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2S3TC||!2S3TC
August 17th 2000, 14:56 CEST by andy

S3TC for the Direct3D API for Unreal Tournament is a petition asking Epic to incorporate hi-res texture support into UT's Direct3D rendering. The petition currently boasts around 400 signatures, although some of them are clearly fake.



"The D3D users of Unreal Tournament have seen the light," explains Michael Fouquet, who created the petition. "For too long have we had to suffer with slow frame rates and poor image quality. This petition is here to stop it." He concludes: "Nvidia has even offered to help with this issue. Therefore, we would like to see the benefits of having S3TC (improved visual quality, higher frame rates) implemented into Direct3D."

The issue has been discussed on a few Unreal web sites, such as PlanetUnreal and Savage Daily News. As well as people requesting the S3TC support, one complaint being made against Epic is that there has been no response to people's requests. Indeed, this is part of the reason why Michael Fouquet created the petition.

However, when I asked Tim Sweeney why Epic had been staying silent, he said: "If by 'staying silent' you mean we haven't answered every question on every message board on the Internet, guilty as charged! Though, I've answered about 20 'why don't you support DXT1 under Direct3D in Unreal Tournament' queries in email."

When I asked Michael to explain more about why he feels the petition is necessary, he explained: "Performance for Direct3D users is not always that great. S3TC increases the frame rate by a great number. Also it makes textures go from 256x256 in resolution to 2048x2048 in resolution. I feel it's necessary because the Direct3D users deserve the same frame rates and image quality that S3 and Glide users enjoy (even though Glide has no S3TC support on older cards it still looks better than Direct3D). About time to make sure Epic hears us out."

Well, Epic has heard them out, but not in a way that will make everyone happy. Here's the rest of what Tim had to say on the subject:

Supporting DXT1 in Direct3D would very significantly slow down our texture management code, which isn't overly fast as it is. Though the DXT1 format is only 4 bits per pixel compared to 16-32 bits per pixel for our other textures on Direct3D, the DXT1 textures we shipped with are really high-res (many 1024x1024) so they consume a lot more video memory and texture bandwidth, as well as causing contention issues with other texture sizes and formats.

Some people then ask, "so why don't you support it as an option, and let us decide whether we want the really high res textures but a significant performance drain?" My view here has been closely influenced by the experience we had with Unreal1's "Curved Surfaces" feature, an optional feature users could turn on which caused creature and player meshes (not world geometry) to be dynamically tesselated to up to 9X higher polygon counts, making them look more smooth and curvy -- also at a slowdown. Well, tons of users turned that option on thinking it would be cool, then later experienced the slowdowns and didn't realize the slowdown was caused by that one little "curved surfaces" menu option they had selected hours or days earlier. Moral of the story: don't add optional little features that cause major slowdowns.

So, we are definitely NOT going to add DXT1 support to the Direct3D code. We are influenced a lot by users' opinions; remember the recent Unreal1 petition which shamed us into releasing the final Unreal1 patch?:) But that was something that made Unreal1 better; adding DXT1 to UT would make the game worse and we're not going to do it no matter how many people sign the petition.

C O M M E N T S
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#1 by "godZero"
2000-08-17 15:00:35
godzero@gmx.de
First or not first <b>AGAIN!</b>?
#2 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 15:05:23
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
Before anyone starts giving me a hard time about this, no, I don't really understand the issue and I haven't had time to learn about it. That's why it isn't explained very well in the topic. The people who this affects will already understand, so really this topic is just about passing on the info from Tim.
#3 by "godZero"
2000-08-17 15:07:06
godzero@gmx.de
<b>#Main Post</b> "andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>Unreal 1's "Curved Surfaces" feature, an optional feature users could turn
on which caused creature and player meshes (not world geometry) to be
dynamically tesselated to up to 9X higher polygon counts, making them look more
smooth and curvy -- also at a slowdown. Well, tons of users turned that option
on thinking it would be cool, then later experienced the slowdowns and didn't
realize the slowdown was caused by that one little "curved surfaces" menu option
they had selected hours or days earlier</QUOTE>

Strange, I never experienced any slowdowns when I turned curved surfaces on/off.

