Yes, and it doesn’t work for multiplayer without multiple server hosting. Which is what I’ve been told by experienced level designers, and am reading in UE4’s own documentation right now. Unless they are both horribly wrong, or am I completely misunderstanding (which I never rule out).
Any reading material? I don’t mind learning more. But, as far as I know, experienced, and have been told by multiple sources, this is not the case with the engine used in 4.15. And again, you can test this yourself using the dev kit. Edges of the map break down, in particular to the far east.
Furthermore, do you honestly feel that putting two maps on the same one server, even if it could reasonably be done (time, cost, manpower, player willingness to wait for no updates for an extended period, and it could actually be done period), wouldn’t be detrimental to the performance of the servers? Servers which let players build whatever they want in just about any size, shape, and location with thousands of unique placeables, thralls, and pets? Because if so, we are going to have to agree to disagree there. This isn’t a static world, with ever evolving complex systems being added (and yet to be added). It’s fun to critically analyze that, but I guess it’s easier for most here to declare Funcom as evil and lazy (note I’m not saying that you specifically are saying that).
Yes, in a lot of aspects they did. And Funcom’s own Lead Designer (Alex) talked about that in December. He talked about how they had to take a lot of shortcuts due to money and time, and were knew to UE4 at the time. He even gives specific blueprint examples for modders to dig into to see examples of it. I fail to see why they should be demonized for knowing they made mistakes, and even admitting to those mistakes, and being human developers for that matter.
I’m not denying that you easily know more about this than I do from a tech and engine aspect. But I am (and have been) very tired of the “Funcom is an evil corporation” type of comment for every single breath Funcom takes.
Which is why I will once again be shortly returning to a complete silence from all forum mediums involving Conan Exiles. Far too much toxicity and blowing up over tiny little things like over the word “expansion.” (any other game not named Conan Exiles, and very few would complain) If they had done the exact opposite, did all the things you all are upset about (not carrying over existing characters to the new world), there would be even more people getting angry because people would have a pay to win advantage (Ark).
Sips coffee…Nice to see civil dialogues. Even when we challenge each other. This will be my last post as well on the CE forums…I swear. I told my daughter to also stop posting. Whether she does or not is her business. I swear she is more stubborn than I am! To be honest I was already done after our last foray into our balancing debate until my daughter asked me to look at @Multigun 's reply to her…she was miffed but also felt bad since she has a lot of respect for him as do I. @Croms_Faithful shout-out for another due legitimate respect on our behalf.
May as well drive the topic even further into the abyss. THIS IS related!
So another one of these Sunday Over Coffee posts with no TL:DR version. Read it or move on.
I get it and very much respect what you say here. The CE Forums are full of it. Still amazed Funcom lets a lot of it slide. I know sometimes I can come off as a curmudgeon but really I am a very No Grey Area person and a really nice person. Some of my employees really don’t like it when I shove a list of things that are wrong in their lap and tell them to stop what they are doing and fix them…rather directly. The Deer in the Headlights Look…well…if YOU did it right in the first place we would not be having this conversation. Do better work. By the way, write down what you want for lunch today on me.
Funcom is a company that is making and selling games. I admire that. In fact that is one of the avenues my company is trying to do. We already do ArchViz with great success (wish I could share) and Industrial Controls. In my designs everything works. Why? When we test something and there is an issue we document it and take care of it (usually right now…I don’t put up with it). It is a very bug free environment and yes it does take slightly longer to develop…as we go…but later it rewards heavily. I cannot personally risk the bad reputation that Funcom (and many others since this is a Funcom Forum I will not mention) get from pushing out buggy games that may be fixed during some future date…maybe. Players continue to purchase this c.r.a.p. and it really leaves a poor taste in my mouth…and many others. This is unacceptable behavior. Period.
I am from the days when yes there were bugs in game but they were really small and the Devs simply did a really great job of Design/QA (there were exceptions of course…usually tied to design time constraints by the publishers). There was no internet…it was PDFs, Recipes, and Wiki mainly…so updates were Disks and the occasional Zip file that took ages to download. Games had to be polished because reputation is king. I take the same stance. Polish the systems and the game or anything will run well. And in fact it (mine) does.
I think that should answer a few things…
Look up WORLD_MAX constant in the UE4 Source Code. UE4 used to have 500k uu (1uu = 1cm, so 500,000cm = 5000m = 5km) in there but currently it is 20km x 20km (+/- 10km). This is really close to the PhysX by nVidia precision limits. See post #10 from the 2014 UE4 Engine Dev post then later in this topic…some good/real information.
Links and info from the UE4 forums here:
You folks can do your own homework on why PhysX has limitations from the Origin. I think many of you already understand why.
