Author Topic: Graphics-A Discussion.  (Read 6380 times)

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Offline MR_T3D

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Graphics-A Discussion.
Personally, i think that advances in the graphics in games is no longer that worthwhile, since about 2005, specificially the games battlefield 2 and the source engine.
HOWEVER I SHOULD STATE THIS NOW: BF2 could use a bit longer distance in its LoD's, both model and geometry, but view distance on 4km maps is good enough, could use more physics-based obojects, and source engine also looks good when properly utilized.
PC games today such as ArMA2 and Crysis look awsome, no doubt, but they aren't that much more awsome, espicially on medium-low hardware, medium setting, when compared to those gammes in full res, full AA,, high setting.  Its just that the bump-mapping but slightly lower res diffuse texture. doesn't seem to jive with me, and is the main reason why i prefer the look of America's army 2.X..X to AA3, in fact, i don't really like the look of most all of the games using unreal3, even Gears of War on consoles :doubt: .


now of course, FSU looks awsome, espicially some of the bump-mapped ships, but space-based game's visual quality is largly in the talent of the modelers, while the more 'earthly' mainstream games have to deal with enviroments, which i am sure consume a few resources :rolleyes:
As far as i am concerned, there is something to be said about a game with full-resolution textures, nice models which, yes, sometimes use hexagons for minigun barrels, but with spec mapping that hides it, as opposed to full-dynamic-lit 12-sided barrels, and yes, are not rendering a million tri's at a time.
am i crazy in thinking this, or do other agree with me?

 

Offline CP5670

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I agree that game graphics have largely peaked by now, but not with the games you brought up. Crysis graphics are in fact that much more awesome. :p The BF2 engine and Source were pretty average even for their time.

In any case, I don't expect to see any graphical improvements beyond Crysis until 2012 or whenever the next generation of consoles comes out. The consoles drive all game development these days and we have reached the limits of what the 360 and PS3 can do.

You're right that large textures generally make a bigger difference to graphical quality than detailed models, and they are something we don't see much of these days because the consoles can't handle them. The best textures I've seen actually come in mods for various games. There are large 2048x2048 texture packs for UT and Deus Ex, where you can really see the difference. Fallout 3 also has similar content mods, although I couldn't get those working properly.

Most of the UE3 games do have crappy textures, although UT3 is an exception and has much better ones.

 

Offline MR_T3D

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yes crysis is beter, no doubts, but i justy believe that with the games i listed that they are goood enough.
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AND yes, i agree, we won't see anything much better until next console generation.
AND yeah, it seems real stupid if you look at the memory in the 360 and ps3 in their manuals.
AND yeah, those texture packs look great.
i dunno, i played UT3 during its 1st free steam weekend, and the textures were alright, but not great.
even browsing some high-res screenies on the web, from systems with better g-cards than my 8600, i see that the textures ARE high res, good quality, it seems more like a lighting issue that i simply don't like.
i'd personally rather see developers work on stuff like destructible enviroments and larger scale combat than bump-mapping and dynamicially-lighting everything and their mum.
espicially bullet marks, those are always nice to see.

 

Offline Ghostavo

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Honestly, good enough is relative to the player.

While games like Crysis look good, they have a defect that on certain objects and scenery, the textures and models aren't as good as they could be. Games could benefit a great deal if they could get all those visuals on a consistent package, rather than gorgeous animated characters with shading and dynamic lighting and shadows in their teeth and trees that look like... things that slightly resemble trees with hideous textures.
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Offline Flipside

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I play Dwarf Fortress, what are graphics? ;)

 

Offline General Battuta

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Art design is more important than graphics.

I've been playing through Halo 3 ODST and while it's nowhere near as technically proficient as Crysis, its neon-and-rain cityscapes (rendered in gorgeous outline, almost like cel-shading, with night vision active) are really striking.

 

Offline Rodo

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I just finished playing Dead Space, awesome game... really spooky, the graphics are quite good, specially the "bloody" parts on the walls and all that stuff ^^
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Offline Stormkeeper

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I play Dwarf Fortress, what are graphics? ;)
You know, those, little colorful things, hopping around the place on your screen? Those are the grandfathers of graphics. :p
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Offline MR_T3D

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Art design is more important than graphics.

I've been playing through Halo 3 ODST and while it's nowhere near as technically proficient as Crysis, its neon-and-rain cityscapes (rendered in gorgeous outline, almost like cel-shading, with night vision active) are really striking.
yes. that game shows how nice the H3 engine is. looks nice and clean, sublte bump-maps and the lighing in ODST is AWSOME.
my only beef with it is the weapon/blood marks on stuff only really appear on geometry, and not in spitscreen.

 

Offline CP5670

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i'd personally rather see developers work on stuff like destructible enviroments and larger scale combat than bump-mapping and dynamicially-lighting everything and their mum.

Red Faction: Guerilla has destructible buildings, although it apparently doesn't let you actually modify terrain like the old RF games did.

As far as graphical features go, I would like to see more games with large crowds. That was my favorite aspect of Assassin's Creed and made the game very immersive.

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While games like Crysis look good, they have a defect that on certain objects and scenery, the textures and models aren't as good as they could be. Games could benefit a great deal if they could get all those visuals on a consistent package, rather than gorgeous animated characters with shading and dynamic lighting and shadows in their teeth and trees that look like... things that slightly resemble trees with hideous textures.

