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shmerl

Technical plans for Pillars of Eternity II (engine and etc.)

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Can you please share some of your plans for the engine of Pillars of Eternity II.

 

  • Are you going to use Unity 5?
  • What about Vulkan?
  • Is it going to be 64-bit on Linux? Please, please avoid 32-bit mess that happened with Tyranny, i.e. failures on large XFS partitions because of not switching on Large File Support.

 

Thanks!

Edited by shmerl
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Vulkan isn't a game engine, Unity is. The question then would be does Unity use Vulkan? I assume they are staying with Unity, looking at the screenshots I don't see differences. 

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Vulkan isn't a game engine, Unity is. The question then would be does Unity use Vulkan? I assume they are staying with Unity, looking at the screenshots I don't see differences. 

 

Unity allows using both OpenGL and Vulkan now. I think it's up to developer whether to utilize the later. Thus my question. Unless it's just an option in settings and either one can be used?

Edited by shmerl

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I would be incredibly hesitant to think they will switch engines in anyway, thinking it might be borderline just not happening here. With Pillars made, they have an incredible array of tools now available to them, that they also understand. I am pretty sure because of this and not having to redesign a system from the ground up like with Pillars this will only be a positive moving forward because they can focus solely on content and the story.

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Switching might be not, but using newer Unity, should be a good option. Unity 4 is pretty old already, and has performance issues.

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I'd say it's a fair assumption they migrated to Unity 5.

 

What about 32-bit? Tyranny regressed to be 32-bit, despite PoE I being 64-bit release.

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You would think game devs would use newer engines, but they usually just extend old ones. There's so many games that are Unreal "2.5" and "3.5" that are heavily modified, to the point they might even have virtual feature parity with the newer engines.

 

Minimum specs were too low for PoE, I hope they're more reasonable for PoE 2, so they don't have to cut things down like the random encounters at the stronghold.

 

Most importantly I hope with the new streaming feature the perplexing saving and loading performance issues are gone, because with 16GB of RAM, a SSD, a 6 core Intel CPU, it shouldn't be that painful.

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Looks like 64-bit Linux release is planned, if I understood correctly from Fig comments:

 

 

MikeyDowling developer:

I actually answered this late last night, but yes, we will absolutely want to support the 64-bit Linux as we did in the original Pillars.

 

I hope it means real 64-bit release. Tyranny kind of supports 64-bit Linux too, but the game itself is 32-bit, and because of that has quite serious bugs when used on 64-bit Linux.

Edited by shmerl
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Unity 5 confirmed in Fig comments.

 

The question, however, is which Unity 5 release.

Tyranny uses 5.3.5p3, which is still bugged with the FMOD issue on Linux. They need to update to at least Unity 5.4. Or perhaps ask the Unity people to supply them with an earlier release that has the FMOD fix applied.

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Cloaks should work on Linux this time:

 

@Feargus: By the way, will cloaks work on Linux this time around?

Feargus [developer]
I'm going to go out on a limb and say yes, because I am pretty sure we've gone with a completely different system.

 

Feargus [developer]
We have gone with a totally different rendering system for cloaks, so you are all good on Linux.

Edited by shmerl

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Cool - finally some cloaks for the fashion fascist (=me). ;)

Edited by Boeroer
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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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@TheRealDrMcCoy: Did you ask about FMOD in the Fig comments?

 

No. I can't comment on the Fig campaign, because I haven't backed. I have no credit card; I need a PayPal option. And if that's not integrated with Fig, I won't be able to comment there then either (same as with Kickstarter).

 

On the other hand, my money is rather tight at the moment, so maybe it's better I can't back... :p

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I can relay your question. Now developers seem to be more focused on Fig, so they aren't likely to pay attention to the forum.

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No. I can't comment on the Fig campaign, because I haven't backed.

 

 

Just got a response:

 

Feargus [developer]
[unity 5.4] - We've moved up to Unity 5.4, plus we are using Wwise engine for Pillars II - not sure if that has to work in conjunction with FMOD.
 
[Vulkan renderer] I do not believe we are using the Vulkan renderer, but we are very fortunate to have had two very, very Senior Graphics Engineers working on Pillars II. We will be doing a big tech update at some point to show all the stuff the have done - it's pretty crazy.
Edited by shmerl
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Just got a response:

 

Thanks for asking! :)

 

Feargus [developer]

 

[unity 5.4] - We've moved up to Unity 5.4, plus we are using Wwise engine for Pillars II - not sure if that has to work in conjunction with FMOD.

Ah, okay, Wwise. Hmmkay.

 

(

As for the second part of that sentence: no, it does not. Wwise does exactly the same conceptually as FMOD (they're direct competitors), they usually don't have to work in conjuction. Or rather, it usally even makes no sense whatsoever to use both of them.

 

Going for the common car analogy: think of one as a diesel engine, one as a gasoline engine. They both do the same thing, burning fuel to provide motion (*). There's some subtle differences, but unless you build a car (and ignoring filling up the tank), you don't need to know about it. Both are valid options. And it usually makes no sense to have a car with both engines.

 

(*) Or in this case, providing audio with some light scripting capabilities and filter chains. Multiple sounds are grouped in banks that can be loaded/unloaded as a group, there's "events" that play a number of sounds, with effects applied and states that can change what is done on which event. Both FMOD and Wwise do that, as far as I know.

)

 

Let's just hope that the Linux version of Wwise isn't as bad as FMOD. Middleware is commonly a sore point for porting, with uncommon official ports of middleware often rather bad and buggy.

Edited by TheRealDrMcCoy

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@TheRealDrMcCoy: Wwise seems like mess when you are trying to extract audio from the game. As you said, it's using banks (see an example here). How did games manage in the past not to complicate things and use simple audio files?

 

Though Wwise seems to work OK on Linux. Check the same System Shock demo that I was talking about in the link above.

Edited by shmerl

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@TheRealDrMcCoy: Wwise seems like mess when you are trying to extract audio from the game. As you said, it's using banks (see an example here).

 

Well, so does FMOD, .fsb files (fmod sound bank, I guess). There are FLOSS extractors for both FMOD and Wwise sound banks. Wwise's ones are a bit more complicated, I think, because they do something weird with the Ogg Stream inside their banks, while FMOD is a bit more straight-forward (except they use non-standard codec value in the RIFF headers for ADPCM'd files).

 

Or at least that's what happened in FMOD/Wwise in Dragon Age: Origins (FMOD) and Dragon Age II (Wwise). Might be later versions of FMOD/Wwise change that, dunno.

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There are FLOSS extractors for both FMOD and Wwise sound banks. Wwise's ones are a bit more complicated, I think, because they do something weird with the Ogg Stream inside their banks, while FMOD is a bit more straight-forward (except they use non-standard codec value in the RIFF headers for ADPCM'd files).

 

I used this one for Wwise: https://github.com/eXpl0it3r/bnkextr

But resulted file also required re-encoding, since it wasn't a regular WAV, but also unusually encoded raw RIFF. sox helps for that. See an example here.

Edited by shmerl

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