The Haus

Monday, November 15, 1999

Vampire: The Masquerade article

Check out this mega-interesting "Designer Log" article for Vampire, on The Vault. Interesting read.

Q3DemoTest First Impressions

I've heard a number of people complaining about a major speed slow-down in Q3DemoTest from Q3Test 1.08. After changing to my Q3Test settings (high quality settings, 640x480, cg_gibs 0, no dynamic lights, plus going to "high" audio quality) my fps dropped less than two fps from 1.08 (DemoTest: 42.4 fps, Q3Test 1.08: 44.0). It's hard to tell exactly because it's not the same demo (DemoTest: demo001, Q3Test: q3demo1) but I don't notice the huge changes that some were griping about.

The bots are pretty slick, you have to keep your head up even on the easier difficulty settings. I like how each bot has different weapons preferences, attack/retreat tendencies, etc. I do agree that their comments are a bit repetitive though (and they don't like people with spaces or initials in their names--kept calling me athun instead of A.T. Hun). I think a bunch more research is in order :)

Just a note: cg_gibs 0 cuts down on the gore but gives a significant speed increase, especially in the heat of battle when every fps counts. Try it, you'll like it.

The Master comments: Okay, A.T. got all long-winded on us here. Q3ATD frippin ROCKS. Period. Okay, maybe amplify that rocks to 747-takeoff-volumes.

Unreal Tournament Gold

According to Blues News, Unreal Tournament has gone gold. They're saying store dates of Friday, which is just incredible. Good Job Epic :-)

A.T. adds: Excellent! After two really boring days in a row, a really exciting day on the gaming scene!

Voodoo4/5 Announcement

3dfx Europe issued this press release (Update: This link no longer works. To view the press release now, click here.) regarding their forthcoming Voodoo4/5 cards based on their new VSA-100 chip. Basically the cards will have from one to 32 (!) VSA-100s per card. Here's the product run-down, edited down from the press release.
The Voodoo4 4500 will be available in both PCI and AGP versions, and will feature a single VSA-100 processor and 32 MB of graphics memory. The boards, which render two fully featured pixels per clock, will deliver between 333 and 367 megatexels/megapixels per second fill rates and are expected to be priced at $179.99*.

The Voodoo5 5000 PCI will have dual VSA-100 processors and 32 MB of total graphics memory. The Voodoo5 5000 PCI board, rendering four fully featured pixels per clock, will deliver between 667 and 733 megatexels/megapixels per second fill rates and is expected to be priced at $229.99*.

The Voodoo5 5500 AGP will feature dual VSA-100 processors and 64 MB of total graphics memory. 64 MB of memory allows for higher resolutions and pixel depths with full-scene anti-aliasing and T-Buffer effects enabled, along with more memory available for texture storage. The board, which renders four fully featured pixels per clock, will deliver between 667 and 733 megatexels/megapixels per second fill rate and is expected to be priced at $299.99*.

The flagship product of the VSA-100 architecture, the Voodoo5 6000 AGP, will feature quad VSA-100 processors and 128 MB of graphics memory. It will be the first consumer graphics product to break the one billion pixel per second fill rate barrier. The Voodoo5 6000 AGP, which renders eight fully featured pixels per clock, will deliver between 1.33 and 1.47 gigatexels/gigapixels per second fill rate. It is expected to be priced at $599.99*.
Note: the Voodoo4 will NOT have any of the T-Buffer technology (full-scene anti-aliasing, etc.). In order to get the gigapixel fill-rate they were talking about, you'll have to drop $600 NEXT MARCH! What's up with that?

Looks like these will be nice boards and probably faster than what we have now, but they aren't going to be enough to get 3dfx to leapfrog NVIDIA, IMO.

Q3DemoTest Bot Commands

While you're downloading the demo, head on over to the Shugashack and check out the list of Q3DemoTest bot commands. It looks as if the bots have quite the vocabulary and pretty high intelligence. Looks like people who fancy themselves as team leaders will have to do a lot of binds to get all those commands pre-programmed. sCary doesn't say if there is a bot command menu a la Unreal Tournament.

New GLSetup

To celebrate the release of the Q3DemoTest, a new version of GLSetup has been released. What is GLSetup? It's a handy utility that automagically updates your 3D card's OpenGL drivers to the latest version. No more scouring the web for the latest drivers!

