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Stormy Fairweather
09-15-2009, 03:00 PM
Hiya.

Just tried depths of peril and I have to say I was extremely impressed with alot of the ideas and thier implementation.

There were two gripes I have with the game, sufficiant enough to make me think I will never pass lvl 25. I am posting here 'cause I would like to see what you guys can do in the future and mebbe I can play yer next game past lvl 25 ;p.

Sprites. I really never understood why ALL new games went away from this art style, hell even Mario wears polygons nowadays, but in a game where the vantage does not change I see no benifit to polygons. They require more processing power and are less detailed. Frankly economy sprites look far better than economy polygons, and what a treat it would be for some to not have to wonder "can I run it?" (I am not one of them, my system is studly). Also sprites have a certain charm polygons will never capture. With the understanding yer engine is probably already finished and past the point where ye even could make it run off sprites, I just wanted to offer my thoughts on the subject.

And vantage. In depths of peril the angle over yer characters was about 75 degrees, and you had to zoom all the way out to see any distance at all. I found the angle intolerable. I think ye need to find a better one, one that lets you see further while still maintaining the overhead view enough obstacle do not obstruct vision.

Anyway, thems the thoughts of some random shmuck that found your game and admired the ideas, even if I was not able to get past the interface. Thanks for reading and looking forward to the new unnamed dungeon crawler.

Delilah Rehm
09-15-2009, 03:09 PM
Hi Stormy!

Just wondering, why can't you get past level 25? Did you reach a really hard zone? Sometimes when I have two groups of bosses AND scavengers, I avoid that zone for awhile. Maybe for the whole game! :)

Shadow
09-15-2009, 03:15 PM
Sprites. I really never understood why ALL new games went away from this art style, hell even Mario wears polygons nowadays, but in a game where the vantage does not change I see no benifit to polygons. They require more processing power and are less detailed. Frankly economy sprites look far better than economy polygons, and what a treat it would be for some to not have to wonder "can I run it?" (I am not one of them, my system is studly). Also sprites have a certain charm polygons will never capture. With the understanding yer engine is probably already finished and past the point where ye even could make it run off sprites, I just wanted to offer my thoughts on the subject.

I actually started out using sprites at the beginning. The biggest problem I ran into was you needed 8 sprites per animation frame because of the view point. If you run your animations at 20 frame per second, that's 160 sprites per second of animation. That gets big really, really fast.

I do agree with your point though. Sprites can look a lot better than polygons.

Welcome to the forums btw!

Stormy Fairweather
09-16-2009, 01:54 AM
Nah, not stuck delilah. I nerfed xp gain from quests as I felt I was levelling too fast, and restarted my warrior after lvl 20. The viewpoint just gives me a feeling of vertigo.

Shadow, thanks fer the welcome. Interesting that you had the same thought as me. Don't get me wrong, I seriously admire what you have done, and that you reply to people as well as listen. If the problem with all those frames is needing to have them drawn, just a thought but I wager yer following is large enough you can find a few artists.

Anywho, I likely will continue plugging away at DOP from time to time, though since I am also running my diablo mod, X3, Oblivion and FFTA2 my gaming time is pretty near used up (likely for the next five years XD) but I certainly will make time for this new game of yers.

Cheers.

Shadow
09-16-2009, 09:58 AM
Shadow, thanks fer the welcome. Interesting that you had the same thought as me. Don't get me wrong, I seriously admire what you have done, and that you reply to people as well as listen. If the problem with all those frames is needing to have them drawn, just a thought but I wager yer following is large enough you can find a few artists.

It's not a matter of getting them drawn. Many times sprites are modeled just like normal, but with much higher polycount and then are rendered as sprites. This makes it a lot easier to do all of the angles and make changes.

The real problem is that all of those sprites take up a lot of memory especially since you can't really do 8-bit color anymore.

I actually wish I had more artists approach me and wanted to do art for us. :) We get a constant flood of composers and a few programmers here and there, but very few artists.

Stormy Fairweather
09-16-2009, 10:26 AM
I think I may be in danger of learning something here, but...

So using spites may actually use more memory than polygons?

Sorry if I sound a fool here, I do have some programming background but zip for graphic design, but rendering sprites over polygons seems kinda silly. Like adding in another step.

If ye have the time and inclination I would not mind hearing an explanation, but do not put yerself out. There are plenty of resources available, if my curiosity gets strong enough I can look easily anough.

Shadow
09-16-2009, 11:56 AM
Sure. Basically as your resolution goes up sprites start taking up way more memory. This really does depend on the view point, the max resolution you support, whether or not you can use 8 bit color, the size of objects on the screen, how many animations you have, etc.

Let's use the Depths of Peril hulk as an example. We use 24 bit color, have an isometric viewpoint, can support whatever resolution you graphics card and monitor can support, and object can get pretty large on the screen.

The hulk has 8 animations with a total of 309 frames of animation.

If you used 128x96 sprites at 24 bit color (3 bytes), with 309 frames, with an isometric view (8 directions for each animation frame) the memory size would be 128 x 96 x 3 x 309 x 8 = 91,127,808 bytes or 86.91 MB

For the polygon version, the animations take up 246,188 bytes, the texture (a 256x256 texture in this case) takes up 196,652 bytes, the skeleton takes up 585 bytes, and the model takes up 44,084 bytes. Total = 487,509 bytes or 0.46 MB

So in this case the difference is the sprites are 86.45 MB bigger and that is just one monster.

These calculations don't take into account compression, the fact that if you want to use graphics hardware in general the textures should be powers of 2, and a 128x96 is probably way too small for some one that is running a game at 1600x1200. Actually for the hulk it is probably too small for some one running at 800x600.

Just as an aside, if you have a game that can have small icons, your view point is top down, and you don't have many frames of animation the calculation could be closer to this:
64 x 64 x 1 x 32 x 1 = 131,072 bytes or 0.13 MB

Stormy Fairweather
09-16-2009, 06:58 PM
Now you have done it. You gone and taught me something XD.

That does explain it, and now I actually understand why all games went polygons. Even running 8 bit color, mirroring 3 sides with coding rather than seperate images and skimping on the framerates the data size would be impractical with or without with compression.

Phooey. Here I was hoping one day to see the return of sprite style games. I really miss them. Well, I suppose there is always the DS.

Thanks alot Shadow. I appreciate ye taking the time to explain that to me. I know you have more interesting things to do than educate faceless names on the internet. I will be rooting for ya, and watching fer yer new title.

Take care.

Shadow
09-17-2009, 10:19 AM
No problem.

There really is no reason why people can't make sprite style games though. You probably just won't get the sprite part as much.

There are still situations where sprites can still work pretty well though. If you have few or no real animations like with things like spaceships, then sprites can work really well.

(name here)
09-19-2009, 06:11 PM
I also imagine they're used a lot for grid-based games.

ShaggyMoose
09-26-2009, 01:26 AM
The other obvious reason to use polygons is that sprites do not scale so well. I don't want to be locked at the equivalent of 640x480 when I play the game again in a couple of years.