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First Person Shooters (Games) Entertainment Games

Specs For id's Next Game After Doom 3 Calculated 62

jvm writes "Since my current PC is beefy enough to play Doom 3, I began planning for id Software's next game, the one that will come out _after_ Doom 3, so I've worked out the release date and minimum system requirements. It looks like a 3GHz processor and 1.5Gb of RAM just won't cut it in 2007, although the hard disk requirement doesn't hurt too much. Where's this information coming from? From id Software's past game requirements, a couple of exponential and linear models, and some pretty graphs. Start saving for that upgrade now! (Slashdot recently covered the Doom 3 system requirements.)"
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Specs For id's Next Game After Doom 3 Calculated

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  • Wow. (Score:1, Troll)

    by iMMersE ( 226214 )
    You Sir, have way too much time on your hands!
  • Upgrading every year is for the nerds^Wbirds.
  • by skermit ( 451840 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @11:50AM (#9802073) Homepage
    I paid over $3000 for a P-90w/64mb of ram back when it was the top of the line... now you can get a top of the line computer for roughly half that. The bleeding edge price of computer hardware has been dropping steadily, so by the time we need all that computing power, it'll cheap enough to own.
    • It's true that you can get a competant gaming PC for $1500, but it'd be a far cry from top-of-the-line.

      RAID, high-speed SATA drives, high-performance video cards, high-performance memory, a top-end CPU with a mainboard to match, with a quality case and the PSU that'll handle it all... you're looking more at a $2000+ price tag.

      Nevermind that you could easily rack up a couple thousand more going for a bleeding edge CPU and a display unit worthy of such a system. ...and that's self or custom-built. If you or
      • Do I really need all that for a gaming machine, though? I mean, are save-games so important that I really need RAID?

        Another thing to consider is inflation. I realize skermit's info is anecdotal, but let's use it as a demonstration. This site [] says the Pentium 90 appeared in 1994. The Inflation Calculator [] says that $3000 in 1994 dollars is $3645.04 in 2003 dollars (the most recent data available).

        Assuming you aren't just putting stuff in your PC because it's possible to do so, I'm pretty sure a top gaming P

        • "Do I really need all that for a gaming machine, though? I mean, are save-games so important that I really need RAID?"

          Games hit the harddrive for 3 reasons:
          1) Save-games (no big deal)
          2) Loading maps (sometimes a pain in the ass)
          3) Accessing the resources (it does it more if you have less ram).

          RAID would only come in handy if the game you're playing has really long load-times, or if you're hitting a cache-file a lot.

          For saved games, yeh, it's pretty useless.

          But as far as price goes, RAID is pretty cheap.
        • Do I really need all that for a gaming machine, though? I mean, are save-games so important that I really need RAID?
          I'm assuming the parent is refering to RAID-0 striping, which would buy you performance rather than redundancy. And seeing as iD recommends defragging before installing Doom 3 (because it has 2 GB of content, and hard disk speeds have not improved at the same rate as CPU and RAM speeds), a 4-way RAID-0 virtual disk using 10K RPM SATA drives would be damn useful. Think about it: 2 GB of game d
          • A single scene uses 80+ MB of textures. That's a LOT of reading.

            Not really. Modern mid-range 7200 rpm HDs have a peak sustained read of more than 30 MB/s - up to twice that speed actually, but that'd be the best case scenario. At that speed, it'd take all of 3 seconds to load the textures into memory. Loading times of 5 seconds would be more than acceptable to me...

            Now, I won't disagree with your point on graphics cards needing a lot of internal memory, that much is certainly true. Although Doom 3's max
            • Not really. Modern mid-range 7200 rpm HDs have a peak sustained read of more than 30 MB/s - up to twice that speed actually, but that'd be the best case scenario. At that speed, it'd take all of 3 seconds to load the textures into memory. Loading times of 5 seconds would be more than acceptable to me...

