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I have a question about the backgrounds for the game; 2d/3d?


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Josh Sawyer mentions in one of the Kickstarter updates that the background are 2D, and then proves it by rotating the view in the engine. :-

ProjectEternity_zps03dc8109.gif

So are the backgrounds really 2D, or was that unintentionally misleading on his part?  I of course get it, that he meant that cliffs, bridge, and the statues are not mesh shapes, but rendered textures... but it sure looks like they are mapped to a plane in 3D space; or am I mistaken?

 

Are they using object normal map tricks for dynamic shading of the background plane, to make it seem a more complex shape than it is? The results are breath taking; but I'm curious of what will be needed from the potential modder planning to add an area into the game.  Will prospective modders need to have a full 3D map to render, and render its object normals in order to have the same quality of lighting and shadows as the official area backgrounds.  It doesn't seem like a traditional 2D artist could load a painting as a background and get that kind of shadowing from the light sources; or is it some sort of 'Riven-esque' AVI overlays that allow the lighting effects?
 

Edited by Gizmo
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Yes, they exist in 3D space (because ultimately the entire game is rendered in 3D space), but all of the area data is stored in 2D images.  I go into detail about how the maps are broken down in my GDC talk here (on the sidebar, click on "Making 2D/3D Environments...")

 

http://gdcvault.com/play/1019680/Gathering-Your-Party-with-Project

 

Unfortunately, it would be difficult and time-consuming for modders to generate their own maps.  They would absolutely need to be built in 3D and then rendered; you need the depth and normal information for occlusion and dynamic lighting, respectively.

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Yes, they exist in 3D space (because ultimately the entire game is rendered in 3D space), but all of the area data is stored in 2D images.  I go into detail about how the maps are broken down in my GDC talk here (on the sidebar, click on "Making 2D/3D Environments...")

 

http://gdcvault.com/play/1019680/Gathering-Your-Party-with-Project

 

Unfortunately, it would be difficult and time-consuming for modders to generate their own maps.  They would absolutely need to be built in 3D and then rendered; you need the depth and normal information for occlusion and dynamic lighting, respectively.

Thanks very much for the direct reply.  Building the map is not a problem, and sounds fun; Blender is free, and can bake that as textures... (Of course, I'd have to actually see a level and its parts to truly know the extent of the task.)

 

It would be wonderful if someone at Obsidian (afterwards), can post an intermediate overview of the process... not necessarily an in depth tutorial in steps, but in general.  

 

** Great video! (and answers a lot.  8)  )

Edited by Gizmo
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Yes, they exist in 3D space (because ultimately the entire game is rendered in 3D space), but all of the area data is stored in 2D images.  I go into detail about how the maps are broken down in my GDC talk here (on the sidebar, click on "Making 2D/3D Environments...")

 

http://gdcvault.com/play/1019680/Gathering-Your-Party-with-Project

 

Unfortunately, it would be difficult and time-consuming for modders to generate their own maps.  They would absolutely need to be built in 3D and then rendered; you need the depth and normal information for occlusion and dynamic lighting, respectively.

 

can/will we get some more detailed information/documentation on those 5 maps please (: ?

(e.g. seperate difuse map, i presume, is used for dinamic light colour tinting, and those black-green bands on the 'depth' map - are they z-planes, height planes, something else?)

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. not necessarily an in depth tutorial in steps 

 

You're wrong. Complete tutorial will be super helpful.

 

A complete tutorial ~if actually needed, probably won't be used; and certainly won't be something they will want to spend the necessary time on; not when they could be working on their next project instead.

 

*If they release an intermediate or high level overview that shows just enough for an experienced modder understand it... then in depth user created low-level tutorials will come of it.

Edited by Gizmo
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Anybody attempting this should know what they're doing, they shouldn't need a complete tutorial only the specifications for importing them into the engine. I don't understand the need for more information on the maps because apart from the depth map they look completely standard, and I'd bet that the banding on the depth map is height contours of the terrain.

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I don't understand the need for more information on the maps because apart from the depth map they look completely standard, and I'd bet that the banding on the depth map is height contours of the terrain.

 

They do not. Just look at the dynamic lighting.

And I'd bet that modders would much rather have at least a few guidelines written out from a reliable source, than what a random person on the internet feels confident enough to even figuratively bet on it.

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I just wonder about whether Obsidian (I almost called you guys Black Isle for a second...) would be willing to share this information because afterall they spent a lot of time and money perfecting this technology and it can be considered "IP" for them. Coca-Cola doesn't share its recipe either.

 

Or their dialogue creator.  They've bragged several times about how awesome it is, and I doubt the share it (although they could probably make quite a bit of money selling it as a 3rd party tool).

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They do not. Just look at the dynamic lighting.

 

 

Look at the video with the 5 maps... they are.

