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jAkUp
03-24-05, 11:46 PM
http://www.g4tv.com/attackoftheshow/features/51399/Exclusive_New_HalfLife_2_Technology_.html

A New HL2 Level With New Lighting Technology Will Be Unveiled on Attack of the Show

One of biggest gaming stories of 2004 was the long-awaited release of Half-Life 2, which not only achieved “instant classic” status but also brandished bleeding-edge graphics and gameplay. And now, Attack of the Show will unveil a whole new level for Half-Life 2 that’ll give gamers a glimpse into the future of PC graphics.

On Wednesday’s show, Valve’s Doug Lombardi will give an exclusive demonstration of the previously unseen “The Lost Coast,” an upcoming expansion that utilizes a brand-new technology that Valve is implementing into the Source engine. Called “high-dynamic range lighting,” this new technology enables a leap in lighting realism from even the current high benchmark set by Half-Life 2 and the existing Source engine.

Tune in to see how the multiple “Game of the Year” award-winning Half-Life 2 will look even more life-like. For hardcore gamers, this is a must-see!

Wednesday, March 30 at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT

Edge
03-25-05, 02:42 AM
*sigh*, they sure are being misleading about this "new" feature. HDR is hardly a "lighting effect", they make it sound like they're adding Doom 3 quality dynamic lighting to the game or something. It actually amazes me that they're pimping out the Source engine as being so advanced when graphically it's about on the same level as the Unreal Engine 2/2.5 (worse in some ways). And I love the way they say it gives a glimpse of "future PC graphics" when it's been a feature in Farcry for over half a year now...

Oh well, hopefully this means they'll be releasing that Lost Coast pretty soon, I'm looking forward to seeing HDR in HL2 (even if it was a feature that was originally cut out).

fivefeet8
03-25-05, 03:17 AM
I'm wondering what type of HDR they will be using. Probably not the FP16 blending of the Nv4x cards.

jolle
03-25-05, 04:11 AM
It has been said that the "HDR" they showed in that BINK video a while ago before HL2 was released was 10bit Integer per component, softof like Matrox Gigacolor..
32bit color (24 bit RGB(8bit per channel) 8bit Alpha) = 0-255 per color
32bit color (30 bit RGB(10bit per channel) 2bit Alpha) = 0-1024 per color

That is regular 32bit and Gigacolor, dunno if Valves implementation was 32bit with a cut Alpha channel or what it is..
Since its a "special" map for it, it might be similar, cause of the low Alpha channel (which trees and such normally use) could be trouble for normal levels with alpha blending present..
Dunno tho, just speculating..

jbirney
03-25-05, 07:44 AM
It actually amazes me that they're pimping out the Source engine as being so advanced when graphically it's about on the same level as the Unreal Engine 2/2.5 (worse in some ways).

Thats not a fair statement since the U2/2.5 engine is a base DX7 with no PS effects higher than PS1.4 and thats only used to compress the terrain rendering to a single pass....

Edge
03-25-05, 12:37 PM
Thats not a fair statement since the U2/2.5 engine is a base DX7 with no PS effects higher than PS1.4 and thats only used to compress the terrain rendering to a single pass....
Isn't UE2.5 going to be adding many extra pixel shaders to the engine though? They're adding normal mapping support for surfaces and many other features. Also, HL2 is a "base DX7" engine as well, except that it requires pixel shaders for effects that the UE2 engine does without even using pixel shaders (such as vertex-based lighting and soft shadows). I'd say the engine that's more advanced is the one that's able to get the same image quality out of lesser hardware, wouldn't you? Not to mention the Source engine doesn't support volumetric fog or TRUE reflections like the U2 (hell, even U1) does.

Hmm, this is getting off-topic...maybe I should make a new thread on it?

superklye
03-25-05, 05:35 PM
Isn't UE2.5 going to be adding many extra pixel shaders to the engine though? They're adding normal mapping support for surfaces and many other features. Also, HL2 is a "base DX7" engine as well, except that it requires pixel shaders for effects that the UE2 engine does without even using pixel shaders (such as vertex-based lighting and soft shadows). I'd say the engine that's more advanced is the one that's able to get the same image quality out of lesser hardware, wouldn't you? Not to mention the Source engine doesn't support volumetric fog or TRUE reflections like the U2 (hell, even U1) does.

