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Submitted by Michael Fawcett, posted on March 02, 2002

Image Description, by Michael Fawcett

These are 2 screenshots from my final project at Full Sail. We had a team of 4 and 2 months to complete the project from scratch.

  • Particle Systems for spell effects
  • DOF animation for all player models
  • SceneGraph traversing for rendering and culling
  • Multiplayer support (Client/Server model: We haven't stress tested to find out the limit, but we played 5 clients with no noticeable increase in lag, i'm guessing we could handle 10-15 clients)
  • Menu System
  • OpenAL for 3D positional sound.
  • The game is called Relic and is a First/Third Person Shooter. The player can choose from a Max-Payne style view or a typical FPS view.. Instead of using guns though there are 4 classes of wizards that the user can play, each one with 5 unique spells.

    Relic is multi-player only at the moment. We used Quazal's Net-Z API for the networking. Net-Z is being used by Microsoft for the X-Box's multiplayer support as well.

    There are 4 levels, one for each wizard class. Pictured are the Elementalist in his Volcano level, and the Naturalist wizard in his Garden level. The screenshots are from our observer camera so that you could get a better view of the level, the spell, and the character.

    There are particle effects for meteors, poison clouds, insect swarms, dirt explosions, snow fall, and fire.

    We used Multigen Creator to make all the character and level models. The scenegraph in Creator worked great because we used OpenSceneGraph for the rendering and model loading in our engine. We had to add DOF support to the .flt loader in OpenSceneGraph so that we could do the animation for our characters. We were planning on using sequence animation, but went with DOF to use less memory.

    OpenAL was used for the 3D positional sound. We implemented an add-on to the .flt loader so that we could place sound in the level using Creator. We used the sound coordinates to handle ambient sound effects, such as lava bubbling, crickets, crows, etc.

    More screenshots are available at my homepage

    There is no download available at this time. Besides the distro is around 500 MB so i doubt anyone would download it.

    Image of the Day Gallery


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    Archive Notice: This thread is old and no longer active. It is here for reference purposes. This thread was created on an older version of the flipcode forums, before the site closed in 2005. Please keep that in mind as you view this thread, as many of the topics and opinions may be outdated.

    March 02, 2002, 05:33 PM

    Mmmm, pretty... especially for 2 months work! Congrats!


    March 02, 2002, 05:49 PM

    Wow, all that from scratch in two months. Been coding 24/7?


    March 02, 2002, 05:50 PM

    Yay! people actually finishing something. Great work!
    Do the spells just replace the guns (i.e. fireballs) or are they doing something intresting?

    Luke Philpot

    March 02, 2002, 05:56 PM

    That is amazing! Can't wait to see some gameplay!

    Seb. Wagner

    March 02, 2002, 06:43 PM


    Rasmus Christian Kaae

    March 02, 2002, 06:43 PM

    People should be more creative when writing comments on the IOTD. I for one would like to bash the graphician of this project, the textures looks horrible. I don't know about the code, but I guess it's just a generic indoor engine (which could be derived from few documents and turned into realtime-useable-code in less than a weekend).

    However a thumbs up for having the guts of displaying this on a public forum :-)


    March 02, 2002, 06:46 PM

    I saw the pressentation of this at Full Sail and this game had some great game play. Well done guys. I especially liked the defense spells.


    March 02, 2002, 07:17 PM

    some of those textures look familiar in the bottom pic, tomb raider?

    anyway, great job (esp for 2 months)!

    Robert Pasquin

    March 02, 2002, 08:03 PM

    Looks pretty good. Though I dunno if you could say you made the game from scratch since you are using preexisting engines such as OpenSceneGraph and whatnot. :P


    March 02, 2002, 08:16 PM

    Uh... 500 mb for 4 levels, 4 classes and 5 spells ? ouch! Should I suggest optimizing a bit here and there?

    What is taking that much space? the sound files?

    Maybe you should try adding some shadows (lightmaps for example), it would produce a much more interresting environnement.

    Michael Fawcett

    March 02, 2002, 08:34 PM

    Hey, thanks for the comments. 500 mb is from the sound mostly. Uncompressed and we didn't have time to implement an mp3 loader or anything.

    We would've loved to make better graphics, textures, etc. But we're all programmers and suck horribly at doing models and making textures.

    OpenSceneGraph is far from an engine. We used it for model loading and rendering. That's it. Not only that, it's an Alpha API and we had to fix a lot of bugs that were in OSG.

    Lightmaps and such would've been a lot of fun to add, but like I said, we had 2 months to make this game.

    It will be displayed at GDC in March if anyone wants to see it in action. We will be at the Quazal booth next to Sun Microsystems.

    Michael Fawcett

    March 02, 2002, 08:35 PM

    You don't even know...

    Michael Fawcett

    March 02, 2002, 08:37 PM

    The spells replace the guns. Each character has 5 spells at the moment. A basic projectile to shoot at others (fireball, skull), a wall spell (shoots up from the ground) that blocks incoming spells, a sheild spell that surrounds the player and moves with him that reflects spells, a more powerful projectile, and a flight spell.

    Michael Russell

    March 02, 2002, 09:15 PM

    "Net-Z is being used by Microsoft for the X-Box's multiplayer support as well."

