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Valve's Source on 360 Explored

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the freeman-invited-to-redmond dept.

23

Yesterday, Valve announced that Source will be available as middleware on the 360. Joystiq went back and asked them a few questions about what exactly that means to gamers. From the article: "The version included with our games (A.K.A. the MOD tools) includes a ton of tools and code for the creation of new products. However, there is a fair amount of code reserved for the 'Pro' version. It is certainly possible for end users or professional game designers (who are moonlighting) to create something with the tools included with purchase of our games, and then defer any decisions about licensing and sales until they've got something working. This was exactly the case with Counter-Strike, Day of Defeat, The Ship, and others."

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erm.. (2, Interesting)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 6 years ago | (#16470761)

Why don't valve just make it so HL2 on the Xbox is as moddable as the PC version. So mods would run natively on both?

Seems a simple idea to me..

Re:erm.. (1)

j00r0m4nc3r (959816) | more than 6 years ago | (#16471079)

"Simple" is not necessarily congruent to "Most Profitable"

Re:erm.. (1)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 6 years ago | (#16471277)

Simple in theory, difficult in execution. Tuning Source for the Xbox means that certain changes have to be made that would likely break mods developed for the PC HL2.

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#16471279)

that's cause you're a dumbfuck IT/gamer nerd who knows nothing of the real world

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#16471613)

And you're response to a /. games story shows you're different how exactly?

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16481819)

And you're response

"your".

Re:erm.. (4, Informative)

Ford Prefect (8777) | more than 6 years ago | (#16471327)

Why don't valve just make it so HL2 on the Xbox is as moddable as the PC version. So mods would run natively on both?

The 'code' portion of a Source mod is just an Windows x86 DLL, compiled from a load of C++. There's no sandboxing or anything, so a mod can happily corrupt the game's memory, call operating system functions, you name it. Disadvantages, yes - but the advantages are extremely high performance and versatility as to what the mods can do.

The original Half-Life operated in a similar way, and later mods for that did all sorts of things which would have been impossible in a sandbox. Like, alternative rendering engines, doing everything through OpenGL - or improved networking, sound or whatever.

In the case of the Xbox 360, I seriously doubt that Microsoft would allow such control over their hardware - they might as well send out free devkits and code-signing signatures to everyone.

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#16473977)

The original Half Life was based on the Quake 2 engine, which had an OpenGL and software renderer. Valve tacked on a D3D renderer for Half Life. So what the heck are you talking about?

Re:erm.. (1)

xation (809158) | more than 6 years ago | (#16474761)

... they might as well send out free devkits and code-signing signatures to everyone.

Why do you think Windows is so popular? Visual Studio is free and everyone can make programs for Windows.

Maybe this is what the XBox needs to increase its popularity - allow everyone to make games for it.

Re:erm.. (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 6 years ago | (#16475159)

Visual Studio costed money for a long time while Windows was the dominant player.

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#16476521)

yeah really, thats why it still lacks activation

Re:erm.. (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 6 years ago | (#16476633)

I think it was made free around the time the Windows programmers invented activation. Windows 2000 also still lacks activation.

Re:erm.. (1)

Trahald (698493) | more than 7 years ago | (#16481451)

Visual Studio was never even cheap, let alone free. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000BTA4LU/ ref=amb_link_32042801_1/102-7144420-5205703 [amazon.com] Or is $700 free by your standards ? And if you download VS Express and try it, you will know that its crippled, unusable on all but the smallest projects.

Re:erm.. (1)

NekoXP (67564) | more than 6 years ago | (#16475291)

Far from that, how do you expect to get a Windows x86 binary DLL compiled from C++ to run verbatim on a multithreaded dual core Power Architecture processor? .NET for gaming is what Microsoft would love you to do, and this is a solution, but I really really doubt you could make mods simply port across from the Windows code that easily, considering the architecture of it all.

However there is a decent incentive for Valve and Microsoft to work on this; you can sell mods on XBox Live. If MS could tie in the free XNA Studio release for homebrew development.. they would be onto a winner here.

Re:erm.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#16471581)

Why can't coders write programs that never crash and do everything exactly as I want it to be done?

Seems a simple idea to me..

Re:erm.. (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 6 years ago | (#16474097)

Obviously, you're not a programmer.

Re:erm.. (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#16474489)

We can, as long as you only want it to print 'Hello World' to the screen and exit. If you actually want to it to do something useful, there's a complexity issue that gets in the way.

You might as well as 'Why haven't they made the perfect car?'

Re:erm.. (1)

Lisandro (799651) | more than 6 years ago | (#16476137)

We can, as long as you only want it to print 'Hello World' to the screen and exit.

You forgot to check the return value of the print function!

Re:erm.. (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 6 years ago | (#16472705)

Because the Win32API isn't available on XBox. I fooled around with the idea of an IRC client inside HL2... it made use of winsock.

Furthermore, if you know anything about cross-platform programming, you know you have to code differently (IE use libraries supported by all platforms, for one thing) than if you are only coding for one platform... which all HL2 mods are!

Re:erm.. (1)

Warbringer87 (969664) | more than 7 years ago | (#16480649)

Why don't valve just make it so HL2 on the Xbox is as moddable as the PC version. So mods would run natively on both?
One can only wish this were true, but mods are the reason I love PC gaming, and the reason I don't care about console ports of PC games. Also, ignoring keyboards, consoles only have a limited number of buttons to work with.

Re:erm.. (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 7 years ago | (#16495729)

Well, ignoring keyboards, computers tend to have a 5.

Valve had plans for the PS3 too... (0, Offtopic)

CoolCat23 (923066) | more than 6 years ago | (#16471845)

...but the console was alledgedly stolen.

Re:Valve had plans for the PS3 too... (3, Funny)

creimer (824291) | more than 6 years ago | (#16474133)

The gurgling noise wasn't somewhere in the restroom but the hacked firewall trying to push the console out. Not a pretty site.
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