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Multi-Head Gaming 180

Anonymous Coward writes "A new hosted site at PlanetQuake called Multi-Head Gaming has got pictures of Unreal Tournament running on 5(!) monitors and Quake and Quake III Arena running on 2. It has also got a small howto with details how to set it up yourself on Linux and Windows 2000."
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Multi-Head Gaming

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    Hellcats Over the Pacific. Great Sim. And that was ~10 years ago.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Uh, hello? The very first version of DOOM ever released had support for 3 monitors (-left and -right command-line options).
  • by Anonymous Coward
    The technical term for this practice is cheating.


  • by Anonymous Coward
    surely your Peripheral vision (ah! ah!) could notice a big bloody thing running at you out of the corner of your eye. That's why.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Fart down the door, and head straight for your kitchen. Down all the jolt, eat the three week old pizza, and then eat all the leftover GNU from dinner last night.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    and the space between the monitors is just a touch distracting

    Well, you can play tricks with mirrors. Put both monitors facing each other, and then two mirrors forming a V pointed at you. You should be able to see both monitors without seams (So long as you don't move your head too much)
  • you need to look up the word "facetious".

    Nice try. Didn't you know the word "facetious" isn't in the dictionary?



  • In the high school computer lab, we'd take 3 computers each, until one of the upgrades fixed it so that doom used addressed packets, instead of the broadcast mania it had previously engaged in.
  • Really? One of mine plays Unreal and the other plays hide-n-go-seek
  • Doesn't matter. I just did the same thing over two monitors in w98 using D3D instead of software rendering. Works just find on both monitors. Didn't try OpenGL - OpenGL and unreal don't mesh well.
  • Robert Heinlein book, Orphans of the Sky. Boy's magazine type book, pretty short. Obliquely referenced in Time Enough for Love, and a few other books. Fairly hard to come by; hasn't been reprinted in a while.

    Oddly enough, it's listed as a collection of short stories in the Robert A Heinlein FAQ.. ah well, I haven't read it in over 10 years, guess I'm wrong. Could've sworn it was a straight-through novel.
  • If you try to pull the monitor off the firewall mentioned in your sig [] you'd best be prepared for a fight.
  • I use multi-head in X 4.0 w/two different video cards. The distance between the monitors is negligible and actually you kinda get so used to having both that when one is gone you get a tear in your eye :~(.

    I played a Ferarri racing game at Cosi in Columbus, OH and it had three monitors... I really didn't see any problems w/the three monitors (and the space between them) soon you ignore it and it seems like one field, but maybe it has to do w/my use of multihead.
  • by juuri ( 7678 )
    It was.

    I've played doom with 3 machines... all 486s each running in network mode as the same player with a different POV. Basically it sucked. It was pretty slow and buggy and after the novelty wore off you got back to what mattered more. Deathmatch.
    Solaris/FreeBSD/Openstep/NeXTSTEP/Linux/ultrix/OSF /...
  • Ahhh.. Joe-Jim.. that was a real good novel. It really does make you think, that if you're born inside a spaceship like that, how would you know that there is an outside?

  • Thats insane, people with too much time and expensive equipment. I would have so much fun with a CAVE.

  • or is it a bit strange that one use a 2 monitor setup in a game like quake? with the center view being blocked by the edges of the monitors...
  • Heh, that would just be my "plain" firewall, not my 31337 firewall :)
  • Ok Moron. He's talking about UT, or Quake1 (both of which are featured on the site.)

  • by cronio ( 13526 )
    Win2k sucks for games even compared to Win98SE unless you have multiple processors. You'll get a 10% speed increase if you switch to Win98 if you don't have 2 procs. 2 procs won't even help if the game doesn't support them (only q3 does at this time I think), so you'll get better performance if you use Win98 in most games.

  • by cronio ( 13526 )
    Ask any gaming site (well, most...some might not agree)...or any gaming hardware supplier (Alienware for one...they still sell their gaming comps with win98 for this reason). Hell, even MaximumPC said that if you want the best game performance not to upgrade to win2k because of the extra overhead it has (it is NT at its core after all).

