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I am curious if the 2D backgrounds will be finalised (pre-rendered + touched + post-processed) in a single high resolution and then downscaled either by the engine or come pre-downscaled by Obsidian for lower resolutions OR, finalised in several for a range of resolutions. Surely, this being 2012 and the limitations of IE games being apparent now (namely the resolution inflexibility), I thought perhaps they would opt for a more compatible and maybe even future-proof method than locking the scenes to a single resolution for everyone, regardless of their choice of (or their monitors') resolutions, kind of as though the game were entirely 3D. It would only be common sense at this age. For those wondering, some of the theoretical differences between various methods would be: (0) 2D backgrounds or scenes are made in 3D and then pre-rendered to 2D with best lighting and other effects, then the 2D image is shopped and likely post-processed (in-game effects) for the best result. This is how the backgrounds in all Infinity Engine games were made. They are not 2D artworks as in hand-painted but 3D scenes pre-rendered to 2D images and processed. (1) 2D scenes finalised in a single high resolution and then downscaled by the engine for lower resolutions. + Least amount of work for Obsidian + Smaller file size to download / to ship in discs - High resolution images potential (and very likely) memory hogs, especially for older or low end systems - Quality of downscaling dependent on a number of things (system configuration, drivers) - Loss of detail due to downscaling (2) 2D scenes finalised in a single high resolution and then downscaled by Obsidian for a range of resolutions. + Still reasonably low amount of work for Obsidian + Consistent image quality per resolution across systems + Theoretically the best performance per resolution - Much larger file size to download / to ship in discs - Loss of detail due to downscaling (3) 2D scenes finalised for a range of resolutions + Best image quality per resolution possible + Theoretically the best performance per resolution - Much larger file size to download / to ship in discs - More work for Obsidian (though I'm not certain just how much more: it might be as simple as using presets to do all the adjustments, except several times per resolution, or maybe not) I would just like to know what Obsidian has planned regarding this. And onto my second related subject: I was wondering how feasible it would be for Obsidian to give us an option to rotate the scenes by 90°, essentially meaning that every scene or location would have to be pre-rendered and post-processed four times to get four 2D images of it which we could then quickly switch between to get the best view to our liking. Apart from the budget/time cost of the procedure itself, I believe that the actual scene data itself would be pretty easy to adapt because essentially, they will already be creating 3D scenes (Unity 3D Engine + 3D models for characters) with just the 2D backgrounds and the necessary graphical features to blend the two aesthetically. So basically, I'm just asking: is this something you at Obsidian have ever considered or are still considering? It would only enhance the game, you know, freeing you of the limitations of locked-view and after all, anyone who has played any IE game has to have, at some point, bitched about obstructions. They did this in Commandos 2 & 3 (both 2D games) to great effect. See it in practice: More: As for the toll it would take on Obsidian; take everything I said above about resolutions and multiply it by four. But it would be swell if they did this.
While the gameplay trailer looked just as gorgeous as I had hoped given the decision to go with 2D backgrounds. One thing that I'm not sure about yet is the look of the water though. Maybe it's all pre-alpha and I just should stop worrying but let's take a look at the three scenes where water is most prominently featured in the trailer. The water looks very different in all three of these scenes and I definitely like the first one the least while the second one looks pretty good actually. Of course the hard pixely edges of the foreground columns contributes its share to make the water stick out in the first screenshot but actually I'm not convinced this is the only reason. It just looks too "3D" to me. Any thoughts?
Here's a short overview of the graphics style and technology used in some of the existing cPRG's that are often mentioned on the forum, followed by what we know (or can assume) so far about what Project Eternity will use. Maybe this can help clear up some confusion... BG, BG2, IWD, IWD2, PS:T, Fallout, ToEE, ... camera: projection/viewpoint: isometric (diagonal top-down) rotating: no zooming: no graphics: background (terrain/structures): 2D images (pre-rendered from high-quality 3D, and retouched by hand) animated objects (fountains/machines/...): 2D animations (pre-rendered "flipbooks") environmental effects (light & shadows, rain, ...): 2D effects (using various tricks like blending pre-rendered light-maps) spells: 2D animations (pre-rendered "flipbooks") characters: 2D animations (pre-rendered "flipbooks") NWN, DA:O, KotOR, ME, Fallout:NV, ... camera: projection/viewpoint: perspective (one or more of: first-person, follow, diagonal top-down, manual, ...) rotating: yes zooming: yes graphics: everything: 3D terrain & models & animations/effects (real-time rendered on the user's graphics card) Project Eternity camera: projection/viewpoint: isometric (diagonal top-down) rotating: no zooming: ? graphics: background (terrain/structures): 2D images (pre-rendered from high-quality 3D, and retouched by hand) animated objects (fountains/machines/...): 2D (pre-rendered "flipbooks") and/or 3D animations (case-by-case decision) environmental effects (light & shadows, rain, ...): 3D effects (blended together with the 2D graphics) spells: 3D animations/effects characters: 3D models Note that this is merely based on what I have heard so far from developer posts & interviews, so no warranty on the correctness of the above information. If you see a mistake or have something to add, post a reply. A comment from one of the developers, as to whether I interpreted their statements correctly, would of course be appreciated as well.
i still dont catch if the game will be 2D like BD2 or 3D like neverwinter nights 1 or 3D like neverwinter nights 2 this is very important, i like the way nwn2 works cus we can get nice isometric look and we can close up the camera to the companions to see in details how they are