Yes, in fact I do. I have 15 separate landscapes each at 10km x 10km (1km edging is non-accessible padding so playable is 8km x 8km). When we are on separate maps only the objects on the particular map are rendered. Basically the Server knows which map the Client is on and only updates that content. The Client then renders and updates what it needs. In game chat can be replicated via a Global Chat Tab. In basic terms the Server Maps are a big If then Statement from Server to the Clients.
We began using L3DT to make HMs but designed our own Landscape Tools with small brushes to do it by Artist’s Hand within UE4 and it is better…my daughter and I are both Landscape Artist’s (I have 3 but need 6…wish I could afford more!). Each of these landscapes have a triggering system in place that tells the Player which Map/Landscape needs to load when they approach the transition edges. We do the same thing for Doors and Caves. There is a small loading screen which is really fast then the Player continues on from there. The maps are really large but it is not 100% seamless for performance and complexity issues. Side fact…this system came from my NWN1 & 2 systems from 2003-07.
So back to the question…could Conan Exiles have another map in their current game? Yes definitely. Teleport by some means to/between maps. Can the existing map be expanded? No, definitely not with World Composition without a lot of pain.
Does teleporting between maps make sense from a game play perspective? Not really since the player crashes on the isle prior to coming to the Exile Lands (east of Anshan near Kosala is my theory). So essentially this new DLC is in fact a new game.
I have tested UE4 World Composition in Multiplayer and it can work. The caveat here is Epic did not design the Replication with this in mind. I will explain how it works and it will be very clear as to why designers stay away from it. I did the exact same thing in Unity 4 & 5 and it was handled very poorly. UE4 one could argue it might work.
So a player (Client) approaches the edge of the map (playable area) the XY 0,0 is Re-Centered to the new location…could be thousands of meters from the previous. This idea is very applicable to a Space Type Environment. The Server has to track which Zone they are in then reference that that is their Current 0,0. A different player could/would have a different 0,0. The issue is that currently the Server has no way to know if 0,0 is here or there. World Composition does this behinds the scenes but is not replicated.
To get this to work a UID Prefixer (Grid like A01 to Z24 works) has to be attached to the Transform location of every object in the game as a prefix to let the Server know who is where. Player goes to Grid A01_ and everything in that particular Landscape/World is allowed to be rendered on the Client. The Client will only render the Distance and View Frustum as normal. Clients are organized by Prefix on the Server and it all works. Again, I tested it with the UE4 Source Code and it can work. In actual practice though so many things are tied to the Transforms in very strange ways that knocking out all the bugs would be very painful. Also the lighting gets really cumbersome to work with. IF Epic ever works on a game of this style the foundation is already there and it will work out of the box since they use what we use for the most part.
For this reason I elected for a Grid but Separate Maps type of system. I also want to keep with the latest UE4 version which also means our C++ is super easy to manage during conversions and almost nothing breaks.
For those that are curious. Here is a great video showing World Composition and how to design within it. Not to worry it is a very easy watch less than 30min. The light bulbs will also see what current issues exist with it as well.
World Composition for Space Games (UE4 Tutorial)
I will answer for her. Yes but I limit to 32 and my design is based upon players setting up their own dedicated LAN servers. Much like NWN1 & 2 are/were. It is true RPG with Multiplayer…Old School.
UE4 out of the box has no real hard cap on number of Clients that can log into the UE4 Server. The real issue for UE4 (most other engines have this issue as well) is Epic’s Replication Design is very aggressive because of the 1st Person Shooter base it came from. It updates fast and hard to reduce as much latency as possible. So through testing by many, 253 is impossible, 100 is a really difficult to get to number…70 is a more reasonable number but is heavily game dependent. With a true RPG style game the number is a lot lower…which is why I hard cap at 32 players/GMs (Skyrim for a design example with multiplayer might not even get 16 for a max because of all the non-static physics enable items…4 players work though!!). CE is definitely a MMO (Lots of Servers Design Style) but not a RPG, however, server cap should be 30 in CE because of how the game does things and was designed. My opinion.
Correct mostly. The Landscape/World is defined by this Height Map (XYZ). The Height Map is made by In UE4 Tools or can be imported from a 3rd party tool like WM/L3DT to sculpt the Landscape/World. The UE4 in engine then can further modify that/those landscapes which also changes the Height Map (automatically generated in UE4 when painting). This height data defines the landscape collision (is used to prevent/calculate Undermeshing for example) as well as the XYZ of anything that is applied to the landscape…including the motion items and physics. They are all tied together. Some Maps/Levels/Scenes can have no Height Map (ie Dungeons, Private Buildings).
