Doom 3 BFG Edition

cylonsurfer
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:32 am

Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by cylonsurfer » Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:35 am

Hi there,

I notice that Doom 3 BFG has built in support for the Ocular Rift HMD including head tracking.

I'm a user of the Sony HMZ-T1 and TrackIR 5, does Doom 3 BFG support TrackIR and if not how likely will it be that you will add this game to your list of supported games?

Thanks.

Seth Steiling
Posts: 1366
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:29 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by Seth Steiling » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:25 am

Hey cylonsurfer (just wrapping up Battlestar Galactica at the moment :) ).

Carmack evaluated our tech for inclusion in Doom 3 BFG, but he decided to implement Rift instead. It's up to the game devs to implement TrackIR, as the modification happens in their code base.

It would definitely be possible to implement Rift and TrackIR, and Carmack has our SDK (so he could do so whenever he wants), but up to now he hasn't taken that step.

You might want to contact their dev team with your request. They might be open to patching TrackIR in with a little community pressure. :)
Marketing Manager
TrackIR | OptiTrack

cylonsurfer
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:32 am

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by cylonsurfer » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:46 am

I'll certainly do that, will you guys also be making contact again and showing your interest in bringing head tacking support to the trackIR platform? I agree with your point about community pressure but would a bit from your side not re-affirm your desire to bring this feature to your user base?

Seth Steiling
Posts: 1366
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:29 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by Seth Steiling » Fri Oct 19, 2012 10:53 am

[quote=cylonsurfer] I'll certainly do that, will you guys also be making contact again and showing your interest in bringing head tacking support to the trackIR platform? I agree with your point about community pressure but would a bit from your side not re-affirm your desire to bring this feature to your user base? [/quote]
I'm not sure I understand your question. The Doom 3 devs would be responsible for integrating our code into their title in order to support head tracking in the game. We've provided them with the SDK necessary to do so, and they know that we would love it if they did. At this point, the main tactic to convince them to support TrackIR would be customer feedback, since we've already made our case to John Carmack directly.
Marketing Manager
TrackIR | OptiTrack

cylonsurfer
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:32 am

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by cylonsurfer » Sat Oct 20, 2012 1:01 am

Have you guys even looked at the code to to see if you can hook your stuff into the pre-existing code for head tracking? There obviously must be some in order for the game to head track with the rift.

As I said before community pressure is one thing but it doesn't sound like you guys are making much of an effort to get TrackIR support into games other than "well we provided our SDK it's up to the devs".

As I said previously, I understand this but to me this isn't all you can be doing, not by a long shot. Games are modded all the time, with and without the developers being on board. Other posts from your dev team seem to indicate that if they knew a way they would add support for games such as Skyrim but are unable to find the necessary API hooks to do it. Why the difference here - we know such hooks exist.

So I'll ask again, other than sitting back and waiting for a dev team to use your SDK and your community to bully developers what will you be doing to bring TrackIR support to a game which already has built in head tracking?

You can hardly be the forefront of Head Tracking technologies when games with native head tracking support do not even consider the inclusion of your product. I cannot say that I am filled with much confidence over the future of your product if this remains the case along with your companies seemingly passive, none assertive attitude.

Liquidje
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Oct 22, 2012 2:19 am

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by Liquidje » Mon Oct 22, 2012 2:29 am

[quote=cylonsurfer]Have you guys even looked at the code to to see if you can hook your stuff into the pre-existing code for head tracking? There obviously must be some in order for the game to head track with the rift. [/quote]
Yeah it is not that easy. Only yesterday it was approved to go open source (developers don't like sharing their code, see), so maybe that is a vantage point. However, there is also the issue on getting modifications released: many game developers are very hesitating to use other people their source code (for a good reason)

[quote=cylonsurfer]
As I said before community pressure is one thing but it doesn't sound like you guys are making much of an effort to get TrackIR support into games other than "well we provided our SDK it's up to the devs".

As I said previously, I understand this but to me this isn't all you can be doing, not by a long shot. Games are modded all the time, with and without the developers being on board. Other posts from your dev team seem to indicate that if they knew a way they would add support for games such as Skyrim but are unable to find the necessary API hooks to do it. Why the difference here - we know such hooks exist.[/quote]
You don't seem to know anything about programming. That's okay, but don't say others what they should do. The modding you are talking about is rarely done on such a level as adding head tracking (causing the character and camera to be dislocated from each other). Also, legally it is not allowed to reverse engineer and/or modify code. Most developers are cool with it, as long as people don't make many from it.

[quote=cylonsurfer]
So I'll ask again, other than sitting back and waiting for a dev team to use your SDK and your community to bully developers what will you be doing to bring TrackIR support to a game which already has built in head tracking?