S3TC is not "perfectly" supported by current hardware. It would probably choke almost every system, not to speak about the way it would look (see sky in Q3 with a GeForce? Terrible). UT D3D doesn't run that fast any way.

Though I qwould really appreciate to have it as an option, it would be nice to play tweaking again (haven't done any serious, in-depth tweaking since when Unreal came out and I had a Riva 128...)
#4 by "godZero"
2000-08-17 15:09:09
godzero@gmx.de
<b>#Main Post</b> "andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>We are influenced a lot by users' opinions; remember the recent Unreal 1
petition which shamed us into releasing the final Unreal 1 patch? :) </QUOTE>

ROTFL!!! How pathetic...I'd be ashamed
#5 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 15:15:17
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
<b>#4</b>, godZero:
<QUOTE>
<B>#Main Post</B> "andy" wrote...
</QUOTE>
Nope. :-)
<QUOTE>
ROTFL!!! How pathetic...I'd be ashamed
</QUOTE>
Ah, but remember: Epic wasn't obliged to patch Unreal at all -- they did it out of the goodness of their hearts! (Bonus points to anyone who can remember who said that.)
#6 by "godZero"
2000-08-17 15:18:00
godzero@gmx.de
<b>#5</b> "Andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>Nope. :-)

<quote>
</quote></QUOTE>

I know, I'm just too lazy...using standard quote :-)
#7 by "Erik"
2000-08-17 15:55:59
erik@s3planet.force9.co.uk http://www.s3p.co.uk/
<i>Thinking...</i>
#8 by "Anon"
2000-08-17 15:58:24
Okay, so lemme get this straight:

Is S3TC those large textures on the second disc make the make game look godly-beautiful on cards such as the probably-not-worth-buying Diamond Viper II?

I've been wishing and wishing to see those for a long, long time. And I find it stupid that some crappy  Diamond card (and I can say they're crappy, as my past two 3D cards were Diamonds) is doing something my GeForce DDR supposedly can't.

Of course, Diamond's always been addicted to segregation. Look what they did with some Quake3 levels earlier this year. Only works with their video cards, although as far as the screenshots of them go, I haven't seen anything that I don't think my system already couldn't handle.

S3TC may very well be some other technology and I'm just rambling here, but I feel a lot better after this fume. :D
#9 by "Erik"
2000-08-17 15:59:09
erik@s3planet.force9.co.uk http://www.s3p.co.uk/
godZero: the reason the sky looks so crappy on a GeForce is because in Q3, the textures are stores uncompressed. When loaded, and s3tc is turned on in Q3, they're compressed dynamically. The sky texture isn't really suited to be compressed, hence the crappy sky.

It's much better to use precompressed textures, because the developers then know what it will look like. That's why those high res UT textures on the 2nd CD look so good!
#10 by "Gestalt"
2000-08-17 16:13:24
john@eurogamer.net http://www.eurogamer.net
"Though the DXT1 format is only 4 bits per pixel compared to 16-32 bits per pixel for our other textures on Direct3D, the DXT1 textures we shipped with are really high-res (many 1024x1024) so they consume a lot more video memory and texture bandwidth, as well as causing contention issues with other texture sizes and formats."

Um .. is he just talking about letting people with crap / old video cards (Voodoo 3, TNT, RageWhatever etc) use the hi-res textures? I can see why that would be a bad idea... /me shudders. Otherwise that really doesn't make any sense - DXTC should work just fine on GeForce and Voodoo 5 cards.

I'm confused. :)
#11 by "PsychoMoggieBagpuss|PuF"
2000-08-17 16:25:07
psychomoggiebagpuss@hotmail.com
[rant]It would probably help if Epic released a readme file containing notes explaining what all the different switches accessible from advanced preferences did each time they release a patch, instead of just letting everyone work it out (usually very painfully) for themselves.[/rant]

And yep, the compressed textures look absoloutly bloody amazing (not sure about the fps increase, not that I need it :D), 1024x768@32bit max everything and 70fps is great, though I'd rather have 1024x768@32bit max everything PLUS compressed textures at 60fps :(.
Unfortunatly the only way to see them is to have a crappy S3 card.

