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Doom 3 BFG Edition and TDM sitting in a tree


jay pettitt
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The writing is already on the wall, folks. Modding was on the decline anyway, and many game publishers will be happy to help this process along to capture those extra bucks.

 

(Remember which company started the first great wave of modding and user-made levels? That's right, iD. But they have lost their independence, and seem to be losing the ability to call the shots anymore.)

Come the time of peril, did the ground gape, and did the dead rest unquiet 'gainst us. Our bands of iron and hammers of stone prevailed not, and some did doubt the Builder's plan. But the seals held strong, and the few did triumph, and the doubters were lain into the foundations of the new sanctum. -- Collected letters of the Smith-in-Exile, Civitas Approved

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Megatexture works in Doom 3. There's a mod that supplies the missing fragment program and a test map floating around. I'm certain it would work in TDM as well. The hurdle is modeling knowledge. You can't realistically use megatexture on brushes and patches.

I'm guessing blender would be a minimum requirement in this instance, well if I have to learn...

 

The writing is already on the wall, folks. Modding was on the decline anyway, and many game publishers will be happy to help this process along to capture those extra bucks. That's right, iD. But they have lost their independence, and seem to be losing the ability to call the shots anymore.)

That depressing.

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Heh, yeah. One thing that article said was there are not (m)any other projects that are even using the id4 open source. And if Doom3 itself shuts off mods... then our standalone platform could suddenly be one of the best ways to build a game off the id4 engine. But that depends if people even notice it's possible, which isn't obvious will happen. Then again, people are attracted to free engines to build off of (cf. Unity), and that will be a nice attraction for us.

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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One positive note: When BFG Edition's sources are released, there may be some useful salvage material in there. Tr3B over at Doom3world has been looking

at GL calls and cvars and has found that:

 

1) Every ARB2 shader in the original Doom 3 has a corresponding GLSL version in BFG.

2) There appears to be a cvar to use the GPU to perform mesh deforms and animation

Please visit TDM's IndieDB site and help promote the mod:

 

http://www.indiedb.com/mods/the-dark-mod

 

(Yeah, shameless promotion... but traffic is traffic folks...)

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From what I've read, porting things backward into the old version of Doom3 would be much harder than porting an existing mod forward.

 

I grabbed myself a copy of the BFG edition to see what types of improvements there might be. I've only played for 15 minutes, but so far I have seen:

 

1. Fast loading times - They moved everything to a binary format.

The first map in the game took 60 seconds to load in the original D3.

That same map took approximately 10 seconds in the BFG edition.

 

2. Graphic option changes take place immediately. No reboot for your resolution changes anymore.

 

3. Apparently there is some multi-core threading going on. I definitely noticed an improvement in BFG edition where scenes that might stutter momentarily in D3 are now smooth.

 

Could be more, but I would have to spend more time on it.

 

The inclusion of the binary format eliminates any work that we would have had to do on it...and I hear that the renderer has been optimized and updated somewhat as well.

 

Certainly worth considering a look when the source is GPL'd.

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Doom 3 standard Edition was taken out of the Steam Store and they will only sell the non-moddable Doom 3 BFG Edition from now on.

 

M*thaf*ckin game publisher concerns always wanna make more money instead of providing support and mod friendlyness. I'm so sick and tired of this shit.

 

Biker - your word!

"Einen giftigen Trank aus Kräutern und Wurzeln für die närrischen Städter wollen wir brauen." - Text aus einem verlassenen Heidenlager

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Doom 3 standard Edition was taken out of the Steam Store and they will only sell the non-moddable Doom 3 BFG Edition from now on.

Biker - your word!

In a twisted way this pleased me, as we will no longer have to deal with steam, either internally or when trying to help new users.(But then we have Mr Tibbs post, which is amusing in itself "a couple of months they say"... bah)

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In a twisted way this pleased me, as we will no longer have to deal with steam, either internally or when trying to help new users.(But then we have Mr Tibbs post, which is amusing in itself "a couple of months they say"... bah)

 

I find this very problematic as steam was an easy way to get D3 cheap and legally. Now that option is gone, it will hurt TDM most grieviously. If people can't get the correct D3, they will not be able to get into TDM. This will make standalone even more imperative. Also, the appearance of this BFG edition can increase overall confusion among newbies a lot and my recommendation is to immediately check our wiki/etc instructions that they say BFG edition will NOT work!

