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newtechnology

Why did COD: AW move every file into the same folder where .exe is?

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I've pretty much played every COD (COD4, MW2, MW3, BO1, BO2 and now AW) and they organize every file into their respective folder. For example, In all previous CODs, they put all *.bik in 'Videos' folder and maps and other stuff in Main/zone/English or whatever. But in Advanced Warfare, they moved everything outside and kept it unorganized. So, unlike other CODs, there is no 'Main' or 'Videos' folder. Everything is now in same folder where executable is. What is the reason behind this? For easy programming or for faster file loading? (Maybe because this game is sized 53.5 GB?)

 

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This is Steam, do they even have an ability to control that?

Besides, why do you care? It works and that's enough.

Steam is nothing special as a developer you have the control over where files are located in your own directory structure.

 

It looks like COD went with an archive format for their files now which allows for better compression on the archived files. This will in turn have a faster load from the disc with perhaps a trade of in the decompression step of those files in the archive. The massive FF files seem to be the archive files. And it seems like they made a single archive per location which means you dont have to jump through the directory structure to load the files for a level. This is offcourse all speculation on my part :)

Edited by NightCreature83

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This is Steam, do they even have an ability to control that?

Besides, why do you care? It works and that's enough.

Steam is nothing special as a developer you have the control over where files are located in your own directory structure.

 

It looks like COD went with an archive format for their files now which allows for better compression on the archived files. This will in turn have a faster load from the disc with perhaps a trade of in the decompression step of those files in the archive. The massive FF files seem to be the archive files. And it seems like they made a single archive per location which means you dont have to jump through the directory structure to load the files for a level. This is offcourse all speculation on my part smile.png

 

They had FF files before but they were in Main/English/Zone folder. Now they're all in same folder as where .exe is located. I just need to know if keeping every asset file in same folder where executable is located has any advantage or not :P

Edited by newtechnology

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I do have an issue with directories sometimes, it's "\\" or "\" or "/"  ......  agghhh

 

You can end up in a situation where the PC build works perfectly, but the PS4 build crashes violently simply because someone types "sound\english\audiobank.dat" instead of "sound/english/audiobank.dat"

 

Or a PC build crashes because they forgot to put @ in front of a path, or many other combinations of the above.

 

But  dumping everything in a single directory to get rid of this issue seems a bit like using a 13 pound sledgehammer to crack a nut.

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It's probably in no way shape or form an advantage. Unless they were trying to avoid writing relative paths. I'm surprised that they published the game like that. But... if it doesn't do havock with the game's loading time... It probably don't matter.

 

In my imagination... in the development process, the programs were confusing \ and /. And years of doing that, and causing builds to fail just eventually pissed off the heads. So the heads were like...

"YOU KNOW WHAT!? F*** IT! WHY NOT JUST THROW ALL THESE FREAKIN FILES INTO THE SAME GOD DANG FOLDER!"

 

Though... it was probably spoken of in sarcasm. Given CoDs direction... they probably don't understand sarcasm anymore, and took it as an actual design recommendation.

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I don't imagine its any sort of advantage. Its certainly not a performance advantage. Don't take it as something you should do. Or shouldn't do, for that matter. Its entirely incidental.

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I do have an issue with directories sometimes, it's "\\" or "\" or "/"  ......  agghhh

 
Just FYI, Windows has allowed forward slashes "/" as directory delimiters for a long time.

Since DOS 1.0.

As for paths in games... Why would you ever take a path from a designer and not normalize it. If it's a programmer doing it, then you should have better path creation tools and/or normalize them.

Frankly, if you're hard coding paths into your runtime... You're going to have other issues than just platform porting.

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This is Steam, do they even have an ability to control that?

Besides, why do you care? It works and that's enough.

Steam is nothing special as a developer you have the control over where files are located in your own directory structure.

 

It looks like COD went with an archive format for their files now which allows for better compression on the archived files. This will in turn have a faster load from the disc with perhaps a trade of in the decompression step of those files in the archive. The massive FF files seem to be the archive files. And it seems like they made a single archive per location which means you dont have to jump through the directory structure to load the files for a level. This is offcourse all speculation on my part smile.png

 

Makes complete sense for a runtime scenario. I would agree with this explanation. Assuming they also have a different structure for their development side. They probably didn't put very much thought into a user friendly file structure simply cause they didn't have to and just focused on performance. 

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I can imagine it's just how they have the build process set up. As they are developing it the structure is set up in a way that makes it easy to develop and it goes through a shipping build process and they probably just didn't take the time to write the scripts organize everything when it's built.

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Just thought of another possible cause.

 

On later versions of visual studio, in the solution explorer you have "filters" instead of directories.

 

In earlier versions you would create a new folder, then add items to it nad it would end up in a new folder on the hard drive.

 

In the newer versions, filters are not directories. I have had a lot of cases where I have added a bunch of stuff in what I thought was a directory only to realise it's only a filter and all the files are actually in the applications root directory.

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This might have to do something with development version data files, when a programmer does a change to some dll and exe, plus some data files, and testers, or someone else needing current version, did not want to recopy redundant files, what is what they might have to do if they were asked by windows to replace a folder, and the operation of "replace file" is already marked and commited for always "perform". But for that one  would rather make a smarter application, so I am still surprised with this.

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