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C4 Game Engine


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#1 MARS_999   Members   -  Reputation: 1231

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Posted 16 May 2010 - 03:58 AM

Anyone here using the C4 game engine? If so does it use GLSL? How hard would it be to implement texture arrays for terrain rendering? Would you recommend it considering it costs $300 to use. Thanks

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#2 the enemy   Members   -  Reputation: 233

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 09:23 AM

I have used the C4 Game Engine since version 146.

It is not possible to use GLSL or Cg. You cannot create your own shaders, you must use the C4 Editor to create your shaders using a visual editor.

I have been waiting for C4 to hit 2.0 for longer than I can remember, and last I checked it still hadn't reached beta.

If you buy a license now, you might still be able to get free updates for life, although thats changing with the release of 2.0 to needing to buy yearly update license. There will also be a cheaper basic edition if you don't need source code.

You can check out the C4 demo to see if its worth getting. Although it sounds like the engine will get much better once 2.1 is released.

#3 MrDaaark   Members   -  Reputation: 3535

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 10:17 AM

My short experience with the C4 engine:

-Download the demos. Try to run them.

-I get a rolling screen like my vertical hold is out of whack.

-Post on the board, and get a shit load of knee jerk excuses as to why this engine can't even set a video mode properly, and had no way for me to change it.

That was years ago however.

#4 Windryder   Members   -  Reputation: 270

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 10:29 AM

Although I've heard good things about C4, I wasn't overly impressed when I tried the demos (quite recently I might add). Performance was pretty bad, and the visuals failed to make up for it. In particular I found the C4 engine's lighting to be a bit... strange? Maybe it was the rather crappy demo art, I don't know.

I've been browsing through the example code and tutorials on the C4 wiki, and judging from that the engine seems to be very well written. The C++ API is extremely clean.

While some parts of C4 certainly failed to impress it's definitely worth a look at least.

#5 MARS_999   Members   -  Reputation: 1231

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Posted 17 May 2010 - 01:00 PM

Quote:
Original post by the enemy
I have used the C4 Game Engine since version 146.

It is not possible to use GLSL or Cg. You cannot create your own shaders, you must use the C4 Editor to create your shaders using a visual editor.

I have been waiting for C4 to hit 2.0 for longer than I can remember, and last I checked it still hadn't reached beta.

If you buy a license now, you might still be able to get free updates for life, although thats changing with the release of 2.0 to needing to buy yearly update license. There will also be a cheaper basic edition if you don't need source code.

You can check out the C4 demo to see if its worth getting. Although it sounds like the engine will get much better once 2.1 is released.


2.0 is out in a few weeks per Eric. I am still on the fence if I should get it or not...

#6 donkey breath   Members   -  Reputation: 206

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Posted 18 May 2010 - 01:12 AM

Version 2.0 is out by end of May/beginning of June. This is a massive update including it's own implementation of physics. Last update included voxel terrain which is cool to work with but I've not really had any need for it.

The code is extremely clean and the forum is ususlly helpful. It is a programmer engine so don't expect the best looking demo's but look at the functionality it offers and the current features. The GUI is due to be redesigned soon which will be a big help. Worth investing now so you get the free upgrades for life, rather than missing out. I think this ends once version 2.0 has been released.

#7 PlayerX   Members   -  Reputation: 279

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 01:57 AM

Quote:
Original post by the enemy
If you buy a license now, you might still be able to get free updates for life, although thats changing with the release of 2.0 to needing to buy yearly update license. There will also be a cheaper basic edition if you don't need source code.

It's too late, the old offer has expired according to this post in their forums:

"The time between now and May 12 is also the last chance to purchase the Standard Edition and receive lifetime updates at no additional cost. Beginning on May 12, the Standard Edition, Academic Edition, and Basic Edition will include one year of free updates."

The new license also only entitles you to use it for one project unless you purchase either the Industrial or Professional license. These don't give prices so you probably can't afford them.

It's a pity that yet another engine has gone restrictive.


#8 ybijgu   Members   -  Reputation: 180

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 02:56 AM

Quote:
Original post by PlayerX
The new license also only entitles you to use it for one project unless you purchase either the Industrial or Professional license. These don't give prices so you probably can't afford them.


Section II.4 of the new standard license:
"The Licensee may create an unlimited number of Works using the C4 Engine."

However, you cannot make money money off of the new Basic Edition, so if you want to sell something you have to upgrade to the standard license for the difference in cost. You also cannot make more than $100 per copy of a product sold with the Standard License.

