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Too Human No Longer an Unreal 3 Title? 50

1up is reporting that Silicon Knights, makers of Eternal Darkness and the upcoming Too Human, may have decided to drop the Unreal 3 Engine from Too Human. The company is reportedly having big problems getting Epic's powerful product to work well with their title on the 360. The plan is now that they will be crafting their own rendering systems for use with the game.
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Too Human No Longer an Unreal 3 Title?

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  • by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:03PM (#15903797)
    they're switching to the DNF engine.
    • No kidding. It's not as though reimplementing the Unreal/Source/Id engines is something that can be done on a whim during a project. All of those were multi-year efforts based on already-working previous versions. They might as well rewrite DirectX while they're at it, for the "best possible experience".
  • Woah (Score:4, Funny)

    by bcat24 ( 914105 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:03PM (#15903800) Homepage Journal
    That's just unreal! No, wait, it's not Unreal anymore! That's unreal! Aaahh, I'm so confused!
  • by creimer ( 824291 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:08PM (#15903833) Homepage
    Is the Unreal 3 engine too UNREAListic to be too human?
  • by CaseyB ( 1105 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:11PM (#15903862)
    They've already blamed the platform for the failure to complete this title more than once.

    It's like that old saying: Give up on one platform, shame on the platform.

    Give up on 3 platforms ... give up ... Can't give up again!
  • NDH Syndrome (Score:5, Insightful)

    by RingDev ( 879105 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:45PM (#15904137) Homepage Journal
    Not Designed Here syndrome. It can usually be averted by reviewing investments in 3rd party solutions, acquiring new 3rd party solutions, or by planning from the start to use an in house solution.

    At this point, it will likely mean project failure. The organization's core capability is making games, not game engines. Not only is there the huge scope of creating the engine, testing, debugging, and optimizing, but there is the legal liability in it also. If their engine designers have been staring at Unreal3 engine code for the last 6 months, and now decide to create their own engine, what is the likelihood that they will borrow either code or concepts from the Unreal engine? That could turn around and bite them hard in a trade secrets and copy right lawsuit.

    -Rick
    • That is a good point I was always wondering about. If you license an engine for one project, from which point are you considered "clean" to start a new engine?
      • Probably never, but then again most game houses rarly build their own engine (atleast successfully).

        I wonder if any teams have ever licensed multiple engines and used pieces from each. Would it be legal, would it be practical..?
    • Re:NDH Syndrome (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MindStalker ( 22827 ) <mindstalker AT gmail DOT com> on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:58PM (#15904225) Journal
      Exactly, I think they'd be better off obtaining permission to highly modify the UnReal engine. No reason to completly scrap usable code you've already licensed.
      • Re:NDH Syndrome (Score:1, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Exactly, I think they'd be better off obtaining permission to highly modify the UnReal engine. No reason to completly scrap usable code you've already licensed.


        If you pay for the Unreal license, you can modify it however you like without further permission. You can replace, remove, or rewrite any part of it you want.

        Several licensees have done just that.

    • by Rayonic ( 462789 ) on Tuesday August 15, 2006 @12:21AM (#15908203) Homepage Journal
      IIRC, Too Human was running on a custom engine for most of its development. Then (due to publisher pressure supposedly) the game was switched to the Unreal 3 engine. Now it seems that they're switching back.
  • by El_Muerte_TDS ( 592157 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:45PM (#15904138) Homepage
    Then what about the rest of the engine. A game engine is more than just whatever you put on the screen. If you drop a complete engine you'll also have to implement the rest. Switching an engine is a bad idea when you already did a lot for the game. Dropping an engine and rolling your own is just plain stupid.
  • I'm sure someone might enjoy it on their Xbox 720, PS4, and Nintendo Fire-Water-Enema.
    It's starting to look like too human is the title that goes from "launch window" to "end of console lifespan / close to launch of next system / garbage heap in the backalley" like dinosaur planet or True Fantasy Live Online.
  • by Kardall ( 886095 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @02:00PM (#15904234)
    From people in the industry using UE3, how many of you have had problems developing it for each console? What were the problems experienced? How did you overcome them or did you?

    If a company like Silicon Knights has issues with something, and decides near the end of their products pre-release lifespan, to scrap the backbone of the game and redo it, then there has to be either something very wrong with the Engine, or the platform.

