Omerta is a multiplayer game in development by Jana Reinhardt and Friedrich Hanisch, which looks quite promising already. They are using Irrlicht as 3D Engine, RakNet for networking, Lua as scripting Language and irrKlang for sound.

There are even some YouTube Videos showing the game. Christian told me that the game should be finished in a few days.

fourteen comments, already:

wow, looks very nice!!!
jens - 31 01 08 - 18:47

I hate to sound argumentative, but that doesn’t look nice. Not at all. The graphics remind me of something from a pre-shader time period. Granted you don’t really need shaders to get a decent appearance – but you should at least try to make things nice with what you have.

Just look at the frame rate in their screenshots. 47fps with only 32K triangles. I’ve made stuff in Blitz3D’s horribly sluggish engine that gets higher performance than that.
Frobozz - 31 01 08 - 20:35

Frobozz, you don’t even know the specs of the machine the shots were taken on so there’s absolutely no point in arguing about the performance. And for a student project created in little time, this looks very well done to me. In particular since Friedrich claims to be no programmer at all.

But now I’m looking forward to seeing your games, Frobozz. Go ahead!
matt (link) - 31 01 08 - 21:42

Hi, I’m Friedrich Hanisch.
Yes, we don’t use pretty shaders and stuff. We thought about using normalmaps, but to be honest, doing all the concepting, drawing, programming, modelling, texturing and animating was hard enough to do in four months with only two people. ;) So those were the things we have, Frobozz.

That said, it’s clear that the game won’t be a game. It’s just the prototype of a game. Sorry, Niko. ;) We have no intentions to finish it, as the semester is over and we have to move on. (Okay, one professor asked us to extend it, but to be honest, the prototype grew to a monster in the last weeks and I don’t want to touch it again.)

Frobozz, the horrible performance has many reasons, the first was mentioned by matt: I am not a real programmer. I study design, not computer science. Second, I didn’t had the time for many optimizations; I just wanted to add at least some gameplay. Third, I use DirectX 9 (because of some custom materials) – which doesn’t have the new VBOs of Irrlicht implemented. We use pretty much nodes in the scene, which is a performance eater. Fourth, the more characters are in the scene, the more you can say bye-bye to the frames per second. Vertex animation is expensive. Really expensive. And remember, there is no inbuilt hardware skinning in Irrlicht yet.

Perhaps you could at least try to look at the screenshots with the eye of a designer. We don’t get grades for fancy shaders, we get grades for choice of colors, overall style, everything fitting together.
shogun () - 01 02 08 - 01:57

BTW, thanks for the blog entry, Niko.

We will upload a new (last) video soon which shows the final result, and some screenshots, too. My computer, even though not that bad, can’t handle the game + Fraps decently, so I have to do this somewhere else (which costs time). Too bad the multiplayer part won’t be visible. (Which is BTW a fifth point on my performance-eater-list: the game on the screens always runs as server and client at the same time.)
shogun () - 01 02 08 - 02:02

@matt: Thanks to the way Niko worded it, and the fact that I can’t read German led me to believe that it was a commercial game. It didn’t help any that the website looked pretty professional.

As a prototype however the graphics are understandable. No sense wasting a lot of effort when public exposure is extremely limited. Like the screenshot below. :)
Frobozz - 01 02 08 - 08:55

You did a very nice job. Colors fit well and characters are unique. The house and tree models look great as well.
Frank () - 01 02 08 - 11:53

I really like it and considering the time and effort you and your friend put into it you did a great job, well done.
MasterGod - 01 02 08 - 12:37

I think it’s incredible how much you got in such a short amount of time. Very impressive. Also I like those characters.
CuteAlien - 01 02 08 - 14:40

i like the style a lot great work.

@Frobozz, im just 16 but i dont think that good graphics make a game better (not even his visuals sometimes)
Halan - 01 02 08 - 20:15

It somewhat depends on the genre and, to a lesser degree, the game itself as to whether or not good graphics make the game better. Unfortunately most of the MMOs I’ve run into tend to consist of repetitious gameplay thus other categories, especially graphics, get more focus.

About the only real thing I dislike about the visuals is the fog. I understand its there to reduce the load and to reduce the popping of objects as they come within rendering range, but its literally so dense you can barely make out your surroundings with any detail in a couple of the screenshots.

Regardless I’d probably give it a go if it were online. Even if I couldn’t read the text in it.
Frobozz - 02 02 08 - 18:38

Very cool concept and game! and I really like the look of the game very pro and fresh! [to much shaders games outside there that eats your PC and 0 gameplay] If you guys have time after a while maybe we can give it a second shot!
Totoro () - 04 02 08 - 11:06

dont hate me but Really graphics are not well also artistically, It is not clear looking, u should realy work on concept art and color combination. 2 people in my knowing have done 5 times more than it in 5 months. anyway +5 points for trying and -10 points for abndoning good work halfway. U really have no passion for ur creation it is just a semester project. Well ur choice. -20 points for apathy. You get an “F” here.
kinjel () - 05 02 08 - 16:37

No, we won’t hate you. ;)
But please show me the work of those two people, I’m really, really interested. Perhaps you think this is some kind of competition, but this is not the case. We’re all learning here.
shogun () - 05 02 08 - 17:33

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