#exult@irc.freenode.net logs for 6 Oct 2003 (GMT)

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[01:21:00] <SB-X> hi
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[01:51:17] <Coren_> How goes Exult??
[01:55:35] <SB-X> it looks like they will be having another release soon
[01:55:44] <Coren_> Coolness.
[01:55:48] <SB-X> whenever someone decides too
[01:55:50] <SB-X> to*
[01:59:04] <Coren_> They should do like I do and loose their jobs. Helps for development. :-/
[02:00:05] <Coren_> I *finally* have time to work on LoW. Let's just hope I have enough food to last until a release. Heh.
[02:08:48] <SB-X> I think DrCode did take that advice up at one point, but he has a new job now. :)
[02:09:24] <Coren_> Mind you, that's advice that's rarely taken willingly. :)
[02:09:38] <SB-X> What is LoW?
[02:10:10] <Coren_> Err, an UW2 remake. Sorry- I presumed you knew since most people here do.
[02:10:16] <Coren_> http://low.sf.net/
[02:11:13] <SB-X> I don't follow most of the remakes news... surprisingly... or visit the various Ultima sites.
[02:11:40] <SB-X> I havn't played UW or UW2 either... but I did play System Shock.
[02:12:30] <SB-X> Hey those are great screenshots :)
[02:12:39] <Coren_> Meh. I won't blame you for that-- the vast majority of the "remakes" out there are overambitious, vaguely inspired rehashes that will never end up to anything. Most of the news about them is so much hype and vapor. :-)
[02:12:40] <SB-X> have you done the entire 3D engine from scratch?
[02:13:35] <Coren_> Yes, the 3d engine is from scratch, but that's the part I'm currently redoing. The first draft sucked-- it worked, but was a monster of inneficiency. I was just doing a naive 3d rendering of the tile map. I'm doing a portal engine right now.
[02:14:17] <SB-X> Do you think 3D engine (including movement physics) or getting NPC conversations was more difficult?
[02:14:19] <Coren_> Actually, the engine works in my tree. Even does true shadows.
[02:14:38] <SB-X> i still have to start on my own 3d game engine
[02:15:16] <Coren_> conversations were more difficult (more unknowns to figure out) but the 3d is more brittle and error-prone. No hard math in conversations. :-)
[02:16:28] <Coren_> Indeed, that's part of the reason why I'm rewriting it. The first version was a quick hack to get me far enough to get at the 'fun' stuff.
[02:18:19] <SB-X> UW2 only has 10 npcs?
[02:18:49] <Coren_> No, those NPCs are the 'castle' NPCs; those that hang about your home base.
[02:19:04] <Coren_> (I'm presuming you are refering to the screenshot)
[02:19:32] <SB-X> yeah
[02:19:50] <SB-X> you read the font for the fps display from the game data?
[02:20:24] <Coren_> No, I designed my own font. Look at the conversation screenshot for a better look.
[02:20:31] <SB-X> and the conversations
[02:21:09] <Coren_> There are still a few kerning pairs a bit off, but I think it looks pretty good.
[02:21:49] <SB-X> Yes I see that, it's a nice font :)
[02:21:54] <Coren_> The font used in the original game was designed for a 320x200 screen. 4x7 pixels IIRC. :-)
[02:22:10] <SB-X> What did the original text look like?
[02:22:31] <SB-X> oh
[02:22:31] <SB-X> hehe
[02:22:48] <SB-X> is kerning where the letters raise above or drop below the base line?
[02:23:53] <SB-X> Oh and do you load models from the original or create your own?
[02:23:55] <Coren_> No, kerning is variation in spacing between specific pairs of letters. Proportional fonts look ugly without that. For instance 'A' and 'V' are nudged together.
[02:24:16] <SB-X> ah I see
[02:24:36] <Coren_> LOL. The originals had no models. It had zoomed billboard sprites.
[02:25:02] <SB-X> lol
[02:25:21] <SB-X> well now I want to play UW2, but I might wait and play it with your version
[02:25:48] <SB-X> I only played SystemShock for the first time recently, and it uses the 8 sprites instead of 3d models too.
