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Thread: openDarkEngine

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2005
    Location: Prague

    openDarkEngine

    Hi guys!

    Because there was only a little echo about Opensource thief engine (except for kerrle, who said he likes to work alone), I started the effort myself.
    After some time of figuring out, I started a project openDarkEngine.
    Today I uploaded a first testing viewer, which is capable of loading and displaying Thief 1/Gold levels (well texturing goes wrong sometimes).

    The viewer is only for testing/developing purposes (a quick hack), and needs Irrlicht to work (This won't be the final engine, Irrlicht is not able to display lightmaps of needed counts - 17000 for level0).

    Now I'm trying to find a right engine for the purpose of this project (seems that Crystal Space is the right choice).

    The result of this effort, which I hope will some day be in existence, is a replacement engine for DarkEngine based games.

    Everyone is invited to cooperate.

    Well tell me what you think.

  2. #2
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    "Dark Mod shot the food."

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Back Home
    Good luck with that.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2005
    Location: Visual C++ (Hungary)
    You might want to look into OGRE (www.ogre3d.org), it's the best opensource graphics engine I know of.

  5. #5
    I don't know, it's far too much work if you're unable to bring over/incorporate...well, everything really into the new open engine, not just levels but seriously everything, a new engine that functions requiring a full Thief install to use files from, only super duper modifiable.

    And that's probably too much work too.

    But good luck anyway, an open dark engine would still be awesome.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: Sheffield, UK
    OMG this would mean .... documentation

    you are taking on a serious amount of work there, hope you do it, it would be brilliant

  7. #7
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    All optimistic people in this thread-- wake up. It's never, EVER going to happen.

    The intricacies of the Dark Engine are barely understood even by people who've been DromEding for years. Creating a 100% compatible reproduction of this engine would be beyond the capacity of a well-funded team of full-time professional programmers, let alone some part-time amateurs.

  8. #8
    I don't think its that bleak - they don't have to reverse engineer the DarkEngine so much as just re-create the same features.

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2004
    Location: Florida

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2005
    Location: The limbo region of hell
    I love the idea, but I have the usual question. Is the Thief license public domain yet? If not then an engine that could play the games would be a copyright infringement. If all you are creating is an editor though, I am not sure where that lies legally speaking. It would probably be ok to make an editor if you still needed the original game engine to play resulting levels.

    I really hate to bring that up, because I personally could care less, and wish that everything Thief (and Blood) related was available to the fans with no strings attached. If you make it, I'm sure I would use it. Of course I have the originals, so I wouldn't be breaking any copyrights, but I'd use it even if I didn't, and I'd just be quiet about it.

    But the subject appears to be a very hot one in the modding community, so I felt obliged to mention it.

  11. #11
    Yes Jonsey - this open source Thief is just like the project you posted the image to - a new front end that just uses the old media - maps, textures, etc. The rest is programmed from scratch.

  12. #12
    BANNED
    Registered: May 2005
    Location: Columbus, Ohio
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane
    . Creating a 100% compatible reproduction of this engine would be beyond the capacity of a well-funded team of full-time professional programmers, .

    *laughs* yeah, if they do nothing but eat Cheetos all day. Think of what you said. "WELL-FUNDED. FULL-TIME. PROFESSIONAL."

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2002
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by kamyk
    I love the idea, but I have the usual question. Is the Thief license public domain yet? If not then an engine that could play the games would be a copyright infringement.
    If that were the case, then also OpenOffice wouldn't be allowed to read Word DOC files. Technically this is the same, and I'm sure that MS would have taken it down if they would have such an easy excuse to do so.

    The same holds true for MAME and other emulators.

    As long as he doesn't distribute any original files with his engine, he can do whatever he likes.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2002
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane
    The intricacies of the Dark Engine are barely understood even by people who've been DromEding for years.
    Dromeders don't need to understand everything in order to create FMs. The goals are quite different.

