Half Life for Dreamcast

It looks, and plays, like half life. Quite polished as Shakey Jake33 said - much better than I thought it would be. I remember reading an article comparing the pc and dc versions and talking about all the dc upgrades, they turned out quite nice. I still hate that they didn't release it after it was done... what a bunch of uptight moronic aholes
damn.gif


Nice game overall, a worthy dreamcast game for sure.

---Ammut
 

schi0249

Mid Boss
I thought it was suprisingly well done. Much better than the PS2 version. I have used both keyboard/mouse and controller, and both handeled well. I was very disappointed that it was never released.
 

Shitface

Established Member
Originally posted by schi0249@Jul 5, 2003 @ 01:40 PM

I thought it was suprisingly well done. Much better than the PS2 version. I have used both keyboard/mouse and controller, and both handeled well. I was very disappointed that it was never released.

Not trying to sound like i prefer ps2 or anything, but how is it much better than the ps2 version?
 
Originally posted by SegaSquad+Jul 6, 2003 @ 03:00 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(SegaSquad @ Jul 6, 2003 @ 03:00 AM)</div><div class='quotemain'> <!--QuoteBegin-schi0249@Jul 5, 2003 @ 01:40 PM

I thought it was suprisingly well done. Much better than the PS2 version. I have used both keyboard/mouse and controller, and both handeled well. I was very disappointed that it was never released.

Not trying to sound like i prefer ps2 or anything, but how is it much better than the ps2 version? [/b][/quote]

Believe it or not, the fps drops less.

The only time I saw major fps sacrifice was on flyovers.
 

Shitface

Established Member
Originally posted by Shakey Jake33+Jul 5, 2003 @ 05:55 PM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Shakey Jake33 @ Jul 5, 2003 @ 05:55 PM)</div><div class='quotemain'> <!--QuoteBegin-SegaSquad@Jul 6, 2003 @ 03:00 AM



Not trying to sound like i prefer ps2 or anything, but how is it much better than the ps2 version?

Believe it or not, the fps drops less.

The only time I saw major fps sacrifice was on flyovers. [/b][/quote]

Ah, alright, ya got me.
 
i find it pretty shocking to hear that it drops frames especially on the dc considering a quite minimal pc can run half-life like a dream, even with the high definition pack.

Wish I knew how to invert the mouse tho.

which way do you like to use the mouse? or rather which way does it function on the dc?

personally i prefer the direct -move mouse forward to look up-

i find it kinda weird when its got that -aircraft-like control method.
 

Shitface

Established Member
It's weird, with a mouse i prefer the non inverted settings, foward is look up, back is look down, etc..... But with a controller i much prefer inverted. But, on dc, strange as it may sound, it had slow down at the dumbest times in games. Like in Jet set radio, i could run through a crowd of people without slowdown, but when i ran next to one tree, slowdown city! This happened in like almost every game for me. Slow down when in the dumbest places.
 

Jaded God

Established Member
Umm I don't know which Half-Life on DC your playing but mine has always dropped frames and is "skippy" and "choppy"... I don't like giving my laser the work for it.
 
Originally posted by SegaSquad@Jul 6, 2003 @ 12:55 AM

It's weird, with a mouse i prefer the non inverted settings, foward is look up, back is look down, etc..... But with a controller i much prefer inverted. But, on dc, strange as it may sound, it had slow down at the dumbest times in games. Like in Jet set radio, i could run through a crowd of people without slowdown, but when i ran next to one tree, slowdown city! This happened in like almost every game for me. Slow down when in the dumbest places.

Dreamcast's chip is a PowerVR, so it maintains speed by rendering pretty damn near only what's visible.

This can get totally screwed if there are transparencies, so as long as everything is opaque everything can run fine, but a few transparent layers can destroy the poor thing's fill-rate.

Sorta like my Kyro II in Quake3 PC, the frame rate would stay at 60, but if 2-4 rockets were launched, there would be too many transparent smoke layers and it'd go down to 10-20.
 
Just adding...