That sucks major arse
#12 by "PsychoMoggieBagpuss|PuF"
2000-08-17 16:29:02
psychomoggiebagpuss@hotmail.com
Well, tons of users turned that option on thinking it would be cool, then later experienced the slowdowns and didn't realize the slowdown was caused by that one little "curved surfaces" menu option they had selected hours or days earlier


So use a goddamn readme file already.
#13 by "PsychoMoggieBagpuss|PuF"
2000-08-17 16:29:50
psychomoggiebagpuss@hotmail.com
whoops, should have used  instead of [] :)

/me slaps forehead
#14 by "Terry Claydon"
2000-08-17 16:31:02
danrik@hotmail.com
Fix the D3D Epic you lazy B!t@hes and give us DXTC NOW!!!
#15 by "Ilys"
2000-08-17 16:36:12
S3TC on Q3 makes it possible for me to use high screen resolutions with the best possible texture quality with no slowdown. I for one would like to just have an option for S3TC, it doesn't need to be turned on as with the 'Curved Surfaces' option for Unreal1 and UT. If i remeber rightly, that option was in the 'Options, Advanced Options' menu, while for UT you have to type 'preferences' in the console. How many users of UT know what they are doing in the console? well, me for one...
As for this 'Curved Surfaces' option, i have only just figured how to turn it on, and there is no slowdown on my Geforce2. So why does S3TC have to slowdown the performance of UT on the DirectX API when it is supported on the S3Metal API, which i have to say the cards are rubbish, but S3TC makes up for the poor frame rate on S3 cards.
So come on, give us the option or we will keep complaining :)
#16 by "DevPac2"
2000-08-17 17:09:04
devpac2@hotmail.com
OT, this story has been linked by both Blues and VE, so battern (sp ?) down the hatches :), Oh and i think ppl should have a look at Blues story of the day :)

Dev
#17 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 17:13:00
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
<b>#16</b>, DevPac2:
<QUOTE>
OT, this story has been linked by both Blues and VE
</QUOTE>
I accept no responsibility for the VE link. ;-)
<QUOTE>
Oh and i think ppl should have a look at Blues story of the day :)
</QUOTE>
Heh, does he mean what I think he means? Hmm...
#18 by "Diseased"
2000-08-17 17:13:00
diseasedanimal@yahoo.com
I'm retarded on this stuff, but bear with me.  Doesn't Q3's S3 texture thingy work with Nvidia cards?  Why then wouldn't the S3 textures work in UT for Nvidia cards?  I know I must really be missing something fundamental here.  Someone help out the village idiot please.
#19 by "Me"
2000-08-17 17:14:18
Sweeney is trying to confuse the point.

If S3TC support was added UT would be faster. Who the hell said anything about having to turn on high res textures... Texture management would obviously be faster if all the  textures were 1/6 the size.

Since a few of you don't seem to be aware of this - Geforce has supported S3TC since their 5.x drivers

Of course none of this really matters since UT sucks and everyone should play Quake 3.
#20 by "Someone"
2000-08-17 17:28:09
Loki is making S3TC available for the Geforce cards in their next Linux UT patch. Maybe Epic can just port Loki's code once it's done?
#21 by "Colourless"
2000-08-17 17:31:25
Assuming that Linux UT uses OpenGL then the textures will be compressed by the GeForce driver, and wont use the second CD. So Loki's code will be of no use.
#22 by "Tim Sweeney"
2000-08-17 17:47:10
tim@epicgames.com http://unreal.epicgames.com/
Well, tons of users turned that option on thinking it would be cool, then later experienced the slowdowns and didn't realize the slowdown was caused by that one little "curved surfaces" menu option they had selected hours or days earlier


So use a goddamn readme file already.


