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Author Topic: Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...  (Read 5965 times)

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Uhfgood

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Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« on: October 01, 2003, 09:14:35 PM »

This is quite interesting, in my official xbox mag, it mentions the new Broken Sword game (for the xbox maybe for other systems too), as well as a review of the game Syberia.

It seems pure adventure games are starting to make a comeback, although not 2d cartoon adventure games.  Still it's a great sign!

btw Mnemonic, you should start creating a 3D engine for Wintermute.  Now firstly hear me out, i'm still a 2d adventure game kind of guy.  But let's remember the old king's quest games being touted as "3D" games because you could walk behind and in front of objects.
Also consider that with a 3d model you could have a full 3d room to have your characters walk around.  The reason i'm thinking about this, is because i'd like to make a game where the characters are 2d cartoon sprites and the background is a 3d model (plus appropriately textured to look like it belongs in a cartoon, but that would be done by me)  It would just make things alot easier, you could still use sprites but now you could design them for 3d space in mind.

anyways just a suggestion :-)

Keith

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odnorf

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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2003, 11:14:32 PM »

I think that the most important feature for the 3D capabilities of the WME is the revival of the 3D characters (some kind of support is actually in the wme.exe right now) which is already a TODO.

I agree that in the future (maybe in WME v2.0 or 3.0) most 3D capabilites would be cool :) My dream would be something similar with the GK3 real-time 3D engine with free camera movement which I consider the most revolutionary engine I have seen the last 6-7-8 years but as I said this is just a dream - Why I can't stop using this word :).

PS. This topic is in the wrong forum category but this something usual around here :)
« Last Edit: October 01, 2003, 11:54:37 PM by odnorf »
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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2003, 09:26:50 AM »

Well, odnorf pretty much summarized my thoughts and plans. I'd like to revive the 3D characters first, then full 3D scenes would follow.
As for 2D characters in 3D environment, I'm not sure it's a good idea. After all, this concept has been abandoned about 10 years ago ;) The main reason being probably it doesn't look very good (compared to real 3D characters, that is) plus you have to use fixed camera angles so that your prerendered 2D characters don't look stupid (if someone played System Shock 1, he knows what I'm talking about :)) So... I don't think it's a way to go.
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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2003, 02:59:58 PM »

You're wrong about 2d characters in a 3d enviroment, in fact it would probably look fine, assuming that your 3d enviroment was made to look 2d.   Really I think it would just be a good idea to use a true 3d enviroment so you could obscure objects and characters without having to deal with layer priorities, or whatever 2d system you have right now.

If however you end up taking the 2d stuff completely out, I probably won't use WME

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odnorf

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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2003, 04:52:40 PM »

I am not sure that I understand 100% what you want to do.

If you would like to have a static background then you don't need real-time 3d rendering since you can use a prerendered image (which is going to have much better quality than a real-time one). This is what Grim Fandango, Monkey4, Syberia, The longest Journey etc are using.

If on the other hand you want to have camera movement inside a 3d room then you would need 3D character.
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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2003, 07:10:06 AM »

First let's clear some things up.  I suggested a 3D enviroment simply for ease of use in positioning characters, behind and in front of items, secondly so you could use a 3d coordinate system for where to place objects.

Secondly to have camera movement inside a 3d room, I still don't need 3d character models, they can still be scaled sprites that are always facing the camera, think of the old sprite/billboarding technique used in wolfenstein 3d, and Doom...

Thirdly if you have any kind of horizontal scrolling it would simply look neat if the enviroment changed perspective as you were moving, in most cases a 2d sprite character would be mainly in the center of the screen, where the background is moving behind him, thus you don't need a full 3d model for that.

Finally I'm not saying not to have 3d characters in there if you want it... I'm just saying I still prefer 2d, but there are some things in 3D that might be a bit better even if i'm just using it to do 2D...

If you notice some of the latter disney cartoons, they use 3d for certain things to some extent, while still retaining the 2d cartoon quality of traditional animation.

For instance way back during Alladin, when escaping the Cave of Wonders, the "lava" portion of it was a 3d mesh that was textured with a hand painted lava texture.  

Currently in Treasure planet, they actually did 3d models of the ships which were textured (I think with hand painted textures), where they still did traditional 2d cel-based animation and matched-moved the animation elements with the camera, so the animation would be in perspective.

Now if you're thinking i'm talking from a purely developer standpoint, consider how you have to create objects that can be walked around in the editor, you have to create the way points, and you have to have a sprite element overtop the background to get the player to walk in front of or behind and object.  You also have to set the scaling attributes for a room, since it's purely 2d.

