Wtf Kaz is already taken I am le sad :(
Anyway some effortless c/p about NS2!
Lerks get ceiling roosting ability and "Alt-fire zooms his view and changes his spike attack into more of a sniper attack. This will let him hide in dark places and pick off marines. We also plan on adding a cool bit of flavor with this - if the sniper spike kills a marine standing near a wall, the spike will impale him up against it."
"99% of gamecode is scripted in Lua to begin with (and that will be public source) that includes all movement, all weapons, etc. You can even change Lua scripts on the fly in the running game. They even provide one of the best (and only?) Lua debugger .
They provide very innovative cinematic (even for the 3d skyboxes), texture and particle tools.
NS2 mapping tool is the best and easiest I've ever seen, and there is no map compile time what-so-ever."
" One of their coolest engine features is that all UI is made in.. Flash! Your Flash UI code can interact with Lua game code, and display stuff accordingly. And you can either have it as top layer on screen, or even layer it as texture on models and world geometry! Did you see the ammunition display on the rifle model updating ammo as you fired? That was Flash! Fuck, you can do anything with that shit.."
"Aside from the tech, here they show a little bit their process of artwork creation, which is cool to look at too."
"Anyway, in the first video they say something about planning to use motion capture, but they dropped that and got a really skilled guy to do everything by hand.
Another thing is, in the second video they talk about how nice it is to have no compile time on mapping, most of all because of the dynamic lightning. But even other engines that feature that still have compile time, because there is something else that must be compiled and that is precomputation of visibility. What this is is that for every face there is precalculated which other faces can be directly seen from it, to elimininate unnecessarily rendering hidden geometry when the game is running. Thing is they got a really hot technology that eliminates even that vis-precomputation, while still having high performance close-to-vis-only rendering, all dynamically on the fly, no matter how world geometry may change ingame, which is fucking awesome extreme flexibility. It also is an element that helps having their engine be prepared for outdoor rendering, which hasn't been showed yet much, so you may have doubted if it's suited at all for that. And that there is really no down time --at all-- in the creative process is really huuuge, and I haven't seen this much in other engines yet.
Then they have an awesome dynamic sound engine, that mixes sounds on the fly depending on things like distance, definitions of space, etc, and that of course can be used by your scripts.
And then one of my favourites is their color grading feature. You can place a color grading entity in the editor, just as you would place a light entitity. Any player being in range of it, gets all his colours, contrast and saturation adjusted as you defined, as postprocess after the textures are drawn and lighting is done. It can be used for local bloom, for more contrast, higher saturation, giving the whole scene a deep hue of a colour, or doing very subtle manipulations of the scene's mood, dynamically on the fly. For instance, in an engine room starting up, or full of heat or molten lava you can set the scene colour to be more warm, in an freezing room adjusting colors colder, in some outer space have it be more bleak in impression. Its about the little things that really help set the tone and mood. It's really cool how easy this effect is setup in the editor, and that it works as an after pass independently of the coloration of textures and lightning. "
"What I at least would use NS2 for however. is rapid prototyping of fps level and gameplay and asset design. You can still go through the laborious and time consuming process of implementing it high quality in other games for greater exposure, but where else can you put together and test some shit anywhere near as fast to find out how well your various fps designs work? But I tell you man, I bet after working with this, you will have a very hard time bringing yourself to go back to other stuff. Suddenly everything's so complicated and time wasting, blaaargh. "
"Quick example needed? Remember how I mentioned vis-precalculation? not only is it another example out of a million how you spend two third of your time twiddling your thumbs waiting for shit, but holy fucking crap is it buggy. Misplace one fucking vertex somewhere so that there is a little so called "leak", which means that there is a hole in the map that rather is supposed to be fully enclosed and self-contained for the visibility calculation, and it breaks everything. When a player is in that area it again does the very things it was supposed to prevent, drawing the whole fucking map, hundreds of thousands of polygons, albeit in the correct order without graphical flaw, but chugging along with 1 frame per second. And then you spend several nights finding the leak in the map's geometry and another several correcting it, just so you can again wait hours for the compilation process.. only to be told by your players they found another one. Holy fucking shit is that retarded. At least other engines provide so called vis-portals so the mapper can manually break up the map's draw strain, but that doesn't work well outdoors, and the world geometry must still not change. This super annoying and difficult problem on any engine in various degrees, is suddenly an absolute non-issue in NS2, They use an automated runtime occlusion culling technique first published in a little overlooked paper 2008 (demo: http://www.cg.tuwien.ac.at/research/publications/2008/mattausch-2008-CHC/mattausch-2008-CHC-multiqueries-video.avi), it's the hottest shit. You won't even know such a problem ever existed, it's history. All you care about now is creating map geometry in the easiest way ever, and jump right in."