    Creating a 100% compatible reproduction of this engine would be beyond the capacity of a well-funded team of full-time professional programmers, let alone some part-time amateurs.
    You mean, just as it is beyond some amateur developers to create a professional game?

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2005
    Location: Prague
    Hi guys!

    Thanks for the reply.

    I forgot to put a link to the SF page, so I do that now:
    http://sourceforge.net/projects/opde

    ASSIDRAGON: About the engine: I've been looking at the ogre engine, but it seems that it would be very hard to implement it there, because one would have to write the whole scene display system... Things will maybe change after ogre Dagon release, which should have meshbuffers, texturing, visibility solvers and those things acessible directly.
    So I'm now trying to study CrystalSpace, as this has pseudodynamic lights allready in (swichable lightmapped lights - as DarkEngine has), and also it will calculate new lightmaps for you. Problem is that it primary knows only to access XML files, so I will have to write a plugin.

    Also, I don't say this project will take few weeks (It took me ~3 months (evenings) to decode WR chunk, which holds the 3D data of the mission Map)

    Bye Volca

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: May 2005
    Location: Shenzhen, China.
    Why not start out by creating a user friendly, fully windows compliant, intuitive, drag and drop Editor to replace Dromed ? Oh what a sweet joy that would be

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Prince Edward Island, Canada
    ...or better yet...come over to Dark Mod and grab the GTK Radiant source code. You could help us write a customized version for Dark Mod. Just to settle any rumors...no, we aren't rewriting the GTK editor as we're far too busy but I wouldn't mind recruiting someone to do it.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by malau
    Why not start out by creating a user friendly, fully windows compliant, intuitive, drag and drop Editor to replace Dromed ? Oh what a sweet joy that would be
    COOKIE CUTTER SHITTY VICTORIAN MANSION CREATOR MAKER FOR DUMMIES V1.0!!!!!!!!!!!!! OMG PLZ

    totttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttt

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Back Home
    Yes, a customised GTkRadiant would be awesome.

  20. #20
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Prince Edward Island, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by Fingernail
    Yes, a customised GTkRadiant would be awesome.
    Damn straight. Don't get me wrong, I love DoomEdit...but the current GTK build just 'feels' better in some ways.

  21. #21
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by sparhawk
    You mean, just as it is beyond some amateur developers to create a professional game?
    No.

    Do you have the slightest comprehension of how quirky and hackish Dark is? For something like this to be useful, it would have to reproduce every weirdness of the Dark Engine down to the tiniest jot and tittle. Otherwise it would break a great deal of existing FMs, and probably some OMs too.

    Reverse-engineering isn't easy. Remember the old Atari 2600 game system? Emulators for that simplistic little thing are STILL being refined.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2005
    Location: The limbo region of hell
    As I said before, please do release it. If you can get all the nuances, and full compatibility into a windows interface that is easier to use, I would nominate you for sainthood.
    Last edited by kamyk; 8th Dec 2005 at 13:09.

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: Go is to the fountain.
    It won't be done. Not because it can't be done, but because the creator will get stuck and/or bored somewhere along the way.

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2002
    Location: Germany
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane
    For something like this to be useful, it would have to reproduce every weirdness of the Dark Engine down to the tiniest jot and tittle. Otherwise it would break a great deal of existing FMs, and probably some OMs too.
    Yeah. That could become a problem.

    Reverse-engineering isn't easy. Remember the old Atari 2600 game system? Emulators for that simplistic little thing are STILL being refined.
    I know that reverse engineering isn't easy. I was doing this a great deal of my life, though I have stopped mostly some years ago, because it gets boring after some time.

  25. #25
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Then you should know that's it's virtually impossible to reverse-engineer the precise behavior of multiple systems that run simultaneously and interact in upredictable ways, or systems that sometimes behave in a non-deterministic fashion.

    It's impossible. Even with the source code it would be an incredible challenge, since so many missions depend on these emergent timing quirks.

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