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Quake First Person Shooters (Games)

Doom 3 Hardware Guide Debuts 392

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the time-to-upgrade dept.
Nosf3ratu writes "Over at HardOCP, the boys have teamed up with id software again to publish the Official Doom 3 Hardware Guide. As the guide states: 'With the prospect of so many new people being brought into gaming by DOOM 3, there will likely be a lot of questions regarding the computer hardware needed to support it.'"
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Doom 3 Hardware Guide Debuts

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  • by Nosf3ratu (702029) <{ten.labolgcbs} {ta} {utar3fsoN}> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:20PM (#9834440)
    Yes, they are.
    Todd Hollenshead, acting CEO of id said in an email shortly after the announcement of the release date, of OSX and Linux:

    "Mac and Linux: Unfortunately I don't have dates for either of these. However, Linux binaries will be
    available very soon after the PC game hits store shelves. There are no plans for boxed Linux games.
    More remains to be done for the OSX version of DOOM 3 and that will take some time. We won't release
    the OSX version until it's just as polished as the PC version. The date for OSX DOOM 3 remains "when it's
    done", but I can confirm that it's definitely coming. "
  • Re:SMP (Score:5, Informative)

    by micr0c0sm (801346) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:29PM (#9834587) Homepage
    It's confirmed that there is no SMP support. Most games do not have it. Check the [H]ardForums for more info.
  • by Nosf3ratu (702029) <{ten.labolgcbs} {ta} {utar3fsoN}> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:31PM (#9834612)
    I haven't seen any official announcements from id, but from Todd's email, I take it as that there will be one version of Doom 3 to buy (much like UT2K4) and the Linux binaries will be probably be available as free downloads on the internet, much as they did for RtCW and Quake3. The boxed versions of Quake3 were not id products; they were Loki products, iirc.
  • Re:Heh heh (Score:5, Informative)

    by moonbender (547943) <moonbenderNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:32PM (#9834630)
    From the article:
    There is no doubt that DOOM 3s minimum system specifications can easily deliver a good gaming experience. We found it simply incredible that a system this old could run DOOM 3 at all, much less run it well. It may be hard to believe, but we can honestly recommend spending $50 on DOOM 3 if you have a system comparable to this. You can still have a very worthy DOOM 3 experience with it.


    I know some of you are thinking that it would be tough to call gaming at 640x480 a good gaming experience, but the environments in DOOM 3 are very forgiving in terms of resolution as discussed in our IQ section. Do we suggest you use a higher resolution to place yourself in an even more immersive environment? Without a doubt, but it is hardly a requirement to really feel a part of the DOOM 3 story.
    And in the conlusion:
    All that aside, I'm still astonished by our experience on the min spec system. While we think you'll likely have the best experience at the resolution and quality levels we suggested, dont think for a second that those are the actual requirements for playing DOOM 3. If I had a 1.5GHz Pentium and GeForce 4MX system that was two years old, I would still purchase this game knowing I was in for an incredible experience.
    So yeah, I think this article is fairly balanced. They don't pretend you need the absolute latest and greatest to play the game. I don't think it's very insightful, really - their conclusion seems to be "well it runs best on really fast systems, but we guess you can also run it on older systems in 800x600" which isn't exactly a surprising outcome. OTOH I guess they do test Doom 3 on a large range of systems which will give you a fairly good idea at what res and quality settings your own systems will be able to run it, so the article does have its uses.
  • Re:Autospooge (Score:5, Informative)

    by th1ckasabr1ck (752151) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:34PM (#9834660)
    Go pick up the latest PCGamer and read the review. Or go check out PlanetDoom [planetdoom.com] and read the reviews in the forum section. All signs point to it being an amazing game that completely lives up to the hype.
  • Re:New Hardware (Score:2, Informative)

    by stonedonkey (416096) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:35PM (#9834676)
    With Doom3 and HL2 comming out very soon, I am interested to see how this will affect sales in new CPU's and video cards. Will there be a great boost in sales so people can play these games? I for one have just bought a new computer to allow me to play these--although it is a laptop, and I need to get a faster HD for it.. heh

    It's been horrendous with video cards, especially the 6800GT OC, which is regarded as Doom 3's "sweet spot" for price-performance ratio. I lucked out, apparently, buying that card right after reading [H]'s review of it. I got one of the last few in stock at chumbo.com (a place I'd never heard of, despite my extensive online hardware shopping).