[02:25:54] <Coren_> By today's standard the underworlds look like shit. :-) They were cutting edge, 12 or so years ago. :-)
[02:26:23] <SB-X> Yeah I remember many games much more recent than that that continued to use that style of graphics.
[02:27:48] <Coren_> The storyline of UW2, however, remains one of my all-time favorites. Thus the remake.
[02:28:38] <Coren_> UW1 was kinda odd. A side story outside canon, but that's because TTLG didn't even know *if* they'd be using the Ultima name, so everything is oddly generic.
[02:29:01] <SB-X> hehe
[02:29:04] <SB-X> TTLG made Thief right?
[02:29:08] <SB-X> thats one of my favorites
[02:29:30] <SB-X> but my favorite Ultima is probably U6
[02:29:42] <Coren_> UW2, OTOH, fits perfectly between U7 and U7B, explains many things otherwise unexplained, is canon, and completely contradicts U9. All Good Things. :-)
[02:30:09] <Coren_> Yes, U6 was very nice indeed. I liked the not-so-black-and-white nature of its story.
[02:30:37] <SB-X> Well, it did have some plot holes, if you look at Hacki's page.
[02:30:53] <SB-X> His page is my only knowledge of U9 too, because I've never played it except for the demo.
[02:31:22] <Coren_> Well, with *today's* hardware, it looks good and has nice performance.
[02:32:13] <Coren_> But it's otherwise an uncompromising piece of garbage. The people who hacked that storyline VERY obviously had never read anything on Britannia, and certainly never played any other Ultima.
[02:32:49] <Coren_> And calling U9's failings plot holes is kinda like calling the Pacific 'slightly humid'.
[02:33:25] <SB-X> lol
[02:33:45] <SB-X> does it look like they started on one thing, and suddenly went with a new story when they were short on time?
[02:34:02] <SB-X> I remember they originally thought of doing U9 with an engine like U8
[02:34:14] <Coren_> And besides, the entire premisce of U9 is that the Guardian is the Avatar's "evil twin", created when he reached Avatarhood. That doesn't fly.
[02:35:04] <SB-X> i have a png explaining the real motives behind the guardian
[02:35:17] <Coren_> Oh? :-)
[02:37:07] <Coren_> UW2's storyline (which I won't go into given you didn't play it yet) actually contains the most guardian background of any Ultima, and completely invalidates the evil twin hack of U9
[02:38:02] <SB-X> there sent
[02:38:09] <SB-X> forgive the stupidity in that pls ;)
[02:38:22] <Coren_> AAUGH! YAAYBABTU!!!!
[02:38:46] * Coren_ thwaps SB-X with a trout!
[02:38:56] * SB-X gives the trout to Jammet.
[02:39:19] <SB-X> probably deserve that
[02:39:20] <SB-X> lol
[02:39:37] <Coren_> I should have guessed from the filename!
[02:39:46] <SB-X> yes
[02:39:48] * Coren_ smirks.
[02:39:54] <SB-X> in uw2 is the guardian one of the pagan gods?
[02:40:10] <SB-X> i mean, the ones from u8
[02:40:18] <SB-X> i forgot what they are called
[02:40:30] <Coren_> Not in so many words; but you can infer that from what they say in U8 and what you have learned in UW2.
[02:40:40] <Coren_> Titan
[02:41:01] <SB-X> yeah thats it
[02:41:09] <SB-X> there was a topic on the exult forum about it recently
[02:41:17] <SB-X> different theories on the guardian's history
[02:41:54] <Coren_> Well, UW2 does fill a number of holes. For one, we know he's been working hard at conquering worlds in several dimensions for millenia.
[02:43:23] <Coren_> One of the NPCs in UW2 refers to him as the 'Red Titan', though that might be a coincidence (generic meaning of titan)
[02:44:09] <SB-X> they capitalize it?
[02:44:52] <Coren_> I'm not sure. I wish I could remember which NPC calls him that since I could then go in my game and look it up.
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[09:38:46] --- Topic for #exult is: http://exult.sf.net/
[09:38:46] --- Topic for #exult set by wjp at Thu Sep 4 15:48:16 2003
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[11:24:45] <wjp> hi
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[12:49:20] <wjp> hi Fingolfin
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[13:08:42] <wjp> hi
[13:08:45] <Dominus> hi all
[13:28:30] <Dominus> hm, regarding my installation of Windows ME: it was a total disaster. ME crashed more often than "usual" with some strange vxd blue screen (never telling which vxd actually misbehaved...)
