Forza 5's woeful lighting and how it backfired

Discussion in 'Forza Motorsport 5' started by TonyJZX, Mar 26, 2015.

  1. Ialyrn

    Ialyrn

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    Has nothing to do with time constraints, as Dan Greenawalt stated several times in the media that T10 had been working on FM5 for nearly 4 years; and along side the development of the X1 directly with Microsoft Xbox engineers.



    This is just one of those interviews he did, in almost everyone he stated how long they had been working on FM5. The only reason why FM5 has a lack of content as it is, is because they ditched everything they could to rebuild the game from scratch for the Xbox one. If they had of just done what PD did with GT5 and added in all the old content from the older console generation, then FM5 would have had a massive library of content.

    I have always said this since FM5 was announced, and I will say it here again. T10 was in a catch 22 situation, and they had only 3 choices available to them. Drop the content, keep the content, dont release a Forza Motorsport game until the X1 is at least 2 years in. Trust me, they wouldn't have had much extra content in there after just one year; just have to go by the available FM5 DLC content to see that. It takes a lot of time to build cars and tracks for a video game. As well as other features.

    As for the storefront, auction house and gifting, those 3 things where purportedly taken away do to end user misuse. Basically the passing around if glitched credits, stolen designs by using 3rd party tools, and hacked tunes that removed body panels and changed wheels to that of another car manufacture; as well as performance enhancing hacks.
     
  2. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    It's still by far the biggest racing game on current-gen. How is having 320 cars/17 tracks a prologue exactly? Should I remind you that Gran Turismo 5, 6 years in the making, launched with just 200 cars? Why not call that a Prologue?
     
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  3. Wolfe

    Wolfe Premium

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    There's absolutely no reason a device like the XBone can't handle dynamic lighting or weather at 1080p@60fps. The responsibility lies with Turn 10 to build a game that balances other things (polys, textures, etc.) with the demands of such features. If they made the game too "pretty" to implement those features, it's only their fault.
     
  4. Zelalem

    Zelalem

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    The head of the studio talked about time constraints in this interview.
     
  5. Ialyrn

    Ialyrn

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    Well if that is a legit interview, they have changed their story from most of 2013 and early 2014. Dan Greenawalt (who is also one of T10's studio heads) has said far to many times publicly, especially on video; that FM5 was not rushed and was worked on for around 4 years.

    http://www.vg247.com/2013/09/16/for...-just-a-graphics-showcase-insists-greenawalt/

    Also from Dan Greenawalt:

    http://www.shacknews.com/article/82...t-5-creative-director-defends-in-game-economy

     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2015
  6. Not_A_Guest

    Not_A_Guest

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    They did already have a Prologue with around one-third of the new cars in it. I suppose that they spent the rest of their development time doodling and adding the time/weather change.
     
  7. RacerPaul

    RacerPaul

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    Indeed. How much detail can the human eye detect anyway? My eyes aren't up to much so they can turn down the detail dial a bit as far as I'm concerened
     
  8. phillkillv2

    phillkillv2

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    I hate how discussions like this turn into **** slinging contests.

    To OP: There is nothing 'wrong' with the lighting of FM5. Like someone said before, the Xbox One has hardware that is capable of getting dynamic lighting. While I don't like criticizing developers much, there is zero excuse for FM6 to not have some kind of dynamic lighting or weather effects. Only now has Greenawalt and Turn 10 not beat around the bush when it comes to those features.

    Even then, it took Turn 10 a lot to answer the question "Does FM5 have night and weather?".

    I remember sitting in the live stream with the developers when the answered that... The viewer count dropped.

    I don't know, you can be disappointed with FM5, but don't be too hard on it, save that criticism for FM6 if they drop the ball.
     
  9. UkHardcore23

    UkHardcore23

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    If there is one thing i've learned since the start of the AAA generation is NEVER to believe what devs or their PR machines say!
     
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  10. SlyNine

    SlyNine

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    The term "Dynamic lighting" gets thrown around a lot. But it can mean different things. In some respects FM5 does have dynamic lighting. But it also has a lot of pre-baked lighting.