From what I've seen, the major reason for the nonsens slowdowns in many DC games is not graphic-related. It's collision detection related.

The DC offers hardware collision and occlusion detection. It makes things easier for the developer, since you don't need to code it yourself, and in theory those routines are closer to the CPU and thus well optimized.

But without well-done scene optimization it's pretty easy to bring the DC CPU to it's knees, by having situations where it's forced to resolve a collision that leads to another collison, in polygon level.

As example, have a character go through a passage that is narrower than it's bounding volume. When checked against a wall, the resolved collision will push it against the other wall, producing a collision that must be resolved, and it'll be pushed back, and so on and on, overloading the system. This happens quite often in Ecco The Dolphin, as example.

The DC has made the developers lazier, since it makes things much easier. :)

Too bad Sega couldn't setup (and have $$$ to keep) a proper strategy for it. From a developer's standpoint, it brought several commodities never put together before on home consoles. The easy PC ports, the NAOMI board, the deferred rendering (you can do that on other systems, or on PCs, but you need to sort the polygons on your own, whereas the PVR2 did that on hardware), built-in collision and culling... it could even do stencil volumes.

It came and went so fast, and was so understimated it soars my heart. It's amazing how many people think that the DC has PSOne-level graphics, until you drag them and show some DC games running.

"Oh! I didn't know it was that powerfull"

--EDIT--

HL runs slow on both DC and PS2 because it's heavily unoptimized on both systems. It runs better on DC because the DC is more PC-port friendly than the PS2 (I bet it PS2 HL doesn't even touch the VU processors), but it still uses the WinCE libraries and might even rely on some DirectX variant layer to interface with the video hardware, thus loosing performance.

Geez, there is a HL.EXE file in the CD! And when you try to run it, a message popups:

Windows detected that this is a valid windows executable, but was compiled for a different proccessor than the current one.
 

antime

Extra Hard Mid Boss
Originally posted by M3d10n@Jul 8, 2003 @ 08:10 PM

From what I've seen, the major reason for the nonsens slowdowns in many DC games is not graphic-related. It's collision detection related.

The big reason for slowdowns on PVR-based products are scenes where the chip can't take advantage of its tile-rendering method to reduce the number of pixels drawn, particularly large out-door scenes and transparencies. One of the big points of the PowerVR architecture is that since it typically draws far lesser pixels than conventional Z-buffer based architectures, memory bandwidth can be reduced.

The DC offers hardware collision and occlusion detection.

The PowerVR architecture doesn't draw occluded pixels, but your collision detection claim is pure nonsense.

The easy PC ports, the NAOMI board, the deferred rendering (you can do that on other systems, or on PCs, but you need to sort the polygons on your own, whereas the PVR2 did that on hardware)

The Matrox m3D card I had in my old PC did all that quite well, as do the Kyro cards (which are based on same generation technology as the Dreamcast). And you probably meant modifier (or shadow) volumes. Stencil buffers are something different.

HL runs slow on both DC and PS2 because it's heavily unoptimized on both systems. It runs better on DC because the DC is more PC-port friendly than the PS2 (I bet it PS2 HL doesn't even touch the VU processors), but it still uses the WinCE libraries and might even rely on some DirectX variant layer to interface with the video hardware, thus loosing performance.

Some people claim that the version circulating now isn't the final version at all, and that there is a Katana version. Can't vouch for the validity of these claims, but the number of serious bugs people have reported (crashing, save corruption etc.) would suggest that it maybe isn't the "gold" version people claim it to be.

Geez, there is a HL.EXE file in the CD!

Nothing odd there, Windows CE uses the same executable format.
 
I know we're all trying to figure out the frame rate issue in the leaked version of HL here. And I'll tell you all why there are frame rate issue.. the leaked version is only an alpha test. The version that we all have isn't complete yet, simple as that.

From what I understand all the frame rate issues were ironed out in the final version, which oldergames auctioned off on ebay since they decided it wasn't worth publishing. And the final version did get a review in gamepro(they were the only magazine to review it), and it recieved a perfect score, and in the article there were no mention of any frame rate troubles.