This isn't a solution.  The vast majority of users don't read the readme file.  The majority of users don't realize the correlation between one little menu item they selected a while ago, and their current game performance or lack thereof.

If S3TC support was added UT would be faster. Who the hell said anything about having to turn on high res textures.


The good-intentioned dude who started the petition said: "S3TC increases the frame rate by a great number. Also it makes textures go from 256x256 in resolution to 2048x2048 in resolution."  But that's not realistic, because a 2048x2048x4-bit texture consumes 2 megs, while a 256x256 16-bit texture consumes about one-tenth of a meg.

Of course none of this really matters since UT sucks and everyone should play Quake 3.


I had a feeling that topic would come up in this thread. :)

-Tim
#23 by "Peter Bridger"
2000-08-17 17:48:19
peter.bridger@tpg.co.uk http://www.inetcentral.co.uk/
I wonder why they don't want to add this feature..

* It's already in the game, but only through the MeTaL API
* Quake 3 uses it, making it a more attractive engine for developers
* Texture compress is better than no texture compression


I can't see a downside to implementing support. I believe Tim Sweeney's main argument was that it would slow the game down too much. However S3TC is already in the game, but you need an S3 card to make use of it. I don't see it slowing down the game for this card.

I think they are just making the Q3 engine look more attractive by refusing to add this feature.



...but then, what do I know ;)
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#24 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-08-17 17:51:27
darkseid-d@planetcrap.com http://www.captured.com/boomstick
a name like Fouquet ... and alarm bells arent going off

say it Foo quit .... Phuket ......


follow the phenomes ;)

someone just got Pranked.




Ds

'To the GSI peeps, ROLLING ROCK!'<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#25 by "DevPac2"
2000-08-17 17:57:01
devpac2@hotmail.com
OT (again) And its been linked by the Shack aswell, if that wasn't obvious by some of the previous comments :)

Was the link put up by VE on the D2 story the cause of the outage earlier on b.t.w. ?

Dev
#26 by "EPIC SUX ASS"
2000-08-17 18:01:34
Uhhh..EPIC SUX ASS
#27 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 18:04:42
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
<b>#24</b>, Darkseid-[D!]:
<QUOTE>
a name like Fouquet ... and alarm bells arent going off
</QUOTE>
Tell me about it. I was more than a little suspicious. :-)
<QUOTE>
someone just got Pranked.
</QUOTE>
No, I don't think so.

And even if the petition is a prank, or just the name is false for some reason, the issue itself is genuine and of interest to quite a few people.
#28 by "Skot"
2000-08-17 18:13:20
sld5@ra.msstate.edu
Why not at least support FXT1 with the Voodoo5 then?  Glide natively supports it.

With the Voodoo5 in Q3, the textures are compressed in FXT1 format at map load time (when legacy texture compression is enabled). Why can't something like that be done with UT?

Or better yet, why can't you make a utility available to compress the high res textures in FXT1 format?
#29 by "err head"
2000-08-17 18:20:05
err_head@yahoo.com
<b>#5</b> "Andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>

Ah, but remember: Epic wasn't obliged to patch Unreal at all -- they did it out of the goodness of their hearts! (Bonus points to anyone who can remember who said that.)

</QUOTE>

greenmarine of course

Screw UT and all it's myriad licensee's when it comes to non-(s3/3dfx) looks and performance, fine. I wonder if the 3DRealms crew will be able to get texture compression working in DN4?

The 64k question is, will epic's next engine have all the same limitations, or will it be a decent directx performer? is texture management still "broken" in dx8, or will they be able to use DXTC?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#30 by "Skot"
2000-08-17 18:23:15
sld5@ra.msstate.edu
err head

From what I've heard, Epic's next generation renderer will be written from the ground up with DX8 in mind.
#31 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-08-17 18:31:31
http://www.3drealms.com
You could only wish.
#32 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-08-17 18:39:28
sbauman@cdmag.com http://www.cdmag.com
I find it interesting the way the people with the new hardware want to justify their purchases by pressuring developers to implement features in "old" games. Guess what? The majority of people playing games don't have cards that support S3TC, or hardware T&L, or the various other doo-dads people want/expect.

