When talking about future features its hard to make a distinction between broad advancements we would personally like to have (as something that would modernize the game) and things that will actually have a significant, needed impact on the way the game plays. We would obviously love to see all sorts of things added to tdm, but the game has a lot of legacy, and we simply dont have the manpower... Still, anything that adds to the way light works in the game carries a lot of potential and relevance, as it is the single most important factor for tdm. Making lighting more interesting, more realistic, will always be worthwhile. If its a true raytracing method or a probe gi system like nbhor mentioned, that would be absolutely insane to have, for sure.
Having said that, we should probably focus on the latter type of features, as they seem more attainable. For example, improving the idtech4 physics system would open entire avenues in terms of what mappers would be able to do, and how players interact with the world inside the game. We have plenty of examples of that in HL2, or Dark Messiah. TDM would benefit greatly from having a more interactive world, enhancing its stabilished style perfectly. Feathered alpha textures and better lod mechanics would allow for vast, good looking outdoors maps, making it worthwhile for mappers and contributors to explore that pathway, of having a sneaking experience that is not limited to the inside of buildings. Right now our nature assets are very basic and there are no open maps as far as Im aware, apart from the first section of winter harvest. Volumetric lights are not only for eye candy, coupled with parallel lights it would open the way for indoors missions that happen during day time, where you have to avoid the light beams coming through the windows, cracked walls or ceilings. It seems important for me that these features are,as far as possible, all part of the "engine", in a way that they work without having to be propped up by the mapper for each individual situation, in a painful, complex process that many will never dare go through. Thats pretty important for mappers. So new features also need to worry about being mapper-friendly if they really are to have an impact. Projected shadow lights and the color grading code have seen very little use so far if any, even though they are really cool, perhaps for the simple fact that they are not integrated in the game, and most people might not even know they exist.
Edited by RPGista, 25 April 2019 - 12:21 AM.