Q3DemoTest Issues

Christian Antkow updated his .plan with the following list of bugs found in the DemoTest. Here's the scoop:
Ok, known issues so far;Zzzz.....

Quake 3 DemoTest is Out!

Check the Quake 3 Arena DemoTest page with more information and the "official" mirror. Blue also has a list of mirrors here, not to mention the mirrors that are FilePlanet.

Q3A Model Shots at Stomped

Redwood has posted three more shots of some new models in Quake III Arena: Daemia (same model as Major, different skin), Grunt (Quake II Marine), and Stripe (Quake II Marine, different skin). Check them out!

It's stupid late. I'm going to bed.

Pondering the Imponderable

OK, it's Monday morning now and I'm staying up late to try to snag a copy of a not-quite-official demo. Seems to me I need a life. At least I've got my tape of Godzilla vs. Mothra (the newer version) to watch. :)

Sunday, November 14, 1999

A Little While Yet . . .

Stomped reported a comment that id's Christian Antkow made on IRC about 45 minutes ago. He said that it would be at least couple of hours before the Q3DemoTest comes out. Stay tuned . . .

Todd H on Q3DemoTest

Todd Hollenshead, id's CEO, updated his .plan with more news on the forthcoming Q3DemoTest. Here's a snip:
As Graeme indicated, this is a preliminary release. We are retaining the prohibition on physical media distribution until we release the final or "gold" demo. That means that magazines will NOT be allowed to distribute this version of the demo on coverdisks. This is marked all over the test, however I would appreciate it if all of the Quake 3 and game site webmasters that are mirroring or covering the release would lend me a hand and make sure our friendly neighborhood game and computer magazines understand this.

Rest assured, we will allow physical media distribution of the final demo, once it is released, but not yet.
Hear that computer gaming mags? Don't put the Q3DemoTest on a CD! Otherwise Mr. H might have to send a couple of guys named Vito over to "explain" it to you.

Q3DemoTest Information

The major gaming news sites are getting reloaded to death right now. We'll try to get a list of mirrors up as soon as it is available. FWIW, most of the .plan information in my previous posting was from about two hours ago. Hopefully soon! Hopefully Sandpiper will hold up better than Gigex did with the UT Demo!

According to Redwood, the folks at id will be using the feedback from this DemoTest to make the final tweaks before the game goes gold. He also mentioned that Major and Daemia are the same model and Grunts and Stripe are the same model, just different skins for each. So while there are four new characters, there are "only" two new models.

Q3DemoTest Tonight!

Put your modem on full-scale Defcon 5 alert kids! The official Quake 3 Arena demo (more correctly, the demo-test) should be released tonight! Thus spake John Carmack:
The demo test is built. It should go up in a couple hours if nothing explodes.

Mac and linux builds won't be out tonight.
Graeme Devine added the following:
Quake 3 Arena demo test should be out tonight. Watch the skies!

Just so we're all sure. This isn't the general demo. If all goes well we'll upload the general demo in a few days.

The demo contains four maps (q3dm1, q3dm7 (q3test1), q3dm17 (q3test2) & q3tourney2 (q3tourney) and six characters (Sarge, Visor, Major, Grunt, Daemia, & Stripe). Bots are in there on five difficulty settings (from "I can win!" to "nightmare!").
Christian Antkow threw in his two cents too:
Ok. For the curious, it's looking like... 11/14/99 07:34p 52,123,258 q3DemoTEST.exe

We're doing final testing now. Sandpiper has been called and they are aware that we're planning on a release tonight. The file will simultaneously be made available on our FTP site (heh) and Sandpipers distribution network through

Ok Quake Community... Lets show Sandpiper what we're made of and really stress out their network =)

This appears then to be a "test" of the demo, just to make sure there are no more show-stopping bugs. More details to follow!

Slow day-site info

Well, today has been mega-slow (along with the whole weekend), so I've begun working on a new feature for The Haus. I'm going to try to pull together a dictionary of lingo spoken in the game world. Important stuff like leetspeak, gone gold, etc. I've got a couple ideas, but if you have anything you'd like to contribute, please E-mail me!

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