In this case, does the game really have problems that need to be addressed, or is this a "wouldn't it be nice" feature? If there are legitimate problems with the game, wouldn't people prefer they address those issues than add new features?

Perhaps more importantly, do you want Epic to work on tech updates to Unreal Tournament for the next two years, or would you prefer they create all-new products (and engines) that, perhaps, will add these features as part of their design (and may actually work better with all 3D cards, not just those from 3Dfx)?

These kinds of requests just further my suspicion that people really care most about graphics and "cool stuff" in games; do any of these things improve gameplay, or do they improve people's ability to play the game in gee-whiz resolutions with high-rez textures...
#33 by "Jeremy"
2000-08-17 18:42:19
jnthornh@eos.ncsu.edu
<b>#22</b> "Tim Sweeney" wrote...
<QUOTE>This isn't a solution. The vast majority of users don't read the readme file. The majority of users don't realize the correlation between one little menu item they selected a while ago, and their current game performance or lack thereof. </QUOTE>
Oh please.  Couldn't you put it in as a non-menu option which defaulted to off, which only people who read the readme file would know even existed?  Or couldn't you put some sort of warning in the menu itself?  I'm sure you could find <i>some</i> way to convey that it was an option which might hurt performance.

<b>#29</b> "err head" wrote...
<QUOTE>The 64k question is, will epic's next engine have all the same limitations, or will it be a decent directx performer? is texture management still "broken" in dx8, or will they be able to use DXTC?</QUOTE>
BINGO!

That's why I haven't, to this day, bought UT.  I was terribly disappoined in Unreal, so I didn't buy UT when it came out.  I waited... and heard some good things about the game, but overriding it all was the general consensus that:

<quote>D3D performance STILL sucks.</quote>

I bought, and like, Deus Ex because it is such an outstanding game; but I really hate that less-than-stellar performance.  My question is:  even if you have to do a bit more work, isn't it just flat out <i>worth</i> it for you people to do D3D correctly?  UT seems decent for what it is, but the poor D3D performance was just enough to tip my scales away.

I'm not going to buy a sluggish game if it's only decent.  The next Epic title either needs to either have much improved D3D, or have superb gameplay value which compensates (like Deus Ex).  If you can't pull either of those off, then I'm going to keep avoiding you.

Jeremy
--
Despite your efforts to be a romantic hero, you will gradually evolve into a postmodern plot device. <I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#34 by "Gzon"
2000-08-17 19:03:07
gzon@hotmail.com
Well, you can query the card for DXTC (or s3tc) support, right? The solution to the problem of how to prevent users with crappy video cards, that don't support tc, to turn tc on is then left to the clever reader...



Furthermore, exposing my ignorance here, I tend to believe that TC would reduce the memory bottleneck associated with texture management. Texture management is also known to be one of the major bottlenecks in the Unreal engine. This is at least what Tim Sweeney claimed in numerous 'Unreal Tech' updates last spring/summer when he wrote the OpenGL and D3D code for the Unreal Engine. Methinks then that a card that has hardware support for texture compression would perform *better* with this feature, this is certainly the case with Q3 and bandwithdth limited cards. A good example of such a card is the GeForce SDR which shows a 10-15% performance improvement with s3tc on.



/Gzon
#35 by "Conor "DirtyPunk" Stokes"
2000-08-17 19:07:01
cstokes@tpgi.com.au http://www.flipcode.com/dp
I don't think it would be as much of a problem for nvidia users if:

1) Texture upload rates on the cards were as high as those of other cards (nvidia is very strong on most things, but I've never been able to get the texture upload rate as quick).

2) Certain Cards had the good support for paletted textures that most other companies had (This was only added with the GeForce when it comes to nvidia cards, and is still lacking). If my memory serves me correctly (which it is prone not to do), Unreal/UT was built for 8bit textures.

In my experience, it is really only nvidia cards that have a performance problem with UT, relating to these reasons.

