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Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
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Lavarider Offline
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Post: #1
Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
Hello all! Here's the deal. My team and I are planning a large-scale RTS, something comparable to Command and Conquer 3 or Starcraft 2. We have been searching for an engine to base it off of, and have narrowed it down to 2 possibilities-C4, and Esenthel. I wanted to ask a few simple questions to help us decide. First of all, is this engine capable of such a thing? Can it support the specified top-down camera system with dedicated minimap support? How would you say, from experience (if any) that Esenthel performs (assuming a high-level hardware rig) when facing a possible situation of 100 or more separate entities active on the screen at once, some at or exceeding 5000 polygons? How receptive is the engine to implementation of new systems (i.e. Construction arrays, specified GUI operations, inclusion of custom harvestable resources, etc)? Finally, does Esenthel have compatibility with any kind of scripting system, or can said system be integrated into the engine? We wish to make the game moddable by users, so having a scripting system like LUA or Python that the average Joe can pick up would be a necessity. Thanks!
01-20-2011 09:42 AM
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BlackHornet Offline
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Post: #2
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
i think it should be doable, but having 100 elements on screen with more than 5000 polys is bad anyway, because you won't see any of the details. With LODing you might be able to this, but it also depends on the amount of bones the models will have.

100 models with around 100 bones each and 5000-10000 polys each...i think even UnrealEngine will get laggy ^^

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01-20-2011 03:52 PM
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baphomeh Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
I agree with blackhornet ..definitely need to utilize lots of LOD for that.. Strange that you did not also consider UDK (in addition to Esenthel and C4)
01-20-2011 04:21 PM
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Lavarider Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
You know what? We never even thought of using UDK...I suppose its reputation as a FPS engine threw us off a bit. Maybe I'll have more of a look at it. By the way, I wrote the former post at 2:000 a.m. so it was a bit...basic. Of course there will be substantial amount of LODing-even the most basic rts does that or dies-my post was assuming the worst situation with the highest graphics settings possible and closest zoom, etc, etc. I was less hoping to get an idea of whether Esenthel could render all that at full speed, as much as whether or not it could perform adequately under such stress (assuming once again a high powered gaming rig). However, a quick question first-what is it about the UDK that would make it so good for what we want to do-I thought it was an FPS engine only.
01-20-2011 04:38 PM
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Zervox Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
Ok, forget the thought of making something comparable to such High-end developed games. This I say because of the questions you ask.

My guess: it is more than capable if you care to do some optimization yourselves. Can you show me a RTS game with more than 4k poly for each model?
Personally my tests with 5k character models, each with 5 different parts and 56 bones.
Comparison:
the upcoming Total War Shogun 2 has
52 bones per character vs 56.
some troops will have as many as 1000 polygons per unit vs I tested with 5k polygon.
My guess, my 2048x2048 textures were also higher than Shogun2 will have, I guess they use max 1024x1024 at close.

I got 78 Characters on screen without too much optimization. included were 48x 12k houses. and 40x 1k poly trees. Every object had 3-4 textures applied, specular,normal,color and detail.

How receptive is the engine to implementation of new systems (i.e. Construction arrays, specified GUI operations, inclusion of custom harvestable resources, etc)?

Construction arrays
Well, first I have to ask, what is this array, because from what I see you say harvestable resources is a core engine feature. do you mean constructors of classes or do you mean in-game buildings? even though I bet both are possible. and I am certain the last one is possible.

specified GUI operations
Implement your own GUI if absolutely needed.

custom harvestable resources -> this is gameplay feature and got nothing to do with the engine. and yes this is easy, I made such a feature from pieces of the bloody massacre code and simplifed and modified it.

LUA, Phyton can indeed be implemented or any scripting language, its up to you on how advanced you want to make it.

on the C4 Engine only RTS game I've seen from it is the bloody tide
http://bloodtide.demalus.com/index.php?p...ct=general

it got a basic tutorial I guess on the wiki but the tutorial only goes through what every basic RPG game usually contains.
EG: unit/character/enemy selection in other word
Unit movement = click & move.

Camera is certainly possible. As I think every game engine which is generic in game types allows you to make a RTS camera.

UnrealEngine is not catered towards RTS or MMO so that rules the question out, certainly possible if you had the source code to the pro super expensive UnrealEngine and not the indie UDK one but yeah 100x 5-10k poly characters all active AI will get laggy.

