Chris Taylor is back (TA, Sup.Commander)

Discussion in 'Unrelated Discussion' started by emarkus, September 18, 2017.

  1. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    I really think you guys are all missing his massive hints towards it being vs-AI for the most part (if not altogether).
  2. mikeyh

    mikeyh Post Master General

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    Off topic response to the live game / replay viewer.

    My long term stretch goal was to port the PA client engine to Metal 2 on iOS so that live games / replays could be viewed on any modern iPhone or iPad using a free app.

    ie not a playable cross over or simplified version ... just a way to extend PA's reach to mobile devices even for people who did not play PA on the desktop.

    My medium term stretch goal was a free ARKit app of the PA commander models walking around in interactive space that could be extended to other units like Titans. ie fun free marketing of PA that might be achievable.

    The big limitation for an engine port was RAM for planet generation and then accumulated history. The history server would need to stream and use flash storage instead of RAM. There would also be no UI mods and a fixed UI.

    A modern iOS device has the CPU and GPU performance for a basic client especially the new A11 bionic with Apple GPU which benchmarks higher than a Kaby Lake Core i5.

    It would be a battery life killer.
  3. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    What hints? If there were any I missed all of them entirely.

    You really have to give me access to that time machine you're using to think something like that is realistic :D
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  4. mikeyh

    mikeyh Post Master General

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    That was my long term stretch goal... not even remotely possible with my current skill set. The ARKit app of commanders would have been within my reach next year.

    A client engine viewer is becoming technically feasible and I think you'll be surprised at what will be possible in the next 2-3 years on an iOS device. You could do a lot now with 4GB RAM on an iPad Pro using last years CPU / GPU.

    The new A11 bionic CPU/GPU was a 3 year development cycle and the first version of an internally developed Apple GPU that already significantly outperforms Imagination's PowerVR designs to the point where we are at i5 CPU / GPU performance. Next years iPad Pro will be another big jump with an A12 based on a TSMC 7nm process.

    https://browser.geekbench.com/ios-benchmarks

    The challenges on mobile are battery life and input options which is why you see dumbed down versions of desktop games.

    I'm also a little skeptical of how seamless cross over between desktop and mobile would work in a full RTS.
  5. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    this part


    something that's accessible in this way and that's :
    • a more demanding versions that delivers a AAA experience on the PC
    • a "dumbed down version": E.G. probably only icons and no simpro on phone
    HAS to be vs AI for the simple reason that conversion of the battle data HAS to happen to make vase B hold the liquid from vase A :

    the simpro data makes for different results.

    so in effect even if it's quasi-instantaneous there would be a pause game and a change of engine which from the VS ai point of view is pretty tolerable the repercussions on engagements results upon "unpausing" in the new engine could theoretically be very minor but would definitely be considered "unfair" from a competitive point of view not to mention the pause and how long it would last for the other player is not the type of experience he's talking about.

    So it's available everywhere whenever .......eeeeeeexcept while your sparing partner is changing device.


    There is two more possibilities :

    no simpro across all "engines" in which case the device switch does not affect ingame results nor does it pause.

    But if you listen to the whole conference you can tell that Chris Taylor basicaly sees himself as the "simpro man" so I doubt it.

    and it could be that somehow he thinks he can get his devs to fit simpro on a cellphone which .... I am actually willing to believe is a mistake CT is capable of
    Last edited: September 19, 2017
  6. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    He says you can play on different devices. Why would that hint at single player?
  7. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    read ahead in my post
  8. stuart98

    stuart98 Post Master General

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    If it doesn't even have MP then that's even less reason to be excited about it.
  9. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    I never said that either. I just think the "switching" feature won't be available if you started the game on either device as a mp match.

    but then again it makes sense that he'd want to make the game SP-focused to market it to the masses and make it "hero-driven" and with more focus on story.
  10. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    He spoke of the project being rather small. Like he works on it from home, next to his pottery thing with people from all over the world. You won't get AAA anything at all with this, on no platform.
    I'd guess the PC version itself will be simple enough so that even a smartphone could mostly run it, making the main issue the interface.
    Think graphics not much better than TA. Add some server side driven game state/simulation and you could implement a seamless switch between devices. With all the devices being just "stupid" display clients. Although I still don't get why anybody would want to play an RTS on a smartphone.

    Well or any game more complex than candy crush for that matter...

    I've never seen that term before. You're talking about the processing of the simulation I guess?
    PA shows you can do that on servers in the cloud. It eats memory because it stores all the history, but I'd wager if you cut down on game complexity (2d instead of 3d for once) and have no option to watch the past in a picture in picture while playing in the present you could push those requirements down massively.

    Yeah that is true. However even in vs AI I would find it very, very absurd to do this kind of switch.
    So I'd rather assume this is about some form of MMORTS stuff.
    Think Galactic War with the option to manage random gw meta game stuff from all devices or even play from all devices.

    Thinking further the main wtf about multiplayer would be letting PC players play matches vs smartphone players.
    Gonna own them hard...