    Not necessarily. Net-Z is an approved networking middleware provider, meaning that any approved Xbox developer, including Microsoft, can license their libraries for use on the Xbox. However, my group isn't using Net-Z. However, use of Net-Z is not required for multiplayer on the Xbox. In my group, we're using the standard DirectPlay libraries that ship with the Xbox XDK.

    In future posts, please double-check the way you phrase things. You never know how things will be taken.

    For Quazal's press release, see:

    Michael Fawcett

    March 02, 2002, 10:01 PM

    Nice info. Thanks.


    March 02, 2002, 10:09 PM

    Amazing work for 2 months! I have to agree that the textures and models are somewhat "lacking", but this has already been explained ;)
    Good luck at GDC! The game sounds very interesting!


    March 02, 2002, 11:43 PM

    Rasmus Christian Kaae,

    You make it sound as if the graphics are awful. They are very reasonable for a project that had to be finished in 2 months (as you could have read in their comment.) I for one think the graphics are pretty good.

    (PS: The funny thing is that you even provide a link to your own demo's... "Briantro"?)


    March 03, 2002, 02:01 AM


    I read comments like this that make me never want to come back to flipcode (at least the IOTD part). This elite-ist "thats not so cool" attitude is so stupid. Every ITOD there is always some stuck-up nerd that feels he is under attack because someone else is showing off their work, and must say something negative and put down that person. Why? Grow up.


    March 03, 2002, 03:01 AM

    Ratman -

    There's an old programmer joke:

    Q. How many programmers does it take to change a light bulb?

    A. 10 (It takes only one to actually change the light bulb, and 9 others to sit around and comment how they could have done it better.)

    I guess some programmers won't find this particularly funny, and its kind of a sad, but true comment.

    Personally, I think almost all of the IOTDs are amazing and I'm sure they're the product of some really long hours.

    Jason Kozak

    March 03, 2002, 04:18 AM

    Model loading and rendering? Sounds like a 3d engine to me :)

    Regardless, excellent work, and IMO you deserve props for not doing everything yourselves. I'm sure even with all the debugging OSG required, your decision to use it and NetZ saved a lot of time, and probably resulted in more robust code. Knowing when to use existing code is a most useful skill that no developer should be without.

    Good luck at the GDC!

    Timothy Barnes

    March 03, 2002, 05:16 AM

    Now that's quite impressive. 2 months only? this rate you should have a really cool professional game/engine in a few more months. It's looking really nice even though it lacks lighting. Most engines look bad without lighting. If you added a dark shade you may even pull off the mysterious look that Alice has.

    Nice work

    Michael Fawcett

    March 03, 2002, 05:29 AM

    Yea we really had some cool ideas in mind, but 2 months isn't a lot of time to develop much. We are satisfied with the results and are proud of our work.

    Thanks for all the positive comments.

    Steve Streeting

    March 03, 2002, 08:59 AM

    Very impressive work - to finish ANYTHING in 2 months is an awesome accomplishment, let alone a playable game. Most teams would spend that time just working out WHAT to do, not actually doing it.

    Ok the graphics aren't fantastic, but programmer art never is (especially mine!). Considering you did this as well as the coding I say you're due plenty of kudos for getting anything which isn't downright painful to look at.

    Ignore the negative comments - I especially hate it when people say 'oh yeah, it's easy, you just copy stuff off the net'. This clearly indicates that they have no understanding of all the other zillion things required to pull a final product together rather than just creating a graphics demo.

    You can be justly proud of this, well done.


    March 03, 2002, 09:24 AM

    I think its hilarious :))

    Matt P

    March 03, 2002, 09:32 AM

    cool. If you achieved this in 2 months I think in another 2 you can have lighting and nice textures + better sound compression.

    nice going.


    March 03, 2002, 10:49 AM

    Ah, I always thought the answer was 0 'cause it's a hardware problem...



    March 03, 2002, 11:05 AM

    Nice job! I agree with the comments that for programmer art, you could have done a lot worse. My programmer art looks like a bunch of cubes and triceratops where the level geometry is supposed to be.

    The green spell is cool-- is that one giant quad or a ton of particles?



    March 03, 2002, 11:54 AM

    yeah.. except the .wav problem, it looks damn cool in my eyes.. i would be happy to have done anything like that in 2 months:) i'm stuck with my fucking little .3ds converter even now;)

    good work.. hope you get more time to finish it.. i really do want to know how this looks like if you get a year of time.., when you have time and mood do implement lighting (spells need lighting! spells need lighting!;)), lightmaps or what ever.. and possibly, you can find real artists, but for programmers-artwork that is damn beautiful! at least, you can SEE what it should be! ;)

    don't get stressed by the unfair replies, that is good work, really good..

    Warren Marshall

    March 03, 2002, 12:08 PM

    I agree. I don't know why people feel to need to slag other peoples work. Why not be appreciative that the person is sharing?

    Don't get so defensive about your own abilities (or inabilities, as the case may be) ... just be happy that someone is taking part.


    March 03, 2002, 01:16 PM

    I have to agree, for 2 months work this is amazing. Makes me wish I could stop tarting around with my terrain engine and write something actually playable.

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