 

And I'd bet that modders would much rather have at least a few guidelines written out from a reliable source, than what a random person on the internet feels confident enough to even figuratively bet on it.

I'm sure modders will be able to figure it out themselves when they get their hands on the files... at least as far as the maps are concerned.

 

Coca-Cola doesn't share its recipe either.

That recipe is marketing.

Edited by AwesomeOcelot
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They do not. Just look at the dynamic lighting.

 

 

Look at the video with the 5 maps... they are.

 

No need. I can just look at what Mr. Sawyer has written. Just. In. This. Thread.

 

 

And I'd bet that modders would much rather have at least a few guidelines written out from a reliable source, than what a random person on the internet feels confident enough to even figuratively bet on it.

I'm sure modders will be able to figure it out themselves when they get their hands on the files... at least as far as the maps are concerned.

 

And I'm sure that modders would much rather have at least a few guidelines written out from a reliable source, despite a random person on the internet feeling sure, that some bright bulb somewhere, someday will figure out some hopefully good approximation.

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Anybody attempting this should know what they're doing, they shouldn't need a complete tutorial only the specifications for importing them into the engine. I don't understand the need for more information on the maps because apart from the depth map they look completely standard, and I'd bet that the banding on the depth map is height contours of the terrain.

 

Each pixel in the depth map indicates its depth from the camera, which is then used for per-pixel occlusion on the effects and objects in the scene.

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Anybody attempting this should know what they're doing, they shouldn't need a complete tutorial only the specifications for importing them into the engine. I don't understand the need for more information on the maps because apart from the depth map they look completely standard, and I'd bet that the banding on the depth map is height contours of the terrain.

 

Each pixel in the depth map indicates its depth from the camera, which is then used for per-pixel occlusion on the effects and objects in the scene.

 

 

Like a "1 - height" map, or the working distance of the detector for the electron microscopy folks.. (there's a lot of ya'll, RIGHT?!!?)

Edited by agris
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Yes, they exist in 3D space (because ultimately the entire game is rendered in 3D space), but all of the area data is stored in 2D images.  I go into detail about how the maps are broken down in my GDC talk here (on the sidebar, click on "Making 2D/3D Environments...")

 

http://gdcvault.com/play/1019680/Gathering-Your-Party-with-Project

 

Unfortunately, it would be difficult and time-consuming for modders to generate their own maps.  They would absolutely need to be built in 3D and then rendered; you need the depth and normal information for occlusion and dynamic lighting, respectively.

 

Eh, modders do "time consuming" things by definition. They did it fine for Baldur's Gate 2, I'm sure they'll do fine for PE.

 

I'm just glad the idea for dynamic lighting worked out well. I always get nervous when coming up with such things, worrying that I sound too much like a babbling idiot, though I try not to project it. But the game looks great!

Edited by Frenetic Pony
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  • 2 weeks later...

 

Anybody attempting this should know what they're doing, they shouldn't need a complete tutorial only the specifications for importing them into the engine. I don't understand the need for more information on the maps because apart from the depth map they look completely standard, and I'd bet that the banding on the depth map is height contours of the terrain.

 

Each pixel in the depth map indicates its depth from the camera, which is then used for per-pixel occlusion on the effects and objects in the scene.

 

That was the recipe for Cola right there. :D

 

Neat use of depth-maps. Did this idea come from a photo-editing perspective, or from a 3d-rendering perspective? I mean, it's the kind of thing you would use to create terrain in 3d-worlds and so on.. but..

The injustice must end! Sign the petition and Free the Krug!

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  • 2 months later...

Firstly I am huge fan of Obsidian and their old games, backed and looking forward to this game.

 

But had to chime in as this technology is hardly new, its not something they came up with it was here for some time already. So no recipe for Cola needed :) For example this guy 

did it few years back and explains it for you even on his blog.
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It would be great if there's only a height map, normal map, bump map and specular map involved, just like in the video posted above. As there's a lot of free tools that can automate the creation of such maps directly from the 3D model. So in the end, it all boils down to creating the 3D environment and then using those tools to create the maps. However, you'd probably need to hand-paint the collision map.

 

I just hope the tools used for level editing used by the developers will be available eventually. Placing npcs and light sources by code is a pain in the ass.

Edited by Zwiebelchen
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It would be great if there's only a height map, normal map, bump map and specular map involved, just like in the video posted above. As there's a lot of free tools that can automate the creation of such maps directly from the 3D model. So in the end, it all boils down to creating the 3D environment and then using those tools to create the maps. However, you'd probably need to hand-paint the collision map.

 

I just hope the tools used for level editing used by the developers will be available eventually. Placing npcs and light sources by code is a pain in the ass.

On the first page of this thread there's a video from GDC where Josh shows the 5 maps they use.

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