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This article is long overdue, mostly due to my attention being fixed on Hectic. ( Which is fine, thank you for not asking :p )
I’ve been running into a german shooter -.kkreiger for ages, so I decided to check it out.
.kkreiger is a 3D FPS with some decent action – you get to shoot alien(istic) monsters, keeping an eye on your health and ammo.
The game is short but entertaining and the graphics are at a DOOM3 standard – incredible, because here’s the kicker: its only 96kb.
Originating in the German demoscene, and developed by .theprodukkt, .kkreiger is undoubtedly the best (at the time) example
of the potential for procedurally generated content in video games, and also for packing complex information into smaller filesizes. A standard m3 soundtrack for a
game, usually, will run anywhere from 3 to 6 kb; whereas .kkreiger manages the whole deal by synthesizing music in real-time (eyebrows up, huh?).
Texture files on games take up a large chunk of storage – from 500 MB to 20 GB (GTA 4 anyone?) whereas this nifty game manages to pack about 300 MB of textures into just 96 KB.
Check out the screenshots below:
To be honest, this article is less of a ‘learning procedural generation’ than an example of what’s possible with procedural generation – but I have a feeling these amazing screens will convince even the skeptics among you. Procedural content generation is shaping up to be one of the holy grails of game development – from SPORE to MINECRAFT to .kkreiger, we’ve got some pretty impressive examples on our hands.
I don’t believe, however, that hit games will be entirely procedurally generated. Such games are not creative; they are more or less machine-based churned systems, like those random mazegen programs – impressive, but there’s not overall sense of meaning, of design, of art. But imagine the power of procedural content generation – such as in .kkreiger -wedded to standard game design. The calculated surface are of Minecraft, for example, is about 8 TIMES THE SIZE OF THE EARTH’S SURFACE. What a Dragon Age, for example, could we build! Imagine Fallout 3 powered by this technology; the story, the narrative, fused with a gameworld that one could explore for months and months and never fully finish! What gameworlds, what universes we could build!
Over and out.
PS: Next article I’m gonna tackle the question of building auto-generated mazes in Game Maker. Untile then! 🙂