I think the trees are fine, but you're right that some things in Crysis do look strikingly bad compared to everything else. The rock cliffs and the interiors of the Korean encampments (improved in Warhead) come to mind, and the water is a little underwhelming as well.

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yes. that game shows how nice the H3 engine is. looks nice and clean, sublte bump-maps and the lighing in ODST is AWSOME.
my only beef with it is the weapon/blood marks on stuff only really appear on geometry, and not in spitscreen.

I looked up some screenshots of this and can't see much there at all. In any case, Battuta was referring to the level artwork, as the engine itself looks quite outdated.

I think the best level artwork and concepts I've seen are in the UT2004 and UT3 maps, both official and fanmade ones. UT3's original maps were less impressive, but some of the newer and custom ones are very good. They are loaded with details and many of them have a strange, surreal look that I especially like. They actually try to be creative instead of just emulating reality like most games. It's kind of wasted in these games though since you aren't going to notice anything in the maps while actually playing. :p

 

Offline General Battuta

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I gotta argue with the assertion that the Halo 3 engine is outdated. It produces crisp, beautiful visuals on the basis of excellent art design (in levels, skyboxes, characters, and weapons.) Crysis is more technically proficient, but Halo is more striking. 'Clean' is the best way to describe it. Solid, coherent, confident, bold. And smooth!

 

Offline NGTM-1R

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I'm going to have to agree with Battuta here. For all its hype, the CryTek engine offers shockingly little for its system requirements. The H3 engine does more with what it's given.
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Offline General Battuta

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I guess I can't argue with 'outdated' in that it's now aging, but it's never looked anything but extraordinarily handsome to me.

It's sort of a grand ol' dame of engines. It may be old, it may not have the new hawtness, but it just has class and grace and polish.

 

Offline CP5670

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I don't know why you guys like Halo 3's graphics so much. The Halo games have never been known for their graphics, and even on the consoles there are better looking games around.

You are also confusing the engine itself with the level artwork. The engine has hardly anything going for it today, even if the levels might be well designed. In fact, I believe it has a hardcoded 30fps cap, which already makes it garbage in my book. :p

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I'm going to have to agree with Battuta here. For all its hype, the CryTek engine offers shockingly little for its system requirements. The H3 engine does more with what it's given.

Crysis does have somewhat inconsistent graphics, but at its best it's streets ahead of anything else out there. If you take the engine performance into account, UT3 is the main example that comes to mind. It can look great and run well on fairly moderate hardware. The original Far Cry is also worth mentioning, as it still looks remarkably good for such an old game. It has aged a lot better than other games from that era, and the engine was capable of much more, as seen in the Delta Sector mod for it.

 

Offline Fineus

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I still can't help but feel that the CryTek engine - and games developed on it - are largely a yard-stick for graphics and they're successful precisely because they target the high end modding crowd who want to prove a point about the power of their computer systems.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed Crysis and Warhead but there's till a feel of "Here's what happens when we stop caring about getting things to run on everyones computers and simply make something as hardcore as we can. Looks good doesn't it? But you can't run it, ha ha."

So Crysis may be capable of the best visuals on the market to date, but it isn't refined into a solid / reliable / suitable-for-all engine as perhaps the H3 / Source / UT engines are. It's still damn pretty though, and if nothing else it's a good thing for companies to aspire to because...

...on a closing note, it has color in it! All those game engines out there with some sort of curious brown shader (Gears of War / GTA4 / etc.) can look nice but really they needn't have this artistic filter and in some ways that's a cop-out for making some actually interesting textures etc. Crysis achieves this and can still throw all the colors of a tropical island at you. That's the ace up its sleeve for me.

 

Offline General Battuta

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I don't know why you guys like Halo 3's graphics so much. The Halo games have never been known for their graphics, and even on the consoles there are better looking games around.

You are also confusing the engine itself with the level artwork. The engine has hardly anything going for it today, even if the levels might be well designed. In fact, I believe it has a hardcoded 30fps cap, which already makes it garbage in my book. :p

It has color and beautiful lighting. It looks great, and it makes me go 'whoa!' more than any other engine. For better or worse, my criteria aren't much deeper than that.

 

Offline MR_T3D

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I don't know why you guys like Halo 3's graphics so much. The Halo games have never been known for their graphics, and even on the consoles there are better looking games around.

You are also confusing the engine itself with the level artwork. The engine has hardly anything going for it today, even if the levels might be well designed. In fact, I believe it has a hardcoded 30fps cap, which already makes it garbage in my book. :p

It has color and beautiful lighting. It looks great, and it makes me go 'whoa!' more than any other engine. For better or worse, my criteria aren't much deeper than that.
amen!
i think the point here is that we achieved a stage around 05 where deveolping better graphivces simply isn't as nice looking as good art. and yes, crow would be just as nice as destructible enviroments, and RF:C IS a good looking game in my opinion, but i ws generallyu discounting consoles in my OP, it WAS focoused on the PC, but ahh, well.
and now its time for 2h class and 3h lab this afternoon./ fun.

 

Offline Liberator

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I grow weary of the constant attempt to be "more realistic" in video game graphics.  I prefer simpler, stylized graphics.  Not necessarily cartoony, but a graphical style and the engine underneath it should support the game mechanics and the story being told, not the other way around.  Hence Warcraft's popularity.
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Offline headdie

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sometimes "realism" gets in the way of balanced playability
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Offline General Battuta

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Here's the kind of thing I was thinking of with regards to H3:

clicky