 

Since v1.08 TDM didn't even use the steam platform (ie, it now does not start via steam as it used to before 1.08). Let's really hope the original D3 comes back to steam store!

Clipper

-The mapper's best friend.

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So once the source for BFG is out, will you guys try to incorporate any code into Doom 3, or would porting it to the BFG edition of the engine be more feasible?

 

I feel TDM could benifit greatly from how much better the engine runs - unless you guys have your own tricks up your sleeve for engine optimizations and multicore support.

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It would be much better to import snippets from BFG into our own code & shoot for standalone TDM.

 

Yep, the amount of work required to port all of our stuff into a different engine would be staggering but pulling a few optimizations out of the BFG engine might prove far more manageable. The binary file system would be great for decreasing load times, as well as the multi-core support. They should essentially be the same engines, give or take, so hopefully it won't be too difficult to port these enhancements into the engine...should save us a lot of guess work.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hmmm, been looking through it for the last hour, some very nicely cleaned up stuff, a lot of what I expected with regards to resource management. Annoyingly it makes my current re-organization either useless, or a lot of redundant work on the way. Will be way too tricky to do a 3 way merge otherwise :/

 

Some parts I'm very keen to get in tho :)

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The more I casually browse through it, the less interesting much of it seems. There's some stuff which will be worthwhile to pilfer, but for the most part it seems a bit alien and out of place for the old engine. Even things like dmap seem to be completely missing - while I guess I might just be missing something and it could have been renamed, I'm just not so sure there's much worthwhile stuff here. Overall, streamlined for a single platform commercial release, but not much more.

 

The shader release is quite nice, havent looked at the render too closely but perhaps we can at least try get their glsl render working, otherwise maybe mix something up with Dante.

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The more I casually browse through it, the less interesting much of it seems. There's some stuff which will be worthwhile to pilfer, but for the most part it seems a bit alien and out of place for the old engine. Even things like dmap seem to be completely missing - while I guess I might just be missing something and it could have been renamed, I'm just not so sure there's much worthwhile stuff here. Overall, streamlined for a single platform commercial release, but not much more.

 

The shader release is quite nice, havent looked at the render too closely but perhaps we can at least try get their glsl render working, otherwise maybe mix something up with Dante.

 

What about the binary file format that they used to package all the maps? It cut my loading time by 2/3's.

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What about the binary file format that they used to package all the maps? It cut my loading time by 2/3's.

 

Haven't looked at the source, but as Serpentine say, if dmap is missing... Plus, if we change to a binary format, we might either completely change the entire workflow for mappers, or convert a lot of assets. If we are unlucky, both.

 

Even worse, we either have to support both formats (to load old FMs), or convert all FMs (how long such a simple conversation takes see for the I18N effort where we still haven't replaced our FMs with the new versions for whatever reasons it is holding off).

 

The loading times sound promising, but they come at a huge cost.

 

I think we can do some tricks, tho. Compressing normals reduces the data read during loading by like 30%, that alone will probably cut loading times by 10..20% (the slower the disk, the more time it will cut). Loading 2 Gbyte assets for a mission does take some time, no matter how you do it. Reducing this by 500 Mbyte will help.

 

Maybe we can see if we can streamline a few other things without having to change everything. Like memory allocation, or the entire "spawn one entity, then spawn another and do ridiculous amounts of checking during each spawn". In the past we had often situations where each entity spawn f.i. posted some "events to do later", this is bound to use a lot of CPU time for some simple things.

 

id can pull such tricks as the binary format, because they don't have to support any mods, FMs, or anything else, they just tell their internal mappers "this is your new workflow, get used to it. good luck". We are not so lucky.

 

Edit: I also think we parse each map twice, just to load the shop items. Parsing 50 Mbyte text is bound to cost some time. There are probably other low-hanging fruits we can grab and fix now that we have the source and no longer need to play by the existing API rules. Instead now we can bend it. Imagine, there is no spoon :)

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man." -- George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

 

"Remember: If the game lets you do it, it's not cheating." -- Xarax

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