bzhykt the intro

Story

I remember ReJ calling me and saying “do you know what’s going to happen after 2 weeks?“. “No”, I said. “Mekka&Symposium’02! And we’re going to be there!“.

So we (I, ReJ, simple, OneHalf) decided to write an intro for it. It was 10 or 11 days left. We’ve never written an intro before. Had no artists, no musicians, no idea, no tools, no code. Cool!

Everything went well, except that we had no music. We did some weird tracks in the tracker, but, alas, we’re not musicians :( And, as sound playing stuff was delayed for some reason, we didn’t even manage to play our “sound” normally… (in the end we found that we need to delta-encode sound samples, but it was too late :)).

We ended up with a rather cool-looking-toonish-style renderer, the terrain, some weird-looking L-system trees and some spiders (boids/flocks stuff). Not much and no particular idea…

It was shown at Mekka&Symposium’2002 in Germany. Ended up somewhere in the middle :(

Technical stuff

  • Coding. We did with straight C++ (not C), with only several lines of asm code (_ftol, fsin and the like). In the end, even some templates and virtual functions were used, though the intro only reached 35kb :)
  • Renderer. Basically: render into small (64x64) texture, read it back (yes, it’s not HW-friendly), and then draw billboards on screen, depending on the colors of the texture. This way we get “painterly” look. Additionally, draw several passes of hatching-style stuff (this part requires dot3 on the card) to get the edges and the shades.
  • Terrain. The terrain is of quite large resolution (320x320 - that’s ~200k triangles), and we needed it to be drawn 3-4 times. So we partitioned it into fixed “terrain blocks” and used simple frustum culling on them. Terrain is generated from several simple Perlin noises.
  • Spiders. OneHalf, the fan of boids, did the spiders during one sleepless night. The spiders run around using some flocking behaviour, correctly move their legs, damage each other, etc.

Get it!

You can get it through scene.org.

Better turn off your speakers, because the sound is total crap. Have a decent videocard (GeForce2/Radeon or better) and DirectX8.1. Some folks reported they can’t run it, or it crashes, or it restarts the computer, or it displays garbage - so take care…

The look of bzhykt

Thumbnails, click for a larger shot. The last one isn’t from actual intro, it’s “bzhykt’s terrain with flat shading” :)