  • by cronio ( 13526 )
    Hmm, I could be wrong then, but everything I've heard says otherwise...especially if you have less than 128 megs ram.

  • by cronio ( 13526 )

    Well, I will too, soon...

  • The "practical" solution for the home gamer would be to go to Home Despot and buy some casters, 2x4s and three peices of sheetrock. Build some studwall frames, mount them on casters and then add the sheetrock, painting it white if you have to (its usually pretty white to begin with). You can now align the three walls at the right left/center/right orientation for maximum disorientation. You could probably get away with well-sanded plywood instead of sheetrock, but I think the texture might still be annoying.

    Of course you'll need three XGA-capable LCD projectors, which are pretty expensive unless you're rich AND a geek with lots of sq. footage for this kind of setup. It might not be a bad project for a special event.

    Cooler yet would be a hex- or octagonal room with the 6/8 projectors mounted directly above the player. This wouldn't be too unrealistic if today's games would allow you to network connect extra machines to the "main" client machine but show the view from some angular shift from dead-center; the "slave" clients could just get positional information from the master client and use their own internal CPU and video to do the display. This would prevent extra game server overhead.

    While expensive, this would be an amazing experience not unlike some of the VR rooms or other simulators used by people who play video games as part of the profession, like airline pilots.

    Even a three-headed setup like this would probably be affordable enough that you might be able to make money either with a portable rig rentable for parties or as a fixed site.
  • I remember F-16 Strike Eagle and Chuck Yeagers Air Combat supporting up to 5 monitors on my mac circa 1993 or so. Granted, driving multiple monitors on a 68040 chip with 16 megs of RAM and MacOS behind it was no ones idea of playable but it impressed the chicks. ;)
  • Yes!
  • I think DOOM came with that capability from the beginning, but I'm not sure. There must be some huge DOOM FAQ's out there that will tell you one way or another.

    Torrey Hoffman (Azog)
  • What was the name of the flight-sim on the Mac that used to let you have 3 monitors?

    Flight sims seem to make a more ideal application for multi-head gaming than FPS's, IMHO.
  • I am being aware of the procedure.
    Not having three monitors to try it with, I was asking if anyone could confirm that it actually works. Not all Mac software automatically supports multiple monitors.
    Lord Pixel - The cat who walks through walls
  • I have only one head on my G4 and on my shoulders, but I'd expect this would either just work out of the box on MacOS, which has done multiple monitors since the mid to late 80's, or it'll fail to work completely and there'll likely be no work around.

    Such is often the way on Mac OS.

    Lord Pixel - The cat who walks through walls
  • Well couldn't you just set it to a wider FOV so that everything important is in the center?? (though the updown ratio might be strange)
  • Hmm, yes the article is a bit confusing on the subject. It does hint that you can make a program that would use SMP although your OS does not support this.

    I don't know if anyone would ever do such a program however, since you would most ditch all the points of the OS to make it work. (That is, code directly to the metal, no virtual memory or any stuff like that neither, since it's heavily tied to the processors.)

    So I'd say that according to this you can make a program that will use both processors in ME. But there are no such programs available. It would be a lot more expensive so you wouldn't aim it at the Win98 market, or even Win32. (Most CAD stations run UNIX.)

    Normal programs like Photoshop and Quake3 has SMP support. But they rely on the OS to spread the threads out to the different processors.

    Hope that cleared things up, and it might even have been accurate. (IM-Not-A-Hardware-Engineer, Yet ;-)
  • Problably not 4 AGP slots, but AGP with 4x memory access speed.
  • But how would UT take that? I don't think it would like having only the middle 1/5 of the "screen" be taller than the rest. You'd probably also drop framerate quite a bit...

    Plus, I believe that every one of the screens has to be at a matching resolution and color depth to make it work.
  • I use a Matrox G400 32MB DualHead - 2 monitors running from the 1 AGP card. Apparently Win98 will support up to 9 monitors if you have enough G400's. Not sure if you have to run 1 AGP and the rest PCI though.