              Key words: peak sustained. That's assuming everything is nice and close together, and usually one large file rather than lots of little ones. In addition to texture data, there's also the geometry for the l
              • So defrag it and it should be close together, and possibly in one big file. That ought to give you something close to 30 MB/s, which like I said is really the lower bound for sustained read on modern HDs. That said, I'm sure Q3 takes more than 5 seconds to load a level, but I'm not so sure if installing a RAID would help there in any significant way.
                • When they say '80 MB per scene', they mean when you stop and look at a single frame render. A whole level will have hundreds of megs of textures to load- all while you are still trying to play the game at 60 FPS. Low-overhead or processing-offloaded storage controllers are a boon for this sort of situation- it's where SATA will shine.

                  The faster you can load the data, the less opportunity it has to slow down the rest of the I/O in the system.
          • VRAM? You probably don't need 256MB of dual-ported memory. It should be enough to have 32 or 64MB of that, and the rest be ordinary DDR for texture storage. It is not unusual for high-end graphics systems to have one type of ram for video memory, and another type for textures...
    • I just built a top of the line (but no where near near bleeding edge...) general purpose gaming/multimedia rig for about $4k with display (although that display is an apple 20" cinema :P). Athlon XP3200, 1GB Corsair XMSPro, DFI LANParty MoBo, AIW Radeon 9800, 74GB raptor and 2 250GB SATA drives, DVD ROM and DVD burner... You can build a decent rig for $1500, but bleeding edge will always be around $5k.
  • System Reqs (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Plake ( 568139 ) <> on Monday July 26, 2004 @11:51AM (#9802078) Homepage
    Well, for what it matters I've always found ID to make the best performing games for their minimum requirements. I had a 233mhz for running Quake 3 and that was even low for back when it was released, but it still ran and well I must say (30fps or so, with low res options).

    Just think what Half-Life (3?), or any other major FPS's requirements will be at the time.
    • Re:System Reqs (Score:4, Interesting)

      by kannibal_klown ( 531544 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @01:26PM (#9803225)
      Tell me about it.

      I had a PII 233 when Quake 3 came out. But I had a VOODOO 3 card in there. That game ran like silk on my machine.

      Meanwhile, my friends were bragging to me that their machines were faster (PII 300's with stock video cards). They nearly sh!t a brick when they saw it run on mine (their puny 8MB Rage cards sucked).

      However, you're only siting one example. Quake (the original) really needed a Pentium to play well. At that time, 486's were still more common than the Pentiums, and Quake crawled on them.

      DOOM 1 & 2 REQUIRED a 386 w/ 4MB Ram, but it ran pretty choppy. A 486 ran it like silk.

      In the end, I don't know.

      On one hand, we have previewers saying it runs well on low-end systems, and that the engine is very scalable.

      On the other hand, the "benchmarks" were running HIGH end rigs (obscene amount of RAM, very fast CPU's), and the benchmarks were good, but not great.

      I'm torn as to whether or not I should upgrade now. I have the funds put away for almost a whole new HIGH END system, but I don't know if it's worth it. While a high-end machine will handle DOOM3, can we say the same about the later games that will utilize the engine? They might not be as efficient with their maps and what-not, and you might need like a 4GHz rig to run them in all their glory.

      I want to get a "PCI Express" capable motherboard now, so I can upgrade it later if needed, but it's hard to find them in retail.

      I have a P4 2.4 w. 533 MHz FSB, 1GB Ram, and ATI 9800XT; I consider it a mid-range machine capable of handling mostly anything out there today. The closest system they had to mine in the "benchmarks" TROUNCED my specs, and yet 1024x768 at medium quality (with no AA or AF) ran at like 50FPS. That means mine will be lucky to get like 40FPS at low settings.
      • CORRECTION...

        I meant "PCI Express video cards are hard to find in retail."

        I already know which motherboard I'm getting, and from where. But I'm having a hard time finding the PCI Express video card I want (nVidia 6800 series).
    • I think that's an interesting point that many gamers on a budget forget - By turning of just a few of the detail options, you can often get very satisfactory performance running a state-of-the-art game on previous-generation hardware.
  • Nope. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by fr0dicus ( 641320 )
    What were the Xbox 2 specs supposed to be again? Seriously, how long can this sustain itself, can't we reach a level where we decide the hardware is good enough, and allow it to trickle down so enough people have it and it starts to become viable to make original games again?

