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Old 19-03-2008, 11:10 PM   #1
mtmckinley
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Default Bioshock graphics?

Just curious, what do people *really* think about the art in Bioshock? I just played the demo and I have to say... while it obviously has great art direction and such, the whole overly-normal-mapped look just looks so overly shiny, overly 'bumpy" and, frankly, kinda crappy looking to me. Maybe I just need to play it on the xbox instead of my limited PC or something, but I dunno.

Any thoughts?
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Old 20-03-2008, 12:43 AM   #2
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dont know mike but im seeing far too much maths on TV commercials and film.., like kids with new toys, cool crush, the matrix look, artificial bleach by-pass, whizzing swirly things, ect

its digital for digital sake and the 'look at this, isnt this cool' act..,

IMHO bladerunner though full of compositing retained the 'film' look.

im waiting for it all to die down and return to 'film' with slight enhancement rather than a full frontal attack of compositing maths and presets.

off the subject but sort of in the ball park.., the application of digital FX in my opinion is, atm, being abused and is over used in all areas and now, i hear here.., even on a games level.., well im not surprised.
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Old 20-03-2008, 08:19 AM   #3
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It seems to me that nearly everything these days made on a computer is shiney. Is it an inherent limitation of computers or is it just some flawed ideal of what computer graphics should be? eg. shiny = cool, therfore it = good.

The moment someone makes a game or film with a dark gritty atmosphere, I think I'll give up internet for a week.
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Old 20-03-2008, 08:29 AM   #4
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Originally posted by The Architect
It seems to me that nearly everything these days made on a computer is shiney. Is it an inherent limitation of computers or is it just some flawed ideal of what computer graphics should be? eg. shiny = cool, therfore it = good.

The moment someone makes a game or film with a dark gritty atmosphere, I think I'll give up internet for a week.
It is a bit of lim limitation on the comps side, making things not "perfect" is hard, natures random, computers aint, even a random numbers not really random.
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Old 20-03-2008, 08:33 AM   #5
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haing only played the demo of this on the xbox I thought it looked quite good, but then not as good as "Gear of war" even though it was the same engine.

Now "Gears of war" looks better on my xbox 360 than it does on my pc, but my graphics card is for 3d not games (even though it still plays most with out a problem) so maybe it just a PC thing. It still looks good - dont get me wrong but I feel it looks more moody on the 360.

The only problem I have with the whole normal map thing is there are now too many hero characters with silly facual scars for no reason other than it looks cool in zbrush. Gone are the days of the good looking main characters.
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Old 20-03-2008, 08:40 AM   #6
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Originally posted by tweetytunes
The only problem I have with the whole normal map thing is there are now too many hero characters with silly facual scars for no reason other than it looks cool in zbrush. Gone are the days of the good looking main characters.
This reminds me of the previalence of shallow characters... and of this game review where the two reviewers blasted this game for including utterly pointless scenes of a half-naked elf in critical parts of the storyline. It was rather amusing to see the developers go so low, yet rather sad cause the artistic medium is being twisted into some gaudy try-hard... ...thing.

Sorry for the rant...
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Old 20-03-2008, 04:42 PM   #7
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i always have preferred N64 graphics and worse. new graphics can be kind of-boring. New graphics take less talent to make too. they don't REALLY need to limit the polycount and find ways around limitations. they just make it.


not sure that made sense though :p
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Old 20-03-2008, 06:35 PM   #8
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dont think its the computers fault.., thats a bit like saying a brush limits the art of painting.., maybe it does have limitations but at the end of the day its how and who is using it.., there are seamless composites out there that are not shiny.., as for games?? maybe the 'shiny' look is what is considered 'game style'??? and one wouldn't think it a far cry from any motion graphics??

theres always.., 'desaturated' isnt there??

wouldn't know myself, only seen two or three in my life

maybe it maps for maps sake.., RGB, radiosity, reflection, occlusion, .., ect.., ect.., ect.., done well they work well to.
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Old 20-03-2008, 08:04 PM   #9
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What I mean Mirek is that if rendering time is an issue (which in games it is) then you cant add the bells and whistles to it, to make it look the best.

Like you said, the brush dosent limit the artist, but only give the artist one brush a limited palate and a short amount of time and your not going to get the best work.

Also I think that shineyness does come form the cool factor, its like "whahhh look at those refelctions aint it well coool" not that its realistic or anything,
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Old 20-03-2008, 09:42 PM   #10
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Well, my point is, if you look at Doom3... it's just all super shiny, super bumpy, normal mapped out the wazoo... blah. And while I like the art direction of Bioshock, the art deco style and the entire premise is awesome, it's still that whole shiny, bumpy thing again.

I havent had a chance to really play the game since I just played the demo, so as long as the game is actually good, I suppose it doesn't really matter, but after all the hype of how awesome it looks, I was a bit disapointed.
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Old 21-03-2008, 04:07 AM   #11
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Originally posted by gster123
What I mean Mirek is that if rendering time is an issue (which in games it is) then you cant add the bells and whistles to it, to make it look the best.
I thought that having reflections slow down computers and having no reflections doesn't, thus a more realistic game would be achieve higher framecounts and be more better looking at the same time.


[i]
Also I think that shineyness does come form the cool factor, its like "whahhh look at those refelctions aint it well coool" not that its realistic or anything, [/b]
I don't get how shiney became cool. It's like screaming out, "Look at me, I'm shiney, I'm sooo kewl!"

Not bashing shineyness though, it's awesome for eyes and I can spend minutes staring into the eyes of characters made by artists, although I don't think its good for my eyesight.
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Old 21-03-2008, 04:52 AM   #12
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Originally posted by The Architect
I thought that having reflections slow down computers and having no reflections doesn't, thus a more realistic game would be achieve higher framecounts and be more better looking at the same time.
It will do, but making blured reflections is much harder on the computer though, which makes it more realistic.

Think about a mirror, you render with no reflections and its just a bit of black geo, with OTT reflections it at least can be seen as a mirror. More works needed to get it looking right though.
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Old 21-03-2008, 05:00 AM   #13
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Originally posted by gster123
It will do, but making blured reflections is much harder on the computer though, which makes it more realistic.

Think about a mirror, you render with no reflections and its just a bit of black geo, with OTT reflections it at least can be seen as a mirror. More works needed to get it looking right though.

Not sure if blurred reflections are more realistic, or am I thinking of mirrors, prompted by your example?

But do we need reflections? There are lots of scenes that don't require any, eg. dark dungeons.
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Old 21-03-2008, 05:33 AM   #14
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I think you are, blured reflections are key to getting rid of the clinical CG, that you see all over the place.

As for do we need reflections, well if you want it to be realistic then yes. BUT there are places where you wont really need them but they will still be there, your in a dungeon and the walls are wet the light hits the damp walls, how you you protray the waters there without them??
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Old 21-03-2008, 05:41 AM   #15
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Originally posted by gster123
I think you are, blured reflections are key to getting rid of the clinical CG, that you see all over the place.

As for do we need reflections, well if you want it to be realistic then yes. BUT there are places where you wont really need them but they will still be there, your in a dungeon and the walls are wet the light hits the damp walls, how you you protray the waters there without them??

Can't it be a nice dry dungeon in a place like a desert or something? Those ketchup stains might need reflections though, unless the enemy are those oven-dried egyptian walking-dead warriors from The Mummy Returns.

Anyways, I happen to recall that Rainbow Six Raven Shield had "blurred" reflections, but they used a pic for it so reflections were static. Maybe if they were to mix static and dynamic (and maybe they do) they can make it reasonably fast while being realistic at the same time.
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