    Just flicked through my preferred wholesalers online pricelist and found:

    Epox - VIA, Slot I, 4*AGP, Sound, ATX (6VBA2)

    That could be a mistake though... *shrug*
  • Didn't think of that - good point. What confused me was that this wholesaler uses "1*AGP" to denote "1 2xAGP slot" on other items.

    Anyway, thanks for pointing that out.
  • Yea, I think having 128meg o' ram is the breaking poing in 2k.. anything below and it bogs. I've got a 196 in mine, and it runs really great in games.
  • Not that I'm a huge fan of winblows, but I've actually run QIII under both 98se and 2k on the same machine with no hardware changes. It's far faster under 2k. I could believe 2k server would have more overhead, but 2k pro has far less overhead than win98/95/3.x/DOS. Well maybe not dos. But 98 is still dos at it's core.. and 32-bit runs faster than 16. generally. we all should be using linux anyway.
  • multltihead gets my head spinning. Whaddafucks ammater whith that guy - once the stock exchanges close - you can relax. whys this guy staying at work (conclusion; multihead==finance). This guy actually starts gaming then!!? When I realized that this week wuz going to end well (no stoppages) I got drunk right away.......
  • I'd be suprised if you couldn't change the FOV. I know you can in Quake2.
  • You know Jacob, if you go around talking about two's all the time, the Hooded Fang is going to see through your pseudonym and come after you again...

    note to moderators... just because you don't understand the reference, doesn't mean that others won't either...
  • I have two of those. I call them 'eyes'
  • by treke ( 62626 )
    You play Quake 3 in Windows? Works fine in X for me. Never actually played it in Windows myself.
  • I may point out that there are no SMP athlon boards. So the other one is just taped to the power supply, eh?
  • I haven't tried with two different OSes on the same machine, but given the performance I get on my PIII laptop under Windows 2000, I find this really hard to believe. The graphics card isn't even all that great, either.
  • Ahhh...Must be because I have <brag>256 megs</brag>
  • ...wait, you forgot. First, he'd berate me into releasing all the food under the Gnu Public License and signing all the rights to it over to the FSF. Then he'd eat it. It's free, after all.

    Ok, while we're at it:

    Burst in the door after this, shoot RMS, and declare another victory for the free market and the 2nd Amendment.

    OK I'll stop now.

    WWJD -- What Would Jimi Do?

  • Now I have to go out and drop $3K on monitors and video cards just to keep up!!?!? N0 f41r d00d!

    WWJD -- What Would Jimi Do?

  • Possibly one could just network together a cluster of spare 386's to run the video for them. Then use fiber to connect back to a faster machine. I'm sure that you will be able to find a few spare 386s sitting around. :)-
  • I believe the restriction was only on OpenGL -- AFAIK, you can have Direct3D acceleration using multiple video cards.

    I've seen demos, for example, of the Matrox Dual-Head cards running D3D games in accelerated mode, and I don't think that's any different than this.

  • Yeah, I had tried something like that previously with my TNT and an unaccelerated card. Presumably it doesn't try to resolve the case where part of the view is on one monitor, and part on the other.

    Is it accelerated if the game is wholly on one monitor or the other? (it may be that you have to start it up on that monitor)

    The real benefit of multi-head for games, IMHO, would be "rear view mirrors" or additional map displays -- not simply stretching the image across multiple monitors as in the article...

  • If I remember right, you could do this via network controls on DOOM in c. 1994? (the center screen one 486, and the two 45 degree displays powered by 2 more 486s).

    I can verify that this did indeed work with earlier versions of DOOM; the other machines were basically slave clients. Precluded multiplayer action, though.

    For some reason, this feature was removed from later versions of the DOOM software (1.666?, 1.8? I can't remember).


  • It's time for some games to start supporting multiple monitors for different displays

    Is it really, though? Why should game developers spend any decent amount of time on a feature that only a tiny fraction of a percentage of the users would benefit from? Seems like it would drive the prices of the games up and stretch out the release date...