The final statement is a simple one, UT/Unreal upload a lot of textures on the fly. These textures are not likely to be compressed with out large run time cost/image quality degradation etc. So compressing the standard textures is not likely to come to much benefit in terms of frame rate. Your only boon is going to be high res textures. And, that I know of, the proprietry APIs (eg Metal and Glide) are always going to be better at these sort of things, while Dx is not really up to the task of handling lots of high res textures.
#36 by "PainKilleR-[CE]"
2000-08-17 19:07:27
painkiller@planetfortress.com http://www.planetfortress.com/tftech/
#32:<quote>Perhaps more importantly, do you want Epic to work on tech updates to Unreal Tournament for the next two years, or would you prefer they create all-new products (and engines) that, perhaps, will add these features as part of their design (and may actually work better with all 3D cards, not just those from 3Dfx)? </quote>

I'd rather see them improve the D3D performance on their current engine, which would prove to me that they are even capable of making a new engine that works well on cards other than 3dfx. Then again, I have always gotten decent D3D performance due to having a lot of RAM and a decently above-average CPU speed, but it's still giving me the lowest framerates of any current engine.

What would be even nicer would be good OpenGL support, but again those are all personal preferences. The real question is, why would anyone want them to make a new game if the old game doesn't perform well?

-PainKilleR-[CE]
#37 by "Terata"
2000-08-17 19:12:35
I believe we discussed defaulting ST:EF's texture compression to off because it looked noticably uglier when turned on (On a Geforce, at least, which was the main supporter of it yet needed it the least).  Don't recall what the final verdict was offhand though.
#38 by "PK"
2000-08-17 19:16:18
p3@ngi.it
well . i think that this discussion doesn't touch me , since i use software rendering .......
#39 by "Jeremy"
2000-08-17 19:18:35
jnthornh@eos.ncsu.edu
<b>#33</b> "Jeremy" wrote...
<QUOTE>#22 "Tim Sweeney" wrote...

This isn't a solution. The vast majority of users don't read the readme file. The majority of users don't realize the correlation between one little menu item they selected a while ago, and their current game performance or lack thereof.

Oh please. Couldn't you put it in as a non-menu option which defaulted to off, which only people who read the readme file would know even existed? Or couldn't you put some sort of warning in the menu itself? I'm sure you could find some way to convey that it was an option which might hurt performance. </QUOTE>
I should mention that I'm not trying to criticize the decision to exclude this feature; just the reason given <i>behind</i> that decision.

It's their game, and obviously they aren't under a mandate to add new features; but it would make more sense for them to simply say (honestly) "we don't want to do it" or "it would take too much time and effort to justify the benefit," as opposed to claiming that it is impossible to implement without confusing a majority of users.

Jeremy
--
Despite your efforts to be a romantic hero, you will gradually evolve into a postmodern plot device. <I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#40 by "ease"
2000-08-17 19:34:17
rhort@uswest.net
this is pathetic, they should support this, just dont put it in the gfx menu, just in the .ini file or something.  give up the S3tc epic, your game runs like shit on my geforce, like 30 fps in 1024 and q3 runs at like 85 fps in 1024.  come on give up the good.  the linux community got to work on opengl and now its a lot better and faster for them, us windows geforce users are stuck with a $300 vid card that plays your game like shit.  make it go faster, i dont care d3d or opengl, i hope opengl but just make ir run faster and s3Tc would be nice and i dont understand why that would slow it down because it *should* make games faster, like in q3 when it supported.
#41 by "PanchoVilla"
2000-08-17 19:35:49
pasquam@ece.orst.edu http://www.paqi.com
Anyone else have this problem with the UT engine.  I play UT in 1024x768 and it runs great.  I get Deus Ex and it runs like ass.  So I hear about this D3D pathc I grab it and now the game runs like 90% of the ass it used to.  It is still horribly unplayable.  I can't figure it out.  Anyone got any more ideas.  I really want to play this game!  I hear it rocks, I just can't get it to be playable on my machine.  Any advice would be much appreciated.