You can hardly be the forefront of Head Tracking technologies when games with native head tracking support do not even consider the inclusion of your product. I cannot say that I am filled with much confidence over the future of your product if this remains the case along with your companies seemingly passive, none assertive attitude.[/quote]
I can understand your frustration, but you are full of assumptions, as you can't know how much effort is put into appealing to developers. The point is, many developers just don't care for headtracking, as there is quite a small market for that. It's a catch 22 :(

cylonsurfer
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:32 am

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by cylonsurfer » Tue Oct 23, 2012 6:23 am

"I can understand your frustration, but you are full of assumptions, as you can't know how much effort is put into appealing to developers. The point is, many developers just don't care for headtracking, as there is quite a small market for that. It's a catch 22 frown"

Doom 3 BFG Edition has built in Head Tracking support. The ID devs obviously do care for headtracking just not TrackIR. That does not spell such a bright future for this product does it?

Seth Steiling
Posts: 1366
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:29 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by Seth Steiling » Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:20 am

[quote=cylonsurfer]"I can understand your frustration, but you are full of assumptions, as you can't know how much effort is put into appealing to developers. The point is, many developers just don't care for headtracking, as there is quite a small market for that. It's a catch 22 frown"

Doom 3 BFG Edition has built in Head Tracking support. The ID devs obviously do care for headtracking just not TrackIR. That does not spell such a bright future for this product does it?
[/quote]
Carmack put in the head tracking code for his own HMD, which was being designed about that time. (He switched it to Rift after he discovered that project and suspended his own.) He actually did integrate TrackIR for testing purposes, but presumably removed the code for release. Why? I'm not sure, though I expect it was a QA issue. You don't put a feature into your final release unless it's been through extensive testing first, and his integration of TrackIR was weeks before the game went public. Plus, Carmack's obvious focus has been on head tracking for HMDs--something he prefers inertial for because of range limitations with TrackIR.

He goes over all of this in his QuakeCon 2012 keynote (in which, incidentally, he sings TrackIR's praises for several minutes):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt-iVFxgFWk

All of that to say: it's not correct to assume that ID's devs (or, more precisely, Carmack) don't care for TrackIR. ;)
Marketing Manager
TrackIR | OptiTrack

Seth Steiling
Posts: 1366
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2008 11:29 am
Location: Corvallis, Oregon

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by Seth Steiling » Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:42 am

Regarding mod development:

1) We have modded support into a few games--in all cases, it was a tremendously nontrivial project. Integrating head tracking via our API is super simple for game devs, because they just tie it to their in-game camera(s). Modding view control via a memory hack is very hard to do.

It's even more complex in an FPS, because it includes separating view from aim when the engine doesn't intend it and things like HUDs, mini-maps, iron-sight aiming, models, animations, reticles, etc. assume that view and aim are tied together.

It's highly likely that an FPS view control mod will significantly degrade the game visuals, because you're exposing models that the game devs intended to be hidden. This can even result in cheating if it allows users to see through game environments when the view translates (something the modeling wasn't designed with in mind).

2) Because of all of this, many devs don't appreciate the idea of a third party hacking support into their game. We're sensitive to this, because we respect our game dev partners and rely on a healthy, mutually beneficial relationship with them to grow our game roster. We tread very lightly when it comes to mods, because we don't want to jeopardize these relationships.

3) If Doom 3 BFG Edition had provisions for head tracking in their SDK prior to the open source announcement, it would be the first time I've seen that in my time here, and not something we would have anticipated or been informed of. Now that it's been announced as open source, it's quite possible that a mod could be developed for head tracking--especially considering the head tracking support that's already in there. I'll forward the request to our dev team and see what they say.

It's important to note that new games are the lifeblood of our tech--we're very aware of this. We're not passive in how we pitch our tech or pursue support. We WANT support in Doom 3 BFG Edition, along with every other title we go after. And we'd LOVE to mod support into every one we miss on. We'd certainly do so, if it were as easy as just making the decision to do so.

One significant qualifier on this D3 BFG possibility--our devs work on three product platforms simultaneously--TrackIR being one of them--and they're presently heads down working on our largest development project in company history for our OptiTrack line. So it's probably safe to assume that nobody will be available to jump on a mod project next week.

- Seth
Marketing Manager
TrackIR | OptiTrack

cylonsurfer
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2012 6:32 am

Re: Doom 3 BFG Edition

Post by cylonsurfer » Tue Oct 23, 2012 11:43 pm

"3) If Doom 3 BFG Edition had provisions for head tracking in their SDK prior to the open source announcement, it would be the first time I've seen that in my time here, and not something we would have anticipated or been informed of. Now that it's been announced as open source, it's quite possible that a mod could be developed for head tracking--especially considering the head tracking support that's already in there. I'll forward the request to our dev team and see what they say."

That is fantastic news. Could I kindly request you keep us updated on this?

Thanks

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