best solution for this. I've seen way to many people take advantage of save and load schemes. Including myself. and it really does take away from the game. A good amount time should be spent on the Difficulty level of the game if they are to take out the save feature during levels. It's a balancing act.

This comment was edited on May 15, 12:12.
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