    It's not a light decision. That will set a game back by a huge amount of time, probably inconceivable at this point, because doing their own renderer will take time in and of itself. Then they'll have to adapt everything that they've done to it. Perhaps, they'll just take parts of the Unreal Engine 3 with them, and keep some of the basics? I dunno. Seems kinda weak to say this at the end.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      As a games programmer who has been using UE3 for some time now I can say that this decision doesn't surprise me at all. The performance of UE3 on 360 is pretty bad and a lot of people where I work are getting pissed off with that and with Epic's attitude to licensees. People might point to GoW as an example of a UE3 game running well on 360 but in recent months Epic have been scaling back their lighting pipeline just to get GoW to run at 30 fps. You can absolutely forget about running at 60 fps. There are s
  • This game has been in "development hell" almost as long as Duke Nukem Forever (since 1999) and reeks of the same problems, everytime there is a snag they change engines or platforms. Silicon Knights would have been better off if they had stuck with Nintendo at least then they could ride some Wii hype for a bit. As it is they are a company of talented but evidently misguided developers who havent had a hit game since Blood Omen back in the 90's. You can only ride they hype for so long before no one cares
    • well isn't it being published by Microsoft? I thought part of the reason it'd been in delopment for so long was because they had problems finding a publisher. I think that would make for a good reason why it was hitting the 360 instead of the Wii (or any other console)
      • Actually it was initially designed for the original playstation, then the gamecube, then the xbox and finally the 360. It seems they have a good business model of leaching from a console developer by singing a couple year exclusivity contract then producing nothing but tech demos. I really need to get in on that gig.

        A more detailed write up about their history: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Too_Human [wikipedia.org]
    • This game has been in "development hell" almost as long as Duke Nukem Forever (since 1999)

      Longer than that. I've been told that they were working on it while the original Blood Omen was still in development. That would mean it's been going since 1996 or so.

      I really wish they would just pick a version and release it, and preferably include all the previous unreleased, unfinished versions as bonus material. I'm still disappointed that they didn't include the deleted bits from the N64 version of Eternal Darkne
  • Lame excuse (Score:3, Insightful)

    by hollismb ( 817357 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @02:51PM (#15904736) Homepage
    Perhaps they should talk to UBISoft, because, if I'm not mistaken, both Splinter Cell: Double Agent, and Rainbow Six: Vegas run on the Unreal engine on the 360.
    • Re:Lame excuse (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Traiklin ( 901982 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @03:02PM (#15904854) Homepage
      or better yet, talk to Epic themselves.

      I hear they have a game coming out on the 360, didn't sound like it was giving them much problems using the Unreal engine 3 for it either.
      • yeah, I'd hope that UE3 wasn't giving epic much trouble. hey! and epic's making a game that isn't an Unreal title. Awesome.
      • or better yet, talk to Epic themselves.

        I hear they have a game coming out on the 360, didn't sound like it was giving them much problems using the Unreal engine 3 for it either.

        Of course Epic can make a game with their own engine--they wrote it. Duh. Besides, it's not like they'd talk about it publicly if they DID have problems.

        I'm not insinuating there's any problems with Epic's engine, just that there's a huge difference between using code you wrote and licensing it. You have to get used to what may be

        • that's why you ask for help.

          Epic isn't the kind to go "You want help with what? BWAHAHAHAHAHA! that's a good one *Click*" if you have a problem with something they will help you through it the best they can or fix their engine when to many problems arise.

          Their not Sony of Game Development (before you mods get the trigger finger remember, Sony distributed the Devkits and it wasn't untill 3 or 4 years LATER that they started helping developers with it) or Microsoft of the OS market, if there is a proble
    • Re:Lame excuse (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I don't know for sure, but given the timeframe of that Splinter Cell title I would think it was running on a heavily modified Unreal2.5 rather than Unreal3.

      Speaking as someone working with UnrealEngine3, I can see the reasoning for moving away from the UE3 engine. There are significant problems with workflow, for artists but more significantly for programmers, and there are fundamental problems with the engine itself. It is quite obvious that the guys at Epic aimed far too high when they designed the engine
  • Don't wait for this game to come out any time soon.
  • by dgg3565 ( 963614 ) on Monday August 14, 2006 @05:02PM (#15905858)
    Bioware's Mass Effect is running on Unreal 3 and I certainly haven't heard anything out of them on this. In fact, I cam across one post on the ME forum where one of he developers was just talking about how one of their guys had squeezed out more preformance on the E3 demo by doing an optimization pass. It seems like everyone and their grandmother is using UE 3 at this point and yet not a peep out of any other dev team. And it isn't like Unreal is a new engine with neophyte coders behind it. This is a third generation engine that is built on a code base that has been used in titles from here to Timbuktu. Something seems fishy here.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Bioware's Mass Effect is running on Unreal 3 and I certainly haven't heard anything out of them on this. In fact, I cam across one post on the ME forum where one of he developers was just talking about how one of their guys had squeezed out more preformance on the E3 demo by doing an optimization pass. It seems like everyone and their grandmother is using UE 3 at this point and yet not a peep out of any other dev team. And it isn't like Unreal is a new engine with neophyte coders behind it. This is a third
      • ...and in addition to NDAs and legality, it's also not a particularly good idea to critisize the engine that you're using.

        I mean, there's probably going to be a sticker on the box of all these games saying "Powered by Unreal Technology", the last thing a savvy developer is going to want to do is reinforce any Unreal 3 = Underperforming shiteness rumours before their game gets to market.

        From the few comments we've heard, it sounds like the Unreal 3 engine is okay but 'overshot' the Xbox 360, so anyone us

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