    ALL rasterized games have some degree of pre-baked lighting. All raster hacks (techniques for creating visual effects if you prefer) is a balance between speed and accuracy. The render cost of ray tracing is just to high (that and hardware isn't really designed for it). That's why we get cube maps instead of reflections, and we don't see other cars in the reflections (the hood of the car when in cockpit mode doesn't count, that simply flips the image that you see upside down). Rasterization has it's limits, but its speed advantages allow us to have the incredible real time graphics that we enjoy.

    I do think Forza 5 uses many of the same techniques as Forza 4 did. I noticed car shadows on static objects (tracks) but not on other cars. There are also many other subtle effects and even some flaws that persist. Developing new techniques tailored to the API/Hardware does take time and resources. To me it looks like they simply felt their resources were better utilized else where.

    Personally I think the lighting should be the place to start. Playing with Maya, Blender, even UT editor its more often the lighting that makes all the difference visually. Small changes in lighting make a massive difference to us ( isn't 30% of our brain dedicated to processing sight, which is just light) If your CGI bread looks like a brick its often because the lighting is interacting with the bread wrong (assuming you used a decent texture). I can't wait to see what they do with FM6, I'm hoping for some big changes in the lighting department.

    If its like anything else in life. There's some BS in the truth and some truth in the BS.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2015
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  11. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    Well, Driveclub uses screen space reflections, so other cars and even the car itself can be reflected onto itself. It's really amazing.
     
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  12. SlyNine

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    Sounds neat. Did a quick google on it and Unreal engine came up, the limitations were anything out of the view port wouldn't show a reflection, So I guess it would work great just as long as you weren't looking directly at the cars?

    Great, now I'm going to buy the game just to check that out...
     
  13. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    Some examples:
    [​IMG]
    The back of the knocked down traffic sign reflects the car and itself.
    [​IMG]
    Sideview mirror is reflected.
    [​IMG]
    Brake caliper reflects in the rim.
     
  14. SlyNine

    SlyNine

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    That's cool. I would like to see FM implement that. I wonder what the performance penalty for that technique is.
     
  15. UkHardcore23

    UkHardcore23

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    I'd imagine it's severe, DC was supposed to be 60fps but they couldnt manage it and thats with only having 12 cars on track.
     
  16. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    From 1.2 to 2 ms depending on scene complexity according to Assassin's Creed 4 dev.
     
  17. LeMansAid

    LeMansAid

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    The mirror itself is obviously a separate equation though, as it appears the car is invisible to it.
     
  18. SlyNine

    SlyNine

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    Perhaps they use cube mapping combined with this, with the mirror you'd be looking at things outside the view port quite often so maybe they stuck with a cube map for that.
     
  19. TonyJZX

    TonyJZX

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    I'm of the opinion that these are largely fripperies... ie. stuff that makes for good screenshots and bullet points but dont translate to the driving experience.

    Its different if its in Horizon 2, different market and expectations.

    Actually I dont care for weather and night, it not something I enjoy but I do think its symptomatic of Turn 10s "larger issues"... ie. why they never had it and why I think it still wont be there in Forza 6.

    Then you can watch Turn 10 twist is the wind trying to explain why its not there... just like why they spent so much time laser scanning tracks like Sunset Peninsula and Maple Valley (!!!) which end up being omitted...

    What Turn 10 say has some truth in it but its not the total truth...
     
  20. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    They originally wanted to have car parts visible in rear view mirrors (i.e. back seats and doors) but decided to have what other racing games have for gameplay reasons, so it doesn't obstruct the view. You can see it early gameplay videos from 2013.
     
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  21. SimTourist

    SimTourist

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    It's not hard to understand why certain things were omitted. You have limited time/money/people and you try to manage them for best quality. Laserscanning is very simple and takes a couple days of work to capture a circuit, building a track and car assets with high level of fidelity takes a lot of time, tracks on average take a year to make, cars - 6 months. Making night and weather is mainly an issue of performance, if they can't do it locked 60 fps they won't do it, simple as that. Other devs were willing to sacrifice stable framerate for night and weather, that's the only difference between T10 and everybody else.
     
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  22. Dopplegagger

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    I wish they were willing to sacrifice the blinding sun effect. Darn near every track is "God rays" and sun glare.

