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Unreal Engine, DCUO, and Shadow People

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Rick Tacular
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Unreal Engine, DCUO, and Shadow People

One of the things that I dislike about DCUO )and I don't know if it's a problem with the engine, how it was implemented by Sony, my computer, or whatnot) is that as I go around, I see a lot of "shadow people". I will load into an area and everyone around me takes more time to load up the various textures on players and NPCs and while the game is doing so, the avatars are shadows and sometimes has temporary shields where chest emblems are supposed to be. Also, I don't like the way the game will go see through when you zoom close into the characters (floating eyeballs and teeth look quite unsettling when you zoom in or get too close to a wall).

Anyway, is that DCUO or the Unreal Engine? Is there a way I can avoid it? Will these 'features' exist in CoT? I hope I haven't been too unclear - my cold medicine is making me even more fuzzy than normal. Thanks. =)

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As far as the eyes go,

As far as the eyes go, usually the deal with intricate parts of a model, such as the eyes, mouth, and sometimes hands and feet if a character is dressed in something loose like a sweatshirt, robe, or dress, is that they're separate parts of the overall mesh, and aren't physically attached to the rest of it. The reason why you see crazy eyeballs and things like that when you mush yourself into a wall is because the main model has already faded in order to make room for the camera or is being clipped through, but the eyeballs and mouth are still visible away because they are separate / farther away from the camera and aren't being clipped through or faded. So it's not so much an engine problem as it is a general problem. It can be fixed by coding the details to fade away with the rest of the mesh, if fading is used in order to make way for the camera in the first place, but if it's just left up to clipping, then it'll be something that you see no matter what.

As far as the "shadow people" issue goes, that's an issue called Culling. Most computers can't handle rendering everyone in an area at once, because it'll cause things to play very very slowly, or possibly crash, especially if the computer is a bit on the older side of things. As a result, most newer MMOs, such as Guild Wars 2, use something called Culling. Basically, people who are closer to you are rendered in full detail, while others are rendered with less detail, or are loaded with stock models, or simply aren't loaded at all. Generally, Culling processes place Rendering ahead of Detail, so rather than waiting for the full model to be ready before pushing it in, the computer rushes out a stock model or low-detail one, then once it's ready, puts that out there before starting on the longer process to develop the full thing. I personally am not aware of a remedy for this, but chances are it would simply be something along the lines of putting the Detail first and foremost in the operational procedures, meaning that you wouldn't see anything at all until the full model is ready. Depending on how good your computer is and how detailed the game's models are, this might unfortunately result in you not seeing much at all most of the time.

Hope this helps. Note that I am not a Dev.

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Rick Tacular
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Well, my computer's not the

Well, my computer's not the latest and greatest, but it's no slouch. Ah, well. For CoT I'll put up with the limitations of whatever engine they're using, limitations of my machine, etc. =)