PV

*Logs back into EQ to wait for a solution*

My machines stats
Athlon 600
Asus K7M MB
128 meg RAM
7200 RPM HD
Creative labs TNT2 Ultra based Creative blaster
(Also since I put in the new HD I am running off a nearly new Win 98 install)
#42 by "Dedicated Fan of 3D"
2000-08-17 19:37:21
This is an interesting discussion.

Fact is, only low memory systems are having a problem with UT.  Get more memory its cheap.

I took a P2-300 w/192MB of RAM with a TNT2 Ultra to UT and played very respectably at 1024x768.

I think the continuance of the DXTC debate is that Tim is right...those textures are already compressed, and they are already huge in their compressed form.  It's just not manageable to do so unless they code even more tediously than they have for the PS2 code (which I bet was a nightmare....)

nVidia lied in their interviews too, they did not offer Epic help, they offered technical documentation and feature suggestions but not to do any coding.  Also, consider the video processing overhead for compressing your small textures...I doubt it is an Epic problem but an nVidia problem.  

In my personal experience...detail textures look close to ridiculously high res textures anyway...and only when you bring your eyeball to the computer monitor while the view is right up against a wall the s3tc doesn't make much difference...chill out.
#43 by "avixe"
2000-08-17 19:43:18
jsg@fiam.net
#42,
<QUOTE>Fact is, only low memory systems are having a problem with UT. Ger more memory its cheap.</QUOTE>

Not true. I have 256 mb RAM and it still runs surprisingly poorly on a GeForce2. I won't say anything technical or accuse anyone, as I don't have the facts and I'm not an engine tech. guy. But it's been my observation that more RAM helps, but over 128 mb it makes little difference.
#44 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 19:46:11
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
<b>#42</b>, Dedicated Fan of 3D:
<QUOTE>
Fact is, only low memory systems are having a problem with UT. Get more memory its cheap.
</QUOTE>
The game should work perfectly on the recommended system spec, and it should work adequately on the minimum spec. If there are some configurations that it has problems with, that should be made clear on the box.
<QUOTE>
In my personal experience...detail textures look close to ridiculously high res textures anyway...and only when you bring your eyeball to the computer monitor while the view is right up against a wall the s3tc doesn't make much difference...chill out.
</QUOTE>
I think you're exaggerating. <a href="http://www.geocities.com/spiritofthenight_2000/">Comparison.</a>
#45 by "Creole Ned"
2000-08-17 19:47:03
cned@telus.net http://www.quirkybastards.com
I agree with Steve Bauman 100%. There is absolutely no need for Epic to add this support into UT. This is a definite case of people wanting to eat their cake and have it, too. The game has been out for nine months now, it's been patched, it works. If you want more, there's also the Bonus Pack Epic released, along with the Digital Extremes maps and the Innox Pack, both of which contain maps made by the actual designers of the game. All of these things are free and Epic (and DE and Innox) were under no obligation to release them. Enjoy them and stop these silly petitions to add every bell and whistle *you* think should be in the game.

And if this guy thought the compressed textures were such a great thing, why did he wait so long to start up a petition? The whole thing is ridiculous. Boys with toys, nothing more. But it's a free world and it got a fresh topic started on PC, so who am I to complain? :)
#46 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 19:59:10
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
Brace yourself. Even after admitting my own ignorance on the subject I'm going to have a go at tackling this one...

<b>#45</b>, Creole Ned:
<QUOTE>
I agree with Steve Bauman 100%. There is absolutely no need for Epic to add this support into UT. This is a definite case of people wanting to eat their cake and have it, too. The game has been out for nine months now, it's been patched, it works.
</QUOTE>
No, I think you're wrong. As I understand it, there are ongoing problems with UT's Direct3D rendering. If this additional feature that people are asking for were to be added, it would improve the Direct3D performance for *some* people.

You've read the petition as "<i>we want some extra stuff for free</i>".

I've read it as "<i>we accept that this isn't a perfect solution but at least it will help *some* of us, so please do it</i>".