    I have no problems seeing, the effect isn't as bad as FM4 and Laguna Seca in any race car, but it does bother me on many of the tracks.
     
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  23. Chippy569

    Chippy569

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    As someone who works in games, let me clarify that you're both right, but in different ways. When Dan says "we started the game when FM4 released" that doesn't mean the entire engine and physics and lighting and sound teams burst into full production swing right off the bat generating final code and assets. No, what those first two years really are is concepting, market research, brainstorming, etc. Presumably T10 upper management would have known of a new xbox coming, so those early years' work would be feasibility studies on what they think T10 can produce, budgets, etc. So it's slightly disingenuous for him to say "production" started during FM4 ship window, but the earliest work truly does start about that far in advance for regular-scheduled titles.

    i'm not seeing exactly what the change of story in hartman's interview is that you're pointing at, but in the minds of the general public and their expectation of what "production" means (ie a bunch of people doing the work that makes a thing) then that's likely closer to the 2 year cycle he mentions.
     
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  24. Speedster911

    Speedster911

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    The middle pic with the red Viper (is it?) reminds me of a current gen Fujumi Kaido. Here's hoping a narrower more tarmac rally-like version gets released as DLC in FM6. :cheers:
     
  25. Lain

    Lain Premium

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    That Viper pic is pretty damn close to photorealistic... the main giveaways are the mirror and the road in the foreground being too clean and flat-looking.

    The other two shots, while fantastic-looking, aren't quite as photorealistic in the lighting department. Impressive reflections though. Here's hoping that GT7 utilizes screenspace reflections.

    I haven't seen much of Forza 5 in person, but what I have seen looked rather gorgeous. I'm not entirely sure what OP's complaining about... you'd rather take boring static lighting over pretty static lighting? I can understand complaints about excessive use of effects like godrays, but from what I've seen with F5, I don't feel that they're drastically overdoing any of those kinds of effects. They might be overdoing some just a touch, but that's typical for launch games to try and come out of the gate swinging with graphics that make people go "wow!". I'd be willing to bet that Forza 6 will be more modest in that department, and will look better in the long haul because of it.

    And obviously the ideal solution to this whole conundrum is dynamic lighting. And I'm sure we'll get there someday.
     
  26. IceMan PJN

    IceMan PJN

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    Like to update this FM6 prediction?
     
  27. Speedster911

    Speedster911

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    Developers coming up short on certain things after release are only a handful of issues they face in the industry. Out of all other devs striving to make a realistic driving game on a console, T10 has the least issues.

    Try to appreciate the product for what it is. It's maturing slowly, but maturing well. There are alternatives too you know.

    Switch to any of the outside views and it won't bother you as much.

    It is indeed though, I would have to agree Forza's engine makes everything look very CGI, perfect and uber-clean.. it doesn't have that real-world element like GT, for instance. Speaking of the Viper, is that really a FM5 shot? Cos' I don't recognize that track.. looks like a Fujumi work-in-progress for new gen! :dopey:

    Well, not sure how they're going to squeeze out dynamic lighting at a locked 60 fps, but it would be interesting to witness it in the making. :tup:
     
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  28. TJisA1337NOOB

    TJisA1337NOOB

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    Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe the shot you're referring to @Speedster911 is from Driveclub.
     
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  29. SlyNine

    SlyNine

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    Despite disagreeing with his prediction/assertion (I thought they wouldn't have rain for different reasons). I don't think you can or need to update a prediction and opinion that was clearly made in context to the information at that time.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2015
  30. Dopplegagger

    Dopplegagger

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    No. I don't sit on the hood or, strap myself to the bumper or, climb onto the wing or, hover 8'-0" above the ground and 6'-0" behind the vehicle when I am driving my real car. I also don't like using those views in a driving sim, no matter how arcade like it is. I feel better connection to the ingame car, when I am using the cockpit view.

    Changing the views does work for eliminating the glare issue in FM4, but the awe inspiring lighting on FM5 does not go away, or bother me to a lesser degree. Yet in both games, the hood and magic carpet views completely disconnect me from the car.

    I never liked following view cameras. Even in games dating back to Out Run, as fun as it was. So I don't use them, if they are optional.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2015