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Default Is this really the right type of engine?

November 9th, 2006, 16:03
I am not trying to Troll or anything, I would really like to know, I mean if Bioware can't afford an engine that is cappable of decent Animations and AI, who can?

I mean even with a topdown view point and turn based, it just seems there are so many better engines.
While I haven't used the editor, is it possible that this engine just provides easy usage for Modders?

I am no expert but isn't even the Quake 3 and Unreal 2003 much better looking, performing and more Mod friendly, not to mention almost Freeware at 4 years old?

Maybe the Devs are just so use to this engine and decided to push it farther?

Why are the trying to add such detailed mapping to such a low performing engine?
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November 9th, 2006, 16:11
Well, my NWN2 looks better than any game I have using the Q3 (Star Trek Elite Force II was best looking on that engine) or the UT engine (Unreal 2 … Postal 2).

But where I agree with you is that the performance to computer power ratio is pretty crappy. When I look at the HL2-Source engine based games (HL2 & Ep 1, SiN, Dark Messiah) and even, yes, Oblivion compared to my experience in NWN2 and what I hear about Gothic 3, the optimization is quite lacking.

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November 9th, 2006, 16:26
Actually I don't think the engine has much to do with animations, and certainly very little to do with AI.

Poor performance compared to similarly-pretty engines is a valid concern though. Some of that is to do with the modability, though nothing like the extent that Morrowind and Oblivion had that problem (lack of pre-compiling meaning that you can't back cull easily), NWN2 at least has partial compiling with the 'bake' option. However it's nothing like Source or UE which do a vast amount of compilation and pre-rendering of lighting.
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November 9th, 2006, 22:45
Yeah I was worried about using Quake 3 as an example, especially when it came to AI, though I really thought Unreal engine was better.
Anyway it was mostly to make a point, not based on absoulte accuracy.

And don't bring up Unreal 2 , Epic jacked Legend Entertainment and the Unreal fans with that UT crap.

Hell, Legend's first game Wheel of Time had more depth in any single charater of the game, than the every charater in whole Unreal 2 game, hell even add in "the lack of dept in the whole game" in that formula and WoT still wins hands down.

I asked, Cliffy "I killed Coop" B, on Blues about why they had abandoned Coop when the first UT came out in 1999.
He was diplomaticly full of crap and saying something to the effect, "It was too hard to script Coop and adding spawn points."
Now 8 years later "I killed Coop" is making a fricking Coop game for consoles, poor guy must be really suffering coding all that Coop stuff, Jerkoff!

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November 10th, 2006, 06:34
I'll never understand why no one has tried to make an updated Infinity engine. Call me biased, but no other D&D games have ever quite lived up to the standard that Baldurs Gate set.

Having said that, the main reason I didn't like the first NWN was because you could only have a couple npc's with you at a time, and you couldn't even control them.
To me that's not D&D. It was more like a 3d Diablo.
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November 10th, 2006, 10:41
Well to save you from looking in the Spoliers section I just posted how make NWN 2 a full party game, instead of the 3 companions in Chapt 1, 4 Companions in Chapt 2 and 5 Compainions in Chapt 3, you can get up to 5 Companions from the begining as so as you can find that many.
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November 10th, 2006, 11:20
The infinity engine was 2D. There's no money in that anymore, and any game in full 3D(NWN2 is just 2,5D, but I expect this kind of graphics to be dying) will look and feel different than any game in IE.
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November 10th, 2006, 11:37
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I'll never understand why no one has tried to make an updated Infinity engine. Call me biased, but no other D&D games have ever quite lived up to the standard that Baldurs Gate set.
Well, ToEE and Lionheart both have gorgeous 2D engines. One of them reminds us that there is more to a great game than a nice looking engine

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November 10th, 2006, 13:33
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I'll never understand why no one has tried to make an updated Infinity engine.
They did. It was called Lionheart and totally bummed
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November 10th, 2006, 14:27
At least pathfinding is usually a part of the engine. I have to agree that in NWN2 it sucks like a tornado. The rest of the AI isn't actually that bad; it's more that the interface used to command it is a bit incomplete.

Simple fixes I'd like to see:
+ Quickbar broadcast (and single-character) commands.
+ Make broadcast commands affect the entire party. Now things get munged up if you broadcast and then switch control of characters — most often the previous character you controlled just stands around.
+ Use the "distance" setting to control character mobility in combat. "Stay close" means "don't rush off to the other side of the screen even if you see a high-priority target" and "keep your distance" means the opposite.

