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paulecoyote

[4E4] Need to know Judges hardware details...

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Hi all, I know there are a set of specficiations that our entries should work on, but in developing an audio framework for my entry I've come across problems with OpenAL and Realtek sound chipsets, particularly the ALC650 which is found on motherboards with built-in sound, amongst other places. So if possible could judges post their exact setups? Or at least for me anyway, if they use realtek based sound boards or not? I do have a fall back position I can use (using the "Generic Software" rather then "Generic Hardware" OpenAL device, which is unstable), but I would like to know how much of a priority this has to be, as this means adding more configuration and stuff - and I'm already behind as it is because I've been sidetracked doing this audio stuff... debugging and it turning out to be hardware+driver issues (sigh).

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Arg. We're using OpenAL too. If this were a console development contest then that would be in the hands of the console manufacturer, but we're not.

I'm interested to know about this too. Or any remedies that anyone knows of.

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I wouldn't mind hearing hardware details, particularly graphics stuff. We've gotten a lot of conflicting information about graphics cards, such as geforce-2s being used yet PS1.1 being assumed. As someone who wants to blow the judges' minds with graphics that are incredible even on the lowest-end graphics card, I really need to find out what that lowest-end card is. Whatever judge is sitting on a six year old RIVA TNT, I'm talking to you. Help me blow your mind.

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Yea actually this would be good to know for cpu's too. We were wondering what instruction sets we should assume are available. Such as SSE, SSE2 and whatnot. While our game can run fine optimized for an old pentium with mmx, it performs much much better if optimized for more advanced instruction sets.

O yea, and we're using openAL as well.

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Hate to jump in here, but I think this sort of ruins the whole idea of the contest. The idea was to make a game to run on a variety of machines, from a certain class, not to be tailored to the judge's machines. Heck, I'd compile a different binary for each judge, if I could, but this is supposed to be a complete "game", not just a contest for points.

On the other hand, a certain specific conflics with a very specific sound card is quite different. I think the best solution to this would simply be turning off sound with that card, and displaying a message it isn't supported (if you really can't get it to work). If it's important enough, I'm sure a judge with that chipset would be able to find another machine to run it on, just to test the sound.

just my 2 cents.

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Quote:
Original post by sirob
Hate to jump in here, but I think this sort of ruins the whole idea of the contest. The idea was to make a game to run on a variety of machines, from a certain class, not to be tailored to the judge's machines. Heck, I'd compile a different binary for each judge, if I could, but this is supposed to be a complete "game", not just a contest for points.

The problem is, many of the minimum system requirements are almost laughably low. A GeForce 2? A 10GB hard drive? The bar is being set considerably lower than what most modern AAA titles require. I'm not trying to target the judges' machines only; to the contrary, I want my game to run on, and take advantage of, as powerful a system as someone wants to throw at it, whether they're a judge or not. (Believe me... I wouldn't spend this much time on a game if I was only doing it for the contest.) But in order to maintain consistency and avoid having to spend five months testing ten different codepaths, if I need to support extremely low-end cards then I am going to end up throwing out some gameplay functionality, and I am going to need to prioritize support for low-end cards over implementing other featuers.

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Sorry, you're not getting exact specs out of us. You'll just have to decide whether it's worth the risk... try getting some figures on how widespread those chipsets are, what the chances are that the judges will fall into that percentage of the market, etc etc. Consider us as that sector of the market that is willing to buy your game but not willing to go trawling for patches if it doesn't work. [smile]

I thought the graphics issue had been resolved. The contest page is out of date; the GF3, with it's PS1.1 support, is the min spec (excluding the GF4MX, natch). You can aim for a RIVA TNT if you really want... but you don't have to.

As far as CPU goes, you're right, we haven't specified which generation CPU we're talking about. I don't think you can assume SSE support on all machines, but if you support it, it'll get used on some of them. We'll try and nail down an exact answer for you soon.

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Quote:
Original post by superpig
the GF3, with it's PS1.1 support, is the min spec (excluding the GF4MX, natch).

Oh, alright, then. I can kick plenty of ass on a GF3. Thanks. [grin]

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Quote:
Original post by superpig
Sorry, you're not getting exact specs out of us. You'll just have to decide whether it's worth the risk... try getting some figures on how widespread those chipsets are, what the chances are that the judges will fall into that percentage of the market, etc etc. Consider us as that sector of the market that is willing to buy your game but not willing to go trawling for patches if it doesn't work. [smile]

I thought the graphics issue had been resolved. The contest page is out of date; the GF3, with it's PS1.1 support, is the min spec (excluding the GF4MX, natch). You can aim for a RIVA TNT if you really want... but you don't have to.

As far as CPU goes, you're right, we haven't specified which generation CPU we're talking about. I don't think you can assume SSE support on all machines, but if you support it, it'll get used on some of them. We'll try and nail down an exact answer for you soon.


ah bollocks. Well I figured YOU would probably say something like that [wink]

I don't think I have an easy way of detecting what chipset is actually being used, so I'll have to do a ye'olde "can you hear this sound being played?" thing on configuration or first play. If at this rate I actually have a game to play! [lol]

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Quote:
Original post by Sneftel
The problem is, many of the minimum system requirements are almost laughably low. A GeForce 2? A 10GB hard drive? The bar is being set considerably lower than what most modern AAA titles require.
It's a game competition,not a graphics competition. Those specs give a huge amount of power for anything except graphics (including managing huge amounts of data and very complex AI). And when was it specified that you had to make an AAA title? Just take the 'low' specs as one of the features of the contest and make your entry accordingly...

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