stranglehold's cutscenes

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by inlimbo, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. inlimbo

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    seems like they're prerendered except when they quickly transfer in and out of gameplay for brief segments. i've noticed artifacting for both the 360 and ps3 version, and the fluid dynamics of the drinks in the game point to this, though i'd think that could easily be done in a real-time cutscene.

    assuming that's correct, the question is "why?" i know it's less hassle, especially with scenes that aren't easily feasible in real-time, but there are too many games that pull this off. i assume the the former is the reason the likes of kotor and jade empire have their share of bink video'd cutscenes, with the effects in certain air/space battles. but that often ends up looking incongrous with the in-game/real-time assets to the point that real-time effects would've looked better and not too much for the engine to handle. even god of war 2 carried this trend from the first game with an engine that wouldn't necessitate video cutscenes.

    if i'm wrong about stranglehold, it might just be artifacting from post-processing, a la lower-res lighting passes or whatever, but i don't know.
     
  2. betan

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    Nice topic, possibly wrong forum.

    PS3 Stranglehold cutscenes indeed look prerendered.

    I'm OK with prerendered scenes though. Realtime cutscenes generally keep the scale small but the model detail high still ending up inconsistant with the in-game look. They also tend to disregard many details like position of your character before entering the scene or sometimes even obvious things like weapons, etc. So the things that I don't like about CGIs generally end up in realtime cutscenes as well.
    If that's the case, why not use the CGI and cut the development time, improve the scale and lighting or make loading screens enjoyable?
    God of War is an extreme case however. I too, prefer in-game assets and consistant look.

    Ideally it would be nice to have full continuity similar to Half-Life approach but if that's not happening why bother with realtime scenes especially when space is not an issue.
     
  3. inlimbo

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    my biggest gripe is that prerendered camera work tends to be uninspired and often animators "overuse" the benefits of prerendered effects to the point that they become unnatural. prime examples of the latter are cloth and hair simulation, which have attractive finite simulation possibilites, but too easily come off as awkward in look and behavior.

    i like real-time cutscenes because of the near unlimited time to make adjustments to scenes and the ease of doing so, without worrying about rendering time. i think developers tend to make some great cutscene tools, which benefit camerawork and such. even big budget CG work now suffers in comparison to the cinematography in some videogames.
     
  4. Graham

    Graham Hello :-)
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    Unless I'm mistaken, they are usually used as loading screens. It can make the game appear to be still running, but it's actually loading in the background. I haven't played the full version of stranglehold, but I didn't notice cut scenes in the demo seemed to be followed by a new environment.
    I also suspect the opening to the heavenly sword demo was a video, hiding the load time. :mrgreen:
     
  5. betan

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    True for HS but you can pass the videos in Stranglehold demo without any loading screen.
     
  6. Jabjabs

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    It was one of the Insomniac podcasts they where talking about this issue and why they where using pre-rendered over real time on some cut scenes, for them it was to mostly hide load times or to do scenes that involved multiple locations where they wouldn't have the memory to handle it in real time but that was just for them.

    The other big issue they said was that setting up the scenes for RT use was always an issue when it came to clipping, character placement and just making them work well in the engine.

    As for Stranglehold, I've notice that a few scenes do have quite a few additional characters and locations so that would be the memory/performance issue there, the other thing is that it's also easier to just pause the gameplay scenario and play a video than it is to load in the new assets (animation/audio/characters etc) and then reset up the whole scene once it's finished.

    I suppose it's just easier to pull off since it's much more simple.
     
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