Not to be against C4, but it's very pro Nvidia based meaning you will make it unplayable for ATI/AMD users, they might have to play at low, and Nvidia can play with older video cards at high. from most projects I've seen and tested they are also every single one unstable eg: sudden FPS drop at simple scene, objects falling through terrain/objects.
01-20-2011 04:46 PM
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Lavarider Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
Ok then, that rules out C4 for us then-our entire group uses Ati cards. When I said 5k polys per unit, I was looking at the worst possible situation-the superunits like the Titan battleship have around 5k, but most units are FAR below that, infantry average less than 1000. Im just one of those who likes to prepare for the worst I could throw at my game before I have to rather than at the time I need to. When I said construction arrays, I meant our team's term for the system of building construction we have designed-you wouldnt know what I meant. My apologies, like I said, I wrote that article at 2 am. grin
01-20-2011 06:13 PM
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Zervox Offline
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Post: #7
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
10k poly on a few selected units is no problem, as long as you dont expect to lets say max 5 per player when there is hundreds of other units running around.

Well your team's term of constructing buildings isn't a well known term, so why would you ask especially if you say that no one would understand?

Well I didnt read your post before mine because it got posted while I wrote. pfft
(This post was last modified: 01-20-2011 07:06 PM by Zervox.)
01-20-2011 06:22 PM
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Driklyn Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
(01-20-2011 09:42 AM)Lavarider Wrote:  How would you say, from experience (if any) that Esenthel performs (assuming a high-level hardware rig) when facing a possible situation of 100 or more separate entities active on the screen at once, some at or exceeding 5000 polygons?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4qngdF1sYg&hd=1#t=3m56s
01-20-2011 09:37 PM
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BlackHornet Offline
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Post: #9
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
The scene mentioned above wouldn't be any problem for UDK i suppose. when performance is going down, in most cases its CPU, not GPU...and CPU is slowed down if you have MANY animated bones...means 100 characters with 100 or 150 bones each to be animated (fully rigged skeleton with hand bones, complete face bones for facial animations etc.)

With UDK in addition you have to take the UScript interpreter into account which isn't that bad, but its about 10-20% slower than plain c++ development.

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01-21-2011 08:23 AM
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Esenthel Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
(01-21-2011 08:23 AM)BlackHornet Wrote:  With UDK in addition you have to take the UScript interpreter into account which isn't that bad, but its about 10-20% slower than plain c++ development.
Let me just add to discussion, I'm working right now on integrated scripting in the engine, as mixture of c++ and c#.
The scripting will be integrated in Editor (as new mode "Code Editor").
What's great is that it will have full c++ performance, and simplicity of c++/c# (how will it work it's a secret for now)

btw uscript is only 10-20% slower than c++? or did you mean 10-20% performance of c++.
I think interpreters will always be much slower.
01-21-2011 07:52 PM
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Driklyn Offline
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Post: #11
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
(01-21-2011 07:52 PM)Esenthel Wrote:  I'm working right now on integrated scripting in the engine

Woooo!!! Can't wait. smile
01-21-2011 08:07 PM
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baphomeh Offline
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Post: #12
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
awesome news Esenthel!!
01-24-2011 08:33 PM
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Barthap Offline
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Post: #13
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
I hope scripts will can compile. For example in lua compiled scripts run faster
01-24-2011 10:20 PM
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Chris Offline
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Post: #14
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
Would we be able to access the scripting interface for our own games too? Or is it just the editor? Most of the game i've been making uses a custom in-game editor. Performance sounds great smile
01-24-2011 11:12 PM
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Esenthel Offline
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Post: #15
RE: Planning RTS-Is Esenthel adequate?
It's gonna be only available from the editor, and it's gonna work like that:
you write source codes (*.es - Esenthel Script) in Code Editor, then you can push button and it will automatically convert it to Visual Studo project .vcproj, .cpp files, compile it for you using VS compiler. and run the generated .exe (all automatically)
basically it's gonna be c++ editor, however with some cool additions:
-syntax more similar to c#
-no need to separate your sources into .h and .cpp files, this will be done automatically
-much better autocompletion/intellisense than VS, it will work more like Visual Assist.
-it's gonna be much easier to run/setup than VS and its projects/solutions/configurations
-some other stuff that I've forgotten or will come along wink
This can work as complete replacement for VS, however it's gonna be optional, you get to choose to use VS or Code Editor.

This is only #1 scripting improvement.

#2 will be later, and it's gonna be the visual scripting, event programming, like something node based "onPlayerEnter -> PlaySound"
01-24-2011 11:41 PM
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