Hmm, this is getting off-topic...maybe I should make a new thread on it?
And let's not forget the 2D sprite fire in HL2, too... :rolleyes2

six_storm
03-25-05, 10:46 PM
I'll definitly be watching that episode!

|MaguS|
03-26-05, 06:15 AM
Not to mention the Source engine doesn't support volumetric fog or TRUE reflections like the U2 (hell, even U1) does.

Source can do Volumetric Fog and True Reflections, You can see the reflections done in "You Are Empty" screenshot (http://image.com.com/gamespot/images/2004/news/04/21/empty/empty_screen001.jpg) . While I can't find any fog shots, you can see the same effect on Dust where the little dust clouds float around, they are just controlled fog. It can be tweaked and hacked to make fog if you take the time.

Vagrant Zero
03-26-05, 08:15 AM
And let's not forget the 2D sprite fire in HL2, too... :rolleyes2

The fire in God of War [ps2 actioner] is better. That's just sad.

Gentle
03-26-05, 02:56 PM
Either I have the domain you have listed for that screenshot in my hosts file, or it truly is "empty".

Hah.

Can you post an alternative link to that picture?

Gentle

Banko
03-26-05, 03:48 PM
Source can do Volumetric Fog and True Reflections, You can see the reflections done in "You Are Empty" screenshot (http://image.com.com/gamespot/images/2004/news/04/21/empty/empty_screen001.jpg) . While I can't find any fog shots, you can see the same effect on Dust where the little dust clouds float around, they are just controlled fog. It can be tweaked and hacked to make fog if you take the time.

I don't think you are empty uses the Source engine.

anzak
03-26-05, 04:32 PM
Also, HL2 is a "base DX7" engine as well, except that it requires pixel shaders for effects that the UE2 engine does without even using pixel shaders (such as vertex-based lighting and soft shadows).

Since technology only builds onto it self, you could say that all engines are "base DX7". All game engines still use Hardware T&L along with pixel shaders.

Not to mention the Source engine doesn't support volumetric fog or TRUE reflections like the U2 (hell, even U1) does.

Now this is funny. These have been two features the source engine has boasted since 2003. I remember drooling over the screen shots in the August 2003 issue of Maximum PC which show off these features.

Edge
03-26-05, 05:52 PM
Since technology only builds onto it self, you could say that all engines are "base DX7". All game engines still use Hardware T&L along with pixel shaders.
Exactly, so I'm not sure why you're slamming one engine for being a "DX7-based" when they pretty much all are. The only difference is which ones take advantage of pixel shaders in better ways. And as I've mentioned, the Source engine uses pixel shaders mainly for things that have been done in other engines without needing pixel shader support at all, which is one of the reasons I can't understand why Source is being praised for it's heavy use of them.

Now this is funny. These have been two features the source engine has boasted since 2003. I remember drooling over the screen shots in the August 2003 issue of Maximum PC which show off these features.
Then where are they? We have HL2, but it's "fogging" is horrendous (the overhead mist in maps like Dust or Ravenholm are just 2d sprites, and they look extremely bizzare when you look up at them and rotate your view since the dust rotates WITH you), and the water doesn't properly reflect everything (such as 3d skyboxes or certain entities, take a look at where the Citadel's reflection should be on Water Hazard). Also the truely reflective water is only availible on DX9 hardware, while Unreal 1's reflections were DX6 based (edit: wait, they weren't even DX based, they were done in software...). And the closest thing Source has for fog is the light rays that stretch out from some windows like the ones in de_Train, but the way you go through them doesn't really make them seem like their volumetric like the fog in Unreal 1's intro is (hard to say though, but if the engine has support for true volumetric fog why wouldn't they have used it instead of 2d sprites in Ravenholm and Dust?). If the Source engine does support these features and they simply weren't used in HL2 though, then I wouldn't mind so much. It just bugged the hell out of me when I tried to make a HL2DM map set on an oil rig, yet none of my 3d skybox was reflected in the water no matter what settings I used or how I built my reflection map.

The Source engine has been one of the most heavilly talked about engines in a while, but as far as features go I haven't really seen anything impressive about it aside from the lip syncing system.

superklye
03-26-05, 11:25 PM
Exactly, so I'm not sure why you're slamming one engine for being a "DX7-based" when they pretty much all are. The only difference is which ones take advantage of pixel shaders in better ways. And as I've mentioned, the Source engine uses pixel shaders mainly for things that have been done in other engines without needing pixel shader support at all, which is one of the reasons I can't understand why Source is being praised for it's heavy use of them.


