*** Super Soldier ability: Fully working stealth cloaking feature similar to Crysis' nanosuit. Bio-enhanced DOOM marine with bullet time ability (either slow down world or world except player). ***Equipment: Rear view camera, zoom camera, night vision, sentry bot. ***Supernatural Ability: Time freeze (experimental) Anomaly encounter. ***Enemy Behavior: Better AI. Zombie undead. ***Ammo & Weapons: Ultra realistic ammo management. Customizable quick weapon list. New weapon behaviors. ***Visual and Sound effects *** Persisted environment impact. Everything stays. *** Gibs behavior *** Photo Mode (experimental)
A History of DOOM3 BFG Super Soldier mod
DOOM3 was released on 2004. It was a graphically revolutionary game at that time with survivor horror element and id Software’s signature gunplay experience in DOOM universe. Id Software’s game is famous to be mod friendly. Modders over the world were able to modify the def and script files to tweak game behaviors to create mods. DOOM3 can also enable developer console to issue developer commands.
Id Software has another great tradition to open source their game code. In 2011 they released DOOM3 SDK. It was a major milestone as modders and programmers were able to fully modify the game to their heart’s content. The acclaimed DOOM3 mod Perfected DOOM3 modified at source code level.
Around 2010, in my personal view, PC games entered the modern era. Windows 7 evolved into a mature gaming platform. Windows 7 is the first mature platform to support multi-monitors setup. Starting with Directx 9, the game graphics became good enough, even judged at 2019.
I played game mainly for immersive cinematic experience. I usually play two types of games. One is super widescreen 32:9 aspect ratio in a triple-monitors setup. (Note I think 48:9 full screen triple monitors eyefinity type of setup is unnecessary and even bad. I mostly play in windowed mode 3840x1080 resolution with some software to make it borderless. The center monitor is similar as a regular 16:9 screen, while the left and right monitors adding peripheral vision to provide immersion). Another type of games I like to play are stereoscopic 3D using Nvidia 3D vision.
In 2012 DOOM3 BFG edition was released. It used a new version of game engine Id tech 5. While most gamers dismissed the BFG edition being not much improved over original DOOM3, to modders it did. Being released 8 years after the original, the game engine now become modern. An important feature is widescreen support, as a matter of fact, supports any wide ratio while expanding horizontally. Not many people know, it is capable to render internally at maximumly 240 fps. It also added stereoscopic support. However, the big draw back is that DOOM3 mods will not work with DOOM3 BFG, because game engine is different.
A month later, following the great tradition Id Software released DOOM3 BFG SDK source code. But since DOOM3 BFG still uses game content mostly made 8 years ago, the game does not look too good in modern standard.
All things changed in the end of 2015. There is an open source code fork called RBDOOM3BFG improved graphics. Meanwhile, a great mod DOOM3 BFG HiDef mod version 2.7 was released on Nov. 2015, with high quality models, textures and using RBDOOM3BFG as its game engine. I am really happy with it and timing looks great, so I have followed my urges and begin to develop my own mod during the 2nd quarter of 2016.
Note after I released my DOOM3 BFG Super Soldier mod in 2016 (at that time it was called DOOM3BCOMP, and renamed in 2019), I discover another great gaming utility called reshade that does post processing to the game. I apply it to any games now. Reshade enables me to customize colors, adjust brightness/contrast, sharpening pictures and many many more features.
The HiDef mod 2.7 and RBDOOM3DFG 1.1.0 engine (based on the original DOOM3 BFG engine) have everything that I need:
The above characteristics make the HiDef mod + RBDOOM3BFG the best modding platform, at least to me. There is no other modding project coming close, especially #4.
My goal of doing a DOOM3 BFG mod in 2016 is obviously that I want to play the game in my own way. Perfected DOOM3 mod is great but it does not work for BFG edition. It does not meet my need. And there were not many great DOOM3 BFG mods to be my liking either. My idea for the mod was as following:
Following is what I were able to achieve for corresponding points by modifying RBDOOM3BFG source code:
1. I improved stereoscopic comfort, but I have to admit that First Person Shooter is normally not the best genre for stereoscopic gaming. A good stereoscopic game demands objects laid in foreground and mid-ground, so that it has good perceived depth. 3rd person games are good at it. For FPS, foreground is the weapons that does not change much. Mid-ground is normally empty because the action (the shooting) is far at background level. It lacks depth. Nevertheless, my mod still looks OK as a stereoscopic game. I have posted 98 HD full side by side stereoscopic screenshots on moddb.com
2. I was able to create cube view (6 views, 12 views for stereoscopic) screenshot in a single image for VR, by modifying the render code. For sake of resolution and performance reason, it omits the back view and cut up and down view in half. I also created a software tool using opencv to rearrange the views to a picture that can be viewed in VR platform such as GearVR. Unfortunately, as I mentioned in point #1, the stereoscopic shot is not that impressive, but the regular 360 degree shot is still OK.