The old map spent years in development. It’s tripled it’s original size and has had constant additions to it. People will always still play the old map. It’s the flagship, the classic. Not to mention they’ve already said that any sort of mechanical changes to the game will apply to both. They’re not just tossing it into a dumpster and moving on, but at the same time it is a full map with a lot going on. There isn’t much more they can do without cramming
This is all going by theory reading specs out of a pdf. Lets go by actual real Conan Exile Dedicated Server Experience.
With no one online, I see a server taking 9.36GB for a single map. The server has to load all of the assets needed and run all of the NPCs across the entire map.
Now the great thing (well only great for this example, not so great in practice) is the server runs on a single core. So most CPUs should be able to run two maps. The issue is RAM and getting them to talk to each other.
When you run a clustered server, this is easy. However the Dedicated Server software which included as a tool on steam. Is not setup for that. It is setup for the layman to download, click launch, and have a server literally out of the box at home.
That same tool is used by server hosts to for us to rent our own dedicated servers using the UIless Steam API.
So to run two maps, you need a minimum of a multicore CPU (everyone has access to this, except in one case which I will bring up), at least 20GB of RAM, a really good connection with a decent upstream (gonna have to double this one too).
Many high end users could probably boast those requirements. That isn’t where the issue here is. The issue is dedicated server hosts don’t have the ability to VM that all out. So instead of $18/month for a dedicated 20 slot server. You’re looking at $200-300/month minimum. That isn’t lucrative for them.
And there are some people that are going to hate me bringing this up again. But Funcom has this pesky agreement with Gportal. Gportal has agreed to VM out multiple servers for Funcom to use as Officials. They are allocated the minimum (the bare minimum as players on those servers will attest), to run those servers. The subdivided sets are not capable of running two maps (Some would argue they can’t run one map).
So sure, Unreal Engine 4 can run a MMORPG, with a huge map where a town equals the size of the Exiled Lands with 7500 concurrent players.
Gportal can’t. Well they won’t is the better word for it. Most player’s computers can’t. And its quite expensive for players to have that available. So what is the point of doing it? You’d have only a half a dozen servers up that would be capable of running that, and none of them would be an official server.
As much as I’d like them to, Funcom will not develop for single digit server host renters. Its not happening.
Yeah but on private servers you can’t always play the way you want to because the admin will just ban you if he/she doesn’t like the way you play so I seriously doubt more people will migrate to the private servers(knowing that)
I can kinda see it coming, the expansion won’t make the money they’re hoping for so they’ll just start polishing up the new content and dulling the old trying to manipulate the community into buying the “expansion”. I predict the new armors will probably be stronger and better than anything in game now, again trying to force a purchase. Or better yet, maybe their new anti-undermeshing program will just “accidentally “ wipe out everyone’s bases and it will be “oops, sorry, but it’s really your fault for placing foundations on cliff sides” and then hopefully when you have no further attachment to your old game you’ll buy their now over-priced “expansion”…
Kinda reminds me of what happened with Bethesda after Skyrim and the first Fallout
I have no idea what 95% of what you just said means, but find it very interesting. Since you mentioned Skyrim being possibly able to support multiplayer, have you heard of "Skyrim together"? They seem to be doing really well, aside from their rather terrible syncing between players
Thankyou krix_ost! And I assure you that the respect completely mutual here on my part. That discussion between you Multi was one of the most fascinating and educational ones I have had the good fortune of reading while here on the forums. Sadly, much of what you guys cover is lost on me, suffice to say that I know its value. It is jusy so utterly outside of my ballpark, and I fail so miserably to comprehend the vast majority of it. Nonetheless, conversations such as these give the ordinary forum users a chance to peer through the looking glass and see the ships engines in action. And frankly I hope to see more of such discussions into the future. And I hope that you and your lovely daughter Rohi continue to remain an active part of our vibrant community.
Ummmmm…what… Serialization of data between client and server already exists. All you’re effectively doing is moving your character to the server (memory) and transfering at most your inventory packet between them both. In fact, tbh, the data wouldn’t likely have changed as much as people think given the backwards compatibility of the existing DLC’s on the new map and vice versa.
What am I not seeing here that makes this concept “complex”…
I see what @CodeMage was saying though. There may be programming or networking issues that are not able to be seen by us on the client end or even the server end. I would hope that it would prove to be possible though as it would make the game story on going. Though could some of the islands “fresh” with no outside characters so that people who enjoy that could continue to do so.
Yes, EQ (and WoW and virtually every other large scale MMO) add zones, but it is not running on “a server”. What you see as a server is actually a cluster of many servers connected together, and I imagine that’s way beyond the scope of what CE will ever be.
I’ll add that those server clusters also do some relatively complicated stuff with load balancing and instancing. As far as I know, the CE server is essentially a single threaded background app and as we know, instancing isn’t even a thing in CE.