[13:28:47] <Dominus> after struggling a bit I wiped it off the hd again...
[13:29:46] <DarkeZzz> That sounds like a standard WinME installation to me. *grin*
[13:29:58] <Dominus> he he
[13:30:36] <Dominus> I had it running ok before but when I switched to my new system it started to misbehave and that is when I decided to make a new install
[13:31:43] <DarkeZzz> Ahh. Sounds like you really lucked out with that old system configuration then. Apparently every now and again there's a system ME works stabily on.
[13:31:55] <Dominus> I thought when using the correct chipset drivers from the start I would be spared this horror
[13:32:15] <Dominus> yes, my old one did very well
[13:32:52] <Dominus> I'm gonna try win98 next but I fear it won'T be any better
[13:33:37] <DarkeZzz> 98se is *much* more stable in default config then ME. You might get away with it.
[13:35:05] <Dominus> hmm, there is something wrong again with the forum for me...
[13:35:39] <Dominus> I see 9 replies to the mint thread and 11 to the ... other thread though it should be the other way round...
[13:37:58] <Dominus> I even have a screenshot of that
[13:38:31] <wjp> replies to wrong threads? hm, did you delete a post somewhere?
[13:38:40] <Dominus> nope
[13:38:56] <Dominus> going into the post the file count was correct
[13:39:08] <Dominus> the reply count
[13:39:25] <Dominus> meaning correct amount of replies...
[13:39:52] <Dominus> I think others reported something like this happening before
[13:41:04] <Fingolfin> hi wjp, Dominus, DarkeZzz :-)
[13:41:11] <Dominus> hi Fingolfin
[13:41:40] * Fingolfin only was using XP recently (not that I have to do much with Win machines at all). at least that was rather stable in the cases I tried
[13:42:29] <Dominus> it is rather stable when you have supported hardware (meaning actual xp drivers and not only windows2000 drivers)
[13:43:51] <Dominus> though I have this tiny little program (by Symantec even) that was for Windows 95 and worked fine up to Windows ME but crashes all NT based Windows OS'
[13:45:17] <Dominus> Fingolfin: can you look at this older thread in the forum and tell me if I can use those steps in readme.osx for compile instructions?
[13:45:20] <Dominus> http://exult.sourceforge.net/forum/read.php?f=1&i=16037&t=15940
[13:45:35] <Dominus> I was meaning to ask you ages ago but forgot...
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[13:47:41] <Dominus> hi Nadir
[13:47:44] <Nadir> hi
[13:47:57] <Nadir> Who is this ultima7-team guy ?
[13:48:18] <Nadir> and why do I suddenly find him annoying ? :)
[13:48:39] <Dominus> hmm, let me think really hard on those questions...
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[15:13:38] <Fingolfin> in case Dominus reads the logs: yes what is described in that forum entry sounds correct
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[15:23:51] <Coren_> Willem!
[15:24:15] <wjp> hi
[15:25:34] <Coren_> How oges?
[15:25:46] <wjp> kind of busy with studying :/
[15:25:49] <Coren_> Goes, even.
[15:26:06] <Coren_> I know the feeling.
[15:26:19] <wjp> planning to finish my master's thesis (or the dutch equivalent, rather) within a few months
[15:29:32] <Coren_> Neat! My Doctorate thesis is finished, I'm waiting for the board to review and schedule my defense.
[15:30:03] <wjp> congrats :-)
[15:30:30] <Coren_> Don't congrat too quickly. It might come back yet for /another/ roud of revisions. :-/
[15:35:52] <Coren_> My new 3d engine kicks ass. :-)
[15:36:44] <Cahaan> it looks like HL2 3D engine
[15:36:51] <Cahaan> :)
[15:36:53] <Cahaan> jk
[15:37:28] <Coren_> Heh.
[15:37:42] <wjp> I have no idea if that's impressive or not :-)
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[16:08:44] <Fingolfin> heh
[16:14:13] <Coren_> DUnno about HL2, but I'm particularly proud of my shadow code. It's fast enough to not need any preprocessing.