A slightly (but not much) more complex fix I'd like to see:
+ Allow me to set target priority for AI characters: weakest first/strongest first, and prioritize spellcaster-missile-tank. So I could set, for example, my archer to spellcaster-tank-missile, my spellcaster to spellcaster-missile-tank, and my tank to tank-spellcaster-missile.

But yeah, the pathfinding has got to improve first. At the very least it should be able to handle a freakin' *door.*
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November 10th, 2006, 14:41
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
Well, ToEE and Lionheart both have gorgeous 2D engines. One of them reminds us that there is more to a great game than a nice looking engine
I really enjoyed TOEE, despite its flaws, it was a fun game. It would have been a lot better if they had made it cover more area than just 1 big dungeon.
I also wish they had included an option for pseudo-real time combat like BG, but I guess that would have taken a lot more work to include both options.

I tried the demo for Lionheart and didn't really care for it. It seemed like a solid game but it just didn't pull me in.
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November 10th, 2006, 14:49
I'm not sure why people think NWN2's problems are because of Aurora. Its the realtime dynamic lighting, shadows and shaders Obsidian implemented. Remember when Bethesda dropped object shadows in Oblivion right before release?

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November 10th, 2006, 14:49
I actually enjoyed it until I was in the midst of Montaillou, by which point the game was total hack n slash and never recovered. But Barcelona was very well done and I got ~20 good hours (and many more mediocre hours) out of the game. And since as I said I got it in a bundle with Arcanum & PoR2 for $11 … I can't complain

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November 10th, 2006, 14:56
Oh PoR2? What a great game.

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November 10th, 2006, 14:59
Someday I vow to play Arcanum

I've had that game for almost 4 years. In fact, I just recently took out the box and was looking at it.

*sigh*…..so many games….
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November 10th, 2006, 15:02
I loaded up Arcanum recently. The fixed resolution of 800x600 is a bummer. Graphics certainly arent everything but they were really painful. Then the combat - at least in realtime mode was running at such hyperactive speeds it was a horror show.

I was just testing it though - I do plan on giving it a solid shake since so many praise it.

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November 10th, 2006, 15:08
Look around, there may be a patch to up the resolution.
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November 10th, 2006, 15:35
Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
Oh PoR2? What a great game.
Someone should make a thread about it

Originally Posted by ToddMcF2002 View Post
I loaded up Arcanum recently. The fixed resolution of 800x600 is a bummer. Graphics certainly arent everything but they were really painful. Then the combat - at least in realtime mode was running at such hyperactive speeds it was a horror show.
I never expected anything better than BG graphically and therefore wasn't disappointed - but then despite being a FPS-graphics-ho I am perfectly satisfied playing SpiderWeb Software games as well. Arcanum looks fine to me, and I use the turn-based system and find the combat and music are just wonderful.

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November 10th, 2006, 16:47
I do find the engine (or implementation of that engine) in NWN2 to be quite characterless. There isn't much animation for the characters and you don't lose anything by playing fully zoomed out and an over head view. Character generation was lacking as well. Most races have 5 faces and a bunch of ugly hair, how am I supposed to identify with a character I think is a dork?

The scenery looks nice though but not Oblivion nice. Oblivion was the first game to actually make my wife stand behind me and comment on the vista looking out from a mountain.

I am having a lot of fun with NWN2 though. I loved TOEE for the big fights. I must have made a dozens of different parties and taken them through the big fight at the mill just to see how they performed. Once I started to micro manage the party in NWN2 the big fights are becoming more fun. With the AI and pathing you really need to pause often to get your rogue in position, make sure the tank isn't running off and the casters are doing something sensible rather than chugging potions. Once that is sorted the battles can be fun
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November 10th, 2006, 17:36
I think real problem why NWN2 exploit system resources, original Aura engine is an old engine and do not support new graphical technologies like bumb mapping, parallax mapping, normal mapping etc. When they have tried to implement these to an old engine, results are generally not very good. For ex, Thief 3 had been built on old Unreal engine which did not support bump mapping.
But, doing an RPG engine from scratch is very hard and time consuming; so using already a successfull engine and make improvements on it so simple.
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