  • If you could somehow squish the N monitors together, then it would be cool, but those damned borders on each monitor make it difficult on my eyes. I could not imagine playing with more than one monitor unless you could seemlessly connect the various monitors...
  • but i worked with one and he set up something similar for me with a flight sim game. a quadra 800 with a 21" monitor for the the front view, two single page view screens for the side and another single page view screen on the floor for bombing.

    in all the whole thing was pretty cool.

    the year? why it was 1993...
  • Who runs Quake 3 in X? Windows 2000 for the games, baby!

    I like to play games, but I also value my soul...

    Your Working Boy,
  • Actually, this has already become a reality in some ways. If any of you have ever been to a Virtual World site (BattleTech (Mech Combat)/Red Planet (Hovercraft racing)) you'll have seen this in action. A relatively weak computer (PPro200) and a massive video system to control almost a dozen monitors.

    Quite interesting actually.

    Chas - The one, the only.
    THANK GOD!!!

  • Anyone know of a motherboard that has more than one AGP slot? Is this technically possible?

    Technically possible, yes. But since AGP is a port and not a bus, you'd have to find a chipset that has more than one AGP port. I've never heard of any such beast existing. Easiest way would be to have those built under contract by VIA, Intel or someone... if you have a few millions to spare.

  • yeah, it's technically possible. agp is very similar to pci, but it is faster, and you don't have to share the bus with other devices.

    quick example here:
    $ lspci
    00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 440BX/ZX - 82443BX/ZX Host bridge (rev 03)
    (stuff deleted)
    01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: Matrox Graphics, Inc. MGA G200 AGP (rev 03)

    the number in the leftmost column is the pci bus. as you can see, `00' is the `real' pci bus, while the agp bus is `01'. i don't know if this is because agp is just a souped-up pci bus, or if it just looks like one for compatibility. either way, pci is cool.

    so a mobo manufacturer could slap another agp connector on a single agp bus, but since both cards would have to share that bus, you would run the risk of maxxing it out, resulting in crappy framerates.

    what you really want is a mobo with dual agp busses, one slot on each. a quick search on google turns up... a bunch of false positives, like dual-cpu mobos with a single agp port. but i'm sure it won't be long before dual-agp boards are all over.
  • At one point after the DOOM source code was released, somenoe made patches to run DOOM multheaded. One monitor was your regular view, one was 90% left and one was 90% right. Setup like this:

    | O |

    It used three computers and a network game to do this. If you played it cooperative it was like the normal game with the extra views. If you played it deathmatch, you could only have two people in the game (one person on a single screen and one person on 3) - the maximum 4 players.

    I cant seem to find the info or the patches, but they are out there somewhere. My friends and I ran it once. Does anyone know if and where these might still be lurking around?

  • I'm lucky enough to have a projection screen at home. While I haven't played Quake, or other computer FPS shooters on it in ages, I have played various console games with 3d perspective on it. I.e., Golden Eye on N64, various racing games on Dreamcast, etc. I've never had the slightest problem with it, nor have my friends ever complained. However, I only play such games once in a blue moon and for limited periods of time.
  • It is best for a flight simulator, as mentioned above. You can see the "sides" of the airplane by glancing left or right, and the bars between the monitors are kind of like the bars between windows in a car or airplane

    Remember DOOM and the -left and -right options for network play? Did multiple monitors with a network card, not 3 video cards, just 3 computers :)

  • Gosh you know there are a couple of things here that struck me. First off, I was doing this on my Macintosh Quadra 840AV back in 1995? with a game called Hornet. Hornet by Graphic Simulations was originally a Macintosh game and they supported multiple monitors right out of the box. I could set up three monitors with forward and side views and be quite competitive I thought. When it came time to develop the next version of the game, the Mac version was ported from Windows and I lost the ability to use multiple monitors!! Those Bastards.

    The other thing is that looking at these screen shots on this site, the multiple monitors appear to stretch the monitor image over the multiple monitors with difficult breaks right in the middle of the screen where you would want to target. Graphic Simulations did away with this by truly supporting multiple monitors and not having say one intrument overlap on two monitors, or in the first person shoot em up perspective, my rocket launcher would not be split onto two or three monitors making targeting difficult.