    Now, I got the card for $399.99 and free shipping. Good luck finding it anywhere now, at any price. Even those who ran out of stock have pegged the card at at least $420, with $459 being the new baseline. Sales tax and/or shipping can and will push the total up to $500. I saw one place selling the BFG OC for $525. Best Buy, Chumbo and EVGA appear to be the only places on the Internet that still have the GT variant at $400. The 6800 Ultra is only slightly less impossible to get and is that much more expensive, with the Radeon X800 Pro trailing closely behind that.

    It's ugly.

  • by Nosf3ratu (702029) <{ten.labolgcbs} {ta} {utar3fsoN}> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:37PM (#9834723)
    Here's the long and short answer:

    ATI 3d support is spotty at best. Nvidia support is excellent. Their cards perform just as good (if not better, in some cases) in Linux as they do in Windows. I have been gaming with Linux and Nvidia exclusively for about three years (including all the recent titles, such as RtCW, Q3, UT2K3, UT2K4, and ET) and it performs very well. Pair up a big nVidia with a 64bit Athlon, and you've got an excellent gaming rig.

    So, the answer: The optimal hardware is the same, no matter what the operating system (although you would require less RAM on Linux, for example, if you use a slim window manager, as compared to XP, etc, etc, ymmv, and all that rot.)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:48PM (#9834884)
    Try Computer Exchange (CEX) on Tottenham Court Road in London. They always have old copies of Windowses lying around, or they did when I lived in Britain.
  • by spellraiser (764337) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:52PM (#9834921) Journal
    Strange that this hasn't been posted already ... well, here it is:

    DX 9.0 compatible 3D card w/ 64MB RAM*
    MS Windows 2000/XP
    Pentium 4 1.5 GHz or Athlon XP 1500+
    384 MB RAM
    8x CD-ROM
    2.2 GB of HD space
    Broadband (for multiplayer)

    *Supported 3D Graphics chipsets:
    ATI: Radeon 8500, 9000, 9200, 9500, 9600, 9700, 9800
    NVIDIA: GeForce 3, GeForce 4MX, GeForce 4 Titanium, GeForce FX, GeForce 6

  • Re:Sweeeeeet. (Score:2, Informative)

    by multriha (206019) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @02:59PM (#9835020)
    Don't know about Unreal, but starcraft can't be run at a non-native resolution. It runs at 640x480 I believe always. Powerbooks at just smart enough to scale it properly to fit the screen.
  • Re:Sweeeeeet. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Usquebaugh (230216) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:02PM (#9835078)
    FYI,

    native resolution, as discussed here, is the LCDs native resolution not the games.

    LCD have an optimal resolution, running at a lower res than this causes a degredation of the image.
  • Answers (Score:3, Informative)

    by rd_syringe (793064) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:03PM (#9835111) Journal
    An unoriginal plot

    Doom started that plot years before Half-Life.

    An unoriginal genre

    Doom started that genre years before Quake.

    Did id even bother hiring writers?

    Yes, they did.

    High hardware requirements

    The HardOCP article makes it a point to state that the minimum spec machine ran the game great.

    Nice troll.
  • Re:Systems (Score:3, Informative)

    by DeltaSigma (583342) <onu@public.gmail@com> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:39PM (#9835624) Journal
    From this shot [hardocp.com], I would have to say, ATI looks nicer for quality of lighting. The blending seems more natural.


    I couldn't find any real discernable difference between the ATI and nVidia side-by-side images, but I thought there must be at some microscopic level.

    So when you pointed this one out I decided to test it.

    I pulled the image into photoshop and copied the nVidia screen ontop of the ATI screen. I got them as best aligned as I could and then changed the nVidia layer's blending to "Difference." The thing is completely black (except for the gun, which occupies a different position and the text which was placed arbitrarily). Essentially this means there is almost no discernable difference in rendering quality.

    What might make one look better than the other is probably a combination of a couple factors. 1: We're looking at a very hazy image. There's apparantly an additive transparent plane being cast from the light or gun or something. In the interest of making things look organic, the texture/shader on this haze probably moves or morphs in some manner, just to keep it from looking too static. 2: jpeg compression, combined with the minor differences between the two images has likely enhanced certain colors/shades to varying degrees.