[16:15:52] <armav> can you tell us more about your shadow code?
[16:16:26] <armav> does it create true shadows?
[16:17:44] <Coren_> Hm? Well, it's not too complicated really, once I figured out the 'right' way of doing line-of0sight. I project the surface and the current visibility volume on the plane where the surface lie, intersect the pwo polygons (simple and fast), render the polygon in the lightmap then. If the surface was a portal, I unproject it back into a set of culling planes from the light/view point and cross the portal.
[16:18:36] <Coren_> Turns out this way is fast enough to light thousands of surfaces per second; and if you update the lightmaps only when the light source moves around, then it's fast enough for real time.
[16:19:04] <armav> but what about object that block the light source?
[16:19:07] <armav> *objects
[16:19:25] <Fingolfin> and multiple light sources; and ambient light (fuzzy shadow borders), and... :-)
[16:19:44] <Coren_> Works fine with multiple lightsources.
[16:19:49] <armav> cool
[16:20:03] <Coren_> Only the architecture casts shadows right now; easy since it's a protal engine
[16:20:13] <Coren_> portal even.
[16:20:32] <Coren_> I can do soft shadows with multiple passes. Only do that for static lights, though.
[16:20:36] <armav> is the new code in cvs?
[16:21:06] <Coren_> armav: Yes, in the new_engine repository-- but the public cvs lags a day or so behind my working copy.
[16:21:26] <armav> i'll try it once i have a legal copy of uw2
[16:21:28] <armav> :)
[16:21:51] <Coren_> Heh; the new engine isn't integrated with the game yet.
[16:28:02] <Fingolfin> "public cvs lags a day" -> if you are using SF.net CVS, this is not true anymore. If you aren't, just ignore me :-)
[16:29:03] <Coren_> I was. Didn't know it wasn't true anymore. There are still warnings of lag plastered all over the relevant pages as of two days ago.
[16:29:29] <Fingolfin> 24 hour warnings, yes
[16:29:34] <Fingolfin> but it's really updated more often than that
[16:30:14] <Fingolfin> e.g. this has changes from 10 hours ago: http://cvs.sourceforge.net/viewcvs.py/scummvm/scummvm/backends/midi/
[16:31:23] <armav> i don't know about viewcvs, but public cvs still lags (maybe that's just a temporary issue though, because it's not supposed to happen anymore)
[16:33:51] <Fingolfin> yeah it does lag
[16:34:01] <Fingolfin> but it used to be 6-7 days. now it's 4-24 hours
[16:42:43] * Coren_ makes a not to not make note of current bugs in commit messages. Looks silly when you refer to a bug that has been fixed, in another file, and didn't need any changes to the file holding the message. :-)
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[17:06:24] <Coren_> Pop quiz: find the bug... for(int i=0; i<num(); --i) { ... }
[17:07:03] * Coren_ kicks himself.
[17:15:54] <wjp> well, that should loop for quite some time :-)
[17:17:55] <Coren_> Better yet, the actual loop body recurses to the function containing that snippet. :-)
[17:19:10] <Coren_> I'm not as stupid as I look, mind you, this used to read 'for(int i=num()-1; i>=0; --i)' before I changed the direction of the loop and forgot to also change the -- into a ++.
[17:27:49] <Coren_> You know the sick thing? It still /worked/! I was wondering why it took *too* long. God, you can loop on a 32 bit counter and it still takes sub-second.
[17:28:31] <Coren_> I think cpus are gotten too powerful for our own good. No wonder most the the new programmers out there are wasteful and sloppy.
[17:30:29] <Coren_> A mchine cycle used to be a precious thing.
[17:35:40] <wjp> hehe :-)
[17:35:52] <wjp> sure, it only takes 2 billion iterations :-)
[17:36:02] <wjp> "only" ;-)
[18:21:02] <wjp> ack! gentoo marked gnome 2.4 as stable... *watches dozens and dozens of package waiting to be updated*
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[19:40:41] <wjp> hi
[19:42:55] <Dominus> hi
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[23:03:38] <Coren_> Hrm. Perhaps inlinling those four small functions that get called almost 2millon times per second might be worthwile.
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