  • In games that support it, do video in a window and drag the window across all the monitors. Should work, but be a bit slower than fullscreen mode.
  • Doom 1 did this in a way. You had three separate computers networked together with IPX, and start a left and right and center view with a special command line option.
  • It looks like the 5-monitor NT was in software mode, stretched across 5 monitors (the software renders into system memory, passes it to DirectX, which splits it up and copies into 5 video cards' display memory). It looks like the Linux dual-head system is using 3D/OpenGL acceleration which is supported by GLX. That is much cooler, IMHO.

  • It was funnier when it was being chanted at the convention. (Just in case you were thinking that it would piss the Republicans off. Sorry.)

    Bumper stickers are probably already for sale someplace.


  • Anyone know of a motherboard that has more than one AGP slot? Is this technically possible?

    I've run win98 with 2 monitors, on and off for over a year now. It's great.

    I was first introduced to this on a Mac. We were doing video editing. Work area on one screen, video sample/output on the other. Worked great. And Photoshop multi-head is GREAT. Dump tools and layers, heck, all of you pallettes on the secondary, and use your primary full screen to do editing. Just scroll your mouse off the side of the screen, and it appears on the other.

    Now the reason I asked about dual AGP is that multihead gaming sounds interesting, but my secondary card is a piece of crap PCI, card, and I refuse to buy a good PCI video card, with a spare 16 meg Banshee AGP sitting on my desk.
  • Well, this is probably trolling territory, but hey...

    Win2000 is not too bad for games. Here's what I've found:

    Halflife: Runs fine.
    UnReal Tournament: Runs fine.
    Caesar III: Runs fine.
    Alpha Centauri: Runs fine.
    Diablo II: Runs fine.

    Powerchess (v1): Fails to run
    Star Trek: Birth of the Federation: Won't even install.
    Warlords III: One or two unexplained hangs.

    (Runs fine usually means 5-10+ hours of play.) That's really not so bad. Really, I'd suspect that most of the latest games will run fine.
  • While Mac flight simulators have had the three screen setups back in the early 90s, we're now dealing with games that really require hardware 3D acceleration to function properly. Especially if you want to drive 2 or more screens.

    Problem for Windows is that the DirectX 3D component is currently designed to recognize only one card as accelerated. Wonderfully shortsighted. But i suppose it was just centered around "3D will come from an AGP card and there's only one AGP slot." OpenGL could probably handle it under Windows, but i doubt there's drivers for multi-head support of hardware acceleration out there now.

    Best hope is some people doing work on getting MesaGL working with multi-head under XFree86. I've been running two TNT2's for my X setup for a while now and that works great. So i'd guess it's a matter of getting the GL libs up to speed for working with 2 or more cards at the same time. Probably tricky for dealing with which card does the triangle transforms for triangles that span across screen boundaries.

    Love to have that peripheral vision, though..

  • This would be awesome with a couple of flat panel LCD monitors that don't have the border plastic - stick em all together and it would look like one huge screen

    except that it would be too expensive for almost everyone - at least i can dream, i can't even afford a second monitor itself
  • Hmmm... the instructions in the article tell you to:
    start UT and change the Video Driver to "Software"
    It seems such a waste to drop all that money on monitors and video cards, just to turn around and use software rendering and get 20fps? I'd be much more impressed if hardware rendering could be used.

    (Of course, i suppose some of this could just be my lack-of-five-monitors jealousy talking =-> )
  • I've got two heads, but one does not play games.
  • I can see multi-head setups actually being more useful in other gaming genres, some of which would like to push a tremendous amount of information at the player at once.

    Okay, so a rear view would be nice in an FPS, but I don't think with current technology that we could really take the frame rate hit. On the other hand,

    IMHO, things like flight sims, some driving games, and the occasional RPG, frame rates are of no issue, the game wants to push lots of data, and the viewer actually has time to look at more than one display.