The voxel terrain actually uses texture arrays (if the hardware and drivers support it).

You do not have access to glsl or cg with C4. You make your own shaders through the shader editor, then C4 creates the shaders itself from that in the shader language most appropriate for the platform it's being run on.

2.0 is going to be released by the end of this month (there's going to be a very short beta period sometime before that for current licensees).

If you're worried about the visual quality of the demo please keep in mind that it is largely Eric's programmer art (In the 2.0 alpha it is definitely improved, and the 2.0 release has even more that current licensees haven't had access to yet). To get a better idea of what you can achieve look at the screenshots page AND the showcase section in the forums.


I'd recommend C4 if C++ is your preferred programming language. That's one reason why I picked it. The community is another (they are generally very helpful and professional). Probably the biggest reason I bought into it was Eric's 'resume'. Basically, if you look at what he has done you can see he is a professional in this field with a good reputation, and that gives me confidence that C4 will continue to have strong development in the future (and his inhouse voxel terrain solution, shader editor, and soon to be physics has proven me right on this).

[Edited by - zebeste on May 22, 2010 9:56:48 AM]

#9 PlayerX   Members   -  Reputation: 279

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 03:27 PM

Quote:
Original post by zebeste
Quote:
Original post by PlayerX
The new license also only entitles you to use it for one project unless you purchase either the Industrial or Professional license. These don't give prices so you probably can't afford them.


Section II.4 of the new standard license:
"The Licensee may create an unlimited number of Works using the C4 Engine."

Ah yes, you're quite correct. I mis-read the licencing comparison page. The Standard edition allows only one user, and I read that as it being restricted to one project. The Industrial/Professional licences give updates for the duration of a project which didn't help my misunderstanding.

Quote:
Original post by zebeste
If you're worried about the visual quality of the demo please keep in mind that it is largely Eric's programmer art

Actually I'm quite impressed with this latest demo, not having been swept away much by the previous ones. The new terrain and shadowing technology is very smooth and glitch-free. Some professional artists on that engine could do wonders.

Not sure about the stencil shadows though. :-)


#10 MARS_999   Members   -  Reputation: 1231

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 08:04 PM

The engine supports CSM tech.

#11 Eric Lengyel   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2158

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 09:23 PM

Quote:
Original post by Daaark
My short experience with the C4 engine:

-Download the demos. Try to run them.

-I get a rolling screen like my vertical hold is out of whack.

-Post on the board, and get a shit load of knee jerk excuses as to why this engine can't even set a video mode properly, and had no way for me to change it.

That was years ago however.


Under what name did you post on the C4 Engine forums? I'd like to look it up and see what responses you received. What graphics card were you using?

A "vertical hold out of whack" would indicate a driver problem, not a problem with the engine. Drivers from a particular vendor (that shall go unnamed) were especially bad "years ago". I think you would see much better results now.

#12 PlayerX   Members   -  Reputation: 279

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Posted 22 May 2010 - 11:05 PM

Quote:
Original post by MARS_999
The engine supports CSM tech.

Yep, I saw that in the demo. But if I'm not mistaken the dynamic objects were using stencil shadows.


#13 Eric Lengyel   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2158

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 10:29 AM

Quote:
Original post by PlayerX
Quote:
Original post by MARS_999
The engine supports CSM tech.

Yep, I saw that in the demo. But if I'm not mistaken the dynamic objects were using stencil shadows.


Dynamic objects can use either stencil shadows or shadow mapping. You can choose.

#14 AndyPandyV2   Members   -  Reputation: 298

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 11:10 AM

The old C4 demo worked correctly for me, but this new one seems to suffer from a few problems(at least on my i7/nv 260).

-everything besides the terrain is black(I suppose this might be intentional, programmer art?), the mobs, the graves, the trees, and the wall things are all black

-when i press escape in game it brings up a menu with unreadable font(had to guess which one was the quit button)


#15 MARS_999   Members   -  Reputation: 1231

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Posted 23 May 2010 - 11:20 AM

You have the latest drivers?

#16 Eric Lengyel   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 2158

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Posted 24 May 2010 - 09:26 PM

The black terrain problem (and messed up textures elsewhere) is all due to a bug in the GL_EXT_direct_state_access extension in one of the recent Nvidia drivers. Please update to the current driver, and this problem will go away. There is a link on our download page to the location where you can grab the latest drivers from Nvidia:

http://www.terathon.com/c4engine/downloadwin.php





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