    Give it a try yourself though. I think you'll agree that there's very little difference between the rendering quality of these split screenshots.

    Which isn't much of a surprise considering John Carmack's doing the programming.
  • by DeltaSigma (583342) <onu@public.gmail@com> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:43PM (#9835692) Journal
    They refer to DirectX 9.0 cards because that's what most people recognize. It IS an OpenGL card, and it will use OpenGL rendering paths. However the OpenGL enhancements present on a DirectX 9 card are better than the OpenGL enhancements on a DirectX 8 card... ...it's all a name game pretty much.
  • Re:Sweeeeeet. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Minna Kirai (624281) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:46PM (#9835739)
    I routinely play Starcraft and Unreal Tournament 2004 on my Powerbook G4 at non-native resolutions and they look fine to me

    If your laptop is a multiple of 640x480, like 1280x960, then the described blurriness wouldn't actually occur for you.

    The effect is worst when you run a program a a resolution close to, but not identitical to, the fixed rez of the LCD. That produces some fairly painful scaling artifacts.
  • by Jeremy Erwin (2054) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @04:13PM (#9836096) Journal
    Previous reviews and previews have implied that the brand of sound card doesn't much matter (at least for quake iii), but it should be capable of driving 6 speakers.
  • by molarmass192 (608071) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @04:28PM (#9836291) Homepage Journal
    Agreed, nVIDIA drivers for Linux are solid. If anyone wants to really squeeze all the possible juice out of their machine for gaming:

    1) Switch to runlevel 1:
    -> init 1
    2) Disable swapping:
    -> echo 0 > /proc/sys/vm/swappiness
    3) Start sound manually:
    -> /etc/init.d/alsasound start
    4) Start networking manually:
    -> /etc/init.d/network start
    5) Start X without a window manager:
    -> startx xterm
    6) Launch Doom from the xterm prompt
    -> /games/doom3/doom3.sh???

    You might be able to take it a step further and try passing the doom startup script to startx but this doesn't work with all games. That said, here's hoping the Linux binaries are available VERY soon after next Tuesday since I'll have the game in hand that Thursday. I've got a GF3 Ti420 so I might be scrambling for a vid card this weekend, but I'm gonna try it first.
  • Re:Sweeeeeet. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Naikrovek (667) <jjohnson@[ ].com ['psg' in gap]> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @05:18PM (#9836991)
    just don't stretch it to full screen. 1280x1024 stretched on a 1600x1200 lcd looks shitty, but 1280x1024 unstretched on a 1600x1200 lcd looks fine.
  • Re:Sweeeeeet. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Rob Simpson (533360) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @05:49PM (#9837353)
    Or run it at half-resolution, ie: 800x600. That way, each dot on the screen is a square of 4 pixels, rather than some blurry approximation.
  • by ryanvm (247662) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @05:52PM (#9837392)
    Considering that to even run Doom 3 you'll have to had purchased a computer within the last two years why would you expect them to support a 6 year old OS?
  • Re:Dither? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Viking Coder (102287) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @06:09PM (#9837595)
    No way. All of the differences you point out are completely masked by the JPG differences. (Those "cubes" you refered to are DCT 8x8 boundary artifacts.)

    I look at computer-generated image quality differences all day long at my job, and comparing these two images, there basically aren't any. I've additionally used a JPG Artifact removal tool on the two images, and then done the image differencing trick, and you have to turn gamma up by about 1.5 before you see *any* differences, and I believe all of those are positional differences. Turning the gamma up by about 2.5 is even more revealing: the differences between the images are hugely dominated by JPG differences.

    Look again.

    We'd both need better source images to make any strong claims about one card being better or worse than the other. From where I'm sitting, they're nearly identical.
  • Uh... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Cyno01 (573917) <Cyno01@hotmail.com> on Thursday July 29, 2004 @10:23PM (#9839746) Homepage
    The new Apple Displays have a 16ms refresh rate. Thats plenty good for gaming. I think there are only a few samsung displays that are quicker than that at 12ms... I bought a 20" yesterday. :D

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