    My $0.02

  • However, since you can adjust the field of view in all the games, you could increase it enough to compensate for the wider screen, angle the side monitors some, and have surround-video. ^_^

    I know in Q3A it's /set cg_FOV = <somedegrees>

    Of course, it also would increase the vertical FOV, so things would be compressed. Hmm . . . someone needs to write a mod for Q3 so that the extra monitors can actually do something usefull. Like, attach one to a specator viewport that is attached to your player's position, then you could point it even behind you and hey, a rear-view mirror! Of course, that would be cheating, and we wouldn't do that.
  • I may actually have to sell my car and current computer in order to spend the rest of my life playing surround-video Quake. Anyone looking to buy an Integra?
  • he needs some of the 32" mitsubishi monitors they have at the conference center i used to work at. not just TVs with scan converters, actual monitors..

    we put quake 1 on a laptop and sneaked in the storage room one night.. hooked the laptop up to the monitor, and routed sound through some really nice headphones.. we could only play for about 5 minutes, though, because we got motion sickness..

  • A friend of mine used to be a huge Warbirds fan about three years ago. He used one 20 inch monitor with a couple of 17's (one on each side of the 20) on his Mac 9600, so he had a full cockpit view. Very cool.

    With any FPS, flight sim, driving game, etc., the more screen real estate you have, the more emmersive the game is.

  • Haha.. lets see three years ago..

    1. 20-inch monitor ~900 bucks, minimum
    2. 17-inch monitor x 2 ~500 x 2
    3. Warbirds ~50
    4. Mac 9600 ~2250 (depends on configuration)

    Total: $4200

    For you $4200 (in Nashua, NH) you could get:

    1. 40-hours flight time w/Instructor $1280
    2. FAA Stage-A check ride $75
    3. FAA Stage-B check ride $75
    4. Private Pilots License Fee $45
    5. Approximately 140 hours rental time for Cessna 172, with gass. $20/hr

    I mean really people, I like a good video game once in a while as much as the next guy, but for christs sake instead of pretending to fly a sweet fighter plane in some covert mission, why not actually go and fly a real plane in real life. I mean really people, get up and GO OUTSIDE. LIFE CANNOT BE LIVED VICARIOUSLY THROUGH A FSKING VIDEO GAME.

    Thats all. Have a good day. AND GO OUTSIDE EVERY NOW AND THEN.
  • It's too bad about the edges of the monitors! That's sort of like how parrots see: they ordinarily would have a big black line down the center of their image (in their brains), but instead they close one eye and turn their heads.
    The world would be a much better place if cathode rays were just allowed to swing freely without borders, irradiating the eyes of all and exciting the phosphors of the world. Ahh, to dream!
  • At the intel Game Demo lab we have a 52" plasma screen that we play quake - or any other game - on.

    it is great - except the fact that it is wider than your direct vision... and in a fast paced CTF game, it makes it really hard to track foes.

    your conical vision is much better suited for 20 - 30"

    But it is REALLY cool to play on a 52" plasma monitor! even if you do get whacked a few more than normal....

    also, You can get dual monitor cards and run multiples in a 98... so for not way too much $$ it would be pretty easy to get 4 monitors on a box. (not too much $ for the cards that is... not the monitors ;)

    but the real problem with multi-screen gaming is the LARGE ASS PLASTIC BORDERS that the monitor manufacturers dont seem to realize are both useless and a pain in the ass. They should focus on full use monitors that allow you to put them next to eachother without big chunks. (the only time this would be semi cool - is if you desing a cockpit interface that thinks the monitor breaks are the window support arms.....)
  • Now, the best thing to do with this is, when someone else is playing, get them to leave for a minute. Then move all the monitors around and watch the fun unfold.
  • 1) I had the impression that multi-head gaming setups were already known. Sure, I've never seen one personally, but it just seems kinda natural for an FPS player to set up something like this. Hopefully vendors will start building this capability in to the extent that you can select # of displays from the game's video options menu.

    2) Buy four video projectors and construct a 180-degree, curved, wraparound screen, ala "Toys." Preferably wear shutter glasses in addition.

    3) ~20fps @ 320x240 on a Voodoo3? It's no GeForce DDR, but c'mon... somebody oughta optimize games/drivers for dual-head gaming.

