The Source Engine is a 3D game engine developed by Valve Corporation. Its unique features include a large degree of modularity and flexibility, an artist-driven, shader-based renderer, accurate lip sync and facial expression technology, and a powerful, efficient and completely network-enabled physics system.

The Source engine was first shown to the world by being the power-horse behind the hugely anticipated Half-Life 2 which was released in late 2004. Since then the Source Engine has been upgraded with the release of such titles as Half-Life 2: Lost Coast, Team Fortress 2 and the Left 4 Dead series to name a few.

Whilst it has been years since the release of the Source Engine they haven't yet unveiled a 'next-generation engine' as the Source engine is always updating and is just as relevant in the gaming world today if not more than when it debuted in 2004. It has been aided by the release of the free Source Development Kit (SDK) which include such features as HDR for developers to use in their projects. Hence the reasons stated we have yet to see 'Source Engine 2'.

On July 10th 2012, Valve released the 'Source Filmmaker' - a freeware client to allowed anyone to make movies inside the Source Engine. More information on the Source Filmmaker can be found here.

Below you can find a list of amazing features that the Source Engine boasts:

Renderer

  • Version 2.0 (and below) shaders, bump mapping, LOD on models and world
  • Author shaders with HLSL
  • Cube and environment mapping
  • Dynamic lights, vertex lighting and light maps, many light types including flickering, pulsing etc.
  • High-Dynamic Range lighting
  • Water with refraction and fresnel effects
  • Advanced particle system that can emit sprites or models
  • Projected shadows allow for a large number of characters per scene
  • Occluder entities for visibility blocking
  • Indoor/Outdoor environments
  • Deformable terrain
  • 3D skyboxes extend the horizon and add parallax on distant objects
  • Dynamically rendered organics (grass, trees etc)
  • Subdivision surfaces, diffuse & specular bump maps
  • Real-time radiosity lighting
  • Effects include but are not limited to: particles, beams, volumetric smoke, sparks, blood, environmental effects like fog and rain
  • Scalability
  • Dx6-Dx9 hardware supported

Materials System

  • Instead of traditional textures, Source defines sets of materials that specify what the object is made from and the texture used for that object. A material specifies how an object will fracture when broken, what it will sound like when broken or dragged across another surface, and what that object’s mass and buoyancy are. This system is much more flexible than other texture only based systems.
  • Materials can interact with objects or NPCs such as mud or ice for vehicles to slide/lose traction on.

Multiplayer Network Code

  • Time and gamer tested by millions of gamers around the world
  • Support for both LAN based multiplayer and Internet based multiplayer games
  • Prediction analysis for interpolating collision/hit detection
  • Optimizations for high-latency, high-packet loss 56k connections

Advanced Characters

  • Detailed and believable characters
  • Realistic eyes
  • Focus on player/object, not simply parallel views
  • Proper eye “bulge” for realistic eye reflections
  • Simulated musculature provides outstanding emotions, speech and body language
  • Language independent speech, characters can naturally speak in many languages
  • Skeletal/bone system for animation
  • Layered animation system can synthesize complex animations out of several pieces
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Blog RSS Feed Post news Report abuse Related News: Lost Story Dev.Log #2

About Lost Story: The Last Days of Earth with 4 comments by HopeLessCatE on Aug 27th, 2015

Introduction

Once again we greet you at the end of the month. The summer is coming to an end. Many of you are probably returning from vacations (or are still having their rest), but nevertheless today we are ready to please the fans of Lost Story and the Half-Life universe not only with a long speech, but with some new fresh media-content. And the topic for today is: criterias that we account for during the reveals of our screenshots, videos and music scores.

All aboard!

About our common problems

Many of you are probably interested about the reasons for our prolonged delays in news updates and what criterias we account for before releasing new media-content. This particular topic will be the first topic of our blog.

First of all, all of our media productions starting since 2013 has a certain quality rank that we've raised up due to our game being a whole new game in the Half-Life universe. By the "quality rank" we mean such aspects as the artistic part of the locations and it's "readiness" for release. For example, here are the new screenshots of our "Forest" location.