Anyways, to summarize everything, you have a incomplete alpha test.
 
Originally posted by antime@Jul 8, 2003 @ 06:48 PM

The PowerVR architecture doesn't draw occluded pixels, but your collision detection claim is pure nonsense.

Nonsense? Are you understimating the crawl-inducing power of baddly performed collisioon checks? ;)

Many DC games have slowdowns, but in many cases it's pretty obvious that it isn't due to graphical overload, because there isn't any obvious abuse of the PVR rendering scheme.

Might not be the case with Half Life, but it is the case in many games.

Ah, and Sega quite boasted the "built in" collision detection on the DC (of course it might be libraries with intersection routines well optimized for the SH4 in the official SDK). I never meant the PVR doing collision tests. That's absurd. But before the PVR does anything, there is a basic culling done by the SH4 itself, using bouding volumes. In a few games you can see it in action, when models suddenly disappear after being partially occluded by another model, due to big bouding volumes.
 
Originally posted by Mr. Moustache@Jul 9, 2003 @ 04:12 AM

I know we're all trying to figure out the frame rate issue in the leaked version of HL here. And I'll tell you all why there are frame rate issue.. the leaked version is only an alpha test. The version that we all have isn't complete yet, simple as that.

From what I understand all the frame rate issues were ironed out in the final version, which oldergames auctioned off on ebay since they decided it wasn't worth publishing. And the final version did get a review in gamepro(they were the only magazine to review it), and it recieved a perfect score, and in the article there were no mention of any frame rate troubles.

Anyways, to summarize everything, you have a incomplete alpha test.

To be fair tho, your statement is nothing more than conjecture, logical as it may be.

For example, DC-UK recieved a review copy also, and *did* mention the serious framerate issues.

Ultimately we will never know if the oldergames version of Half-Life for Dreamcast was the same or a different version. Never know. Ever. No matter how many theories we come up with, they will be exactly that.

One theory is that the Oldergames rip is the same as the leaked one, and that was their reason for flipping out. Logically if there's was better, they'd have released it.

Another theory is that the leaked one *is* the oldergames one - isn't is convienient that scant weeks after oldergames claim to have a working copy, it gets leaked? Of course, this is another theory.

If I was oldergames, I'd have released it anyway. A leak is nothing more than a leak... commerical games get leaked all the time, they don't can... and lik-sang publish their SegaCD stuff. Makes more sense than flipping out, all they got from that was bad rep in the Dreamcast dev scene because they actively attacked many established developers like crt0.

But oldergames stuff aside, the DC one has all the levels. It looks too polished to be an alpha, or even a beta. We can be sure that if it wasn't gold, it was late in development. We don't even know if the leak is the same copy GamePro and DC-UK reviewed...
 
No, its well know that they finished the game, and just decided not to release it because of the promotional/distribution cost. they though so little of DC that they figured they couldnt even break even from it.
 
No, its well know that they finished the game, and just decided not to release it because of the promotional/distribution cost. they though so little of DC that they figured they couldnt even break even from it.

Correctly!

Game was done, ready for launch, but the interest in the DC was too low to make a DC only part to the success seller Half-Life!

The add-on "Blueshift" was supposed to be a DC exclusive (just like Decay is a PS2 exclusive)

But since the DC unfortunatly couldn't compete with other consoles in the area of interest (especialy not the PC)

It got boxed away.

Blueshift was released on PC.

PS2 Half-Life came, Decay stays on PS2 and so on...

The PS2 version of Half Life does indeed have more framerate drops than the final DC version (I haven't played the DC, only watched movies, and then tried to immitate the movement/activities in the movies, so I could compare)

And yes, the DC version is superior.

That has something to do with the PS2 beeing a dumb system for graphics and programming!

The DC is a masterpiece, a gold nugget!

+the bonus/hardware features the DC has makes it easier to cap down on the models/textures, and still don't loose much visual quality...

Lovely man, lovely!

(Note, I'm no "expert" on hardware, so I'm just using the basics I got)
 
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