I'm inclined to agree with the person who said earlier that Tim is trying to confuse the issue. Notice that the guy who started the petition says:
<quote>
Performance for Direct3D users is not always that great. S3TC increases the frame rate by a great number. [...] I feel it's necessary because the Direct3D users deserve the same frame rates and image quality that S3 and Glide users enjoy
</quote>
But Tim says:
<quote>
Supporting DXT1 in Direct3D would very significantly slow down our texture management code, which isn't overly fast as it is.
</quote>
These two views, to me, appear to contradict each other. That may very well be due to my own lack of knowledge, in which case I'd appreciate someone explaining it to me, but if not: Why would people be asking for a feature to increase frame rate, when that feature would in fact "significantly slow down" frame rate? It doesn't make sense.
#47 by "Andy"
2000-08-17 20:02:53
andy@planetcrap.com http://www.meejahor.com/
<b>#46</b>, Andy:
<QUOTE>
But Tim says:
<quote>
Supporting DXT1 in Direct3D would very significantly <b>slow down our texture management code</b>, which isn't overly fast as it is.
</quote>
These two views, to me, appear to contradict each other. That may very well be due to my own lack of knowledge, in which case I'd appreciate someone explaining it to me, but if not: Why would people be asking for a feature to increase frame rate, when that feature would in fact <b>"significantly slow down" frame rate</b>? It doesn't make sense.
</QUOTE>
To clarify, I should have said that I took Tim's comment about slowing down texture management to mean that frame rate would also be slowed down. I should have explained why I made the jump from one thing to the other, and this may be what I don't understand.
#48 by "Konrad"
2000-08-17 20:03:15
So far I've seen the following jargon in this thread:

S3TC, DXT1, FXT1, DXTC, MeTaL API

I have some vague understanding that they're something to do with compression on video cards, and that's it.  Am I alone in not only my ignorance, but in just not caring?  Don't get me wrong, I like UT (especially assault), but either the game's playable or it isn't.  And UT is playable on my mediocre TNT system.

I think what I mean is, why are people so fervent about this feature (which I assume they have only superficial knowledge of) in the first place, and especially after the games programmer has stated it will not be beneficial?

And I used to think I was hardcore.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#49 by "Jafd"
2000-08-17 20:11:40
jafd@zombieworld.com http://jafd.isfuckingbrilliant.com/
Sounds to me as though nothing in this area is going to move forward or even be talked about until DX8 is out.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#50 by "Warren Marshall"
2000-08-17 20:13:11
warren@epicgames.com http://www.epicgames.com
<b>Peter Bridger</b> (#23):
<QUOTE>* Texture compress is better than no texture compression </QUOTE>

Are you sure about that?  If you have a card that supports compression, like  GeForce2, go into Q3DM5 ... find a spot where you can get a good look at the sky ... try toggling the command ...

"r_ext_compress_textures 0/1"

... and restart Quake3.  The sky is a good indicator of what happens, but also the lightmaps ... try ...

"r_lightmap 1/0"

... and note the severe drop in lightmap quality when compression is on.

Not saying it's a useless feature, just saying it comes with a price.  :)

<b>DevPac2</b> (#25):
<QUOTE>OT (again) And its been linked by the Shack aswell, if that wasn't obvious by
some of the previous comments :)
</QUOTE>

<b>EPIC SUX ASS</b> (#26):
<QUOTE>Uhhh..EPIC SUX ASS </QUOTE>

Perfect timing.  :)

<b>Andy</b> (#44):
<QUOTE>The game should work perfectly on the recommended system spec, and it should
work adequately on the minimum spec. If there are some configurations that it
has problems with, that should be made clear on the box. </QUOTE>

Well, this is true of ALL games.  No game in history has ever had accurate system specs on the box.  None that I can remember anyway ...

Not saying it's right -- it's not -- but that's marketing.  I know on Wheel of Time, we had a minimum spec machine in mind that we knew in-house would run the game OK for people.  We conveyed that to GT.  They said they would use it.  What they actually printed on the box made us all very ill ...

--

Warren Marshall - Professional Nuisance<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
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