Talk:Alien Swarm (engine branch)
A "In contrast to Source2007/OB"
First of all; is this the best page for this?
Though, a lot has happened between 2007 and 2010. And a lot might be true if you compare to the L4D1/2, Source2007, or Portal 2 engine. But this is the newest engine we have any code for. Mod makers looking for something better might look at AlienSwarm, but might only see a top-down and a lot of work to make work for anything else. I think we should point out the differences between the two engine branches. I'll go ahead and start a list, though, I want to supply sources for my information, but I don't have the time and/or ability to confirm. But I'll go ahead and still list them, with the only real confirmation is what I've heard or personally seen. I'll update this with more information as I get it.
Faster model rendering(TODO: How much faster?)
Faster shadow mapping( Src)
Less self shadowing errors with shadow mapping(TODO: Get picture)
Faster particle rendering(TODO: Find proof)
Newer and better looking lighting model(TODO: Pictures)
Depth of field with near and far focal points
Can load VPKs(TODO: Excluding the ability to easily load VPKs from other VPK-based games, why is this good?)
Can't load GCFs(so content from them must be extracted first: HL2, HL2:EP1, HL2:EP2, Portal 1)
No custom shader support(Though, it's possible with a work. But this information is not easily accessible)
By default is a top-down shooter(Only a con if you want something drastically different like an FPS)
- wanted to take the time to comment on these and iterate further from what I myself as well have managed to gather in terms of performance and stuffs:
Faster model rendering(TODO: How much faster?) -About 3x faster. From what i've noticed is generally vertex and texture transform times seem to make the most sense as to whats been improved. Fast path rendering just generally is much more efficient now.
Less self shadowing errors with shadow mapping(TODO: Get picture) -In our cascadded tests shadow bleeding still seems pretty fucked. it's for sure not as bad as source 2007. Though i've noticed shadowbias is actually worse in ASW. Setting it to better values results in worse noise and artifacting than in source 2007. though that might be fixable via a different shadow filter, and doing some actual clipping on how the shadowmap is rendered.
Faster particle rendering(TODO: Find proof) -yeah this is totally 100% true. The particle format changed when l4d shipped. Valve did a ton of optimizations in general to make particles cheaper, but it seems the big changes were just in multicore.
Can load VPKs(TODO: Excluding the ability to easily load VPKs from other VPK-based games, why is this good?) -You can make your own VPK's actually. It is pretty handy for loading in and streaming and stuff.
No custom shader support(Though, it's possible with a work. But this information is not easily accessible) Turns out we've gone and fixed that. Thanks valve for taking two years to get around to the solution, oh wait, you didn't...
By default is a top-down shooter(Only a con if you want something drastically different like an FPS) I think we should make a mention about the ASW skeleton. Honestly that should be released, and improved on in full. Right now it's just the bare skeleton.
I'll comment on more of these later.--MrFourVideoCards 16:14, 16 February 2012 (PST)