If you did this in a 3d room, you would simply place elements through a modeller style editor (although i'm not talking about modelling the enviroment in wme, but just for placement of objects).  Set your z position and your x and y ( or just x and z ), and the engine automatically scales the sprites appropriately based on the distance from the camera.

Now, this all sounds complex, and it probably is, if Mnemonic can't do something like that I totally understand however, I think that there's greater flexibility when adding 3d elements to basic 2d scenes...

Plus, if he did include both 3d models for characters, and/or 2d sprites for characters, you could conceivably create characters or objects that were half hand-drawn, half computer generated.  (See Treasure planet also for this, when they attached a mechanical arm to Long John Silver, which was modeled in 3d and attached to the 2d animations of Silver)...

All in all you could still achieve a hand drawn look, and still do hand drawn stuff for sprites, and hand painted textures to look like a cartoon, but with a greater flexibility and power than wme currently has.

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odnorf

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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2003, 09:26:18 AM »

Thanks for clearing things up :)

I agree that a real-time 3D engine would be cool but not for the case you want to use it. ;D Because if you just want to use static backgrounds you will actually have MUCH lower quality since they would be real-time rendered. The analogy with the movies doesn't fit here IMHO because it's a complete different case (prerendered art). The only benefit as you pointed out would be the easier positioning of the items in the scene. Also the 2D characters in a 3D backgrounds technic has been used before (you gave some examples) and it was abandoned because it's quality was not good with today's standards. So, I still think, for your case a prerendered 3D background would be MUCH better. And if you want to have camera movement sometimes (no action ofcourse) with perspective etc (like the EXCELLENT animations and scene changes of "Blade Runner") you could use prerendered videos in entities (it's a TODO).

EDIT: There are currently engines that could do what you want to do. For example the engine the fangame KQ9 is/will be using is a pure 3D engine designed mainly for pure 3D action games. (I can't remember it's name now. It is "crystal ...something..." and it's opensource.) The disadvantage is that it would be very difficult and complex to create an adventure game with this engine because it was not desinged for them. BUT as I said IT IS possible.

EDIT2: Many "edits" today.... Anyway, as Mnemonic said in his reply "I'd like to revive the 3D characters first, then full 3D scenes would follow." So... we need to be patient A LOT (it would not be soon.)  ;D ;D ;D
« Last Edit: October 03, 2003, 09:34:12 AM by odnorf »
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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2003, 09:53:30 AM »

(I can't remember it's name now. It is "crystal ...something..." and it's opensource.)

Crystal Space 3D, http://crystal.sourceforge.net
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Uhfgood

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Re:Adventure games coming back? In the form of 3d versions...
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2003, 09:14:14 PM »

Here's another pro for it...  If everything is based on a 3d coordinate system you can use sprites for everything including the backgrounds.  What I mean is yous till get the positioning and effects advantages (even automatic scaling) if it's based in 3d.  So instead you could STILL use pre-rendered backgrounds (hand drawn or pre-rendered 3d), with all the advantages i've described.  As far as the quality of realtime rendered graphics, the quality isn't so low that it would look bad, alot of 3d games today don't look that bad, so a 3d enviroment wouldn't actually look bad, although it would be true that pre-rendered might look much better.  But if it's the case of making it look 2d then the quality shouldn't be that much of an issue.

Also a case in point, 3d pre-rendered backgrounds wouldn't necesserily be better for me, since i'm still doing stuff that looks like a cartoon.  If you notice most cartoon backgrounds don't look realistic either, even if they look really nice.

It would be cool reguardless...  And you can't tell me it wouldn't be cool for what I want to use it for, because it's my preference.  It may not be cool for what you want to do, but for me it would be great.  If the game is good, then it will still sell and people would still like it.  When playing doom did people complain because the 3d backgrounds didn't look real enough?  I mean the sprites of the demons were practically cartoons.

The engines that do what I want to do are purely rendering engines, with the exception of garage games torque (which has alot more stuff although some people say to stay away from it, while others say it's good)...  

Since torque has a scripting engine conceivably I could use that to make an adventure game, however, I would have to modify it to make my adventure game, when i'm really interested in making games.

There's just never anything that does everything you want for you.  I'll probably write an adventure game in wme as is, and then my next one after that will be written in an engine made by me in whatever language i'm using at the time.

Mnemonic - I doubt i'm going to change your opinion on anything one way or another, so i'm going to apologize for making a suggestion which you most likely would not end up doing anyways.

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