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[Freeware] Hades 2

 
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:36 pm     Post subject: [Freeware] Hades 2 Reply with quote

I've stumbled upon this game a while ago when browsing this site. Essentially, it's an oldschool-style 2.5D FPS from a Brazilian studio called Espaco Informatica. Hades 2 was released somewhere in 1999, and is said to have enjoyed popularity in its home country. However, it seems to remain otherwise largely unknown. In 2009, the developers have made Hades 2 freeware to celebrate the 10th anniversary of its release.

The engine is quite comparable to the late 2.5D engines like Build. It uses high-resolution sprites, slopes, outdoor areas etc. etc., but of course for the time of its release it was already quite dated (which might have negatively affected its popularity). The sci-fi/horror plot is nothing special, but the game features a variety of weapons, enemies and hazards, all packed in a dynamic, interactive world. It has also reminded me of the Marathon games somewhat. At any rate, the game has an excellent retro look to it, and it has an overall good, quality design.

Hades 2 gameplay video at YouTube
Hades 2 Wikipedia article
Hades 2 official site
Hades 2 screenshots
Hades 2 official full download
Download Hades 2 Demo
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dosraider
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:45 am     Post subject: So much energy in the build engine.... shame, shame, shame ! Reply with quote

Hmmmm, remember this one.

One enormous error: build engine.
They should have developed that game on the unreal engine (Unreal 1 to be more precise).
With the gameplay/level design they were able to put in that obsolete (yes indeed, obsolete, sorry to all die hard fans of that engine) build engine it would have been a game that easily could be compared to the original Unreal.

And before someone says "but you have to pay for such license" , no , not really, you can develop a complete game on the unreal engine and release it as freeware mod. Of course you can't include the Unreal game itself, but that's hardly a problem.

Or eventually using the Half-life (1) engine would also been better, but I personally prefer the unreal engine. Same remarks as for the unreal engine, just look around and try some of the mods developed for those engines, some really good stuff, and I mean 'REALLY' good stuff.

Unreal engine, Half-life, Quake2 (or bloody even Quake) completely surpass the build engine.
You get so much more possibilities to develop the gameplay.

..... hmmmmmm, long post, time to cut the crap.
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Dogbreath
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 18, 2012 11:55 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll be honest, as much as I dislike "graphics whores", this game just looks *ugly*. I can play the original Half Life (which came out a year before) and still appreciate it, or Unreal, or even Doom, and have no problem with the relatively primitive graphics, because they're quite beautiful games despite that. But this game just looks bland and boxy and boring, and the screenshot alone depress me. Honestly, it's the same reason I never really liked the later episodes of the original Quake - they took the most advanced FPS engine of the time and made a game where everything is drab, brown, grey, and dingy. Look at what Half-Life achieved with the same engine 2 years later. This is actually still a problem with modern FPSes, especially the "realistic" ones. Someone needs to remind these game developers that there are more colors out there than brown.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2012 9:23 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Dogbreath wrote:
I can play the original Half Life (which came out a year before) and still appreciate it, or Unreal, or even Doom, and have no problem with the relatively primitive graphics, because they're quite beautiful games despite that.

(emphasis added)

I will certainly not argue about the quality of the game in the OP, as it is obviously more of a curiosity that anything else (I'm generally interested in 2.5D FPS games, regardless of their artistic value). However, I find the implicit logic in your words somewhat strange (please do not misunderstand me, I mean no offence!), because the way you put it suggests to me that a game's artistic merit can be affected by the existence of other, newer games that utilize more advanced technology. This is not the first time I encounter this logic, and it seems to be based on the reasoning that newer and higher quality graphics indeed may make the old stuff seem pale in comparison. However, the point I would like to make here as a counterargument is that the intrinsic artistic value of a game cannot be affected by the fact that there are newer and possibly better technologies that produce different, technologically advanced graphics. The intrinsic artistic value, in my opinion, is something that does not change at all - only the perception of it may change, for example, in comparison with something else. Therefore there can be "good-looking" and "ugly" games in any epoch of a genre's development, depending on the artistry of what was done with available resources and technologies (compare Blake Stone: Aliens of Gold and Depth Dwellers for example). However, I cannot accept the idea that newer and more advanced quality graphics can take something away from older games, or our enjoyment thereof.

In conclusion, I'd like to emphasize that (a) none of the above is in defence of the game in question and (b) since I'm talking about the implications in your words, I might have misunderstood you and as the result address the points that you did not make, for which I apologize.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 19, 2012 12:45 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Definitely misunderstood - I was saying it's not about the graphics engine, it's what they do with it. Doom is far more primative than, say, Quake, but IMO it's far prettier. Going further back, Dragon Wars, for example, is only 16 color EGA still frames, but is still remarkably attractive. This game, OTOH, just looks ugly to me.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2012 2:52 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Dogbreath wrote:
Definitely misunderstood - I was saying it's not about the graphics engine, it's what they do with it.

Yeah, I totally agree with that Happy Sorry about the misunderstanding, it's probably that I've run into various statements about old games not being good enough on the basis of outdated graphics too many times Happy

This discussion has also lead me to think not only about the artistic merits of various games as opposed to the technology that is used, but also about the "unused" features that may be present in the engine but never got used by the developers (with fans and modders from the community often discovering and making use of such features later). E.g. I can't remember a single level in Duke Nukem 3D that makes use of pushable objects (my memory may not be perfect on this though), while the Build engine clearly allows for those, as seen in the earlier Powerslave.

There's also another thing concerning the possibilities of game engines, which is probably best illustrated by an example. The engine of Ultima Underworld that allegedly inspired John Carmack to write the Catacomb 3-D engine allows floor and ceiling textures, height differences, sloped floors and diminishing lighting, all of which are absent in Catacomb 3-D and Wolfenstein 3-D. However, Carmack's engine has much lower system requirements, being able to run on a wider array of computer configurations. This makes one wonder what possibilities in game engine technology could have existed but were in fact never explored for not being cost-effective.
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 12:43 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

MrFlibble wrote:
....This makes one wonder what possibilities in game engine technology could have existed but were in fact never explored for not being cost-effective.

.... or never explored/used because the were the cause of game crashes, bugs, HOM effects ..... a lot of things can go wrong in a game engine, an example:

Remember Daikatana? Initial developments were for the Quake (1) engine but soon they switched to the much more powerful Quake2 engine.
The Quake2 engine was exploited to the outer limits of his possibilities, and yes, it went completely wrong. Bugs all around, and even more bugs.

The example of Daikatana is a bit simplified, there were more tech probs, but it gives an idea of 'using the all features' in a game engine causing a lot of problems. Just take a look at what Daikatana was compared to Quake2, and you'll see a lot of features pushed to the limits, features that were never used in Quake2. But: Quake2 was steady as a rock. (kinda ...... )

Ah crap long post again, headache now.

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