John Carmack may be the face of id Software, but he’s definitely not the only person working on Rage or the next Doom. We spoke with Robert Duffy, id’s Programming Director, and Matt Hooper, Rage’s Lead Designer, about their upcoming shooter. The conversation delves into topics ranging from art design to multiplayer modes, and touches on the challenges of developing on both console and PC hardware. Here’s a snippet:
MaxPC: With the combination of driving and fps gameplay, what’s fun and exciting that we should look forward to that we haven’t seen before in games? Matt Hooper: The thing you haven’t seen is really the mix. We’re still id software and we’re still making this intense, action shooter game. Those moment to moment, finely crafted action sequences – running around with the coolest weapons and shooting guys – that’s still there. We invented that and we’re still going to do that really well. Just around the office everyone likes a lot of cool games. What we did was pull in these different elements that don’t detract from the action but add this little bit of flavor, and the vehicles are a part of that. The vehicles are almost an extension of your FPS avatar – you’re “running” around with a vehicle. It has armor on it, it carries a cool weapon, you fire that weapon, and the other car blows up in a cool satisfying explosion. It’s not as far removed as you would probably initially think. It all feels really good together.
It’s the worst kept secret in the industry: Intel’s next-generation Penryn killer, codenamed Nehalem is just around the corner. We’ve been seeing leaked benchmarks based on early silicon for months, and Nehalem’s Wikipedia page is already packed with unconfirmed specifications. All indications – and this is with more optimizations to come, mind you – is that Nehalem may be a bad mother worthy of having Isaac Hayes pound out a theme song for it.
OK, we get it. It’s going to be fast, but just how difficult is it to build a Nehalem rig? What are the catches? Will the new motherboard and socket require some silly new BTX form factor? To find out, we convinced one of our hardware contacts (who’ll remain unnamed) to let us into its lab so we could finally get our hands on the new chip. There, we were provided with the desktop version of Nehalem – called Bloomfield – and an Intel D58XSO “Smackover” board.
Read on to see how we built the Nehalem rig, and what surprises we encountered along the way!
We met with Lenovo this afternoon to talk about some of their upcoming products (to be revealed in the coming weeks and months), and they brought along a pre-production sample of their recently announced IdeaPad S10 netbook. We couldn’t help but resist getting some hands-on time with this tiny portable, including snapping up a dozen photos for you to enjoy. The S10 we saw was a red 9” version that will ship in international markets, while the US edition will offer a 10.2” glossy screen and come in 3 color options (red, white, or black). All variations of the S10 will run Intel’s 1.6GHz Atom processor (45nm, 533MHz FSB, 512k L2 Cache), though the best thing about the IdeaPad has to be its $399 price point.
Click through for all the high-res shots and more detailed specs.
We interviewed John Carmack back during this year's E3 when id first announced a partnership with EA to publish their next shooter, Rage. We had a chance to sit with Carmack again at this past weekend's Quakecon, where we followed up on our earlier discussion to squeeze more details out of the legendary game developer. Carmack dished out more details about their plans for Quake Live (including their high expenctations), the technology powering Rage and the next Doom, their cancelled Darkness project, and his thoughts about the current modding community.
Take a seat, grab a Mountain Dew, and click through for the full interview. You'll even find out which aspects of id Tech 5 may not be as powerful as id Tech 4!
QuakeCon keynote liveblog is starting now! We're watching a video, and Todd Hollenshead is getting everyone all cranked up about the Corvette that Ventrilo is giving away.The real news starts momentarily. Click through the jump, and make sure you're logged in to get live as we post updates.
We’ve been calling Intel’s next-generation CPU family code-named Nehalem a Penryn-killer because, sadly, AMD’s best and brightest have hardly been that. For those who haven’t sifted the sands of the Internet, and picked the brains of OEM’s and hardware vendors for every detail of Intel’s next-gen microarchitecture, here’s your quick primer on Nehalem that’ll make you big man on campus at the next geekfest.
