Last year, a technology company by the name of Euclideon showed off some technology they were working on that had to do with rendering unlimited detail graphics in real-time. After receiving much coverage by the media, they seemed to fade away. Recently, Euclideon published a video that showcased the progress that they have made with their graphics engine.
The graphics that they show off are very impressive, and I’m sure they would be truly awesome if implemented in a video game. There is, however, a lot of skepticism aimed at them. Other companies have been working on similar graphic technology, only to find that there are an overwhelming number of roadblocks. For one, these high-quality graphics would eat up a ton of memory and hard drive space.
It is likely that they are hiding their weaknesses while they show of their best points. The biggest reason for this is to get more investors and funding (which I’m sure they will- video game companies are spending sleepless nights trying to increase their polygon count).
The other thing to take note of is the lack of animation in their presentation. They say that they have since developed animation, but I imagine it’s very difficult.
Notch, the developer behind the wildly popular game Minecraft, had a few things to say about the subject. In his blog posts, he points out several weaknesses shown in the video, the limitations of high quality graphics, and several existing game engines that already make use of similar technology. The core weaknesses that he pointed out include the sky-high amount of data unlimited graphics consume, the identical structures in the demo that suggest difficulty int he management of unique data, and that voxels (the tiny elements that make up the graphics, kind of like 3D pixels) are terrible for animation. Some game engines that he pointed out include Atomontage and Voxlap. Due to all this, Notch is calling Euclideon’s promotion of their technology a scam.
Euclideon says their software development kit will be available “some months from now”. Is it going to be revolutionary? Is it actually going to happen? Is the usage of this unlimited detail technology in commercial video games feasible? I guess we’ll have to wait and find out.