  • A couple of years ago I was doing something similar with Quake 2 - Before MultiHead was available for Windows/XFree86 (Yes, I know there's been multihead for commercial X-Servers for years, but that's not the point)

    What you do is connect two separate Quake 2 Clients to the same server. You play normally with one of them, and act as a spectator with the second. I would spectate myself, 3rd-person perspective (on the CTF Servers that would support it), and zoom out and up, so that I'd be looking down at my own charater. It was a great way to see anyone that might be creeping up on me from behind, and watching myself get fragged was usually pretty cool too.

    With a third client you could stick with 1st person perspective, and simply "zoom" in as much as possible -- creating a sort of permanent sniper view.

    Note that this works far better on "local" games than it does for internet games. The way that I got around this was to use Microsoft Proxy (at the time I was running NT, nowadays I'd just use a linux IP/Masq box) on my main game station, and then hook up the client(s) through a second adapter. That way, your main machine will get all of the packets that it can handle, and the leftover bandwidth would get sent to the client machines. This probably works better with MS Proxy simply because Linux IP/Masq will split up the connection so much better than MS Proxy. Even if your "client" machines are getting 10 fps or less, you don't really need realtime updates to your "rearview mirror" -- it's not like you can look at it all the time anyway.


  • by Mullen ( 14656 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @01:09PM (#878597)
    Ya, not only that, Win2000 sucks for games too! If your going to sell you soul, go all the way and use Win98SE and get all the bonus cool graphics and sound stuff.

    Playing any game on Win2000 is like playing it on Linux.

  • by Ted Nitz ( 18875 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @12:43PM (#878598)
    and don't forget that with Microsoft's new lisencing plans you may need two copies of Windows.
  • by Azog ( 20907 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @01:11PM (#878599) Homepage
    Don't you think this is a little too close to cheating? You mentioned setting the second PC to a 3rd-person view of yourself.

    Wouldn't it have been much more useful to have it chasecam on your opponents? I think that would definitely count as cheating - at least for a head-to-head game.

    I know that when I would play my roommate, we would yell at each other "Don't look at my screen!" when we were head-to-head in the same room. We often did sneak peeks, though. There's a huge advantage in knowing where your opponent is, what weapon they have, and where they are going.

    So... is it cheating?

    Regardless, it's a neat trick getting it running.

    I might stick that old Voodoo 1 card back in my spare machine and try it myself.
    Torrey Hoffman (Azog)
  • by xtal ( 49134 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:47AM (#878600)

    Using two monitors is a bitch because you're going to make yourself ill trying to target something in the middle of the screen (where the monitors merge).

    Now, if you had three - maybe a 19" in the center and two 17"s for left and right 45 degrees, that would rock pretty hard. Or, I suppose, getting a widescreen view (it would be more useful IMHO to have the 45 degree views).

    If I remember right, you could do this via network controls on DOOM in c. 1994? (the center screen one 486, and the two 45 degree displays powered by 2 more 486s).

    Very cool, though. :)

  • by xtal ( 49134 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:49AM (#878601)
    'nuff said.
  • by Fross ( 83754 ) on Saturday August 05, 2000 @03:00AM (#878602)
    I seem to recall the original Doom shareware release (v1.0*) had a feature whereby you could run it on a network, using three machines as your own. each processor would drive one screen, and one would be center, one left, one right, etc, which you set up on the command line.

    this would be a better solution than the multi-monitor one, as:

    a) you have to have many video cards, using up lots of slots and hence making the machine useless for anything else.
    b) it runs at very, very low res.

    if you could play quake/unreal/strip-frag-poker 2000 on multiple machines that way, you could have each running at their max resolution, have your slower/lo-res machines doing your peripheral vision etc ;)

  • by mattman ( 90069 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @01:36PM (#878603) Homepage
    >Not like too many people in slashdot uses Windows Me and 98 but I want to note that they
    >support multihead/multi-videocards. I tried it in 2D but I'm not too sure about using it in 3D.

    Windows98SE and presumably ME only provide D3D or OGL acceleration on the primary video card. A Voodoo3 can provide Glide compatibility when used as a second video card. This limits the fun for gaming with 3D acceleration.

