They could have a system were the other players are almost literally invisible in shadow, like the AI in a certain Thief 2 FM. The players' gamma value won't matter then.
EDIT: That paragraph was not exactly a paragon of readability. Let me try again, but with examples. If my opponent is around the corner and out of hearing range, I shouldn't be able to detect him at all. In that situation, the server doesn't even pass his position to the client, so no hacking of just the client will reveal it.
But, what if my opponent is making a little noise, while just his forearm is visible, in a dim shadow? Without cheating, it should be very difficult for me to spot him. But here, it becomes pretty easy to mess with sound settings, video settings, nevermind direct client hacks.
And furthermore, I think that for a Thiefy game, I think the situations where it's hard to detect your opponent are more interesting than the situations where they're just out of sight. A clutz in heavy armor can stand behind a door waiting for someone to come through. Stealth is remaining undetected when you supposedly shouldn't be.
Last edited by Pyrian; 24th Feb 2012 at 11:10.
All good points. It's not so simple it seems.
Changing gamma isn't the easiest way of cheating in the first place, is it? If Thief fans are so good about inventing even more demanding difficulty modes, why drop the idea of reasonable multiplayer gameplay altogether only because cheating could occur? We all know that it's more fun without it and I don't doubt that this approach of playing will have at least some place inside the MP community... if there is one.
For example, I don't play Diablo (1, 2, or 3 when it comes out,) online (though I will play on LAN with friends.) So, if Thief 4 has online options, I hope it is LAN able or can be set up with strongly controled participation (game can be set to only play with those you know & trust.) I would also hope it has a full and complete single player mode.
Actually, I don't see what active camoflauge has to do with it at all. Counter-strike had shadows, and easy ways to make opponents easily visible in shadows, and that sort of cheating was a problem, albeit not the biggest. So, claiming that this sort of thing won't happen strikes me as ridiculous, although I certainly wouldn't take it to Beleg's hypothetical "it might be hacked so never do it" extreme.
Even among people who aren't hacking, a simple difference in monitors can make a significant difference in gameplay (and that's potentially true for single-player, too, if you're facing other thiefy types, although the Thief series hasn't really featured such, despite the supposed ones in Thief 3 which were about as subtle as Hammerites).
What you do instead is read the player's "visibility" value and apply alpha channel to the player's textures based on that value. Which literally turns him invisible based on how well hidden he is. Which is exactly how it works in other FPSes.
That you have no idea how human eye works?
I'll take that as a "no".
ITT Koki argues against being "harder to spot" as a Thief game mechanic.
(And does so by citing a game mechanic that mostly does exactly that through transparency, except that's apparently not what he meant.)
Koki's argument seems to be that the simplest form of stealth in games is easy to cheat just by raising the gamma, but that other forms of stealth are harder to cheat and seem to work ok in other games, so should be ok to use in Thief 4. He (she?) seems to want "harder to spot" mechanics in the game, and seems to be argueing that it works fine in other games so should be possable in Thief 4. At least that is my take on his (her?) posts.
BTW - from what I understand gamma increases the brightness differential between pixels. So if 2 pixels have a brightness differential of .01 (for example,) raising the gamma would increase that to .02 then .03 etc... This has an overall effect of making the image look "brighter" but what it actually does is enhance slight differences into more visually obvious differences. So, if you have a dark image overlaid on another image that is not quite the same level of darkness, then the overlaid image becomes more obvious. Thus the simple camo method of just relying on a dark suit to blend into a dark background, is negated because the minor differences become major differences. So gamma is not just a "brightness" adjustment, and does not adjust all pixels equally, that's why it isn't just called "brightness" like the control on most monitors are called (which do adjuat all pixels equally.) Also, even when adjusting all pixels equally (via the brightness adjustment on a monitor,) minor differences can become easier to see. Gamma would be more accurately described as a brightness+contrast adjustment.
I do have to disagree with Koki on one thing. On open play servers, the other forms of stealth are hacked and cheated on a regular basis. My brother-in-law is an avid player of many of those said games, and the language coming from his "man cave" when he plays on open servers is rather pungent in the extreme. Sure, they work great, as long as nobody cheats, but it seems at times that almost everyone does cheat on open servers. It is this reason that I no longer play on open servers, no matter how much I might like the game in question.
Last edited by Pheonix; 29th Feb 2012 at 06:04.
What I think Pyrian was talking about and which koki sort of took out of context or didn't quite get his point, was that there's a difference between active camouflage (e.g. cloaking) and just being hard to see (e.g. standing in shadows.)
In the former, that's obviously a solution to mask the player completely (actually, that's not quite correct considering you could see the outline or whatever of a character if you look carefully) -
if that's what you want but what if you only want it to be harder to spot someone?
Then there would have to be a way to make them harder to see via shadows, but then you run into the whole monitor brightness arguement. So I don't really see the latter method being as effective as the former method that koki was referring to. EDIT: I see koki had put a solution up about changing the alpha channel. I guess that works. What FPSs in question I'm wondering though.
I agree that being harder to spot versus being entirely invisible is more desirable, at least in reference to a thief game, not an FPS. I guess it goes back to the whole "ill assume that there are some players out there who won't abuse the stealth system."
Last edited by sNeaksieGarrett; 29th Feb 2012 at 21:07.
If the player's position is transferred to another player's machine, it's known to that player, period. And we didn't even touch players which are spying for the other side via Skype or redirecting the game data stream.
Absolutely. It doesn't matter whether the game uses alpha transparency or hides the player - the game client can NEVER be trusted. It does complicate matters as it means that the server needs to know the orientation of players as well as their location (otherwise you could easily detect when someone is behind you).
Someone who speaks Dutch? GamersNET RADIO: http://www.gamersnet.nl/radio/play/?id=128
Het was een rustige week in de game-industrie, maar toch gaan Leon en Peter proberen het uur vol te krijgen. Geruchten waren er gelukkig wel, met onder andere GTA IV: Stories en een eventuele opkomende trailer van Thief 4.
"Het was een rustige week in de game-industrie, maar toch gaan Leon en Peter proberen het uur vol te krijgen. Geruchten waren er gelukkig wel, met onder andere GTA IV: Stories en een eventuele opkomende trailer van Thief 4."
"It has been a quiet week in the games industry, but regardless Leon and Peter will try to fill the hour. Luckily there were some rumors, among them GTA IV: Stories and a possible upcoming trailer of Thief 4."
Within the show they briefly talk about the Thief games being old but 'awesome' (one of the hosts' favorite words). The rumor is that the Thief 4 trailer has been ready for over a year. No mention on where they got this morsel of useless info.