Has this been done before?

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Magnanimous
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Has this been done before?

Postby Magnanimous » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:29 am UTC

While I was falling asleep last night, I was thinking about how when your eyes adjust to the darkness (using rods instead of cones, etc), you can make out shapes better and there's some potential for creepiness. And yet... There aren't that many games that use this. (If any?) It'd be cool to play a first-person horror game where you get thrown in a dark room, since there's the moment of Oh shit I can't see anything where am I, which turns into a more "normal" level over the next minute or so. Then when you're adjusted to the darkness, bright lights will be somewhat blinding until you get used to them again.

So are there any games like this? It doesn't seem that hard to implement, from a graphics standpoint.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Goldstein » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:41 am UTC

It also sounds pretty obnoxious. That said, I've played lots of games which have been so dark that when I leave the computer for five minutes and come back to it, the screen appears perfectly black and only by sitting there staring at it can I begin to make out shapes and continue to play.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby el_loco_avs » Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:06 am UTC

Magnanimous wrote:While I was falling asleep last night, I was thinking about how when your eyes adjust to the darkness (using rods instead of cones, etc), you can make out shapes better and there's some potential for creepiness. And yet... There aren't that many games that use this. (If any?) It'd be cool to play a first-person horror game where you get thrown in a dark room, since there's the moment of Oh shit I can't see anything where am I, which turns into a more "normal" level over the next minute or so. Then when you're adjusted to the darkness, bright lights will be somewhat blinding until you get used to them again.

So are there any games like this? It doesn't seem that hard to implement, from a graphics standpoint.



Most modern games actually use this in a more subtle way. Your 'eyes' adjust within seconds. Usually referred to as HDR (high dynamic range). iirc Shadow of the Colussus was one of the first to implement this. I know most new Scource Engine Valve games have it, I remember them talking about it in the Lost Coast developers commentary.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby el_loco_avs » Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:12 am UTC

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTkRNqy4jKE

^ demo of it.


So the tech has been there for a while already. As for a gaming mechanic? I think it would get annoying after a while. Definately a good variation of the LIGHTS ARE SUDDENLY OUT OMGHELP kinda thing though.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby SecondTalon » Tue Aug 10, 2010 2:07 pm UTC

Penumbra has something similar to which you speak. Video set to get you to the relevant bit. It is a horror game, of course. Bear that in mind.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Technical Ben » Tue Aug 10, 2010 6:37 pm UTC

The only game mechanic I can think of off the top of my head are "flash bangs" and "torches". But there has to be some game somewhere, where your character gets startled by bright lights, or goes almost blind in the dark to recover vision slowly...
With better application of HRD lighting this can be done more naturally in the gameplay. Run out of a cave into a load of bandits waiting as the sun sets? Your not going to see them as your eyes (virtual in this case) will take a while to adjust. Fallen into the dark well? You are not going to see what is making those scratching noises for a few seconds until your eyes adjust. :shock:
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Magnanimous » Tue Aug 10, 2010 7:06 pm UTC

... I can definitely see how this could be annoying. It'd be really boring to have to sit in the corner for a long time and wait for your character's eyes to adjust.

SecondTalon wrote:Penumbra has something similar to which you speak. Video set to get you to the relevant bit. It is a horror game, of course. Bear that in mind.
Oooh, cool. I'm adding Penumbra to the List of Games I Should Play Eventually.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Texas_Ben » Tue Aug 10, 2010 10:14 pm UTC

Magnanimous wrote:Oooh, cool. I'm adding Penumbra to the List of Games I Should Play Eventually.

It's actually fairly dissapointing. It's more of an adventure game with pretty obnoxious stealth sections. Your mileage may vary, of course, and you'll probably get more out of it if you go into it expecting an adventure game, but if you go in looking for a horror game you'll be dissapointed.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby SecondTalon » Tue Aug 10, 2010 11:14 pm UTC

Sez you.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Goldstein » Wed Aug 11, 2010 6:58 am UTC

Don't listen to him, Magnanimous!
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Texas_Ben » Wed Aug 11, 2010 2:21 pm UTC

All I'm saying is that I had been under the impression that it was a horror FPS rather than a horror adventure game. I'm just giving him the heads up.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby EmptySet » Wed Aug 11, 2010 2:37 pm UTC

The multiplayer portion of some Splinter Cell games (Chaos Theory and the one before that, I believe) has it for the mercenaries. But only if you stand still, strangely.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Aug 11, 2010 4:14 pm UTC

Texas_Ben wrote:All I'm saying is that I had been under the impression that it was a horror FPS rather than a horror adventure game. I'm just giving him the heads up.
Ah... you were expecting.. Undying?

I mean.. whether or not you think it's a successful horror game is up to opinion.. but given the setup of the first one - trapped in a mine where by reading the text provided things have clearly gone bad and having horrible creatures wander the halls, along with one part early on where you hear what sounds like someone being drug off and only find the remains..... I mean, it's clearly a horror game.

Which is why I didn't understand the
Texas_Ben wrote:but if you go in looking for a horror game you'll be disappointed.
bit.
heuristically_alone wrote:I want to write a DnD campaign and play it by myself and DM it myself.
heuristically_alone wrote:I have been informed that this is called writing a book.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Texas_Ben » Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:06 pm UTC

SecondTalon wrote:Which is why I didn't understand the
Texas_Ben wrote:but if you go in looking for a horror game you'll be disappointed.
bit.

I missed the "fps" that was supposed to be betweem the "horror" and "game".
I still enjoyed it immensely after I stopped trying to kill every zombie dog I saw.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:12 pm UTC

I thought AvP played with light in pretty creative ways, even though it likely feels incredibly outdated now.
I remember one mission where you start in a crashed APC, and it's red emergency lights are all you can see. You're standing in this tiny island of red, and everything is just black. You can hear the aliens skittering around. You can throw a few flares out to see where you're generally supposed to go, but it's like holding a candle in a blacked out stadium.
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:35 pm UTC

Indeed. AvP1&2 - Alien - Stealth FPS | Predator - Standard FPS | Marine - Survival Horror

That said, I don't recall either one doing much in the way of having your eyes adjust to light and dark settings, just that everything was dark and your (marine) lighting methods all sucked in their own special ways.

Alien and Predator could see fine.
heuristically_alone wrote:I want to write a DnD campaign and play it by myself and DM it myself.
heuristically_alone wrote:I have been informed that this is called writing a book.

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Magnanimous
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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Magnanimous » Wed Aug 11, 2010 7:22 pm UTC

Eh, I've learned to not go into horror games expecting much. At least, not much in the way of being scared; they can still be great games. A few series can get it right (Clock Tower, Call of Cthulhu, Fatal Frame, parts of Silent Hill and AvP, etc), but for the most part "horror" is just another part of the setting.

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Re: Has this been done before?

Postby Various Varieties » Fri Aug 13, 2010 12:01 am UTC

el_loco_avs wrote:Most modern games actually use this in a more subtle way. Your 'eyes' adjust within seconds. Usually referred to as HDR (high dynamic range). iirc Shadow of the Colussus was one of the first to implement this.

It's not exactly proper HDR lighting, but I think Metal Gear Solid 2 was one of the first games to subtly simulate the effect of a character's eyes adjusting as they enter a brightly-lit area - you can see the brightness change between 1:20 and 1:30 in this video.


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