Originally Posted by msxyz
No trolling, just facts. I'm not talking abut the game per se, rather its engine.
The lighting is great but the number of polygon is way too low for a modern game (look at Unreal2/UT200x for comparsion) and the surfaces quality is really poor. I've seen Quake3-based games with better textures.
It makes me wonder if this is the price to pay to have realistic, real-time shadows. I took this shot yesterday. Detail level was set to "quality", no specular.
I noticed the low res texture on that panel too. Ofcourse you zeroed in the THE lowest res texture in the entire game and posted it as a "typical" example. That texture seems to be an anomaly by the map creator since 99% of the textures in the game are higher res than that.
I wouldn't be suprised if on average the texture maps in Farcry are higher res than Doom 3, but thats not the point. Carmack took a whole different approach with the engine than the "more textures, more polys" mentality of the crytek and unreal teams. In those engines, most surfaces just have one texture map on them (yes I know Farcry has bump mapping in places, but most surfaces aren't). In Doom 3 almost every surface has a texture, specular and bump map. Thats three times as much texture data required per surface as with a normal engine. They COULD have put enough texture data in Doom 3 that the textures looked just as high res as Farcrys, however you would need a 384 meg card to run it in normal detail, 768 meg to run it in high, and a 1.5 gig card to run it ultra-high settings.
There will always be a trade off between flat high res texture surfaces, and lower res, bumpmapped and specular mapped surfaces. Its simply how you choose to spend the texture memory that you have. With Doom 3 the intent was to create a scary atmosphere so it made sense to concentrate more on shadows and lighting.
Anyway, for my review:
The game appears to be CPU limited on my PC. The framerate bounces around between 30 and 60 FPS. I tried lowering the res to 800x600 and it did squat to the frame rate. I have it running in high quality in 1024x768, 4Xaa, 4Xaf, on a 6800 GT, 1.5 meg of ram, and a P4 2.4 overclocked to 2.8. I've had no problems with my system being overclocked, I may even try bumping the CPU up a little further.
I personally think the graphics look awesome, but the sound is just as good. The two work together in such a way as they create a very atmospheric and immersive gaming experience, unlike any game i've played. The best graphics are on some of the machinery in the labs, I sometimes forget that i'm really watching a realtime rendering and not some pre-rendered thing. The enemies are nasty and I almost crapped my pants the first time I encountered a pinky demon and its ramming the door trying to get at me. The animation and behavior of the creatures really does a good job of making them seem incredibly aggressive and eager to slash you to pieces.
Its not a perfect game though, and there are a couple of things to mention...
The puzzles mostly consist of retrieving a PDA to get a code for a door. Although it hasn't bothered me yet, I am sure this will seem repetative the second time I play the game through.
The enemies are a little dumb, and not just the zombies. Sometimes you can deal with an imp by putting a pipe, box, edge of a wall between you and it, if you get it in the right spot it will just keep throwing fireballs and never hit you. The creatures are definately smarter than a game like Painkiller, but not quite as smart as those in Farcry.
The fact that you can't hold a weapon and the flashlight at the same time hasn't bothered me yet, though I see how it could. I'm sure the first community created mod will be the "ducttape" mod that allows you to tape your flashlight to the shotgun. Speaking of the flashlight, it looks cool, but its not a real light source (it doesn't cast shadows)... theres probably a console setting for that somewhere.