Then where are they? We have HL2, but it's "fogging" is horrendous (the overhead mist in maps like Dust or Ravenholm are just 2d sprites, and they look extremely bizzare when you look up at them and rotate your view since the dust rotates WITH you), and the water doesn't properly reflect everything (such as 3d skyboxes or certain entities, take a look at where the Citadel's reflection should be on Water Hazard). Also the truely reflective water is only availible on DX9 hardware, while Unreal 1's reflections were DX6 based. And the closest thing Source has for fog is the light rays that stretch out from some windows like the ones in de_Train, but the way you go through them doesn't really make them seem like their volumetric like the fog in Unreal 1's intro is (hard to say though, but if the engine has support for true volumetric fog why wouldn't they have used it instead of 2d sprites in Ravenholm and Dust?). If the Source engine does support these features and they simply weren't used in HL2 though, then I wouldn't mind so much. It just bugged the hell out of me when I tried to make a HL2DM map set on an oil rig, yet none of my 3d skybox was reflected in the water no matter what settings I used or how I built my reflection map.

The Source engine has been one of the most heavilly talked about engines in a while, but as far as features go I haven't really seen anything impressive about it aside from the lip syncing system.
And don't forget Alyx...the best feature of the engine. :-*

nVidiaGuru
03-27-05, 01:53 AM
Carmack pwnz all! its just that simple :)

Intel17
03-27-05, 06:55 AM
I hope it works on ATi cards!

superklye
03-27-05, 08:42 AM
I hope it works on ATi cards!
I hope the Lost Coast level isn't ATi only. :(

Morrow
03-27-05, 11:00 AM
I hope the Lost Coast level isn't ATi only. :(

It isn't. The only thing which would makes this level ATI only would be a vendor-id detection string upon starting the level... and this is pretty easy to circumvent.

superklye
03-27-05, 11:11 AM
It isn't. The only thing which would makes this level ATI only would be a vendor-id detection string upon starting the level... and this is pretty easy to circumvent.
Well yeah, it can be circumvented, but that isn't the point...if VALVe releases it as an ATi-only level, I will be quite pissed. It's just bad business.

If companies want to make a vendor specific game/level, release it for a console, not the PC. :mad:

Morrow
03-27-05, 02:50 PM
Well yeah, it can be circumvented, but that isn't the point...if VALVe releases it as an ATi-only level, I will be quite pissed. It's just bad business.

If companies want to make a vendor specific game/level, release it for a console, not the PC. :mad:

Valve can't do that. There is nothing a Radeon can do what a Geforce 6x00 can't. As I said the only way they could limit the level to ATI cards is by using a vendor id check routine but this can be circumvented...

The Lost Coast level will run on all high-end Radeon and Geforce cards because valve is not stupid enough to make themselves more enemies than needed and release it for ATI cards only.

superklye
03-27-05, 08:03 PM
Valve can't do that. There is nothing a Radeon can do what a Geforce 6x00 can't. As I said the only way they could limit the level to ATI cards is by using a vendor id check routine but this can be circumvented...

The Lost Coast level will run on all high-end Radeon and Geforce cards because valve is not stupid enough to make themselves more enemies than needed and release it for ATI cards only.
I think it's commendable that you have so much faith in VALVe, but they optimized the game for ATi cards (at least against the FX line) and are pretty much in ATi's pocket...and they were calling this level (and others) the "ATi levels" becuase they were speculated to be for ATi only.

Like I said, I know it can be circumvented, but that isn't the point. If VALVe releases them for ATi-only cards, it'll be a huge slap in the face. I don't think they're stupid enough to do it either, but then again...it IS VALVe.

And don't forget: they've been touting that the only way you can download/play the new levels is by meeting their "high-end card requirements" so they may, through Steam, require an ATi card and accept nothing else.

I hope to God they don't, but we'll have to see...

Rakeesh
03-28-05, 01:35 PM
I don't think they're stupid enough to do it either.

I do, they've done much worse before, on way more than one occasion.

six_storm
03-30-05, 11:09 AM
Well, the show is tonight and I'm gonna miss it :( . I hope they at least post the video on their web site for future viewing.

brady
03-30-05, 06:24 PM
doesnt look like its being posted on the web page. hopefully somebody takes the liberties of torrenting it or hosting it...