3. As I looked into the code, I discovered a hidden mode called invisible. The visual effect is fully working with a nice cloaking effect. There is baseline enemy AI behavior associated with the mode too. Immediately I think of Sci Fi such as Nanosuit in Crysis and Predator. Since DOOM3 can be difficult to play, adding a cloaking feature would introduce a great play strategy. I changed the code to make it a fully working game play element in all aspect.
4. Slow motion game play is great. Some games call it time dilation, bullet time etc. Many games have native game play for it. The notable one is Max Payne and movie Matrix. DOOM3 has a built in mode called Hell Time (player moves normally but the world is slow), but of course it is not available most of the time. Because DOOM3 BFG can be configured running internally at max 240 fps, even slow down to 0.2x, it can still output 48fps. That is really nice. So I created two slow motion modes. Mode #1 is at 0.8x together with Hell Time feature. Mode # is at 0.4x (globally) with glooming effect. Since slow motion makes fighting easy, I have to restrict it and not be able to using all the time. So I tied the cloaking, slow motion to the same battery source of flashlight, meaning it needs recharge to use it again. I basically made the slow motion become a native game play feature.
5. I want to increase the realism of the game to feel more suspense. I removed the crosshair, and force to use the laser sight. I changed the ammo reloading behavior, lose the ammo in clip when reloading. I even add the option to disable HUD ammo display.
6. As many other modders do, it is not hard to change special effects. With some source code change and script change, I was able to increase gore, increase particles effects a lot, body not burn away, brass stays, decal stays. Basically the destruction of fight persists in the game world, both increasing realism and over the top art style. On audio side, I have made the heartbeat sound louder.
7. A FPS game cannot be great without great weapons. I have rebalanced all weapons to be my liking, to tweak its behavior, and to work with the new cloaking mode when it is applicable. Notably, soul cube was added a early warning mode. Rocket became seeking missile. Grabber is modified to be more useful with new shield capability. Many more changes. Please check my other articles to learn more details.
8. A great FPS game needs not only great weapons, but also cool equipment to help the fight. During my work on VR for point #2, I found I can add a rear camera view to the screen. As a bonus, it became a mod feature as it can be useful as in DOOM3, monsters can pop up in your back.
DOOM3 BFG Super Soldier mod was developed only within a couple of months in 2016, changed game play entirely to my liking. Now time is 2019.
Before Halloween 2019, my interest in my DOOM 3 mod are rekindled again. This time I looked at the game code more thoroughly, mod any hidden features as many as possible, and maximize my knowledge to push for a V2.0 version to my own view of perfection. I have added new features that a few of them are quite innovative that I did not see anywhere else.
1) Sci Fi ability cloaking and slow motion is kept same as V1.0
2) My answer to the vanilla does-not-make-sense Nightware difficulty, I created a brand new feature called Anomaly Encounter.
3) Introduced new experimental time freeze ability. (may have glitches)
4) Five equipment total are now available, flashlight, night vision (by using reshade externally), rear cam view, zoomed view, and sentry bot.
5) Innovative Zombie undead feature.
6) Gibs behaviors.
7) Innovative mouse wheel quick weapon list feature.
8) Many enhanced visual and audio effects.
9) AI improvements (partly borrow from another mod)
10) Further ammo and weapon behavior changes
11) Photo mode (experimental).
My mod in “sic fi writing”/“sic fi game design” point of view
DOOM 3 BFG Super Soldier v2.0 features summary. Released Thanksgiving 2019.
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*** Super Soldier ability: Fully working stealth cloaking feature similar to Crysis' nanosuit. Bio-enhanced DOOM marine with bullet time ability (either...
98 High quality stereoscopic full side by side screenshots. Can be viewed directly by Nvidia 3D vision. resolution 3840x1080. Captured playing with DOOM3...
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