    PC gaming died when GL code was added to Quake, it's a one-trick pony. Now consoles are eating its lunch (you can see it in the sales). Expect further fragmentation if Linux continues to make inroads. Is there a killer app on the horiz

    • Re:Nope. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Teancom ( 13486 ) <> on Monday July 26, 2004 @12:31PM (#9802486) Homepage
      Ridiculous power? Where I work, we are buying 3.4Ghz P4s with 4 Gigs of RAM for all of our engineers. Granted, I work at a memory manufacturer so the RAMs easy to come by, but we're only paying about $1K for the machines themselves. So I don't think its a stretch at *all* to say that in '07, a top-of-the-line machine from today will be the minimum reqs for a top-of-the-line game then. That's the "thing" about computers: today's overpowered monster is tomorrow's weakling.

      Oh, and the speed of the machine has jack-all to do with making original games or not. If you can make an original game for a 1Mhz C64, or an Apple II, or a 286, then you can make one for any desktop machine in use today.
    • PC gaming died when GL code was added to Quake, it's a one-trick pony.

      Ehh, I sort of agree, and sort of disagree. I didn't find Quake all that enjoyable. Technology-wise, it was neat, but I found "Duke Nukem 3d" way more enjoyable, and nicer to look at (even using a 3dFX card with Quake).

      I think developers are focusing too much on eye candy and less on gameplay, with few notable exceptions like "Thief 3." And yes, most PC games aren't THAT original anymore.

      A lot of console games are fun, but mos
    • Re:Nope. (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Have Blue ( 616 )
      Is there a killer app on the horizon that will come into its own when this kind of power becomes available

      There was for every other major leap forward in computer power (and every time someone declared the evolution of technology was over, not just in computers). What makes you think the future will be any different?
    • What fr0dicus is referring to, in my opinion, is the fact that gaming drives hardware improvements/upgrading, not applications. I could run Windows XP (gasp) on a laptop that was ways behind the times (300 some mhz processor). Could it run a game released in the past 2-3 years? Not a chance.
      • A bit of both really. Windows' requirements in the past have been of significant jumps that help to justify that purchase of a new gaming machine - that 300mhz processor laptop will still need to meet the minimum memory and hard drive requirements, which were a large leap over Windows 98 (probably what it shipped with), and even then it will be an unpleasant experience (I found XP an unpleasant experience on a K6-2-500). Clearly there is some complicity between Windows and its hardware manufacturers to cont
  • Graphics (Score:4, Interesting)

    by HoneyBunchesOfGoats ( 619017 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @12:42PM (#9802619)
    What about graphical requirements? That's a big piece of the picture that's missing from these calculations.
    • Re:Graphics (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Paladin128 ( 203968 )
      Not something that could be plotted easily, as:

      a) only in Quake II was 3D accelleration actually required
      b) a lot of the changes have to do with features rather than clock speed, memory, and fillrate.

      For instance, up until Doom3, no vertex or fragment shaders were required for the card. We don't know what tomorrow will bring in terms of on-chip components and language change. This would be like trying to plot OpenGL version requirements...
    • Re:Graphics (Score:4, Funny)

      by Frizzle Fry ( 149026 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @08:48PM (#9807424) Homepage
      A simple linear model reveals that a minimum requirement for id's next game after doom 3 will be graphics card with 5d-acceleration.
  • Convincing.. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mZam ( 789803 )
    But i think something that's being left out is the fact that all of these new releases are based on new engines each time.

    Each set of ID games listed.. (D1-3 Q1-3 etc.) Are all based on entirely new engines created for the respecive games (except for doom2).

    In recent interviews about the new ID game, they all said that their new game in the works would utilize an enhanced D3 engine, not an entirely new coded one (like RTCW uses an enhanced q3 engine). They also said that since they have the engine already
  • Finally... (Score:4, Funny)

    by hal2814 ( 725639 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @12:48PM (#9802684)
    ...I'll have something to run on my Longhorn system.
  • Seriously, those requirements aren't too bad. The hard drive space is nothing (comare it too UT2k4!), and these days having a gig of RAM is no stretch. And P4s are already churning at 3gigs. I do wonder what the video cards will be like in 07. You'll probably need a separate tower case just for it.