    You can totally run something like Total Annihilation or Starcraft I on a modern day smartphone.

    So yeah. My bet is on some form of meta game, in spirit of galactic war, that is meant with this "seamless switch". It just makes no sense at all to switch a full blown RTS from pc to smartphone as you go. Not even for vs AI. I mean think about when that switch happens.
    A moment in time where I am playing the RTS but need to leave my computer. Leaving my computer involves walking away somewhere and whatnot. His example is "going to a meeting". No way in hell can he expect people to be able to do full RTS playing while standing up and going to a meeting.
    Doing browser-game like metagaming similar to GW on the other hand seems realistic.


    I'd say that is the main big problem. As long as a mobile device can't go on full load for a longer time there is little point in playing on it. If you're next to a power source chance is you're at home, where you might as well play on a real PC.
    Last edited: September 20, 2017
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  11. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    I know but you get the idea. better version on the PC.

    He was explicit about that

    because it seems obvious to him that people won't enjoy "a phone experience" on the big screen.

    also you're really ditching SimPro quite fast there. remember who this is. I don't think he'd live with himself if his RTS didn't have it.
    show me it then I'll believe it.

    I get what you're saving the processing power is "theoratically" there. except it's not that simple. CPU and GPU working in conjunction makes for an incredibly powerful beast and so does better instruction sets. (and I think that for SimPro those instruction sets matter a ton)

    despite the better operations per second then PCs of those days phones still don't entirely bypass them
    Last edited: September 20, 2017
  12. Clopse

    Clopse Post Master General

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    My first PC came with total annihilation, pentium 200 and a whopping 32mb of ram, 6mb 3xfx voodoo2. 56k internet. And TA online ran smooth enough unless someone tried to call your house.

    Looking at it now, was pretty amazing at what he was able to achieve.
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  13. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    Seriously explain to me where this word is coming from. Field Service Management?

    Also as clopse said TA runs on a potato by modern standards.
    By those benchmarks mikeyh posted the IphoneX is in fact faster than my tablet pc on which I play Starcraft 2 (!) sometimes. Well at least CPU wise. No idea how to read that benchmark to compare gpu perf. But if you're doing more simple graphics that won't matter.

    I could not find somebody trying TA on android, but there appears to be an emulator that can run Direct X based Windows games on phones from a few years ago. Maybe if somebody who reads this has too much time: Try out TA. I could only find a video with Starcraft 1.
    TA may do a bit more physics stuff and require a little bit performance, but the difference is so small I doubt it matters at all.

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  14. Gorbles

    Gorbles Post Master General

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    Important things r.e. mobile benchmarks:

    iOS throttle CPU to prevent overheating (Android do not to the same extent), so theoretical benchmarks are still unfortunately theoretical.

    You're not going to get the same performance as something with a dedicated GPU with an ARM chipset or similar.
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  15. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    That's a good point.
    So I guess no Starcraft 2 on a smartphone just yet. But something like TA? I'd still wager: yes.
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  16. tatsujb

    tatsujb Post Master General

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    alright good points all around (blown away by that starcraft on a tablet vid) :

    but you see what I mean : CT HAS to be conscious of the fact that if he's just making single version of his game and marketing it to all platforms he's not doing anything revolutionary and in fact it has been done before and when it WAS done : the phone market took all the glory and the PC port was barely used at all because like he basically sais : "who wants to play a phone game on a PC screen?"

    So at this point it really is a question of how much he manages to fit on the phone version and if that includes SimPro (it's shorter to say let me have this :p ) or not.

    about "SimPro" as a term : I dunno, ...people in the FAF community are pretty comfortable with this shorthand for "simulated projectiles" and I've used it toms here and seeing it being used here as well as within the TA, SupCom2 and Ashes community. ...why not here as well. shorhands are handy.
  17. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    TIL
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  18. mwreynolds

    mwreynolds Well-Known Member

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  19. cola_colin

    cola_colin Moderator Alumni

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    Doesn't do all the work on the phone. Though sure looks impressive.
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  20. mikeyh

    mikeyh Post Master General

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    I think you'll find it's the opposite between iOS and Android devices in the multi-core sustained load tests.

    All passively cooled (fanless) mobile devices including tablets and most laptops with or without active cooling (fans) will thermal throttle.

    It also depends heavily on ambient temperature and you'll see a big difference between user testing in 15°C vs 30°C environments with passively cooled (fanless) devices. A device with active cooling (fans) will be more resilient to high ambient temperatures. The surface area of larger devices also makes a big difference with thermal dissipation.

    Most of the Geekbench tests will trigger thermal throttling on passively cooled devices so that is factored in. There is a minimum two second delay between tests to avoid thermal throttling impacting other tests.

    Sadly some Android vendors are still trying to cheat the benchmarks even after AnandTech and others have repeatedly shamed them each year since 2013.

    https://www.tomsguide.com/us/iphone-8-benchmarks-fastest-phone,review-4676.html

    Hopefully AnandTech will release mobile benchmarks this year.
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