How Many Cores?
Most Nehalem’s will be native quad-core with all four compute cores on the same physical die. Intel says that the design of Nehalem will also let the company build an eight-core version, codenamed Beckton, for servers. Intel also hasn’t ruled out the possibility of a multi-chip version so could perhaps see a double-die Beckton with 16 cores as well.
An improved version of HyperThreading will find its way into the core of Nehalem. This improved simultaneous multi-threading, or SMT, will let the OS see a quad-core chip as eight cores. Although some still debate its merit, the implementation of HT in the Pentium 4 generally added 15 percent more performance in multi-threaded applications.
Last week, we showed you which parts you would want to buy to construct a killer $2500 PC. The purpose of that machine was power computing – serious audio/video editing and high-bitrate media transcoding. We got a lot of flak about a few of our choices (most noticeably the CPU), but we stand by our picks. That PC configuration was meant for Power Users, and not hardcore gamers (though we recognize that those aren’t mutually-exclusive groups). For someone who primarily uses their PC for gaming, and won’t accept framerate dips in 120Hz games, we have different recommendations. The following components make up our ideal $2500 hardcore gaming rig (prices as listed on Newegg). If it’s not what you’d buy, we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section!
Here’s something I noticed today while snapping up photos hundreds of cosplayers: they each have a unique pose prepared when other attendees or photojournalists ask to take their picture. It’s actually quite entertaining to watch, really. A dressed-up costumer will just be walking by, casually chatting away with their friends, and then they’ll suddenly execute a unique pose and mug for the camera if they anticipate a shutter click. I’d like to imagine that these cosplayers practice modeling their poses in front of a mirror before stepping foot in public.
But on to the kick-ass sights I saw today. Warner Brothers held a large panel to promote the upcoming Watchmen movie; director Zack Snyder brought the entire starring cast to answer questions from fans and show off never-before-seen footage. The cast really looked and sounded like they loved the material and immersed themselves into their roles. Confirmed: Patrick Wilson’s Nite Owl will indeed be balding, fat, and impotent when he’s out of costume. Matthew Goode, who plays Ozymandias, also pointed out that he played the character with the idea that Veidt was the son of Nazis.
Click the jump to see more awesome costumes, and to find out who I bumped into on the show floor today.
When was the last time you updated your bookmarks? We're betting it's been awhile, and if you've been truly neglectful, you'll probably find several broken links as you scroll through your favorites. Like your underwear, it doesn't hurt to change things up every now and again, if for nothing else than to keep things interesting. Your personal hygiene may not be at stake, but your pride as a power user is.
With that in mind, we've scoured the web to bring you seven unique bookmarks that run the gamut from useful to wacky, along with a couple of old favorites that never go stale. Change your skivvies if it's been a few days since you last did, then hit the jump to breathe new life into your daily online routine.
Who knew geeking out could be so tiring. The first full day of Comic-Con is over, and our legs are already worn out. But before we collapse in fatigue, we wanted to share with your some more awesome sights from the show floor. We spotted hundreds of cosplayers (don't worry, we'll be posting photos of them ALL after the event), B and C-grade celebrities (Captain Sisko from Deep Space Nine!), and even some surprise announcements from the movie presentations (Tron 2 is in the works, starring Jeff Bridges). Some quick impressions of the Max Payne footage shown today at the 20th Century Fox panel: the movie looks like it's taking the story seriously, and bullet-time shots are definitely different from what you've seen in the Matrix or John Woo films. The film apparently utilizes a camera that can shoot at 1000 frames per second -- one scene we saw slowed the firing of a single shot down to over half a minute. Another big surprise from that panel: Hugh Jackman made an unannounced appearance to show off the first footage from the Gavid Hood directed Wolverine movie. Gambit and Deadpool are confirmed to appear. Awesome!
These ladies can barely contain their excitement for Ghostbusters. Click through the jump for more geek-out photos.