"The NS2 guys even provide their very own complete and outstanding Lua IDE including debugger for your scriptcode, which is a seriously bitching tool (demo: http://www.unknownworlds.com/images/decoda/DebugTutorial.mov). And what are you stuck with on Source? A hellhole shitting in your face."
"NS2's tech makes a space-station map possible that you can let break apart ingame, no vis complications."
You know, their Cinematic&Particle&Effects editor kicks as much ass as all their other tools (sneakpeak demo 1: http://www.unknownworlds.com/files/ns2/effect/effect06.mov and 2: http://www.unknownworlds.com/files/ns2/effect/effect10.mov ), not only can you do machinima like their teasers/trailers/reveals,
but you can do in-match animated / transformative world events. You can even use it for animating their 3d-skybox. A skybox is the following: It is a cube room which is textured inside with the supposed world backround image, which in case of a 3d-skybox can even be 3d objects like buildings to have them dynamically affected by world lightning and events and naturally slight perspective adjustments. Now how a skybox works ingame is that the engine always renders it first and always with the player in the exact middle of it, no matter where on the actual map he currently is, and then renders the map over it. For this reason, no matter where you move on the actual map, the boundaries of the skybox are always exactly the same distance away from you, giving a very-far-away impression, especially through that resulting parallax effect to the rest of the map. Now the thing is since in the cinematic editor you can even make cinematic sequences for that skybox which can make for insanely cool looking stuff. To stay at our space station example, imagine a scenario, where the space station got caught up in an asteroid field, which is part of the cinematic 3d-skybox, and then sometimes asteroids are made to crush parts of that station to change the battlefield, So you can see we would use that cinematic tool to define all the world destructions and transformations, and let them appropriatly trigger as events for players depending on your defined conditions, which of course can be as simple as counting damage on certain objects, or involve missions, like overloading reactors, or activating an h-bomb, or releasing giant monsters that run amok on the environment or some shit.
Now the thing is, their dynamic occlusion culling method, which is very difficult to implement well so they must have had many things in mind going to make it worthwhile going to such lengths so there's hope, and that makes all this possible on principle (and unfeasable to impossible to begin with everywhere else), is of course on its own not enough to really use the full potential of that, it also depends how well world geometry data formats support transformations (Valve's bsp-format: FAIL), and how far they are willing to invest themselves into tools support. If they do go all the way, the upcoming God of War 3, which uses a similar technique or tricks its way around design wise, either way gives us a glimpse of what is possible in terms of scale and moving-on-Giant-Monsters-maps:
We will see how far the NS2 guys can invest into indepth support for something like this, but even if only used for local destruction scenes, there's still alot of potential. Charlie explicitely mentioned at several occasions that NS2 shoots for dynamic environments as one of its main pillars. Of course there are even more ways to get at that. For instance, they consider map scenarios where marines have an entry sequence, like coming in dropships or somesuch. But more excitingly. did I mention they are going to put in a kickass flamethrower. It's one of the means for marines to counter the kickass dynamic alien infestation and traps Alien commanders can spread and place (yes aliens have a commander now as well, but he's supposed to play entirely different than the Marines'), which they prototyped here:
They are even going farther with dynamic environments: this infestation (as is with marines building their bases) actually affects the map elements (you can script that). So for example, machines power down or up depending on which side controls that through infestation/basebuild, windows through which sunlight shines become overgrown by infestation to darken an area, or doors open/close, or water tanks crack to flood an area, or electric lights/consoles/instruments flicker (another example is that marines are supposed to establish powerlines between their controlled areas, and if aliens damage the line somewhere, you see the instruments and lights flicker in the soon-to-be cut off regions, and power down when its all cut). And I'm sure all these elements they provide can be repurposed for our wiles. "
i'm pretty sure that "kaz" account is yours from when you asked me about china way back when. guess your password. or maybe it can e-mail your lost password to you.
the map editor looks pretty cool compared to the last time i tried making 3d maps. combined with no compile time and scripting this should raise the bar for map making, which is really the heart of most games. a lot of time-eating things should be non-issues, so they can pretty much go from prototyping to finished product instantly. i like this. the teaser seems to indicate that this is having a positive effect.
it's strange that they've gone from making a mod for an old engine to making what seems like perhaps the best engine ever (from a mod maker's perspective) for their sequel.
i didn't watch all the vids linked obviously because there's like hours of them. but it looks cool. how much will it cost?
It's not registered to any email address I still use :(
My mistake. I think these Nabble accounts are all on the same system, so it's not just my forum. Probably somebody else is using the name on some other forum (you must run into this a lot).
I believe you can make an account on an e-mail address, then set up aliases. Perhaps you can use Kaz as an alias even though your account e-mail is different. Login is always by e-mail anyways.
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