  • We first have to see what -really- makes Doom 3 run well.

    Also, a quick view through the article seems that the writer does not recognise the statements made by id that their next game most likely won't take as much development time as D3 took ,as they will only be using a modified D3 engine by that time : and also, they will re-use alot of assets currently in D3 (did a quick google, but can't seem to find that interview in which John Carmack said that).

    All and all, this looked like an article done by some

    • And in addition to this mythical next project from id Software, John Carmack has said that he has at least one more game engine in him.

      Although Doom3 is right around the corner, I can't wait to see their next project(s). The stuff id makes are always jam-packed with goodness :)
  • by dbirchall ( 191839 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @03:22PM (#9804611) Journal
    I don't really think Id is being unreasonable, since the specs are well below the Macintosh I bought last year.

    A 3.16GHz x86 is only a smidge (if that) faster than a 64-bit 2GHz PPC970. And I've got dual...

    1.6GB of RAM... well, I've only got 1.5GB right now - but I've got space for 8GB.

    3GB of disk... I think I've still got 50GB or so free on my main 250GB SATA drive... and then there's the second 250GB SATA drive...

    I wonder how many FPS I can get on it running at 1920x1200. :)
    • by Anonymous Coward
      probably not a lot since you'll have to run it in a virtual machine.
    • I don't really think Id is being unreasonable

      I don't really think ID is being anything at all. This is baseless extrapolation based on previous history. It's analagous to looking at Valve's release dates, and figuring out that HalfLife3 will be released in 2025. It RandomInternetGeek's comedic guestimation, not a company press release.

  • I mean really, it's shocking how well those log curves fit.

    Moore's law looks pretty well supported by these results, huh?

    I do feel that GPU memory/speed specs are missing, but I can see how they might be hard to quantify, as they often don't show up in game specs in the same manner.

  • His math is off (Score:3, Interesting)

    by inkless1 ( 1269 ) on Monday July 26, 2004 @04:29PM (#9805395) Homepage
    He isn't taking into account the correct variables.

    It depends utterly on what tech id uses.

    Doom -> Doom 2. Took 1 year apart. Why? Same engine.

    Doom2 -> Quake ... 2 years. Different engine.

    Quake 3 -> Doom 3 ... 5 years. Different engine.

    So if, as rumored, id Project X uses the same engine (or a mildly improved one), we'll probably see it 2005, 2006 at the latest.

    Not 2007
    • Yes, the next "id" game will actually not be from id. Raven Software is working on Quake IV with a tweaked Doom 3 engine, that should probably be out next year sometime. Raven has done a lot of great things with the id engines. I think Heretic and Hexen both used the doom/doom2 engine, and Heretic 2 used the quake or quake2 engine, and all those games looked much better than the id games with the same engines, i can't wait!
      • Let's just hope Raven remembers Linux support. A Quake game without Linux support would be a very bad move.

        Many Quake fans are Linux users, and they make up a considerable portion of the fanbase.
  • Given the current trend any game that id Software releases after July 2024, a mere 20 years from this very month, will require a processor which won't even exist in consumer hardware: the 1.4 terahertz processor. It is unclear at this time how id Software plans to cope with this looming crisis, but signs currently point to a voyage to other planets in search of a civilization with sufficiently advanced technology 1o1
  • The data is false since it lacks data on the greatest ever range of ID games: Commander Keen
  • While the specs for minimum requirements have always been aimed at the clueless games, it is a fact that games become playable once you have a system that performs atleast twice as well as the minimum requirement (and still with lowest quality settings).

    Looking for instance at the memory requirements for Quake (8MB). You have got to be kidding. Well, I guess it would run with that much memory and as some of you state, it Quake3 "ran smooth as silk" on a 233MHz system. don't know what kind of silk you guys

It is not for me to attempt to fathom the inscrutable workings of Providence. -- The Earl of Birkenhead