A cool ray trace game development, interested?

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  01 January 2013
A cool ray trace game development, interested?


A project that won't suit everyone, I know...

I bought too many PC games that appear to be direct ports from consoles. I'm disappointed in general at PC game graphics and want to start a project, more of a showcase to what's possible on a PC. Hopefully to kick start game companies to go beyond pumping out diffused type polygons.

At the moment, I've developed a real-time ray tracing engine that I think's got potential. It's NVIDIA only for the moment but I'm looking at porting to cross platform. Find info about it here .
It's got other things such as bump/displacement mapping, soft shadows, spline patches etc.

I'm currently writing a c++ plugin that will live sync with Maya and V-Ray. At the moment works by importing from 3DS Max and can also reads V-Ray properties.

I'd like to do a simple game level (of course, nothings really simple) that incorporates plenty of real-time reflection, refraction (proper, not screen space or baked in/projected environment maps) and soft lighting. Sort of graphics game engines have trouble with.

The game... I'm thinking something like the start of Blade Runner. Glass buildings everywhere, spaceships, with dog-fights and just shooting and blowing sh*t up.

I'm looking for people to collaborate with. There's no money involved for the moment. Not until there's something cool to show people then who knows. Kickstarter? Or maybe a publisher will think it's so cool they'll pump up cash to do the rest.

If you are a 3D artist and want to do something special and defining then definitely get in contact? Also need help with programming physics, so if you know that, then also do get in contact.

Email jules*at*magictownmedia.com or reply to this thread.


P.S. I do think now is the best time as the hardware is rapidly getting faster and other game companies maybe capitalising too much on past achievements.
  01 January 2013
Question: Why will you succeed in making a realtime raytracing game engine when so many before you have failed?
Matthew O'Neill
  01 January 2013
I haven't head of any game companies releasing ray traced games and failing. But if you have links then good to learn from that.

Also objectives are different. Games companies have many mouths to feed and are driven with commercial goals in mind.

My engine performance is good on a GTX 570 and also GTX 470. I haven't tried Kepler, but will have a machine with a card next week. Also my engine is a hybrid, so does do game engine techniques as well such as shadow mapping and deferred lighting, level of detail etc.

Occasionally something comes out to shake up the industry and people think where did that come from. Would be nice to be part of a project that does just that, and never a better time in my opinion.


P.S. I should also add there are more ways nowadays to distribute games too.

Last edited by Jules123 : 01 January 2013 at 07:36 PM.
  01 January 2013
I was going to reply with a snarky "It doesn't matter how your game is rendered, it matters how it plays" comment, but instead I'll just ask: What difference do you think raytracing makes? Why should any gamer care about whether a game is realtime raytraced? Pretend I am a publisher and you are trying to explain how this will mean more sales or users.

  01 January 2013
You MIGHT want to take a look at this before launching into your project:
  01 January 2013
Hey man,

Do you have any videos of what you have so far in action? It looks really neat, and I would love to see more!

  01 January 2013
If a game stood out that looked like movie graphics rather than a more diffused or baked-in look, probably get a lot of free press. People will blog about it, media will talk about it, because it's a new way, and something cool to talk about and to spread the word. Plus screenshots would look fantastic!... You got free marketing right there.

Do we always have to go through a big publisher now to sell a game, with today's online distribution? I thought that had changed with Steam and Origin etc.?

  01 January 2013
Why does that design idea sound familiar..



Aren't there already features that simulate almost everything in various engines?


(yes I know they are not doing 100% raytracing, but if it looks good, why does it matter?)

DX11 demo from a few months ago..


I'm sure eventually all those features will be commonplace because the hardware can just crush it, but it should always be about faking it.
  01 January 2013
Hi AJ,

I'll do some vids this weekend. I'm up to my neck in other stuff at the moment.

Also, I'm not expecting this as a big full-time project, this is definitely part-time/spare time. I know how busy everyone is. I'm more expecting a game with quality rather than quantity, so a smallish level with all the game play mechanics. Then see what people think. Hopefully they'll love it and want more!

With Skype and other communication tech, it's a lot easier to do this type of collaboration I feel.

  01 January 2013
This is a nice path-tracing engine for games.. http://raytracey.blogspot.se
-=TLU, INSERTCOIN, CGS=- -=LW, SOFTIMAGE, Xsens MVN, RED ONE, Messiah:S, MaxwellRender etc=-
  01 January 2013
Hi Hypercube,

It was funny, at least to me. I was at a talk given by Hannes Appell (Crytek). CryEngine, I think is really good, but when it came to the cut-scenes in Crysis, the one showing a close-up of the suit, they had to render out that traditionally in a 3D modelling package, rather than use their real-time engine, because it had reflections.

I don't think any of those engines can do what I see on the cinema screen in the movies. I think I'm talking about taking a restrictive type of environment, so there is not too much to do, and delivering movie quality, which nowadays means ray-traced.

  01 January 2013
I think you are putting the cart before the horse.

Creating a GAME is ridiculously difficult. Like really. Really really. Take this from someone who is doing a very simple game, with a fully working existing engine...and who is 2 years into development.

If you are just wanting to show off your engine, rather create a tech demo...something like "The Samaritan".
  01 January 2013
Hi Pyke,

It does depend on the scope of your project.

And yes, I am already doing a tech demo. I'm using it for back drops in a fantasy short film, being filmed in a green screen studio and for previs work. Doing camera motion tracking and scanning in 3D environments etc.

It struck me, why not do a game with it too? As I mentioned in my first post, it won't suit everyone. May take 2 years? I think I messed around too much without focus the last two years anyway. 2 years from now, could have a genre defining game demo? It's surprising how fast time flies.

As Pyke says, be warned this is difficult, but life is difficult.

  01 January 2013
Originally Posted by Jules123: I think I'm talking about taking a restrictive type of environment, so there is not too much to do,

Who would want to play a game like that? I think gameplay and the fun factor will outweigh graphics everytime. I mean, look at all the retro arcade games/iphone games that are fun to play, and the graphics are anything but photoreal.
  01 January 2013
Hi wancow,

I don't know much about OpenSubDiv. From the looks of it, it needs to be part of a traditional ray-tracing pipeline and doesn't do ray-tracing itself. I might be wrong?

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