    I hadn't considered trying to run in SW mode with UT before. I'll try that tonight when I get home. I have a Rage128 AGP as primary and Voodoo3 3000 PCI as secondary on my home machine.
  • by haystor ( 102186 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:53AM (#878604)
    Multi-Head Porn. All the porn, more head.
  • by Xzzy ( 111297 ) <> on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:49AM (#878605) Homepage
    It doesn't increase the range of vision at all.. it just stretches the original pixels to something MUCH wider than it used to be. Notice how the gun the guy is wielding takes up most of two monitors? :P

    Now see, if it actually gave you periphrial vision.. or even if you could turn around in your chair and see what was behind you, THAT would be cool.
  • by trazom28 ( 134909 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:43AM (#878606)
    Since I can only watch one monitor at a time, and the space between the monitors is just a touch distracting, I'll stick to one. It sounds like one of those things that is done, just to say it can be done, but long-term, the world asks.. "why?"
  • by TheSteve ( 149820 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @02:47PM (#878607)
    One thing they should do is clip the edges of the images displayed on each monitor so that the relative edges of the images meet seamlessly between each monitor. When turning or moving, your environment shouldn't jump four inches in either direction as the view is changed!

    If the displays were aligned in this fashion, the illusion of multiple window panes through which one can view a singular world would be experienced. More horizontal stretch would occur, but if a system were to be designed to take full advantage of multiple-monitor displays in providing peripheral vision and side views, the effect would be to allow you to view more of the displayed world, maintaining image aspect ratios and rates of angular movement when moving through the environment.

    It's time for some games to start supporting multiple monitors for different displays. Mech games could take on new dimensions of realism. Flight and driving simulators and games would spring to life! How'd you like to be able to sneak quick glances at your wingman without shattering the reality of the evolving action?

    Reality is simulated best when we move our heads to change the view of our environment - not when we move the view around in a window directly ahead, with us remaining perfectly still. Making sure we match view variations with what our brains expect from solid worlds will make our created worlds even more immersive and lifelike.

    Time to have some fun!
  • by tarsi210 ( 70325 ) <`nathan' `at' `'> on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:42AM (#878608) Homepage Journal
    From the: Why-the-hell-can't-I-find-my-toes? dept.

    I suppose that this multi-head phenomenon is a step in the direction of a VR type of setup, monitors all around and the person in the center. Which sounds cool......really cool.

    The question is, do the architectures that we currently have do multi-head readily? Or will we start having such things as video servers? I can see a future where you have one computer whose sole job is to house 25 video cards and keep them powered. Its mobo would have the chips on it to communicate to the main gaming server via a gigabyte fiber connection, which it would take the signal and demultiplex it so it would run on all video cards, thus giving you awesome multi-head capabilities.

    Why hasn't anyone come up with this stuff?
  • Not like too many people in slashdot uses Windows Me and 98 but I want to note that they support multihead/multi-videocards. I tried it in 2D but I'm not too sure about using it in 3D.

    And now can put two of everything in my gaming computer- 2 OS's, 2 Hard Drive (RAID 0), 2 CD-Roms, 2 floppy drives, 2 GeForce 2 GTS's, 2 Athlons, 2 SCSI cards (one's for raid), 2 power supplys... This my really hurt my two platnum cards. I'll need two jobs. :)

  • by boinger ( 4618 ) <boinger&fuck-you,org> on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:46AM (#878610) Homepage
    The REAL hardcore players play Quake like they play bingo - with anywhere from 8 to 20 simultaneous keyboards and mice, as well as separate monitors. THAT is hardcore!

    ("B-16" "You sank my battleship!" "I-24" "You sank my battleship" "O-71" "You sank....")

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:56AM (#878611)
    This doesn't look too great at the moment - the resolution UT was running at over the five monitors was 1600x200. Not 1200, 200. Each monitor is set to 320x200. And 20fps overall (it was only a AMD 500 though).

    So, it's going to be plenty pixelated, though perhaps it would be nice with a wider FOV setting. Sniping would be hell, though.
  • by kwsNI ( 133721 ) on Friday August 04, 2000 @11:35AM (#878612) Homepage
    I only have one head.



Whenever people agree with me, I always think I must be wrong. - Oscar Wilde