Secondly, each publicly demonstrated location is not created for screenshoting purposes only. The recent cancel of one of the most anticipated mods has become a great hit for Source modmaking in general. That stands for cancelling the mod itself and for it's content revealed to public. Most of their locations weren't just unconnected with each other, they were simply created for making just one screenshot. In other words, the biggest part of it's media-content was somewhat "fake-ish" and didn't really relate to the project itself. On the one hand, however, such unprofessional methods could be useful for the team for concepting purposes, but on the other hand it's deceiving for the public. We try to avoid such moments as much as possible. And so if some part of the content will not be included in the release version, it will be flagged as "concept" or "idea".

Combine factory [Concept Art]

Thirdly, we are keen to sticking to the canon. It means that we are really strict to our storytelling, as it must never create anything illogical or unreal for the original universe. We treat gaming elements the same, as they should be as close to canon as possible so it would not confuse the fans and players. Yes, the players will be learning new things about the universe during the progress of the game. They will become the witnesses of something unseen previously. But it won't mean seeing anything unreal for the Half-Life universe.

Our "rules" for news updates publishing are a little bit different. If we have nothing to share with the fans or if there's nothing we can show because it is not ready yet, we simply delay the release until, we have the necessary material to share with You.

Conclusion

In conclusion we would like to inform everyone that we are currently finishing the development of the core elements of gameplay and we will be sending a test build of the game for play testing to Valve! After that we will be ready to share some of the gameplay videos from the first chapter. :)

We are sure that our new combat system, companion control system and stealth gameplay possibilities will be appreciated by the employees of our favorite gaming company and they will give us the green light for finishing of the development and a soon release at Steam!


Quote:

And yes, this is the new name of our collective, which was approved by our members in the beginning of 2015. An unexpected surprise, isn't it?

Your mad hedgehogs in shades,
Rock Path Collective

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Post comment Comments  (300 - 310 of 331)
Shadow85 Online
Shadow85 Mar 9 2009 says:

How can I activate a mod through Steam?

+1 vote     reply to comment
emMKai
emMKai Feb 26 2009 says:

loving the source engine!
i wonder - if you made a really good game with this, would Valve possibly put it on Steam as a download?

+1 vote     reply to comment
mike_app
mike_app Feb 13 2009 says:

come on HL2 EP3 we cant wait any longer! Whens the black mesa TC being released too :P

+2 votes     reply to comment
NinjaDuck
NinjaDuck Dec 31 2008 says:

Well, you can get SDK by doing this: Steam>View>Tools>Source SDK

+1 vote     reply to comment
kramersize
kramersize Nov 9 2008 says:

Source is the best, Lets develope some blue tooth tech or something so we can put on sensors on our bodies and be able to move in Gmod or maybe any source game, I am interested in making Gmod vids and think it would be fun to be able to pose and move the characteres with my own movement.

+2 votes     reply to comment
pfannkuchen_gesicht
pfannkuchen_gesicht Dec 3 2008 replied:

have you heard something about the WiiMod?

0 votes     reply to comment
Nokiaman
Nokiaman Jan 21 2009 replied:

Wiimote is very sucky

+2 votes     reply to comment
zuriknet
zuriknet Sep 15 2008 says:

I can't say enough or too much. I LOVE the video. If a doctor could classify what is happening I wounder if it would be classified as a disease of the mind or a virus. I would have to say that either way the video is true.

I love Source, and can't wait to see what is in store next.

+1 vote     reply to comment
mokies
mokies Aug 7 2008 says:

Anybody knows when will be the release of HL2:EP3?

It's kinda long I guess... it's the last of HL2. Then another story will come again...

+3 votes     reply to comment
jacko1121
jacko1121 Jul 17 2008 says:

Source is one of the better engines out there, to me even better then the unreal engine just because the amount of detail.

+3 votes     reply to comment
leilei
leilei Jul 25 2008 buried:

(buried)

any engine can be 'detailed' too if you had a texture artist with a camera and a sharpen filter.

-8 votes     reply to comment
Soviet529
Soviet529 Sep 25 2008 replied:

you obviously don't know much about making games.

+3 votes     reply to comment
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Platforms
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Released Oct 2004
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Highest Rated (17 agree) 10/10

Even tho it is aging and it is beginning to show its weakness comparred to other more modern engines, it is still my most preferred engine and the only one I was able to get into succesfully. And with all of the updates Valve is giving it, I think the source engine will be with us for a long time. I wouldn't really recommend this for a commerical product, just because there are so many more modern engines out there that will be a lot easier in the long run (like UDK), but all of the commercial games…

Nov 16 2010 by Half_Kill

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